This week I was reading one of my favorite sections of the Bible. It might seem unusual to you, but for me it shows just how real the people of the early Christian church were.
It’s in Acts chapter 12, when “Peter was kept in prison . . .” (verse 5). And by in prison, the writer tells us that Peter was kept between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood at the entrance.
He was going nowhere.... Read More
The English language is constantly changing and morphing, and it goes where it wants to. Popular opinions shift, and so do the tools of communication. Existing words lose or change their meaning; new words erupt.
This is especially true around words used to describe human sexuality. Gay used to mean “lighthearted” or “merry.” In the traditional Christmas carol “Deck the Halls,” revelers are encouraged, “Don we now our gay apparel.” The main theme song from the TV cartoon show The... Read More
That sounds easy, right?
Or maybe it just sounds like what we should do, but we know it’s not actually what we really do. We are so easily distracted by work, family, hobbies that we often feel guilty that God has fallen to the bottom of the pile.
But what if we don’t need to change our thinking about our activities? What if we simply change our attitudes about our activities?
So often we think that our time at church... Read More
Sooner or later your family will have to make some hard medical decisions about the care being offered to a loved one whose condition seems hopeless. Perhaps you’ve been through that already. The most likely scenario involves the decision process around a frail and elderly person for whom a complicated and expensive medical procedure might offer a few more weeks or months of life. Do you put a 94-year-old person through hip surgery, for instance? Or open heart surgery? Even... Read More
I am so good at not worrying.
Ha! . . . until I wake up at 2 A.M. And then all my stress catches up with me—and keeps me up for two hours.
That’s when I wonder how I am going to cram in all the things I need to teach my kiddos before I unleash them on society in just a few years. I am inadequate at parenting. I’m doing so much so wrong. And what if they make... Read More
I suppose it was inevitable.
One of the most popular social media websites uses as its tagline, “Broadcast Yourself.” Given the immense popularity of online pornography, I guess it was just a matter of time before people started to take naked selfies and send them to their friends and lovers. It’s so easy! The technology in your smartphone makes you a movie producer or boudoir photographer if you choose, and it provides an instantaneous distribution system.
But something like 10%... Read More
I thought I was doing well with my morning quiet time until I read this quote:
“Today we teach young Christians . . . to have devotions or quiet time. Normally this consists of ten to thirty minutes a day spent reading the Bible, praying, and perhaps reading something from a devotional book. Along with church on Sundays and perhaps involvement in a small group, we hope this will enable them to withstand the blizzard swirling around them.
“It won’t.... Read More
Do you ever read the “Comments” section underneath online magazine articles? You need a strong stomach. When they can hide behind a fake screen name, people come out with the most disappointingly abusive and vulgar statements. Even YouTube music videos seem to bring out the beast in people as they shout and curse at one another. We live in an age of h8ters.
I have also been pretty glum for many months, years actually, about the level of bitterness and... Read More
Ah, July Fourth, the day when citizens of the United States celebrate independence with fireworks and parades and cookouts. Really, though, the celebration of Independence Day comes with the opportunity to remember that all freedom comes with sacrifice. Not safety. Not comfort.
The people who fought for independence could have simply accepted the status quo and hid in their homes. But they craved freedom and were willing to sacrifice their personal comforts and possibly even their lives so that their... Read More