Influence

Over the years what I have always read about, heard about, and believed was Billy Graham had a way to proclaim Christ and be a friend of high powered people without having much of a political agenda.

Then I came across a documentary on a Catholic priest named Theodore Hesburgh. It was unreal how he influenced major government decisions across the board, from Civil Rights to nuclear treaties to the Vietnam War.

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Race and trauma

There is no such thing as race. None… Scientifically, anthropologically, racism is a construct — a social construct. And it has benefits. Money can be made off of it, and people who don’t like themselves can feel better because of it. It can describe certain kinds of behavior that are wrong or misleading. — Toni Morrison

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9/11 — 20 years

We were right to be angry at the great wrongs of 9/11, but at some point, rehearsing that anger year after year doesn’t move us toward justice, love, or the forgiveness Jesus commands of his followers. It moves us toward resentment, hostility, and bitterness, with all the trouble it brings (Heb. 12:15).

We never knew how to mourn. We just knew how to get angry.

We need to learn all over again how to handle the memory.

How we remember is as important as that we remember, as theologian Miroslav Volf has argued, and we should discipline ourselves to remember “both with the desire for knowing truth and with the desire of overcoming enmity and creating a communion in love.”

More HERE.

September 11th exhibit set to open in Middle River

9/11

It’s been 20 years.

It was a fundamental change in our society. I was reminded of so much in a Netflix short series called “Turning Point.” The footage of the day… the phone calls recorded from people who knew they weren’t going to make it out of the towers that day… the phone calls from Flight 93…

The wars that followed… especially Iraq. I think of that time period and being so naive and losing a close Muslim friend over my bent thinking at the time, and it still brings tears to my eyes.

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Book Review — Forty Days On Being a Five by Morgan Harper Nichols

Forty Days On Being a Five by Morgan Harper Nichols is part of the IVP Book series, Enneagram Daily Reflections. I received a review copy from IVP Books.

I am not an Enneagram enthusiast. The learning I have done in this area has come from my wife and I find it helpful in communicating to others who are truly students of the Enneagram. It has been helpful in communicating to those who really know the Enneagram because I can say, “I’m a 5” and they generally nod in a knowing fashion and say something like, “Oh! That makes sense!” Or, “I didn’t have you pegged there.”

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Spiritual Abuse

It doesn’t matter the denomination I serve in, spiritual abuse is a possibility. It is being exposed in my current denomination, the ACNA, in a diocese that is different in operation than my own… which is proving to be a bigger problem overall.

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Trying to live like a whole committee of “selves”

“The outer distractions of our interests reflect an inner lack of integration of our own lives. we are trying to be several selves at once, without all our selves being organized by a single, mastering Life within us. Each of us tends to be, not a single self, but a whole committee of selves.” — Thomas Kelly, A Testament of Devotion

The love/hate relationship with social media

How many times I’ve tried to quit social media… and failed. I take breaks. I look in less often… and yet, there it is. Do I stay engaged? There are times when it irritates the living daylights out of me because there is far too much lack of discernment about those I thought to be “Christian” and I am too often left with my jaw on the floor.

Yet, there are some things to stay engaged with because there is such a serious lack of discernment. These are wise words:

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20 Years

We approach the 20th Anniversary of 9/11. We have, as a nation, not handled this event very well in our collective lives. It is hard to know how a significant anniversary like this will go.

20 years. A lot of change. A lot of shifting. A lot of revealing.

20 years. It is hard to know what lessons have truly been learned and what has gone largely unresolved or ignored.

20 years. We have not mourned. We have not lamented. We have not collectively examined much. We are less for it.

20 years.

Walking with joy into the dark

“But there is a deeper, an internal simplification of the whole of one’s personality, stilled, tranquil, in childlike trust listening ever to Eternity’s whisper, walking with a smile into the dark.” — Thomas R. Kelly, A Testament of Devotion

Lord, let me move from the age of busyness in my life… the internal struggles and turmoils… into this journey. A journey of deep trust. A journey of peace in your presence. A journey where I have a smile even as I plunge into a part of the trail bathed in darkness. You are there. This I trust.

This I want to trust.