"I am convinced romantic love is awesome, almost unearthly, because of its power to give significant meaning and purpose to one’s life and to be a healing and bonding force for good. It is not to be discounted. But as we will see, it is not the best of our love. And its grand finale fireworks diminish over time."
The Slow Walk Back to Church: Why?
"Today, many Evangelical Protestants have already decided to attend church services online, even if the pandemic ends, so says a study published by Infinity Concepts (IC) as reported by Christians Newswire. The President of IC said, “a surprisingly large number of evangelicals do not necessarily see superior advantages to attending in-person services…We found that 45% of those who experienced online church services now believe that worship online is equal or superior to the in-person experience” in some areas explored. "
Theologies that Wound: “Count it All Joy”
"If “count it all joy” was meant to be applied to everyone for every occasion, then why was Jesus severely stressed and in agony in the Garden and ask for a way out? And why was Paul afraid (2 Cor 7:5)? Does anyone seriously think a person should have “any” joy, let alone “all” joy, in response to being sexually abused? We do not respond with joy in most evil circumstances. But there is an exception to one kind of evil — more on that in a moment."
Emotions: Can you Trust Them?
"Perhaps you have asked yourself questions such as, “Is God an emotional being?” And, “Are feelings a part of being created in the likeness and image of God?” “Which emotions should one trust and distrust?” So, let’s address some of the answers to these questions."
Christianity: A Pearl Worth Any Price?
"C. S. Lewis boldly said, “If you want a religion to make you feel really comfortable, I certainly don’t recommend Christianity.” Why does Lewis write such a statement in full view of those in the world? Doesn’t that turn some people off to the gospel, which might save their lives? Is He guilty of critical advertisement or dimming the light of Christianity?"
Repentance for Christians
"The repentance I am writing about is not what you think. Of course, we all need to examine ourselves and to determine if our sin nature has snuck in the back door and surprisingly exposed itself or, if in full awareness, we opened the front door to let him in to where we live. As important as that is, the repentance I am referring to is about the other side of the coin. "
Joy Is Ours Now, More Is Coming!
What if you knew in advance that you could make a financial investment in a good and ethical company and be absolutely guaranteed a 1000% return in a short time? Would you hesitate to invest? What if you knew for certain which person would be the best marital partner for you, assured of God’s approval, with a guarantee the marriage would never be laden with pain or end in divorce? Would you hesitate to marry the person? If only we could have such knowledge and guarantees ahead of time.
The Way of Love: The Love of Self
We are taught to love our neighbors as we love ourselves, but then we are also told to deny self, die to self, not to be selfish, and love God with everything in us. When is it right to deny ourselves and love ourselves and can we do both at the same time? Sounds at least a little confusing doesn’t it? Some are free to express their love for people, but fail to consider they are also a person.
Expressing Lament and Faith
So many messages I hear today speak about putting off fear, doubt, insecurity, and grief and putting on trust, joy, peace, faith and contentment. Most Christians are disappointed, and some surprised with the outcome of the presidential election. In the face of these and other troubling thoughts and emotions, we are repeatedly reminded, “God is in control”, and if we really believe it, we should feel just fine. And the implication is, If we don’t feel at peace, then we must be doing something wrong.
“God Will Not Give Me More Than I Can Bear”
In the Greek, the word for trial and temptation is the same. This has resulted in the following verse to be read and interpreted differently by many Christians. The consequence can be very troubling when our expectations of God’s actions don’t match our experiences. “No temptation [some versions say trial] has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted [trial] beyond what you are able, but with the temptation [trial] will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it” (1 Cor 10:13).
“Love Your Enemies”
Jesus’ command to “love your enemies” stirs us to reason that if we are to love the hardest and seemingly the most undeserving of people, then we are to love everyone. As I, you might be left with the thought that loving our enemies is a monumental task and, for some, perhaps impossible. The feeling of being overwhelmed by such a task can be somewhat lessened in knowing to what kind of love is Jesus referring.
Socialism & the Early Church
We find in Acts 2:44-45 these amazing words about the early church, “All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.” Are not these actions at the heart of socialism, even communism? If Scripture supports this approach to possessions, why shouldn't we be willing to give this system its right place in America? Shouldn’t leaders around the world embrace socialism?
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