I was in Bangkok, Thailand in 2020 just a few weeks before Covid-19 shut everything down. After I did my business in the shopping mall men’s room, I noticed the front of the stall. It was a picture of an ‘elder’. I guess I had used the right one! (see photo). Elders can come in… Read More The Importance of ‘Elders’ Letting Go
How does the future look to you? In parts of the world like where I am at present, covid is retreating and life begins to return to ‘normal’. You may be reading this in a nation or region where life is anything but normal, instead perhaps in lockdown or curfew of some kind. In just… Read More The Future is as Bright as the Promises of God
There are moments or seasons that strip us of everything. We are left without disguise, even to ourselves. It can truly seem like it is the end, and as far as our efforts, it in fact may be. These times are places of extremity, where we go beyond where we have been before. Places often… Read More Coming to the end of ourselves
Last week, on July 8, was the 40th year anniversary of one of the greatest hope-crushing days of my life. I had just completed my first year serving with the mission group, YWAM, that I am still with. On that day in July, 1980, I was to have departed from Sea-tac airport in Seattle with… Read More Ever feel your hopes have been crushed?
Many words have already been written about the death this week of John Allen Chau, a 27 year old American from my home state of Washington. Chau was killed in the North Sentinel Island, part of the Andaman and Nicobar Island chain and a Union Territory of India. Desiring to share the love of Christ… Read More When Love Trumps All
Yes, here I am. At one of the wonders of the world. Not just from late 8th century China, but from any century. Last week I stood again in front of the ‘Nestorian Stele’, an over 10 foot tall monument filled with the history of the Church of the East in China from their arrival… Read More A Wonder of the 8th century World
It is sometimes thought that those who change history must be outsiders. People who seem to appear as if from another time, so strange and unearthly that all around them must somehow come under the force-field of their influence. Wrong. At least, wrong to a great degree. For actually while it may be true that… Read More An ‘Integrated Non-conformist’ in History
If you have read this blog even a bit, you know my feelings about Mother Teresa. I had the great honor and privilege to meet her twice in Kolkata, in 1985 and 1994. I have written posts about her before, and continue to be deeply inspired by her life and the sisters who carry on… Read More Changing history by creating ripples
I’ve been in Princeton, New Jersey the last few days, giving a lecture at a conference on the history of World Christianity. Yesterday as I walked to the site of the meetings, I came across a yard sign that stopped me in my tracks. It so expressed what I have tried to live by in… Read More No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor!!
One of the greatest pains in life is the isolation caused by personal or family struggles that we feel can’t be shared. It is just too shameful, too jarring perhaps from the personal narrative we have carefully constructed and maintained. Then something happens, and the whole edifice begins to collapse, sometimes slowly but often rapidly… Read More Mental Illness and the Courage to be Real