I have learned (and still learning) to pace my self emotionally. In our fast-paced, information-saturated, constant communication culture, there is a magnet that keeps pulling us to depression, negativity, and unhealthy thinking. This pull is not just cultural issues, but the ability to discover so many things that impact family and friends.
So, as you keep caring for your world, care for yourself. Find out the things that fill your positive emotional reservoir, and lean into those gifts.
What a great reminder we receive at CIL yesterday from Brent Batson to “walk with the Lord.”
I like the word “walk.” It is not intimidating. It feels doable. The journey can feel impossible, but when we walk, we can concentrate on the next step.
Take the next step with God.
What does Christianity have to offer culture? The last couple of years it has become evident that a post-Christian culture does not understand grace, forgiveness, and transformation. We offer these.
While that which is secret, underground, and unchecked needs to be exposed; as Christians we oppose the evil stronghold, not the person.
God forgave us, so we forgive.
All humans are flawed.
All humans behave wickedly.
All humans are offered grace.
“What God has made clean, do not call impure.” – Jesus (Acts 10:15)
*This is not in direct reaction to any current news story, but a general observation about our culture’s response to individual shortcomings.
As we return to a more normal work rhythm, let’s not take for granted the jobs, institutions, vocations, and traditions we now carry on.
I love this thought by author David Brooks:
“A person is born into a collection of permanent institutions, including the army, the priesthood, the fields of science, or any of the professions, like being a farmer, a builder, a cop, or a professor. Life is not like navigating through an open field. It is committing oneself to a few of the institutions that were embedded on the ground before you were born and will be here after you die. It is accepting the gifts of the dead, taking on the responsibility of preserving and improving an institution and then transmitting that institution, better, on to the next generation.”
Why do Christians love the Bible so much? There are many answers, but let’s not forget this crucial reason: individual Christians have not always had the Scripture!
For centuries only spiritual leaders could access the Bible. This arrangement made God’s people vulnerable when leadership did not follow God’s heart. The courage and sacrifices of John Wycliffe (1328-1384), William Tyndale (1494-1536) and their ministry partners left us an incomparable gift – the Scripture in English. Read their stories some time.
As you pick your Bible to read in 2019, remember that the ability to read Scripture in your native language was very costly. Whatever we appreciate becomes valuable to us. Let us approach Scripture reading with deep appreciation.
We get to do this!