Archive by Author

Would You Choose Jesus for a Friend?

1 Aug

I wrote this for our church blog today.

Tabernacle for Today

 

I have recently been reading a series of historical fiction books about the life of Christ. People have different ideas about fiction, but my thought is that anything that we understand to be fiction but which releases our sanctified imagination about how it might have been when our Saviour was on earth is a very good thing.

In this case, the researcher, Brock Thoene, is at the top of his field, and the writer, his wife Bodie, is also at the top of hers.

Each book takes a character in the gospels and fleshes him or her out as that person might have been.

All of the characters have one thing in common.  They pursue Jesus.  Initially, most do it from what could be called a selfish motive—needing healing or a friend or something to believe in other than the diabolical pagan gods.

But eventually each character…

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15 May

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/let-joy-and-sadness-mingle-this-mothers-day?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=tgcblog#When:2017-05-13T05:02:00+00:00

I saw the above article reprinted under the title “The Dark Side of Mother’s Day” yesterday and I thought, “What?”

Let me explain . . .

Every holiday has some people who cannot join in the joyful merrymaking, either because they are of the wrong religion, or because they don’t fall into the category of person/family that is being celebrated that particular day (in the present case, families with two dads, for example, but they get to double dip on Father’s Day), or because they have suffered loss and are too sad to join in.

Compassionate people understand that and mourn with those who mourn, as the Bible says.

However, only Mother’s Day leads to a widescale guilting of mothers (like almost everything else in life conspires to do). Every year there is a wide slate of articles and Facebook posts reminding us to reach out to those who cannot celebrate while we are enjoying our day. As though we would not do that without being reminded . . . (mothers nurture–it is what we do! And please do *not* read that to say *only* mothers nurture because that is certainly untrue!).

We don’t try to make fathers feel bad for enjoying Father’s Day, do we? Or Christians for enjoying Christmas? Or Jews for enjoying Chanukah?

So why do we single out one holiday and try to put a damper on it?

I propose we go one of two ways. Either stop singling out Mother’s Day as a day to say “Enjoy yourself but not too much in light of those who are suffering” or else we start caveating *every* holiday with that phrase. What say you?

March Madness and Shame . . .

4 Apr

From my church’s blog yesterday–some thoughts on March Madness and on shame.

Tabernacle for Today

Philippians 3:19, “Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.”

As I write this blog post in advance of April, March Madness is still ongoing, down to the last two teams.  By the time you read it, you will know whether North Carolina or Gonzaga prevailed in the final!

I was recently pondering the nature of shame, particularly as I was reading Ed Welch’s “Shame Interrupted.” (I will put the usual statement here that his book does not agree with everything I—and my church—hold to theologically, but it is pretty awesome in its discussion of shame, which I was trying to understand.)  Using some thoughts in the book as a starting point, let me ask a couple of questions.

Would you say that all fifteen of the Sweet Sixteen teams who did *not win the championship should be…

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If You Read Just One Post on This Topic . . .

26 Feb

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/why-the-transgender-debate-is-about-redefining-reality?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=tgcblog#When:2017-02-25T06:10:00+00:00

The Lord He is God

2 Dec

Mine.

Tabernacle for Today

untitled

Psalm 100:  A Psalm of praise.  Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

Serve the Lord with gladness:  come before his presence with singing.

Know ye that the LORD he is God:  it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise:  be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

 

I recently wrote of a period of holy darkness that the LORD allowed into my life.  I did not understand why some heartbreaking things happened and perhaps I never will.

At the time those things happened, a couple of God’s dearest servants reassured me of God’s control of the situation and of me.  They were so very…

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Slander

22 Oct

thegospelcoalition.org/article/3-ways-to-respond-when-slandered?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=tgcblog#When:2016-10-21T05:00:00+00:00

This is probably the best post I have ever read about how to counter slander. I have personally tested the principles in it. They work, and most of all they are godly.

Holy, Holy, Holy

26 Sep

My contribution to our church’s blog this morning.

Tabernacle for Today

untitled

Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God:  I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”

Has God ever called you into a period of “holy darkness” in which you clearly knew that He was in control of a situation in which you, personally, had no answers?

He did that recently with me.  The stillness, the darkness, the lack of clarity, the absence of answers–these did not stir me up, but rather calmed me down.  Due to my Saviour’s guiding hand alone (because my heart can be very naturally stirred up by events around me), I was able to rest, knowing with all my heart that He knew the answers I wished to know and that if/when He wanted me to know, I would be told these answers.  If not, He is my answer, all life long.

The older I get, the…

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