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Get A Free Copy of My New Book: Dear God, We Need To Talk

Dear God We Need To Talk - 3D GrayOkay fellow bloggers, Charisma House has given me a special digital copy of my book that I am free to distribute to bloggers willing to offer a book review. If you’re interested in receiving the free pdf, please send me an email to dschalk(at)cogop(dot)org. Or, if you’d like to receive a free paperback copy, you can sign up to review it at where it will be available next week.

If you’d like to learn more about the book, or watch the special book promo, click here.

Also, next week will become So head over and check out the new site if you get a chance!



DARREN’S BOOK VIDEO IS HERE! (and his new website at

Cover Screen Cap 1 small

My official book release is only 2 weeks away, and it’s time to let the cat out of the bag in the form of my fantastically amazing super stupendous ridiculously awesome BOOK VIDEO! (In which I may or may not shamelessly exploit my children to help sell books.) I also wanted to let everyone know I’m moving my website over to So check it out while you’re there.  (Also, if you receive my posts in your email, you’ll need to resubscribe on the new site. You can find the subscription box on the right hand side of the home page). Here’s the link, go check out the video and resubscribe! Thanks for reading!

Click Here To Watch Darren’s Book Video

PLEASE DON’T READ MY BOOK (but check out this sneak preview)

Picture9I had an epiphany recently, and it wasn’t a pleasant one.

I have a horrible habit of crawling up into my head to see what’s there. More often than not I merely notice what’s missing, but that’s another story.

I’m slightly introverted, so I often find myself lost in my thoughts. (Does that phrasing even make sense?)

WARNING: TMI in 3…2…1…

This happens most often while I’m in the shower.

My wife likes to point out that I sometimes take long showers. I do this because I literally forget I’m in the shower. I get utterly lost in my head, like that dude in the movie Hook who couldn’t find his marbles.

On one of my recent head trips (pun) I realized that my head is a place no one should ever visit. It’s filled with ridiculous ponderings about strawberry jelly, Jesus, duck-billed platypuses, time travel, and Teletubbies, although not necessarily in that order. (Unfortunately the Teletubbies are usually first, followed by the time travel, which is usually my attempt to escape the Teletubbies, who are the thing of nightmares.)

And this life-changing epiphany was followed by another, more horrifying epiphany: My book is a literal trip inside the mind of Darren. The previous paragraph shows why this is so horrifying. Read the rest of this entry

How To Have An Awesome Life Even When Life Isn’t So Awesome


Sometimes life isn’t all that awesome.

I was reminded of this awful truth when I woke up to a house without power this morning in 4 degree temperatures. Oh, and my pipes were frozen, so no heat, no water, and no power.

Normally this would send me into total-Darren-freak-out-panic mode. My wife says I’m a bit of a pessimist when it comes to these types of situations, or any situation for that matter.

My brain tends to see everything that’s not there. I like to see what’s coming, so I analyze every possible scenario before any of them actually play out. I’m always looking past what I see and trying to see what I can’t see.

Wow, just writing that makes me realize why my wife gets so annoyed with this trait. Read the rest of this entry

The Greatest Three Words Ever Spoken


I’ve been pondering my candidates for the greatest three words ever spoken. The easiest choice would be “I Love You” but that’s just too obvious.

I also thought about “Lions Win Superbowl” but that phrase will never be uttered in any universe.

I then considered “Darren Finally Owns A Platypus” and while it would certainly be the greatest phrase ever spoken, it’s more than three words so it’s out as well.

After my ridiculous ponderings, I think I’ve found the best three words ever spoken in the book of Matthew, more specifically, in the story of Jesus walking on the water.

Surprisingly, they aren’t even in red.
Read the rest of this entry

Faith Is Not a Magic Wand

Magic Wand

What is faith?

I’ve grappled with this question over the years. My Dad was a true man of faith. You can read a brief synopsis of his great faith here. So I was raised in a home driven by faith in God.

And yet, while I’ve seen God do some ridiculously amazing things, I’ve also noticed that God doesn’t do everything in the exact way we hope or believe he will, even when we think we’re exercising faith in the proper manner.

My experiences have led me to think about faith…A LOT. So here’s my basic conclusion. Read the rest of this entry

When God Fails, Can You Still Trust Him?


I recently had an epic fail. Even though my wife’s best friend is a professional hair dresser and would gladly come cut my hair in my home, I cut my own because, as my wife says, I’m cheap. This had never caused an issue before, but alas, all good things must come to an end.

I cut my hair in front of the mirror so I can get a good look at what I’m doing. As I was cutting, I lifted the clippers up toward the top of my head, and for a brief moment the clippers disappeared behind my arm. Apparently during this brief moment in my blind spot, the guard silently fell off…like a stealth ninja hair guard. I then pressed the clippers to the top of my head with no guard whatsoever, gashing a 2 inch hole into the side of my hair. Read the rest of this entry

Are You Ministering or Performing?

Performer Minister

There are ministers and there are performers. And unfortunately, there are some ministers who act more like performers.

I hate unpreparedness. Nothing irks me more than when someone, particularly in a church service, gets up to do something without having prepared. I believe in doing everything with excellence, and when leading, I try not to let anything but the best occur under my watch and supervision. Anything less is inexcusable, although some things inevitably slip through the cracks.

But at the same time, there’s a fine line between excellence and perfection, or between preparedness and performance, particularly in church.

I’ve come to believe that when your goal is perfection, it can easily move from ministry to performance, and those are VERY different things. Read the rest of this entry

MY BOOK LIVES! New Title, New Release Date (and my favorite stuffed animal) Revealed!


MY BOOK LIVES! (And my teddy bear has a head again.)

Ladies and gentleman, many moons ago I wrote a gut-wrenching, tear-stained post about the death of my highly anticipated (by my Mom and 14 others) book. If you didn’t see it, you can read it here. I wrote about how my favorite teddy bear’s head had been ripped off. (Assuming I actually had a favorite teddy bear, which if I did, I’d never admit. At least, not until the very end of this post.) Read the rest of this entry

Should Your Church Euthanize Small Groups?

NOT small-groups

Someone recently pointed me to a blog post that said churches should “euthanize small groups.” You can read it here. I think it’s fairly old, but new to me. At first I feared the author might be an insane murderer, but as I read, I realized he didn’t mean it literally. When he said we should euthanize small groups, he simply meant the practice of such a thing in church, not the groups themselves (whew).

The author made several arguments, stating that small groups don’t really create disciples but, rather, they tend to create ineffective, half-hearted friendships that don’t truly fulfill the Great Commission.

Okay, I could buy into that to some extent. It’s certainly been true of many of the small groups I’ve tried to be a part of. But it’s not true of all of them. So it’s a highly over-generalized idea. I’ve been a part of some truly close-knit, spiritually effective small groups, as well.

I don’t think we need to kill our small groups. But, there certainly ARE some things we could euthanize Read the rest of this entry