Yesterday, the Armstrong army made its way from our former home in London, Ontario, to Louisville, Kentucky, as part of our trek to our new home. Today, we’re hitting the road for Franklin! Lord willing, we’ll be there before lunch.
While I’m on the road, enjoy these links and be sure to grab a copy of 131 Christians Everyone Should Know by Mark Galli while it’s still on sale ($1.99).
Timoteo Sazo interviews Isaac Wardell about a sticky issue for many:
Worship leaders and church musicians can sometimes feel responsible for delivering a particular emotional experience every week. When we get in this mindset, we start measuring our work only by the 75-minute increments of our worship services (or however long our services are), and we can miss the bigger picture of how we’re forming our people over a lifetime.
While many evangelicals are quick to condemn alcohol and drug abuse, our drug of choice has become entertainment and fantasy. It softly distracts and weakens Christians daily.
Using entertainment as a primary means of escape is like “chasing the dragon” — a slang phrase, which refers to the continuous pursuit of an ultimate high previously obtained at the initial use of drugs.
Look at the subjective standards of our society. Then look at the values of Christianity. Are we not the clear villains?
…with activities or involvements that revolve around our passions and interests, we can become so focused on how we perform in these matters that we lose sight of serving the Lord and advancing His gospel-driven kingdom. What does this look like practically? Well, in my case, it involves taking sports too seriously sometimes. There are instances when I find myself becoming proud about my performance in basketball, for example, because basketball is a passion of mine. I can recognize those instances, repent over them, and try to avoid such spiritual immaturity next time I play.
The fuzzy, pixelated thinking that social media foments is a good conduit for getting angry, but it’s not actually good at getting things done. This is one lesson that we should learn from an otherwise lamentable protest culture in American universities. Though social media undoubtedly has played an important role in organization, the campus protests that crippled Missouri and made a think piece out of Oberlin have been remarkably present, physical affairs, protests that are connected in meaningful ways to place and people. With Planned Parenthood, there were indeed local protests and rallies. But these gatherings were not unique to a specific cultural moment. Once the assembling was over, the internet consumed the evidence.
The first church I pastored was, on a good Sunday, fifty people. I remember seeing a cartoon about a pastor who wanted to start small groups. “But pastor, our church is a small group!” I’m not sure I laughed.
I spent seven years at that church. I loved them, and for the most part, they loved me. But I occasionally grew frustrated that the church wasn’t bigger. I think I thought that I deserved more.
What a horrible, twisted thought.
Brining back the backlist: Can a true believer blaspheme the Holy Spirit?
Here’s where so many people get confused—what is Jesus talking about here? What does He mean when He says “blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven”? Is it possible for a Christian to commit this sin?
The answer is a lot simpler than some of us realize: Not even a little bit.