Who Is the Pastor?

petersonPastor.

It’s a well-used word within the Protestant-evangelical community. And we have all sorts of ideas of what a pastor is, or at least should be.

He’s the guy (and, yes, male only, some would say) who delivers the 45-minute homily every Sunday morning (or 50 our 52 Sundays). Or he is to make sure doctrinal purity is maintained within the church, in accordance with biblical standards. Or she’s the one who visits the sick in the hospital or home. Or he or she make the direction and vision known to the church. Or she is the one to implement different programs that the members would like to see within the church community. O, problem of all problems, the pastor functions as the CEO of a corporate-esque entity.

And there are probably a host of other ideas out there.

But, as I was recently reading J.R. Briggs’ Fail: Finding Hope and Grace in the Midst of Ministry Failure, which I reviewed here, there was a very brief statement that caught my attention. It spoke of the main responsibility of a pastor. This was not Briggs’ own thought, but rather the relaying of words from long-time pastor, Eugene Peterson: Continue reading

Sycamore Row – by John Grisham

Sycamore_Row_-_cover_art_of_hardcover_book_by_John_GrishamThis past weekend, I completed John Grisham’s most recent novel, Sycamore Row. I’ve read all his books (except for a couple of the children’s novels). This was truly an enjoyable read, mainly for 3 reasons:

1) I hadn’t read a fiction novel in a few month’s time, with my head mainly stuck in theology.

2) The book takes you back to where Grisham’s novels all began: the 1980’s in Clanton, Mississippi. Specifically it connects back to his first published novel, A Time to Kill.

3) For me, the book had a good, emotion-evoking end.

Here’s the Amazon blurb: Continue reading

American Evangelicalism’s Non-Gospel Message

evangometerToday I was made aware of a most-interesting interview with Tullian Tchividjian, grandson of Billy Graham. He discusses the problem of how evangelicals have greatly veered off-track in what they hold most dear and worthy of proclamation: a political ideology rather than the gospel.

Read some of the interview below: Continue reading