What’s on your list of favorite things about babies? There’s nothing like a fresh beginning. Babies have a knack for transforming parents and families, for changing their world. The girls all melt at the sight if a baby, the guys stand back, unsure of what to do or how to maintain the macho image with such a delicate package. Here’s my ten list. Read the rest of this entry
Maybe you didn’t notice the contradiction in my recent posts. First came the quotes from Jesus about not judging others and avoiding a critical spirit. Next came the challenge to spot the fakes. The problem is, how do you identify the fakes if you don’t judge what they say and do? Read the rest of this entry
We often want to complain that life isn’t fair. We want life to be a big slice of utopia with a dash of Pollyanna but it doesn’t look too much like that up close. Maybe if we stand far enough away so there’s no details visible, things won’t seem so bad, but we know better.
Here’s a quick way to get what we want in life. It’s foolproof and easy. It doesn’t take much effort and produces amazing results. Best of all, it’s a no money down deal with absolute guarantees. Ya gotta luv it since there’s no way to lose by getting it wrong. Ready for it? Read the rest of this entry
The path of faith builds off the foundation that God actually cares about us and pays attention to what happens in our lives. Now this can be hard to grasp – why would a God who is great and self-sufficient give a rip about me? Doesn’t he have something better to do with his time and energy? Maybe if he put his energy elsewhere there wouldn’t be so many problems in the world today! Read the rest of this entry
Pat was a screamer. She’d worked as a clerk in the government office in her small town for about ten years and she was entrenched. She hated to actually do anything unless it involved others knowing how hard her job was and how lucky they were to have her in their office. In our weaker moments of honesty none of us could think of her presence as being remotely related to good luck. Yet the fact remained, she held the key to getting certain things done and not everyone enjoyed the security of tenure like Pat did. Read the rest of this entry
It was a typical Christian Private School making the same poor decisions many such schools make. The teachers were underpaid and obliged to describe their work as ministry. In a real sense it was but what the school meant was that the teachers should have “faith” and accept pay below reasonable market rates.
It’s complicated but if you won’t pay they won’t stay. Some wonderful teachers passed briefly through the school. Those who stayed had Read the rest of this entry
Sometimes we struggle with the idea of knowing God and being friends with Jesus. Some of us do better with pictures than words; you can talk all you like but we only connect when we see what you are talking about. Thomas was a bit like that. The others told him excitedly Read the rest of this entry
Like Brian in our last post we have formed our self-image on our own. People tell us things and we immediately filter them through our perceptions, rejecting what doesn’t fit. They say we are so good at doing something but we know better and continue to flog ourselves because it isn’t perfect (on our standards.) They say we are gifted, we know we are a klutz. They say we’re beautiful, but we think they’re just trying too hard to be nice. Ever noticed that our strongest self-perceptions tend to be negative? We have this need to hear positive things yet immediately reject what we hear as being untrue or too candy-coated. Why does the beauty queen struggle with anorexia? How small must she get before she realizes that she isn’t even close to being overweight? What she hears and what she thinks are worlds apart. She doesn’t hold the monopoly on that problem of perception versus reality. Apparently asking or selectively listening to others provides little help in cross-checking our perceptions of ourselves. Read the rest of this entry
This miracle of Jesus making wine lifts the lid on a Pandora’s box of human ills just waiting to escape into the world. We avoid these questions because they are hard and they don’t fit well with our convenient image of Jesus. That convenient image includes all the nice things we want in our God and leaves out all that we don’t like. Sadly, convenient is not the same as real.
Here’s a sampler of the questions we have but aren’t sure we should ask: Read the rest of this entry