"The Preacher sought
to find delightful words
and to write
words of truth
Last weekend I went to Disney with my in-laws and ended up going on several shopping sprees, one of which was a serendipitous pop into a book store in an outlet mall on the way from a leather goods store that smelled like Bonanza to the Nike outlet (which, incidentally, doesn’t smell like Bonanza at all).
Call me Icarus. My God-given name is Adam, and what’s unfortunate is I’ve always lived up to that name. The miracle came when God broke my rebellion and named me Christian, but when I began to suffer, the miracle seemed like wishful thinking.
The mind is a power for great good and great evil, and it is our obligation to master it, to teach it the way it should go, otherwise it will lead us astray; and the main way to train and lead the mind is through developing and memorizing creeds.
We Bible readers often like to make fun of Israel because they are so pathetic. They’re easy to make fun of. But sometimes it hits a little too close to home.
I just had to look at the ground. The lady in front of me was wearing knee-high black leather boots that had a little metal tag on the back with fine print that read “The Frye Company” and I thought how nice they were, and then I thought how Haddie will never wear those.
I’ve been having this debate with myself for a while about skeptics. If you spend any time at all reading and listening to skeptics, you’ve probably asked yourself the same question I keep asking myself. What makes them so desperate and earnest and, I guess, alive?
We Americans don’t gather around the fire and hear grandpa tell us our story anymore and that makes us feel “free” to create our own. But with that freedom comes ignorance and confusion. We’ve forgotten our True story, and it’s my constant passion to call people to the fire to hear the way things really are.
The sun rises, the sun falls: waves roll in and out with the tide. Heat comes in Summer and cold in Winter, the wind chilling the earth. We know the patterns of life, and we even expect them to flow, but sometimes they don’t—sometimes they get stuck.
2015 was the first year for AdamSetser.com and my push to publish something regularly. I’ve had a hard time figuring out what writing means and how I am to go about doing it, and that has led me into some really dark places. But before we get there, let’s recap.
When I was young I used to pray for God to rescue me from the boredom of doing my devotions. All those Thees and Thous and henceforths (I grew up on the KJV) was like pouring water on the tiny flame of my faith. So I lowered my shouldered and repeated the words fake it ‘till you make it, fake it ‘till you make it.
I know that airplanes make men fly—I guess I've always known that—but I'm just now realizing how significant that is....
I think it’s ironic that God made King Nebuchadnezzar an animal for a while to teach him how to be a better human (read: how to be able to control the distinctly human gifts of consciousness and free will), and yet many in society today just want to become like animals...
Art gets a bad rap, and it's truly misunderstood in our generation, but losing Art is like losing our souls. We need it more than you may think.
The books of Samuel tell a disastrous story about two kings of Israel (Saul and David) whose struggles define the trajectory of a nation. I think David is less the hero we think he is and more of a broken man, struggling to find his place in relation to the Sovereignty of God. Something we can all identify with, no doubt.
It's popular for chronically ill people to lash out at happy people for being so, well, happy. I've been guilty of that in the past, but now I just try to help others see what they don't see. If there's anything good from pain it's perspective. So here, I give some of mine. Maybe you'll benefit.
The only way to understand the Bible is in its context. We have to get the proper storyline before we parachute into texts and try to make meaning from them. Abner Chou powerfully gives that context--the entire Biblical storyline--in what is less than a 15-minute read.
Jack Lewis is the author of Narnia and lots of philosophical books which have had incalculable impact on modern Christianity. Lewis had darkness in his life which few know about, but it's that darkness that God used to shape him to create such power and beauty.
“We have got to get to the place, brothers and sisters, where we just…shut up….We need to sit down and listen to the One who created us and who has redeemed us tell us the way it is. We need to be drawn outside ourselves. Faith comes by hearing, not by looking within…”
Over the next few weeks I will be posting the lecture notes from a class Dr. Chou teaches at The Master’s College on the book of Job. I’ve found the lectures extremely helpful, so I’m going back through them and copying down the relevant notes. I will publish one lecture per day on the blog, with each lecture being about 1,000 words. That should be a great 5 minute “devotional” for you as we go through the 34-ish lectures.
Spotify and other online music services lets us stream infinite music. And while this is great, it comes with baggage, especially for Christians who must navigate the "sacred-secular" divide. I think there is a better way of utilizing music and its purposes in our lives, and it doesn't have to do with more "praise" songs.
Incredibly wise words from Harold Best in a 7-page letter to a young artist on art, authenticity, fame, and community.
And Christians are the worst. We come to church and almost *expect* to be bored by the sermon, the Biblical text, and the music--and the amazing thing is, only a select few see through the fabricated "programs" of religion and into the deep sense of boredom those programs and events are meant to cover up.