Are you in pristine condition, fresh out of the box? Or do you feel worn down, cracked, or even broken?
But if we really hear these stories, they seem to just glorify sin. And this is why I - and many others who have the same story as I do - often feel that our stories are inadequate.
Probably due to my parents love for each other and for history (there favorite year is the Battle of Hastings, do you know when that is?), both my brother and I developed a strong love for all things back then. I assume this is why I a so in love with Church History.
John has some major themes which are in both his Gospel and epistles: light and dark, remaining in Christ, and love. For John, be in the light and not in the dark was remaining in Christ and to remain in Christ was being love. These were themes all believers had the opportunity to live in. All could walk in the light. All could remain in Christ. And all would be loved.
We all experience and struggle with not being enough. This poem was originally written my Freshman year of college as I grappled with identity and who I was becoming. I made a minor edit to reflect theological growth while retaining the fear and pain of who I thought I was as a Freshman as well as the feelings of disappointing God and others.
As I entered the later years of my high school church experience, I yearned for tradition and community that could be found outside of my congregation's four-walls. I would often go home from my seeker friendly, 150+ student youth group of lights, games, and a Jesus loves you message devastated and crushed, crying to my dad, "Is this all the church has to offer?"
We are called to run, to persevere in our faith. There is a race before us that we are called to be a part of. Anyone who races - or watches races - knows it is involves pacing one's self. In a sprint, that pacing is very important before the race. A marathon, on the other, is all about setting a pace at the beginning and sticking to it.
For those who grew up in the church, attending Sunday school and midweek programming, summer camp and Vacation Bible School, when we think about Bible stories, we can probably name about ten or fifteen stories in a minute. But even those of us who adopted regular Bible reading in our teens and young adulthood will begin to have difficulty naming more stories. This isn't for lack of trying or concentration, there are just a lot of stories. Not to mention, many of the stories are so similar it can be difficult to keep them straight.
"I felt in need of a great pilgrimage so I sat still for three days and God came to me."
I recently finished my third and final Hebrew class for seminary. Hebrew is unlike anything else I have ever taken, including Greek. With Greek, which I have taken seven semesters of total - four in undergrad, three in grad - all the letters were at least familiar. Not only do most of us know them [...]