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Stepping into the Ring . . . Getting a Love Tap

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Have you ever had those times of prayer and contemplation when you feel like you stepped into a boxing ring with God? And, much like any of our chances against a real heavy weight champion, we get, not only knocked down, but knocked out. Kierkegaard wrote about the Bible that it is not only speaking to me, it is speaking about me. This does not only happen reading the Bible. There are other books that bring the same response. They seem to just pummel us where God is concerned. It can be so convicting that our selfish, complacent faith is bruised and beaten. It is not that God wants to beat us into submission. That’s not his style or modus operandi. He loves us too much for that. But, there are times when what we encounter brings us to the point of feeling that we have been dropped into the ring with God. This happened to me today in such a powerful way. It was overwhelming. These times are real and too often few and far between. I know it is my fault because God promises that when we s…

Ninja's For Christ

I was just on vacation visiting my son. He is a martial artist and he invited his mother and me to watch him test for his 4th degree black belt in taekwondo. While we were there, we observed him as he trained in jujitsu. That’s what he does for fun. He teaches taekwondo and for recreation does jujitsu. I took taekwondo for several years so I know a little about it. We were taught to try to avoid being knocked to the ground. On the ground, you were in trouble. Jujitsu is a ground based martial art. So, I guess my son has both situations covered.

Taekwondo is graceful, fluid and well-choreographed. Each move is part of a patterned whole which is called a “form.” Each move is the result of a particular technique and designed with a purpose. All those moves are for more than just looking pretty. Taekwondo is flowing, powerful and graceful. When executed properly, it is beautiful to watch.

Jujitsu, on the other hand, seems more reactionary, more down and dirty. It is for scrappin…

Emptiness = Exoneration

You cannot listen to the news today without hearing the word “exoneration” mentioned at least twice. Exoneration is the action of officially absolving someone from blame. It is official as it comes from one with authority to declare the purported offender free from blame or guilt. While in our current political climate this has sparked much debate, in the spiritual realm if hasn’t! As we approach Easter, we notice the emptiness. The emptiness of the cross where the King of Glory died. He died – not an untimely death of a young martyr – but as the sacrificial Lamb of God slain for the sins of the world. On that cross hung the only truly innocent man in the history of mankind. He suffered and died, not for anything he had done, but exclusively and only for what we had done. The centurion who stood at the foot of the cross while Jesus’ execution transpired, witness the whole ugly scene. And witnessing Jesus’ words and actions on the cross he mutters words that fall short of what actuall…

Be All You Can Be

Have you ever noticed that some of the greatest adverting themes were plagiarized from God? Those iconic ad campaigns could just as easily be used by Jesus. You don’t have to dig too hard or far to see that this is true.

Nike: “Just do It”
United States Marines: “Looking for a Few Good Men”

Coca-Cola has a list of themes for their ads through its history listed on line. (https://www.coca-colacompany.com/stories/coke-lore-slogans) So many of these could be used as spiritual themes.

1924 – Refresh Yourself
1927 - Pure as Sunlight
1929 – The Pause That Refreshes
1942 – The Only Thing Like Coca-Cola Is Coca-Cola
1952 – What You Want Is a Coke
1963 – Things Go Better with Coke
1976 – Coke Adds Life
1988 – You Can’t Beat the Feeling
1990 – You Can’t Beat the Real Thing

You get the picture. Replace the product name with Jesus’ name and there you have it!

But I think one that Jesus would use and may have in a different form was cooped by the US Army: “Be All You Can Be.” Isn’t that really the message J…

God or Molek?

It is hard not to admit that we seem to be living in some far-fetched end-times sci-fi novel with dystopian features. However, this is not a fantasy and it is really happening. The concepts and notions contained in that genre of literature has come to life in modern 21st century America. We are not imagining it. It is a reality. For me, there has been a tsunami of events that has led me to this feeling of despair for our society as we dive headfirst into the abyss.

This whole season was not without prediction. St. Paul, in his second letter to his young protégé Timothy, wrote: “evil men and imposters will go from bad to worse deceiving and being deceived.” (2 Tim. 3:13) In his first letter to Tim, he said: “such teachings will come from hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.” (1 Tim 4:2) The term “seared” literally means “to be cauterized” – to be desensitized. This perfectly describes the coming wave of assault on life by abortion proponents.

I have …

How Much Is Too Much?

At a recent Christmas gathering a humorous incident occurred that led to some amusing comments. One family with small children came to the event in two separate vehicles. When one spouse had to leave early to prepare for an event at their church, instead of switching all safety equipment for the little ones, they just exchanged vehicles. However, the departing spouse had keys to both vehicles and left the remaining spouse without use of their transportation. They were unable to make it to the church event because they were stranded. Several options were offered to correct this mishap. None proved feasible and the parent with the children totally missed out on the church event.
In an effort to offer some perceived sanity to the situation, another relative remarked that the church would still be on Sunday and missing once when the doors were open could not do any harm.
This begs the question: How much is too much time at church? There was considerable discussion about this t…

Naughty or Nice?

Every year at this time there are so many Santa Claus sightings that you have no concept of who the real one was. And, based on the lunacy in today’s culture, we probably never will. A recent poll – as if gender could be determined by popular opinion – has found that 27% of respondents think Santa Claus should be female or gender neutral (as if that is a biologically viable option). This just adds to the ridiculous myth about the jolly fat guy giving us what we want.

The problem with the current versions of Santa Claus is that they do not contain even the slightest resemblance to the original St. Nicholas of Myra. He was a bishop and a devout follower of Jesus Christ, the real reason for the season.

Too many people project onto Almighty God their perception of the qualities and characteristics they falsely believe about Santa Claus. All you have to do is sit on the big guys lap, ask him for what you want, and he will deliver it with better efficiency and timing than the Post Office. The…