Something the Lord Made

The finest made-for-television film that I have seen in 2009 has to be the HBO production Something the Lord Made (2004). It is the dramatic story of two men—one a wealthy white chief surgeon, the other a poor black lab technician from Tennessee. Together, as a remarkable and inseparable team, they achieved a monumental medical breakthrough. One, the white surgeon, … Read More

Columbine Ten Years Later: The Story of Two Pastors Who Were There

A recent issue of Newsweek (April 20) provided a very moving account of the lives of two pastors who ministered to the grieving during the time of the Columbine High School massacre ten years ago. This is “the rest of the story,” or at least a significant part of it. Christians should pay attention to this story. The two pastors … Read More

An Update on My Friend David Stopke

Many of you have been praying for David Stopke since I wrote two earlier blogs about him and the accidental shooting on April 17th. He took a turn for the better on Thursday-Friday of last week, after surgery was canceled due to fluid in his lungs. His lungs are clearing up now day-by-day. He is more alert and has even … Read More

The Soloist: My Favorite 2009 Film, So Far

The Soloist, starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Jamie Foxx, is my favorite movie in 2009, at least so far. Likely there will be better movies but this one touched me very deeply. The Soloist tells the true story of Nathaniel Ayers (Jamie Foxx), gifted cellist and former Julliard student whose schizophrenia derailed his musical goals. Steve Lopez, a Los Angeles … Read More

Taxation and Politics: Are You Fed Up Yet?

The morning paper sometimes ruins my breakfast. Such was the case a few weeks ago when the Daily Herald ran a front page story with the title: "Five Myths Told By Illinois Politicians." I am not surprised that there are such myths. I am just surprised at how blatant they are and why almost no one in my state cares, … Read More

Dealing With Criticism

I learned a long time ago that anyone who entered the Christian ministry would have to deal with criticism. The late Vance Havner once said a minister needs the heart of a saint and the hide of a rhinoceros. I have found that to be true. My problem has been that I do not always handle criticism very well. I … Read More

Criticism: Have We Crossed Over the Line?

One of the favorite pastimes of modern Americans in general, and many Christians in particular, is judging or criticizing others. We seem to relish the opportunity to find fault, assign blame or just plain criticize others. This is so common in everyday conversation that it is like a plague in the social system of our culture. This may be one … Read More

Focusing on the Church Outside the Walls

Emergent churches often receive considerable attention in the press because they offer an element of surprise to readers who know little or nothing about them. One such church, with the fairly typical emergent type name of Fusion Church, meets in a Chicago suburb about a 45-minute drive from my home. Fusion Church is in Lake Zurich (IL). It was featured … Read More

An Update on David Stopke

Thanks to scores of you who have prayed for David Stopke and the Stopke family since I posted their story a few days ago. I have now been to Las Vegas and am back home again in Illinois. David was able to hear me speak to him on Tuesday and heard my prayers for him. His eyes filled with tears … Read More

Prayer is Irksome

 We must be honest about it, prayer is difficult for all of us. No one is immune to this great difficulty. Only immature Christians think otherwise. C. S. Lewis wrote: Well, let’s now at any rate come clean. Prayer is irksome. An excuse to omit it is never unwelcome. When it is over, this casts a feeling of relief and … Read More