Pastor's Blog

Hello! I am John Wesley and Welcome to my blog! I pray that in these articles, you will experience the love and peace and joy that comes from following Jesus! I would love connect with you. Feel free to email me at pastor@churchbuzz.org.

Thoughts on Today’s #TrumpRally

I want to follow up on my prayer of a little earlier, and talk a bit about today. My prayer earlier was: Dear God, May everyone in our city be safe and may the day be violence free. Amen.#TrumpDallasRally For many of us in Dallas, given our history, we hold our breath any time any president visits our city. Every time. Today, I’m feeling the tension especially strongly. We know that in addition to all those attending the Trump Rally today, there is a contingent ... Read More »

Has Homosexual Always Been in the Bible?

In our Methodist tradition, we (wrongly) claim “the practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching.” The research behind this story tells us: That does not appear to be true. We are lying to ourselves about what historical Biblical teaching actually said. Before we get into it, and for those who are confused….there’s an old joke about a Catholic monk, buried deep in a library somewhere… He comes across a passage in an ancient Greek manuscript and screams loudly such that everyone comes ... Read More »

Forgiveness and Justice: Hearing Both of the Jean’s

Botham Jean’s brother, Brandt, offered a remarkable moment of forgiveness toward Amber Guyger today in the courtroom. But his Mother said deeply important things too. We must hear them both. Brandt offered forgiveness and an embrace to Amber Guyger. As DA John Creuzot said, almost nobody in the judicial system sees moments like that, ever. I have no doubt that it was heartfelt and sincere on his part. If he is going to move forward with his life, finding a way to ... Read More »

The Guyger Trial: First Day Thoughts

The murder trial of Amber Guyger is underway here in Dallas. For those of you outside the city, or not paying attention, sufficed to say our city is tense and anxious about the trial and upcoming verdict. Last Monday, I was at a meeting of about 40 clergy with Faith Forward Dallas. There was extended conversation about the upcoming trial. It would be fair to say that there was deep concern in the room about the ramifications of the verdict, whatever ... Read More »

“The Greater Empathy” Thoughts on Guyger Trial, Week One

What if our opinions on the Amber Guyger trial comes down to a question of “who do you feel empathy toward?” It may not come down to this. This may be a foolish question to ask. But the question keeps popping up in my head this week, as I’ve listened to the testimony…and especially as I listened to *her* testimony yesterday. I’m a pastor, first and foremost, so creating empathy and inviting us to be empathetic toward others, is a part of ... Read More »

What Will YOU do?

As we crossed back to the US yesterday, I snapped this first pic of a sign placed by Border Patrol: “CPB Welcomes Your Comments.” We had just spent time listening to the stories of migrants camped out on the Mexican side. Cubans. Hondurans. Salvadorans and Guatemalans. All of them have been pushed back across our border and are now sleeping on hot concrete or, if they’re lucky, a few of the tents being shared by multiple families. We saw many many very small children. We ... Read More »

The Crisis We Are Creating

As we cross the border today, I’m struck by the predominance of FEAR. Fear of “The Other” is fundamentally what drives the kind of policies we see now. We must understand the real dynamic of the past two years: 1. While our immigration laws have needed reform for decades, there was never any “invasion.” 2. The new “metering” process that keeps migrants out of the US has CREATED a MUCH WORSE crisis along the border than ever before. The fear that created this Federal ... Read More »

Today on the Border

Today, we cross the border to see the violence/damage that the “metering” policy has wrought. God calls us to love the neighbor as we love ourselves. To have one law for the migrant and the citizen. Instead, we created a new “metering” that is subjecting migrants, Mexicans, AND US CITIZENS to new and dangerous crime and squalor along the border. It also adds to the fear of our Latinx citizens, who (like in El Paso) are now targets of racial hatred in ways ... Read More »

Thomas Merton Had It Easy

I spent a good bit of my twenties pissed off at Thomas Merton. I was pissed off by a very specific thing in his writings. Merton writes beautifully about the need for regular time in prayer, quiet, and contemplation. He also writes scathingly about the chaos, noise, and confusion of everyday life for most people who live in cities. (The examples he had in mind back then are, no doubt, deeply quaint now…) I was on my Perkins internship, nearing the end of ... Read More »

The Guilt that We Survive

Survivor’s Guilt. Imposter Syndrome. Two words for relatively similar experiences that, as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized many people have. Including me. The older you get, you start to look right and left, and sometimes you see folks who used to be standing beside you…aren’t. Somehow, you’ve “made it through” some life-trial, or tragedy. Somehow, you got the break, and they didn’t. And it makes you ask “Why I am the one, and why not you?” There are very *good* and clear reasons why in ... Read More »

Micah 6:8

He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?