Jesus Makes Me Uncomfortable

When Christians talk about Jesus, they often go on and on about how much Jesus loves them, or comforts them, or makes them feel happy inside. And that’s fair enough. Jesus does all of those things! But Jesus also challenges us to serve God’s world. And serving God’s world can be very uncomfortable. Living a life of service is one of the most well-attested…

Go Away. Often.

Sometimes I get so caught up in my day-to-day routines that I forget the world we live in is bigger than just my home, my office, and my community. So it was a great surprise last Fall when my wife whisked me away on a short road trip to go see a presentation by Josh Gates, who is the host of a TV series…

Up and Down

My life has been filled with ups and downs. Over the long course of my experiences, there have been good years and bad years, good months and bad months, good days and bad days. In some moments, I have been able to see God’s presence in the world with absolute clarity. In others…not so much. Similarly, some Sunday mornings I don’t feel much like…

One Step at a Time

I once read an account of a person who climbed to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, which is one of the Seven Summits of the world. As the person told the story of the trip, he spoke of how difficult it was to continue by the time his group got close to the top of the mountain. Everyone was cold. Everyone was tired. Everyone…

​The Footsteps of Jesus

Churches talk a lot about Jesus. We celebrate his birth. We celebrate his life. We celebrate his resurrection. In the church, the words and actions of Jesus are at the very center of our faith. So, once a year, the church goes on a journey to walk with Jesus from the beginning of his ministry all the way to his death and resurrection. This…

The American Spirit: Underground

I grew up in a small town, where I was taught that racism was dead: slavery was over; segregation had been shut down; and all people were treated equally. Yet, as I got older, I began to hear more and more stories about racism still affecting our nation. So, over the course of this past year, I took my family on a journey to…

The Open Table

When I was in seminary, every student was required to go on a cross-cultural immersion trip. The purpose of the trip was to send pastors-to-be to faraway places, so they could gain a broader view of the world. And so they could know how it feels to depend on the hospitality of strangers. As I was getting ready to leave for my cross-cultural trip…

The Most Stressful Time of the Year – Pastor Ryan Grace

Christmas means so many different things. Decorations. Gifts. Travel. Going over the river and through the woods to family reunions. And, oh yes, there’s also celebrating the birth of Jesus! Having all these things going on at the same time introduces a huge amount of stress and tension…and all at a time when we are supposed to be enjoying ourselves! So, when various celebrities…

A Variety of Gifts – Pastor Ryan Grace

I love putting together puzzles. I’m not sure why, but there is something immensely satisfying about taking all those little unique pieces, searching for the exact place where each one belongs, then joining them in a way that makes a bigger, fuller picture than any of them could be on their own. As I think about my years in ministry, I believe churches are…

My Bible Says…What the Bible Really Teaches about Family Values

My Bible Says…What the Bible Really Teaches about Family Values – Pastor Ryan Grace My home is a crazy place. With a 2-year-old, a 10-yearold, a 15-year-old, and an 18-year-old, there is no shortage of dramatic situations. But I know the craziness of life doesn’t only affect families of six–all households have circumstances that get out of control. So it doesn’t come as a…