My grand daughter loves to be measured by her daddy. We all like to grow. My mentor, Clair, in his 80s, still loves to grow in Jesus. Journey3 is all about growth. It doesn’t matter where you are right now. You might be far from God or close to God. We are growing, each of us. Come and find out.
This Sunday, 11 am.28378763_10155442055787634_8490154363115814427_n (2)


Bring your Dreams

How to handle the death of a dream? The followers of Jesus were convinced that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. But then he dies in a horrible execution. What will they do? And what will Jesus do?
This Sunday is Easter Sunday. Journey3 invites you to come for worship and lunch. We meet at 11 am at Rivergate Church in North Portland. Come with your dreams and your desperation and let’s see what Jesus will do.WP_20170401_08_21_12_Pro

Try or Train

basketball practice

Last Sunday we looked at Luke 6:39-49.

Before this section Jesus had been teaching on the opposite nature of the kingdom of God. You are blessed if you are poor, you should love your enemies, you should forgive and not condemn people. This kingdom is the opposite of the world and of our natural inclinations. So, how do we participate in this kingdom?

March Madness just ended. My Iowa State Cyclones were in it, but bowed out by losing their second game. I asked the assembled folks on Sunday, “What do you think Roy Williams or any good basketball coach would say if one of his young players came to him before the next season and said, ‘I’m going to really try and play better this year.’” We thought about it and decided he would say, “Show me everyday in practice. Don’t try, train.”

There is a lot of trying in my following of Jesus. I get an inclination of something he wants me to do or to change in my life and I think, I’m going to try and do that better. I think this is why Jesus overwhelms us with his description of the kingdom. You can’t try to be this radically different. It’s like trying to run a marathon. I can try really hard, but if I am not training, I am in trouble when it comes to race day.

Jesus says, “The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.” Come to me, says Jesus, and let me train you. Then he follows this with three quick lessons on training:
- the plank in your eye. practice healthy self inspection and repentance
- the heart’s storehouse. store up good things in your heart and you will have good things to bring into your relationships
- the house built on the rock. listen to me and do what I tell you and you will build a life which will withstand storms

I can do this! Today I can spend time in self inspection. Today I can bring into my heart the truths of scripture. Today I can listen and do my best to follow his leading.

And the amazing thing is that, over time, as the days of training go by, I become more like the teacher.

This Sunday we continue in Luke as we look at the authority of Jesus in Luke 7:1-17.

Then, the next Sunday, April 16, is Easter! Who are you bringing with you for our special Easter worship and lunch?

Crossing Over

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” Luke 5:31-32

Last Sunday at Journey3 we talked about Jesus’ conversation with the Pharisees. He was trying to help his closest theological tribe to cross over and relate to another wealthy, powerful tribe in Israel, the tax collectors.

He was not in this case talking about associating with poor people in order to help them.The Pharisees would be in agreement with him about that. Instead he was attending a “great banquet” with a “large crowd of tax collectors and others”, and this infuriated the Pharisees. Didn’t Jesus see how destructive and self-centered these tax collectors were? Jesus was associating with “those people”, the ones we despise, the ones who are ruining our country, the ones from the Red/Blue states. Jesus crosses over to make contact and to build relationships.

Sunday we watched a few minutes from a TED talk by Megan Phelps-Roper. Fred Phelps, pastor of the notorious Westboro Baptist Church, is her grandfather. She grew up on the picket line and was passionately involved in her family’s church. But, gradually, as she debated with people on Twitter, some of them took the time to reach out to her and engage her in a unique way which ultimately built a bridge. She speaks about this sort of engagement in her talk.

I am so prone to getting this wrong. I start thinking I am called by God to get my life and my thinking right. I think I am supposed to shine for Jesus by being correct in my theology, my politics, and my character. What I hear Jesus saying is “Let me be the doctor.” He wants me to be free to be wrong, free to be a sinner. Then I am free to honestly build relationships with those who need someone to cross over.

In her talk, Phelps-Roper says that she realizes that some people don’t have the “time, the energy, and the patience for extensive engagements” which are necessary to crossing over. For those of us who have decided to follow Jesus, this sort of time, energy and patience are mandatory if we are going to be used by God to make a difference in others’ lives. This is what it means to love. And this is our calling.WP_20130606_010

Good News to the Poor

poor mother (2)

Why was Jesus born in a backwater village to an oppressed people in a damp, musty stable? Jesus announces his purpose by quoting the Jewish scriptures, “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.”

This Christmas season at Journey3 we will focus on the coming of Jesus and what this means for the poor and the outcast. We meet Sundays, 11 am, at Rivergate Church, 4737 N Lombard St.

The Journey

The Journey, Mary Oliver
One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you kept shouting their bad
advice—though the whole house began to tremble and
you felt the old tug at your ankles.
“Mend my life!” each voice cried. But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do, though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers at the very foundations –
though their melancholy was terrible.
It was already late enough and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen branches and stones.
But little by little, as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized
as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper
and deeper into the world,
determined to do the only thing you could do –
determined to save the only life you could save.

Tomorrow, 11 am, at Journey3, we discuss the wholeheartedness that is available to each of us. Join us! Journey3 meets at Rivergate Church, 4737 N Lombard St.wholeheartedness, DeGroat

The Intuitive Mind

The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a world that honors the servant, but has forgotten the gift.” Albert Einstein
Tomorrow at our Journey3 gathering we will think about the value of the intuitive mind. Come and join the discussion at 11 am. We meet at Rivergate Church, 4737 N Lombard St.wholeheartedness, DeGroat

The Inner Critic

“The inner critic conspires to protect us from feeling shame, insecurity, and inadequacy. In fact, much of our busyness can be traced back to the constant frenetic energy we anxiously expend to keep ourselves from feeling shame.” Wholeheartedness, Chuck DeGroat
Tomorrow, October 2nd, at 11 am, we will be discussing the inner critic and how it hampers our search for wholeheartedness.
Journey3 meets at Rivergate Church, 4737 N Lombard St.wholeheartedness, DeGroat (2)

Sunday, Sept. 18, 11 am, The Power of Vulnerability (a video event)


Brene’ Brown studies human connection—our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity.

Viewing and discussion of Brene’ Brown’s influential video TED talk.                                               Journey3 is hosting this community event to be held at Rivergate Church, 4737 N Lombard St, Portland, Sunday, September 18, 11 am. We will watch the 20 minute talk, The Power of Vulnerability, then discuss it over a light lunch.

Brené Brown Ph.D. is a research professor at the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. She has spent the past thirteen years studying vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame. Brené is the author of three #1 New York Times Bestsellers: Rising Strong, Daring Greatly and The Gifts of Imperfection.

Journey3: changing the world through friendship or find us on Facebook

Death and Taxes?


I think it was Benjamin Franklin who first said that the biggest certainties in life are death and taxes.  I would add to this list a third certainty, shame. Brene’ Brown, in her book, defines shame as the pervasive belief that we are not worthy of love and belonging. At the moment that Jesus died, two incredible things happened, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, and many tombs around Jerusalem broke open and dead people came back to life. (Matthew 27:51-53) The curtain was the separation between us and God. It held us in our shame and prevented us from experiencing love and belonging. Jesus died so that death and shame would be forever broken. This Easter is the celebration of life, love and belonging! Please join us at 11 am as we celebrate the risen Lord.

(I’m still not sure what to do about taxes.)