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
  • Beatitudes are Not Sudoku

    Beatitudes are Not Sudoku


    Here’s my take on the Beatitudes:

    Blessed are you:
    When you’re poor because you gave your money away.
    When you’re hungry because you gave your sandwich away.
    When you’re sad because you’re helping your depressed friend.
    When you’re not part of the ‘cool crowd’ because following Jesus pretty much guarantees you won’t be a part of the cool crowd.

    Unblessed are you:
    When you’re living the high life really selfishly.
    When you overate because you didn’t share.
    When your life is primarily about entertaining yourself.
    When you are king of the cool club because having other people like you is really what life is all about.

    So the beatitudes aren’t like solving a sudoku– rather they’re pretty obvious statements about what it means to lead a Christian life – and pretty much a happy and fulfilling life in general.

    I think we hear them on All Saints’ Day (we’re celebrating it Sunday) because the saints are the ones who’ve figured this out – and really want us to get this.

    So read ‘em again and be blessed.

    ----------------
    Reading:
    Unapologetic – Francis Spufford
    The Distant Mirror – Barbara Tuchman

    Free- Mark Scandrette
  • The Big Picture

    The Big Picture



    Boy what a rotten day it's going to be!

    All of the up close spots are taken and I have to park in the back 40. That printer that holds 500 sheets needs refilling when I'm trying to print a 3 page doc. The kid with grimy hands touched my new jeans and they'll need to go back into the wash.

    As if any of these things are a big deal: so I get a bit more exercise by walking 20 yards further, I'm delayed 30 seconds restocking the printer, and jeans will have to go back to the wash someday anyway. Yet how often to I allow these tiny things to anger me, frustrate me, and turn my day into a 'bad day'?

    God grant me one gift today: to stop whining at life's slight imperfections.

    For just one day I would love to have the gift of seeing the big picture: I am loved, I am cared for, my worst fear (death) will actually be my greatest moment of joy (seeing God).

    Lord, help us all get a view of your big picture.




  • Running on Empty?

    Running on Empty?


    I remember driving through southern Utah years ago and seeing big warning signs about the scarcity of gas stations. There were 100 miles or more between service centers – so you better check your gas gauge and plan accordingly. Nothing ends your journey quicker than running out of gas: when you go on a trip you need to refuel – often.

    The journey of faith is similar. You and I often run up against running out of gas.

    We are tempted to ask if it all really matters. If there is any more to our Christian faith than the simple projection of evolving minds that are responding to primeval, meaning-making forces? Is our belief in God anything more than a sociologically formed conception that has far more to do with the zip code in which we were born than divine transcendence?

    Sigh.

    Running out of gas is running out of faith – faith that there is a God, there is meaning in the universe – that my life is precious, purposeful, and irreplaceable.

    And nothing puts gas into our tanks better than prayer.

    In prayer we acknowledge who we are, whose we are, how we’re here, and God’s eternal ok-ness with it all. Prayer is grounding ourselves in the divine love that rules the universe. Prayer builds faith.

    Nothing ends a journey quicker than running out of prayer.

    When’s your next fill-up?

    ---------------------
    Reading
    A Distant Mirror – Barbara Tuchman
    Monster Loyalty – Jackie Huba

    Jesus the Jewish Theologian – Brad H. Young

  • Feeling Bummed? Try Gratitude

    Feeling Bummed? Try Gratitude


    We all know that one of the best ways to get out of a funk is to take a moment (or longer) and simply give thanks for what we’ve got. How does this work?

    ·      It makes us happy to think about happy things. When we remind ourselves of the positive things in our lives, we often smile at the good things around us.
    ·      It helps us turn bad things into good things. Got a cold? Thank God it’s not cancer. Worried about losing your job? At least you’ve got one.
    ·      It puts things in perspective. When we’re thankful for the miracle of happy and healthy kids, it’s hard to get too bent out of shape over the ‘C’ on their report card. A messy bathroom isn’t as life altering when we remember we’ve got a roof over our heads.
    ·      It reminds us to thank other people. How many times has our day been made when someone reached out with a card, email, or phone call just to say thanks? We love being appreciated, and it costs so little to do.

    As you probably know, I have a gratitude list I carry in my smart phone. I look at it regularly, especially when I’m tempted to get bummed about what I don’t have or who I am not. I always recommend this to people.

    In Sunday’s Gospel we will hear about the 10 lepers whom Jesus healed, and the rather surprising notion that only one came back to say thanks. Sure it’s rather astonishing so few had the courtesy to do so, but also because the expression of gratitude is so good for us.

    For what are we grateful today? Who do we need to thank right now? How might we go about doing so?

    -------------------
    Reading
    A Distant Mirror – Barbara Tuchman
    Unapologetic – Francis Spufford
    Leaders Make the Future- Bob Johansen
  • Move Your Mountain

    Move Your Mountain


    Not long ago my friend’s dad died.
     
    He was an amazing man - a kind, charitable soul. He was a terrific father who talked to his children every day. After the funeral my friend and I got together for coffee. And he told me he didn’t know how he was ever going to get over the loss of his dad. He described a void that could not be filled.
     
    How can he go on living without such a huge part of his life?
     
    This was my friend’s mulberry tree.
     
    In this Sunday’s Gospel Jesus tells his disciples that if they have the faith of a mustard seed they will be able to say to a mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and thrown into the sea, and it will obey you.’
     
    Personally, I think most mulberry trees are rather well located. The idea Jesus would be lending arboreal advice to his disciples at this time is doubtful. What is more helpful is the notion that the mulberry tree stands for that one immovable thing we can’t get over - the loss of a dear one, the addiction or bad habit, the worry about raising the kids. Jesus says all we need is that mustard seed, those five words, ‘Here God, you take it.’ And those 5 words can move that mulberry tree.
     
    So what’s our mulberry tree? What is that situation, who is that person, what is that worry we have to give over to God? More than us, God wants us to hand it over. What’s holding us back? Especially knowing that with God all things are possible?
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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