Do not be ashamed to enter the Church

John Chrystotom once said, “Do not be ashamed to enter again into the Church. Be ashamed when you sin. Do not be ashamed when you repent. Pay attention to what the devil did to you. These are two things: sin and repentance. Sin is a wound; repentance is a medicine. Just as there are forContinue reading “Do not be ashamed to enter the Church”

Contemplating salvation in the depths of depression

As I grapple with my own depression I am reminded that there is an already / not yet tension in the way the apostles spoke of salvation. They had witnessed the resurrection of Jesus, but the resurrection of the dead was still to come. They had witnessed the defeat of death, and yet the threatContinue reading “Contemplating salvation in the depths of depression”

Is something essential being overlooked?

A man who has never had that experience, be it only very briefly, who has never felt that he is exiled from God and from real life, will never understand what Christianity is about. And the one who is perfectly “at home” in this world and its life, who has never been wounded by theContinue reading “Is something essential being overlooked?”

The story of the sower

Spring has me thinking of the story of the sower. This image illustrates the story from a variety of cultural perspectives. For those unfamiliar with the story, the Gospel of Mark retells it like this: Again Jesus began to teach by the lake. The crowd that gathered around him was so large that he gotContinue reading “The story of the sower”

How can one death make any difference?

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29) When we consider the blood spilled every day in the wars that rage across the surface of the earth, it is difficult to comprehend how one more death canContinue reading “How can one death make any difference?”

The false gospel of self righteousness

“As we bring the gospel home to our family, we dare not do so as a self-righteous older brother. Even if our family members are out squandering their inheritance with prostitutes or wallowing in the mud with pigs, if we’re pointing to our record of good behavior while condemning their wicked ways, it will beContinue reading “The false gospel of self righteousness”