All Posts By

Brian Keepers

Essay

Listening for the Grace Notes

Upon finishing seminary and entering my first pastorate, my wife Tammy and I decided we were ready to start a family. We tried for almost a year to get pregnant with no success. Everyone was happy to offer their conception…
Essay

Putting Fear in its Place

“T’was grace that taught my heart to fear, and grace my fears relieved.” - Amazing Grace (verse 2) Like so many preachers this Easter, I really wrestled with what text to preach on. Which of the four evangelists was right…
Essay

Say Grace at the Polls

It’s been another crazy few weeks in American politics. Crazy seems to be the new norm. Impeachment proceedings. An acquittal by senate republicans. A highly partisan State of the Union address with lots of theatrics (including the house speaker tearing…
Essay

The Transformative Power of Friendship

It’s not every Sunday that a journalist from the New York Times visits your church. At least not the church I serve, tucked away in rural Northwest Iowa. This happened two Sundays ago. The journalist’s name was Elizabeth (a Wheaton…
Essay

The Simeon and Anna of Skid Row

When I step off the bus, I’m immediately greeted by the distinct smell of a crush of humanity--30,000 homeless people crammed into six square blocks in the inner city of Los Angeles. They call it “Skid Row.” The kids from…
Essay

The Blessing and the Limp

The same night he got up and took his two wives, his two maids, and his eleven children, and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. He took and sent them across the stream, and likewise everything that he had. Jacob…
Essay

Promising to Love Prodigals

Every couple months I try to gather my parishioners who are residents in our local retirement home for a time of fellowship. There’s no agenda except to be together. We enjoy some coffee and goodies (often Dutch pastries), share what’s…
Essay

The Measure of a Sermon

I’ve been preaching now for nearly twenty years. That’s in three congregations, the last two of which have multiple Sunday morning services. You tally it all up, and I figure I’ve preached somewhere around two thousand times. Two thousand times…