Monthly Archives: June 2015
Almost everyone knows the saying and the song. “Que Sera, Sera (Whatever Will Be, Will Be)”, was introduced in 1956 in the Alfred Hitchcock film The Man Who Knew Too Much, starring Doris Day and James Stewart. It was also featured in the films Please Don’t Eat the Daisies, Heathers, and The Glass Bottom Boat. In looking into its origins one resource observes that the saying has no history in Spain, Italy, or France, and in fact is ungrammatical in all three! Continue reading
It was during the Easter break at University College that C. S. Lewis and his brother Warnie took a two day trip to visit Stonehedge, the prehistoric monument located in Wiltshire, England, about 8 miles north of Salisbury. From a letter to his father dated April 1925, Lewis describes in detail the sights, sounds, reflections, and emotions experienced by the two young men.
Then it happened. As they strolled together talking and enjoying the beauty of the day, they heard gunshots. Six years earlier Lewis had been in the front line trenches in France and not long after was wounded in the Battle of Arras and sent back to London to convalesce. The sound of the gunshots prompted Lewis to think back to that time and to reflect on the difference time makes. He writes, Continue reading
Has any question been asked more often than “Why?” It shows up in the beginning and end of the Bible. “The LORD said to Cain, ‘Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen?’” (Genesis 4:6). “But the angel said to me, ‘Why do you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman, and of the beast with seven heads and ten horns that carries her’” (Revelation 17:7). It was one of Jesus’s favorite questions, “And why are you anxious about clothing?” (Matthew 6:28); “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?” (Matthew 7:3); “And he said to them, ‘Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?’” (Matthew 8:26); “But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, ‘Why do you think evil in your hearts?’” (Matthew 9:4).
There is a good chance you asked the question this week. Maybe even today. Continue reading
It is probably one of the most familiar introductions. “Hi. My name is ______. I am an alcoholic.” While I’ve never struggled with alcohol (my equally strong struggles lie elsewhere), saying it for the first time must be a daunting experience.
By changing the condition we can all say it. “Hi. My name is ______. I am greedy . . . a gossip . . . lustful . . . a worrier . . . angry.” In other words, “I am a sinner.”
But as helpful as identifying the issue and admitting to it is, it is only a beginning. It serves as a healthy halfway point to where one wants to be. Continue reading
Every generation finds a new way to say the same thing. It’s been a long time (hopefully!) since you used any of these terms—Hip, Beatnick, Hype, Psychedelic, Bang for the Buck, Far Out, Flower Power, It’s your thang, Right on, and Power to the People—though the ideas still linger. They are just expressed differently.
Today people respond with (insert tone of voice) “Seriously?” for what used to be conveyed by “Reality Check” and “Get Real.” It’s meant to bring you up short, to cause you to stop and think about what you’re doing.
In his book Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis gives the reader something of a reality check concerning humility: Continue reading
I could be wrong on this one. It’s just an opinion.
Down through the years I’ve heard Job’s wife take a lot of heat for saying “Do you still hold fast your integrity? Curse God and die.” (Job 2:9). Here’s this poor guy who has lost everything: Oxen, sheep, camels, servants, and then the worst catastrophe of all, Continue reading
During my years as a Christian, a seismic transition has taken place regarding evangelism or sharing one’s faith. Years ago the primary tools were reason, logic, and evidence. The Christian message made sense, hung together, answered the fundamental questions regarding who we are, where we came from, what’s gone wrong, and what is the answer. A popular book title in those days was Evidence That Demands a Verdict.
But now the primary tool is a story. Proponents point to Jesus’ fondness for stories. Chapter after chapter the gospel writers record Jesus saying, “’What do you think? A man had two sons. And he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today’” (Matthew 21:28); “Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow” (Mark 4:3); “Or what woman, having ten silver coins, if she loses one coin” (Luke 15:8); “’For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate” (Luke 15:24).
This isn’t evidence that demands a verdict. It’s more along the lines of “If you have a minute, listen to this . . .” Continue reading
It’s a well-known saying, especially for those looking for work. “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” While not always the case, many people did get where they are today because someone who knew them put in a good word. A car dealership advertises “You got a guy” at their lot. The implication is you “know someone” (though you don’t) who will give you a deal as one friend to another.
Though it’s great to fill a position based on nothing more than a person’s skills and abilities, when you have a number of equally qualified candidates it’s only human to lean toward one you know best. Sometimes it is who you know. Continue reading
It can be discouraging, if not downright frustrating, to be around someone who is not only good at something but too good at it. Most of the time they don’t even realize it. To them it’s just natural.
I took a couple of years of New Testament Greek in Bible college. Learning languages did not (does not) come easy to me. But they evidently came easy to the girl who sat in the desk directly behind me. While I was trying to understand Tense, Voice, Mode, Person, and Number, she was filing her nails! To make matters worse, we had to correct each other’s quizzes and read aloud how many we got right and wrong. I’ll leave the rest to your imagination. Continue reading
Tell some people that men and women are different and they want to argue about equal pay, male privilege, and the oppression of women worldwide. Tell other people men and women are different and they are like, “Duh.”
It should go without saying that men and women are different, and frankly, I’m all for it. Irrespective of where you come down on any of the debatable issues, the differences and similarities of men and women should be discussed, celebrated, and enjoyed. Continue reading