Good Teachers…

Ordination2 We just celebrated an ordination of a young woman that grew up here in FCBC. What really impressed me was the women that showed up to support her ordination, to gather about her and lift this woman up to God. Which brought to mind a statement from Henri Nouwen.

He stated in his book Reaching Out, “If there were no students constantly asking for good teachers, there would be no good teachers. The same is true for spiritual guides. There are many men and women with great spiritual sensitivity whose talents remain dormant because we do not make an appeal to them.”

Take seriously your call to more intimacy with our Savior. Part of doing so is finding a companion to walk with you into the silence. Don’t hesitate to email, call or even write me for information on spiritual direction. You can even find more details at or

See you on the path.

In the Dark…


I was spending some time in silence in our sanctuary. At the front is a stained glass window that depicts the resurrection and a cross forms part of the support structure and then another cross hangs in front over the baptistery. Thing is…when the glass is lit you can’t really focus on the cross. Yet, as I was sitting there in silence and contemplating I realized this fact…sometimes it needs to be dark to really recognize God’s presence in our lives.

Now don’t get me wrong! I’m not saying go out into the world and seek things that are dark. But rather sometimes we must walk through darkness and as we do so, if we keep our eyes on the cross, we can move into the light. St. John of the Cross wrote a poem called, “On a Dark Night,” which captures some of what I’m attempting to communicate.

Oh, night that guided me, Oh, night more lovely than the dawn, Oh, night that joined Beloved with lover, Lover transformed in the Beloved!

Take some time today and let the silence move you deeper into your walk with Christ. He will journey with you no matter how deep the darkness may seem. He will bring you into the light of His love and into the companionship of others.

Check out my other page: for information on spiritual direction. See you on the path…


img_3921I was reading Henri Nouwen’s Book, Reaching Out and was impacted by this statement regarding prayer. He notes,   “…three ‘rules’ are always observed: a contemplative reading of the Word of God, a silent listening to the voice of God, and a trusting obedience to a spiritual guide,” (p. 135). He goes on to say, “Without the Bible, without silent time and without someone to direct us, finding our own way to God is very hard and practically impossible.”

I have to say after forty years of ministry and as a Baptist I’ve come to appreciate what Nouwen is saying. The Word of God, with the Holy Spirit,  is the foundation, the root of our coming to know and love our God and Savior. Yet, this requires not just reading but also sitting with God’s Word and most of all listening (in silence). Then sharing those words and experiences with a spiritual director, a brother or sister in Christ.

Why this took me so long to come to understand and enjoy is hard for me to grasp. But…I am in the right place and the right time to enjoy sitting with my God letting the “silence move me” closer into a deeper relationship. I would encourage every believer to find a spiritual director and experience this as well.

If you ever need help doing so give me a call.



Spiritual Direction

I finished one year of study, meditation, contemplation and being directed and directing with the Center Quest school of spiritual direction. Was one of the most spiritually maturing experiences of my life. As I draw near to retirement it seems God has opened a new avenue of service as a spiritual director. I continue to ask God to make me more certain of my new purpose. Keep me in prayer and if you have ever been interested in Discernment and spiritual Direction give me a call. Would be an honor to journey with you.

Washed Away…Rejoice!

mud We had quite a rain storm with flooded streets and mud all around. I was attempting to get into my car when I looked up and there it was…a rainbow! Wasn’t terribly bright was rather subdued. But that didn’t matter the message was there just the same.

Fourth-century bishop Gregory of Nyssa wrote, “God has imprinted the image of good things of His own nature on creation. But, sin in spreading out over the divine likeness, has caused this good to disappear, covering it with shameful garments. But if by life rightly led, you washed  away the mud that has been put on your heart, the Godlike beauty will again shine in you.”

Today why not shine! Let the mud of anger, resentment, jealousy and depression just wash away. Let God’s light shine through you this day. He loves you, He likes you. We are His children rejoice!

As you walk the path today remember you are forgiven. So…maybe today is the day you invite someone back into your life. Invite them to church knowing that we, you and I, ourselves would be lost without His grace.



“Reflecting the Lord’s Glory?”

reflectI was at the coast last week and ate lunch on a pier near Avila Beach California. The restaurant has tables that you can peer through and see the water beneath. They accomplish this by use of mirrors to reflect the surface below. Very unique but not very exciting since the sea life didn’t cooperate. All that could be seen was the encrusted pilings.

Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 3:18, “And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”

But do we? Are we a living advertisement for our Savior? Are we a loving reflection of His grace? Or do we stomp through life grumping and griping about our day looking and sounding like a crusty old stick in the mud? Stop! Think about what you are reflecting to the world.

Fourth-century preacher John Chrysostom wrote, “This is the rule of most perfect Christianity, its most exact definition, its highest point, namely, the seeking of the common good. For nothing can so make a person an imitator of Christ as caring for his neighbors.”

On the path today care for someone. Pause and reflect upon God’s love for you which then translates to others. Don’t know about you but I really don’t want to turn into an encrusted old saint stuck in my ways. Please dear God help me reflect your grace. God bless your walk today.


“Jump Up…”

pathFor my morning devotion I was reading Matthew 9: 1-9 in The Living Bible. I was struck by the phrase, “…jumped up and left!” When they bring the man on his mat to be healed Jesus heals him and tells him to go home. The Bible says, “…he jumped up and left.” Then Jesus sees Mathew the tax collector and calls him as his disciple. The Scripture notes, “Matthew jumped up and went.”

Thomas Merton wrote, “There is, in a word, nothing comfortable about the Bible-until we manage to get so used to it that we make it comfortable then we are perhaps too used to it and too at home in it. Let us not be too sure we know the Bible…just because we have learned not to have problems with it. Have we perhaps learned…not to really pay attention to it? Have we ceased to question the book and be questioned by it?”

Father, as I contemplated scripture this morning I was confronted by the urgency of the Bible. I was made uncomfortable by the need for speed. I could hear you saying, “Danny, quit lying down, get up and move. Why are you still sitting there?” Time to “..jump up and serve. Someone is hurting. Someone is crying, someone is in pain and needs a Savior. Why? Because you are still sitting there.”

Dear God, when someone hungers, make it our response to serve a meal spiritual and physical. When one of us is displaced, make it our urgency to house. Dear God help us to move today and stand with our brother and sister in pain. May we find peace in the urgency to bring others to you. Amen.

Get up and move on the path today. What re you doing still sitting there?


Time to Prepare…

Zach Well I’ve started again. Cutting some blocks for our Lenten series. My wife thinks I’m a little crazy to go through so much work for such a few weeks. To be honest most people just don’t appreciate the process. But…that’s not why I do it. For me its a time to consider God’s word, to pray about what I read in the Scriptures, to meditate on those words, then contemplate my relationship to God through those meditative thoughts and finally cut to the center and find direction.

This morning I was reading from Genesis 1:3-5 in the Living Bible, Then God said, “Let there be light.” And light appeared. And God was please with it, and divided the light from the darkness. So he let it shine for awhile, and then there was darkness.

Obviously God was creating a woodblock series. Just kidding. But what really caught my attention was that phrase, “…he let the it shine for awhile, and then there was darkness.” Let’s be honest people. You only have a short period to walk in God’s way. To share in His creation, to tell someone the good news of a risen Savior. So…enjoy the walk today. Share with a friend or neighbor how you are preparing for that day you walk the path in heaven. Don’t delay for darkness is always a reality.

Dear God thank you for being our creator and redeemer. Help us to prepare and spread the good news about the path. Amen.

Wait! Don’t Go….

converseWe just had our annual meeting at FCBC. Now for you who don’t know what the means here is an explanation. Our board of deacons presents the budget for the year and the membership votes for, against, or abstains. The board works hard at reviewing numbers, costs, and tries to anticipate what will come  our way in the new year. Have to say they do a great job! (If interested the budget passed).

Now as part of this process I write briefly about the past twelve months, what I see as positive and negative from my perspective. This time I noted that possibly in three years I will be considering retirement. Not a soul said anything about it after the meeting. But…wow the emails started coming not just from the church family but some from the broader community as well. Here is a brief list, “You can’t go. Can’t believe the deacons would allow it. Why are you abandoning us? You aren’t that old. What will you do with your time? You would miss us.  You were the pastor for my daughter’s wedding and presided over my father’s and grandfather’s funerals. You just can’t go. Nope, there is  no debate.”

I really appreciate such comments but I’m sure there were others who thought , “Wow about time.” But just didn’t write it out. Yet, honestly we all realize there are realities to life. At some point I will have to go.

For Christmas I got a new pair of Converse. Now I love these shoes! Have ever since I was a kid. Problem is I’m really type A when it comes to keeping them clean. Probably because when young they were expensive and I was expected to care for them. No matter how rough they looked you lived with them until… just maybe you got another pair. So…I  work really hard at keeping the white parts white. Every time I wear them out comes the rag and they get a complete cleaning! But heres the thing…no matter how hard I try after a year of life no matter how diligent they start to look a little dingy.

Now I’m not saying I’m looking the worse for wear. But there does come a time when you say, I sure would like a new pair of converse. Ones with new skills, new gifts, a new direction. (You get I’m talking about me and not shoes now right?)

Here is my point. Thank you to all you who wrote and said, “not yet.” The reality is I’m not done quite yet. I still have a race to run but its all about timing, its all about God’s direction. Won’t hang the converse up this time, still have a path to walk with you. But…well you know.

Dear God, when we weary of the journey, strengthen us by your Spirit to imagine new heavens and a new earth. Keep me on the path. Amen.