Lenten devotional

The Fogster has been swamped this month but does plan to post something soon. In the meantime, a friend shared this with me, so let me share this with you!


May it bless you during this Lenten season!



Why are christians so squirrely about...

mental illness?

I have tried to understand this, but just dont get it. I guess for me, i view mental illness as something along the line of diabetes. Sometimes you're born with it and sometimes life and life choices curse you with it. Either way, its an illness and there's treatment. We dont look down or fear people with diabetes, we simply make sure we got sugar free snacks. Why cant we do the same for the mentally ill? Make sure they take their meds, keep them out of situations that upset them and practice grace for the days they freak out.

Sure there's the issue of possession and healing, and all that spiritual stuff. And can it happen...sure? But lets be honest, those cases, esp in the West are rare. Of course this could get into dicey theological conversations about theodicy and suffering, i'll save that for another time. But i guess i figure that the brain is flesh too and that means it's also susceptible to illness too. So why should we be surprised when peoples brains malfunction?

What are your thoughts?


Kids and Church...

The Fogster ran across this article about children and their impact on marriage the other day. Then there's the octuplet mess... don't even get me started on that! But all this talk of babies and family got me thinking about kids and church and the high dropout rate once they leave the nest.

Having knocked around a few churches and now watching friends kids going through sunday school programs, i find myself unsatisfied.

It seems that we are very good at teaching kids that Jesus loves them (this they know!) Most kids know the bible stories (edited for parental approval) But no sense of the saints that went before. If these kids go to non-denom churches, then they dont even know who Martin Luther was! So they get into college and start reading, and asking questions, and uh oh... Those silly sunday school songs just aren't enough to sustain a more mature faith.

I think we should start petitioning the suppliers of sunday school materials for more in depth content. I think we should start sending sunday school teachers to seminary... or at least a somewhat watered down version. Most cant even tell you the difference between Calvin and Luther and why dispensationalism is a 20th century heresy that needs to stop!After all why should the catholics and anglicans have all the cool church history sunday school classes!

The reality is that we cant have community if we dont have history.Your church and theology were not formed in a vacuum. Jesus saves but your community breathes! What got us here? Is a rosary a bad thing? Are all christians who lived before luther/calvin/wesley condemned to hell?Instead of preaching to our kids abstinence and purity and other worthless time wasters, why not teach them the history of the church and have them plow through Augustine? Lets talk about Hosea and Tamar and just what was Ruth doing in Boaz's threshing floor? Churches should take the lead and teach about how we got the bible and what does it mean that there were different canons until a few key councils hundreds of years later?! Also what should we do with the pseudopigraphia? (try saying that ten times with your tongue twisted!).

Finally, we can "teach the bible" all we want, but if its not lived in the circle of family and community, then sunday school is a waste. But it appears to me that adults and kids are currently living in spiritual/historical amnesia and have forgotten the martyrs who died to get us here. And that is a great shame...