If there is no God, and everything in this world is the product of (as Bertrand Russell famously put it) “an accidental collocation of atoms,” then there is no actual purpose for which we were made–we are accidents. If we are the product of accidental natural forces, then what we call “beauty” is nothing but a neurological hardwired response to particular data. You only find certain scenery to be beautiful because you had ancestors who knew you would find food there and they dsurvived because of that neurological feature and now we have it too. In the same way, though music … Continue reading Atheism Doesn’t Do Much for Beauty, Art, and Love
Most couples spend months–or even more than a year–planning for their wedding day. Though it’s not proven through sociological research, I believe girls start sampling center pieces when they are 11. What happens after the big day? A couple will spend the rest of their life together. At least that is the hope. Does anyone plan for that? With divorce rates skyrocketing each year, it’s becoming clear to even secular Americans that something isn’t working with the way people do marriage in our culture. And if you’ve bought divorce insurance before your wedding day, I’m willing to bet you aren’t starting holy matrimony off on a … Continue reading StartMarriageRight.com
Do you ever feel like you get so busy in life that you only work in your life and not on your life? In other words, how much time do you spend intentionally thinking about actions that need to be taken and then actually do them? Most of us, and I have felt this of late, simply react to what life brings. Not a lot of intentionality — just reactivity. Not a lot of preparation–just muddled busyness that general life brings. I’m talking about spiritual things here. Killing sin, memorizing scripture, pursuing my wife, serving people, investing in men. These … Continue reading Saturday Morning Potpourri
On January 16, Carly and I celebrated our first anniversary as a married couple. We spent the weekend in Kansas City. We probably could have done the same things in Omaha that we did in KC, but it was much more fun to drive for three hours together, get away from our “world,” and relax in a hotel because we didn’t have to clean up, make breakfast, or fix the bed. It was a year filled with laughter, tears, triumphs, arguments, romantic moments, and a huge learning curve. To date, it was the best year of my life because I … Continue reading Happy Anniversary to My Wife
Goodbye 2010. Hello 2011.
In 2010, I adjusted to life in America after coming home from Africa in late 2009. The year started out pretty good for me: I got married to my best friend Carly on January 16. Over the next 12 months, I worked three different jobs. My wife and I lived in three different residences. We became members at our church and it became home to us. We completed Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University…twice. (Therefore, we paid off thousands of dollars of student debt and paid off our car loan.) I read through the entire Bible. I started raising financial support to work at my church as a pastoral intern.
The list could go on, but I’ll stop for now. The common thread with 2010, as with every other year of my life, was God’s faithfulness and grace. His presence was clear, his comfort was gentle, his grace was sweet, and his rebuke was heavy. More often than not, the many species of pride in my life — self-pity, anger, bitterness, defensiveness, envy — clouded my view of these glorious things.
Happy New Year, friend. And it will be a happy new year, if you have God in your life. I think a recent Tweet by John Piper is appropriate:
God promises new troubles (Mat. 6:34), new mercies (Lam 3:23), and new hope (2 Cor 4:16) for every day this year.
The troubles will only make sense, and the mercies and hope will only be fulfilling, if Jesus is at the center of your 2011. I pray he is.
(If you want to see some stats from 2010 for this blog, click on the link below.)
My good friend Vern sent me an article from the Omaha World Herald that ran yesterday morning. The article is about divorce insurance that’s going up for sale in Dayton, Ohio. Here’s a depressing snippet: WedLock policyholders buy units of coverage. Each unit costs $15.99 per month and provides a cash payoff of $1,250 if the policyholder divorces. A spouse who, for example, buys 10 units stands to collect $12,500 in the event of a divorce. The policy does not mature for four years. After four years, the units increase in value by $250 per year. Could there be a … Continue reading Now for the couple that has it all…