If I Were Preaching Easter

Every year when I was a preaching pastor, I felt the anxiety rise the closer we got to Easter Sunday morning. The expectations. The crowds. The desire of the people to hear something new and meaningful. Though I had a mentor once tell me don’t sweat it, just tell the story. The problem is that
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Sitting With Holy Saturday

Welcome to one of the darkest days of the whole year— for Christians that is—the day we wait with Jesus in the tomb. It’s the day that no one visited the tomb of Jesus. It’s the day when nothing happened in the gospel narrative. It’s the day that can be summarized in one word: silence.
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Ash Wednesday Gone Bad

Back by popular demand is a blog post that I wrote in February of 2007 about an experience during my first year as a full-time pastor. Please laugh along with me (though it wasn’t funny at the time). By means of background, Ash Wednesday fell on my birthday this year: a day which should be a
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Wait Here

Wait Here: A Conversation with Exodus 24:12-18 & Matthew 17:1-9 Sermon Preached at Broadneck Baptist Church, Annapolis, MD Today, we are waiting here. Waiting together. Waiting on a word. Waiting on some truth. Waiting on God to show up and help us be different people than we came into this room, right? Its kind of the point
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The Jesus Year Is Over

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For many of you who follow me online you might know that I made a big deal out of my birthday last year. I was turning 33. I called it my Jesus year for I’d reached the age in which Jesus was when he died. Big accomplishment for my geeky religious soul. Right? My sister
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God Smiling

I am not one to throw around religious cliques. It irritates me in fact when folks in positions of religious leadership use such statements as “Everything happens for a reason” or “I guess God needed an angel” or “God helps those who help themselves.” Gross, really. But I am reconsidering my use of the phrase
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I Want to Know Christ

I Want to Know Christ Philippians 3:7-11 Preached: August 11, 2013, Martin Luther King Christian Church, Reston, VA I always knew when I was younger that one day I’d want to be married. I would want to have a life partner—someone in whom I could share in all of life’s most memorable moments with and
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Feeling Out of Sorts

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what it means to be out of step or out of sorts with the rest of your community. Maybe it is because the tragedies of last week in Boston and in Waco, TX still lay heavy on so many of our hearts. Though the news cycle will soon
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Sorrow and Joy

Last weekend, I experienced a moment when I knew I’d seen a family walk through the fullness of “it was the worst of times and it was the best of times.” I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how it is that we move through life when really bad things happen and also the good too.
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The Church Gets it Right

Yesterday, Washington Plaza Baptist hosted a memorial service for the brother and brother in-law of two of our devoted church leaders, Mark. The congregation was almost full of those who came to pay their respects. It wasn’t full because everyone in the room had a relationship with the deceased or even had met Mark, but many people came out
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