Old, Rugged Cross

My church is a country song

Today there are people sleeping in the pews,

while detoxing from Meth,

souls on probation from prison,

people hiding out from a fight breaking outside.

It’s all so beautiful

This is a place where people can find healing

They don’t call it the old, rugged cross for nothing

We come to Him raw and Jesus, the master carpenter,

sands us down.

 

 

Gone Rogue

I’ve seen it happen over and over again. A person becomes disenchanted with Christianity while still holding on with Christ. Not uncommon. Actually understandable. The breakdown occurs when we separate from the church body and then have to create our own way of maintaining our spirituality apart from it. Many times this leads to new pseudo-churches, even new denominations. It leads to division and this is unfortunate.

We must hold together to remain stronger. We must work out our differences. We cannot do this thing alone. Yes, by no means approach the Word blindly. Yes, admit and explore where you come into conflict with the norm. These are healthy and good things to do. But stay connected. A person can wander into the desert and live, even gain a following, but can they thrive? Do they have the resources to empower others to do so as well?

Good questions to ponder. We must always strive for connection, seeking paths that connect us to each other and to God. When we are planted, we grow. Even if the community is alternative, that is fine and good. Just find community and thrive.

Testify!

She stood up in front of the congregation and said,

“I shouldn’t even be here today

I’ve had seizures that limit my ability to walk

but here I am standing in front of you.

It’s all thanks to God.”

Then she sang “Jesus Take the Wheel.”

Next it was a lady in a wheelchair,

who testified to the necessity of Jesus,

“turn to him before it’s too late.”

Pretty soon it was everyone,

black and white, male and female, young and old

All preaching their own sermonette

Because the Spirit was flowing

and the gateway to the pulpit was open

My friends, do not quench the Spirit

Allow Him to flow freely through you,

to share both your gifts and your story,

so all might be empowered to do the same.

The altar call is sounded,

who will stand?

Offensive

I do not understand the love affair amongst some Christians of making the cross offensive. “This will (probably) offend you,” they say. “This may upset the PC people,” they add.

What kind of witness is this? Yes, Paul calls the cross “foolishness” (1 Corinthians 1:18) to some, and many times it is. There are many who don’t get it, don’t like it, or more likely have had bad experiences with it.

But our goal should never to be to offend, but simply to present the Gospel as it is. The naked Gospel is powerful enough without attaching a bulldozer to is.

Let us witness and truth and in love. May it be Christ and the Holy Spirit that speaks through us, rather than our own selfish ambition.

Stained Glass

People are funny and people in the church are no exception.

We all have our unconscious lists of sinners and saints, people that seemingly can do no wrong and people that seemingly can do no right.

But in the end we’re all just people and this has been true ever since the first person showed up on Earth.

From Adam to David to Paul to Aaron, we’re all broken pieces of glass put together by God into this collective masterwork known as the fellowship of believers.

Let us lay our perceptions down and embrace the collective soul, for we are all saints and sinners whose sole redemption is God.

 

The Will of God

What is the will of God?

When do we stop and They begin?

What agency do we have

in view of Their omniscience?

Surely we are called to account

for our actions

and nothing goes unseen.

Let me explore Your mystery, LORD,

and obey Your will,

for regardless of where I start and You begin,

You are the Alpha and the Omega,

the true beginning and end.

All things return to You

in reverence and awe,

in respect of all that You Are.

 

On Homosexuality

In the beginning, God created male and female

in Their image

In the Gospels, we are told by Jesus

that in heaven we will neither marry nor be given in marriage,

so the matter of who you love is immaterial in the grand scope of eternity.

We see in Sodom quite the antithesis of any loving and platonic,

but rather the byproduct of rape culture

and child molestation prevalent in those times, as it is in ours.

In fact, this practice of older men defiling young boys

carries over to Paul’s day,

where Paul again expressly forbids it.

And then their is Levitical law.

These laws were sanitary by nature,

encouraging people to avoid pork and bottom feeders, both of which carry deadly

parasites,

and to keep their homes clean

In this vein, it is understandable to withhold from sexual relations,

as anything to do with sex or sexuality involves the transmission of fluids,

which may or may not carry blood-born pathogens and sexually transmitted diseases,

and the passages give male homosexual relations extra pause

as anal penetration carries with it addition chance of transmission,

but we are now allowed to eat pork

and we are encouraged to delight in our sexuality,

even though Western culture still retains and rather convoluted relationship with it.

As Jesus said in the Scriptures, never will an iota of the Gospel will be thrown out

or discarded,

but our perception of it is allowed to change.

If not for Jesus’ middle road, we would not have the substitutionary atonement

fulfilling and bypassing the former call for endless sacrifice.

In the same way, we see that God is bigger and wiser than any one of us.

Their perspective is eternal.

You of course are called upon to make your own decisions on the matter,

for we must be sure of our convictions lest we fall into sin, as Paul so warns us.

So, examine the Scriptures and make up your own mind.

Be loved. Be blessed. Thank you for your time.