Welcome to my blog. I spend half my life in coffee shops having honest conversations about how following Jesus works in real life. So, let’s learn together, grab a cup and – join the conversation.

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I’ll post every Monday and invite you to weigh in.

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Quick Bio
I’m a businessman, elder in one of the more conservative mega churches in Grand Rapids, Michigan and for over 25 years a full time spiritual mentor of men. I love introducing people to Jesus and truth from God’s perspective. I’m also an NPR listener and student of our culture because I want to understand how the world and a younger generation think, so I’m prepared to engage in conversations which are true to the Bible, intellectually honest and gracious.

Following Jesus is the only hope I have of living this life with purpose, energy and expectation. I hope to end my days on earth still meeting young men at Starbucks who have no interest in God, being the patriarch of my family, cheering them on to godliness, making sad people smile and the lonely – laugh, giving the poor hope, pointing wayward men back to their families, teaching the whole counsel of God and keeping myself unstained – God’s reputation and mine intact.

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Welcome to my blog.
I spend half my life in coffee shops having honest conversations about how following Jesus works in real life. So, let’s learn together, grab a cup and join the conversation.

This edition from Simon and Schuster has been totally revised with expanded teachings and a study guide. Available in stores and online now!


   
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What If There Is Nothing After Death?
Posted by Clare
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A few weeks ago, I gathered with our older grandchildren (high school and college) for what they call Papa School. They suggest topics they’d like to discuss about the Christian life, the Bible, history – you name it and I try to answer them.

One of the questions they asked was “how can we say with confidence, all other religions are wrong and we are right?” You can read my blog “The Myths That Not-Yet Christians Believe About God” for the answer to that question.

But one of the other impromptu questions during that discussion was this, “Papa, what if the Bible isn’t true and there’s nothing after death?”
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Why All the Fascination with the “End Times?”
Posted by Clare
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Every few years, my former pastor, now with Jesus, used to ask the congregation for topics on which they’d most like him to teach. “The End Times,” the events leading up to Jesus return, the judgment and the eternal kingdom of God were always in the top five. Above all, “when will Jesus return?”

Our Single Adults pastor used to joke, the most three popular topics for unmarried Christians were;

  1. End Times
  2. Sex
  3. Sex in the End Times

So, why all the fascination with End Times and in specific, trying to pin-point when Jesus will return?
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Was Jesus “Soft On Crime?”
Posted by Clare
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I think most Christians believe the God of the Old Testament was fearsome. He spoke from Mount Sinai words that terrified the Israelites. He gave them hundreds of laws and commanded harsh penalties for disobedience. He actually killed 25,000 Israelites once for disobeying his command to not intermarry with other nations.

To be fair, God also declared his love for his people time and time again, but disobedience wasn’t an option. He was a God to be both loved and feared.

Then along came Jesus. “Meek and Mild” Jesus. The forgiver of the woman caught in adultery and of Peter who denied him. He even asked the Father to forgive the soldiers nailing him to the cross. It’s easy to think of Jesus as being soft on sin – a kinder, more gentle version of the Old Testament God.
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Moving Beyond the Weather
Posted by Clare
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Tonight is New Years Eve and tomorrow, more food, drinks and perhaps watching sports. And of course, the conversations with family and friends, some of whom you know well and enjoy and others – well, not so much.

If you believe you are Jesus’ surrogate – his stand-in in this life, and in your family, there are conversations he wants you to have tonight and tomorrow that go beyond talking about the weather. (or sports, politics, etc.) So how might Christians better prepare themselves for these redemptive relationship opportunities?
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