Showing posts from August, 2014

Dandelions, filthy rags, and the Gospel

I wrote this for the newsletter a few years back and recently came across it while in search of another article. I thought I'd share it here too. It is from May 2009.

This past week I decided that it was time to do something about the dandelions.  I wasn't very concerned about the ones in the yard, but the ones in the nicely designed area with beautiful flowers surrounded by wood chips were really starting to bother me.  So I got some weed killer and sprayed them.

I think I made them mad, because after a few days they hadn't died, but instead had multiplied!  I have to wonder, was it really herbicide or was it fertilizer that I sprayed on the weeds?

So it was time to remove them the old fashioned way.  I got out the dandelion removal tool and got to work.  Pretty soon Timmy came along and asked what I was doing.

"Pulling weeds," I responded.

Timmy looked puzzled.  "Those aren't weeds, those are mommy flowers."  And to Timmy, they are mommy flowers.…

Depression is Not Due to a Lack of Faith

There are a lot of false teachers in this world and there always have been.  One false teaching that Christians have always had to battle is the idea that once something comes to faith in Jesus, everything will go well for them.  There is an idea that as long as your faith is strong, God will give you health, wealth and happiness.  Even though Jesus told His disciples to "deny yourselves, take up your cross, and follow me," and Paul wasn't healed of the "thorn" in his flesh, but instead he was told "My grace is sufficient for you," there are still false teachers like Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyer who tell people that God's plan for them is physical and financial blessings in this life.

Physical afflictions are not God's way of punish us, but a result of the fall into sin.  However, they can be used by God for His good because when you are weak, you must look to Christ for strength, just as St. Paul did.  I think that most Christians understand t…

Starting Life Dead

"We never become really and genuinely our entire and honest selves until we are dead -- and not then until we have been dead years and years. People ought to start dead and then they would be honest so much earlier." 
-Mark Twain

Twain was on to something here.  Throughout our lifetimes we tend to try to cover up who we really are.  We put up fronts.  We play the part expected of us.  We struggle to be genuine for fear of offending someone, giving them a reason to dislike us, or sometimes just because it is the path of least resistance.

Then, after death, we can no longer control our reputation, we can no longer manage people.  Death does away with trying to win the approval of other people.  Often, its not until after a person has died that we truly find out about that person, through their diary, e-mail correspondences, or other things that have been left behind. 
But what if we could start off life, as Twain suggests, dead?  What if our identity wasn't bound up in the …