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I’m clueless on the number of weddings I’ve conducted over the past 31 years.  To be more specific, I’ve lost count of the number of weddings I’ve done in the past six years!  That many weddings can only mean one thing: CAKE.  Lots and lots of wedding cake.

I might now be some kind of wedding cake connoisseur.  I’m not kidding.  There might be snacks, finger foods, legit hors d’oeuvres, or a full-blown feast, but before it’s all over, I’m going to eat cake at the reception.  Preferably a piece from each cake: the bride’s and the groom’s.  And let me tell you, from all my vast experience, it’s not all that often that a cake tastes as good as it looks.  They’re almost always beautiful and amazing to look at.  But the same can’t be said for how they taste.  Sorry brides.  I’m just stating the facts here.

wedding-cakeYou would think that what a wedding cake costs would all but guarantee an exotic mouth explosion.  Wrong. Not always.  I’ve had some really good cake, but the sad fact is that you often get brilliance on the outside and dull on the inside. Hold on to that thought for later.

To be fair, I spoke with a professional cake maker.  Sometimes the cake design actually requires a stiffer texture on the inside to support all the fireworks on the outside of the cake.  Simply put, a flaky, moist, and supple texture of an amazing cake often will not hold the weight of all the decorating.  If the externals are what matters—the internals are usually compromised.  Not always, but it’s the Achilles for true baking experts.

One more thing about wedding cake and then I’ll transition to my point: I know the current trend is to use large amounts of fondant (flat-goo) on a cake.  I usually bum out before I even try a bite.  It’s just a weird material for cake. I know it’s popular and trendy, but it usually requires a bit of surgery to remove that layer before you dig in. Then you have this blob of goo on your plate that you’re trying to ignore while eating around it. I’ve broken more plastic forks trying to cut fondant than roast beef. Yeah, I said it.  Again, I’m sorry.  But ladies, stop with the frikk’n cake goo!

TRANSITION (Thank the Lord!)

I’ve preached a few times outside of America.  I’ve enjoyed some of my visits to churches overseas.  But often it hurts my heart when I realize that, somehow, they’ve gotten the notion that their “doing church right” requires them to sing our songs, take on our styles, or emulate Western preachers they may have seen on television or who may have visited their country.

Let me give you one example:

In Uganda, I was asked to preach at an outdoor event.  There might have been 10,000 people that showed up for the meetings.  The African church that was leading the worship sent their version of our version of a praise team to lead the worship, and they were trying to sing old school praise songs in English.  It was horrifying!  Absolutely horrendous!  After listening to the screeching for about 15 minutes, I told my African host, “Dude, you’re killing these people with that crap.” Yeah, I said it. “Tell your drummers to get these people dancing!”  What had felt like a funeral soon turned into a lot of singing and dancing. The cloud of red dirt that rose above the crowd was filled with electricity and hope. They weren’t dancing little charismatic bunny hop stuff.  These people were dancing for their lives. They knew pain, but they were dancing because they were alive.  It was incredible.

I’m fairly convinced we would never have gotten to the dancing, the freedom, and the celebration if they had continued on with something that wasn’t really them.  Why they wanted the worship to look Americanized is still a mystery to me.

It seemed they were more worried about how the cake looked, and not so much about how it tasted.

To be honest, I’m still a little bit traumatized from our recent visit to a church in Cambodia. I’ll spare you the details.


I wonder if that’s a problem here also?  Is how it looks on Sunday more important than how it really is on Sunday?

How much time do ministry “professionals” spend on the icing for Sunday compared to time spent serving cake to wandering or wounded sheep during the week?  I wonder if ministry leaders would care less about Sunday’s affairs if the people cared more about ministry in the streets, their neighbors, and the real needs of a community? What would that look like if out there was the priority?  What would it be like if a church was known for its volume of volunteer servants in a community; not the size of its Sunday gatherings?

What if infrastructure was an afterthought when we mentioned the words worship, fellowship, care, love, giving, and service?  What would it be like if there was no monthly nut that the church had to endlessly stare down?  In other words, money could just flow from giving hearts to needy hearts without performance pressure?

I’ve been there, I know how it works, and I know how I’ve been. I don’t like the answers to some of these questions if I’m going to be honest.

Who is going to change some of what needs to be changed?

When are we going to change it?

Love you all,



Oh, BTW, in the famous words of the beautiful Joey McGinnis, “Eat cake!”

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. June 21, 2016 at 9:27 am

    Yes! Yes! Yes! THIS is what I’m after. THIS is what I want to see made tangible. THIS is what so many in my community are hungering for.

    • June 21, 2016 at 9:57 am

      WELL… I don’t think you change it by doing the Zombie walk in what has always been the norm.

  2. msl.2025
    June 21, 2016 at 10:22 am

    Cake good

  3. msl.2025
    June 21, 2016 at 10:26 am

    I grew up in a house of horror but we looked good to the outside world. Appearances is what my Mother lived for God rest her soul

    Powered by Cricket Wireless

    • June 21, 2016 at 12:21 pm

      More common than not I suspect.

  4. July 4, 2016 at 6:07 am

    The world will know us by our love, everything else is fondant!

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