This NYT post from 2015 tells the story of Justine Sacco, a senior director of corporate communications firm in New York, whose career was ruined after she posted a series of little jokes about the indignities of travel on her way to South Africa.
This is the dark side of social media.
Abraham’s life goes against our own culture today. Our dominant ideology today yearns for settlement, security, and placement. Everything around us tells us to hunker down, save everything, hedge ourselves about with every protection. Our natural desires are for more comforts. Our culture celebrates home and dynastic families. But God’s word says otherwise, instructing us to seek things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
When there are simple, straightforward jobs to be done, and you are full of sadness, and tears are flowing easily, go ahead and do the jobs with tears. Be realistic. Say to your tears, “Tears, I feel you. You make me want to quit life. But there is a field to be sown (dishes to be washed, car to be fixed, sermon to be written).”
The best kind of life that you could ever have is not in the hoarding of money and in rising to the highest position in your company or in getting prestige for a job well done. They are all good but they are not the greatest. The greatest, according to the Bible, is knowing Christ and living according to his will. So build your life on Christ. This is the only kind of life that has the capacity for real greatness.
—Baccalaureate Address for UE Caloocan
For some reason God always chooses to display his power against the backdrop of human weakness. His remarkable works in the Bible and in history are performed using weak human vessels. I believe he does this on purpose so that we would know that the work of the Lord, the ministries and jobs he gave us, are meant to be accomplished using his power, not ours. J.I. Packer is right. Weakness is the way.
Continue reading Weakness is the Way
Paul tied the love-relationship between husbands and wives to the greater theology of Christ’s relationship with the church. You can’t attack the institution of marriage without attacking the theology of the universal church of Christ. And you can’t claim to be a growing disciple of Christ in the church if your marriage do not bear the resemblance of the relationship between Christ and the church.
Ray Ortlund on Proverbs 1:8-19:
Have you ever felt that envy and resentment deep inside? It is where violence begins. Your heart is lying in wait for blood. When this rage pops up to the surface, observe yourself carefully. You will probably recruit others to your cause. Sin tends to recruit. Watch those thoughts and feelings creeping into conversations with other people. You will want to get others on your side.
Look at [Proverbs 1:14]: “Throw in your lot among us; we will all have one purse.” A cause, even a negative cause, provides a group to belong to. It is one way we nurse our grudges, and it feels good. But whenever we gather around grievance rather than Jesus, that is counterfeit community, black-market relationships, and that negativity is in collision with reality. It cannot succeed long-term.
Joseph Loconte on the Great War:
For the intellectual class as well as the ordinary man on the street, the Great War had defamed the values of the Old World, along with the religious doctrines that helped to underwrite them. Moral advancement, even the idea of morality itself, seemed an illusion. . . . [T]he war to make the world safe for democracy, the holy war to advance Christian ideals, was an unholy delusion.
Lord, teach us to pray!
That request sounds odd to our modern ears. Why would anyone need instruction in prayer?
Ahh, but that question betrays our misunderstanding. Most often, we confuse prayer with wishes, hopes, sighs, laments, and pouring out of feelings. No. Prayer is different. Prayer is finding a way to talk to God. For that to happen, we need Christ, the Christ of the Bible.