Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Prata Potpourri: writers, future husbands, the broken way, just silence, post-sermon discouragement...more

Here are some other bloggers for you, their good thoughts and insights. Enjoy!


For all the hand-wringing we do over the immature state of the next biblical generation coming up, their lack of biblical knowledge causes one to wonder, who will be the next generation of authors, bloggers, editors? Samuel D. James makes 4 requests to young evangelical writers
We can be honest about our experiences and how they form us, but making experience authoritative–especially when it empowers broad assumptions and animosity toward others–is deeply deceptive.

Jen Wilkin guest blogs at Christianity Today and explains why it's important what we call our Bible classes. Stop calling everything a Bible Study.
Churches have gradually shifted away from offering basic Bible study in favor of studies that are topical or devotional, adopting formats that more closely resemble a book club discussion than a class that teaches Scripture.

Rebekah Womble at Wise in His Eyes reviews Ann Voskamp's The Broken Way. She insightfully poses the question that the unusual language Voskamp is known for employing may serve a darker purpose than simply poetic (or eccentric) - deliberate biblical confusion and intentional misdirection of the sheep.
The most frightening thought I had while reading was that even an unbeliever could agree with the vast majority of the book. Voskamp’s claims about God, love, suffering, and helping humanity are not far off from those made by any theist who seeks after “world peace” and mankind’s happiness. are I propose that this ambiguity and pretty, poetic language on Voskamp’s part is purposeful? I can’t pretend to guess at her intentions, but she must answer to the way she misguides her readers into unbiblical, mystical, man-centered beliefs.

Many of us are tired of social media, for a variety of reasons. One thing I've noticed personally is that I am weary of being told what to do every time I scan my Facebook wall or skim my Twitter feed. Just note the plethora of tweets or statuses that say 'You must...' and you'll know what I mean. You must vote for this guy, you must not vote for her, you must pray, you must stop being undiscerning, you must use baking soda to clean your counters, you must retweet this meme ... Oy. Even though the advice is usually good, please stop telling me what to do, Social Media. I'm off to read a book instead.

Another wearisome thing is being told what to care about all the time. We must speak out on this social issue, donate to that social issue, pray for social injustice over there, get active about the social injustice over here. Adam Parker has some good ideas in A Just Silence on why it is good to wait before speaking, or sometimes, it's best not to speak up at all.
The insistence of many that all of us need to continually speak out about almost every social issue and make official statements of sympathy or refutation in the court of public opinion--when, in fact, the courts that God has established have not had a chance to run their due course--is, quite frankly, wearing me out. I suspect I'm not alone.

Joel C. Rosenberg has some observations about the immediately warming relations between the infant Presidency of Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and compares to the relations between the two nations during Obama years.
Night and day: President Trump warmly welcomes Israel’s leader & the contrast with the Obama years couldn’t be more vivid. (My observations on the “two-state solution” & other major issues the two leaders discussed.)


After an event toward one had anticipated, worked, struggled, there is often a let-down afterward. Post-partum depression, post-traumatic stress, even post-wedding day blues all demonstrate that while we work toward ascending some great height and labor in love toward a cherished goal, there often comes an anticlimax when it's over. The same is often true for pastors after a sermon. Sunday afternoon and especially Mondays can be tough for your pastor. Here, Richard Caldwell at The Expositor's Blog has some thoughts on Post-Sermon Discouragement. What's a pastor to do when he feels that he's laid an egg?


Kirsten at Point to a Purpose has some thoughts on washing feet, sacrificial love on our knees for others. Anytime I wonder how to love my enemy as Matthew 5:44 says, I think of Jesus lovingly washing Judas' feet on the night Judas goes out to commit the most heinous act in the universe. Convicting.
And even in spite of knowing what Judas was going to do, Jesus was on his knees, washing Judas' feet and loved him anyway. Showed him kindness anyway.
Courtney Reissig at Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood wonders, Have we made too much of submission? (Yes, and no...)
Submission is often seen as a women’s issue. It’s the wife’s role in marriage, we say. And it does pertain to women in the covenant of marriage (I should know. I wrote an entire chapter on it in my book). But it’s not just a women’s issue. Whenever submission in marriage is brought up in Scripture it is always done within a larger conversation about submission for everyone.


Broken-hearted? Crushed in Spirit? Here are some thoughts from Growing Christian Resources showing How God Works In The Lives Of The Broken-Hearted And Crushed In Spirit,
We in American Christianity think it is our heritage to be free from difficulties. When trouble comes, we begin to wonder whether God still loves us or not. We can be doing exactly what He tells us in His Word, be in the center of his will so-to-speak, and yet, find the dryness, crushing weight of circumstances crack us on the inside. In those moments, we ask God: "what is going on?"

Beggar's Daughter reveals that she does not pray for her future husband, and why:
When I speak at college or high school events, sometimes I’ll get asked about the practice of praying for my future husband. More and more I see it addressed on other blogs and by other speakers on the issue. I used to do this, (and write him as well!) but I don’t anymore, nor do I encourage young women to.

David Murray at HeadHeartHand blog asks Are you a deep worker or a shallow worker? (I understnd that the busy pace of life often prevents the time necessary to devote to deep-thought work, but try. Here's why)
It’s what’s necessary not only to wring every last drop of value our of your current intellectual capacity, but it also creates the state of mental strain that is necessary to improve intellectual abilities. ... This contrasts sharply with most modern knowledge workers whose use of digital devices has fragmented their attention span into slivers. Instead they are pre-occupied with “Shallow Work” which Newport defines as...

To that same end, Erik Raymond also asks the question, Are You Suffocating Your Creativity? Oftentimes we stultify our creativity by reducing free time that cuts out time to imagine, wonder, think. Don't.
One such area involves free time to simply think. This is open time when we can allow our minds to wander a bit and latch onto things that we may not normally have the opportunity to think through. I believe this free space is vital and increasingly being diminished. It’s been crowded out by the pace of life; some of this is our fault, and some of it is simply the result of living in our age.

Thank you for reading!

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I passed by the field of a sluggard,
by the vineyard of a man lacking sense,
and behold, it was all overgrown with thorns;
the ground was covered with nettles,
and its stone wall was broken down.
Then I saw and considered it;
I looked and received instruction.
A little sleep, a little slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest,
and poverty will come upon you like a robber,
and want like an armed man.
Proverbs 24:30-34

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