Homosexuality and other loaded words

It’s hard to have a fruitful conversation about faith & homosexuality these days unless you’re having them with people that already think like you on the topic.  Hopefully, what follows will lead all of us (whatever side you’re on) to having conversations about these topics that actually lead somewhere.

Homosexuality is such a loaded word.  Because it’s so loaded, it really makes it tough to have a conversation about it.  Two people can use the word ‘homosexuality’ and have two completely different things in mind.  (It’s kind of like using the word “trunk”. It could refer to a part of an elephant, a storage container, the base of a tree, the rear of a car, etc.  There are so many uses of that word that it has to be defined further before any intelligent conversation can be had.)  So, it’s no surprise that when Chris Broussard was baited into a question about homosexuality and Christianity, and he answered with grace and precision, an entire community of people were enraged. Read more →

Ugly People Hate Mirrors

Being a member of the Blueprint family for the past three years has been an incredible blessing for me. One of the primary things that the Lord has taught me is the importance of the community’s role in my growth as a believer. I’ve heard Dhati hammer the point home on countless occasions: Community exists for the purpose of sanctification. Makes sense.

I mean, you can’t really exercise the gifts of the Spirit alone, and you certainly can’t bear the fruit of the Spirit alone.

This is one of those statements that sounds really good on paper (Yeah, lets challenge each other and grow closer to Jesus!) but gets pretty messy once you actually try and do it. Being merciful when you’ve been wronged is not easy. Giving cheerfully when you’re broke? Not easy. Longsuffering? It is as unpleasant as it sounds. But that is the reality. For whatever reason, God in His wisdom has ordained the community as the primary environment for discipleship and spiritual growth. And within this community, marriage is set apart with special significance. Read more →

Not Enough

I don’t talk about Jesus enough.  You probably don’t either.  Does that come off harsh?  Judgmental? Insensitive?  It probably does, and those things may be turn-offs to the gospel.  But the truth is that however it came off, it actually came off.  Do you know what perhaps is a bigger turn off to the gospel?  Silence.  And many of us are silent because we are scared of conflict.  We are scared of people thinking the wrong things about us (which is a valid concern).  What’s an even more valid concern is that although our slience ensures that people don’t think the wrong thing about us, it almost definitely ensures that people continue to think the wrong thing about Jesus. Read more →

BOSTON BOMBINGS, JUSTICE, AND THE MOST “INSENSITIVE” WORDS JESUS EVER SAID

Once again, with a heavy heart, I am writing about a tragedy that has occurred in our society. Yesterday, during the Boston Marathon, a series of deadly bombings ripped through the crowds injuring over a hundred of people, even killing two. This senseless act of malicious violence once again confirms the bleak, desolate state our broken world is currently in. During his White House address, President Barack Obama declared that he would find those who did this malicious crime and they will “feel the full weight of justice.” I whole-heartedly agree with the President and his bold cry for justice, but I tend to wonder if I truly understand what justice means at times. After reading my Bible in hopes of finding light to this situation, I stumbled across a passage that wrecked my heart. As I share the following words I read, please tread patiently with me through the entire article. In no way am I trying to senselessly disarm this situation with heartless Christian divergent tactics. I am only trying to humbly bring light to the truth about difficult situations such as these in hopes of bringing peace to those who are hurting. Read more →

Sacrificing God

“Covetousness puts God on the altar as the sacrifice for what we want more.”

As those words exited my mouth this past Sunday, they cut me to the core. Earlier in the sermon, I’d shared how God has been showing me my own covetousness. My wife and I have two kids already, Serenity & Joelle, and she was ready to hang up childbearing. It wasn’t that I wasn’t with her on that, but selfishly I would contend that decision was contingent on what we were having this time. I wanted a boy. Badly. When things would get tense, I would joke with her saying, “Look, God is the one who’s in control so if you got beef, pray and eat more chicken!”

She never thought that was funny. Read more →

Clear the stage

As Pastor Muche confessed his own covetousness with us this past Sunday—how badly he desired to have a son—all I could think was, “I know what that feels like.” There was a time where I wanted to play D1 basketball so bad that my family drove 16 hours to drop me off at the University of Connecticut. And there was that time, maybe a time or ten, where I wanted some shoes so bad that I visited the same website every day just to see them—until I could convince myself I was suppose to have them regardless of the price and my uhh insufficient funds. Nothing else mattered as much. But what ran through my mind most vividly was the time all my years of idolatry reached a point that threatened to destroy my soul and kidnap my identity… Read more →

Primed for Mission

As a church, for the past couple of months, we have been going through the Tangible Kingdom Primer. This eight-week primer is a shorter and intentionally more practical version of a larger book that encourages “incarnational living,” “gospel intentionality,” and inviting “sojourners” into our lives. If you’re anything like me, the quoted terms I just used may sound familiar but moreso really strange. When I picked up this book for the first time, I had big expectations for something about my life to change drastically. Now, I was definitely not putting all my stock in any book, other than the Bible, transforming my life, but I did have big hopes that going through it would challenge me in some new ways. So, as I started going through it, I found I did enjoy it a lot. The weekly challenges through scriptures about living a life influenced by the gospel were heart-provoking, and I was able to see my own sin in how I wasn’t allowing the gospel to be preeminent in my own life. With that said, a couple weeks in, I was still waiting for that drastic, life-changing charge that the primer would give. But it didn’t come. All the primer seemed to talk about was ordinary life events like eating, cooking meals, hanging out, working, praying, etc. and how God could use them.

Then it hit me. Read more →

Talking to Strangers

How do I say hi?

To answer, I posed the question to MizChatty, an experienced conversationalist (and fictitious persona).

This is what MizChatty says:
“Start with Goodbye.”
“Yes, That’s what I said. You heard me. Let me explain.”

“When I was a teen I noticed most of the other teens looked like this:”

“Then again, I probably looked like them too.”

Read more →