All kinds of motivational literature are good at telling you what’s good and bad. The church is great at beating the dead horse of consequences, drenching it in lighter fluid, and lighting it with napalm. We get it. Sin bad, God is good.
You might as well describe the water that the person is drowning in.
There are always real obstacles in the way of breaking free to a breakthrough. Like spiritual blocks that cut the momentum. What might not seem like a big deal to you might be a big deal to them. Because not everyone thinks like you. This is where it gets messy, messed up, and it’s not so black-and-white. Moving forward is not a straight line, and “sanctification” is less of a light switch than it is a journey.
God understands this and wants to break down each obstacle in the way, one at a time, until you can step forward unburdened by blind spots and dead weight. None of these obstacles make you a bad person, but just misinformed. Jesus didn’t come to make you “un-bad” anyway. He came to give you True Life.
Here are four obstacles to tackle to really break through to the other end of God’s vision. These things are not your fault, but you can choose not to wallow in them.
Continue reading “Four Obstacles To Break On The Way To A Breakthrough”
I feel stuck and feel like I have no direction and calling despite my education. I want to trust that God has a plan for me, but I cannot discern a specific heart or calling for anything. I feel like I’m wasting this life he’s given me. I don’t know what to do.
Good news, my friend. Welcome to the real world.
I don’t mean to sound callous here, but don’t panic: you’re not experiencing anything different than the other billions of human beings in the world who aren’t sure what to do with their lives. That sort of Limbo-Floating at any stage in life is expected, and though that might not be comforting, you’re NOT crazy.
It took me about seven years to graduate college, and I went to three different ones for undergrad (two of them community colleges, both which were great: so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise). I changed my major roughly three times — Undeclared, Biology, English, and finally Psychology. And as I was on my way to being a doctor, I got called to seminary. By this time I was in my mid-twenties. So it took a while to “discover” myself.
The important thing, firstly, is to not feel bad about feeling bad. If you feel like you’re “wasting your life,” then don’t start wasting your life on wasting your life. Unless you’re shooting up heroin and beating up hookers with a spatula, you’re probably exactly where you should be: seeking.There will be some anxiety, but you’ll need to run through that like a giant stocking.
Continue reading “Question: I Have No Idea What I’m Doing”
May God bless you with discomfort
At easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships,
So that you may live deep within your heart.
May God bless you with anger
At injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people,
So that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace.
May God bless you with tears
To shed for those who suffer pain, rejection, hunger, and war,
So that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain to joy.
And may God bless you with enough foolishness
To believe that you can make a difference in the world,
So that you can do what others claim cannot be done,
To bring justice and kindness to all our children and the poor.
— Franciscan Benediction
Blogging friends, please keep in mind that many of us here are 15 to 20 years old. Even if you’re 25 and married, you’re still a kid. That’s how the news would describe you if you ended up there. I’ve barely just turned 30 and my mom still thinks I’m a baby. That’s the straight-up truth; let’s not deny that.
Continue reading “Caution: Bloggers Are Not Your Counselors”
Prostitutes are in no danger of finding their present life so satisfactory that they cannot turn to God: the proud, the avaricious, the self-righteous, are in that danger.
— C.S. Lewis
Church, let’s be on guard about the time we’re living in.
Because of globalization and instant communication, we’ve entered an era of intellectual laziness. You and I have become Google experts that can look up anything to confirm our own opinion. We are often emotionally motivated to confirm our preconceived notions from other anonymous bloggers of similar thought. So an atheist gets their ideas about Christianity from an atheist, and a Christian gets their ideas about atheism from other Christians. Might as well go to the butcher shop to ask about the growth rate of asparagus.
With globalized access anyone can claim to be an “expert,” set up a website with clever words and colorful language, and consult other so-called “experts” to confirm their feelings.
Even ten to fifteen years ago, the average person did not have a public voice. Now —
Continue reading “The Age of the Google Expert: I Know Nothing About Everything”
How could an idiotic universe have produced such creatures whose mere dreams are so much stronger, better, subtler than itself?
— C.S. Lewis
I love my Reformed Calvinist brothers and sisters, but I can no longer claim to be a “Reformed Calvinist.” I have removed it from my About section.
I have been attacked by only three groups of people: militant atheists, a handful of fanatics from Steven Furtick’s church, and Reformed Calvinists. So basically non-Christians, false Christians, and Super Christians. And the worst of these attacks were from — you guessed it — Reformed Calvinists.
I can take persecution from the frontlines. I’d gladly take a bullet or be tortured to death for Jesus or for my fellow friend. I can handle discouragement and perversity in the world. But what I cannot understand is when those who claim to love Jesus destroy others who love Jesus.
This is not a theology issue, but rather a love issue. The ivory tower of Neo-Calvinism has reached so high, I’m not sure what the point is anymore. Calvinist bloggers only stimulate other Calvinist bloggers. Neo-Calvinism has become the ghetto of the ghetto of the Christian subculture.
Continue reading “Why I’m No Longer Self-Identifying As A “Reformed Calvinist””
Fear-based repentance makes us hate ourselves. Joy-based repentance makes us hate the sin.
— Timothy Keller