The Church Doesn’t Need People. People Need the Church
You are the salt of the earth! You are the light of the world! These might be some of the most famous phrases of Jesus (Matthew 5:12-16), yet I am not sure we often fully engage their meaning. Ultimately, Jesus is saying, “The world needs you.”
In Michigan Groundhog Day carries a little more significance than those of you who dwell in more mundane and never changing climes. Winter gets hard around February and even though we snicker at that ridiculous rodent, a little pagan voice inside us prays to Brighid that Phil fails to see his shadow and Spring will come soon.
The bookstores are full of books on prayer. When the pastor conducts a survey for possible Bible study topics, one of them is bound to be prayer. And why not? Praying seems to be the thing to do in the Bible, Christianity and all religions. Jesus prayed.
“One mornin’ Tim was feelin’ full, His head was heavy which made him shake; He fell from the […]
Every time I read the story of Jesus coming to the Jordan to be baptized, I imagine Him standing in the crowd. You could not pick Him out. His pronoun would not be uppercase. He would look like everyone else really; bland, dirty clothing, smelling like a train car in France, a fly whizzing around in his hair.
Who am I? It is the question of the age, in an age where we can so easily address or dress up the answer! We change our bodies like we used to change our wardrobe to fit our feelings. Do not laugh or mock, people are really confused. It is not sin, but the result of being sinners. What is the difference between sex changes and eunuchs, body builders taking steroids, or divorcing your family to marry the one you now love?
Numbers seem to define us. How old are you? How many years of schooling have you done? How tall are you? How fat? How much can you lift? How many calories did you eat? How far away is your house? How many lovers have you had? How many hours does it take to get to mom’s? And of course, how much money have you made, how many true friends do you have, how many years left do you have?
Somehow A Charlie Brown Christmas still hits home. After watching it for the 5 millionth time I realized I was Charlie Brown! I used to enjoy the popular Christmas special’s take on the commercialization of Christmas. Amazingly, the same complaints of Charlie Brown’s gang ring true today. “It’s too commercial,” we still cry. In fact, this was one of the complaints of the puritans in the 17th century causing them to ban Christmas celebrations in favor of working on the holiday.
Along with long lines in the mall, peppermint mocha frappe white-claws, and increasingly hyper kids at school, tis the season for Christians griping about everything from Starbuck cups to Hallmark movie channels and of course the annual, “It’s Merry Christmas, you heathen!”
“I thought we decided we weren’t going to exchange gifts?” she mumbled to her husband after receiving a surprise gift from her brother.
Have you ever received a surprise gift from someone that made you feel inadequate or even angry?