Archives For freedom

America, Meet the World

March 28, 2016

Hello America. Meet the Rest of the World.

Note; This is not a political post but one of identification.

The closer we get to the election in the United States, the more comments, eye rolling, and jokes I am hearing as an American living overseas.

My journey as an American in missions has spanned over 25 years. When I began, everyone loved and warmly welcomed Americans. I can remember being in the Philippines and everyone shouted, “Hey Joe” at me, referring to G.I. Joe. It was with warmth and not derision.

The looks of disbelief started with the war in the Balkans and increased with the invasion of Iraq.

Upon moving to South Africa under Bush II, I often wished I could change my accent. Things improved remarkably over the last eight years under Obama. His African roots may have had something to do with this.

The End of Me

December 16, 2015

“Finish the sentence, “Jesus became real when….”

Often our walk with the Lord is relegated to an afterthought when life is good. It takes a tragedy, a bad medical prognosis, or news of an impending crisis to force us to our knees.

It is precisely during those times when Jesus becomes a more realized presence in our hearts and lives.

I’ve recently seen some friends who nearly lost a newborn express this sentiment saying, “I  can say this was a time of depth with my God that I did not know existed.”

This sentiment perfectly illustrates the premise of this book.

“Jesus became real when I came to the end of me.”

I was asked to review Kyle Idleman’s new book, The End of Me: Where Real Life in the Upside-Down Ways of Jesus Begins.

I had read and enjoyed Jefferson Bethke’s book Jesus > Religion: Why He Is So Much Better Than Trying Harder, Doing More, and Being Good Enough.

When I was given a chance to review his new book, It’s Not What You Think: Why Christianity Is About So Much More Than Going to Heaven When You Die, I jumped at the chance.

I was not disappointed.

Bethke takes on many aspects of Christianity in which we have some misunderstandings. Included in this are:

  • Christianity is more than going to heaven
  • The Temple is not a building
  • The Sabbath is not an outdated set of rules
  • The kingdom is not in the sky
    and much, much more.

Bethke hit on so many things I’ve been pondering in my own life. This book became a conversation for me with a fellow traveler.

Who are You?

October 21, 2015

Whether it is our job, school, or even in church; we are all familiar with working hard in order to receive approval.

This is the way life works, but grace and Christianity are meant to be different.

“God pronounces believers righteous at the beginning of the course, not the end of it…it cannot be on the basis of works they have not yet done” FF Bruce

Let’s not just talk about this, lets see it in Bible; even in the life of Jesus

Luke 3:21-22 tells us the story of Jesus’ baptism. He had not begun his ministry. But God’s feelings for him were not based on what He did but who he was.

“You are my Beloved Son with whom I am well pleased”

When we receive Jesus, we are a new creation; receiving a new identity.

Gospel Versus Religion

October 6, 2015

I’m teaching Galatians this week in Cape Town. In my preparation, I came across a comparison floating around the internet of the gospel versus religion by Tim Keller.

I thought it was worth sharing with you all here at NoSuperHeroes.com.

It is worth chewing on, searching our hearts for the subtle differences which can creep into our lives.

Enjoy!

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Below is a very insightful comparison between “religion” and “the gospel” drawn from the sermons of Tim Keller (Senior Pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in Manhattan). Tim does a remarkable job of probing hearts and revealing how easily we slip into self-dependence mode. As I’ve been saying each Sunday, real slavery according to the Bible is self-reliance. So, read the comparison list below with humility and care. It will do your soul good. 

RELIGION: I obey-therefore I’m accepted.

THE GOSPEL: I’m accepted-therefore I obey.