Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Mary's Shame Reversed

Scot McKnight's blog, Jesus Creed, often features posts and articles by a young pastor named Jonathan Storment that I've really enjoyed.  Today he hits a home run with a piece about the shame that Mary endured until Jesus' resurrection reversed everything.  I hope you'll take time to read this article.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Churchnet's Annual Meeting

I'm looking forward to the annual gathering of Churchnet this Friday and Saturday at First Baptist Church Jefferson City.  As is our custom, we'll begin the time together with a missions banquet, eating some good food together, but more importantly, celebrating what the Lord has done through our missions efforts.  This year we will highlight the trip several of us took last October to Cuba as well as our ongoing partnership with Guatemalan Baptists.

This year's theme for the gathering is a timely one in light of all the recent incidents of racial tension and violence in our nation.  The theme is Share Hope: Building a Community of Peace and Reconciliation.  In addition to our plenary gatherings for worship and inspiration, a number of breakout sessions will focus on the theme of sharing hope as well.  The following breakout sessions will be offered twice each on Saturday morning:

Worship that Advances Peace & Reconciliation – Brian Kaylor
Understanding Racial Issues from a Historical Perspective – Molly Fleming-Pierre
Mission JC – Melissa Hatfield
An Introduction to a Conversation on Race – W. T. Edmonson
Disaster Relief Ministry with Chain Saws – Gary Hurst
Beneath the Skin (Documentary & Discussion) – Jim Hill
Leadership the Ozarks Way – Bob Perry
Preparing for a Cross-Cultural Mission Trip – Gary Snowden

If you are in driving distance of Jefferson City this weekend, we'd love to have you come and join us for this annual meeting.  You can register at Churchnet's website:  http://www.churchnet.org/ or simply show up and register there. 


 

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Shane Claiborne on "Holy Week in an Unholy World"

I've been sharing several different blog posts this week from different authors as they reflect on the significance of the cross and Holy Week or Semana Santa as it's known in Latin America.  Today I read this post by Shane Claiborne on the Red Letter Christians blog.  One story he tells was especially gripping.  I'll quote him here:

One of the most powerful Good Friday services we’ve ever had was a few years ago. We carried the cross into the streets and planted it outside the gunshop in our neighborhood. We had our services there. We read the story of Jesus’s death… and heard about the women weeping at the foot of the cross. And then we listened to the women in our neighborhood weep as they shared about losing their kids to gun violence.

Calvary met Kensington.

Afterwords, one woman said to me: “I get it! I get it!” I asked her what she meant. And then she said something more profound than anything I ever learned in seminary: “God understands my pain. God knows how I feel. God watched his Son die too.” Then I realized she was the mother of a nineteen-year-old who had just been murdered on our block.

God understands our pain. That is good theology for Good Friday. And that kind of theology only happens when we connect the Bible to the world we live in. It happens when worship and activism meet. We don’t have to choose between faith and action. In fact we cannot have one without the other.

Let’s get out of the sanctuaries and into the streets.
- See more at: http://www.redletterchristians.org/holy-week-in-an-unholy-world/#sthash.H4TES42l.dpuf
 "One of the most powerful Good Friday services we ever had was a few years ago.  We carried the cross into the streets and planted it outside the gunshop in our neighborhood.  We had our services there.  We read the story of Jesus' death ... and heard about the women weeping at the foot of the cross.  And then we listened to the women in our neighborhood weep as they shared about losing their kids to gun violence.

Calvary met Kensington.

Afterwards, one women said to me: "I get it!  I get it!"  I asked her what she meant.  And then she said something more profound than anything I ever learned in seminary: "God understands my pain.  God knows how I feel.  God watched his Son die too."  Then I realized that she was the mother of a nineteen-year-old who had just been murdered on our block. 

God understands our pain.  That is good theology for Good Friday.  And that kind of theology only happens when we connect the Bible to the world we live in.  It happens when worship and activism meet.  We don't have to choose between faith and action.  In fact we cannot have one without the other.

Let's get out of the sanctuaries and into the streets."
One of the most powerful Good Friday services we’ve ever had was a few years ago. We carried the cross into the streets and planted it outside the gunshop in our neighborhood. We had our services there. We read the story of Jesus’s death… and heard about the women weeping at the foot of the cross. And then we listened to the women in our neighborhood weep as they shared about losing their kids to gun violence.

Calvary met Kensington.

Afterwords, one woman said to me: “I get it! I get it!” I asked her what she meant. And then she said something more profound than anything I ever learned in seminary: “God understands my pain. God knows how I feel. God watched his Son die too.” Then I realized she was the mother of a nineteen-year-old who had just been murdered on our block.

God understands our pain. That is good theology for Good Friday. And that kind of theology only happens when we connect the Bible to the world we live in. It happens when worship and activism meet. We don’t have to choose between faith and action. In fact we cannot have one without the other.

Let’s get out of the sanctuaries and into the streets.
- See more at: http://www.redletterchristians.org/holy-week-in-an-unholy-world/#sthash.H4TES42l.dpuf
One of the most powerful Good Friday services we’ve ever had was a few years ago. We carried the cross into the streets and planted it outside the gunshop in our neighborhood. We had our services there. We read the story of Jesus’s death… and heard about the women weeping at the foot of the cross. And then we listened to the women in our neighborhood weep as they shared about losing their kids to gun violence.

Calvary met Kensington.

Afterwords, one woman said to me: “I get it! I get it!” I asked her what she meant. And then she said something more profound than anything I ever learned in seminary: “God understands my pain. God knows how I feel. God watched his Son die too.” Then I realized she was the mother of a nineteen-year-old who had just been murdered on our block.

God understands our pain. That is good theology for Good Friday. And that kind of theology only happens when we connect the Bible to the world we live in. It happens when worship and activism meet. We don’t have to choose between faith and action. In fact we cannot have one without the other.
- See more at: http://www.redletterchristians.org/holy-week-in-an-unholy-world/#sthash.H4TES42l.dpuf
One of the most powerful Good Friday services we’ve ever had was a few years ago. We carried the cross into the streets and planted it outside the gunshop in our neighborhood. We had our services there. We read the story of Jesus’s death… and heard about the women weeping at the foot of the cross. And then we listened to the women in our neighborhood weep as they shared about losing their kids to gun violence.

Calvary met Kensington.

Afterwords, one woman said to me: “I get it! I get it!” I asked her what she meant. And then she said something more profound than anything I ever learned in seminary: “God understands my pain. God knows how I feel. God watched his Son die too.” Then I realized she was the mother of a nineteen-year-old who had just been murdered on our block.

God understands our pain. That is good theology for Good Friday. And that kind of theology only happens when we connect the Bible to the world we live in. It happens when worship and activism meet. We don’t have to choose between faith and action. In fact we cannot have one without the other.
- See more at: http://www.redletterchristians.org/holy-week-in-an-unholy-world/#sthash.H4TES42l.dpuf

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Latest Edition of Churchnet's Monthly E-Magazine

The latest issue of Churchnet's monthly digital E-magazine is available for your reading pleasure and information.  March's issue focuses primarily on the upcoming annual meeting at FBC Jefferson City scheduled for Apr. 24-25.  Highlights of the annual meeting always include our missions banquet that will share information about our international partnership efforts in places like Guatemala, Cuba, and the Ukraine; great speakers and worship; several informative breakout sessions; and the unveiling of the new strategic plan for 2015-2020.  I hope you'll read the magazine but also strongly encourage you to consider attending the annual gathering itself.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

"Celebrating" an Execution

If you don't regularly subscribe to Scot McKnight's Jesus Creed blog, you really ought to do so.  He always features some outstanding posts--both those that he personally writes and others that he shares from other bloggers.  In this Holy Week, Jeff Cook's blog post about "Celebrating" and Execution is a vivid reminder of how Christ' death transformed the imagery and meaning of the cross.  Click on the link to read it and you won't be disappointed.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

A Great Dorothy Sayers Quote for Easter

As I was reading Scot McKnight's blog earlier this week in which he included a post by Jonathan Storment, I came across this quote from Dorothy Sayers that Jonathan Storment includes.  It's a timely reminder of what Jesus suffered in His incarnation as He took our sins upon Himself.

"For whatever reason God chose to make man as he is— limited and suffering and subject to sorrows and death—He had the honesty and the courage to take His own medicine. Whatever game He is playing with His creation, He has kept His own rules and played fair. He can exact nothing from man that He has not exacted from Himself. He has Himself gone through the whole of human experience, from the trivial irritations of family life and the cramping restrictions of hard work and lack of money to the worst horrors of pain and humiliation, defeat, despair and death. When He was a man, He played the man. He was born in poverty and died in disgrace and thought it well worthwhile." –Dorothy Sayers

Friday, February 27, 2015

Churchnet's E-Magazine Features Guatemala Partnership

My buddy and colleague, Brian Kaylor, has put together an outstanding presentation in this month's Churchnet E-magazine about our Guatemala partnership.  Take a look at it here.