i wish i was a neutron bomb, for once I could go off. - eddie vedder

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

God is Good!

I wanted my last post to read this way. He truly is good.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Bring Back Abortion!

Social justice is a huge issue in today’s church. Maybe it has something to do with Jesus being so into social justice or something like that. If you pick a relevant magazine or go to any cutting edge Christian blog you will see a lot of space devoted to social justice. It is really fantastic to see a renewed charge for this. For too long the church has done nothing for social justice, and I am excited to be part of the resurgence.

But are we really seeing a resurgence? According to most sources the answer appears to be a resounding yes! There is more interest in the church now than ever when it come to issues like poverty, health care and women’s rights. But here is my question…Did we just change out our old issues of social justice with these that seem more hip. If we look back 15 years we see a church that was equally passionate about issues of social justice. This was seen especially in the issue of abortion.

To my knowledge I have yet to see someone who identifies with the emergent conversation stand up on the issue of abortion in the same way that they stand up for the other issues of the day. We cannot argue that within the emergent movement social issues like abortion have taken a back seat to issues like the AIDS crisis in Africa. So what happened? Why do we feel like today we are so much more socially compassionate than ever before?

Another characteristic of the emergent conversation is an understanding that God has no political stance. He is neither conservative nor liberal, neither republican nor democrat. This idea could not be any truer. For years it has been understood that Christians in general are Republicans. Terms like Conservative Christian seem to go hand in hand. To fix this it appears to me that the emergent conversation has indirectly been a driving force behind a shift to the left. I say indirectly because I am not convinced that this was ever the attempt. The emergent conversation finds a lot of its style in the culture of the day. Popular culture is generally leaning politically left, thus these leanings are picked up by the emergent conversation. Popular culture celebrates causes like health care for all, debt relief, and women’s equality and we can see these causes slowly gaining strength in Christian circles…especially in the emergent conversation.

On the other hand, issues like abortion, family values, and public prayer seem to be slowly losing steam in the emergent conversation for the same reasons as stated above. It grieves me to see that in an attempt to rid the church of political leanings, instead we seem to be exchanging one political ideology for another. Many see the church as a pawn for the Republican Party. I am not a fan of this, but the answer is not to become a pawn for the other. The answer, as with many things, lies somewhere in the middle.

I believe that if JC were around today, he would that poverty, and abortion. He would hate that people are dying with treatable sicknesses, and that children were being adopted by homosexual parents. I completely agree that God does not have a political alignment, but we must be careful that we don’t exchange one bad thing for another. We need to live for social justice on both sides of the fence. We must be neither democrat, nor republican, but solely Christians.

Monday, May 09, 2005

I suck at blogging

Gina (the blog entitled Meet Virginia in my “blogs” column to the right) as rightly pointed out that I am obsessive kind of person. Not that I am really clean or anything that you commonly associate with one who is obsessive, but I tend to become obsessed with certain hobbies (aka addictions) for a certain time period and then drop it for months at a time. Take video games for instance. I could go on a kick for video games and play them 15 hours a week for a month or two, and then resign and not play them at all for 6 months. I am weird like that. For those of you who have been reading my blog you may realize now that I was on a blogging kick from January through march, and had a great time, but as of late I have felt little drive to get out there and do it.

I am not sure what I wrong with me, and I kind of feel that this is who I am. Is it a bad thing the way I obsess? Someone once asked me if I finish things that I start, and the answer to that is yes, I do. The problem with many of the things I take up is that the only finishing point for the activity is death. I will never finish blogging. I can go from theme to theme, but never will I have completed my blog. The same goes for video games. I may go from game to game but I have never gotten to a point where I succeeded and finished video games. It is tough but I just want to write an excuse as to why you haven’t seen me on here for a week. Truth is I am pooped. But tomorrow is another day and with it comes a new addiction for me. Maybe it will be one that calls me back to this little cyberspace that has been my passion for 4 months.


God, not sure where to go from here. You know my heart. I have had a great time with this, and look forward to doing it some more. Give me a passion to do it, and if not, for something that changes me every day. I have enjoyed this time blogging with you very much so far, and I look forward to seeing where you take it from here.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Treasure Hunt

Matthew 19:27 – Then peter said to (Jesus), “We’ve given up everything to follow you. What will we get out of it?”


Here’s a reality that I don’t live in. There are rewards in heaven for the way we live our life on earth. Actually I am quite surprised by Jesus’ response to this question. If I were JC I would have explained to Peter that the joy of serving the Lord is joy enough for him. I would ask him to stop grumbling, because he is working for the Lord. But of course this is nothing like what Jesus says.

I was surprised to read that Jesus explains to Peter at some length that he can count on treasures in heaven for every good act he does. But how can this be. Is it ok to have selfish heavenly motivation? Can I give to others and rejoice in the heavenly rewards I will have? Is this what Jesus intended? I am not sure if I have taken this too far but I want to live in the heavenly treasure reality. I want to start laying them up for myself. I have never really thought about them in regards to my Christian walk. I always knew that treasure awaited me in heaven, but I want to be anxious for it because it appears that this is what Christ encourages us to do.

Of course I am reminded of another of Jesus sayings. On a couple of occasions he said about the arrogant that they have their reward in full. So I see that if I am not careful with my pride I may not be able to look forward to the treasures that await. What a catch 22.


God, help me to strip down my pride and arrogance. I want to live anxiously awaiting the treasures I have stored up and the treasures I will store up. I realize that this is a focus for ministry, not the focus. Pleasing you will still be first in my heart. Help me to make sure of that. Tonight and tomorrow as I live my life, remind me of the treasure principle, and help me to set up a pattern that turns into a lifestyle that lives in ready expectation for the rewards you will pour out on me in heaven. I love you Lord.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

J.C.'s M.O.

Matthew 14:28 – Then Peter said to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you by walking on the water.”


Jesus is so amazing. What got me about this story today is peters direction for Jesus. JC is out there walking on the water and Peter isn’t quite sure if it is really him or not. He thought it could be a ghost or some other spirit. So in order to see if it really was Jesus he had to do a test. This test shows us a lot about Jesus and the way his disciples saw him.

I have always understood this test to mean something like – if you can make me walk on the water then I will believe it is you. This would make sense, because only God himself could do that. But this was not the test that we see here. The test was one that checked Jesus character. It tested his personality. Peter held up his standard operating procedure and compared to the one he saw before him the test was whether or not he would call Peter out to him. Jesus was known for calling people to follow him, and this was the standard by which the disciples recognized him here. He has done the same in our lives. We can know that he is Lord because he will keep calling us to him over and over again no matter how many times we have gotten it wrong.

So what is there to learn from this? We need to be ready to be called to the uncomfortable situations of the world because this is JC’s standard. He proves himself to us daily by calling us over and over again. The truth is if you know Jesus you will be called to him. That is the way it is and it is a good meter to see how well we know him. How has he called you today?


Lord help me to answer when you call. I want to keep your proven system working. Teach me to be a recruiter the way you were. I am willing to got to the uncomfortable situations with you. Thanks for calling me.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

That's the Kingdom of God

Matthew 10:7-8 – “Go and announce that the kingdom of heaven is near. Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons. Give as freely as you have received.”


One thing that I don’t do is announce that the kingdom of heaven is near. Is this something that we are still required to do? The only people we see doing this today are the homeless with their cardboard signs, and that is usually in movies. The homeless don’t seem to have the spirituality that they used to. But my question is what is the kingdom of heaven, and what is our responsibility to it? What should we be declaring to others. It is bad that I don’t know this? Anyone have any ideas on what the Kingdom of heaven is and what our responsibility is to it today?

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Straight Priorities

Matt 8:21-22 - Another disciple said to him, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” But Jesus told him, “Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead.”


Ready for some debate? For those who read my blog you know that one of my goals is to read scripture in a fresh way. I don’t want to take any of my culture or my “Christian” ideas into it. Sometimes that leads to awesome discoveries for my walk, and sometimes that leaves me even more confused than I started. Case and point – today’s verse.

The majority of my life has now been as a Christian. One thing that the church has always taught is that your family should come before just about anything. We say that God comes before our families, but in practice he doesn’t, and for the most part we are OK with that. But I got to thinking today, does the Bible place family before ministry? Should it be that way?

May I suggest that perhaps we should place ministry before our family? I am not saying that this is right, or that I do this, I am just suggesting that perhaps we could make a case for this in the bible. The verse above is just one example of scriptures calling us to serve with Jesus before we take care of the needs of our family. Elsewhere in scripture we see Jesus allowing his disciples to leave their careers and their families to follow him. The real kicker is in 1 Corinthians 7:29 – Now let me say this, dear brothers and sisters: The time that remains is very short, so husbands should not le marriage be their primary concern.

What I think we have is a disconnect in our Christian world between love and action. Can we love the Lord more than anything in this world and not have time to serve him because of our family obligations. I am not ripping on anyone, but I got to tell you that I get this excuse all the time. I love my job but the hardest part of it for me is getting people to jump in and do ministry with me. I am sure that the bulk of the problem is my fault, for not being a good enough motivator, but this excuse is just tough for me. It sounds so noble, and I am not sure that anyone has been called on this before, but let me say this, - If you are unable to do the Lords work because your family is your priority, perhaps your family has a whole needs a new set of priorities.

Then there is the idea that my family is my ministry. That is valid, but it is something that we never see in scripture as far as I can tell. Please don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that family is not important. My only thought is that most of us admit that God is more important. We need to align our actions up with that.


Lord help me to not only love you most but to live for you most at the same time. I don’t want to categorize my time, I want to be a Christian all the time. Whatever you are calling me to do is my primary concern. I live for you first, help me to do that.