He went on his way through towns and villages, teaching and journeying toward Jerusalem. And someone said to him, “Lord, will those who are saved be few?” And he said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
A few months ago, I had an experience which affected me profoundly. It was my birthday. I went for a run down to the waterfront and sat for a little while on the beach looking out at peaceful waves lapping the shore. Since it was my birthday, I was in a bit of a thoughtful mood, reviewing my life and the events of the past year. I began thanking God for each blessing he had given me and all the good things in my life.
I’ve been struck very strongly recently by the fact that there are two possible, radically different ways to live. We each have the choice—I have the choice of which way I will live. This is a very personal conviction, so I’m going to write this as if I’m writing it to myself, which I am.
One of my friends is a fairly new Christian. She recently remarked that she didn’t like reading the Old Testament, and when I asked why, she said “God just seems awfully angry.” I replied with something profound like “hmm”, and the conversation went on from there.
The Good Samaritan, as it's known, may be the most famous of Jesus' parables. Even people who don't claim any Christian faith often know it.
2 540 ml/19 fl oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed
1 341 mil/12 oz liq can corn kernels, drained
1 pint grape tomatoes, cut into quarters
1 large ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, and cut into cubes
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
½ medium purple onion, chopped small
Juice of one large or 2 small limes
extra-virgin olive oil, a few tablespoons
salt and fresh-ground black pepper, to taste
hot pepper sauce to give it a kick, to taste
Mix everything together and enjoy!
Gripped with longing
sudden, swift, severe
a longing I cannot shake.
I know what I'm longing for is a fantasy
which will dissipate into hard reality and leave me emptier and lonelier than before
the promise of unparalleled pleasure morphing into unmatched pain
the moment the bite of that fruit is taken.
My eyes open, the lies exposed,
nothing to cover myself with.
Valentine’s Day is a day that calls up all kinds of emotions if you’re single, most of them negative. No matter how much you convince yourself that it is simply a manufactured holiday which imposes a false sense of obligation on those who are coupled to spend money and drum up a sense of romance (which it is), it nevertheless manages to make you sharply aware of the fact that You Are Single and have no one to a) celebrate the day with or b) agree to not celebrate the day with. Either would be preferable to not having the option.
It’s an evil world. We only have to watch the news to know that. Unspeakable atrocities happen every day on a global scale.
But we don’t have to watch the news to know that. Most of us don’t make it through life without learning it on a personal level. Human atrocities happen every day, on the scale of one human being relating to another. People do terrible things to one another regularly, some that are illegal, some that aren’t. Some that are found out and stopped, some that aren’t.