A life (continually) examined

After a friend sent me this link to a Cal Thomas op-ed, a couple of things came together for me this week.

Combining thoughts from four books: A Thicker Jesus, Vanishing Grace, Jouful Exiles and Faitful Presence I have no changed perspectives, just new/fresh words and reminders—here are a few reflections.

Two of these books point to Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, and what I think Thomas is encouraging…it’s what Dietrich Bonhoeffer promoted—it is the idea that by living completely in this secular world that we learn to love God…to have faith in Him…abandoning attempts to make something of ourselves and “living unreservedly in life’s duties, challenges, problems, successes, failures, experiences and perplexities.”

Developing a mindset of continual self-examination of my ideas and worldview that may be holding me captive, is important, looking for whatever is holding me back from bringing God pleasure. If I find something is not consistent with his Word, I repent. Continue reading

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Blind Spots

thanksgivingRecently, a friend of mine took his family out to the theater. While they were waiting for the movie to begin, they saw this trailer for the new Peanuts movie. If you haven’t seen it, take three minutes and watch it.

Like me, you’ll probably chuckle. My friend said that they, too, were tickled. Somewhere in the middle of the trailer, the whole gang is mentioned…

…with one exception: Franklin, the one kid of color in the gang. Continue reading

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There is evil in the world

q-8-t-emanuel-a.m.e.-church-700x525We humans are great problem solvers: we overcome distance with phone calls, emails, satellites and airplanes; we overcome summer heat with air-conditioning and winter cold with forced-air heating; we overcome illnesses with vaccinations; the mundane tasks of life like vacuuming the house with robots—and the list goes on.

But after all our resourcefulness, two challenges remain for which solutions are evasive: evil and death. After all our resourcefulness, the solutions to overcoming evil and death remain universal questions with no easy solutions. Can Christians offer comfort and perhaps a unique perspective?

I believe Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston, along with the families of those killed, did that two weeks ago.

Continue reading

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Loving your enemies

I haven’t yet run across anyone who was not stunned by the evil visited on the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston earlier this week…to say we are all heart sick isn’t adequate…we mourn with those who mourn today.

During the bail hearing, a bit unusual but apparently permitted in South Carolina, were some of the comments of relatives of those murdered by the self-confessed 21 year old who committed the crime.

Stunning the world, many said to him, “I forgive you…” Continue reading

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Celebrating with great joy!

SamburuMy friend and colleague, Rev. Peter Munguti, is the national director of Bible Translation and Literacy in Kenya. He made this post recently on FB of the Samburu people people celebrating the arrival of God’s Word in their language. Peter reports that during the ceremony it was declared by the Samburu people, “God is no longer a foreign God…today he speaks Samburu!” Continue reading

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In the midst of the storm

 On Monday, March 10, 1975, Wycliffe missionaries John and Carolyn Miller were about to begin an eight month ordeal that would test every Christian principle they had ever learned (Carolyn has since documented their journey in her book, “Captured.”) The war in South Vietnam was raging, and the Viet Cong, supported by North Vietnam, were gaining the upper hand. Fourteen years earlier the Millers had started learning the Bru language of Vietnam and Laos, and by 1975 they and their Bru co-workers were in the final stages of checking the New Testament before typesetting and printing. But the fighting kept moving closer.  Continue reading

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Now I Understand!

Many people don’t realize there are over 400 sign languages in the world today that are the heart language of those in the deaf community who have learned to sign in one of these languages.

Receiving the Scriptures in your own language gives the best opportunity for transformation, and the “heart language” makes a big difference and impact on your ability to understand and apply the truths of the Bible.

Mr. Hideo Araki from Japan is deaf. In this brief video he shares a testimony about the challenges of understanding the printed Japanese Bible and the dramatic difference that the Japanese Sign Language Bible is making in his life.

Used by permission of Mr. Hideo Araki.

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