Can God Use A Broken Heart and Dysfunctional Family?

Can God Use A Broken Heart and Dysfunctional Family?

Feelings of hurt lead to feelings of inadequacy and, more often than we care to admit, become a barrier to faith in God.  The fact is that not only does God love you, but can work in and through a broken heart for glorious purposes.

I love my children.  But every time I look at some of my favourite photos of them it breaks my heart.  It pains me to know that I am their father because I feel that I am a bad father:  I get upset with my children when I have no reason to be upset with them; I don’t always answer their questions completely; I don’t always explain my rules; I make them do chores around the house; I don’t always let them have the lollies they ask for … what kind of a father am I anyway? :-)

Even as my family is dysfunctional in these ways, my own childhood was far worse.  And, I suspect, every house on my street contains a dysfunctional families, to one degree or another.

Anyone would be led to despair at such a thought.  What saddens me most is that some people take this thought a step further thinking that God will not draw close to such depraved and dysfunctional people.  For such as those, let me remind you that even among God’s family are found the broken hearts of dysfunctional people!

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Who Wouldn’t Want To Follow Jesus?

Who Wouldn’t Want To Follow Jesus?

Because Jesus died on a cross, we might think his life wasn’t worth imitating. But stop and think for a moment.  What about Jesus’ life wasn’t admirable?  Who wouldn’t want to follow Jesus?

This past weekend, I delivered two speeches on the subject of Christian lifestyle.  I was trying to explain —first to a group of university students on retreat; second to the adults of my congregation— what it is like, and why it is important, to live our life based on the belief that the good news about Jesus is the focal point for our lives.  In other words, what it means to live for Jesus —in other words, to follow Jesus.

Both speeches took as their starting point the Bible passage Mark 8:34-38.  There is recorded Jesus telling the crowd that to be his disciple one must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow him. These are, unquestionably confronting words and challenging words to live up to.

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Ten Irrefutable Proofs About Jesus

Ten Irrefutable Proofs About Jesus

The debate over whether we can prove God’s existence rages on, as evidenced by this post by Frank Viola, and the subsequent discussion in the Comments.

The following is a guest post written by The Rev. Dr. Gordon Moyes A.C. that, in my opinion, presents some very convincing “proofs” with which any open-minded seeker after Truth must contend.  *the original article can be found here.

One of the marks of contemporary intellectual pursuit is that we Westerners hold as absolute, nothing. Everything is relative, such only to how I feel about it. All authority systems are struck down or merely tolerated. The post-modernism of our era has left us without any authority or certainty. Belief is in everything or nothing. Those who stand for nothing, end up falling for anything.

I find [Christian] faith includes ten irrefutable proofs about Jesus. They are a good starting point for anyone interested in the [basis] of our faith.

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On the Question of Good and Evil

On the Question of Good and Evil

I have recently discovered Frank Viola and look forward to reading some of his books, especially Jesus: A Theography (with Leonard Sweet) and Pagan Christianity (with George Barna).

Having discovered Frank, then, I want to recommend to you an article he posted, in the wake of the mass murder in Newton, Connecticut, USA.  He wrote a much longer treatment of the subject, but I want to recommend to you instead his summary of that article into 7 points.  I think you’ll get the gist of what he was writing and be impressed with his treatment of the issue.

In the face of tragedy and evil, we all cry out for answers … this is natural.  And, of course, the question of God’s existence will come into play in such times because we would all like to know that someone, somewhere, is powerful enough to stop such tragedies.  So, the reasoning goes, if that someone, somewhere, didn’t stop the tragedy, either he/she/it doesn’t care, he/she/it isn’t so powerful, or he/she/it is not real.  Each of these conclusions only exacerbate our despair, yet the question remains: Where is God in all of this?

Read :: “7 Points About Resolving the Question of God & Evil” by Frank Viola

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To Dog Be The Glory

To Dog Be The Glory

Imagine the impact that would result if the people of God were brave enough to live the grace of God boldly in this chaotic and despairing world.

I was reminded recently of a story that could easily have become a terrible tragedy, but instead ended with a peaceful and unexpected miracle.

The Toronto Star newspaper reported that Mr. James Stanson, aged 43, drove from the east coast of Canada in a car loaded with guns and ammunition, intending to kill as many people in the city of Toronto as he could.1  But a last-minute encounter with a woman and her dogs in a lake-front park convinced him that Torontonians are nice.  He later told police that he was bent on a murderous rampage.

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