David and Goliath. Field of Dreams. Star Wars. Rocky. The Sandlot. The local mom and pop store. Underdog stories never get old. We can't help loving them. They also contain a distinctively American flavor, probably because this country only exists because the underdog...
Despite our temptation to draw broad stroke, short-cut evaluations of a church’s faithfulness to Christ based on its forms of worship (music, liturgy, ministries), we must hold back.
The real issue is that people are mean, and they say mean things, and that hurts.
If you hand over your car keys to your sixteen year old, you can pretty well guarantee the car is not going to come back to you in better condition. The spectacle of driving which you will powerlessly witness will be neither textbook safety nor racecar precision. But unless you want to play chauffeur to your maturing young adult, you must run that risk.
It’s not that evangelism training is useless, it’s just that graduating from the latest training program can be a bit like completing one year of med school. Suddenly, you discover you have eight diseases you didn’t even know existed, and you’re offering unsolicited diagnoses to every person who coughs
Prayers are not the same as thoughts. Prayer is petitioning an Almighty God, through the blood and mediation of Christ, to act in ways beyond human capacity.
We’ve all encountered people who are unshakably authentic, who, we can’t help thinking, could perhaps do with being a little more fake. An authentic monster is perhaps better than a monster in disguise, but not by much.
Wisdom does not come from within. Nor will the lifestyle of liberating an “inner child” lead to lasting freedom.
When you think of “pampered, comfortable, spoiled, and entitled,” are these words you mostly use to complain about millenials, or do you recognize how you and I carry some of that same fat?
The reason why the subject of city transformation or cultural renewal will spawn an infinite number of books, articles, and resources, is because by God’s wisdom, the actual process is so hard to pin down. Blessing comes to an area through the lives of upright people. That’s a pretty indirect route.
There is no grand narrative. There is no sweeping, golden standard of right and wrong, of high virtue and deathly vice. All of these are flattened. Our experience is much narrower than that. All that truly matters is your individual, smaller story.
By apathy I do not mean an emotionless shrug at everything that happens, but rather the lack of willpower to act in any sustained and meaningful way to bring about change. Certainly there are exceptions, but they are exceptions.