THIS SUNDAY, 10/31
- In light of Sunday being Halloween, I strongly considered the church singing The Monster Mash and Thriller. But, I decided against it.
- Oct. 31st, for the Christian, has tremendous significance. See below for why that day in history is important.
- This Sunday’s service will be different than most. The service will include the Lord’s Supper as well as an Ingathering related to our Debt Retirement Campaign, For the Kingdom.
The question is not only, “Was there strong Bible teaching?”, but also, “Was there strong Bible learning?” This week’s tip: Listening
Everyone knows that person who, when you try to have a conversation with them, they never stop talking. You can’t say a word – because you never get a chance.
When talking to God, prayer is as much listening as it is talking. Likewise, small-group teaching is as much listening as it is teaching.
As teachers, we tend to get into the rut of believing our job is to talk when it would behoove us to set aside time each week to listen to our class members.
In a teacher’s defense, many times no one in the class is confident enough to share openly. But, I’ve learned over the years to let the silence to its work. It’s in the silence that God’s children can finally hear his still, small whisper. Many times, after about ten seconds of silence, I’ve seen people begin to open up. It’s powerful.
And that’s where focused listening comes in. I’m not talking about listening in a sense that we’re already formulating a response while they’re sharing. But, just listening, taking in not only the words of the person, but their spirit, their joy and/or their pain.
Listening is a rare discipline today.
While Jesus was praying, Luke records God speaking to Jesus’ disciples in a thunderous voice, saying:
May we be good listeners.
It was on October 31, 1517, that Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the church door in Wittenberg. He’d had his fill of the corruption within the Church of the Holy Roman Empire. That said, October 31st is, by many people, referred to as “Reformation Day.”
Luther was merely one of the many courageous men who stood up to the manipulation, lies and half-truths of the church. Some were executed, while others, like Luther, became an outlaw, always avoiding imprisonment.
In honor of Reformation Day, allow me to link here one of my blogs related to Luther’s famous statement, “Be a sinner, and sin boldly.” You can read the blog here.
When I run across substantive articles in the news I like to pass them along to you.
Child sex trafficking is sick and demented. But, it’s huge business for those who are sick and demented.
This article I saw on KCBD offers some resources for help should you ever be confronted with this topic. Read the article here.
I shared this with my class on Daniel a couple of weeks ago for two reasons: (1) because the age of the wall dates back to 586 BC, which is the period of time in which Daniel is set, and (2) to remind them that, among the thousands of archaeological discoveries related to the Bible over the centuries, not a single one has contradicted Biblical history.
And that’s yet another reason to believe. Read the article here.
QUOTE of the WEEK
Everyone has a worldview whether they admit it or not.
A worldview is a moral filter/conviction through which we decide what is right and what is wrong; what is true and untrue. It informs and frames what we believe about ethics, religion, sexuality, the sanctity of life, politics and so on.
This is precisely why I often state I hold a “biblical worldview.”
In her outstanding book, Total Truth, author/professor, Nancy Pearcey, writes:
“Humans are inherently religious beings, created to be in a relationship with God – and if they reject God, they don’t stop being religious; they simply find some other ultimate principle upon which to base their lives…Faith is a universal human function, and if it is not directed toward God it will be directed toward something else.”
LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE: Halloween Edition
First, we have a series of photos. A “Haunted House” set up a still-shot camera to catch the reaction of people as they happen upon something that scares them half to death. These are my favorites. I laughed out loud.
And, a bonus…
SOUL FOOD: Paranormal Activity: What the Bible says about Ghosts & things that go “bump in the night”
I wrote this blog years ago, but am always asked to re-post it this time of year. Read the blog here.
Soli Deo Gloria, Nick