“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.” That’s the verse that came to mind yesterday morning around 9:15 or so when I felt like things were starting to go south. It wasn’t that things were going bad but rather just a sense that the day was beginning to turn into more of a “Steve” day than a “God” day. I was already on my way to “accomplishing things” but sensed little power and direction from above. I had just turned out some sermon prep and was ready to tic a number of other things off the check list. In the eyes of man I was on target to having a very successful day of busyness. But maybe that’s where the problem was. It’s so easy to allow the rush of the land and agenda of our corporate lifestyle to crowd God out. The day actually started off on the wrong foot when I checked email on my phone not even five minutes after waking up and it wasn’t going much better by mid-morning. So there I was, wrestling with the example of Jesus in Mark 1:35 and feeling like I had just gone back to the school house of prayer. I was reminded once again that unless the first breaths of the day are guarded militantly the world will take the rest of the day away.
The Bible? Our live webcast this Sunday is going to be GREAT. I’ve been looking forward to this episode from the start as it will address the very real and practical question of the authenticity of the Bible. Can we trust the Bible? Isn’t it just another book written by men a long time ago? Does it have relevance for today? What are the facts and the fallacies? What are the myths and the evidences? These and many other questions will be asked and addressed this Sunday night at 8p central and we’d love to have you stop by. If you have a Google + account you can participate in Q&A with other viewers on the Google + Sunday Night Discussions page. So grab a friend and come and see!
It’s all most that time again. Join us tonight for Sunday Night Discussions as we will be looking at “The Nature of Man.” In this discussion we will be considering such questions as Who are we? Where did we come from? Where are we going? What of our brokenness and whether or not there’s any hope?
You can also participate in the discussion by sending in questions if you have a Google + account. Just look for the Sunday Night Discussion page and event and log in. It’s been fun watching this webcast evolve and I can’t wait to have you with us tonight. So grab a friend and come and see. Look forward to seeing you live at 8p central.
In this week’s show we will look at world views and consider how they influence our beliefs, thinking, and actions. We will ask how we arrive at our understanding of the world and what ramifications accompany those paradigms. If you have a Google + account you can also log into our SND page and send in questions. So grab a friend and come and see. Look forward to seeing you live at 8p central tonight.
I never really liked the title of the NPR program “All Things Considered.” Maybe it’s because the title somehow just felt shallow. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me, but it seemed like “all things considered” really means “all things that Robert Siegel and the producers want to consider.” Like many NPR programs, there seems to be a bent to purposefully stay away from and shun any position which has even an inkling of a serious Christian worldview. That is unless the point is to attack such a paradigm. Yet I wonder; what would the fabric of any culture actually look like where the vast majority of people held Christ as King and the Bible as authoritative? What could theoretically happen when an authentic Christian Worldview was actually played out in a society?
Yes, I know that many in our present American and Western cultures would flee from such an idea like an OU fan trying to get out of Memorial Stadium in Austin right after the Longhorns won. Some would even fight such a proposition with a special antagonism. It reminds me of the View episode back in 2006 when Rosie O’Donnell postulated to Elisabeth Hasselbeck that “Radical Christianity is just as threatening as Radical Islam.”
It’s official! This Sunday at 8p central in the US, “Sunday Night Discussions” will be launching here on Kingdomology. So what’s SND? Well I’m really glad you asked. In short, SND will be a venue for hard questions regarding faith and exploring the deeper Kingdom of God beyond mere religion. In this live webcast format, my friend, Robert Tippett and I will be discussing a number of questions that people have about life, faith, and what Jesus referred to as the Kingdom of God. The purpose of the live webcast is to offer up some real answers to honest questions regarding faith and at the same time illustrate how God’s Kingdom really does intersect with us in the here and now. Periodically we will have guest on the show and if you have a Google+ account you are definitely encouraged to send in questions while the show is live. We’re looking forward to a fun time and I’m praying that SND will be a benefit to both those who are seeking answers as well as those who are growing in their faith. So grab a friend and join us this Sunday for our Maiden Voyage of SND.
You have to admit that sometimes Jesus said some funny things. That statement about blind guides “straining out a gnat but swallowing a camel” and that it was “easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God” rate right up there at the top. Jesus would often use way out illustrations to make profound points. When it comes to a humble faith I think he hit the nail on the head in Luke 13 when he exhorted the crowds that unless they “became like little children they would never enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” Become like little children? The old King James translation of the Greek is even more radical in reading that “except you be converted and become like little children.” Considering all the times that Jesus allowed little children into his presence and rebuked those who hindered the kiddos, you get the feel that children are pretty important to the creator of the cosmos.
Sometimes I just get tired. If anything, the word journey better describes the walk with Christ more than a happy walk in the park. It gets hard at times. It gets fatiguing at times. A marathon, or maybe a triathlon, is more descriptive of what authentic Christianity is like, rather than a Caribbean cruise. Yes, I get tired sometimes. It is tiring to continue to pray for years and not see the results my heart longs for. It is just downright oppressive at times trying to calmly and lovingly speak toward Biblical righteousness in a culture that wholly embraces abortion, homosexual lifestyles, and philosophical relativity. It gets disheartening to see more and more people who wear the name of Christ in Western Europe and America drop Biblical morality like a bad losing streak in favor of liberal cultural and political correctness.
My last surviving grandparent crossed over the river into the other side of eternity yesterday afternoon. Granddad Stephens was 97. When I think of the legacy that my grandfather left, I almost always think of the song, “Leader of the Band” by Dan Fogelberg. Granddad Stephens had a natural talent for music and he pursued that as his career in life retiring as a High School band director not far from where I grew up. Maybe more importantly though, along with my grandmother, he brought music into the lives of his children and even down into my own soul today. Granddad, I know that like King David of old, is now playing and dancing in HIS presence. For the rest of our family who are left behind, we are thanking God and remembering the good things that have been built into our lives by granddad hands. He left a legacy.
The reality in this situation is that we all have an opportunity to leave a legacy. Whether we like it or not, unless we move to the desert by ourselves, we’re going to leave some kind of imprint, good or bad, on those around us. The question is what kind of legacy will we leave.
This past weekend I participated in a great men’s retreat north of Philadelphia. I’ve only been on the east coast a handful of times so it was great to make new friends with a common bond of Christ. We drew closer to Christ, grew in our walk, and shared stories from our own pilgrimages. With the coming of Memorial Day this weekend I was struck with the power of some stories from older guys who lived through the Viet Nam War. I was born in 1969 so I have no real memory of that tragic chapter in the history of the United States. But these men know quite a bit about that season and still carry scars today. It was in one of our final discussions of the weekend that part of their pain became very clear to me. Like the vets from the Korean War; these Viet Nam survivors were and are forgotten along with so many who died there.