Becoming The Most Humble Person In The World

How To Win Gold At The Humility Olympics

There’s one verse in the Bible that has always made me laugh. It’s found in the Old Testament, in a book called Numbers. Strange name for a book, I realize, but it’s in there. Check it out yourself. Anyway, in chapter twelve of Numbers, verse three, it reads: “Now Moses was a very humble man, […]

Three Mile an Hour Jesus

Why God’s Speed Always Trumps Our Speed

You wouldn’t know it by looking at me but I’m a creature of habit. Every morning for the last 10 years or so I’ve had the same breakfast everyday — instant oatmeal. Most people assume I’m a Canadian bacon and tomato juice kinda guy, but I’m not. Sometimes you’ll catch me taking a walk on […]

I Have a PhD in Sarcasm (And Why That’s A Terrible Thing)

2003 was not a good driving year for yours truly. I received three speeding tickets in nine months. My family will tell you it was four, but that last one didn’t count because I went to the judge and groveled and got him to dismiss it. So technically it was only three. That third ticket, […]

Faith

An Idiot’s Guide To What We Ought To Trust The Most

The entire foundation of modern science is built upon what we can experience through our five senses—what we can see, taste, touch, smell, and hear. Because of this, many scientists (and people who trust a purely scientific interpretation of the world) only trust what they can pick up with their hands, see under a microscope, reproduce […]

poolofbethesda

In Love’s Service

Thornton Wilder’s short play “The Angel That Troubled the Waters,” is based on a tradition described in the Bible in John 5. In the city of Jerusalem was a pool of water known as the Pool of Bethesda. According to the tradition, from time to time an angel came down to stir up the water, […]

Grow old together

Grow Old Together

This week I read the story of Adele Gaboury, a woman not unlike many of our neighbors. “It can never be said that Adele Gaboury’s neighbors were less than responsible. When her front lawn grew hip-high, they had a local boy mow it down. When her pipes froze and burst, they had the water turned […]

Blessed Are The Poor (1)

Blessed Are The Poor

One doesn’t have to read very far in the gospels to realize that the poor had a special place in the heart of Jesus. In his very first public sermon, Jesus stated that the poor would be a priority in his ministry: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me because he has anointed me […]

overcoming grief

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 […]