Saturday, December 28, 2013
Friday, December 27, 2013
Great and Small
I think Edmondson is right here, but as I survey thing, what we need is people who need to learn how to be small in greatness, not remeasure greatness. Let em break this down.
What was special about this lady?It wasn’t her position. It wasn’t her bank account. It wasn’t her connections. (She probably had more power by popularity, but she wasn’t the type to ever use it.) It wasn’t even her abilities. There were others who might have been more qualified, at least on paper, than she was at her work.
As I reflect on her, I think she was special because of what was in her heart. She treated everyone the same; with love and grace. She had a servant’s heart. It wasn’t what she did. It was who she was. She loved people and so she wanted to give them the best of herself.
When I think of this verse I think of her…and many like her. She was great among mankind, because of her servant’s heart.
What defines your greatness?Are you great, because of the standards set by society, or are you great because of the love within your heart?
In God’s Kingdom, greatness is never greater than when defined by a servant’s heart.
Edmondson is describing a woman from his youth, no doubt lovely. She occupied a lower space in the organization of things. And that is wonderful. But what we need are leaders that "treat everyone the same; with love and grace," and "have a servant’s heart." The problem is not at the bottom of the org chart - it's at the top.
Where are our examples of leaders that have the same attitude that is lauded in this women? That is what the world needs right now. THAT IS WHAT THE CHURCH NEEDS RIGHT NOW!
Thursday, December 26, 2013
Set Free By, Not From, Judgement
Robert Kolb and Charles Arand wrote an incredibly engaging book called The Genius of Luther's Theology: A Wittenburg Way of Thinking for the Contemporary Church. I highly, highly recommend it.If I am brutally honest, I do not find that astonishing - it is a pretty classic statement of Reformed theology. But what I do find vitally important is that our freedom comes NOT FROM A LACK OF JUDGEMENT - but from God's unique judgement. This means, in part, that all those little judgements that we are freed from are not inherently bad - there is a place for judgement. Our goal is not to cease judging, but to learn to judge on the same basis as God. We remain subject to judgement.
Kolb and Arand write:
Living on the basis of Christ's righteousness involves the recognition that God's judgement contradicts the judgement that others make about us, as well as the judgement we render on ourselves. Daily life–the home, workplace, community, society–provides the context for an unending series of performance evaluations in which our capabilities and competencies are under constant critique. In these settings and relationships, we are forced to consider how others see us and judge us.
We also have to live with the image that we have of ourselves as we enter the world around us with respect to education, promotions, finances, popularity, and social mobility. Such daily audits of our own self-evaluation and the daily audit of how others evaluate us will continue until death. Nevertheless, the balance sheet does not have the first and last say about my existence.
The passive righteousness of faith ultimately frees us from being determined now and finally by such an audit. It frees me from pronouncing final judgement on myself. The passive righteousness of faith also frees me from what others say about me, for what they say is not the final judgement, but is always provisional.
For faith believes God's gracious judgement despite all empirical evidence to the contrary. In other words, we cling to the promise regardless of how many times instant replays of our weaknesses and failures flash before my eyes.
Too many today thinks Christ's death and resurrection did away with judgement - nothing could be further from the truth. What we really learn here is that judgement is no longer based on the Law, but on God's divine wisdom, only some of which is reflected in the law. Thus our goal becomes to more and more take onthe mind of Christ so that our judgement will align with His.
Too bad we shortcut this so easily.
Wednesday, December 25, 2013
Related Tags: Illuminated Scripture
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
Christmas Eve With The Superheroes
Merry Christmas From A Few Of My Friends
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Monday, December 23, 2013
Is It Our Message?
We are all flawed messengers. But we have a perfect message: It is the good news of Jesus Christ. We can tell people that God loves them, that God will forgive them, but they are separated from Him by their sin. And if they will turn from their sin and put their faith in Christ, they can be forgiven.I'm sure we'll all agree on the "flawed messenger" part, but I wonder if we really hold to the "perfect message." I wonder if we do not tweak the message here and there just a bit to make it more marketable? I wonder if we truly adhere to the actual perfection of the message or if we find it just a bit too harsh? I wonder if we do not think we are just a bit smarter than the perfect message?
I wonder is as flawed messengers we seek to be worthy of the perfection of our message? I wonder if we embrace our flawed status just a little too tightly because it "demonstrates grace?" I wonder if we understand that the end point of the perfect message is the repair of our flaws?
I think we need to wonder these things continually.
flaws message messenger perfection