The Grace of Rescue and Renewal

Paul wrote Ephesians from prison, which makes sense when you look at the overarching tone of the letter… Chapters 1-3 read like chains falling off and prison doors swinging wide open by the power of scandalous, justifying grace. Chapters 4-6 read like they are describing how to enjoy this newfound freedom, glorifying the One who freed you by empowering, sanctifying grace. While there is an undeniable shift in the letter in Chapter 4 from what Christ did to what the church ought to do, Paul’s teaching never abandon’s God’s grace. The things Christ did are… Read More

John 1: a mic drop on grace

Our family loves going to the theatre. We love movies. You know that feeling when there’s a film you’ve been looking forward to for a while and it finally hits the theatres?  You’re sitting there and the moment the production house logo comes up accompanied by an epic score, you get this “here we go!” feeling. For me, the 20th century Fox score is a thing of legend. Probably because the first film I ever saw in theatres was Return of the Jedi when I was 10. John 1 reads like the… Read More

“They Don’t Deserve You”

As Wonder Woman hit theatres earlier this month and the reviews poured in, many of them carried the same sentiment: she’s the only hero in the DCEU thus far who hasn’t induced mixed feelings from the fans of the genre but instead has received near universal applause for getting the character right. We saw it as a family and I’d have to agree that the film was a good time. Diana’s mythology unfolds in an intriguing way and how they manage to get her from Themyscira into our world is interesting. There is… Read More

Exile, Homecoming & Grace

No doubt you are navigating many conversations around your dinner table regarding the refugee crisis in light of recent executive orders by Mr. Trump and the far reaching ramifications of those decisions. As I scroll through the headlines in my newsfeed, I find myself increasingly thankful that the gospel invites me to rest in a world that is at great unrest. If Christ’s life, death, resurrection and ascension are true, then the gospel offers us an eternal perspective that informs how we relate to the issues of the world around us. Christ has saved… Read More


After Paul went around preaching salvation by grace and through faith in Christ alone, some religious teachers began following behind him to ‘correct’ his incomplete message about God’s grace. Our english translations temper the tone of his letter to Galatia a little. For example, our versions read something like, “Oh foolish Galatians” which is far too soft. “You idiots” is closer to the tone in the original manuscripts. Our versions say, “Let him be accursed” when “they can go to hell” is closer to the level of intensity Paul was going for. Yes, I… Read More

Drunks on Horseback

According to Martin Luther, it is human nature is a little like a drunkard trying to ride a horse. When we fall off into a ditch on the left, we resolve not to make that mistake again, and so we remount with such force that we soon find ourselves in the ditch on the right. Historically speaking, the church has fallen off the gospel horse into the ditches of legalism and lawlessness. From the ditch of legalism, the Scriptures that tell us that our justification has nothing to do with anything we do, but rests solely on everything Christ… Read More

Open the Envelope

Imagine for a moment that a father dies and leaves an inheritance to his two children. The family member handling the estate gives them each a letter containing the cheques for their inheritance. The first child takes the envelope and puts it in their pocket without opening it. The second child opens it immediately. They are in utter shock as they look at amount written on the cheque. The two siblings hail a cab to go to the bank to claim their inheritance. They get stuck in an agonizing traffic jam. A… Read More


KW Redeemer meets in a high school downtown. I preach on a basketball court and behind me is this old scoreboard. It’s dark, dead, lifeless – and I’m so happy it’s there. It’s darkened state screams ‘GAME OVER!’ GAME OVER on fear of punishment for your sin. GAME OVER on needing to earn God’s blessing. God doesn’t accept growth or progress – only perfection. Perfect worship to Him. Perfect love toward your neighbour. PERFECT. [1] That’s the bad news. Here’s the good news. Because you are united to Christ – God is not… Read More

Thy Kingdom Come = Rest.

I used to race this old 1999 BMW 328. The car was uber basic – and awesome. 5spd manual transmission, stock everything except for upgraded brakes, tires and stainless steel brake lines. I bought it quite used as I operate on a ‘cheap speed strategy’. It was my daily-driver-slash-track car. I drove it to over 230,000 kms until the engine started making this insane knocking noise. Sadly (regrettably?) I sold it. Now I’m rolling in a Ford Escape SUV. Very exciting. I remember at one track day, rolling into the pits and seeing… Read More


For those of you unfamiliar with the Richter scale, our friends over at Wikipedia define it as a 1930s invention that “is a base-10 logarithmic scale, which defines magnitude as the logarithm of the ratio of the amplitude of the seismic waves to an arbitrary, minor amplitude.” In other words, it’s precise enough to record a range of seismic activity from zero, to coffee-spilling, to metropolitan devastation. Here in Southern Ontario, we’re unfamiliar with seismic activity. In certain parts of the world, people are quite familiar with it. At the time of this writing,… Read More

The Blessed Life

When Susan’s younger sister was a little girl, she wanted her parents to change her name to “Pookie”. Needless to say, as an adult she is very thankful her dad didn’t grant the request of her younger self. For most of my life, I’ve seen prayer as a tool or a means of getting things from God. Like Susan’s sister, I’ve prayed lots of Pookie prayers that, from my point of view, went unanswered. We can come to God in prayer with great confidence – but not for the reasons I once thought. I’m not confident… Read More

On Healing

This week I had the honour of officiating a funeral for one of our members who is now enjoying the presence of God in a way that I can’t fully comprehend and my words could never fully convey. When you attend a funeral, you find yourself confronted by deep, probing and perhaps uncomfortable questions. Depending on your belief system, thinking about your own mortality is either a very morbid or a very reassuring exercise. I’ve attended and officiated many funerals. Teenagers. Infants. Elderly people who lived full lives. Tragic accidents involving young adults. Or as in… Read More


Susan and I celebrated our 20th anniversary this year. When we got married at 21 years old with matching zits on our wedding day, we always dreamt of going to Greece for our 20th anniversary, which we did, and Greece did not disappoint. We were sitting in a little cafe, when I noticed this lady taking selfies at a rather extreme angle. I’m no photographer, but I’m guessing that holding a selfie stick down at your feet and smiling down into the camera would produce a picture comprised entirely of your face and… Read More

Grace from A-Z (pt 2)

We have three kids with a decent age difference: 18,15 and 10. Finding movies that everyone actually wants to see and not just tolerate can be a little tricky, as you can imagine. I remember one time when our oldest, Rebecca, was out with friends so Susan and I decided to take the boys to the movies to see something that Rebecca would be happy to watch 7 years later on Netflix. We shouted up the stairs to surprise them, “Boys! Get your stuff on, we’re taking you to the movies!” There was… Read More

Grace from A-Z

Susan and I were at a function a few months ago and introductions were happening around the table. Getting asked what I do for a living is always an interesting conversation starter. So when the question came to me, I told everyone I was a presbyterian minister and the guy sitting next to me got really excited. He said, “Oh good!” and then he proceeded to share, with refreshing honesty, his disgust and frustrations with the church. It was really interesting to hear his thoughts and the experiences he had that caused him to… Read More