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Guest authors provide news and commentary.
Posted 4/16/13 at 11:29 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
On this, the 50th anniversary of the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famous Letter from a Birmingham Jail, his niece, dr. Alveda King, Director of African American Outreach for Priests for Life, says her uncle’s letter applies just as profoundly today to abortion as it did in 1963 to segregation.
Alveda is joined by Father Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life who today said: "Today, that letter still speaks. Just as it spoke in his day on behalf of those who suffered the violence of segregation, so now it speaks for those who suffer the violence of abortion."
Alveda adds:,“If Uncle M.L. were alive today, he would surely include the 21st century womb babies and their mothers in his 'Letter from a Birmingham Jail.' The atrocity of abortion in America has killed millions of human babies who are often considered to be property, chattels, and less than human.
"In his 1963 letter, he wrote that segregation ‘ends up relegating persons to the status of things.’ Change ‘segregation’ to ‘abortion’ and you have the year 2013.
“Jim Crow laws gave us the continuing dehumanization of African Americans, beatings, lynchings, and the Ku Klux Klan. Roe v. Wade has given us the dehumanization of unborn and, now, born babies, skull crushings, ‘spine snippings. Consider Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia; the Planned Parenthood Chicago facility that killed Tonya Reaves; and all of the other hundreds of abortion providers and Planned Parenthood officials who can’t say whether fully born babies who survive abortions should be helped to live. FULL POST
Posted 4/12/13 at 5:03 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
By Stephen Altrogge
Your church has one or more ghettos. My church has multiple ghettos. I’m not talking about “bad side of the tracks”, low rider, chrome rims, “pop a cap in him!” ghettos. Yeah, I know you think you’re pretty gangsta as you listen to Lecrae while driving your Toyota Camry to your computer programming job, but I’m not talking about gangsta ghettos. I’m talking about nice, suburban, unthreatening ghettos. The ghetto of homeschooling. The ghetto of organic eating. The ghetto of not vaccinating your kids. The ghetto of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Notice that I’m talking about morally neutral things, not things the Bible calls sin.
A ghetto, as I’m defining it, is simply a group that you’re either in, or you’re not. My church has many homeschooling families. That is a ghetto. It’s not necessarily good or bad. My church is primarily caucasian. That’s a ghetto. Again, not necessarily good or bad. My church has many families that adhere to very strict diets. My church has many women that breast feed their children. My church has many men that hunt. You get the point. FULL POST
Posted 4/12/13 at 3:09 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices |
By Ron Edmondson
Over the last few days, my Internet world has been inundated with news about the death of Rick Warren’s son Matthew. When I got the word Saturday, my heart surely skipped a beat. I have grown to love Rick. I don’t know him well, but I have had the privilege of being with him numerous times and found him to be genuine and deeply concerned for the well being of anyone who he meets. He’s definitely a pastor’s pastor.
I debated sharing this story. I don’t want to appear to sensationalize the issue. It’s getting enough attention. After reading numerous negative stories about Rick, his family, and Matthew (I honestly don’t know why anyone would choose a time like this to personally attack someone), I asked permission from one of the leaders at Saddleback to share my experience with Rick concerning his son Matthew.
A couple years ago, I had the awesome experience of visiting the inner workings of Saddleback Church. I was asked, along with a couple other pastors, to help them think through some of their online presence ministering to pastors. (One way Rick wants to end his ministry is by using his influence to bless other pastors. They have made Pastors.com a tremendous free resource.) It was an incredible trip. I had been to Saddleback, but on this trip, I got the complete behind the scenes tour. I was in the green room before Rick spoke. I got to hang out many from their staff. I left even more impressed with the depth of their ministry. Any rumor or thought someone has that they are a “watered-down” Bible teaching church is clearly wrong. I can vouch for that. FULL POST
Posted 4/11/13 at 5:34 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
By Joe McKeever
"Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices…." (Colossians 3:9)
Got time for a lawyer story?
The lawyer told it at an early morning coffee time some of us were enjoying. Without permission to use his name, the story will remain anonymous for the time being. He said it happened in his office.
They sat in the lawyer’s office–the accused thief, his mama and his grandmama. The lawyer said, “The police say you burglarized that store.”
“I didn’t do it! I wasn’t even there! I was someplace else!” the accused shouted. At that, the mama and grandmama turned to each other and echoed softly but firmly, “He didn’t do it. He wasn’t even there. He was someplace else.”
The lawyer said, “The police have two fellows in custody who say you were their accomplice. They can identify you.”
“They’re lying! I didn’t do it! I wasn’t even there! I was someplace else!”
Once again, the mama and grandmother looked at each other and said, “They’re lying. He didn’t do it. He wasn’t there. He was someplace else.” FULL POST
Posted 4/11/13 at 4:02 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices |
By Stephen Altrogge
Admit it: it’s so much easier to criticize people than encourage people. There’s just so much fodder for criticism! We’re all sinners, and we regularly sin against one another. Every day we sin against our families, coworkers, friends, etc. And then there are those annoying habits we all have. Your husband can’t seem to remember to put his towel away after he takes a shower (guilty!). Your wife is a chronic key loser. Your kids are constantly breaking your valuable stuff. And the guy in the cubicle next to you is constantly clearing his sinuses in a loud, wood chipper-like, fashion. Because we are constantly interacting with frail, human, silly sinners, it’s so easy to be a constant critic.
Because it is so easy to criticize, we must take extra effort to encourage, build up, and affirm other believers (I’m preaching to myself here). We must go the extra mile to encourage and refresh others. We must work hard to overwhelm our relationships with encouragement. If our relationships become overrun with criticism they can quickly become unfruitful. In his helpful book, Practicing Affirmation, Sam Crabtree says:
But without affirmation, well-fed, well-inoculated, well-instructed children [or friends, spouses, coworkers, etc.] may tune out their parents and their well-intended instruction—especially their instruction. FULL POST
Posted 4/9/13 at 10:46 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
By Dr. Ken Dignan
My heart goes out to Pastor Rick Warren and his family at the loss of his 27 year old son to death by suicide. I can relate to the Warrens in that my family and I lost our son Ryan, at 20 years of age 10 years ago. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 tells us to comfort others with whom we can empathize with “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”
Losing a loved one to suicide is a most difficult kind of grief. Losing any child or young person is hard and tragic for anyone. No parent envisions losing a child in death before them. And if it happens there really isn’t any kind of true closure. One bears the hurt and loss the rest of their life. Yes we trust God to help us go on but we do so as a survivor must cope each day, one at a time. We depend on God’s grace and strength to remember the good times we had with our loved one and thank God for whatever time we did have them.
Add to that, losing a loved one to suicide complicates the grief in that you must fight through all the stigmas associated with it. Suicide is often misunderstood and has a history of shame around it. For many years the church taught and believed if anyone committed suicide they were condemned to hell. It was understood that they, “killed themselves as if to murder someone else thus breaking the sixth commandment, “Thou shall not kill.” (some versions, use the word “murder”) FULL POST
Posted 4/8/13 at 10:38 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
WASHINGTON, DC – House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) issued the following statement on the passing of former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher:
“The greatest peacetime prime minister in British history is dead. Margaret Thatcher, a grocer’s daughter, stared down elites, union bosses, and communists to win three consecutive elections, establish conservative principles in Western Europe, and bring down the Iron Curtain. There was no secret to her values – hard work and personal responsibility – and no nonsense at all in her leadership. She once said, ‘Defeat? I do not recognize the meaning of the word.’ Now this lady who was never for turning goes to rest as grateful friends and allies around the world mourn her passing and pray for her loved ones. Americans will always keep Lady Thatcher in our hearts for her loyalty to Ronald Reagan and their friendship that we all admired. At this difficult hour, I send the condolences of the U.S. House of Representatives to Prime Minister Cameron and the British people.”
Posted 4/5/13 at 11:23 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
By Joe McKeever
“I am not ashamed” (II Timothy 1:12).
No one enjoys being embarrassed. We do a hundred things to avoid it–take a daily bath, use deodorant, no longer wear some of the things in our closet, take care of the words we speak, admonish our children, and cut our lawns.
Shame is embarrassment on steroids. If embarrassment means to blush, shame means dying a thousand deaths while continuing to breathe.
To be ashamed is to be humiliated in front of people from whom you wanted acceptance or admiration or appreciation. You are devastated at the way people now see you; you wish to crawl into a hole.
Shame is a big issue with the Apostle Paul. Writing from his prison cell in Rome, in his final letter (or, at least, the last one we have of his epistles), he had this to say on the subject:
“Do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, or of me His prisoner, but join with me in suffering for the gospel…” (II Timothy 1:8)
“I know whom I have believed and am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him against that day” (II Timothy 1:12).
“Onesiphorus…was not ashamed of my chains, but when he was in Rome, he eagerly searched for me and found me….” (II Timothy 1:16-18) FULL POST
Posted 4/5/13 at 10:49 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
By Paul Tautges
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Deliberately remember these truths from Psalm 103.
Bookends of Praise: Before and after these “benefits,” the psalmist tells himself to Bless the Lord, O my soul! Let us do the same. FULL POST
Posted 4/5/13 at 3:49 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
By Ron Edmondson
One of the most dangerous forms of leadership, and one of the most frustrating, in my opinion, is the controlling leader. I have worked closely with a controlling leader, so I guess I may me sensitive to the issue. I’ve written about this issue previously, including:
Under a controlling leader’s watch, leadership development is virtually non-existent. Pride is rampant. Ideas are squashed. Momentum is curtailed. It never works well.
A friend of mine and I were discussing this issue recently. His boss is a controlling leader. It has led to burnout for my friend and caused him to start putting his resume out. He’s done. Can’t take it anymore. Knowing this young leader, I realize the business is going to suffer because the leader can’t let go of the reigns. As an outsider, it appears they will be losing a quality person if they lose my friend. At this point in the life of the business, it will be a devastating blow. FULL POST