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Bishop's Blog Archive


Spiritual Warfare, the Crisis on the Border and the Wrestling of My Heart ©

John Wimber There is an urban legend about John Wimber, founder of the Vineyard Church movement and professor at Fuller Theological Seminary. The story goes that after his conversion to Christ, he started to attend a local church in his area. ...

A New Thing ©

After the called General Conference in St. Louis, I (along with others) was asked to write a brief article for Circuit Rider, an online magazine put out by The United Methodist Publishing House. The writers were asked specifically to not re-argue or...

Living the Christian Difference ©

As we watched the evening news together (as is our custom), Jolynn and I were sitting together on the couch holding hands. Halfway through the broadcast, Jolynn shook her hand loose and asked, “Are you upset?” Her question was spot on. I was ...

Reclaiming the Heart of the Wesleyan Way #14 ©

Practical Christianity Last Saturday I was sitting at the First Steps: How to Big Your WIG Journey gathering in the Fellowship Hall of University UMC. The gathering wrestled with the goal of how we reach out to a new generation. The WIG (Wildly I...

Iona Interlude ©

I am pausing my “Reclaiming the Heart of the Wesleyan Way” series to share a brief word on a pilgrimage in leadership development. By the time this is posted, I will be in Iona, Scotland with a group of young adults from the Central Texas Conference....

Reflections on the Visit of a Holy Man

I confess to being late to work this morning. I stayed extra half hour at home to watch the arrival of Pope Francis at the White House. The crowds gathered, the pomp and ceremony; the gravitas of press coverage, and the respectful public speeches - ...

A Call for Prayer and Healing from the Council of Bishops

Once a quadrennium, the United Methodist Council of Bishops meets intentionally outside the United States, which reminds us that we are truly a worldwide church. As we gather in Berlin, I ask for your prayers, especially for those Christians ...

Racism is Real!

In preparation for Thanksgiving my wife has decorated our house beautifully. If you step into the living room and look at the mantle over the fireplace, four elegant figurines peer out from the fall foliage. On the left are the classic looking ...

Facing the Demons

The words are rightly well known. They are oft uttered in heartfelt worship. Any genuine life of intentional discipleship rides on the wings of its application. What words are those? “But if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us ...

Critical Behavioral Change

Common wisdom is that we change our beliefs, then our actions follow. Reality is often different. Most of us act our way into a new way of thinking and believing. If we push hard on this distinction, the truth emerges that it is a both/and not an ...

CORE STRATEGIES: Wesleyan Spirituality and Theology

My recent participation in the 13th Oxford Institute for Wesley Studies has given me much reason to pause and reflect on the importance of our Wesleyan essence. With this blog I am beginning a series of blogs on core strategies of the Central Texas ...

Representative Granger Working with Imagine No Malaria

Tuesday, September 3rd I had the privilege of visiting with Representative Kay Granger, Congresswoman for the 12th District in which I reside. On behalf of the other bishops of Texas (Bledsoe, Dorff, Huie and McKee) along with Bishop Tom Bickerton ...

The Great 50 Days

Easter is over. As a pastor for 30 years I am aware of a sense of the life of the church moving on. We start looking towards the end of school, graduations, Mother’s Day, summer activities, Vacation Bible School, mission trips - the list is almost ...

Outwardly Focused & Upwardly Witnessing

Allow me to begin with a story that comes from Pastor Steve Nance at Groesbeck First UMC. “The lady that runs our local housing authority office called the church some time back asking for clothing for one of her clients. She called nine local ...

Saint Nicholas Takes a Knee

A reprint of a treasured work of art hangs just inside my office entrance. It is Paolo Veronese’s painting of The Consecration of Saint Nicholas. I beheld the original in The National Gallery, London, England, while on renewal leave last ...

The Outlandish Claims of Radical Orthodoxy

It is right there in the great opening overture of the Gospel of John. “The Word became flesh and made his home among us. We have seen his glory, glory like that of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). The phrase translated ...

An Arch of Holiness

Few secular books have stayed with me at the depth of Robert Quinn’s Deep Change. I first read it over 11 years ago and still find myself going back to it for insight. Quinn’s central thesis is simple. We face the choice between deep change or slow ...