Month: May 2015
May 30, 2015
Sometimes, we disengage from challenging injustice because we have been conditioned to believe that our efforts will not matter; we don’t believe that we can make any real difference. God requires us, his people, to be the movement, humbly and faithfully carrying his mercy, his justice, and his transforming presence in our world.
May 28, 2015
what it means to live missionally is to have authentic friendship with people in these networks. If Jesus is truly important to you, and if you have real friendships with people, then Jesus is going to come up sooner or later in the natural course of sharing life.
May 27, 2015
One of the great blessings in life is to celebrate the ways that God works and moves. Sometimes, in our bid to stay humble, we can forget to give testimony to what God has done.
May 25, 2015
This is the zeal that we need: zeal inspired by God’s love to be zealous to share God’s love. This zeal burns with a holy fire that is controlled but cannot be quenched. This kind of zeal is not the middle ground of “just right” between two extremes, but it is zeal that is hot, truly hot enough that excites the Christian to share the love of God with others.
May 23, 2015
To be a follower is not a valued characteristic in our culture, is it? If someone asked us if we wanted our children to grow up to be followers or leaders, I’m guessing most of us would say leaders. When we hire or promote someone at work are we looking for leaders or followers? But have you ever heard of a group that offers follower training? It’s even something we say as sort of an insult: “that person is such a follower.”
I wonder if that’s why we have a hard time following Jesus…
May 20, 2015
At one level, Melissa and I are the ideal first-time guests. And yet, we have been surprised at how difficult it has been to find deep and nurturing community in the local church. We have often been discouraged, because our initial strategy for finding new community when we have moved has been to try to quickly plug in to a new church. There have been a few times when the church did not seem to need or want new people. Of course, they would say that they did, but their actions communicated more loudly that the community was content the way it was and did not want to be disrupted.
May 18, 2015
Worm Theology is probably a good moniker for such belief. It imprisons humanity in this notion that our sin has made us worthless. It fetters us to the falsity that the evil within us has so completely broken us that we literally have no value.
It sounds pious. It sounds like a good understanding of the holy character of God lies behind it. It sounds like something Christians should say. But is this at all what the scriptures teach? Or is this just a leftover from the shame-laden sermons we heard in our youth?
May 16, 2015
Anyway, several months ago I was in one of these meetings – probably 40 people there – admiring the raw spirituality of the environment, when during the sharing time a man says, “We don’t have a drinking PROBLEM. We have a drinking SOLUTION. We’ve got all kinds of problems – marriage, parents, self-esteem, and money – and what we all have in common in this room is that our SOLUTION to those problems was to drink them away!” And I thought, “I may have just heard the single most brilliant insight into anything, anywhere in my life.”
May 14, 2015
James tells us, when you are lead into tempted, don’t say – God is tempting me. Know where your temptations come from. Within us. Our flesh. Our desires. Our stuff.
That’s why we have to know ourselves.
What tempts you? Where are you weak? Where are you easily knocked off course? Where does trouble come for you?
May 13, 2015
The idea of the future has a mysterious quality to it because it is always beyond us, in one sense not yet fulfilled. As you look ahead, what do you anticipate about the future? What concerns or fears do you have? Do you think that in the midst of the inevitable uncertainty regarding various aspects of our future, there is still reason to be hopeful about what lies ahead for you, for your family, or for others? Why or why not?