Chris Yaw

I am a Christ Lover

Chris Yaw

I know, I'm kind of messy - but here goes... I’m an Episcopal priest serving a congregation in Metro Detroit... With a passion for gun safety... A zest for online Christian formation... A zeal for video blogging... A constant writer... A heart for those who have unintentionally harmed... A commitment to workforce housing... A love for marrying people... And an amazing wife, three kiddos and a cat named Sparrow... If you have interests in any of these areas I'd love to connect with you.

Me

Contact Details


  • St. David's Episcopal Church, 16200 W. Twelve Mile Road, Southfield, Michigan, 48076, USA


  • +011 248-557-5430


  • chris@stdavidssf.org

St. David's

I have served as rector of St. David's Episcopal Church in Southfield, MI for 16 years, join us Sundays in person or via zoom.

Trinity Gun Disposal

Working on the issue of unwanted gun disposal, we've made some real progress in helping rid the U.S. of unwanted firearms.

ChurchNext

Since 2013 we have been helping people learn more about faith through our online learning courses at ChurchNext.

Oakland Housing

Helping middle income families get better housing is a challenge that Oakland Housing has been addressing for 75 years.

Hyacinth Fellowship

Because hurting others hurts us, the Hyacinth Fellowship organizes support groups and reminds us that we are not our worst mistakes.

Yaw Wedding

I have been officiating weddings for more than 20 years and continue to find joy in helping couples build lifelong relationships.

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U.S. Guns Produced Today
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Americans Accidentally Killed Today
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Homeless Americans
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Weddings Performed
  • No Worries

    No Worries



    Most heart attacks occur between 8 and 10 on Monday mornings, leading doctors to believe it’s not diet or exercise that are to blame as much as it is stress and worry about what’s ahead.

    The fear surrounding the things we care most about – our kids, our homes, and our lives – fuel a life-threatening cocktail that we’re surprisingly willing to drink again and again and again.

    This primal activity, worry, be it an addiction, a disease, or simply part of the human condition, was something Jesus was keenly attuned to, as the single most common piece of advice He offered his followers was, ‘Don’t worry.’

    But Jesus doesn’t just leave it at that. In this Sunday’s Gospel He makes several other points about handling fear:

    First, what good is worrying, because everything’s going to be OK. We’re in God’s hands and there is nothing that can take us from there. God cares deeply and intimately about birds and flowers - even, and especially, us.

    Second, worrying is not worth it. All the worrying in the world won’t add one hour to our lives, in fact it is more likely to take hours and hours and hours from our lives.

    Third, keep things in perspective. Most of our worries pale in comparison to those of the billions of people living in hunger, sickness, and homelessness – that we are challenged to do something about. This is what striving for the Kingdom is about, bringing God’s heaven to so many people who are living in… another place.

    And finally, with this in mind, who’s got time to worry? Birds don’t, lilies don’t, and when we get busy with everything we called to be and do, we find that worrying is something we just don’t want to pay for.

    The famous slogan is ‘you are what you eat’ –
    The famous anxiety is that we become what we worry about-
    And the famous antidote is that Jesus loves and cares for us more than we’ll ever know, uniquely calling us to do things only we can do, which leaves very little time or reason to worry.

    Reading:
    Faith for the Future –Harvey Cox
    Fasting – Scot McKnight
    Matthew 1-13 - Donald Hagner
  • Ethics 2.0

    Ethics 2.0


    When someone hurts another, the base, human default setting is ‘revenge.’


    When we’ve been hit, we not only want to hit back, but with more force, punitive force, whether we’ve been cut off on the highway, or seen planes flown into skyscrapers - our knee jerk reaction is to strike back – hard.  To teach the other a lesson, sure, but also because, as Charles Bronson, Chuck Norris, and Steven Seagal all know, revenge feels so good.

    Ethics 1.0 revolutionized this default setting with something new called “justice,” ‘an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth.’  Punishment could no longer exceed the crime – and civilized institutions thrive, even today, on the legislative principle of equivalent restitution.  However, as Gandhi once noticed, an eye for an eye, very soon, makes the whole world blind.

    Enter Jesus, with Ethics 2.0.  Tucked neatly inside this Sunday’s Gospel on the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus now replaces justice with love.  Turn the other cheek, give your creditor not just your shirt, but your jacket, go the extra mile, pray for your enemies.

    This isn’t just good advice.  The idea of loving one’s enemy is the only hope this world has.  It’s the only hope marriages have, corporations have, and nations have – for we have all committed wrong, and we have all suffered wrong.  We all need forgiveness, and we all need to forgive.  If the whole world did this, we would find heaven on earth.  And when we do this, we bring a bit of heaven to earth.

    Which enemies are we praying for?  Which persecutors are we working toward forgiving?  Is there someone around us that’s hard to love?  -maybe not an enemy, but an annoying person?  In what ways can we work toward loving them?

    Reading
    Matthew - RT France
    Fasting - Scot McNight
    The Future of Faith - Harvey Cox
  • Diluted

    Diluted




    It doesn’t take a Top Chef to tell us a few obvious things about salt.  It tastes delightful in pea soup and on roast chicken.  It comes in a number of varieties, from fleur de sel to bamboo salt, depending on the combination of mineralities.  And salt, which is simply Sodium Chloride, will never, ever go bad.

    So what is Jesus talking about in this Sunday’s Gospel when he famously tells his followers, “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lots its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.”  Those of us who were shoveling snow this week know that a little salt under foot is far from a bad thing… but ‘bad salt?’  Is there really such a thing?

    Because salt can never lose its taste or become contaminated, as microbes and parasites simply can’t live on salt, the only way it can lose its saltiness is if some other agent is introduced.  Add rat poison to salt, or 10 gallons of water.  If you want to make the soup less salty, add more soup.

    The same holds true for us – when we get watered down, diluted, and the essence of who we are is drowned out by anything and everything else that’s been thrown into the pot.  No, salt will never lose its taste, but unless it is liberated from the things that water it down, it will never be what it could.

    The essence of who we are is a beloved, cherished, and invaluable member of God’s family.  We are redeemed, forgiven, reconciled with God, and the inheritors of vast possibility.  Yet, how this essence is diluted!  We languish in the waters of self-doubt, self-criticism, and unforgiveness.  Our saltiness becomes washed away by waves of self-limit, fear, and frustration.  Many of us need to get back to who we are – allow the water to subside and toss aside the things that are watering us down.  How might we do this?

    Can we imagine the impurities that impede us evaporating like new rain on a sunny sidewalk?  Can we marvel at the nuggets of gold left in the prospector’s pan after the river water is strained away?  Can we see the Christ in us rising as we allow all that seeks to lessen us fade away in the glory of His presence?

    Reading:

    Made in Detroit – Paul Clemons
    Matthew – R. T. France
    Matthew for Everyone (Vol. 1) – NT Wright
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    ADDRESS

    St. David's Episcopal Church, 16200 W. Twelve Mile Road, Southfield, MI 48076 USA

    EMAIL

    chris@stdavidssf.org

    TELEPHONE

    +011 248-557-5430