But technology is not valuable in every circumstance. I’m thinking particularly about the use of Bible apps on cell phones or tablets. Sure, it’s convenient to utilize a digital Bible in numerous settings—like reading (or listening) just before you fall asleep at night, or when you unexpectedly want to look up something during a discussion. But in a church meeting (Bible studies, Sunday’s gatherings, etc.), I strongly recommend using a “paper” Bible for four reasons.
Matt Capps shares a great quote from C.S. Lewis.
Yesterday we surveyed the wreckage that a fallen pastor leaves behind him and made some suggestions about how to begin repairing the damage. Part of this involves speaking God’s Word of life to the particular needs of the bleeding congregation. It’s not a time for beating around the bush, for denial, for forgetting, for “putting it behind us,” or for “moving on.” Instead God’s all sufficient and all-suitable Word should be applied skillfully to the specific wounds inflicted by this sin. A series of sermons should touch on the following subjects.
Matthew Lee Anderson:
The church might want to resist the pressure for marriages to have children through any means possible, and hold on instead to infertility as a unique and irreplaceable witness within its inner life. It is easy to look at such sadness and think that if we can avoid it, we are best off doing so. But the church might lose something crucial if there are no childless marriages in our midst. That we can make children through IVF does not entail that we should. But widespread acceptance of IVF means that we risk forgetting both the struggles of permanent barrenness and its unique virtues. The special vocation of the infertile means recalling the church to goods that our technologically sophisticated world has forgotten and obscured.
What concerns me about the show is that the central conceit of the series feeds one of the drivers of teenage suicide, and that is the sense of suicide as storyline. Many depressed teenagers that I’ve talked to over the years, and others with suicidal tendencies, don’t actually want to be dead as much as they want to end one story and start another. In many cases, the suicide becomes, in the imagination, the way to resolve storylines that one sees no other way to resolve. In some cases, I’ve found, what the teenager imagines is not so much the shadow of death (though many do speak of a longing for death as a kind of sleep), but instead is the aftermath of the suicide itself.
Sermon, prayer, song, postlude. The worship service ends and the scramble begins—get the children, get the jackets, head for the door. It’s time for lunch.
Though we exchange brief “how-are-yous” with the folks in our pew, our pleasantries make it clear we’re not sticking around. We have food to eat, sports to watch, and naps to take.
A favorite from the archives:
I was discussing writing another book with a friend last night. It’s something I want to do, obviously, and have been working toward. But that conversation brought me back to this idea of a children’s book. So I went back and re-read what I had done so far (I’d gotten a little more than halfway through it). And honestly, it wasn’t bad as a starting point. It meandered a bit, but it could have some potential if it were tightened up, and were a little more openly goofy instead of subtle.
Y’know, and finished.