If you fundamentally identify yourself as being in Christ—as opposed to all the other options for self-identification—you will regularly respond differently than those who closely identify with the world’s lesser alternatives. Let me offer some examples of responses that might proceed from people who view themselves fundamentally as “in” a lesser alternative rather than viewing … Continue reading How Do You Identify?
Here’s a thought experiment. Suppose that you possessed a magic ball from which dangled a tiny magic thread. Furthermore, suppose that when you tugged on that magic thread, you could skip to a later time in your life. If you tugged a little on the thread, little time would pass; if you tugged a lot, … Continue reading Let’s Just Get Through This
How can you identify that you have a problem with pride? Following are 14 diagnostic questions that I recently adapted from a set of “rules” (advice) written by 17th-century clergyman Jeremy Taylor to help Christians grow in humility. Personally, I have returned a dozen or more times to Taylor’s advice over the past 25 years, … Continue reading Diagnosing Pride: A Checklist
“We’ve just got to hold on until the vaccine comes out.” Some people I know are simply “gritting out” life because they have heard that in a few months a vaccine will be ready to protect everyone from Covid-19. They have heard about many dozens of clinical trials currently underway, and believe that at least … Continue reading Our Hope is in Christ, Not in a Vaccine
We are living in a time characterized by difficult decision-making. Some of those decisions are in gray areas. Whether deciding about posting a particular comment on social media, choosing how to protest an action we count unjust, or even pondering whether to meet a friend for coffee at an indoor coffee bar, many of us … Continue reading How to Decide in the Gray Areas
This week citizens of the United States are pondering once again what it means to be American. Personally, I am deeply grateful that God permitted me to grow up in this incredibly blessed nation. Some people I know, though, act like they are first Americans and only second Christians. That’s a problem. At the opposite … Continue reading America First? Reject America? Early Christians Offer a Third Way
Sometimes we need to spiritually step outside of our historical and cultural setting to adequately engage the demands of our own cultural moment. To this end, I offer you the earliest Christian prayer after the time of the New Testament, 1 Clement 59.3-61.3. 1 Clement is a lengthy letter written by the church in Rome to … Continue reading An Ancient Prayer to Help Us Pray into Our Cultural Moment
After two and a half months of living with Coronavirus fear and frustration, followed by a horrific image of a man with his neck pinned to the ground as his life is violently taken away from him, followed by wave after wave of protests—many peaceful, some violent—do you find yourself wondering what God requires of … Continue reading What Does God Require of Me in this Moment?
One year ago, my former graduate professor and then colleague for the past 18 years shared an insightful and wise message at Talbot School of Theology’s baccalaureate service about staying faithful to Jesus after graduation. Sean McDowell summarized the main points of Dr. Wilkins’s address at his blog, and I offer this summary to the … Continue reading Staying Faithful to Jesus after Graduation: Some Sage Advice from Michael Wilkins
Do Christians have to obey their governmental leaders when such leaders issue specific declarations about: 1) where you can and cannot go, 2) what you should wear on your face, and 3) how far away you should stay from other people? What if you don’t agree that such directives make sense? The short answer is … Continue reading Civil Disobedience in an Age of Coronavirus