Jazz at the Lord’s Supper?

The Lord’s Supper does something to me! It makes me sense things and feel things that are physical. God comes to me through the senses, the actions, the taking, the eating, the drinking. We “act out” with our bodies what our spirits do – eat Christ, drink Christ, love Christ, rejoice in Christ. It is dancing the Gospel. Continue reading

Libel proof!

I read recently of a man who is in prison for murder and who brought a libel suit against a lawyer who accused him of another murdering another man as well. The judge ruled that the prisoner was “libel proof” and could not bring the suit. In other words, whatever could be said about the prisoner was not nearly so bad as what he was in prison for. He could not be libeled. That set me to thinking… Continue reading

If you write a book on church time!

I might get in trouble on this one – big time! But I’ve always wondered how it is that pastors who write best selling books while on the church clock get to keep the money from the sale of that book. It is hard to believe that much of the research, writing, editing and final copy work is done on personal time alone. Which means they are already getting paid, by the church, for the work. Continue reading

The Real Mary

Scott McKnight has a new book, (so brand new I haven’t read it), titled The Real Mary. No doubt about it, Mary has intrigued Christ-followers for centuries. Her unqualified “yes” to the God, her availability to a mission, her nearness to the Messiah, her full obedience in a broken world in contrast to Eve’s disobedience in paradise are all reasons we somehow get back to a discussion about Mary. As Max Lucado points out (and I paraphrase) at the one person who knew more of God’s plan than any other on planet earth was a young teenage girl fighting pimples in an out of the way Judean village who had no pedigree and no future. But her yes to God changed the world. “Mary full of grace, the Lord is with thee.”

 Here is a link to an article by Scott on Mary in Christianity Today.

No, I’m not a Roman Catholic – just in case all you heresy hounds out there thought you sniffed out a new victim.

Dallas Willard: Don’t make outreach a primary goal

Common wisdom says that inwardly focused churches need to focus on outreach in order to change. Dallas Willard challenges this wisdom in Renovation of the Heart:

“It is, I gently suggest, a serious error to make “outreach” a primary goal of the local congregation, and especially so when those who are already “with us” have not become clear-headed and devoted apprentices of Jesus, and are not, for the most part, solidly progressing along the path. Outreach is one essential task of Christ’s people, and among them there will always be those especially gifted for evangelism. But the most successful work of outreach would be the work of inreach that turns people, wherever they are, into lights in the darkened world.

A simple goal for the leaders of a particular group would be to bring all those in attendance to understand clearly what it means to be a disciple of Jesus and to be solidly committed to discipleship in their whole life. That is, when they are asked who they are, the first words out of their mouth would be, ‘I am an apprentice of Jesus Christ.’ This goal would have to be approached very gently and lovingly and patiently with existing groups, where the people involved have not understood this to be part of their membership commitment.”

Born again iPod and other episodes from my world

The iPod update didn’t work. The techs thought it would. I hoped it would. But the volume control is still erratic. Of course, that only happens when I use it and not when the techs examine it. But they took my word for it and gave me a new one. No use monkeying around with the old one. Reminds me of Jesus. Didn’t try to fix the old spirit, so he gave me a new one. Continue reading

I’ve been thinking about mirrors

Let me be clear before you let your mind wander! I mean mirrors in the gym. One of the first things I noticed when I started going to the gym years ago was all the mirrors. You couldn’t go anyplace in the gym without looking at yourself. How vain, I thought. The gym had a lot of the “beautiful people” with the perfect bodies, and I just thought they were in love with themselves, the ultimate narcissists. But I was wrong… Continue reading

Check out this practical way to help

I came across an organization called Kiva. It enables people like you and me to invest in people around the world who are starting their own businesses and for really short money can become independent and financially self-supporting. This is a great way to help people in struggling economies with no prospects. Check it out. The money you send is a loan, so you can continue investing. Gifts can be $25 or whatever. Many of these enterprises only require $1,500 or $2,000 which can go a long way in some economies. Become an international venture capitalist overnight!!! And pray for the people you help.

Christians are supposed to marry Christians, right?

Sure, that’s right. And so some Christians who want to get married fudge on the word “Christian.” Happens all the time. “They said a prayer when they were a child.” “They might not go to church much but they read their Bible everyday.” “They just haven’t found a church they are comfortable with – the church is full of hypocrites.” “He (or she) is a Christian but they are very personal about their faith and aren’t comfortable sharing.” “He (or she) is starting to come to church now that we are dating.” “They are Baptist, or Catholic, or whatever.” (Of course, we know there are two kinds of Baptists, two kinds of Roman Catholics, two kinds of Methodists or whatever – those who have the gift of eternal life and those who don’t!) Continue reading