Jesus never asked us to wallow in shame, to feel really, really bad about ourselves and carry the weight of it all on our shoulders for the rest of our lives. Jesus never asked us to give him an eye for an eye, to pay him back, because no amount of beating ourselves up or paying him back can undo the damage of our sin and no amount of hard work can merit God's forgiveness. Jesus does not ask you to die for your sin. He already did that.Read More
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English doesn’t have a word for this kind of longing feeling, this melancholic yearning, this feeling of being away from your home and not knowing if you’ll ever get back there. So we have steel guitars.Read More
What would you think, if you were Jesus in that moment? What would you be feeling? Would you be pleased with what just happened? Would you encourage others to do the same thing? No. I don’t think Jesus was pleased with what she did. I think he looks at this system that has been oppressing the poor, and he sees the poor being oppressed one more time right in front of him, and I think he’s outraged.Read More
We so badly want to be like Jesus. We love who he is and what he represents. We love how he challenges the status quo and breaks social barriers and fights for what’s right. And we want to be like that. But we’re not Jesus. And that way of being doesn’t come naturally for us. So we settle for the next best thing. Method Acting. We stay in character always. But we never actually become.Read More
You can have your true self - the self with all its insecurities and struggles and joys and quirks. And then there’s the chiseled self, the perfect self, the self we wish we were. It’s the self that’s been edited, or cropped, or arranged in the way we think will make us seem the most attractive, or the most lovable, or get us the most acceptance, from those around us.Read More
So even when we win, even when we achieve our goal and get that thing we’ve always wanted, we still don’t have what we really desire or really need….a sense of security at the core of who we are, that we are loved no matter what honor we have or what honor we don’t. Honor is a Race we lose, even if we win, because to “win” the Race for Honors is to destroy all hope of love - love of myself, love of my neighbor, love of God - love, the very thing we’re craving in the first place.Read More
If I’m supposed to love my neighbor, like you say, if that’s how to build a better neighborhood, then…who exactly is that? Who exactly is this “neighbor”? It’s a great question. Because if I’m supposed to love this nameless faceless “neighbor” with the same passion and urgency and radical care that I love myself? I want to know who that “neighbor” is. Where do I focus this radical love?Read More
No, in the face of tragedy and suffering, for most of us, this belief - that everything happens for a reason - it shows up in the form of a question, a question that has driven more people away from faith that probably any other question in the history of Christianity. “Why?”Read More
The people who did answer mostly said that the commandment they knew was: “God helps those who help themselves.” That phrase is no where in the Bible, but most Americans think it is. It’s this idea that my good destiny, my good fortune, my good reality is really up to me. Sure, God will help me too - but ultimately, I have to get the ball rolling first. And if that’s true, the opposite is also true - anything bad that happens to me is really my fault.Read More