Author Archives: Steve

Welcoming Families: Four Laws of Childcare in Churches

Churches often scare away exactly the people they’re trying to reach. These four laws of childcare in churches can help you effectively care for young ones and welcome their families into the life of your church. Continue reading »

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Humility: No other option for Christians (including me)

I’m becoming less tolerant of arrogance these days – especially from Christians. But then today I had to step back from my own arrogance. Continue reading »

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Developing Diversity: Part 1 – Prioritizing

Sometimes, diversity just happens.  That’s wonderful!  But what if it doesn’t?  This series of blog posts is about how leaders can choose to move ahead in developing diversity when it doesn’t arrive of its own accord. I’ll be opening discussions on six different topics, all of which I’ve shoehorned into words that start with the … Continue reading »

Categories: Church Leaders, Diversity, Leadership, Reaching Out, Undercover Pastor | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Does your church or organization need more diversity?

A couple of months ago, one of my neighbors had a party.  Frequently when someone has a party in our neighborhood, all of the available street parking fills up, and this one was pretty typical – with one exception.  There was a certain sameness about the vehicles.  Here’s what the street looked like:   It … Continue reading »

Categories: Church and the World, Church Leaders, Church Transformation, Diversity, Reaching Out, Undercover Pastor | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Actually, Appearances Do Matter at Church

In the church, we talk a lot about the need for authenticity and inviting people just as they are.  It could be tempting to extrapolate from that and say, “Appearances don’t really matter.”  Well, they do.  This isn’t just true for churches.  It’s true for businesses and individuals with goals too. I just got a … Continue reading »

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Everyday Evangelism: Seeing with Jesus’ Eyes

Evangelism literally means bringing the Good News to someone. Everyone can do it. One way is simply to keep your eyes open for need or pain around you. Continue reading »

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How do Christians look to others?

I recently went to a seminar and was able to be helpful to the presenter. He asked me what I do and I told him that I’m a pastor and software developer. Then he sighed and said, “Why do the kind and helpful people always turn out to be Christians?” I don’t think ALL the … Continue reading »

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“Practicing Peace” a practical guide to anxiety reduction

Preparing to preach at my home church this Sunday, I realized that I hadn’t shared the message I shared last time I preached there. I find Paul’s advice on how to live a low-anxiety life really helpful!  He shares 6 simple practices that we can all use. Here’s a really practical message on practicing peace … Continue reading »

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Thanksgiving Smoothie Fun

The Jamba Juice near our house is into the Thanksgiving spirit. Here’s the sign announcing their holiday specials. (I’m giving thanks that I haven’t tasted the mashed potato smoothie 🙂

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“Look for Jesus!” a post-Easter Message for post-Easter people!

When life gets rough, look for Jesus! Continue reading »

Categories: Discipleship - learning from Jesus, Preaching, Undercover Pastor | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Self-Driving Cars and Older Adults

Some people avoid the driving test even when they know they’re having trouble because of the implications of giving up that license. Could an autonomous car make all the difference? Continue reading »

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Fear vs. faith – which will decide our future?

Fear blocks much of what God seeks to do in our churches and lives… When we choose fear, we miss out on God’s blessings. Continue reading »

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Unplugged, Quiet, Set Apart – The Power of Time “Away”

Jesus spent time apart. (Just check the gospels. I’ll wait.) Spending time “unplugged,” quiet, and “set apart” from the things that occupy and distract us is good for us too. That kind of time sets us free to understand what we really think and feel and to listen to God. It means time without iPods, … Continue reading »

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A New Habit for an Amazing New Year

In this message, Steve shares how God got his attention in 1997, what God promises to tithers in the Bible, and what it’s been like to be a tither for 14+ years. Continue reading »

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The Secret of Peace: Part 1 – Gratitude

Times are tough and there’s a lot of stress and anxiety out there. God has a prescription for peace in our lives, and it involves prayer and giving thanks. How can we give thanks when we’ve experienced pain or loss? We’ll explore that together. Read Philippians 4:6-7.

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Change or Die?

Everything changes – just look at nature. And as Christians, we know that God is bringing change in our lives. A lot of the time, we don’t want change – or we only want change that we can control. That’s not how God does it. The only organisms that don’t change are dead. We all … Continue reading »

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Thoughts on Receiving Forgiveness

Christians understand the idea that those who become Christians receive forgiveness in Christ, but many of us then expect perfection of ourselves – especially in Christian service but also in other parts of our lives (parenting for me). God calls imperfect people – knowing who we are – loves and forgives us all the way, … Continue reading »

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Low-Sodium, Low-Wattage Christianity? (Matthew 5:13-16)

Jesus’ first followers lived in a tough time. There was a lot of anxiety, negativity and opposition. Sounds like now! But Jesus called them to be salt (presevative, flavoring, essential chemical for life) and light (help with direction, fear-reduction, and safety). He calls us to that too. In this message, Rev. Steve Whitney shares some … Continue reading »

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We had a database error (and I haven’t posted since May so I didn’t notice). It’s fixed now!

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Time to Say Goodbye

Friends, this is a letter to the congregation at Trinity, but anyone interested can read it to find out more about what I’m doing and why. Background I’ve been pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in West Sacramento for almost 8 years now. And in that time, God has done many amazing things in us and … Continue reading »

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