I don’t want to be tone deaf to the problems of covid-19 and the troubled economy. But when I think about addressing either one, I believe the Lord is telling me that others are already doing this, and my job is to continue on in the work I was undertaking before. So here we are, friends. I’m continuing on.
This blog post is one I wrote in 2019. It seems the right time to publish it now.
In the classic movie The Truman Show, Truman’s life is a 24-hour TV series, without his knowledge, for the entire world to see.
The show’s director, on the other hand, lives a very private life. Continue reading “What The Truman Show Can Illustrate About Church”
Pastor: We’re holding this meeting today to talk about ways that we as a community of believers are going to get involved and act as Jesus would to the world of sex trafficking.
Member #1: That’s great—I’ve been hoping we could get involved! Our community has been ripped apart by sexual abuse. It even occurs in our churches, Christian schools, mission programs, Christian universities, Christian camps, youth groups, etc. I have so many friends and neighbors whose lives have been shattered, and they’ve never encountered a church community willing to come alongside them, help them heal, and stand for justice in their oppression. Continue reading “A “We Care About Sex Trafficking” Initiative Parable (By Anonymous Guest Writer)”
About 15 years ago I joined a certain group because everyone else was doing it and it seemed like the thing to do in order to be a better Christian, which of course I wanted very much.
The group followed a format that I found out later was typical, but it was all new to me at that time: We listened together to the respected speaker for the first hour, and then split up into small groups for the second hour.
This is where we would be transparent. Continue reading “That Time I Tried to Be Transparent in a Small Group . . .”
Deborah Brunt is an abuse survivor who blogs at Key Truths.
In the Deep South, you know you’re in trouble when someone says, “Bless your heart!” It means, by translation, “Wow! What a hopeless mess you’re in!” or, “Wow! What a hopeless fool you are!” or, “Wow, am I glad I’m not you!”
The person who speaks the “blessing” may feel genuine sympathy for you. Often, though, they want a “nice” way to say something belittling.
Those times when people might bless our hearts, God wants to bless our lives. For real.
But we will likely miss the blessing if we have a wrong idea of
This is a burden on my heart (that I pulled from yesterday’s post because it deserved its own) because I believe this understanding is crucial to becoming the people of God He has called us to be. I pray it will help someone the way similar teachings helped me in the 1990s.
Spoiler alert: I believe the Bible teaches that the best way for His people to glorify God is to live in the New Covenant.
This isn’t just distant theory. For example, the harmful theology of what has been called “Biblical patriarchy” is based on living in the Old Covenant.
The power of living in the New Covenant (in which all our sanctification is found in Jesus Christ) has tremendous practical application for us right now.
I believe far too few Christians understand the crucial difference between the Covenants and what that difference means, even though it’s explained right there in the New Testament. Continue reading “What’s the Best Way for Us to Bring Glory to God?”
It may feel like voyeurism, reading about it, if you don’t know any of these people.
But as I’ve been saying for some time now, I can be pretty doggone certain that you do know or at least interact with a survivor of sex trafficking, even if you don’t think you do. Because they are all around you.
My primary work is with those who have been sex trafficked in the Christian world. And believe me, there are parallels.
One person or small group of people is/are the traffickers. They may be relatively obscure, as Epstein was.
Others, the wealthy and elites (in my experience, it’s primarily been the wealthy and elites in the Christian world) are the buyers who take advantage of the trafficker’s “services.” (Flying in to the trafficking location is not a problem for the Christian elite.)
There’s a lot to learn about how this all works by reading about the Jeffrey Epstein case. Continue reading “Why the Jeffrey Epstein Case Matters to Christians”
Erika Smith grew up in an abusive home in which the parents claimed Christianity. She is still a follower of Jesus in spite of the way she and her siblings were treated by her parents and the casual “forgive and forget” dismissal she has received from churches where she has tried to get help. Continue reading “Did I Do All I Could for My Siblings? (Guest Post by Erika Smith)”
In 2008, the movement calling itself “Biblical patriarchy” was in its heyday.
In 2008, the beautiful Botkin sisters, paragons of the visionary daughterhood espoused by “Biblical patriarchy,” were 20 and 22 years old. Three years earlier, at 17 and 19, they had published their book So Much More: The Remarkable Influence of Visionary Daughters on the Kingdom of God which went on to influence many impressionable teen girls that their highest calling was to fulfill their father’s every whim. Continue reading ““The Return of the Daughters” Meets Rachael Denhollander”
It’s supposed to be encouraging when we hear that God the Father sees His children through the filter of His Son Jesus Christ. I’ve seen Christians almost come to tears when they talk about how God the Father is wearing “blood-colored glasses” to look at us, seeing the righteousness of His Son instead of our sinfulness. Continue reading “Here’s What’s Wrong With God Looking Through the “Filter” of Jesus to See His Children”
Last week I received a letter from my friend Ana. The first part of her first question read:
In the Reformed/Gospel-centered movement, the focus seems to be on how sinful and wicked and powerless we all are and how comforted and relieved we should be when we look to the cross. It seems like the answer to most problems is to look to the cross more. I don’t even know exactly what that means. For me, it encouraged a miserable cycle of wallowing in how awful I am and basing the Christian life on the feelings I get when I think of Jesus dying for me.
Here is my reply: Continue reading ““Look To the Cross More”: A Response to the “Gospel-Centered” Movement”