Baptism Song: “Water Free”

I wrote and recorded this song with my band, Sign of Jonah, back in 1997. Since we are doing baptism at Christ the King Church tomorrow, I remembered this song and decided to post it here. Water Free Water Free All of my friends gather closely As we celebrate life and death and resurrection We join hands to thank, the executioner A close circle all around Yes, I love them dearly And all this time I keep thinking about What will it be like when its done I keep thinking about The resurrection Chorus May we never forget His sacrifice, But God forbid we ignore That Jesus is still alive I open my eyes for a moment While bright sparkles of sun Tickle my face And I smile momentarily I could stay here forever Never let me emerge The warm light refracts Through the waves of life rushing over my…

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Getting a Divorce from Porn

There’s a guy in my church who’s gotten serious about killing his desire for pornography. After realizing that he has had a longer relationship with pornography than any girlfriend, he decided that he’d had enough. He was married to pornography and it was time to get a divorce. This isn’t a “struggle,” he’s not going to “work on it” or “try to get better.” He’s given her the divorce papers and the relationship is over, its final, and there’s no trial separation. Men need to get radical with pornography and quit playing games. Jesus said if you eye causes you to sin, gouge it out! (Matthew 5:27-30) I have gained his permission to reprint his poem, where he serves divorce papers to pornography and breaks free. The Divorce Papers was written by Patrick Harner. The Divorce Papers She’s been with me since before my brain grew into a mature mass…

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Christian Hipsters

Definition of a Christian Hipster: Christian hipsters like music, movies, and books that are well-respected by their respective artistic communities–Christian or not. They love books like Resident Aliens by Stanley Hauerwas and Will Willimon, Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger by Ron Sider, God’s Politics by Jim Wallis, and The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis. They tend to be fans of any number of the following authors: Flannery O’Connor, Walker Percy, Wendell Berry, Thomas Merton, John Howard Yoder, Walter Brueggemann, N.T. Wright, Brennan Manning, Eugene Peterson, Anne Lamott, C.S. Lewis, G.K. Chesterton, Henri Nouwen, Soren Kierkegaard, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Annie Dillard, Marilynne Robison, Chuck Klosterman, David Sedaris, or anything ancient and/or philosophically important. Christian hipsters love thinking and acting Catholic, even if they are thoroughly Protestant. They love the Pope, liturgy, incense, lectio divina, Lent, and timeless phrases like “Thanks be to God” or “Peace of…

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Further Up and Further In

My favorite moment in all of the Narnia books by C.S. Lewis is the last part of the final book, The Last Battle. The children enter into the “real Narnia” through a narrow door and find that this new Narnia is even more beautiful and more real than the one they had known. They are constantly invited to come “further up and further in.” At each successive turn, just when they think they had arrived at their destination, they found that something more spectacular was yet beyond and they needed to go even further in to reach it. And so it went, journeying further up and further in, always more elated than the moment before. From the book: For them, it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page;…

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Racial Unity, Arts, Mercy, College Students and Church Planting

There are several streams of ministry desires that have been in my heart for some time. Some seemed more realistic than others. For example, Laura and I have a strong passion for racial reconciliation, but this problem seems so overwhelmingly difficult that I had relegated it to the “would be nice, but…” status. Essentially, the people that I have spoken with who understand this issue well told me that it would be very difficult for a white man to address the complex issues of black America with any degree of credibility.

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