Overcoming Grief (1)

Overcoming Grief

During my first year of college a life-long family friend and mentor tragically lost his son. Separated by distance, I assumed that his Christian friends, the staff at his church, and his Sunday school class would step in and wrap their arms around him and his wife. Needless to say I was surprised, one year […]

And You Think Your Job is Bad?

And You Think Your Job Is Bad?

I’ve had my fair share of strange jobs. Going through graduate school I picked weeds for a reclusive German heiress. It paid well, about $20 an hour I remember, but it was stressful. Every 20 minutes she’d come out and yell, “Youz doing itz all wrongz!” The hardest job I ever had was the summer […]

TeachingOurMoodsWhereToGetOff

Teaching Our Moods Where To Get Off

One day in college I went to speak with a professor with whom I had a close relationship. “I’m struggling with my faith right now,” I said in frustration. I explained that in the last few days everything seemed gray. Questions were plaguing my mind. Life seemed more difficult than usual. My professor smiled and […]

The Promise of New Bodies

Why You Should Tell Lies

On July 24, 2000, I told a bald-faced lie. Our family was at Walt Disney World’s Epcot Center for a vacation, and after paying for our tickets we were told by a security guard that we wouldn’t be allowed to bring our baby stroller inside. The temperature that day was ninety-nine degrees; our youngest daughter was […]

What to do when Prayer Seems Pointless

What To Do When Prayer Seems Pointless

One of the hardest things about a recent discouraging stretch in my life was the way proven spiritual practices completely broke down for me. When I prayed, I felt nothing. When I read the Bible, it might as well have been Tolstoy’s War and Peace. Everything seemed flat. This really worried me, not so much […]

Marriages That Last

Here’s The Number 1 Way To Predict If Your Marriage Will Last

A man and a woman were involved in a car crash and both of their cars were demolished. After their cars came to a grinding halt, both of them miraculously walked out from their cars, neither one of them were hurt in any way. After both of them crawled out of their cars the women […]

Francis Chan

Do Something That Scares You (or My Car Ride With Francis Chan)

Recently I had a dream that I was sitting in the back seat of a car driving around the streets of 1950ish Clearwater, Florida. Everything I saw in my dream had a yellowish tint to it, like the way the Cohen brothers filmed the movie “No Country For Old Men.” At some point in my […]

Atheist for President

Why I Would Vote For An Atheist For President

Given the choice between a Christian who leads like an atheist and an atheist who leads like a Christian, it’s clear which one I’d vote for 100% of the time. Ross Perot joked that whenever someone tells him they’re a Christian, he immediately puts his hand over his wallet. In my mind, whenever someone touts […]

White Christians don't get it

Why White Christians Just Don’t Get It

[Finally, after a long break, I am re-launching my BrianJones.com blog and its e-newsletter called Non-Religious Devotional Thoughts. It will be sent out via email every Tuesday. I hope you find the content both encouraging and challenging. Here goes…] If you’re angrier with rioters for looting and pillaging in the aftermath of an unarmed black […]

Skipping Church

Spit Out That Lotus Plant (or thoughts on why going to church matters)

A few Saturday nights ago I texted my Worship Pastor: Me: “Been outside yet? Stunning. 15 people in church tomorrow.” Worship Pastor: “6 of them will be staff. ☺” Me: “Can you blame them? It’s gorgeous.” In Philadelphia there’s a day that occurs in the Spring that clearly marks the end of winter. You know […]

Immature Christians

I’m Not Being Fed (and Other Stupid Things Christians Say)

If forced to make the decision, our church from day one has decided that we will offend the self-seeking Christian before the spiritually seeking non-Christian. I personally believe you can only strategically choose to offend one of those groups. Some churches are purposely designed to offend the spiritually seeking non-Christian, whether they describe it that […]

was jesus a man

Was Jesus A Man That The Early Church Turned Into A God?

Every Easter the modern print media, trying to bolster sales, publishes “new” and “shocking” “evidence” that claims that Jesus wasn’t who he really said he was. Did you see their magazines at the grocery checkout right before Easter? This year it’s the claim that Jesus had a wife, based off of a manuscript three centuries […]

Eucharist

3 Reasons I Don’t Discourage Non-Christians From Taking The Lord’s Supper

Every few months or so an angry churched visitor storms the stage after the service demanding an explanation for why I didn’t provide a detailed warning to non-Christians to not take the Lord’s Supper. With a scowl on their face they’ll wildly start flipping through the pages of their Bibles until their finger lands on […]

Greek text gospels

Do Contradictions In The Gospels Make Them Untrustworthy?

Yesterday a friend emailed me a great question… Just read (most of) the comments on your 10 Ways To Stop Feeling Guilty Your Friend Is Going To Hell post. Wow. Holy crap. Question: At one point someone said the gospels were unreliable because of all the contradictions, and you responded by saying… “No, I disagree. I […]

save your marriage

Five Minutes That Will Save Your Marriage

There are always two kinds of divorces – ones that people see coming a mile away, and those that completely blindside people. Divorces that people see coming a mile away are usually preceded by: Getting married too quickly without getting all the issues out on the table (ex. character flaws, addictions, hurtful relational patterns, previous family […]

Praying before meals

Don’t Pray Before Meals? Read This.

3,743 Days. That’s how many days I estimate our family prayed together at the dinner table when I was a kid. Calculating that number was surprisingly easy. I took out Friday nights because that was pizza night. Everyone was responsible for praying his or her own prayer on the way to sacking dad as he […]

bible study

You Don’t Have To Be A Scholar To Read The Bible With Confidence

Professor Tom Friskney’s first words to us in my undergraduate Biblical Interpretation class were, God has communicated through his word and he expects to be understood. Those words, and the man himself, made an indelible impression on me. Internet Confusion I’m mindful of what Professor Friskney said every time I watch people engage in discussions on […]

1967 Baby Brian

How My Childhood Church Affected My Life

Eastpointe Christian Church, the church I attended from birth till high school graduation, recently celebrated their 60th anniversary. They asked me to share how the church impacted my life. Here’s what I shared with them… One of my favorite memories of Eastpointe is walking into church and knowing that Bob Berridge would be sitting on […]

Senior Pastors

New Website For Senior Pastors!

If you are a Senior Pastor in a church, I wanted to let you know that I have launched a website designed specifically with you in mind. It’s called Senior Pastor Central, and it’s designed to be a coaching site for servant leaders trying to lead their churches to break through the 100, 200, 400, […]

adam and eve

Do You Believe Adam And Eve Were Actual Historical People?

One of the important questions being discussed by theologians today is what we should do with Genesis 1 and 2. Were Adam and Eve actual people, or were they meant to be archetypes of sort? Before 1859, the year Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species was published, this was a discussion in which few people engaged. […]

weird bible verses

Weird Bible Verses: Did Angels Have Sex With Humans? (Genesis 6:1-4)

Recently a friend shared that he was having a conversation with a skeptic who was questioning the Bible’s reliability. His friend said he couldn’t trust the Bible because of ridiculous passages like Genesis 6:1-4, 1 When human beings began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, 2 the sons […]