Nice article over at the Jesus Manifesto blog. This piece peaked my interest:
the words of Jacques Ellul: “Each time the people of God becomes effective according to the world´s criteria, this only implies that society has absorbed our action and is using it for its own ends and for its own profit. …The efficacy we think we have is simply a power in the world´s service, for the perfecting of its own being, for its better organization….”
And I am also reminded that Jesus sent out his disciples, not only poor, but humanly powerless, “as lambs in the midst of wolves.” I recall how he squandered his popular following and fell prey to the religious authorities of his time, because he did not respect the power of the crowd or the power of rulers. Jesus did not need their power to build his kingdom. God had given the kingdom. It existed in the lives of Jesus and his disciples as a gift to them, and they announced it as a gift wherever they went: “The kingdom of God has come near to you.”
Yesterday, i was reading through my blogs. I found these 4 articles. Each hit me in a deep way. Read on. Be inspired….
1. A Little Bit of Right by Jesse Hanna. Sometimes ministry can be frustrating. It’s great when something goes right.
2. Resurrection Monday by Brad Cooper. On Easter, i was pumped about Jesus. Brad reminded me that the same things that were true on easter are true on monday, tuesday, and everyday.
3. In Touch with Jesus by Nathaniel Dame. 3 years ago, there wer some observations about youth ministry. Seems like they’re coming true…
4. Made in China by Jeromy Johnson. If you think life is moving along swimmingly and your all safe and secure in your little bubble of wealth and comfort, you probalby don’t want to read this article. If you’re willing to
Today I’ve been thinking about bullying.
I know when i use the word “bully,” certain images come to mind: images of a mean 4th grader telling another 4th grader that she’s fat, or a group of jr. high girls blatantly “shunning” another girl, or maybe the image of a cocky college football player comes to mind.
But bullying takes so many different forms. I see it everyday in so so many places. Chase Bank recently “bullied” me into following their policies even though i was told differently. Time Warner cable recently bullied a friend of mine by quoting him several different rates for the same cable package. The big 3 auto-makers bullied our governement into handing them tax-payer money, even though their collapse was based on their poor business model. Churches all over the world “bully” people into agreeing with them. Churches use hell, the bible, emotions, traditions, and membership as leverage to get people to follow. Renters use a well-i-own-this-property mentality to bully rentees into submission.
Notice that each of these “bullies” may use a different form:
Chase bank used their policies to “bully”
Time Warner used their costomer service department to “bully”
Auto-Makers use the personal stories of their employees to “bully”
Churches matipulate the words of Jesus and God to “bully”
Renters use their “ownership” to bully
I’m not saying that these “bullies” have no right to whatever they are getting, they do. I am saying that they could get the exact same thing without bullying. They could simply respect and love people.
Also, people tend to leave and move away from bullies. Bullies end up as things of the past. I’m leaving Chase bank. MY buddy is leaving Time Warner. Millions of people are leaving the big-3 automakers and moving to something else (honda, toyota, etc…). And everyone knows about a dozen people who have been pissed off by churches in one way or another.
So this is my new resolution: if people are bullies, i’m leaving (then they’ve got no one to bully) and also, i’m not going to be the bully.
Jesus said his yoke was easy and his burden was light. He scolded religious leaders for lording their authority over people. Jesus didn’t like bullies (even if they were “technically” correct). In fact, no one like bullies.
This video made me laugh. But also made me a little sad. But then i saw the creativity and innovation that the creator of the video put into it, and he/she didn’t make a dime for it….
Blog.Worship hooked me up with a link to this interview with Barrack Obama. It is an interview done about his spiritual life and beliefs. He talks a bit about sin and hell and other things. The whole interview is there so you don’t have to worry about spin or bias or whatever (which is refreshing).
head to Ed Gilbreath’s blog and read about his “post-election peace pledge”
- i pledge to support and pray for the president and government leaders – regardless of whether i voted for them
- i pledge to be critical of the president and government leaders – regardless of whether i voted for them
- i pledge to continue to stay well read in local/national political issues – because my vote on november 4th is actually a very small part of my duty as an american citizen
- i pledge to continually engage others in a healthy, civil political dialogue – regardless of who’s in power
what is your post election peace pledge?
rethinkngyouthministry brought my attention to this video. great stuff.