Saturday – Day of Rest or Physical Labor?

Well I suspect to get a lot of hard work done today at a rental house my parents own in Burke County. Hopefully I’ll be able to get the bathroom floor tore out and begin to re-brace and repair the floor for new wood and a new toilet, etc.

As I thought about this day and what kind of work we all do, I remembered hearing a quote from a 17th century monk – Brother Lawrence. Brother Lawrence worked in the kitchen and he had a tough time understanding the silly separation many make between spiritual things and secular things. Some think repairing a rotting floor is secular and teaching, preaching, and writing about Jesus is spiritual. Here are two quotes, “The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer, and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I possess.. God as if I were upon my knees at the blessed sacrament.” Another quote from Brother Lawrence, “Men invent means and methods of coming at God’s love, they learn rules and set up devices to remind them of that love, and it seems like a world of trouble to bring oneself into the consciousness of God’s presence. Yet it might be so simple. Is it not quicker and easier just to do our common business wholly for the love of him?”

Now I know some of you are consumed with thought about whether or not a Monk could know Jesus… so if that consumes your thought, read the subtitle Conversion on the wikipedia page about him and judge for yourself if you want. But either way, I like these quotes.

Now my question for today: Would we be more effective as followers of Jesus to encourage people to be fully in at whatever occupation they have begun, or would we be wiser to encourage them to work toward a more “spiritual” occupation?

When a big company like Wal-Mart does something bad many religious people…

jump all over them. The emails fly all around the internet from one church attending religious person’s computer to another… sometimes with the closing line “If you don’t send this to 10 people you don’t love Jesus.” We boycott Abercrombie and Fitch when we don’t approve of their advertising, we boycott Disney and others when they offer benefits to people we consider sinful but do we praise them when they make positive decisions? I sure didn’t hear anything when Abrecrombie and Fitch decided to change their marketing…

Well here is a possible positive. Wal-Mart and P & G are sponsoring a family-friendly movie on prime-time TV… and it will air tonight on NBC at 8pm/7pm Central. I just thought I would let you know… Here is a trailer, it looks interesting enough to me, that I believe the McDowell family will watch it – or at least Tivo or DVD it.

Consider this worship experience… I promise you’ll laugh (maybe even laugh out loud)

This video is around 3 minutes, but you’ll enjoy every minute.  Let me know what you think… does this seem like your church? Do we do some of these things at aplacetotalk? Should we worry about this type of practice? What do you think? Josh

“Sunday’s Coming” Movie Trailer from North Point Media on Vimeo.

Pro Life or Pro Choice… yes?

The other night some friends and I were discussing politics and up came a conversation about abortion. I was surprised at how many people in the room were both pro-life and pro-choice. Some of you may ask, how can a person be both pro-life and pro-choice? The answer is simple… a pro-life person believes in allowing every child to live and at the exact same time they also believe in allowing every mother the choice to carry the child or to end that pregnancy. I say end that pregnancy not because I hesitate calling the pregnancy life – I do believe that every baby is a human being at the moment of conception, but I choose to say ending the pregnancy because every woman that I have ever spoken to who has terminated a pregnancy regrets that decision. Again, I say terminate the pregnancy as opposed to other words so as not to cause that mother more guilt or pain.

I’m curious do you believe it is possible for a person to be both pro-life and pro-choice?  Keep in mind – I would love to see your thoughts and read your comments on this subject, but I will not tolerate hate and guilt (every woman I’ve ever talked to or heard from has more than enough guilt already) inducing replies.  If you believe abortion is murder and you are totally opposed to “choice” share why but don’t rant on and on spewing hatred… Jesus certainly would not.

I am so thankful that God forgives, and loves us in spite of our mistakes.

ADDED 9:39am 7/14/2010 – My wife thinks this blog entry should be more clear… so here is some clarification: A person could be pro-life personally, in other words they would never have an abortion and at the same time be pro-choice politically meaning they believe in allowing others to decide for themselves.

I stumbled across an interesting video the other day…

I stumbled across an interesting video the other day… and I thought I would see what you thought of it. I certainly believe there is only one way to eternal life and that is through Jesus Christ alone. So don’t assume from this video anything different… but I thought it was quite interesting and I’d love to hear what you think.

Thank you for visiting Josh’s blog…

I am planning to use this blog much like a journal so it may be great for you to follow along and it may seem like a waste of your time… but hopefully, if you follow along from time to time you’ll get to see a real person who openly shares his real thoughts with the world…

So, what I am I thinking right now?  I am thinking about the fact that this coming Sunday I am going to get (yes get to) to teach on the principle of giving.  I almost never talk about giving, in fact I can’t remember talking about giving on a Sunday morning at all.  One time in the past on a Sunday morning I taught about money, but my primary concern that day wasn’t actually teaching on giving but teaching people to use money wisely.  Now, I say I get to teach (or lead a conversation) on giving because I know that the truth about giving has greatly impacted my life for good in the past.

On the other hand  there are many reasons that I dread teaching on giving… I dread leading a conversation on giving because my primary source of income is from a weekly paycheck I receive from aplacetotalk (ap2t).  I dread leading a conversation on giving because so many religious leaders have manipulated scriptures in the past as they teach on giving.  I dread talking about giving because my pride would like to earn an income from something other than the gifts of followers of Jesus Christ.  I believe that someday I’ll have some great side income that will allow me to give back every dime that I am paid by a church, but for now I know that my time has to be focused on preparing for and serving the vision of ap2t.

Well… giving, tithing, what’s God’s plan for us today?