New Year in the Old Book.

New Year in the Old Book.

One of the things that I’ve been looking forward to as we kick off 2017 is reading through the Bible again devotionally.  I don’t always get the whole book read in a year as some passages are missed because of interruptions in life.  But I’ve found that a daily practice of systematically working through the Bible has been just as important spiritually as eating a healthy diet is physically.  The objective is one of simply coming before the life changing Word of God on a regular basis and allowing HIM to change us.

In my occupation it’s easy to check out and simply look at the Bible as a text book.  By this I mean merely studying the content for sermon preparation, teaching, and the like.  Actually, that’s probably not too far off for many of us.  In other words, it’s easy to take it for granted.  Somehow we know there’s something different to this book and we have at least one laying around our house even if it’s just the white covered gift Bible we got from our grandmother at High School graduation; but we ignore it.  Thus many times it just sits next to the Webster’s Dictionary until we hit the wall emotionally and seeks an answer from the Divine.

A lot of folks question the validity of scripture and speculate whether it can be trusted or not.  Many people suggest that “because the Bible was written so long ago and was translated so many times” that it just can’t be reliable for us today.  If that is true, then the Bible rightly should be questioned. (more…)

When only God Sees The Good in ADHD

When only God Sees The Good in ADHD

For the longest time I thought the term ADHD was reserved for parents who just didn’t know how to raise their kids. Then God gave me the poster child for the condition in our first born. My son, John, is a genius.  He also has more energy than a platoon of Marines about to storm into enemy territory.  Forget trying to fit John into any kind of mold of properness and organization.  Calmness for him means that only two volcanoes are exploding simultaneously instead of twelve.  But the real awakening came when I realized that if experts were classifying Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder when I was a kid back in the 70s, it would have been me they were talking about. (more…)

My August Political Fast

My August Political Fast

I needed this.  As of last night I came off of my self-imposed Political Fast for the month of August, and honestly I’m not sure I want to go back.  By a political fast I mean that I purposefully stayed away from reading anything or listening to anything having to do with the present political races of Hillary and Trump.  Really the whole system as well.  Sure I was tempted a few times and know that at least once I started down that road of “just to see” what the story behind the latest headline was.  But I didn’t fall prey to the calling and got through August with pretty much no political writ, radio, or video.  I think I’m healthier for it and not certain I want to go back to my old norm.

This is not to say that I no longer have political thinking. I am not saying that I no longer believer that some politics and laws are just bad.  This is not to say that I no longer believe that some candidates are way off and therefore they will be advocating systems and laws which will hurt people.

Yes, I still intellectually and morally believe there is a clear right and wrong.  Some candidates get that and others do not.  But I also believe that the attention to these issues in the political sphere is no longer as high on my emotional radar screen as they once were.  I always knew that the Kingdom of God is the bigger picture.  It’s just taken my emotions a while to catch up.  While some of these political and legal issues are indeed important; they are just not the “most important.”

So after 31 days of political and social media fasting, I’ve arrived at four things that I do know for sure and four things I plan to do. (more…)

Who Said That?

Who Said That?

I’m not sure when or why we started calling him Sir Rob.  I mean he’s not British and as far as I know the Queen has not knighted him.  But Sir Rob just kind of feels like a knight. He’s ex-military and a tough guy but yet carries an air of nobility and wisdom with him that makes you feel like you’re talking with someone in the English Parliament. Except of course when he’s making jokes and swimming in dry humor.  Which I suppose is a lot of the time. But still, Sir Rob just fits.

I also don’t recall when I first heard him pose the question.  I’ve heard it a lot though.  Another one of my friends gets down on himself and begins a degradation process. You know; the “I’m an idiot” type talk.  I’ve done that. Maybe you have.  But right after my friend told himself how bad he was Sir Rob followed up with the question of; “really, who said that?”  In other words, who said he was an idiot, failure, or other? (more…)

Do Christ Followers Really Hate Gays?

Do Christ Followers Really Hate Gays?

Earlier this morning a friend noted a New York Times article from yesterday addressing the political aftermath of the shooting at a gay night club in Orlando.  In the write up the author stated that prior to a recent congressional vote, a “Republican congressman read his colleagues a Bible verse from Romans that calls for the execution of gays.” The truth of the matter is that the book of Romans in the Bible says no such thing.  This type of paid journalism, beyond being unprofessional and dishonest, is part of what is propagating the myth in our present culture that Bible believing Christians hate gays.

Yes, a section of Romans chapter 1 does speak of giving into homosexual temptations as being outside of God’s design but it nowhere calls for hatred and violence toward those people by Christ followers.  Indeed there are cultish groups like the Westborow Baptist Church that spew hatred toward others.  However this does not speak of authentic Christianity.  While people who hold to an authoritative view of scripture may not agree with gay-marriage, they do not hate those who practice such. On the contrary, they love them despite their differences.

This can be easily illustrated by the response of Chick fil-A Sunday following the shooting in Orlando. (more…)