Monthly Archives: August 2009

“An Ever Increasing Craving for an Ever Dimishing Pleasure Is the Formula”

From C. S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters (p. 44)–remember that it’s told from a devil’s point of view, so “the Enemy” is God and “Our Father” is Satan.
“Never forget that when we are dealing with any pleasure in its healthy and normal and satisfying form, we are, in a sense, on the Enemy’s ground. I know we have won many a soul through pleasure. All the same, it is His invention, not ours. He made the pleasures: all our research so far has not enabled us to produce one. All we can do is to encourage the humans to take the pleasures which our Enemy has produced, at at times, or in ways, or in degrees, which He has forbidden. . . . An ever increasing craving for an ever diminishing pleasure is the formula. . . . To get a man’s soul and give him nothing in return–that’s what really gladdens Our Father’s heart.”
HT: JT

Advertisements

new leadership required…

“But back to the 1% superstar church leaders and the 10% creative priesthood. I have noticed a number of younger ministries recently shift from a key-solo-big-hairy-man-on-stage-leader situation to a shared leadership of a much larger group. Jesus Freaks, in Germany, for example, have just decentralized leadership to a much group of leaders who will guide the ministry into the future.”

HT: tall skinny kiwi


great thoughts on a gospel-centered church

from Tullian Tchividjian
2009-08 tullian-tchividjian picture

“Churches often obscure the glory of the gospel by reducing it to something less than it is. Some understand the gospel only as doctrinal content to be believed. Others diminish it to a personal, subjective experience of God’s presence. Still others see it as a social cause to be championed. The gospel is none of these, and yet it is all of these. A truly gospel-centered church understands and embraces the fullness of the gospel as content, community, and cause.”

GOSPEL CONTENT
The Gospel is a message that is to be preached or proclaimed (Mark 1:14; Acts 14:21; Rom 1:15; 1 Peter 1:12). It is the story of God’s redemption of his fallen creation. It is the good news that God has acted in history to conquer evil and reconcile sinners to himself through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus (1 Cor 15:1-12). A gospel-centered church is one where the gospel is proclaimed clearly, consistently, and compellingly (1 Cor 9:16-23).

GOSPEL COMMUNITY
The gospel is not just a message to be believed, but a power to be experienced (Rom 1:16). The gospel shapes a new community as those who were formerly God’s enemies are reconciled to Him (Rom 5:10) and adopted into his family (Gal 4:4-7). The church is not a place, but a people – a community that is continually being reformed and renewed by the transforming power of the gospel (Col. 1:6).

GOSPEL CAUSE
The gospel is a call to action – a declaration that “the kingdom of God is at hand” (Mark 1:15). God is not just interested in the salvation of humans, but in the restoration of all of creation to its original “good” (Gen 1:31; Rom 8:19-22). A gospel-centered church will be active in the work of mercy, justice, and cultural renewal, praying and working against the effects of sin so that God’s will might be done “on earth as it is in heaven” (Matt 6:10).


thoughts on humility

I read these thoughts today & was challenged. As much as we think we are humble, the flesh has a way of rising up in us. Here is what C.S. Lewis thought of his humility…

2009-07 c.s.lewis

“As a new Christian in 1930, C. S. Lewis was learning terrible things about his heart—the unfathomable layers of pride. It is astonishing how similar his description of his own heart was to the description Jonathan Edwards gave of our inscrutable strata of self-admiration.

Here is Lewis writing to his friend Arthur, amazingly within a year after his conversion:

During my afternoon “meditations,”—which I at least attempt quite regularly now—I have found out ludicrous and terrible things about my own character. Sitting by, watching the rising thoughts to break their necks as they pop up, one learns to know the sort of thoughts that do come.

And, will you believe it, one out of every three is the thought of self-admiration: when everything else fails, having had its neck broken, up comes the thought “what an admirable fellow I am to have broken their necks!” I catch myself posturing before the mirror, so to speak, all day long. I pretend I am carefully thinking out what to say to the next pupil (for his good, of course) and then suddenly realize I am really thinking how frightfully clever I’m going to be and how he will admire me…

And then when you force yourself to stop it, you admire yourself for doing that. It is like fighting the hydra… There seems to be no end to it. Depth under depths of self-love and self-admiration. (quoted in The Narnian by Alan Jacobs, 133)

HT: JT


music Monday

great video by dan le sac vs Scroobius Pip

Here are the lyrics…

HT: SOLAR CRASH


Wed. humor: Colbert on the Bible in Public School Classrooms

Hilarious, but if you have a hard time laughing at yourself, or other people of faith — you might not want to watch this…

Vodpod videos no longer available.

HT: Ben Witherington III


music Monday – U2 in L.A. (1987)

my good friend Dan who teaches Philosophy at Bethel College (oh, how I would enjoy being in one of his classes), used to live in Los Angeles. He now lives in MN & actually loves the winters !!!?? (pray for him…)

Anyway, he shared this with me (U2 filming in downtown L.A.) & told me he actually remembers the day this happened –as he was stuck in school & not able to attend.

U2 – Where the Streets Have No Name (1987 Los Angeles)