My Picks for Thursday 3-31-2016

This is the stuff I found helpful, challenging, interesting, or amusing today that I think may enrich your day as well...

Encouragement and challenge for church volunteers…

No Big Deal. Just a Regular, Old Martyr.Michael Kelley
5513064474_d0a74b98f9_b“In truly ironic fashion, the first Christian martyr was one of the men selected to do the good but often unappreciated volunteer work of the church so the apostles could place their full attention on prayer and their preaching ministry…

…And yet this regular guy, when called on the carpet, boldly delivered a cutting gospel message and then died for his faith…

…Churches are full of these people. They’re not the ones behind the pulpit or strapped up with the guitar. They are the ones who work all day and then come home to get their house ready to host a community. They are the ones who give up their vacation time to drive a church van full of teenagers to camp. They are the ones who spend an extra hour on Sundays rocking babies and changing diapers. They are the regular saints. And Jesus is happy with them.”

Excellent insights from the author of How to Be an Atheist: Why Many Skeptics Aren’t Skeptical Enough

Admit It: Atheists Have a PointMitch Stokes
Apparently, many Christians think that acknowledging an opponent’s strength is a sign of weakness, compromise, or lack of commitment. But it’s not; rather it’s just being intellectually honest. And underestimating your opponent is foolish in any case. Something I learned from Ravi Zacharias years ago is that if you can make a worldview look absolutely ludicrous, you probably haven’t sufficiently understood it.

This is true of atheism. Though there are serious intellectual and pragmatic problems with unbelief—and excellent reasons for belief in God—it isn’t as if atheists have no good points. And it does absolutely no good to fail to admit this. Thoughtful people are going to see straight through simplistic answers. If I consistently ignore the force of atheists’ arguments, if I fail to admit where they get it right, then I shouldn’t be surprised when they ignore me.

I would ignore me too.”

I found this interesting but I’m still not sure what it means…

Evangelicals Least Likely to Pay Close Attention to 2016 Campaign -The Barna Group
“Contrary to past election cycles, evangelical Christians were actually the faith group least engaged thus far with the presidential race. Only one out of five evangelicals (20%) said they were following news about the campaign very closely. Voters who associate with non-Christian faiths (such as Judaism, Islam and Buddhism) reported the highest level of engagement: 41% were following campaign news very closely, which is twice the proportion among evangelical Christians. Even religious skeptics (atheists, agnostics and unaffiliated) were substantially more engaged in the race than evangelicals (36% vs. 20%).”

A lesson from Abraham Lincoln on church conflict…or any conflict, really…

My Side, Your Side, or NeitherDerrick Lynch
“An interesting dynamic occurs in these kinds of church conflict.  Both sides will convince themselves that they are more than just right; they will convince themselves that God is on their side.  When the inevitable resolution comes, the “winners” will rejoice in God’s vindication.  Meanwhile, the “losers” will consider themselves martyrs who will one day experience God’s eschatological vindication.  Thus, in victory or defeat, both sides refuse to give up their claim God that was on their side.

But what if they are both wrong?  What if God wasn’t “on” either side?”

Click image for a larger version. Source: Pearls Before Swine

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *