Saturday, March 19, 2016

What We Feed Will Dominate.....

Purely by accident (which is how it usually works) I came across on post on a blog on the Western Seminary site....Transformed Blog - Living the Gospel in an Every Day World. The article was entitled 5 Effortless Ways To Be Transformed by God's Word. The article talked about how to get more Bible into your daily life....and the consequences of not doing so. 
A quote in the article captured my attention 
However if we don’t intentionally prioritize biblical formation above other formation, these outside voices will unconsciously shape us more than God.
These simple practices are the regular ploughing of our heart with God’s Word. You will be more apt to think God’s thoughts, challenge cultural norms, spot your own blind spots, feel spiritually nourished and grow in godliness. As your appetite for and commitment to God’s Word grows, it will drown out the cultural noise all around you.
And then….there’s Facebook. I am drawn to it especially now that I’ve gotten very interested in the presidential race. And Facebook IS a gift. In fact, Facebook is where I came across the article that inspired this post. So it is kind of a Catch 22. I don’t want to swear off Facebook altogether yet I want something more substantial than just Facebook and Pinterest shaping my thoughts and life.
So I am going to try……

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Perceived Oppression

They say a picture is worth a thousand words but never underestimate the power of a short story to convey a deep truth. Jesus knew this, of course, which is why he told so many “stories.” Sure, some folks didn’t get the gist of what he was saying, however for those who had ears to hear, the meaning came through loud and clear.

A story is not nearly as threatening as….say….a persuasive essay. The meaning and lesson in a story kind of sneaks in under the radar. Sometimes when we say things flat out in plain English, we ignite that fight or flight reaction in the brain and the message we try to get across falls on deaf ears. Not so much with a story. The meaning slides in under the radar without too much protest because…’s just a story.

And that is the way the author of the blog post “When You’re Accustomed To Privilege, Equality Feels Like Oppression” gets his message across in an Aesop’s Fables kind of way.

He pokes a finger at a group of folks who feel that society’s slippery slope move toward equality is oppression. Here is a quote from the blog post…..

All this anger we see from people screaming “All Lives Matter” in response to black protesters at rallies… All this anger we see from people insisting that THEIR “religious freedom” is being infringed because a gay couple wants to get married… All these people angry about immigrants, angry about Muslims, angry about “Happy Holidays,” angry about not being able to say bigoted things without being called a bigot… They all basically boil down to people who have grown accustomed to walking straight at other folks, and expecting THEM to move. So when “those people” in their path DON’T move… When those people start wondering, “Why am I always moving out of this guy’s way?” When those people start asking themselves, “What if I didn’t move? What if I just kept walking too?” When those people start believing that they have every bit as much right to that aisle as anyone else… It can seem like THEIR rights are being taken away.

You will have to read the blog post to understand the “moving out of this guy’s way” part of the above quote...and I urge you to follow THIS LINK and read the post.

I don’t usually post my more controversial thoughts and links on FB...although I know that is the quickest way to get something in front of a lot eyeballs. I have friends on FB that are far right….some so far right that I actually changed the settings so I don’t see their stuff show up on my FB feed. It just got too depressing and antagonizing. And while I have a lot of left leaning FB friends, posting things on my wall is just too “in your face” for me. Posting here on this blog seems to be the best middle ground.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Comments on Presidential Decency.....’s been a week or so since my last post….and I revisited the article Max penned about Trump and decency (or his lack there of) to read some of the comments. They run the gamut from agreement, to indignation, to accusations that criticizing Trump is an offhanded way to  support Hillary. Some accused Max of being a liberal pastor who is for social justice (the disgrace….Jesus would never stand for that social justice nonsense) and that Max probably has a tolerance for homosexuality. (We all know decent Christians do not tolerate homosexuality)

Some commenters complained that, in the interest of fairness, he should have also criticized the Democratic candidates. And, of course many comments brought the issue back around to Obama…..the guy everybody loves to hate. Another commenter warned about spite voting...a vote to get back at who was elected….or was the last election.

Some accused Max of “giving up the truth of the Gospel years ago” so he could sell more books (Really? Have you read a Max Lucado book, maam?)

Some commenters plugged their candidate of choice….Trump, Rubio….Carson (who is no longer a candidate) Kasich….there were some Hillary supporters and a few comments in favor of Bernie Sanders.

The comment that captured my attention

I think it’s pretty clear there is only one decent person who is a contender in this race. It’s the wild-haired Jew who talks about caring for the least of these.

Bernie...the secular Jew.

And things have gotten even crazier in this presidential race….especially within the Republican party. What a spectacle.

Has politics always been this crazy?