I awoke this morning to a palpable depression in the energy around me. I didn’t need to interact with anyone to feel it. So many around me were sad, grieving the loss of someone…or something. Things weren’t any better when I went to class this afternoon. Our professor was so depressed he couldn’t teach, and so our class spent twenty-five minutes talking about the election.
As I sat observing and meditating on what I was seeing, I realized that people were literally feeling as though someone had died. Even my family snapped at me when I reminded them that I saw Trump’s victory coming back in August. (Please know that I didn’t care who won, but I know human nature enough to know well in advance who would. More on that another time.)
Continue reading The Trumpy Blues, and How to Cure Them
A few weeks back, I took the time to spell out a bit of what it looks like for men and women to cultivate faithfulness to God through our dating habits and practices. In that post, I articulated what God’s best for romantic relationships (as seen in Ephesians 5:22-33) implies for the way we, as the Church, ought to practice dating in our culture.
God’s best for romantic relationships puts the man in the role of pursuer, just as Christ pursued us, and an oft-missed subtlety of the biblical story is that Christ had in mind his marriage to the Church from the very beginning of his ministry. As Tim Keller notes in a sermon he preaches on the Wedding at Cana, when Mary comes to Jesus to tell him that they’ve run out of wine and Jesus responds with, “My hour has not come,” it’s a logical non-sequitor. It doesn’t make sense, unless we understand that like most people at weddings, Jesus is thinking about his wedding to us in that moment—and all that it was going to take to get there (the Cross). Thus, before Jesus’s ministry was really underway, he was thinking about his marriage to us—and that was the goal of his pursuit.
Continue reading Less than His Best
When you hear the word worship, what comes to mind? Do you picture a cantor and a hymnal? Or perhaps an organ? Maybe you picture a hearty Gospel choir, clapping and singing with such deep and resonant tones that heaven’s angels get a little jealous. Or perhaps it’s the sensation of heart-pounding drumbeats in a dimly lit room, interspersed with brightly-lit LEDs and the distorted melodies of an electric guitar.
Perhaps for you, worship has nothing to do with music. Perhaps for you, worship brings to mind dancing, painting with water colors, or finishing that two-thousand-foot vertical ascent, only to be robbed of your breath by the view.
In the modern Church, worship has come to mean a lot of things for a lot of people. There’s just one problem: of all the things worship has come to mean for so many, none of them come close to encompassing what worship means in the Bible.
So, what is worship?
Continue reading Worship: It’s Not What You Think