Mythic Adventures

Sacred Stories from around the Globe

Archive for the category “Christianity”

How Our Conception of God Can Become an Idol

This is a short sermon I preached at Portage Chapel Hill United Methodist Church at the early morning Communion Service on Transfiguration Sunday, February 10, 2012. If the members of the congregation were going to “give up something for Lent,” I suggested giving up our current conceptions of Jesus and spending Lent praying for clearer vision of who Christ really is.

An Unusual Setting for Worship

The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, by Benjamin Britten, is an unusual piece of music to use as a worship setting, but that’s what I recommend. Click on the link below to hear why (4:49):


The excerpts played here are by the Boston Pops Orchestra under Arthur Fiedler.

Want to try the meditation yourself without my voice-over? Click the link below:

An Urgent Invitation


Earlier today I was the guest preacher at Keeler United Methodist Church, a beautiful old country church just east of St. Joseph, Michigan. The structure is over 170 years old, and as soon as you walk into the sanctuary, your gaze is directed toward Christ in the garden, praying.

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I especially like the fact that the person who is preaching sees another image — one that reminds us to feed his sheep. You might have to look closely to see the picture between the two windows in the back, but it was much more visible for me. It was an honor to preach in such a lovely setting, and the One of whom I spoke seemed very close indeed.


My sermon was entitled, “An Urgent Invitation.” My text was Luke 9:57-62. I talked about what it means to follow Jesus today, and I presented some mental snapshots of what our lives will look like if we’re truly doing that.

Click the link below to listen (25 min).



Radio Interview

On Thursday, June 9, 2016, I was once again a guest on iWork4Him with host Jim Brangenberg. We talked about my book, What Does God Do from 9 to 5?

To listen to the hour-long broadcast from Tampa Bay, Florida, click here.

For more about Jim and his show, here is a link.

Episode 104 The Lens

In his Institutes of the Christian Religion, Book 1, Chapter 6, Paragraph 1, John Calvin introduces the idea that the scriptures serve as a lens through which Christians view the world. Although that imagery is useful, I argue that it is simplistic. As Christ shows in Matthew 5, he himself is the lens through which we ought to view all the rest of the scriptures. Click on the link below to listen (15:00).

Episode 103 The Cost of Being a Christian

A reflection on Matthew 5:29-30.  Click on the link below to listen (10:02).

Episode 102 Be Perfect

In Matthew 5:48, Christ tells us to “be perfect.” Although I’ve never been stirred by talk of perfection, in this post I explain why this passage deeply inspires me.  Click on the link below to listen (14:29).

Episode 101 It’s Not For Wimps

This is a sermon I preached at Portage Chapel Hill United Methodist Church in Portage, Michigan (USA) on February 16, 2014.  The text was Matthew 5:21-26, and it was read by Rev. Hazel Winterburn. Please click on the link below to listen (26:08).

Episode 100 Celebration

For my 100th episode, I take time out to reminisce about how and why I started this audio blog. Click on the link below to listen (14:07).

Here’s a list of the first 99 episodes. You can get to them by clicking on “Older Entries” at the bottom of the screen.

The story of Saul and David from the Old Testament:

Episode 1: The Reluctant Giant

Episode 2: The Bigger They Are

A story from Jataka, a Buddhist text:

Episode 3: Dangerous Crossing Part 1

Episode 4: Dangerous Crossing Part 2

The Knights of the Round Table:

Episode 5: Bad Day in Camelot

The Epic of Gilgamesh, an ancient Mesopotamian text:

Episode 6: There’s Nobody Like Me

Episode 7: Gilgamesh Meets His Match

Episode 8: His Breath Is Death

[Episode 9: A Mythic Adventures Christmas Special]

Episode 10: Attack of the Bull of Heaven

Episode 11: Aftermath

Episode 12: Into the Darkness

Episode 13: The Old Man’s Secret

Episode 14: The Education of Gilgamesh

Stories about St. Francis of Assisi:

Episode 15: Those Crazy Franciscans

Episode 16: Knock-Knock

Episode 17: What Perfect Joy Is Like

Episode 18: Wolves, Lepers, and Thieves

Episode 19: The Sadistic Angel

Stories that focus on spiritual growth through problem-solving:

Episode 20: Personal Reflection

Episode 21: Meaningful Problems (Joseph and the Coat of Many Colors)

Episode 22: The Challenge of Holy Week

Episode 23: The Fortunate Exile (The Spanish story of El Cid)

Episode 24: The Problem is a Solution (The Ramayana—a Hindu epic)

Episode 25: Two Heads Are Better (The Shinto text Kojiki)

Episode 26: Not Quite Heaven (Dante’s Divine Comedy)

Episode 27: Some Serious Hoop (the Quiche Mayan text Popol Vuh)

The Book of Mormon:

Episode 28: A Tale of Two Nations Part 1

Episode 29: A Tale of Two Nations Part 2

Episode 30: A Tale of Two Nations Part 3

Some personal reflections and testimonies:

Episode 31: Why Mythic?

Episode 32: Shave and a Haircut Part 1

Episode 33: Shave and a Haircut Part 2

Episode 34: Shave and a Haircut Part 3

Episode 35: Shave and a Haircut Part 4

Assorted topics:

Episode 36: Running from God (the Hound of Heaven)

Episode 37: Grace Bacon’s Dream (American autobiography)

Episode 38: When We Plan, Does God Laugh?

An interfaith series: How to Have a Mythic Adventure in a Monday-Friday World

Episode 39: Intro

Episode 40: One Step at a Time

Episode 41: Waiting

Episode 42: Why It Takes So Long

Episode 43: Vigilance!

Episode 44: Auspicious Adversity

Episode 45: Whatever Is… Is Right?

Episode 46: The Way of the World

Episode 47: Accepting the Adventure

Episode 48: Hard to Get

Episode 49: Finding and Seeking

Episode 50: Ears to Hear

Episode 51: The Masked Goddess

Episode 52: A Feathery Influence

Episode 53: Making Mistakes

Episode 54: Mistakes or Sin?

Episode 55: Perceval’s Great Mistake

Episode 56: The End of the World

Episode 57: Raging at God

Episode 58: The Trials of Job

Episode 59: Journey’s End

Episode 60: The Pursuit of Greatness

Episode 61: The Meaning of Life

Episode 62: The Progress of Souls

Episode 63: Enlarging the Circle

Episode 64: We Are Not Alone

Episode 65: What We Have Learned

Speeches and sermons on the teachings of Jesus:

Episode 66: Something to Offend Everyone Part 1

Episode 67: Something to Offend Everyone Part 2

Episode 68: Sparrows, Beetles, and Mites

Episode 69: Ask

Episode 70: Beyond Sacred Space

Episode 71: To See Him As He Is

Lenten Reflections

Episode 72: What Are We Focused On?

Episode 73: Where Are We Going?

Episode 74: What Are We Hearing?

Episode 75: What Do We Want?

Episode 76: What Are We Doing?

Episode 77: The Way

Episode 78: The Resurrection and the Life

Episode 79: Through the Sea

Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass:

Episode 80: Sail Forth!

Episode 81: Where Mariner Has Not Yet Dared to Go

Episode 82: The Open Road

Episode 83: The Profound Lesson of Reception

Episode 84: Impassive Surfaces

Episode 85: Inhaling and Divesting

Episode 86: After the Great Companions

Episode 87: I Give You My Hand

A series of lectures on early Christian history entitled The Dawning of the Christ Culture:

Episode 88: Intro

Episode 89: Jewish Beginnings

Episode 90: Rethinking Church (Way Back When)

Episode 91: A Major Decision

Episode 92: Culture Shock

Episode 93: Socrates and Plato

Episode 94: Paul and the Philosophers

Episode 95: Destruction of Jerusalem

Episode 96: Roman Persecution

Episode 97: Theology and Heresy

Episode 98: Emperor Constantine

Episode 99: The Imperial Church

Episode 99 The Dawning of the Christ Culture, Part 12 (Conclusion)

When the Emperor Constantine convenes an all-church council, the Christ Culture becomes imperial, but Germanic tribes are even now making incursions into the empire. Click on the link below to listen (18:56).

I’ll be back in late January or early February with the 100th episode.

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