Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Jesus (Secret Messages)

Not that long ago I was having a conversation with a friend of mine who I love dearly but he got a little upset with me. We were actually "at church" and I was leading a discussion for a Highschool youth group. We were discussing how Jesus would fit into today's culture and really talking about he might would not "fit in" that much at all. Somehow the conversation went towards politics and I allowed the students to move forward with their comments as I personally was surprised by their willingness to speak about what they "believed" to be the right stance on issues. Most of their comments started with "my parents say..." Or "my dad says..." And even "if this... Then my dad's business would..." And I was amazed at their insight but most of it seemed disconnected from Jesus (which is how the conversation got started).

My friend approached me afterwards and told me that he didn't appreciate me bringing up politics "in church" and has always been told that politics is something that you should leave out of "preaching". Church is a place to talk about God and people, not politicians. Well, I can say that those words have stuck with me since then but have never really rested well.

I have recently started reading "The Secret Message of Jesus" by Brian MaClaren and the first chapter is entitled The Political Message of Jesus and it does a great job of painting a picture of the political "parties" of Jesus day (which there were by the way). McLaren then talks through the gospels and how each of Jesus teachings put him in the same sphere as some parties and completely against others. Only to find the next time he is recorded he is speaking in opposition to a party he was earlier thought to have been uplifting.

His point in this is that Jesus did not dance around political issues. Infact he spoke straight to heart of all of them. He seemed to do this with no concern for who was supporting (voting) or opposing him. The only thing He was concerned with was speaking of a better way to live. The way we were created to live. He spoke knowing that what he spoke of was the only way to experience a better way of life (or you could call it God's Kingdom).

This may not make much sense since most likely you haven't read the book. All I am really trying to say is this... I am currently more less inspired than ever to be a part of a known political party. I love our country, I love our president (God does too), I love the people of Uganda, I love the poor, I love the rich (God does too), and I love the less fortunate, and I want to be able to love those of Muslim Terrorist groups (because I know God does too). I am compelled to follow in the steps of Jesus and love because I was first loved regardless of situation, circumstance, or political party.

So in light of my conversation with my friend (which has been long resolved between us)... I believe if we as the church treat the gospel as something that just tells us to be nice to our siblings and do good in school then we neuter the very message that sent Christ to the cross. His Gospel carried both political and social implications. You can't say I am a forgiven sinner and hate your brother who has wronged you and you can't say I was a blind man that sees and not offer food to one who is Hungry. If the good news that Christ spoke of causes us to cross over political lines then we can't be afraid of that as followers of Him. It is those crossed lines that both won the hearts of his followers and angered others to put him on a cross. If we are following, should we look any different?

If you've read this far... thoughts???

I am searching to find the way of Jesus... the real message of Jesus... May God continue to guide...

Love and Peace,


Saturday, March 18, 2006

Narnia Rap Battle

So I first saw this on my boy Jasen's Blog. If you liked the First Narnia Rap from SNL then you will love this.



Thursday, March 16, 2006

Super Bowl 41

We're on the Culpepper Train... The Miami Dolphins signed a new QB yesterday. The former Pro Bowler was my big hope for the Dolphins QB situation. Can't wait for next year. Time to get our roll on!!!

If you know me then you know tend to get passionate about some stuff. I want people to feel loved and accepted. I love my wife. Music somehow moves me in my soul. I know we have a tendency to misuse the word love, so I will just say this... my friends, I really, really, really, like good football. I am also a huge Miami Dolphins fan. Some of my best memories as a child are watching Dan Marino break passing records with my Dad. Me liking good football and liking the Dolphins, however, have not been good for each other over the past few years because the Dolphins haven't been, well, playing good football.

We all know I haven't been able to be too excited about Basketball as of late (Jasen Ashdown - do not comment here just because you are a Wake Forest Fan) because of the NCSU performances as of late. So, needless to say, sports have been hurting me something serious...

I believe this is changing... Good times are ahead!!! I welcome them. Daunte, get your roll on!!!

Much Love,