BridgeWay Blog

Growth vs. Comfort

Two weeks ago I bought a pair of Birkenstocks. They are a quintessential component of any Oregonian’s wardrobe. They are ugly and also uncomfortable. In fact, the salesperson told me that the first forty hours of wear could be outright painful. Quite the sales pitch....

Who Do You Love?  Are You For Sure?

The 80s and the 90s were both great decades for music (depending on who you ask), and both eras have enjoyed a little resurgence in style recently.  If you are a fan of either of these decades of music, or if you loathe them, it’s hard to deny that lyrics and melodies...

$14,830 Raised For Hurricane Relief

Our thanks to all of you who gave generously to support hurricane relief in south Texas! Gifts dedicated to this effort totaled $8330. In addition, our missions committee has earmarked $6000 from the missions budget for this purpose. This means that BridgeWay will be...

Hurricane Harvey Offering

This Sunday, 25% of our regular offering will be dedicated to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. If you have already written your offering check and want to do more to help, please feel free to write another check and drop it in the offering basket. You can also give to...

Hurricane Harvey Relief

The recent devastation in south Texas calls for us as Christians to respond to those in need. This tragedy will affect lives for years to come. At BridgeWay, we are suggesting the following four options for you to as you pray over how to assist: 1.      Financial...

Get Connected!

In their book Next Door As It Is in Heaven, Lance Ford and Brad Briscoe discuss the profound loneliness people are experiencing in our world. They make the point that loneliness often causes us to feel that we have little value. They also point out that we often make...

What If God Were On Facebook?

What if God were on Facebook? What would his page look like? And what if he approached his profile the way most us do? The Deity Relationship status: Triune and serenely blissful Number of friends: Only I know Unfriended: List currently blocked Photos: None available...

Life Is A Testimony

As we conclude our look at the life of the apostle Paul, let me offer one final observation. Some people scratch their heads over Acts 27 and 28. These chapters detail Paul’s trip to Rome to stand trial before Nero. Luke chronicles the voyage, the storms, and the...

Freedom From Idols

How do Silicon Valley tech gurus design a successful app, an app that will hook consumers and then keep them hooked so they keep coming back to the app? Some app designers call this process "captology," or the art of capturing people's attention and making it hard for...

America’s Epitaph

T.S. Eliot wrote this epitaph over America: “And the wind shall say: 'Here were decent godless people \ Their only monument the asphalt road \ And a thousand lost golf balls." I’m not ready to write off America, but I do see serious signs of cultural disintegration in...

Paul’s Privilege

John McRay writes, “Paul may have spent as much as 25 percent of his time as a missionary in prison. We know of his brief lock-up in Philippi, two years' incarceration in Caesarea, and at least another two in Rome. Yet Paul says he experienced "far more...

Paul: A Man on a Mission

Other than Jesus Christ, it could be argued that no one has ever changed the world more than the apostle Paul. Paul was a man obsessed! He went from being Christianity’s greatest opponent to Christianity’s greatest proponent. Paul was willing to go anywhere and do...

Permission to Fail

Failure is a part of life. We all do it from time to time and important lessons can be learned from failing. I get it! I don’t like to experience failure as much as the next person, but I can honestly say that through failure I have learned some incredible life...

Wonder Woman to the Rescue!

A new Wonder Woman movie is releasing in June, and my house is ready to take in some super-hero action.  Our family enjoys super-hero stories from movies, television, and comic books.  I think we can all agree that these stories are entertaining, and the heroes...

In Shame We Trust

Sitting in the hallway, watching the lines of students evacuate the building, I felt miserable. I knew I had made a terrible mistake, and that was now playing out in the wasting of all hundreds of people's time. Just when I thought I couldn't get any lower, a...

But If Not

One World War II historian wrote: “In early 1940, the British and their allies sent a force of some 350,000 men into the low countries of Europe to stem the tide of German advance into France, Belgium and Holland. Caught in a brilliant pincer movement by the invading...

People- The Heart & Soul of Ministry

Many years ago, I heard a pastor say, “If it were not for the people, I would love the ministry.” After my initial shock, I responded, “People are our ministry.” Maybe we should remember what Jesus said in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his one...

Resist Self-Help!

An article in New York magazine reports that the self-help movement has mushroomed into an "$11 billion industry dedicated to telling us how to improve our lives." The article observed: Today, there are at least 45,000 [books] in print of the optimize-everything cult...

The Master Weaver

In his book Jesus Among Other Gods, Ravi Zacharias tells the story about how God, the Master Weaver, sovereignly works to weave beauty into our lives as we respond to his will. During a trip to India, Zacharias noticed a father and son who were weaving some of the...

Baptism Readiness

Baptism Sunday is this Sunday! If you’ve never been baptized, let me encourage you to take this crucial step in your walk with God. Sometimes people ask me, how do I know if I’m ready to be baptized? I think there are a few helpful things to consider when a person is...

Easter Changes Everything!

Easter changes everything. Paul spends all of 1 Corinthians 15 affirming the significance of the resurrection. He argues that now life has meaning, because Christ is risen from the dead. “The perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with...

Shame & Your Relationship With God

  When you feel covered with shame, it’s important for you to remember four things about your relationship with God: You are created by God. The Bible says that when God created man, he created him in his own image, Genesis 1:27, 31. The psalmist says that God knit...

5 Apps for Kids

I hope you have had the chance to read my co-worker and friend Jenny LoBello’s blog from this past month. She shared some wonderful insight into some of the most dangerous apps for our kids that at first glance can seem totally fine! I loved reading her blog and if...

Bad News/Good News

Some bad news and some good news. First, the bad news. Less than half of American churchgoers plan to invite unchurched people to Easter worship service this year, a new survey found. Only one out of three active churchgoers (31 percent) said they would definitely...

Brokenness on the Chapel Steps: The Racial Divide

For nearly twenty years, I served at a church in a downtown area surrounded by many families in low socioeconomic situations. We often had trouble with children entering the building unsupervised. We would invite them to our services, but it seemed they only wanted to...

He Paid Our Debt

John Ortberg tells the following story: In May 2009, my family was in Azusa, California, because one of our kids was graduating from Azusa Pacific University. My wife, Nancy, was going to speak at the commencement ceremonies, so she and I were invited to a special...

Content In Every Circumstance

Thascius was anything but a Christian. He was born in AD 200 to a well-placed family of Carthage. He was classically educated, wealthy, a lawyer, an orator, and a pagan. Then everything changed. He decided at the age of forty-five to follow Christ. He changed his name...

What Has God Done For You Lately?

If you are a Christian, isn’t there supposed to be evidence of God working in your life?  Aren’t there supposed to be moments of great significance?  Life-changing stories of how everything turned around in an instant?  Aren’t Christians supposed to have dramatic...

Are You In A Hurry?

Half a century ago, an upholsterer from San Francisco made a curious discovery. He was called to a cardiologist's office to reupholster some chairs in the waiting room. When he looked at the furniture, he wondered immediately what was wrong with the patients. Only the...

Online Dangers: Tween & Teen App Guide

Online dangers are a real threat and can be easily accessed by children and teens. In my family after learning about these threats, we put some new boundaries in place to protect our children.  A few of these boundaries are: • No electronic devices without supervision...

Launch

  Mark Batterson writes: “On July 16, 1969, Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Buzz Aldrin climbed aboard Apollo 11 on Launch Pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center. The multistage rocket weighed 102,907 pounds, but it carried 5,625,000 pounds of propellant. Breaking...

The Church and the LGBTQ+ community

 (The first of a 2 part series on this topic. It is something my students always want to talk about, and it is something that we as the church tend to avoid or not talk about very often. So let's break the silence in a loving and humble way. I WELCOME your feedback...

Go and Tell!

As you read through the gospel of Mark, you will discover that Jesus often tells people not to advertise the news about him. He tells a healed leper not to tell anyone (Mark 1:43). He gives evil spirits strict orders not to tell who he is (Mark 3:12). He rises a girl...

The One Anothers

We just celebrated Valentine’s Day, a special time set aside to express love to family and friends. What would it look like if we truly loved the people we work with each day? I have been blessed to work with and lead some amazing people. My prayer has been, “Lord,...

God is Huge!

God is huge. He is at the highest height and the deepest low. The furthest galaxy discovered by spectroscopy is z8_GND_5296. 6. The galaxy is 13.8 billion light-years old, or 13.8 billion light-years away. Spatially speaking, it's the highest height. The deepest depth...

Parenting

Parenting is difficult! It is not always fun and it is just plain hard! I see so many power struggles with kids and parents today. Parents are at their wits end trying to get their kids to get their rooms clean, homework done, not to talk back and more. In addition to...

Selfie Life is a Dead End

One of the reasons the selfie culture is so problematic is that it thrives on comparison. We want to prove ourselves better than others or better-looking than others or smarter than others or richer than others. This is why people work overtime to produce an image...

New Testament Challenge

  I hope that you have accepted the “New Testament challenge,” to read through the New Testament in 2017. If you started in Matthew, you should be reading Matthew chapters 11-15 this week. This week’s readings include Matthew 12:31, where Jesus says, “And so I...

#DeathToSelfie

This shouldn't come as a surprise, but a new study reports self-regard, self-promotion, and plain old bragging are far more prominent in pop music than they were a quarter-century ago. The authors of the study note that, in 1990, blatant bragging was basically...

Five Steps to Start the New Year

At the beginning of each New Year, most of us are hopeful for a fresh start. Here are five simple steps to make 2017 the best! Celebrate That’s right, celebrate! Think back over the past twelve months and thank God for the victories He has allowed you to experience....

Reading the new Testament

I’m excited about the challenge of reading through the New Testament in 2017! As I’ve mentioned, you can read the entire New Testament by reading one chapter per day, 5 days a week. Nothing will contribute to your spiritual growth like reading the Bible and asking the...

The Bible Project

As we approach a new year, I’m encouraging every member at BridgeWay to read through the entire New Testament in 2017. Nothing will assist in your spiritual growth like reading and praying over the Word of God. Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light...

One Leper Returned!

Mark Buchanan told the conversion story of a woman named Wanda. She came to Christ after struggling with addictions in her life. Mark went on to tell the rest of her story: "Wanda did well for about eight months—got into Alpha and a 12-step group, got her kids back....

Pennies from Heaven

Mr. Otha Anders, of Ruston, Louisiana, spent 45 years bending down and collecting something most of us ignore—pennies. In October of 2015, the 73-year-old Anders, a supervisor for in-school suspended children, took them to his local bank—in 15 five-gallon jugs—and...

Are You A Real Follower?

Twitter, the social media platform where users compose messages of 140 characters or less, now hosts an impressive one billion user accounts. But whether even half that many people are actually using the service is another question. Some of these accounts might be...

Live for Christ, As You Go

A few weeks ago, there were pictures all over Facebook about a young man named Jason Cameron. The high school where he attended had a Hall of Fame during Homecoming Week and there was a special video shown of Jason. Here is his story: Jason Cameron was a young man who...

What Is Your House Built On?

David Gushee wrote a book called The Righteous Gentiles of the Holocaust. He studied people in Europe during WWII who rescued Jews from the Nazis. The rescuers often harbored the Jewish people at tremendous personal risk. If the rescuers were caught keeping Jews, they...

Are You A Distracted Parent?

Times have changed in parenting. When my daughter, who is now 22 was a baby, we did not have many of the conveniences that most parents have today. There was no cute little cover for the shopping cart to keep germs at bay. No Lysol wipes at the door. The seat was...

Curious, Convinced, or Committed?

Going all in for God means an uncompromising commitment to His will. But commitments are hard to come by these days. If you’re interested in being a vegetarian, but you’re concerned you might not be able to make the commitment, don’t worry. Now you can be a...

Are You Ready To Go All In?

Going “All In” means making the choice to bet everything you have on God! It means making the choice to follow Christ rather than following the world. Making wise decisions is critical to your future. A few years ago, a researcher asked 100 American and Japanese...

Be. Set. Free.

This past Sunday, I spoke about how Jesus sets you free from yourself and others, in order to accomplish His purpose through your life. If you missed it, you can check it out on our new BridgeWay Church App (found in the app-store) or our BridgeWayFM YouTube channel....

Reasons, Expectations, and Fruit

Last May, I made a trip to China for the very first time.  I had wanted to make the trip for awhile, but didn’t for reasons that seem pretty insignificant now that the trip is completed.  My family wouldn’t be able to make it 10 days without me. There was too much...

To the Himalayas and Back: A Mission Trip Story

Several years ago, a good friend of mine named Ed approached me about going on an Extreme Mission Trip to the Himalayan Mountains to reach a group of people in China who had never heard the Gospel. I prayed about it, and God did not tell me “no.” I had gone with Ed on...

Evangelized by the World

Alan Hirsch points out that sometimes instead of evangelizing the world, we are evangelized by the world. It’s discipleship in reverse. Rather than impacting our culture, the culture has an impact on us. Madison Avenue and the media work overtime to convince us to buy...

Let’s Start Talking: Alexa’s Story

Let's Start Talking provides an effective way to read the Bible with native people who are eager to practice English with an American.  While on a mission trip to Asia with LST, Alexa was one of my most challenging readers.  Her level of English often made our...

Pan’s Story: It’s A Family Thing!

What an incredible blessing it was to go to on a mission trip to Asia with Randi this year on a Let’s Start Talking project!  This was her third year and my first.  LST provides an effective way to read the Bible with native people who are eager to practice English...

Mission Trip: 8 new believers baptized!

What an incredible privilege it was to be in Asia again for my third trip in 2016! At the end of our second week, we witnessed the baptism of 8 new believers on June 9, 2016, including a lady who had read with Ernestine and Ron beforehand. One of those baptized was a...

Hanna’s Story of Hope

What an incredible blessing it was to go to Asia with Randi this year on a Let’s Start Talking project!  This was her third year and my first.  LST provides an effective way to read the Bible with native people who are eager to practice English with an American. Hanna...

The Battle Within….

We are in a battle……….a battle of the mind. So many in our world today struggle daily with thoughts of are they good enough, smart enough, pretty enough. Many of our young kids and teens are already struggling much more than you realize with trying to determine who...

#parentinggoals

What's the end goal of parenting?  Is that an easy answer for you? It's interesting to me how when I ask parents what their hopes and dreams are for their kids, they have answers, yet when you dive into the day to day of an average family's life, those answers seem to...

Time to Go to War

My brother-in-law is one of the best people you will ever meet.  We’ve been family for a long time and friends even longer.  Probably the biggest experience that we’ve shared together is music related.  We’ve been able to play music, record music, write music, and...

Community

Growing in Christ always requires community. Apart from others, we turn inward and fail to live out God’s will for our lives. A few years ago, Google released a database of over 5 million books published between 1500 and 2008. You can now type a search word into the...

It’s About Time! Part 2

As you read this blog school is back in session, and schedules are busier than ever. Let’s look further into Jesus’ time management style. Hopefully, we will learn some helpful tips along the way! Review of Part 1: Jesus lived life at a healthy “C” level which...

Be Together, Not the Same

Boys in the Boat is the thrilling true story of the 1936 University of Washington crew team. The team went from obscurity to a gold medal at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. They didn’t have the pedigree of crews from Yale, Harvard, and Princeton. They were kids raised on...

BridgeWay Student Ministry Ecuador Mission Trip

I was one of 18 people from BridgeWay who went to Quito, Ecuador on an evangelistic and humanitarian mission trip. We headed out on the twenty-first of July to begin what many of us would consider a life changing trip.        I believe one of the hardest things God...

Baptism Sunday

Baptism Sunday is coming up on August 21! That day we’ll baptize a number of people who have been considering this important commitment. Sometimes people ask me, “How do I know when I’m ready to be baptized?” Where baptism is concerned, your readiness depends on a...

David- Not Perfect but Forgiven

Recently, our church finished our annual Summer XP (kind of like a VBS on steroids). Each year, we pick one Bible character to study. This year it was David. All of the Bible is God-breathed and therefore we know that if it is in the Bible, it is important and God...

The Powerful and the Weak

What's the most powerful thing you've ever encountered? Something so powerful that it made your heart leap out of your chest as you came to grips with just how small you were in comparison to it? I want you to take a moment and get that picture into your head…. I can...

It’s About Time! Part 1

“Nobody can manage time. It keeps moving at a consistent rate, no matter what any of us does. What we manage is ourselves, our attitudes, boundaries, and cushions.”   - Breathless, Gary R. Collins Let’s take a look at Jesus and a parallel look at ourselves in the...

Heartbreaking News In Dallas

There’s heartbreaking news today as we learn of 12 Dallas police officers being shot, 5 of them fatally during a protest rally in downtown Dallas last night. This assault on those who risk their lives to preserve our freedom is shocking and repulsive. It’s a reminder...

How Children Become True Champions

  In his book Game On: The All-American Race to Make Champions of Our Children, Tom Farrey warns parents about the excessive pressure they can put on their kids to succeed. Farrey writes: There are 12-year-olds driving race cars. Eleven-year-olds are turning pro...

Overcome Sexual Sin

Studies show that pornography is an increasing challenge for many believers. This includes women, who may succumb to the temptation to lust. There’s a progressive nature to sexual sin. In his book Wired for Intimacy, Christian psychologist William M. Struthers lists...

Worship Begins With A Story

What’s your story? When we are asked that question, many of us could probably come up with a few different answers depending on what day it is or what kind of mood we are in. We all have unique experiences in our lives that have shaped us in one way or another. These...

What Makes You So Special?

In preparing for our Summer Camp this year, I ran across a blurb from one of the pre-camp quiet times that really struck me as true: Numerous things set the human race apart from animals — written language, technology, art,taxes, emojis, etc. Of all the things I could...

Love Your Neighbor

Jesus said in Matthew 5:43-48, “You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his...

Don’t Spit in the Tiger’s Eye

I have four granddaughters and they love spending time with their Gigi and Papa. I like having rules and structure for children so with the girl’s input we established Papa’s rules. Children need and want boundaries in their lives. It makes them feel safe and loved....

The Weight of Bitterness

According to researchers at Erasmus University carrying a grudge can weigh you down—literally. The researchers asked study participants to write about a time when they'd experienced a conflict. Some were instructed to reflect on a time when they didn't forgive the...

Spiritual Myopia

I’ve heard of deer being caught in the headlights—but never a deer caught in a light globe. A suburban New York police officer was recently credited with rescuing a deer whose head was stuck inside a discarded light globe. The officer first tried to pull the plastic...

How Vinyl Records Bring You Closer to God

What is the big deal with vinyl records being so popular again these days?  Weren’t we already through that phase in musical history?  Didn’t our fathers and our father’s fathers sell their crates of LPs at garage sale prices decades ago?  And now…now they are on sale...

Step In or Step Aside?

It’s a simple truth. When our kids suffer, we suffer. When our kids get left out, we feel sad for them.  When our kids struggle in school, we yearn to help them. Bottom Line, in our society we want our kids to succeed.   We live in a competitive world. We know...

God’s Love Never Fails

Chippie the parakeet was minding his own business and singing his song one day when his owner decided to clean out his cage. With the vacuum cleaner. The phone rang and the lady went to answer it. That’s when things started to go bad for little Chippie. The woman...

Raising Spiritual Leaders

How do you raise your children to be spiritual leaders? To be world changers for God? To lead their families in a God-centered way? There are a lot of ideas out there about how to do that, and there probably is more than one answer to that question. Here are 2...

Everybody Wants to Feel Like Somebody

Did you know everyone needs encouragement? Jesus was the ultimate encourager and example of how we should treat others. Here are seven affirmations God’s people can receive when they care for one another. Try these out on someone today! 1. Help someone feel important....

Are You Responsive in a Crisis?

Smartphones may not be as smart as we think. I recently read about a failure of smartphone virtual assistants—like Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, and Google Now. These are great tools for finding restaurants or checking the weather or doing other research. But if...

Haiti Mission Trip

A team from BridgeWay Church visited Haiti last month- Robin, Cailin & Landon Chenault, Melissa & Gabbi Perez, Marta, Dana & Carly Mcvicker, Diana DeLuna and Sandy Rogers.  Our guest blogger this week is Cailin Chenault; she will share about her...

Set Your Heart on Heaven

Contemporary philosopher Simon Critchley writes about how we don’t know how to prepare for death. He’s especially surprised that Christians, who have many reasons not to fear death, are still so afraid to die. A detailed national survey … from 2003 claimed that fully...

Not Just on Sundays

I’d like to challenge you. If you are a parent, stop and think for a moment about your child in 20 years. What are your hopes and dreams for them? Of course our hope is that they would be healthy, in a good career, possibly finishing their education, successful. But...

Easter

Easter is the announcement that what God said he would do, he accomplished in the finished work of Christ at the cross. Easter has the power to morph our lives because of the irrepressible strength of the resurrected Christ. One of the most compelling proofs of the...

The Power of Remembering

My wife, my brother, and I graduated high school in the class of 2000. That will be sixteen years ago this May. Just yesterday, as I was getting ready to head to the office, I opened social media and, to my surprise, saw that my family’s favorite Chinese restaurant...

“I Found My ONE”

This was a text message I received from a sophomore student this past week, and for some reason, it hit me really hard emotionally.   And to be completely honest, I was surprised at my strong emotional reaction to that text.  It’s such a simple message.  It is...

The Cross

The cross was a symbol used to mock Christians for what they believed. Archaeologists have uncovered an engraving from the time of the early church which reveals a bit of what the mind of the ancient Roman world was like. The engraving shows a picture of a man with a...

Celebrate the Resurrection

In September 2013, the headline on the cover of Time read: “Can Google Solve Death?” Google’s CEO announced a new division of Google known as Calico. Calico is dedicated to health and aging issues and to solving the problem of death. The editors of Time asked why...

What Matters Most

Each day we receive messages about the “important” things in life; the latest technology, the newest gadget, the online class to help us become better at our job. What does God’s Word tell us about “What matters most?” God wants us to be a blessing to others....

Through the Desert

Typically, we don’t appreciate desert experiences in our lives. But sometimes God takes us to the desert so we can find the freedom we’ve been looking for all of our lives. Sometimes God lets us go through tough circumstances created by Satan or by other people. And...

Walls

Marcello Di Cintio points out that human beings have always been preoccupied with building walls. In the first century, the Roman emperor Hadrian built a 75-mile wall across Roman Britain. In the 1870s, Argentina built a line of trenches and watchtowers called the...

Living Water

John 4:10, “Jesus answered her, ‘If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.’” These are the words Christ speaks to the woman at the well. He later identifies living water as...

Church is a Battleship

A lot of people think of church in the same way they think of a cruise ship: they think they call the shots. They ask these questions: *Do I like the music they play in the ballroom? *Do I like the captain and his staff? *Do I get good service, and are my needs met?...

Love is in the Air

Happy February Friends! I hope you are having a great month! I have a like and dislike for the month of February. On the one hand, I love the fact that we take a day to honor and show the people we love that they are special to us, and on the other hand I am not so...

Are We Missing Out on God’s Promises?

God has made a promise to all who place their faith in Him, that he has great plans for them; “plans for good and not disaster, to give you hope and a future” (Jer .29:11). What a beautiful picture of a God who is always faithful to us and loves to bless us. Yet...

New Things

It can be challenging to start new things.  These blog posts, for instance, are something new for BridgeWay staff in the coming weeks.  Should I tell you what I’m doing right now?  Should I develop a series of blog posts about worship in American culture? Should I...

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