Saturday, August 25, 2012

Good Stuff Saturday 8-25








Articles that I want to share with you

Shawn Smucker - When white tube socks are treasured and I find something in poverty I didn't expect  - The air pressed in around me, cold and foreign, and I was scared when my dad and my uncle opened the back of the van to reveal the treasure we carried: boxes and boxes of gleaming white tube socks wrapped in plastic.
“Hey, buddy,” my dad called, never scared, never one to hesitate. “You need some socks?”
The man pushed his cart over towards us, squinting his eyes. He grunted as if to say of course, who wouldn’t want new socks?

DRGT: Just Wondering - Our bending low Jesus - Maybe it's the contrast of that image - 
the one I can hardly grasp,
the one that speaks of grandeur,
and Beyond-my-ken,
and Ground-of-Being hugeness -
the contrast of all that
with the picture we have of Jesus
in the pages of the gospel.

Katie Hawkins: Missionary to Albania - Laundry Lessons - I’ve learned that you should turn clothes inside out so they don’t fade or turn into multiple awkward shades of the same color.


This Time Around - Community in Action - Okay, we didn’t enjoy the early morning wake-up call. Who wants to hear a smoke alarm going off, someone yelling “Fire!” and your husband stumbling around your camping trailer as he struggles to get on a pair of pants and grab the fire extinguisher at 5:15 in the morning?
But what we saw as people sprung into action to take care of a trailer fire this past Wednesday was amazing:


NoSuperheros.com - The Gospel that is Not - Even if we think we understand the gospel, when we assume that our congregations, small groups, and friends understand grace and therefore skip right past it and go straight to application, we are still motivating them by works and not the gospel.
I have seen countless friends grow up in the church youth group, hearing so many rules and commands without hearing the explicit motivation and reason behind the commands. Christianity becomes “being a good person who follows the rules”.

The Rantings of a Dad - Comparing Kids and Writer's Block  - I've noticed since I started this blog that other people feel more comfortable writing/talking/posting about their kids. Especially my friends who are dads and uncles. Now, I freely admit that this probably doesn't have something to do with my blog. 

Its like when I played football and my jersey number was "65." I started noticing that number everywhere. Why? Because God wanted me to know that He wanted me to play football and I was destined to be in the NFL someday? 
Thoughts on God, Life, and Ministry - A Postcard from the Middle of Christianity  - The primary problem I see with modern Christianity is that there is a seamless divide between our faith and our politics.  While I agree that your faith should impact how you vote 100%, the problem is that in the political realm, we are conservatives and liberals; Republicans and Democrats.  And that carries over into the church.

Beta Christian - The Firestarter  - Once outside the building, while waiting for the FDNY, I wondered why our apartment was so full of smoke. Curiosity got the best of me so I handed baby to wife, covered my mouth with a cloth and went inside to investigate. It was difficult to see with all the smoke, but as I walked inside of the kitchen, I saw it. Stove was on and all the water inside the pot was dried and the plastic bottles had melted.
I proceeded to turn off the stove, threw pot outside the window and when I turned around, a huge FDNY fireman was standing there holding an axe in his hand. I looked at him, he looked at me, I said, “my bad, it was my fault1”. He looks around, sees no threat of any fire and proceeds to exit the apartment. I follow him.

A Deeper Story - On why I don't know if I'm a pacifist  - I don’t like guns. The physical or virtual kind. And in an ideal world, I’m a pacifist too. A lion-sleeps-with-the-lamb kind of girl. But in this world, the lion eats the lamb. So when that happens, do we just sit back? Or do we defend the lamb?
These are the hard questions. Some things are a spiritual battle, yes, and some things are mental. But then there are those that are very, very physical.

Sandy Ridge Wesleyan Church - Social Media and the Changing Church  - I once heard it said that while the Gospel message itself never changes, the ways to communicate the Gospel are forever changing and evolving. I have found this to be quite true in many ways over the years. One of the ways we have seen change in the realm of how we communicate is with the explosion of social media over the past 5 years. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, and so forth have exploded in popularity. Sadly, many churches have been slow to adapt to this trend. The question I have is – why?


Red Letter Believers - As long as you're happy and other lies  - Happiness, although thrown into the Bill of Rights by Thomas Jefferson, is not really a Christian imperative. We act like it is – using it as an excuse to leave a spouse, to buy unnecessary possessions,or to gorge ourselves at the buffet line of life.

I am a "happy" person – and I consider my outlook to be positive. It's my faith that sets the table for happiness. But to pursue happiness creates all kinds of ugly situations. Read Malcom Muggeridge’s thoughts on this:


Top of the Page - A "What am I doing wrong?" sort of day  - I was grieving in my own heart from the events of the day, and I thought it was for my son. I saw him wrestling with shame today. I knew I needed to pray against the enemy's lies in his life...

But when I knelt there, God shook His head at me and smiled. "Oh no," He said, "That grief you feel is your own. For your mistakes. For the parenting failures that are haunting you. The enemy has his claws in you too.

A few tears squeezed through my lashes.

It was true. The Lord saw what was really going on inside when I couldn't. In His presence, it all was exposed. I'm the one who needs the freedom, I realized. Romans 8:1, the verse "There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus," began repeating in my head. No condemnation. No condemnation. 

The Church of No People - Why you should always be underpaid  - Being overpaid is wrong, isn’t it?  Wouldn’t that mean you aren’t doing your best, or you’re not giving your employer what they deserve?
If you are not underpaid, then you aren’t working hard enough.  Your effort you give should always outstrip the value you take.
If you aren’t do that, what reason does the boss have to give you a raise?

Jon Acuff Blog - Don't believe the social media experts  - The funny thing is they’re all wrong.
Not because I’m using them the “right way,” but because there is no right way. There’s only my way and your way and your friend’s way and your brother’s way and everyone else’s way.

Our Magnolia Lane - I am who I am - Maybe this is why I am so attracted to art and music. It is probably just a release for me when I have too much going on inside. When my brain is working overtime and my heart is just too full. If we just met and you told me about the heaviness of your heart, I would cry with you. And then i would go home and cry again. Its just who I am. 

Compassion - Going to the "mall" aka the garbage dump - The beginning was not easy.
According to pastor Alberto, when the community learned about the proposal of the development center, many families opposed the idea, thinking it was another strategy to get votes from them – votes in exchange for “little favors” that would be removed after the elections.


Courtesy of Compassion International: http://blog.compassion.com/going-to-the-mall-aka-the-garbage-dump/#ixzz24U4Ct3yt

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