American Christianity and the crash and burn style of exalting youthful leaders far too early

The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcast series took a week away from the Mars Hill story and focused on another aspect of what has happened in the last few decades in white American evangelicalism through the story of Joshua Harris. If you are not familiar with I Kissed Dating Goodbye and that saga, it gets explained in the podcast.

The host also has an interview on the podcast with Joshua Harris and it is a good interaction.

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Choosing real rest

I’m choosing to ask, “If I really believed the Spirit of the living God is at home in me, making me a child of God right now, how would I live?” Can we handle the kind of intimacy described in Scripture? Our Western preference for safe distance and individual freedom keeps us from receiving what Jesus is actually offering us, an interdependence that may feel a little too close for comfort. — Mandy Smith, Unfettered

We lack serious discipleship

I am working my way through “On Fraternity and Social Friendship” by Pope Francis. An early section is an exposition of the parable of the Good Samaritan. It is heart wrenching to read this section in light of what happened a week ago at the Capitol and what is going on today in the House chamber.

We have lost sight of each other. We have lost sight of our ability to care, especially for those not like us.

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Unicorns and Puppy Dogs

16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. 18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. (Rom. 8:16-18)

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The steep cost of following Jesus

From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him. (John 6:66)

There has to be a willingness to enter in. There has to be a willingness to follow NOT for my own convenience, or because I understand everything fully. I need to follow BECAUSE HE IS LIFE. I trust him, even if I don’t understand him fully in that moment.

The way to greatness

43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. (Mark 10:43-44)

We look for ways to greatness. Christ shows us the way of service. 

A gentle rebuke

I have dropped away from social media for a time. Call it a “Holy Spirit timeout.” The rebuke came this morning when I was in a men’s Bible study and we were reading in 2 Timothy 2. This phrase in v. 25 stuck out:

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