Tube Float Discipleship & No Safe Spaces

How can churches get involved in their communities and not come across as horrible and judgmental people? Do you know the ancient spiritual roots of the Safe Spaces we hear so much about today? And did you know these two things are connected? All that and more on today’s show!
Episode 9

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Tube Float Discipleship & No Safe Spaces

Walk Against Drugs

Shirt

This morning I got to do two things at once. I did the long walk I like to do on Saturday mornings and took part in a walk against drugs & alcohol in our community.  This event was in memory of Cynthia Williams who died on March 9th this year.

Like just about everywhere in this country drugs and especially alcohol (it’s cheap) are a huge problem here on the River. I was happy to help raise our voices today. So I left home and walked to Walmart (just shy of 5 miles), then once we got organized we walked (strolled I would say) about a a mile to the Casino. After a while there I took off to walk back home.

A total of just over 11 miles. Not bad!

I was happy to see my friend and attender of CCR, Lisa Parten there. 

Lisa&I

Here’s a couple of more pics of the event.

crowd

Banner group

 

 

Walk Against Drugs

Remembering MLK At Work

I’m remembering Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. today just like I always do, by doing ministry. That’s what I’ve been called to do so today I’ll just keep trying to bring more light into a very dark world. Given how he lived his life I’m pretty sure Dr. King would much rather we do that than take another day to goof off and entertain ourselves.

Martin-Luther-King-Quotes-Faith

I’m actually old enough to remember Dr. King. Of course I never saw him in person or spoke to him, but I did see him on the TV. Even through that medium you could feel the impact of his personality and faith. I remembering hearing part of his “I Have a Dream Speech” and even at that age being moved.

He wasn’t perfect. Far from it in fact as we now know. But no one’s perfect and his lack of perfection doesn’t in anyway diminish what he tried to do. 

Sadly today we’ve wandered far from what he spoke of. Instead of ignoring color and focusing on the “content of our character” we are move focused on race, color and creed than ever before. Most of those who tried to take up Dr. King’s mantle of leadership have either failed to understand him or just aren’t listening. So we focus on race and then wonder why racial tension is rising?

The answer is obvious and I believe Dr. King would have called us out on it if he were still here. You become what you focus on. By focusing on our differences we only divide ourselves from ourselves. This Greek Tragedy that’s being played out today in America doesn’t have to happen. If we’d only listen to the prophetic voice of Dr. King we could still find that promised land he spoke of at the end of his life.

Martin-Luther-King-Quotes-Faith

If only…  

Rest in Peace Dr. King. God willing we’ll still find our way to the Land you now inhabit. Amen. 

 

Remembering MLK At Work

Assisted Suicide?

I just read a very moving and well written article over at HotAir that I found touching and puzzling at the same time. 

In the course of this article he talks about his father suicide and how it changed his mother for the rest of her life after she found his body. He believes he’s going to end up like his mom with Alzheimer’s disease and has vowed he won’t die like she did.

Having seen my own mother go that route a few years ago I completely understand his not wanting to die that way. I sure don’t. Yet as a Christian I’m a firm opponent of suicide and know from personal experience how it devastates the survivors. So I can see a little of each side here.

But here’s my big question when it comes to this very personal issue: Why do the proponents of assisted suicide need the approval and cooperation of everyone else in society to do this?

If you want to die it’s not that hard to do. Why do you insist that everyone else not just approve your choice but actually help you do it?   We’re told how personal and painful this is – and I agree with that – but then we’re told we have to be “compassionate” and agree with those choosing to do this and even help them do it (by changing the laws in many states, etc.).

If it’s so personal why do you need my approval? Just do it and shut up about it. I can’t stop you. In the end we’ll all stand before God and answer for what we’ve done and haven’t done. So why do you insist I abandon my own beliefs and morality and approve your own?

If this is what you really want then do it and leave me and the rest of society out of it. I’m not going to approve of suicide even in the rare occasions when I understand why it was done. However I’m also not going to try and run your life for you either.

This is one place where the old traditional American culture of the “rugged individual” would come in handy. Everyone gets to make their choices and then has to live (or in this case not live) with the results.  

What you choose to do it up to you. God gave you free will so use it. But leave me out of it and leave the laws alone. I don’t want my tax dollars going towards something I find offensive and in certain cases evil. 

Bottom Line: Do what you want just leave me alone and I’ll do the same for you.

Assisted Suicide?

My Day In Jury Selection

I just spend today, December 4th, at the courthouse in Parker. No I wasn’t on trial – they keep missing me!  But I was in a big room with a slowly shrinking number of people selecting a jury.

I kept thinking of an old quote so checked it out tonight:

The wheels of justice turn slowly, but grind exceedingly fine.

Variation on a traditional proverb, appeared in various forms over the millennia. Traditionally refers to gods or (later) Christian God rather than justice. Early recorded form of sentiment by Euripides circa 405 BC The Bacchae, line 882, translated as: “Slow but sure moves the might of the gods.”

My personal rewrite of it would be this: “The wheels of justice turn slowly, really, really slowly & keep repeating themselves until your mind is ground into a fine powder.”

Yeah – I know not so catchy but oh so true.

What really got my attention was all the detail and minutia that the lawyers and judge dealt with over and over again. It slowed everything down and nearly drove me crazy. I know why they do it. Both to ensure a just outcome and to find every advantage possible.

It still drove me crazy.

It also made me exceedingly grateful that I don’t have to do that every day. I would go out of my mind if I did.

But I think that’s what a lot of people think I, and other Pastors, do. We are often viewed as little “religious lawyers” who pick away at the Bible to fine new ways to make people either conform or be miserable.

Happily I can assure that’s not true of most of us. I’m always looking to know more about God, and to know God better, so that I can share the grace of love of Jesus with everyone. 

I thank God Jesus died on the cross to set us free from that kind of legalism! That doesn’t mean he still doesn’t have standards, or that I don’t confront people about their sin and dysfunction (I’ve got a couple of  those awful conversations coming soon I fear).

Bur even those are done in love. Because standing on the truth always sets people free. Living in the darkness of denial never has a good ending.

So I’m done with that for now and O so grateful to be living in Grace and not Law!

My Day In Jury Selection