Saturday, September 15, 2012
Good art anyway
Friday, September 14, 2012
No One Wants To hear This, But...
In Methodist, Presbyterian, Episcopal, Lutheran, and other mainline churches, “worship wars” have sometimes broken out as pastors introduce new language, furniture arrangements, and music, while many in the pews cling to the stately traditions they have known all their lives. I’m finding that quite a number of young people aren’t drawn to hand clapping and “praise” music and are increasingly intrigued by the beauty and sense of mystery in Gregorian chant and in a traditional Eucharist with hymns, candles, and vestments.Brief analysis. The megachurch of my generation looks as vapid and empty and hypocritical to young people today as the mainlines did to us.
That means the answer does not lie in styles and forms; the answer lies in tapping into Christ and the Holy Spirit. LLoyd contends the church will shrink for a while - I agree. I just hope what comes out hte other end figures out what matters, and what doesn't.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Can Christians find better reasons - ethical reasons, not commercial ones - to combat pseudonymity? The answer probably lies in the distinction between silly and shady pseudonymity. By itself, a pseudonym isn't necessarily a problem, a danger or a sin; it's why you took the pseudonym and what you use it for. (After all, many books of the Bible are pseudonymous.) And so, even when using a silly screen name, conscientious Web users could agree to fill out the first and last name boxes that usually accompany screen names on Web-based e-mail or social-media services. That would allow for the silliness without the shadiness.You know, it never occurred to me to use one. After all Christ said:
More importantly, I think conscientious Web users should avoid pseudonymous comments, as the temptation seems stronger to go nuclear on someone when hiding behind a screen name. Even better, of course, commenters could aim to be civil and constructive. The real problem here is human nature in a fallen world, and no pseudonym policy can fully account for that.
Matt 5:37 - Simply let your 'Yes' be 'Yes,' and your 'No,' 'No'; anything beyond this comes from the evil one. (NIV)I can think of very few reasons to want to hide ourselves. There are a few - like if you have a stalker or something similar - but generally if you are a person of godly character, why hide?
Yes, it will route the avalanche of spam to other places - Lord knows it comes to be in buckets. But is that really such a big deal? The important question is what are we hiding from?
Christ also commands us to be the light of the world - so, are you hiding from this responsibility? You can't hide from God, are you hiding from yourself? How's that help us with the whole repentance thing?
If you are going to say and do things on line that you do not want to be traced back to you - maybe you ought just not do them.
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Studies Can Reveal Just About Anything
Online evangelism is producing real disciples for Christ, according to a recent study.Please - daily devotionals and sharing make for "real disciples?" Don't want to knock these practices by any means, but they hardly constitute a measure of discipleship.
Over half of those who made a decision for Jesus over the Internet have subsequently shared their faith with others, Global Media Outreach's study reveals.
Additionally, 34 percent read their Bibles daily and nearly half pray for at least 10 minutes a day.
"These findings are remarkable because they reveal that online evangelism isn’t just an in-the-moment decision, and people continue to grow in their faith after they have indicated a decision,” Global Media Outreach founder and chairman Walt Wilson said in a statement.
Do we see Jesus instructing the 12 on such things? No, we see Jesus shaping the 12 into men of Christ - and shaping some women too. This sort of shaping happens in part becasue of devotional practices, but it happens more from being in the presence of someone more mature and the 1000 little lessons that are learned through this presence.
Character is formed not through a curriculum, but through presence and the Holy Spirit. Look, I don;t want to act like the Holy Spirit cannot work through the internet - the Holy Spirit can do whatever He wants - that's part of being God.
I am far more concerned about what internet evangelism fails to ask of us. It doe snot ask us to be better than we were, it does not ask us to live up to the words we preach because it makes us invisible and anonymous.
The body of Christ cannot afford this kind of lazy evangelism - effectiveness is not the measure to be concerned about. The measure is in how we change by trying to be effective evangelists.
Tuesday, September 11, 2012
A Day To Remember
Related Tags: Memorial
How to Apply Scripture When It Does Not Speak Directly and Personally to YouDid it ever occur to anyone that it is not about "me?" Scripture is about God. And the more we know about God, the more we will be changed simply by the knowing.
Sounds relevant to me. But i this narcissistic age....
Monday, September 10, 2012
The Fine Line
People who have pride don't usually think they have it.OK - I need to pick a nit here. Thinking "critically" about someone is not bad, nor is it necessarily about a lack of humility. Thinking "uncharitably" about someone does indicate a lack of humility. Critical thinking is analysis, uncharitable thinking is "I'm better than you." Fine line, but important distinction.
It's a weakness we'd rather not own up to, but if we're honest, it's something we have to continually address.
Try to remember the last time you had a critical thought about someone.
Teaching requires that we think critically about people. However, if you think everyone is your student - there's a humility issue.
After picking that nit, I will close with the 10 characteristics of humility offered in the piece - they're good:
- Humble people ask for help.
- Humble people give credit where credit is due.
- The humble are quick to forgive and difficult to offend.
- The humble person is patient and long-suffering.
- The humble are peace lovers.
- Humble people live to serve.
- A humble person is thankful.
- The humble person has a tender conscience.
- The humble person admits their weaknesses.
- The humble receive correction from God.