Growing Kids Who Embrace The Christian Faith

Growing Kids Who Embrace The Christian Faith

As Advent goes, we get Jesus in a manger and Mary pondering these things in her heart. And the next thing we know, Christmas is put away for next year and Jesus is thirty years old being baptized in the Jordan. From baby to grown man in a week of biblical texts.

As you’re taking down the tree and lights and looking ahead to a new year, once again consider Jesus. Luke 2:21-52 invites us to slow down and look into the Jewish world of religious ceremony and observance of the law—practices that began to form the young boy Jesus. Luke writes about circumcision, purification, dedication, naming, consecration, and ceremonial festivals. All of these rituals are packed into one text. Jesus grew up in the context of religious practices.

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What I’m Thankful For

What I’m Thankful For

I’m a list maker. It keeps me focused on what else needs to be done. I love crossing them off one at a time until there is nothing else needing my attention.

But the following list is not one I will ever be done with, nor am I crossing these off. It’s a list of things I’m thankful for in no particular order:

  • A faith that has held me when I couldn’t hold it
  • A God who is more stubborn than I am
  • Denise—she is self-explanatory
  • A family that works hard, plays hard, and gives much
  • Hilarious grandchildren
  • The chance to see the future unfold in the eyes of Trevecca students
  • The ability to write and enjoy books
  • Where I get to live
  • Driving a 10-year-old car past 250,000 miles so the university doesn’t have to buy me a new one
  • Three families whose large gifts have made Trevecca much better

That’s 10. I’ll stop there for now. I am a very rich man.


Make your own thankful list and post it in the comments. Don’t forget to download the free Scripture art of Psalm 136:6; you can find it here.

Happy Thanksgiving! May you and yours have a blessed holiday!

A Tale of Two Cities: Yesteryear and Exile

A Tale of Two Cities: Yesteryear and Exile

I’d like to invite you to come with me to a place where some of us have lived before and some of us, the younger ones, have only heard of. The name of the town is Yesteryear.

In Yesteryear:

  • Laws were rooted in the Judeo/Christian ethic.
  • Families were stable, and divorce was rare.
  • Living together unmarried was even rarer.
  • Our military was superior, crime was minimal, and poverty was held in check.
  • Terrorism was not on the radar.
  • Savings accounts were common.
  • Debt was manageable.
  • The economy was growing.

Have you ever lived in Yesteryear? Do you still live there?

My guess is, you’ve moved – or been moved – to a new place.

The name of this new place is actually found in the Bible.

It’s called Exile.

In Exile:

  • We have religious pluralism – lots of gods.
  • Law is rooted in personal rights instead of personal responsibilities.
  • A family is almost any assortment of humans.
  • Our massive military cannot stamp out tiny terrorist cells.
  • Crime has caused us to secure our cars, homes, credit cards, and identities.
  • Poverty has millions living on a government check.
  • Terrorism is a daily color-coded warning.
  • Companies have downsized, shut down, or gone overseas, and the people who own them make 200 times more than the people who work in them.

Exile. Is this where you live now?

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