O Lord, I have always found you closer in the light streaming through branches than through stained glass, in the sound of leaves underfoot than the harmonies of organ, in the scent of humus and moss than incense on the altar. Why, then, do I neglect to come here, into this first chapel, first sanctuary […]Read More Nearer, My God, to Thee
On Christmas Eve, 1776, my great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather, Joshua Davis, purchased some land south of Aycock Swamp in what is now Wayne County, NC. The American revolution had begun, and there was no way of knowing when or how it would end. In 1781, General Cornwallis marched his troops from Wilmington into Virginia, towards what would be […]Read More The Care of Creation
Last year, our dog, Sonny, was put down. It was not an easy choice to make. Ever since, my kids have been asking for a new pet. Some days they want a new dog, other days a cat. They’ve asked for pet birds, pet bunnies, even a pet turtle. I can understand that; when I […]Read More When Christians Dominate
“The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world and its inhabitants too. Because God is the one who established it on the seas; God set it firmly on the waters.” -Psalm 24: 1-2 (CEB) Happy Earth Day! The first Earth Day was the brainchild of […]Read More Happy Earth Day
Granddaddy was raised in a family that was not very affectionate. He did not often hear the words, “I love you,” growing up, and there wasn’t much tenderness in his family. When he married my grandmother and became a father, he had a lot to learn in that department. He often struggled to show his […]Read More What Granddaddy Shared with Me
Recently I was privileged to be in a room with several other Christians who care about this earth, God’s Creation, and want to do something about it. One of the members of our team is a young man who just turned 18. It’s easy to dismiss someone so young, but he used a phrase that […]Read More Several Small Steps: How to start fighting climate change in local churches (and at home).
I have often said that you cannot write a job description for a pastor. In the seven years now that I have been in pastoral ministry, I have been with families as their loved ones passed from this world into the next, I have played games and made crafts with kids, I have stirred stew […]Read More Saving Souls or Saving Bees?
I hate being called an environmentalist. I avoid using the word “environment.” The phrase “climate change” is not in my lexicon. At least at church, that is. Why? Because I have found that these and others like them elicit a knee jerk response from a good number of people in my church. When I’m labeled […]Read More How to Talk About the Environment in Your Church
My wife realized early on in our relationship, with a degree of horror, that I am ignorant about art. When we have gone to the local art museum, she has raved about the techniques and the periods and the passion of artists, while I have looked on these same works and thought, “That sure is […]Read More God Created a Job
I was a quiet and well-behaved kid, for the most part. I kept to myself, read a lot of books, and always tried to follow the rules. It was out of character for me, then, and quite audacious, when I told my second-grade teacher, “You’re wrong about that.” It was in a science lesson […]Read More Christians Should Care About Creation