Monday, July 4, 2016

Success and Rhythm and non-drug-induced epiphanies

I'm listening to Beyond the To Do List, and up comes Rob Bell on "Being Present with Rhythm, Routines and Rituals": 

http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/BeyondTheToDoList/~3/ssYjvb7ILZk/

I know not everyone does... but I like Rob Bell. If we spent more time appreciating wisdom rather than vilifying him personally, I think the world would be better off...

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Theological tidbits

There are a ton of interesting spiritual messages coming up as I'm Listening to The Ray Edwards Show (#233: Cliff Ravenscraft, "I Am Not Spock"): http://rayedwards.com/233/

or "It's Not About the Microphone" (Part Two of Two)

Note: This episode is the second half of my conversation with Cliff Ravenscraft, aka The Podcast Answer Man. You can listen to Part One by clicking here.

Cliff Ravenscraft is the king of helping people start their own podcast. He's helped thousands of people do it. But wait – there's more…

#233- Cliff

This is fascinating conversation ended up being so far-ranging, we had to make it two episodes. We'll discover…

  • Why typecasting is not necessarily a bad thing.
  • How the musical Hamilton changed Cliff's life – and so many others.
  • The nature of ambition, service, and selfishness.
  • And so much more!

Click here to download or listen to this episode now.

Links

Wow – what a lot of links we mentioned. I think I got most of them.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Fruits of the Spirit?

Are the Fruits of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness and self control) a thermometer, or a thermostat?

Saturday, April 23, 2016

It's not only about Jesus...

...but also the leaders and followers of Jesus:

"Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith."

‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭13:7‬ ‭ESV‬‬
http://bible.com/59/heb.13.7.esv

Friday, April 1, 2016

Is conflict OK?

I have a theological concerned with some kinds of "conflict".

I agree that it's not inherently un-Biblical, because there's plenty of diversity in the Body and sometimes people aren't thinking on the same wavelength.

But in a church, sometimes there are major decisions that aren't by consensus. In that case, is it simply that the minority of the congregation isn't listening to the Holy Spirit?  It can't be that the Spirit is giving two contradictory directions.

Listening to River Valley Leadership Podcast (Episode 010: Running From Conflict): http://leaders.rivervalley.org/podcast//episode-010-running-from-conflict

Conflict is something that we all face as leaders. It's inevitable. You can't control when it will come up, but you can control what you do in the midst of it. Will you run from it? Or will you lean into the tensions you face to create a space for everyone to be better? Join the podcast crew as they dive into a discussion around one of the most relevant topics in leadership: Conflict.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Do you belong to Jesus

"He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn't produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more."
‭‭John‬ ‭15:2‬ ‭NLT‬‬
http://bible.com/116/jhn.15.2.nlt

If "every branch of mine" really means "every branch that falsely professes to be mine"... Why doesn't it say that? "Of mine" or "In me" seems pretty clear.

What is "fruit"?

"You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father."
‭‭John‬ ‭14:13‬ ‭NLT‬‬
http://bible.com/116/jhn.14.13.nlt

"Fruit is the life of Jesus in you being lived out through you." -Wes Feltner

Note that Jesus is doing the doing. The Father is glorified because you asked Jesus (not an idol or whatever), and Jesus does it, not so you have a trinket, but so that the Father is glorified.

John has some deep stuff...

Saturday, March 19, 2016

I never noticed...

It's not just in Acts; Jesus Himself had a ministry to the Greeks, directly and personally...

"Some Greeks who had come to Jerusalem for the Passover celebration paid a visit to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee. They said, "Sir, we want to meet Jesus." Philip told Andrew about it, and they went together to ask Jesus."

‭‭John‬ ‭12:20-22‬ ‭NLT‬‬
http://bible.com/116/jhn.12.20-22.nlt

Sunday, February 28, 2016

NT examples of corporate prayer?

"And when they heard it, they lifted their voices together to God and said, "Sovereign Lord, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and everything in them, who through the mouth of our father David, your servant, said by the Holy Spirit, "'Why did the Gentiles rage, and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers were gathered together, against the Lord and against his Anointed'— for truly in this city there were gathered together against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, along with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel, to do whatever your hand and your plan had predestined to take place. And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus." And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness."
‭‭Acts‬ ‭4:24-31‬ ‭ESV‬‬
http://bible.com/59/act.4.24-31.esv

Friday, January 29, 2016

Unpopular Politics

Falwell Jr. endorsed Trump? Of course. When the Democratic Party returns to its core identity of "speaking for the voiceless", it will prioritize that value over its value of "sexual liberty at all costs". At that point, it will protect unborn humans as strongly as it protects unborn Bald Eagles. And when that happens, Christians will realize that the Democratic Party has a Christlike compassion for human needs, while the Republican Party has a Christlike understanding of human nature. And then, the "political fight" will be a fair one. Until then, Falwell and his ilk would much rather vote for a wall-builder than a baby-killer, and our political process goes nowhere. #UnpopularOpinion

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Evangelical politics is mean

The Brutalism of Ted Cruz: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/12/opinion/the-brutalism-of-ted-cruz.html

This indictment stands not only against Ted Cruz, but against every self-described "Christian Conservative" I've ever met:

> "Cruz is a stranger to most of what would generally be considered the Christian virtues: humility, mercy, compassion and grace. Cruz's behavior in the Haley case is almost the dictionary definition of pharisaism: an overzealous application of the letter of the law in a way that violates the spirit of the law, as well as fairness and mercy."

I'll be blunt: In an effort to pursue and celebrate sexual liberty, the Democratic part (which is usually the champion and voice of "the little guy") has abandoned the responsibility to represent the unborn -- who, while inconvenient, are (by any scientific measure) biological humans whose only rights limitation is by virtue of their physical location. If they were Bald Eagles nesting on your roof, they'd be protected. But because they're humans (unique DNA with brain waves - that's human) they can be pulled out feet first and have their brains suctioned out, if that's the choice a woman wants to make.

(It's really strange. We don't allow my "choice" of, say, prostitution or drug use with my own body. But we celebrate the "choice" of killing a unique biological human.)

Republicans see that hypocrisy and freak out, abandoning the Democratic platform (with its professed goals of grace and mercy) for the Republican one, which is basically libertarian at the expense of the disadvantaged. But, at least it doesn't approve of chopping and suctioning babies.

(Except, Trump does. I doubt very many Evangelicals realize that.)

The Democrats counter that religion and politics don't mix, without realizing that abortion isn't a religious issue. In fact, the only thing that could possibly defend it is to postulate a spiritual "soul" that's not present in a fetus. (The pre-brain-wave argument tries to make that point... but, then, why didn't Obama support a ban on the so-called "partial-birth abortion"? Because "the decision is the woman's to make" which sounds great until you realize that we ban people from making all sorts of far less morbid choices about their own bodies.)

So, that's how you have the mess of so-called Christians gleefully supporting the most un-Christian politicians they can find.

The day the Democrats renounce their pro-choice platform and put their political might behind supporting live births and adoptions (which, right now, is a corrupt system that financially manipulates adoptive parents to the tune of thousands and thousands of dollars) is the day you'll see the Christian wheat separated from the chaff.

Until then, Ted Cruz will be plenty popular.