The ease of blogging, Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms tempt people to express thoughts and opinions instantly, always with the hope that something we tap out on our keyboards will go viral. We all dream of influencing people. And, for Christians, that dream can have a certain degree of nobility to it.
Alas, even as Christians, we see pride well up as we gain followers. If our followers like our posts, that pride convinces Continue reading
My time in God’s Word yesterday fascinated me, particularly in light of the Social Justice Movement that evangelicals have adopted from secular progressives. Let me show you the passage I read and follow it with a couple thoughts for you to ponder.
After this I heard what seemed to be the loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, crying out,
Salvation and glory and power belong to our God,
2 for his judgments are true and just;
for he has judged the great prostitute
who corrupted the earth with her immorality,
and has avenged on her the blood of his servants.”
3 Once more they cried out,
The smoke from her goes up forever and ever.” ~~Revelation 19:1-3 (ESV)
In the previous chapter, the apostle John had just described really gruesome judgments that God executed on those who rejected Him. To our 21st Century minds, these judgments seem more like an occasion for mourning than for praising God, and yet the text unmistakably says that the multitude John saw glorified Him precisely because of His judgments.
Notice, first of all, that the attention is completely on the Lord. I can’t help seeing a vivid contrast between this heavenly celebration of God’s justice and the man-centered understanding of justice we see in the Social Justice Movement. God’s justice reflects His glory, causing His people to praise and worship Him.
“Visions of rapture now burst on my sight,” wrote Fanny Crosby in arguably her most famous and most beloved hymn. Once you realize that Fanny Crosby lost her sight in early childhood, you can’t help but feel startled by this poignant lyric.
Fanny saw what so many of us routinely overlook. She fixed her gaze steadfastly on the Savior and His return. I fear that, even as we sing her words believing that we cherish them, we rarely see their power. We close our eyes to the astonishingly beautiful promise that He will come again and gather us to Himself! We busily focus on temporal matters, willfully blind to the eternal glories that await us in His kingdom.
Listen again to this familiar hymn. Let a simple blind woman open your eyes to the wonders of our Savior and the blessed assurance of His eternal kingdom.
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Doesn’t the sheer act of singing with your brothers and sisters in Christ each Sunday morning feel terrific? It satisfies us both physically and emotionally! And, although singing is only one aspect of worship, it is perhaps the most tangible and personal expression of our relationship with the Lord.
Yet sometimes the physical and emotional pleasure that singing brings can actually distract us from the Recipient of our worship. We almost forget that we worship the glorious King of creation Who lovingly cares for His frail and feeble children.
As worship through song allows our hearts to soar in praise, let’s remember to focus on the One Who deserves our worship. Let us tell of His might as we recite the bountiful care of our Maker, Defender, Redeemer and Friend.
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Enjoying fall leaves in Boston Common
According to family lore, my mom’s father was one quarter Cherokee. I’m reticent to embrace this claim after Senator Elizabeth Warren so famously had her Cherokee heritage debunked. During the height of that controversy, I learned the a vast majority of Caucasian Americans believe that they have Cherokee blood somewhere in their lineage. Therefore (as much as I’d like to think a little Cherokee blood runs through my veins), I dare not make that boast without further confirmation.
Even without Cherokee heritage, however, my gender and my disability provide sufficient grounds for Continue reading
Few people seriously believe that either misogyny or racism have any place in the Christian church. While God established different roles for men and women (as I’ve discussed numerous times on this blog), He never gives us reason to consider one gender to be superior to the other. Similarly, He doesn’t advocate that His people make racial or ethnic distinctions among ourselves.
23 Now before faith came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. 24 So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. 25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, 26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise. ~~Galatians 3:23-29 (ESV)
In Christ, Christians of both genders and all ethnic backgrounds find unity. And our unity in Him demands Continue reading
Do you ever find yourself doing exactly what you always promised yourself you’d never do? The classic example, of course, is suddenly hearing your mother’s words (the exact words you vowed you’d never utter) come flying out of your mouth. Yeah, it horrifies you when it happens, and you mentality kick yourself for days afterwards. What got into you? How humiliating!
I’d decided in my mid-thirties, that I’d age gracefully. I cut my hair to an age-appropriate length soon after turning 40, and traded in my lacy ruffled blouses for more tailored clothing. I even combated my feelings of jealousy when younger women started doing the types of ministry that had once belonged to me, realizing that I’d had my turn.
For quite a while, I was actually doing pretty well at transitioning from middle age to being a <gulp> senior citizen. Actually, I was quite delighted to Continue reading