Christianity at Odds in a “Post-Truth” World

The viewpoint of the world towards historical tenants of Christian faith is rapidly changing in its beliefs. Anger is rising. Anger toward Christian belief with its commonly held core fundamentals and values is exploding in a variety of forms. On social media, the anger is rampant and venomous. Not only that, but Christians are raging at other Christians. You don’t have to look far to see this social trend. People are very connected to their feelings and opinions.

I spent the evening reading a variety of comments directed against Christians and Christianity. Writers said comments like, the teaching of original sin is abusive. The Nones are quite vocal and take Christians to the task. They have strong feelings and opinions. Some rage against Christian beliefs. Sad to say, some Christians rage back. A quiet, reasoned approach is disregarded or attacked. People do not want reason or explanations. Ugliness is surfacing. All stripes are delivering their hateful vendettas. In the mix are Christians-turned-atheists, former evangelists, former pastors, former theologians, and former home-schooled adults with claims of being victims in their childhoods when raised in conservative, religious homes. They are celebrating their freedom. Sometimes I wonder what that freedom looks like, yet they are excited and pumped by their new, religion-free lives.

image

Practicing His Presence (SeedSource, Reprint edition 1973)

This delightful book is also known as The Practice of the Presence of God. I have read it in two versions. There are are dozens of translations and editions to choose from. Every few years I like to read Practicing His Presence. The book may be small, but it is powerful! Brother Lawrnce practiced abiding in Christ. ‘God alone’ was his practice in every facet of life. Brother Lawrence was a cook in a monastery during the seventeenth century. In his letters and conversations, two predominate themes rise to the surface: abandoning to God and doing all things for the love of God.

[Brother Lawrence] said that only faith, hope and love had to be nourished to become utterly dedicated to the will of God. All the rest was unimportant….all things are possible to him who believes, more to him who hopes, and still more to him who practices and goes on practicing these three virtues.” (E. M. Blaiklock)

What I’ve Learned about Thanksgiving

My Idahoan sister is getting the troupes together for Thanksgiving this year, here in California. I picked her up at the airport today. Three of my cousins and spouses with some of their grown children, my brother and his grown kids and their significant others, my folks, and my sister and her grown kids and son-in-law, and my other sister’s son, my nephew from Oregon and his family are all coming. It will be over thirty in number. I’m bringing the homemade pumpkin pie, homemade applesauce, a slow-baked ham, and who knows what else. Maybe a pecan pie. We’ll have lots of good food.

image

Thanksgiving dinner at my house last year. We’re ready to pray.

What I Learned from My Grandparents, Parents, & Children

I am thankful for family.

My Parents, late Grandparents, and my children mean the world to me. I am a blessed woman. My grandparents and parents, aunts and uncles, cousins and siblings collectively contributed to my life. You know when you are given a lot. I am in that category. Both sets of grandparents lived modest lives and they had similar values.

Family values are lived daily.

book-gratitude

Choosing Gratitude: Your Journey to Joy (Moody Publishers, 2011)

Just in time for Thanksgiving! This lovely book offers practical advice for getting on the bright side. The author encourages the reader with many short true stories of people who faced difficult circumstances but found a way to be grateful anyway. The very act of gratitude is life transforming. It is like putting a smile on instead of the frown you’ve been wearing. This book was recommended to me by a friend who was deeply touched by its message. After four decades of marriage, she was left by her husband. It was devastating. She did an Amazon search and found Choosing Gratitude. It was like a life-line. Soon she found herself anchoring her thoughts in gratitude. It took a lot of prayer and effort but when the dark thoughts came or the pity-party started, gratitude became her resource to chase the gloom and doom away. Gratitude is a choice. This is a spiritual book.

I’m Thankful for Friends

A Close Friend

I’m so thankful for friends. I’ve had some very good friends. Some friendships have been defined by trust and goodwill. I think of David and Jonathan. Theirs was a remarkable friendship especially considering Saul’s envy-turned-to-hatred of David. Jonathan was loyal in a remarkable way, doing all he could to protect his friend. Read 1 Samuel 20. That’s how it is with the best of friends.