Two Fish Sticks and a green bottle of Sprite is what I ate and drank on Fridays for lunch in the the 7th grade during Lent Season. Although, we were having fish because there were lots of people giving up meat for the season, the fish sticks and Sprite were a treat for me. This was my first realization of the Lent season and even then I did not really know what it meant. I’m sure there must have been other food served with this delicacy such as French fries and slaw and maybe even a bread roll. Yet,
The spiritual life is not easy. Our false self does not go down without a fight, and one to the death. This is a really inconvenient battle to wage when it is challenging enough to just live life. Who really knew what we were signing up for in following Jesus and taking this journey seriously? Who really knew that the path would evolve and feel more like death and descent? The One Who guides us knows. Others who have gone before know. Be encouraged by the following quote from Joseph Benner an American Protestant mystic who seems to know.
Matthew 28:9 (ESV) And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. The first word of Jesus after his resurrection is hello. He has been betrayed, beaten, abandoned, crucified, and buried. When He rises from the dead and meets the scared and disoriented women He says…hello! The Greek word for greetings is pregnant with joy and energy. Jesus has no victim mentality or revenge seeking mindset. His mindset is one of greetings and joy. His second words are “do not be afraid.” A recent study has shown
Easter weekend is over. It is Monday. Now what? I can only imagine the despair that the crucifixion brought to those who loved and followed Jesus. Saturday did nothing to change their shock, anger, and sorrow. But an empty tomb, appearances to the women and the followers on the road to Emmaus changed everything. Jesus was alive! His resurrection re-energized their lives in an unbelievable way to do unbelievable things. In her wonderful book, A Theology of the Ordinary, Julie Canlis highlights the ‘culture (and cult) of the extraordinary’ in American and many churches. The point she makes is
This past Sunday was the second Sunday of Eastertide. The church calendar has shocked my evangelical sentiments into seeing that the season of Easter is not just one Sunday but a tidal surge of weeks leading through Pentecost and then the Ascension. Part of the Scripture reading was from the gospel of John chapter 20… 19 On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20 When he had said this,
Seasons of life come to us whether we want them to or not. It’s interesting that this is the way God organized and planned the rhythm of life from the beginning. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8;11 states: There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under heaven. A time to be born and time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest. A time to kill and a time to heal A time to tear down and a time to rebuild. A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a
Our life is in union with Christ. Our lives our hidden in Christ with God (Colossians 3), and the life of Christ dwells in us. Our truest life is the life we have in communion with Christ. All the benefits of the gospel flow from our union with Christ! Lent reminded us of our union with Christ in his death. The resurrection of Christ on Easter morning reminds us that we participate in Christ’s resurrection. His resurrection is our resurrection! The Apostle Paul puts it succinctly when he writes, “For if we have been united with him in a
Easter is before us--the most compelling three days of human history. Here we see God's honor inseperable from God's goodness, God's justice being fulfilled in God's mercy, God's righteousness that condemns being the love that restores by surmounting even the obstacle of human disobedience. Easter is God's resolution to God's twin decrees that humanity will share in divine life (2 Peter 1:4) and that death must fall on transgressors of God's holy law (Romans 6:23). It would be monstrous were God's decree that sin shall merit death prove to be false. Justice must prevail for God to be God.