Showing posts from March, 2022

No Fishing Allowed

It grieves me when Christians post “exposés” of ministries that have been a blessing to me. I avoid reading and watching diatribes from critics who disagree with particular doctrines. Sometimes they are from former associates and congregation members who didn’t like things they saw. Keep in mind that no church or preacher is perfect. Every denomination and stream of ministry probably had defectors because of leaders and staff members that went astray. Even Jesus had one that became an apostate (Judas Iscariot).  During  almost four decades, Hillsong Church grew to a reported 150,000 members in 30 countries. Unfortunately, they have gone through questionable practices and recent scandals. The pastor of their New York City branch got fired in 2020 following an adulterous affair. Earlier this week, founder Brain Houston resigned as Global Senior Pastor for breaching the “Pastor's Code of Conduct” involving separate incidents with two women. One resulted from “the consumption of an

Ode to an Office

Before becoming a Christian (yesterday was the 31st anniversary of my salvation), I frequently went to nightclubs. By 1991, I already cut back on that. Besides the often negative lyrics in the songs played, I didn’t like dealing with smoke-filled rooms. Although my spiritual life matured, I missed having a place just to hang out.  Then in 1999, I started going to Caribou Coffee, a chain of coffeehouses based in Minnesota. A friend and I regularly met at one in Maple Grove. At the time, it was the closest Caribou to our church . My friend referred to it as our “office.” We studied our Bibles there while drinking coffee. It was also a mission field. We often led people to the Lord in the area.  Until then, I hadn’t been much of a coffee drinker . Gradually, I developed a taste for Caribou Coffee. One thing I like about going there is free refills of their Coffee of the Day while you remain in the store. I prefer arriving in the morning. They start the day with two choices of regular c

What Happened to the Peters Brothers?

During my junior year of high school (1980-81), my best friend David told me about two St. Paul-based preachers warning about the dangers of rock music. Dan and Steve Peters received national attention with seminars that sometimes concluded with young people burning their records. I would learn more about the Peters Brothers through articles published in Rolling Stone magazine and my high school newspaper. Another friend loaned me a cassette tape of their seminar. As a rock music fan, I didn’t want to believe what I heard. In 1984, I attended my first Peters Brothers seminar at Moorhead State University (where I was a Music Industry major). Dan and Steve showed photos, album covers, and song lyrics from well-known rock stars. They also quoted Scripture showing why these musicians promoted ungodly ideas. Although I agreed with their disapproval of satanic album covers and explicit lyrics, I thought parts of the seminar lacked credibility, such as examples of “backward masking” that we

Don’t Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Growing up, I enjoyed watching baseball games on television, memorizing the statistics of various players, and collecting baseball cards. During the 1970s, I endured many mediocre and losing seasons by my favorite team: the Minnesota Twins. After I moved to Minneapolis, the Twins won the World Series in 1987 and 1991. I went to a few Twins games, briefly worked at a concession stand in the Metrodome, and attended a celebration at the stadium after the team won one of their American League pennants. It was an exciting time to be a Twins fan. My interest in baseball has since declined. One reason was a 1994 players’ strike which dragged on into 1995. Around this time, Major League Baseball added wild card teams to the postseason. I’ve never agreed with this. If a team isn’t good enough to win its division, then it shouldn’t have the opportunity to be declared “World Champions.” It cheapens the need to play well enough the whole season. The NFL , NBA, and NHL have approximately half thei