I’ve grown to really like this time of year. Sure, I could do without the Christmas music and mass-consumerism every winter brings, but I enjoy the beauty of the season alongside the charity and thankfulness that permeates this time of year. As a holiday, Thanksgiving may have questionable origins; it may even be built upon events we might now find darker than the stories of our childhood. But we bring our own meaning to holidays, and Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to think on the many ways we’ve been blessed and remember our Father, the giver of all good things.
The life of a Christian is one of thankfulness. I Thessalonians says, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” And this comes from an apostle who really did deal with a variety of life circumstances — highs and lows, freedom and imprisonment, successes and failures. David also experienced his shares of joys and troubles in this life, and he wrote, “Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever,” in Psalm 136. Finally James says, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change,” in James 1:17.
As a child of Christ, Thanksgiving is more than a day. It is a way of life. It is my identity. I should be living every day thankful for the blessings I have from my Father and for the redemption I find in Him. Then, if I’m grateful for His gifts, I’m sharing them with others. What better way to show gratitude to our God than by sharing His blessings and His hope with others on a daily basis? It’s great to have this day where we can gather with family and friends to remember our blessings, but the way I live my life is the greatest thanksgiving I can give.
Internet Hate and the Gospel
The living God is grieved when our attacks and slander bring disunity to the body of Christ. There is a better way to spend our time than arguing with other Christians over the Internet. King David declares in Psalm 133:1, “Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity!” The reverse is true as well: How bad and unpleasant it is when brothers have disunity!
Context: How Do We Keep the Church Relevant?
Communicating a message is so much more than designing a logo or making sure your kerning is perfect on a poster. While these things are important, the message or design in any media needs to engage with the audience. If it doesn’t engage, then those people will not take the time or effort to decipher the message.
Armed with the Weapon of Peace
Notice the word doesn’t say peacekeepers, or peace-lovers, or even peace-wanters? We are called to be Peacemakers because of the Prince of Peace who lives in us. We are co-heirs of Christ called to reveal Him and re-present Him to the world. Romans 8:19 tells us that creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. Jesus gave us a great clue to this in that Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5 when He let us know that those who will be called sons/children of God will be marked by peace. And just to be sure, He is certainly calling His daughters as well!
Misconceptions of a Godly Woman
The Proverbs 31 woman is a lot of things; domestic and lovely, successful, and well respected. But most repeated, she is STRONG! Not anything like the passive and weak woman we are so often encouraged to be. She has no fear of winter – the difficult times to come – and is most definitely not limited to planning weddings and using crockpots!
“You’re Not A Pacifist Are You?”
The expectation was for Jesus to be a kind of first century Jewish George Washington. The prevailing sentiment was a yearning for war, not peace. The dominant assumption was that violence was the path that would lead to freedom. When Jesus saw that his vision for the kingdom of God had been conscripted by a violent nationalistic agenda, he wept and lamented the fate of Jerusalem. The patriotic crowd wanted the second coming of Joshua the Canaanite killer, or David the Philistine slayer, or Judas “The Hammer” Maccabeus. But Jesus was not the second coming of any Jewish war hero — he was the first coming of the Prince of Peace!
How to Raise a Pagan Kid in a Christian Home
We’re drinking a cocktail that’s a mix of the Protestant work ethic, the American dream, and the gospel. And we’ve intertwined them so completely that we can’t tell them apart anymore. Our gospel has become a gospel of following your dreams and being good so God will make all your dreams come true. It’s the Oprah god.”