Image found at nesta.org.uk
In the past few months, I’ve come to a realization about the United States: We’re a culture of obsessive bean counters. For example, consider how most church denominations measure successful ministries. Number of baptisms. People in pews. Amount of tithes and offering. There are now church consultants who will show up to your Sunday meeting place and tell your pastor how he (or she) can get more visitors in the door. They talk about marketing, events, branding, website SEO–terms more commonly heard in the corporate offices of Apple and McDonald’s.
Rarely do we realize how much corporate culture affects our thinking and worldview. But it does. It permeates everything–including how we view ourselves and how we live our lives. Continue reading
“Snake oil” medicine bottles. From Wikipedia.
It’s been interesting watching the presidential election unfold in the U.S. It is truly revealing the hearts and intentions of those who claim to follow Christ.
For example, I’ve seen articles and videos from so-called prophets and church leaders insisting that Christians should vote for a certain orange-tinted candidate. And not just insist, but actually shame those who have declared they cannot vote for such a person. A few days ago, I read an article by one gentleman who says Christians who dare oppose said candidate for moral reasons are Pharisees…just like the people who crucified Jesus.
I wasn’t going to write about Donald Trump. I wasn’t going to feed the narcissistic machine. I assumed he wouldn’t get this far. I assumed the bluster would blow over after a while–that people would realize who he is and let him fade into obscurity.
When he said Megyn Kelly had “blood coming out of her…wherever,” I thought surely now people will see that this is a man without respect.
When he mocked a respected POW from the Vietnam War, I thought surely now people will see that this is a man without honor.
When he belittled his opponent by threatening to expose his wife’s mental illness, I said surely now people will see that this is a man without mercy.
When he shamelessly ridiculed a disabled person, I said surely now people will realize this is a man without empathy.
When he called his own supporters idiots and insulted members of his own party, I thought surely now people will see that this is a man without loyalty.
When the newspapers began to expose his shady business practices and multiple lawsuits, I thought surely now people will see that this is a man without integrity. Continue reading
Two weeks ago, Christian rock singer Trey Pearson came out as gay. His band, Everyday Sunday, had multiple albums and several #1 hits on the CCM single’s chart. Trey said he had tried for years to become straight, even marrying a woman and fathering two children, but nothing had changed. He wasn’t sexually attracted to his wife, was unable to meet her intimate needs, and felt burdened by having to pretend to be someone he clearly wasn’t. He and his wife had mutually agreed to separate, putting a plan in place for him to continue to be very involved in raising his children.
What shocked me about this announcement was the response to it. A fairly well-known Christian radio show host spat on Twitter that Trey was ungodly, and so were all the other CCM artists who had come out as gay in recent years.
All Trey had confessed to was same-sex attraction. Not an affair. Not abusive behavior. Not breaking one of the commandments. Just “I like men.” Yet that statement alone was enough to erase his godliness and call his salvation into question.
A while back, a reader asked if I would blog more about my experience with depression in marriage. Since then, the topic hasn’t been far from my mind. Finally, after nine months, I have some thoughts to share.
My husband and I have known each other for about 16 years, and in August we will celebrate 9 years of marriage. Hubby and I have always gotten along very well. We are quite comfortable with each other. Touch being my primary love language, we are frequently and openly affectionate. We touch as we pass each other in the kitchen, as we ride together in the car, as we say goodbye in the morning and hello in the evening. His touch has become so familiar to me, it’s nearly as familiar as my own. Disagreements between us are rare; yelling and snipping almost non-existent.
But… Continue reading