October 17, 2017

About Chaplain Mike

Chaplain Mike works with a hospice organization in central Indiana. He has been in pastoral ministry since 1978, serving in churches in Maryland, Vermont, Illinois, and Indiana before moving into chaplaincy work. He is married to a wonderful gifted wife, Gail, and they have four children and three grandchildren. He thinks baseball is the greatest game ever invented, suffers annually as a Chicago Cubs fan, and is looking forward to putting on a cap again this spring to coach his grandson's Little League team. He loves a wide variety of music, spends way too much money on books, is happy to live in a place where there are four seasons, and is a "true believer" in Apple computers, having used them since 1988. Luther is his favorite theologian, Bach his favorite composer, James Taylor his favorite singer-songwriter, Chicago his favorite city, and hiking his favorite form of exercise. He would love to do more with photography and dreams of having a place in the mountains of Arizona some day. His heart has been captured by the grace of God in Jesus Christ and considers himself a post-evangelical disciple seeking a Jesus-shaped life and hoping to help the church do the same. He is forever grateful to his friend, Michael Spencer, for giving him an opportunity to write for Internet Monk.

Wisdom for Ordinary Time: Eugene Peterson on Abraham, the “Friend of God”

During Ordinary Time this year, I am reading and meditating on Eugene Peterson’s book, As Kingfishers Catch Fire: A Conversation on the Ways of God Formed by the Words of God. It captures sermons from Peterson’s twenty-nine years as a pastor in Bel Air, Maryland. Occasionally during this season I am posting some reflections on the […]

11th Sunday after Trinity: Pic & Cantata of the Week

(Click on picture for larger image) • • • The Gospel text for this Sunday in Bach’s day was the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican (Luke 18: 9-14). To help us meditate on this story of penitence and forgiveness, this warning against self-justification and spiritual pride, we present a lovely tenor aria from […]

The IM Saturday Brunch: August 26, 2017

THE INTERNET MONK SATURDAY BRUNCH ”It is talk-compelling. It puts you in a good temper, it makes you satisfied with yourself and your fellow beings, it sweeps away the worries and cobwebs of the week.” Sorry to keep harping on the solar eclipse from last Monday, but there remain a few silly examples of Christians […]

Ordinary Time Bible Study: Philippians — Friends in the Gospel (10)

Ordinary Time Bible Study Philippians: Friends in the Gospel Study Ten: Humility We Must Sing to Imagine • • • There are some things that can, perhaps, only be said in poetry, and perhaps this [Phil 2:5-11] is one of them. • Tom Wright PHILIPPIANS 2:5-11 Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. […]

What would it be like…?

What would it be like if we as Christians believed that the Bible was written for us: …to encourage us to think more, not less? …to help us develop wisdom so that we can come to conclusions and make decisions maturely on our own, not simply give us answers and rules to follow? …to engage […]

The Use of the Bible in Pastoral Care (4)

The Use of the Bible in Pastoral Care Part Four: Why do we have the Bible in the first place? What is the Bible? And what is it for? Yesterday’s post highlighted the fact that I have come a long way from some of the common evangelical understandings about how to answer those questions. The […]

Losers Who Just Keep Walking

Triumphalism is a terrible thing. I heard an unexpected sermon yesterday from a guest preacher in a church we visited. The church is a traditional old Midwest Protestant congregation, not known, at least in recent memory, for their religious enthusiasm or expressiveness. Sunday’s speaker was from a quite different ecclesiastical milieu. The congregation seemed to […]

10th Sunday after Trinity: Pic & Cantata of the Week

(Click on picture for larger image) • • • Apparently, this time of year is a season in which apocalyptic themes take hold. With this year’s solar eclipse, our minds are focused on these themes as well, and Bach gives us music by which to meditate on the upheavals that shake our universe and cause […]

The IM Saturday Brunch: August 19, 2017 (Joel 2:31 Edition)

THE INTERNET MONK SATURDAY BRUNCH ”It is talk-compelling. It puts you in a good temper, it makes you satisfied with yourself and your fellow beings, it sweeps away the worries and cobwebs of the week.” The sun will be turned to darkness…before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. • Joel […]

Ordinary Time Bible Study: Philippians — Friends in the Gospel (9)

Ordinary Time Bible Study Philippians: Friends in the Gospel Study Nine Note: When passages are quoted at the beginning of new sections, I will be using The Message translation because of its conversational, friendly tone. You can compare this version with others, as well as have access to Gordon Fee’s commentary, at Bible Gateway. ✥ There’s an […]