I’ve chosen a theme ride at an amusement park as the metaphor with which to present the posts. Please don’t take it too seriously–I chose where to place some of the posts based more on numbers than on content, though I tried to keep it reasonable. After reading all these posts, I was reminded of the text:
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven” — Ecclesiastes 3:1
We start at the entrance to our ride, which has a historical theme. We’ll be moving through various rooms and displays in small boats on the water, with the displays interpersed with various water slides, bumps, dark rooms, and so forth.
At the entrance we have to wait. There are people trying to sell us drinks, snacks, candy, imprinted hats and shirts, and even tickets to other rides. We have to keep focused!
Fish and Cans offers Am I like Jeremiah?, noting: I find that like Jeremiah, there are times when I am beseiged by distrust. I don’t trust that God will take care of me, that he will bring me relief from the various things that trouble me. And like he did with Jeremiah, God calls me out of that.
Christian Living / Church Life
After a dark tunnel with bumps and groans, we come to a room that looks like it might be an arena. People are running back and forth. There are landslides of loose papers, and scattered books. Our boat tips back and forth as the water surges and carries us through.
John is continuing to journal the study questions in the book The Life You’ve Always Wanted, by John Ortberg, at Brain Cramps for God. This week he’s in the process of answering the questions for Chapter 2, Surprised by Change and Chapter 3, Training vs. Trying.
Tim Schmoyer at Life in student ministry asks “What does it take to have an explosive and dynamic prayer life? Sometimes I feel that my prayers are pointless and ineffective and then scripture points out that I pray like a wuss. Recently God’s been teaching me a lot about how to change that.” and replies in his article, Learning how to have a dynamic prayer life
Andre of Every Square Inch asks “What does a well lived life look like?” and finds that it’s about living a quiet life of humility, faithfulness and a love for others. He offers a brief profile of the late Katherine Hubner as an example of how to run the race and finish strong in his post Katherine Hubner – A Life Well Lived.
Weekend Fisher at Heart, Mind, Soul, and Strength asks “How many people go through the motions of life without feeling, without loving, without caring, without resting?” and then challenges a post-modern Apathetic with the question whether they are alive, or simply undead, in Halloween Special: Night of the Living Dead.
Have you ever went through a tough time? It’s an inevitable part of life. So this week at Light Along the Journey John offers up Ten Steps for Walking Through the Tough Times with God.
Chasing the Wind offered Living in Hope. Just like the Hebrews wanted to fall back on the rules of the Levitical priesthood, we say we rely on Jesus, we say we understand that God will provide all our needs, but we want to hold a little something back, just in case. Is that truly placing our hope in Jesus, or are we secretly placing our hope in something worldly, just in case?
. . . that one took awhile, but did you learn how to deal with the rocking boat as you passed through?
3 The Lord gives perfect peace
to those whose faith is firm.
4 So always trust the Lord
because he is forever
our mighty rock. — Isaiah 26:3-4 (CEV)
Living in the World
We ride down a long water slide and come upon a room depicting life in a small town. But the buildings have been cut out so that we can see the people inside and look at how they live. We see pictures of phone lines, satellites, cell phone towers, and broadcasting towers, showing how the people are connected to the rest of the world.
We are reminded of Paul’s statement in 1 Corinthians 4:9: “. . . we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and to mortals” (NRSV).
Romans 15:4 Project presents Left Wing Liberal Republican for Governor? No, we have a choice!, a wake up call to Christian values voters in Illinois. The Republican candidate for Governor does not hold our values, but we have a choice!
Jeremy Pierce presents Dawkins Prefers Pedophiles to Christians posted at Parableman. Richard Dawkins thinks teaching children to traditional Christian doctrine is more harmful than sexual molestation.
The Evangelical Ecologist has been following the greening of the Church, including covering the recent Grist/PBS series “Is God Green,” with their interview of long-time Christian environmentalist Cal DeWitt. We also have a review up of “A Spiritual Field Guide: Meditations for the Outdoors.”
Jack Yoest presents Looking For A Job…With Tattoos? posted at Reasoned Audacity. Our US Army is getting more recruits with tattoos. And so are you. A third of the population 18 to 29 has a tattoo. Your Business Blogger is a bit outside this age range and our five-kid penta-posse has not yet demanded needles with ink. But this is an exploding fad that will affect business hiring….Sometime ago I questioned my Rabbi, Daniel Lapin, on the issue of tattoos. Yes, I’m Presbyterian who sits at the feet of the JollyBogger. But everyone also needs a Rabbi . . .
The next room is a maze, and it’s dark as we work our way through in the water. But over in the maze are some folks with bright flashlights, and it looks like they know where they’re going. Perhaps we can find our way out of this after all!
Thom at Everyday Liturgy offers Behave or Believe?, a discussion on the return to Biblical principles in Discipleship, Evangelism, and Spiritual Theology so that belief is emphasized over behavior in the modern church.
In the field of medicine and ethics, from Ales Rarus, we have Plan B: Literature Review (Part II). This is the second post in a series. Last time I looked at a couple literature reviews about the methods of action of Plan B emergency contraception (levonorgestrel, LNG). This time I’m presenting On the the mechanisms of action of short-term levonorgestrel administration in emergency contraception (Durand, et al., 2001).
However difficult it may have appeared when we entered the room, we depart safely.
18 I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. — Ephesians 3:18-19 (NRSV)
Between major scenes we have some more peaceful times, but with tastes of various things offered by our ride . . .
Sun and Shield offers Sunspots 78. Each week, after the Christian Carnival, I publish a few links to things I have found of interest, including the Christian Carnival, and, often, posts from that Carnival. This week’s Sunspots includes links to New York Times Book Review reviews of Andrew Sullivan’s The Conservative Soul, by David Brooks, and of Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion, and a few other interesting items. You may need a free log-in to the NY Times to access these links.
Here’s your map and equipment room. Whatever you wanted to do, you’ll find the instructions and the tools. But what is that I see over in the corner? Shovels? You mean we’re going to have to dig?
4 If you seek her as silver
And search for her as for bhidden treasures;
5 Then you will discern the afear of the Lord
And discover the knowledge of God. — Proverbs 2:4-5
Richard of dokeo kago grapho soi kratistos theophilos introduces a new series on the Parables in Luke designed to demonstrate the radical nature of the works of Christ in his post
Slave Parables in the Gospel of Luke.
The parable was not told, then, to show that if we have gifts and talents we should use them wisely or lose them. Rather, it is a warning that if we try to win power in the way that ‘the world’ does, all that will result is that the oppressed will experience only greater oppression. Instead, we are to follow the example of the man on a donkey, who gave up all to attain all.
Once we’ve helped dig a new route for our ride (can you do that???), we find ourselves passing through a room full of low tables we see wax images of monks painstakingly copying manuscripts by hand. It doesn’t look like fun . . .
Barbara of Tidbits And Treasures tells of a New Bible publication literally cuts out unused parts–a Dutch organization has published a Bible for contemporary Christians and cut out all the scripture which might put stress in their lives.
David Ker presents Martin Luther on Bible Translation posted at Lingamish. If Martin Luther were alive today, what would he say about the frequent debates over literal and idiomatic Bible translations? This post looks at some of his colorful quotes about this subject.
Thanks for all the submissions, and for reading to this point! If you found any errors or omissions, please e-mail me, or add a comment. I’ll be happy to make corrections. I sent trackbacks to those who provided trackback URLs.