Month: June 2015
June 29, 2015
Christ comes to free us; he comes to fit us for Kingdom living, and he comes to fill us, to fill us with his Holy Spirit. And that’s our need, friends, the power of the Holy Spirit.
June 27, 2015
When nothing stands between our heart and God’s heart, God can become our hiding place rather than the One from whom we hide.
Philip Tallon ~ Martyred Velociraptors and Vegetarian Vampires: The Christian Roots of Redemption in Hollywood
June 25, 2015
There’s an operative logic of redemption running so deep in Western storytelling that, given enough time, we should expect that all villains will eventually become heroes. Origen may have been wrong to state that even the devil will eventually be saved, but a certain kind of “narrative universalism” is true in Hollywood.
June 24, 2015
And so we come to see that living in simplicity goes hand in hand with a life in pursuit of holiness, or sanctifying grace. For if you do a word search of “simplicity” through Wesley’s works, you will quite often find that he speaks of it in relation to Mary’s action of sitting by Jesus feet, drawing deeply from the well of the “one thing” known as intimate discipleship rather than Martha’s actions of being concerned about “many things.”
June 22, 2015
Rev. Clementa Pinckney, Cynthia Hurd, Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, Tywanza Sanders, Ethel Lance, Susie Jackson, Depayne Middleton Doctor, Rev. Daniel Simmons, and Myra Thompson aren’t just victims of a hate crime. They were martyrs. They were bold and faithful witnesses to the Lord unto the end. They became the gospel in flesh and blood. They took seriously the vocation of picking up their crosses and following Jesus.
June 20, 2015
Racial reconciliation calls people to have “out of the ordinary” moments frequently. It challenges our social and spiritual status quo. One response to the tragedy at Mother Emanuel should be for churches to have more “out of the ordinary” moments with people of a different race around conversations that make us uncomfortable. It is the best way forward.
June 18, 2015
Do not think for an instant that the evil that pulls the trigger in a Bible study at a black church is different than the evil that drives ISIS recruits to kill Christians; it is the same evil. Christians died worshiping.
June 17, 2015
The Lord’s prayer therefore begins
by putting, not us,
but God the Father
at the center of the picture.
The circumference can only be right
when the center is right.
June 13, 2015
Incidentally, the Greek word translated “required of you” can also be translated as “a payment due.” That is the real point of the parable. Not just your possessions, but your life belongs to God. That is the classical, Christian understanding of our lives. We are sojourners here, pilgrims, travelers. In the beautiful words of the Letter to the Hebrews, “Here on earth have we no continuing place.” We are here for a short time. We are supposed to use that time in order to live responsibly as stewards of the gifts that God has given to us. Christians have always believed that. We are just travelers, passing through, so make the most of it.
June 11, 2015
Jeremiah reminds us that we do not respond with hatred or anger to those who have plotted our demise. We pray for the peace and prosperity of the country. We pray for the well-being of a church which celebrates false prophets (Jeremiah 28). We realize – and this is the real lesson of Jeremiah – that judgement is actually a “means of grace.” The historic churches in the western world are under God’s judgment. I do not want to add to anyone’s weariness by repeating all the signs of this. But I do think we need to remember that Jeremiah promised that in 70 years their exile would come to an end and that God would, once again, bless them.