Christian Post Guest VoicesTweet
Guest authors provide news and commentary.
Posted 5/25/15 at 11:37 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
It’s no secret that my past was ridden with mental health issues—ones that kept me from wanting to live for much of my teenage life. I’m very vocal about this truth, and I will continue to be as along as my story may have an impact on others who need to hear it. And while I do believe today’s church is doing better at addressing the issue that is mental health, I believe there can be so much more done than what is currently taking place in regards to depression and anxiety. Let me explain.
I never tried to take my own life in my younger years, but I frequently found myself googling painless ways to commit suicide, and really had no remorse once finding what I was looking for. It was a sad state to be in. The reality is that my life was infected with the burden of depression and anxiety, and the only places I could find reliable information from were not churches in my local area. Why? Because mental illness wasn’t really talked about. FULL POST
Posted 5/25/15 at 11:27 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
The main reason I shy away from debating anyone about the Christian faith is that if I did a poor job–and knowing my limitations, I can almost guarantee that would be the case–I’d hate for spectators to believe Jesus was no more than my poor representation of Him.
The Truth is far greater than my understanding of it or my ability to articulate it.
It’s possible to lose a debate and still be right.
As a young pastor, I was sandbagged into a debate. A young man in his late teens told me how he had been dallying with the Jehovah Witnesses and that his parents were concerned. He wondered if he and his father could meet me in my office one evening to talk. I agreed.
They showed up that night, accompanied by two Jehovah Witnesses, men loaded for bear. They were itching for a fight and mistakenly thought I was ready to take them on.
Looking back, what I should have done was inform the father and son that I had not agreed to this situation and wish them a good night, and gone home. As it was, I meekly brought the four of them into our church conference room where we sat around a table and I became the sacrificial lamb. FULL POST
Posted 5/20/15 at 3:05 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
Girls, we have been bombarded with messages about what we are to believe about ourselves and the world around us. I don’t know about you, but I have questions. Let’s talk about the word “FEMINIST”…… am I one? I don’t know. I mean, I hear celebrities spouting off about being a feminist and how women should be equal with men, and I get so many mixed messages. Women that label themselves feminists say they want equality- they want to be treated just like men, but I don’t want that! I am a woman, thank God. I am special and set apart unique and different, far, far different from a man.
With that being said, the bottom line is, I don’t care what they say. I don’t care to be a feminist. I want to be a Proverbs 31 woman. I want to be a godly woman. I want to be a strong woman. I want to be the woman that God created me to be. How am I to do that? Here are 7 things I think strong, godly women have in common and what I strive for in my life. FULL POST
Posted 5/20/15 at 1:05 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
“Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for me will find it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his own soul? Or, what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:24-26)
What do you have to give up to serve the Lord? Well, for starters, you give up your sin and guilt, your anguish and your lostness. You give up your waywardness and fears, your selfishness and your pride. You give up being lord of your own life and master of all your own choices.
Paul called this “presenting your bodies as a living sacrifice” (Romans 12:1).
It’s a daily exercise, by the way. While we wish we could do a one-time-works-forever thing, it’s not to be. “I die daily,” said the apostle (I Corinthians 15:31). And so do we, if we get this right. FULL POST
Posted 5/19/15 at 11:38 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
We learned last week that William Zinnser has died. He was known primarily as the author of On Writing Well, a classic guide to composing non-fiction. It is a book that has meant a lot to me as I have attempted to mature as a writer. This weekend I breezed back through all my notes and highlights and found that the ideas that most impacted me can be distilled into 5 simple headings. I also found that the ideas are applicable not only to professional writers like Zinnser, but to anyone who wants to grow in communication skills. Here are 5 things Zinnser taught me:
There is really no such thing as that fabled “natural writer.” What actually distinguishes the good authors from the great ones is simply their diligence. Good authors humble themselves with the knowledge of how poor they are, and then they commit themselves to endless practice.
While Zinsser believes that writing is an act of ego (see below), he also calls for a kind of humility that manifests itself in ruthless editing. If he is known for anything, it is for his constant calls to cut the clutter that marks too much writing (my own included). FULL POST
Posted 5/19/15 at 11:07 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
Martin Luther King had a dream.
Toya Graham the Baltimore “Mom of the Year” has a dream too.
MLK had a dream for an America free of racism and intolerance, where a good education, stable employment and a fruitful life are possible for all.
Toya Graham has a dream for her son – and for all the sons and daughters of America. That dream is for a good education, stable employment and a fruitful life, free of prison or poverty.
It took great courage for MLK to put his dream into action. Many talked; MLK marched.
It took great courage for Toya Graham to do what she did for her son. Many parents talk; Toya Graham marched out and grabbed her son. FULL POST
Posted 5/19/15 at 10:55 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
Most of us do at some point or other. And because for women are sex drives are primarily in our heads, when we’re too tired to concentrate on sex, our bodies often don’t get in the game. And then sex doesn’t work well.
One interesting study I came across found that 25% of people reported being too tired to have sex.
That doesn’t surprise me, actually. In fact, I’m surprised it’s not higher. I remember when the children were little, and didn’t sleep, and I was so desperate to get at least 6 hours a night (even if it was broken up), that sex was far down on my priority list. It didn’t mean we weren’t intimate; it’s just that I was far more attuned to my need for sleep than I was my need for sex.
But as I wrote in To Love, Honor and Vacuum, exhaustion isn’t just about lack of sleep; it’s also about lack of downtime to recharge our batteries. It’s feeling like you’re working all the time–which is mentally exhausting, even if you’re not physically exhausted. FULL POST
Posted 5/19/15 at 10:43 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
“Then they came to Him bringing a paralytic, carried by four men. Since they were not able to bring him to Jesus because of the crowd, they removed the roof above where He was. And when they had broken through, they lowered the stretcher on which the paralytic was lying….”
A priest stands between God and the people. He is an intercessor before God on behalf of the people. He is a witness (whether teaching, preaching, or simply speaking) before the people on behalf of God.
The priest has two strong attachments: to the Lord Himself and to the people in his care.
The four men of this story demonstrate both: Their confidence in Jesus is what inspired them to go to all this trouble of getting their friend to Him; Their commitment to the friend drove them to do whatever it took to see that he had the full opportunity to be healed.
With one hand on the Lord and the other on the friend, both hands locked into steel grips, the “priest” refuses to turn loose of either. FULL POST
Posted 5/18/15 at 11:22 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
There are literally thousands of articles online about why the millennial generation is disillusioned with church, church culture and church politics. And while I applaud the attempt to wrap one’s head around the issue, I’ve noticed that most of the articles seem to be written by people who know nothing about the millennial generation. Weird.
I’ve talked with thousands of young-people over the years who have told me, “I’m just sick of church.” I’ve heard everything under the sun when it comes to one’s reasonings for leaving, and I believe many of them carry a lot of heavy truth. Here are some of them…
1. “It’s not authentic.”
2. “It’s too corporate.”
3. “I don’t like the political side.” FULL POST
Posted 5/18/15 at 9:25 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
“Son, your sins are forgiven you.”
Look how eager the Lord Jesus was to forgive sins. The man hadn’t even asked for such. No one had asked for forgiveness, for themselves or for the paralytic.
The Lord Jesus brought the subject up and unilaterally announced the man’s sins were gone. And the man lay there and took it.
It’s amazing, is what it is.
Forgiveness is in God’s DNA.
It’s the nature of God to forgive sins, much to the consternation of the enemy who keeps trying to brand God as a sin-inspector/catcher/treasurer. Moses had asked the Lord to “show me your glory.” God said, “I’ll show you my goodness.” (Exodus 33:18-19) We take this to mean that God’s goodness is one element of His glory, although far less than the full measure. In truth, Moses could no more stand to be shown the fullness of God’s glory than a housefly could hope to stand a half-mile from the sun and take it all its radiance without being fried to a crisp in the process. FULL POST