Showing posts from September, 2016

Love the Process

Have you ever wondered why God does some of the things that He does? Do you ever ask yourself why things are the way that they are? I was asked recently about God's method of sanctification. He loves us, saves us, and uses us--but still allows us to sin. Why? What is the point of sinning Christians?
Because here we are as redeemed sons and daughters of God. We enjoy intimate fellowship with Father through Jesus Christ--having His Spirit within us-- and our "sanctification process" looks more like the stock market than the "walking in newness of life" that is offered those in Christ. We are up one moment and down the next. We boom today, but a crash is always around the corner. There are good moments to be sure, maybe even a gradual progress, but the cyclical pattern of: sin, confess, repent--show no signs of stopping. Why is this frustrating and painful cycle the chosen path of the Christian saint?
Wouldn't it be better if God would just perfect us immediatel…

Confessions of a Perfectionist

I don't think I am a perfectionist. Per say. Maybe I am just "overly ambitious" or better yet "filled with high expectations." Whether it is my daily routine, my performance in extracurriculars, or my thoughts on my future--I expect and anticipate an idealistic picture of what will happen.

Frequently in college I would amuse my roommate by verbalizing to him my to-do list for the day. I would plan to hit the books, get started on a paper that is still three weeks out, be proactive in my required reading. Then I would plan to go to the gym in the afternoon and enjoy some leisurely time later in the day. That for me was the perfect day. It was productive and forward thinking, yet there was time left over for rest.

Well surprise, surprise: more often than not my ideal day would fail to come to fruition. When it came down to it, I lacked the fortitude and the personal discipline to see my dreams into reality. Hours that could have been spent in rich, unadulterated st…

Guest Post: "Something More"

Have you ever wondered if there is something more to life?I know I have.The daily grind is exhausting and the weekend rest often turns out to be a let-down.I find myself joking with young adults around me that adult life is so much more lame than we thought it would be when we would play house or play doctor.
But, when we answer this question, we usually use our relationship to Jesus.Through Jesus, there is something more.Without a doubt, this is true.Still, life is frequently a bore and feels more like a chore than a joy.Is there something more than our relationship to Jesus?
Perhaps this question looks like it doubts the sufficiency of God.Perhaps it looks like an over-pessimistic kid missing all the silver-linings in the clouds of life.But perhaps it looks biblical.
Is there something more to first century Christians than a personal relationship with Jesus and a dull adult life?Yes, there is!It is called theChurch.
Now, we need to take a moment to clarify what this Church is not.This C…

Book in Review: "Brand Luther"

Nearly all books on the life of Martin Luther or the Protestant Reformation tend to focus on the theological implications of the revolution, and rightfully so. “Sola Scriptura” and “Sola Fide” sent quantum shockwaves through Europe in the 1500s that left the landscape changed forever.

Few historians and biographers, however, take a detailed look at how the reformation actually happened. In “Brand Luther” Andrew Pettegree looks to answer this as he uncovers the nuts and bolts of the reformation. How did a small Podunk town with relatively no printing industry become the central hub for printing in the world, crippling the Roman church in the process? How did a conflicted monk who had never published anything before the age of thirty spark and fan the flames of the reformation with his writings? Why did a pious catholic and collector of relics go to such great lengths to protect a defamed heretic? Of these questions and much more Pettegree answers in this book.

And what is uncovered is …

In the Arena

Theodore Roosevelt is by many respects seen as the quintessential man. He had an incredibly high energy and drive complete with a bright mind for science, politics, and history. The guy could flat out read too--often voraciously reading a book every day before breakfast. Roosevelt embodied his philosophy of “living in the arena” through his incredible military, political, and scientific careers.
I ran across this quote from Theodore Roosevelt a few weeks ago. Enjoy:
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best k…

Is Jesus Worth It?

We are so spoiled here in the west. We bemoan our struggles and hardships. We complain about waking up on Sundays to go to church or taking time out of our busy weeks to go to Wednesday night Bible Study. We rail about the restriction of religious freedom coming down the pike. But we do not know what it is like to have our family members tortured for believing in Jesus. We do not know what it is like to live every day with a fear in the back of our minds that today we might be “found out” by the authorities. It might be uncomfortable for us to talk about Jesus to a coworker or a friend, but our very lives and families are never on the line.
We are spoiled.
This week our young adult group when to see the film “The Insanity of God.” It is in a documentary format where missionaries Nik and Ruth Ripken tell their story, as well as the stories of persecuted Christians around the world. Nik had the unique opportunity to interview underground believers in some of the most oppressive countries…