Our brother Daniel Lee preached a timely message last Sunday titled "A Tale of Two Sabbaths." To help you meditate on the sermon throughout the week, and as we prepare our hearts for next week's sermon, we share some of the sermon points here. Or, you can listen to the full sermon.
Politics. It's been a confusing subject for me ever since junior high school, when my sisters and I would watch the evening news with our father and discuss it over the dinner table. I knew it was a realm full of strong opinions and heated debate, but I had no idea which opinions were right. Sure, studying it in college gave me tons of information about it, but it didn't do much to help clear up the confusion, or to help me understand what God thought about politics or how I should think about it.
It’s a beautiful thing to see how God has grown Maranatha from its roots of being a baby churchplant started by a balding, middle-aged, uncultured family man and using him to lead a rag-tag group of much younger-aged men who wore jeans that were all too tight & skinny and listened to John Mayer and Coldplay all the day long.
This past week, like many of you, I witnessed a lot of outrage over the death of a lion named Cecil. Granted, he wasn’t just any lion. He had a name and a lot of fans. I have to admit I was disgusted by the photographs and by the story of how Cecil had been lured, shot, and tracked. I’m no hunter, and I’m not particularly inclined to kill animals (if we don’t count bugs!), so the indignation struck me as understandable, albeit excessive. What struck me as really interesting, though, was not so much the indignation over Cecil, but what seems to me like a relative lack of indignation over other ongoing injustices that are far more deserving of our attention and concern.
Over the next five Sundays, we will focus on one basic question: How do we, as children of God, live as citizens of the transcultural outpost in a way that is winsome to a confused world swirling in gender, socio-economic, generational, ethnic, and political strife?
BUT WAIT, WHAT EXACTLY IS THE “TRANSCULTURAL OUTPOST?”
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle."
That simple advice commonly attributed to Ian McClaren. It’s a call to be patient and extend grace to your neighbor not just because God commands you to, but because your neighbor is facing challenges you may know nothing about. Those around you are struggling. Like you, their lives are harder than they might appear. So be charitable. Be kind.
Two Sundays ago, we listened to the words of Jesus in Matthew 7:7-11, where he calls us to understand prayer relationally. That is, praying is not just about putting in an order with God and waiting for him to deliver us what we want. Instead prayer is a means by which we experience and live out an intimate relationship with our Father.