Stillness

I have always been attracted to poets who sense God’s presence in the...


Phony Emails

Yesterday I received an email from myself. That’s usually not a good sign in...


Coming In Out Of The Wind

I’m back. A number of friends have asked me if I would ever return to my blog....


Singing Simply For The Beauty

Last Sunday our choir at church sang this beautiful anthem: For the beauty of...


Seeing What Simeon Saw

I’ve been trying to enter the amazing Christmas story from the inside out. I...


We Live With Yearning

The Psalms never cease to surprise. You think the poem is giving it to you...


Joy In A Child's Laughter

I’ve been thinking a lot about joy. It’s kind of hard to find these days....


It's Still About Engaging The Culture

In 1996 I began work as the President of Seattle Pacific University. Like any...


Traveling Blessings

I have been reading a lot of Celtic poetry lately. Most of this poetry is...


The Beauty Of Summer

  Claude Monet  I love summer. As I’ve been marveling on my little patio...


Can Our Nation Ever Rejoice Again?

I’ve been wondering lately whether it might ever be possible again for our...


Just Keep Watching

As we plug into the news every morning, we are often overwhelmed with how much...


Speaking With Grace

In my last post I talked about how Michael Gerson characterizes the state of our...


Finding Our Better Selves

I woke up yesterday at 2 AM and found myself churning over the current climate...


It's Time To Talk About Frogs

It’s time to talk about frogs. It’s time to think about, in Christian...


We are Easter people now!

“Where do we go from here,” we ask ourselves on this Monday morning after...


A Serious House For A Serious Earth

I’ve been thinking a lot about church. What is church? What is the main...


My New Book Is Out!

Hooray, my new book is finally out! My fabulous publisher Wipf & Stock...


Sing With The Shepherds

I woke up on Christmas Eve morning this year with child-like eagerness. After...


The Chance To Kneel

I’ve been thinking about that manger Christians revere at Christmas time. It...


What's Funny?

It’s cool to be funny these days. We love to watch the late-night-comedian...


When Lightning Struck In Luther's Study

I’ve been trying to zero in on the heart of the Reformation. Good luck, I hear...


It Is Good To Be Here

In the ancient teachings of contemplative prayer, it is common practice to enter...


It's High Time To Rise

I began again this morning a new cycle through the Psalms. This has been my...


Waiting On God's Favor

Most of the time we think we are in control of our lives, perhaps especially...


The Lazy Days Of Summer--And God

The New York Times last Sunday asked two contemporary American poets to reflect...


My Prayer Corner

I come to my prayer corner early every morning. I sink down into my prayer...


The Train Needs A New Track

I woke up one morning a week or so ago with Twitter going crazy over some very...


St. Benedict Revisited

I feel compelled to return to the hot topic of the “Benedict option.” I...


The Season For Memory

I was struck the other evening with a sharp, painful stab of nostalgia. I...


Unhooked From Politics

I’m trying to depoliticize, unhook, maybe that’s a better word, from the...


Good Friday—So Utterly Alone

Jesus was taken away, and went out, carrying the cross himself, to the place...


The Builder And The Contemplative

In his magnificent book The Love of Learning and The Desire for God: A Study of...


A Nation Of "No"?

I woke up Saturday morning pondering whether we had become “a nation of...


Stepping Into Silence

I am thinking these days I simply can’t control the world. “Duh,” you...


Reclaiming Christian Community?

Big publishing news going on today. A long-awaited and much-anticipated...


Crowding Around The Table

François Mauriac begins one of the chapters in his intriguing 1962 book What I...


Like A Drop Of Water

I was thinking the other day how each human being is unique. So is each animal,...


All Is Well . . . Things Are Okay

In my ongoing efforts to step aside from the madness in which we seem engulfed,...


Deep Calls To Deep

I don’t think my mind is big enough, broad or bright enough, to be an...


The Benedict Option?

There is lots of talk these days...


Living In A Bubble—Who Me?

Apparently we live in a world of alternative truths. We float around in our...


The Dawn Of A New Day

Is it ever possible to be satisfied, to be fully self-accepting, to be content?...


A Cup Of Coffee And The Psalms

As I begin this new year, I am trying to reshape my posture toward our...


Are We Ready For Something New?

At this time of year, I have always been an inveterate goal setter. I love the...


Putting The Ego Back In Its Cage

Our world is saturated with the human ego these days. We are swamped. It can...


The Power Of A Dinner Table

I am looking for good news these...


Waiting For Uplift

The bad news is relentless these days. I find myself skipping through the...


Time For Some Good News

Maybe it’s time for some good news. On the morning when 100 million of us are...


Nowhere To Go

Vincent Van Gogh painted his remarkable Wheatfields With Crows in the summer of...


Lifting The Burden Of Shame

We live in an age of shame. We are instructed endlessly to feel ashamed of...


Why Write A Blog?

Why write a blog? There must be a zillion of them out there. So many are...


A Fresh Breeze From Charleston

I spent last weekend longing for some fresh summer breezes. But really my...


The Big Uneasy On Campus

What’s roiling our college...


Safety On Our Campuses

I keep circling around an incredible column by Peggy Noonan a few weeks ago in...


Discovering Our Purpose

New York Times columnist David Brooks has been talking a lot (in speeches,...


Case For The Humanities

Mark Bauerlein, senior editor...


Signals From The Edge

Are you ever suddenly surprised that there is something instead of nothing? Or...


Magic, Mystery, And Illusion

Sharon and I went to see Woody Allen’s delightful movie last night called...


And What About Mystery?

I want to return to that amazing article I quoted from a few days ago by Adam...


The Possibility Of Belief: Do The Nays Have It?

I am one who is rarely dispassionate about the secularization of our culture. I...


Americans Are Exhausted

Lots of pictures this morning of our valiant U. S. soccer players, sprawled out...


A Radiant People At SPU

I write just several days after inexplicable, unexpected violence struck at the...


Studies Show. . . .

We are a society of studies. We’ve got studies for everything. A study out of...


What’s All This Talk About Enemies?

I don’t walk around thinking about enemies. That’s not a word that slips...


The Front Edge Of Character Formation

At the annual conference for presidents of the Council Of Independent Colleges,...


Waking Up In Radical Amazement

David Brooks has written an extraordinary reflection about the difficulty of...


Back Again

Yikes, some time has passed since I wrote my last blog post. Perhaps as we begin...


Broken Windows In Our City

I thought I would share for my blog readers an Op-Ed I wrote for this...


Becoming Radiant People

Over last weekend I had the privilege of preaching at the historic Lake Avenue...


Sing Us A Song Of Joy

I am delighted to be preaching at all services this weekend, October 12-13,...


On Making The Brain Nice

Some of my best friends are brain scientists. Well, actually, there is only one,...


I Have No Idea What’s Going On

“I have no idea what’s going on”—that’s the way Henry Allen begins...


We Are All Just A Little Crazy

We are all just a little crazy. Did you ever stop and think about that? We like...


Good Leadership And The A-Rod Factor

There’s something fundamental going on with the Alex Rodriquez fiasco. It was...


No Options When It Comes To Good Leadership

When I cut my teeth as a young leader, I tried, like most leaders, to sort out...


Surprise At The McDonald’s In Nogales

N. T. Wright says that we are often startled by the “long-range signposts ”...


John Lennon Got Some Things Wrong, Beautifully

On a beautiful, warm evening last week, Sharon and I attended an outdoor concert...


What Does It Mean To Be Struck By Grace?

I feel like I was struck by grace this past week. Two reflections, by two...


The Night My Dad Died

I have been writing a poem about the night my dad died. It was a very special...


The Little Way To A Good Life

I have just finished reading a remarkable book called The Little Way of Ruthie...


The World Needs Our Universities

Our universities in America are the envy of the world. There are a lot of...


On The Dangers Of Forgetting

I want to offer up a wonderful poem by the late contemporary Polish-American...


What Should We Be Worrying About?

I continue to worry about the persistent devaluing of language. The pressures of...


Following Twitter

Here today, gone tomorrow. Or rather, here for the moment, gone in an instant....


On Loneliness And Love

Edward Hopper is the master painter of loneliness, capturing life in the city in...


What Is Life?

What is life? Most of the time we are too busy even to ask the question, but...


Shakespeare And The Dangerous Power Of Ego

April 23rd is said to be Shakespeare’s birthday. Not sure when you last...


Boston And The Language Of Evil

Somehow on April 15, 2013 those horrific images of carnage at the Boston...


Will Someone Please Answer The Phone?

 Have you read recently one of those warning sheets from the pharmacy on the...


A Poem For Endings And New Beginnings

Here is a poem I have written recently. To be sure it says something about...


Thinking Again About Power

The new Pope is giving all kinds of signals that humility is the highest measure...


Yearning For Christian Renewal

I am watching the developments within the Catholic Church with intense interest...


Simple As Beautiful

We need some answers these days. We need answers to some of our lingering,...


The Downton World: Order And Respect

Sharon and I are watching the first year’s series of Downton Abbey over...


Rome And The Limits Of Taxation

Taxes are in the news these days. Throughout the presidential election, and...


Be Kind, Be Good

I am writing a new book I am tentatively calling A Radiant People: The Christian...