Some big themes in Mark’s Gospel

Kingdom The theme of God’s kingdom is significant to all of the Gospels but particularly stands out in Matthew and Mark. Matthew refers to it as The Kingdom of Heaven, this links to a Jewus reluctance to even speak out God’s name so that other words are used in place of “God” or “YHWH.” Heaven… Continue reading Some big themes in Mark’s Gospel

Food from around the world wide web

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First of all, a couple of articles related to mental and emotional health. We’ve got a guest article on Grace In The Depths where Jon tells his story of experiencing periods of acute hyper- mania The Great White Shark. Secondly, This article about ministry burnout in Premier Christianity includes an interview with my friend Pete… Continue reading Food from around the world wide web

Don’t forget who the real enemy is

Back after 911, there was a particularly intense period when anyone of Asian or middle eastern appearance was at risk from backlash.  Not only did people conflate the attack by Islamist extremists with an attack from all Muslims but also people who were not even Muslims but rather Sikhs and Hindus were conflated with the… Continue reading Don’t forget who the real enemy is

Why do we struggle to talk about pastors and depression?

A few years back I was asked to cover a couple of sessions for a ministry training course. One of the sessions was on “failure.” The request came with a couple of those expected awkward jokes along the lines of “we aren’t picking you for any specific reason.” Indeed, at the time, arguably I’d not… Continue reading Why do we struggle to talk about pastors and depression?

Towards a theology of depression

 Last year I contributed to a short book called “The Pastor with a thorn in his side.” It’s a book which tells the stories of 7 pastors who have faced depression during their ministry. Steve Kneale edited the book and as well as telling his own story provides an introduction and a conclusion. In those… Continue reading Towards a theology of depression

Can we talk about ugliness?

John Piper hosts a podcast called “Ask Pastor John”. Recently he was asked: ““Pastor John, why did God make some people ugly and unattractive? How can I accept the fact that God, though capable of making me beautiful or at least average looking, chose to create me in an unattractive manner?” Now I guess, Piper… Continue reading Can we talk about ugliness?

In the Darkest Hour (1 Peter 3:8-22)

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“In the darkest hour, when I cannot breatheFear is on my chest, the weight of the world on meEverything is crashing down, everything I had knownWhen I wonder if I’m all alone” These are the opening lines of Lauren Daigle’s song “Remember.”  What do we do when we face “the darkest hours” of our lives?… Continue reading In the Darkest Hour (1 Peter 3:8-22)

Why does God allow suffering?

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This is a big question.  It’s big because it raises philosophical questions about God’s goodness (love, wisdom etc.) and his greatness (sovereignty, omnipresence, omniscience, omnipotence). Why do good things happen to bad people? How can a God of love tolerate suffering? God is sovereign -can’t stop the suffering If God is a God of love… Continue reading Why does God allow suffering?