There's a Trick of the Light I'm Learning to Do

This is a collection of songs I wrote and recorded in January - March, 2020 while on sabbatical from ministry. They each deal with a different aspect or expression of the Gospel. Click on the image above to listen.

Three Hands Clapping

This is my latest recording project (released May 27, 2019). It is a double album of 22 songs, which very roughly track the story of my life... a sort of musical autobiography, so to speak. Click the album image to listen.

Ghost Notes

Ghost Notes
A collections of original songs I wrote in 2015, and recorded with the FreeWay Musical Collective. Click the album image to listen.


Recorded in 2014, these songs are sort of a chronicle of my journey through a pastoral burn-out last winter. They deal with themes of mental-health, spiritual burn-out and depression, but also with the inexorable presence of God in the midst of darkness. Click the album art to download.


click image to download
"soundings" is a collection of songs I recorded in September/October of 2013. Dealing with themes of hope, ache, trust and spiritual loss, the songs on this album express various facets of my journey with God.


Click to download.
"Bridges" is a collection of original songs I wrote in the summer of 2011, during a soul-searching trip I took out to Alberta; a sort of long twilight in the dark night of the soul. I share it here in hopes these musical reflections on my own spiritual journey might be an encouragement to others: the sun does rise, blood-red but beautiful.


Prayers, poems and songs (2005-2009). Click to download
"echoes" is a collection of songs I wrote during my time studying at Briercrest Seminary (2004-2009). It's called "echoes" partly because these songs are "echoes" of times spent with God from my songwriting past, but also because there are musical "echoes" of hymns, songs or poems sprinkled throughout the album. Listen closely and you'll hear them.


This collection of mostly blues/rock/folk inspired songs was recorded in the spring and summer of 2015. I call it "accidentals" because all of the songs on this project were tunes I have had kicking around in my notebooks for many years but had never found a "home" for on previous albums. You can click the image to download the whole album.

blogs I follow

Readings, 2020

Readings, 2020
Paradise Lost, John Milton

Adorning the Dark, Andrew Peterson

The Soul of Shame, Curt Thompson

Cure for the Common Life, Max Lucado

Halos and Avatars, Craig Detweiller, ed.

Fool's Talk, Os Guinness

Brendan, Frederick Buechner

The Screwtape Letters

Surprised by Joy, C. S. Lewis

The Pilgrim's Regress, C. S. Lewis

Becoming Whole, Brian Finkert and Kelly Kapic

Real Sex, Lauren Winner

Out of the Silent Planet, C. S. Lewis

Voyage to Venus, C. S. Lewis

That Hideous Strength, C. S. Lewis

Till We Have Faces, C. S. Lewis

random reads

When Solomon's Temple meets Minecraft

 My kids are pretty huge Minecraft fans.  For those of you who have never played Minecraft, think of it as a big game of  "virtual Lego."  Those of you who have played Minecraft will know that it's as much like virtual Lego as Mario Karts is like "virtual Hot Wheels" (that is to say, only a bit). 

Here's Wikipedia's description:  "Minecraft is focused on creativity and building, allowing players to build constructions out of textured cubes in a 3D world. Game play in its commercial release has two principal modes: survival, which requires players to acquire resources and maintain their health and hunger; and creative, where the player has an unlimited supply of resources, the ability to fly, and no health or hunger."

Like I say, Minecraft is a popular pass time at our house. So watching the kids work on a project the other day I floated this idea past them:  "Hey guys, you wanna build a scale model of Solomon's Temple, from the Bible?"

They were up for the challenge, and construction continued off and on over the next couple of weeks.  We used the plans for the Temple and its furnishings as they're detailed in 1 Kings chapters 5, 6 and 7, and tried to follow them as strictly as possible (in Minecraft, each cube is supposed to be 1 metre by 1 metre, but for simplicity's sake we made each minecraft cube equal to one cubic cubit  (a cubit is approximately 0.5 metres, so our scale here is 2:1.)). 

My son, who is a wizard when it comes to all things techie helped us produce this virtual tour of our completed Minecraft Temple, which I offer here for your amusement and illumination:

I've read 1 Kings 5-7 a bunch of times over the years, but nothing brought it to life for me like this project with the kids, trying to figure out how and why they built this magnificent building the way they did. But what was especially fun about the job was the many opportunities it provided for us to talk about the things of God. Here's only a small sample of the questions we chewed over as we "built" our Temple, brick by Minecraft brick.

What's an altar? Why did they need one? What was in the Holy of Holies? Why couldn't you go in there?  What's a cherub?  What's an incense altar?  What did they keep in the Temple storerooms? What's a "bronze sea?"  What was it for?  What were the tables for the show-bread all about?  Why did they keep bread out like that? 

Fielding these questions (and much deeper ones-- Why was it only the priest who could go into the Holy of Holies?  What was sacrifice all about, anyway? And what happened to the Temple?) it occurred to me that meeting your kids where they play is perhaps the best way to mentor them in the things of God. 

Louis Mercier once said, "What we learn with pleasure we never forget"; and if that was ever true, it should be true of our formation in the Faith.


Michelle said...

You guys do such geeky-cool stuff.

Unknown said...

Wow! If you guys like that, check out my model of New Jerusalem from Revelations! you will enjoy!

Minecraft server:!