The Crossroads of Pride

4/14/2014Posted by Helene

 
I've been sitting at the crossroads of Nebuchadnezzar, the Pharaoh and the Pharisee.  

Pharaoh came to me from "Exodus," one of the books we're reviewing (coming up soon) from Pryor Convictions Media.  My 5 year old daughter and I are using it for homeschool Bible curriculum this term.  Nebuchadnezzar has been around for about a month as the our little church is reading through Daniel together.  And we read the story of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector in morning devos where we've been focused on prayer.

So what do you get if distill these three personalities?

Pride.

Pharaoh's pride forced him to challenge God again and again.  God determined to show  his ascendency over the gods of Egypt and Pharaoh does not want to see.  He begins by having his magicians, by their secret arts, recreate the miracles that God can do.

Active Submission

4/11/2014Posted by Melissa

 
My congregation is doing a marriage class on Sunday mornings.  One day, our teacher said something that impacted me a lot.  He told the husbands that if they want to understand how hard it is for their wives to submit to them, they only need to think about how hard it is for they themselves to submit to God.  I appreciated his comment right off because it made me feel better about my struggles with submission.  It's not just that I'm an outspoken shrew of a woman.  I'm human, and humans have a hard time with submitting.  As time went on, I began to see the importance of the parallel between our submission to our heavenly Father and to our earthly husbands.  

What image does the world have when they think of submission?  The picture is a passive one, anything from a woman sitting still with her hands meekly folded all the way to an all out doormat.

The Question of Suffering

4/9/2014Posted by Melissa

 
I love apologetics.  There, I said it.  I'm a big nerd, and reading defenses of my faith gives me a bit of a high.  Mere Christianity and The Case for Christ still rank as some of my favorite "Whatsoever" books.  I like to read debate transcripts between creationists and evolutionists.  However, the one "big question" that apologetics has a hard time answering is the problem of pain and suffering.  Oh, they take a stab at it, but all too frequently their treatises are so deeply philosophical as to be almost useless. Perhaps it is because the problem of pain is not one that apologetics should address.

People who ask "Why do bad things happen to good people" often ask for one of two reasons. They are either atheists who have no intention of ever believing in Christ, or they are people who are suffering a deep loss who are asking in anguish of soul.

The Shoulds

4/7/2014Posted by Helene

 
I am a girl of discipline.  I don't mean I am a disciplined person; in fact if there is a category of sins I have struggled with more than any other, it is those related to self-control.  I mean that I count on my daily disciplines to help me stay on track.  I need those external railings to keep me on the road of self-control.  I read my Bible, do devotionals with my girls, pray, worship etc in a rhythm of days and weeks that sustains and steadies me.  Not because I am strong but because I am weak.  I do them for the joy and when the joy fails me I do them because I should.

It's true.  I get the "shoulds."  I sometimes have to force myself to do things.  I'm not talking about laundry; the only time I don't have to FORCE myself to do laundry is lovely spring days when any excuse to linger by the open window will do.