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BOOK REVIEW – Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem

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Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book about a (Really) Big Problem by Kevin DeYoung

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


This is a very short book and a quick read, but don't be deceived. Your toes will be stepped on! I think DeYoung does a great job of blending scientific research, biblical principles, and anecdotes to make his case.

I think we are all too busy for our own good. But I appreciate (and am attacked by) the fact that he points out: maybe it's not that we're too busy, maybe we're just busy with the wrong things. In today's world it's so easy to waste away our time on social media, YouTube, or Netflix and feel like we've actually accomplished something. We waste time at work scrolling through our Twitter feed and then we spend time at home catching up on work emails.

No matter what your walk of life - whether you're a stay-at-home parent, a CEO, a pastor, or a plumber - this book is bound to punch you in the gut but also offer hope. DeYoung addresses com…

Women Should Learn (and So Should Men)

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Our church is getting ready to make the "radical" move to incorporate female leaders in our ministries and worship assembly. I know, I know... you may be thinking It's 2020, and it's about time!

But for a lot of people this is one of the defining characteristics of what makes a church a "Church of Christ." We're the church that doesn't use instruments and doesn't allow women to lead. But that is slowly changing, and I do mean slowly.

Sure, some of the larger churches of Christ around the US have already started using instrumentation in their worship services and allowing the voices of women to be featured. But those are not the majority. It's still very rare for a church of our size and location (smaller, rural church) to make that kind of move.

So why did we do it? Why rock the boat?

We believe that it is the right thing to do in order to more fully become the Kingdom of God as those living in the New Creation. It's not a gimmick to at…

JESUS ASKED: You Don't Want To Leave, Too, Do You?

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There are people who hear my story and wonder, "How are you still in church? How are you still a Christian? Most people would have walked away and never looked back."

If you know my (and my wife's) story, then you know what I'm talking about. If not, that's not for today. Suffice it to say that there was a point in our lives when we were hurt by the people we looked up to the most. When we need them, our friends turned their backs on us and adults in the church talked crap about us. They made it painfully obvious that we weren't welcome.

It would have been so easy to give up. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if there were some of my friends who, seeing the way we were treated, walked away from the church knowing that we were just one more example of judgment and condemnation where there should have been mercy and grace.

But we didn't leave. We never left.

The reality is that people are leaving the church. They are walking out the doors and never comi…

Women of Faith

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TO LISTEN TO THE AUDIO OF THIS SERMON, CLICK HERE.
Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. 1 Corinthians 14:34-35
A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner. But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety. 1 Timothy 2:11-15 
Silence.
Quietness.
Humility.
Submission.
These are not simply rules of attitudes and behaviors to control women. These are virtues that are to be embraced by all God’s people.
Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what…

JESUS ASKED: Where Shall We Buy Bread for All These People?

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Did you know that there are only a few stories shared in all four Gospels? Mark, Matthew, and Luke have a ton of similarities, but very few stories make it into all four. The "Feeding of the 5,000" is one of them. If this story was important enough for all four gospel writers to include, then it's important enough for us to pay attention to.

Today I want to focus on John's account. (So far, all these questions occur in John's Gospel.) Let's just read it and then we'll look closely at the question Jesus asked.

     When Jesus looked up and saw a great crowd coming toward him, he said to Philip, “Where shall we buy bread for these people to eat?” He asked this only to test him, for he already had in mind what he was going to do.
     Philip answered him, “It would take more than half a year’s wages to buy enough bread for each one to have a bite!”
     Another of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, spoke up, “Here is a boy with five small barley loa…

JESUS ASKED: Do You Want To Get Well?

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Humans are funny creatures. One of our greatest traits is our ability to adapt to almost any set of circumstances. Humans have lived in some of the most extreme climates on the planet - deserts, frozen tundras, dense jungles, and southern Indiana. We can adapt and thrive in just about any kind of environment.

Just don't ask us to change.

It's really weird. We're super adaptive, but we resist change. We fight to the bitter end to make sure things stay exactly the same. Because we get comfortable. Adapting is doable but difficult. Staying the same takes very little mental or physical effort. We are strong and we adapt...but we would really rather not. We'd much prefer to take the path of least resistance, even if it's to our detriment.

Jesus was known for his miracles. Once word got around that he could heal people, the broken and diseased masses began making their way to him. He could heal virtually any disease or disability. That was even part of his own divinely …

JESUS ASKED: Will You Give Me a Drink?

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I find it fascinating that Jesus can take just about any kind of interaction and turn it into an in depth theological conversation that changes peoples' lives.

Jesus and his disciples were traveling from Judea in the south to Galilee in the north. The region of Samaria lay in between. Most "good Jews" would completely bypass Samaria, going many miles out of their way to avoid stepping foot in the region. But not Jesus. He takes his disciples straight through.

When they got near the town of Sychar, Jesus hung out by the well outside town while he sent his disciples to go find some food. (It's nice to see these disciples doing the tasks of lowly interns!) While Jesus is chilling by himself around noon, a woman came up to the well to draw water. Instantly, this sends all kinds of messages about what kind of woman she is. Most women in the town would have gone out together early in the day when it was cooler, and they would help each other out and socialize for a while.…

JESUS ASKED: Why Do You Involve Me?

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There's an interesting little exchange between Jesus and his mother which led up to his first recorded miracle in the Gospel of John:

On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”
“Woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My hour has not yet come.”
     His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”
     Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.
     Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.
     Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”
     They did so, and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water kn…

JESUS ASKED: What Do You Want?

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Who were your favorite teachers? Odds are they weren't the ones who simply lectured and acted like they knew all the answers. The best teachers are those who ask the best questions.

As I read through the gospels I'm amazed by the questions that Jesus asked. In fact, if you keep reading in Luke 2 after the birth story, the next time we see Jesus is as a 12 year old boy. He ditches his family in Jerusalem after a festival and spends three days alone in the city. Surprisingly, his parents find him in the Temple carrying an in depth conversation/debate with the religious leaders. They were amazed by his understanding that was revealed in the questions he asked.

People asked Jesus questions all the time. But let's take a look at some of the questions Jesus asked of others. They are the same questions, I believe, that we are asked today.

Let's begin in John 1. Check out this story:
The next day John was there again with two of his disciples. When he saw Jesus passing by, he…

My UPDATED Definitively Subjective Star Wars Movie Rankings

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It's an amazing time to be a nerd.

I've found myself thinking and saying that a lot over the last several years. I've always been a nerd - Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Monty Python, DC, Marvel, and everything in between.

I remember sitting in elementary school having Star Wars trivia contests with my friends. Who was Luke's childhood best friend? What was the name of the droid Uncle Owen almost bought instead of R2-D2? That sort of thing.

When I was home sick as a kid, I wore out our Star Wars trilogy VHS tapes.

And yes, Han shot first.

Is every Star Wars movie a masterpiece? No, not by a long shot. But each movie has something I can really appreciate for what it's worth. I've also been getting into the new canon books (especially the audiobooks - those things have incredible production value) and the TV series on Disney+ (The Mandalorian, Clone Wars, Rebels, and Resistance). I appreciate how they are trying to flesh out the fuller story within …