Friday, June 1, 2018

the blue book is now available on amazon

Exciting News!  The Blue Book is now available on Amazon!  And not only that, but it also has a bunch of new content!  I've been working for the past year or so to write an opening reflection for each chapter and I'm really excited about the end result.  I hope you will be too.  So please spread the word.  Tell your friends that the strange blue devotional book that has always been so hard to find, is hard to find no more.

*Update: Thanks for the great response!  Glad to see the book still seems to be helpful to so many in making space to hear God's voice and know of his great affection.  Since the book has been released on Amazon I do, however, find that I miss the contact with many of you.  I miss hearing the stories of how God has used the book in your life or ministry.  So, if you have the time, I would love it if you would just leave your comments here, or drop by Amazon and give a review.  And, as always, feel free to email me with your Blue Book story if you'd like.  I love hearing them. Blessings, Jim

Sunday, March 18, 2018

will you really

will you really
lay down your life
for me

will you really
lay aside
all privilege
and power
and preference

will you really
place yourself
totally and unreservedly
in my hands

will you really
empty yourself
of self
that you might
be full of me

will you really
surrender all
that you have
and all
that you are
to my rule
and my care

will you really

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

trust me

dear jim

here is what
you need to do today

hold all things loosely
and cling to me tightly

i got this


Monday, March 12, 2018

simon of cyrene

as they were
going out
they met a man
from cyrene
named simon
and they
forced him
to carry the cross
matthew 27:32

sometimes we don't
have a choice
whether we will carry
the cross or not

it is simply
forced upon us

but we do always
have a choice
as to how
we will carry it

and that choice
can make all the difference

Thursday, March 8, 2018


So I spent a weekend with some wonderful folks in Geneva, IL a couple of weeks ago.  And it was delightful.  They were all a part of the body of believers that gather at Saint Mark's Episcopal Church, or "Saint Markers," as they affectionately call themselves.

Saint Mark's is an extraordinary place, with sacred worship spaces, warm and inviting people, a deep and rich communal life, and a beautiful and thoughtful liturgy.  I had been to a few Anglican and Episcopal churches before, so the dance that I saw (and had the privilege of entering into) at Saint Mark's was not totally new to me, but one I don't often get to enjoy.  There was a sense of awe and wonder and reverence at Saint Mark's that I have not often experienced in my forty-one years of following Jesus.  We stood and we sang and we knelt and we prayed.  We bowed and we read and we listened and we passed the peace.  And at the very center of it all was the Cross of Christ and the Table of our Lord.  We came to the rail and knelt at the altar and opened our hands to receive the Body and drink the Blood and remember the death of our Savior; and thus enter into the mysteries of the Holy Sacrament.  It was rich and wonderful time.

It got me thinking about liturgy in general, and how each of us has the opportunity, if not the obligation, to write our own, both for ourselves and for our own communities of faith.  We are the ones--with God's help and guidance--who get to determine what we will do in our worship.  We get the privilege and the responsibility to listen closely to God, and to how he made us, and to craft a liturgy that makes us alive and vibrant as we live our lives with, for, and before him.  We get to decide what best expresses our worship and adoration.  We get to decide when we will kneel and when we will pray.  We get to determine when (or if) we will sing and when we will dance.  We get to be the artists of this incredible masterpiece of worship; all aimed at glorifying the One who breathed us into being.  We are the ones who are given the freedom to decide what our lives--both together and separately--will look like.  Oh, it might not look exactly like it does at Saint Mark's, but it will be a beautiful and thoughtful and intentional expression of who God made us to be.  So let's pick up that pen and start writing.

Friday, March 2, 2018

the hard way

narrow is the gate
and hard is the way
that leads to life
and those who
find it are few
(matthew 7:14)

there is a gate
and then a way
let us not
confuse the two

we enter
by the narrow gate
and then travel
the hard way
that leads to life

i suppose
we are noble enough
or brave enough
or crazy enough
to actually choose
this hard way

but sometimes
the hard way
chooses us
we are neither asked
nor consulted

and when it does
choose us
there is no escape
there is only
a choice
to resist or embrace
the way upon which
we find ourselves

leads to anger
and bitterness
and embracing
leads to life
which will i choose
i choose life

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Journey to the Cross

If you are looking for a companion for Lent (for yourself, your family, your friends, your staff, etc.), my Lenten devotional guide Journey to the Cross is available on Amazon.  Spread the word.  This year, Lent begins on February 14 (Ash Wednesday).