What do you do when you are living in the light, breathing the fresh air, surrounded by people, and still walking through a season of spiritual darkness?
This beatitude demonstrates further the culture of Jesus’ kingdom that has the power to transform rabid wolves into gentle lambs. These lambs are not passive or weak in any way but operate in a different strength and principle then that of the world.
The more you grow the more you give. The “Blessed are the merciful” beatitude marks a milestone of growth and maturity in the follower of Christ. This beatitude is unique from all others in that the others make us receivers of mercy this one however makes us the givers of mercy.
Like most negative outcomes, spiritual indifference does not happen overnight any more than a fit person suddenly puts on 50 pounds. Whether consciously or unconsciously, mindsets and choices were adopted, small pivots in one direction or another occurred over time.
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Eric Hoffer, author of “The True Believer,” once said that “The opposite of the religious fanatic is not the fanatical atheist but the gentle cynic who cares not whether there is a god or not.”
What is worse than not believing in God?
If you wanted the perfect picture to describe a state of hopelessness a stump would be your ticket. Encyclopedias could clearly illustrate their definition of hopelessness with a snapshot of an old gnarly stub.
A stump signals that the days of fruitfulness and life are over, that children could no longer play on its long-lost branches, and that its usefulness is now reduced to just something that is in the way.
We all struggle with issues of the head and heart. The problem is that faith is a thing of the heart.
Theologian J. Gerald Janzen talked about three ways that we can understand something. The hand, the head, and the heart.
This reminds me of the confrontation God had with Job the day Job got a wake-up call and what came of it.
Job 42:3 (NRSV)
“Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.”
Deception is an ugly reality in a broken world. It seems that the minute God reveals a truth, there is a lie to challenge it. That lie never confronts us with a bold face, obvious and simple but it comes as a wolf in sheep’s clothing, an angel of light ready to give us a subtle lie covered over in a thin truth.
What does Christianity looks like when you have the wrong idea of God?
Dr. Joseph Parker once said:
“If we do not get back to visions, peeps into heaven, consciousness of the higher glory and the larger life, we shall lose our religion; our altar will become a bare stone, unblessed by visitant from Heaven.” Here is the world’s need today—men (and women) who have seen their Lord.
Changing our thinking is the key to changing our behavior but it doesn’t stop there. In fact, what good is changing our thinking if we don’t change the way we use our minds?
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Is your mind a sanctuary where the peace of God reigns, or is it an amusement park where chaos and darkness rule?
Your brain is only 4 to 5 inches long and weighs about 3 pounds, yet it is its own world. The greatest battles are fought there. The greatest fears, the greatest doubts, the greatest discouragements and failures occur in that small universe that lies between your ears.
The obsession with family trees and generational roots in modern culture is a Testament to the reality that people care about where they came from.
Yet how many of us look back with despair at our roots only to see that the family blood even though thicker, was sometimes troubled and dysfunctional? What if my roots go back to “Vlad the Impaler?”
We no longer live in the modern era but the postmodern (post-truth) era. What does postmodernism mean to us today and why should we care?
Truth, Modern, Postmodernism, Intuition, logic, Postmodern, Reasoning, Witness, history, periods, epoch, culture, paradigm, skepticism, subjective, deconstruction, era, civilization
What does it feel like when a crisis strikes?
First, when a crisis comes it often comes quickly, like dark storm clouds descending on a plain. It darkens your mind and presses down on your emotions until your limbs feel like lead weights. Your heart tries to pound out of your chest, your throat dries, your stomach churns, and you are reminded (once again) that you can use more fiber in your diet.
We live in a season of rage and controversy. Every time you turn around, someone is outraged about something. From Twitter comments that spark a firestorm to Facebook rants written in all capital letters, rage seems to be in our nature. While some controversies are worth fighting for, others are not. This is where the Bible comes in . . .
We are drowning in an ocean of narratives that confuse, anger and cause fear. The world is filled with so many conflicting stories that we can be left overwhelmed and depressed. Even if a story is true, (which many are) we can fixate on it to the point of distraction. Which world story should we believe- focus on?