Thursday, December 29, 2011

New Year’s Resolution

The English poet John Milton (1608-1674) is most remembered for his poem Paradise Lost. However, in another poem, he made a scathing comment about the church of his day. Remembering Jesus’ reference to Christians as sheep, (Luke 15) he wrote, “the hungry Sheep look up [expectantly], and are not fed.” I was recently told that this remains true 400 years later. A large number of church going Christians are either turned off faith entirely, or at least refuse to attend regularly. They arrive expectantly, but leave disappointed.

Is this you? Would you rather sit at home and watch Sunday morning football because it gives you more to chew on than going to church? Or do you attend hoping that this Sunday might just be different?

If so, Faith Formation might be something you might be interested in. As the American pastor and author A.W. Toser wrote over fifty years ago, Faith Formation is “a modest attempt to aide God’s hungry children to find Him.”

Have you made your New Year's resolutions yet? Mine is always the same… to follow closer after Jesus. If this is your desire this coming year, I encourage you to contact me and come for a free one hour session.

Friday, December 23, 2011

What are your Diffabilities?

Living with disabilities like a visual impairment, partial paralysis and memory loss allows me to sympathize with others who struggle. We are not alone. We have ‘different abilities’ aka diffabilities that we can offer, entirely because of the things that we cannot offer. What are your diffabilities?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Humbugs about Christmas?

At around this time of year, we may be overwhelmed with excitement about what we will celebrate later on this month. Others however, might be overwhelmed with responsibility, sapped of joy and energy because we believe it is our job to give the best gift, throw the biggest party, or host the most delicious meal. At no time during the year does it seem more important to “Love our neighbour as we love ourselves.” (Matt 7:12, Luke 6:31) But what if we don’t have enough energy to do this? What if we are humbugs about Christmas?

Well, let’s see if we can turn this rule around a little. What if it read this way? “Do for yourself as you would like to do for others.” Jesus first stated the Golden Rule in front of people who were already doing so much for themselves that they needed a change. Many of us have been raised on this rule and we too need a change. However, if we turned it around, what might happen? Could we do that?

I can hear you saying “I will just become ego-centric and self absorbed” like how the teachers of Jesus day were. However, instead of throwing the best party for your friends and colleagues, attempting to give them the best gift, or making the best meal for them, do it for yourself instead and invite them along. It’s not their party anyway, it’s yours, they are just invited guests.

If you click the title of this blog, you will be taken to a U-tube video of a Winnipeg teenager’s version of “The Little Drummer Boy”. The teenager was having a blast doing what he loved, and I am sure the Lord Jesus received this birthday present gladly because he was an invited guest of honour. If you consider yourself a Christmas Humbug with nothing to offer, can you offer Him the privilege of watching you “Do for yourself as you would like to do for others”?