Category Archives: Christianity

7 sprinkles

Moses6Moses3

…he shall sprinkle some of it with his finger seven times before the atonement cover.

-Moses (Leviticus 16:14)

The Sunday morning after my father died I visited this statue of Holy Moses.

The Sunday morning after my father died I visited this statue of Holy Moses.

 

Sprinkle 1

The blood from my forehead that I sweated in the garden the night before. I was praying hard and my disciples were sleeping. I was concerned about tomorrow.

Sprinkle 2

The blood from my face where the Roman Soldiers wacked me. I just turned the other cheek. They wacked me there too, with a rod.

Sprinkle 3

The blood from my back when they flogged me hard with a Roman whip 39 times.

Sprinkle 4

When they pulled out my beard. They didn’t even put little pieces of Kleenexes to stop it from bleeding extra.

Sprinkle 5

When they shoved a crown of Thorns deeply into my scalp. Father forgive them please!

Sprinkle 6

My hands and feet bled when they hammered them to the cross so they would stick. They wanted to make sure I wouldn’t walk away.

Sprinkle 7

When they pierced my side. I didn’t feel that one, but it still counts as a sprinkle. I was in a temporary state of being dead.

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Filed under Christianity, Religion

Instead of a Show

This is Jon Foreman going prophetic. The song is on the Summer EP – which is the best of his four season EPs. Jon Foreman is the lead singer of the Christian band Switchfoot.

Here are the words:

I hate all your show and pretense
The hypocrisy of your praise
The hypocrisy of your festivals
I hate all your show
Away with your noisy worship
Away with your noisy hymns
I stomp on my ears when you’re singing ‘em
I hate all your show

Instead let there be a flood of justice
An endless procession of righteous living, living
Instead let there be a flood of justice
Instead of a show

Your eyes are closed when you’re praying
You sing right along with the band
You shine up your shoes for services
There’s blood on your hands
You turned your back on the homeless
And the ones that don’t fit in your plan
Quit playing religion games
There’s blood on your hands

Instead let there be a flood of justice
An endless procession of righteous living, living
Instead let there be a flood of justice
Instead of a show
I hate all your show

Let’s argue this out
If your sins are blood red
Let’s argue this out
You’ll be one of the clouds
Let’s argue this out
Quit fooling around
Give love to the ones who can’t love at all
Give hope to the ones who got no hope at all
Stand up for the ones who can’t stand at all, all
I hate all your show
I hate all your show
I hate all your show
I hate all your show

Instead let there be a flood of justice
An endless procession of righteous living, living
Instead let there be a flood of justice
Instead of a show
I hate all your show

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Filed under Christian Music, Christianity

Join the Two Futures Project

The world needs to choose the future of no nuclear weapons/war. We need to fulfill the vision of Ronald Reagan and Gorbachev  and get rid of all nuclear weapons for the survival of the planet. Countries that are developing nuclear weapons should stop – but also countries, like the United States, should get rid of theirs.

It has been endorsed by many Christian leaders including Ron Sider, Leith Anderson, Rob Bell, Bill Hybels, Lynne Hybels, Miroslav Volf, and John Stott.

Here is a Christian initiative to do that:

http://twofuturesproject.org/

and you can order a free DVD from them – which I did this morning.

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Filed under Christianity, Iran, Life, News, Social Justice, War

Makoto Fujimura in Philadelphia

Gretchen and I are planning to go to the opening reception of the art of Makoto Fugimuro this Friday. The White Stone Gallery is located in the Manayunk area of Philadelphia. I will venture forth using public transportation from downtown Philly, while Gretchen will drive in from West Chester.

From the artist’s blog (which is a beautiful blog!):

Makoto Fujimura Solo Exhibit, Olana-Psalms of Ascent will open at White Stone Gallery in Philadelphia
April 3- June 21st, 2009

Opening Reception: Friday, April 17, 7-9 pm

I will be exhibiting devotional works never before exhibited, such as the “Olana – Matthew Six” piece shown above.

Special Offer: I have prepared special, handmade bookmarks to be available as a gift, only to those who purchase Refractions: a journey of art, faith and culture at the gallery!

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Filed under Art, Christianity, Philadelphia

The Stations of the Cross using the Bible Experience

http://www.bibleexperience.com/thecross

Track Christ’s final journey with The Bible Experience for Easter. The selections below are a variation on the Stations of the Cross known as the Scriptural Way of the Cross. Follow along by listening to the audio clips, reading the passages of scripture, and then taking a moment of quiet reflection with each accompanying prayer. After experiencing Easter through the world’s most celebrated audio Bible, you’ll truly understand why hearing is believing. Use the roman numerals below to begin your journey. Start Here

Stations of the Cross

Also referred to as Via Crucis, Via Dolorosa, or the Way of the Cross, the Stations of the Cross provide a journey of prayer and meditation focused upon scenes of the suffering and death of Jesus. St. Francis of Assisi started the tradition of the Stations of the Cross as a chapel devotion. Today it is most commonly practiced on Good Friday and on Friday evenings during Lent, although it can be practiced at any time.

Scriptural Way of the Cross

The Scriptural Way of the Cross was introduced on Good Friday in 1991 and is a popular variant to the traditional versions. The variation of the Scriptural Way of the Cross above is designed for personal meditation and prayer. It includes a fifteenth station for the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.

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Filed under Christianity, Easter

Rick Warren’s Prayer and Gene Robinson’s Prayer

At the Inauguration of President Obama.

Rick Warren:

Let us pray.

Almighty God, our Father, everything we see and everything we can’t see exists because of you alone. It all comes from you. It all belongs to you. It all exists for your glory.

History is your story. The Scripture tells us, “Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God. The Lord is One.” And you are the compassionate and merciful one. And you are loving to everyone you have made.

Now, today, we rejoice not only in America’s peaceful transfer of power for the 44th time. We celebrate a hingepoint of history with the inauguration of our first African American president of the United States. We are so grateful to live in this land, a land of unequaled possibility, where the son of an African immigrant can rise to the highest level of our leadership. And we know today that Dr. King and a great cloud of witnesses are shouting in heaven.

Give to our new President, Barack Obama, the wisdom to lead us with humility, the courage to lead us with integrity, the compassion to lead us with generosity. Bless and protect him, his family, Vice President Biden, the cabinet, and every one of our freely elected leaders.

Help us, O God, to remember that we are Americans, united not by race, or religion, or blood, but to our commitment to freedom and justice for all. When we focus on ourselves, when we fight each other, when we forget you, forgive us. When we presume that our greatness and our prosperity is ours alone, forgive us. When we fail to treat our fellow human beings and all the earth with the respect that they deserve, forgive us. And as we face these difficult days ahead, may we have a new birth of clarity in our aims, responsibility in our actions, humility in our approaches, and civility in our attitudes, even when we differ.

Help us to share, to serve and to seek the common good of all. May all people of good will today join together to work for a more just, a more healthy and a more prosperous nation and a peaceful planet. And may we never forget that one day all nations and all people will stand accountable before you. We now commit our new president and his wife, Michelle and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, into your loving care.

I humbly ask this in the name of the one who changed my life, Yeshua, Isa, Jesus [Spanish pronunciation], Jesus, who taught us to pray:

“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”

Gene Robinson:

By The Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson, Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire

Opening Inaugural Event
Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC
January 18, 2009

Welcome to Washington! The fun is about to begin, but first, please join me in pausing for a moment, to ask God’s blessing upon our nation and our next president.

O God of our many understandings, we pray that you will…

Bless us with tears – for a world in which over a billion people exist on less than a dollar a day, where young women from many lands are beaten and raped for wanting an education, and thousands die daily from malnutrition, malaria, and AIDS.

Bless us with anger – at discrimination, at home and abroad, against refugees and immigrants, women, people of color, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Bless us with discomfort – at the easy, simplistic “answers” we’ve preferred to hear from our politicians, instead of the truth, about ourselves and the world, which we need to face if we are going to rise to the challenges of the future.

Bless us with patience – and the knowledge that none of what ails us will be “fixed” anytime soon, and the understanding that our new president is a human being, not a messiah.

Bless us with humility – open to understanding that our own needs must always be balanced with those of the world.

Bless us with freedom from mere tolerance – replacing it with a genuine respect and warm embrace of our differences, and an understanding that in our diversity, we are stronger.

Bless us with compassion and generosity – remembering that every religion’s God judges us by the way we care for the most vulnerable in the human community, whether across town or across the world.

And God, we give you thanks for your child Barack, as he assumes the office of President of the United States.

Give him wisdom beyond his years, and inspire him with Lincoln’s reconciling leadership style, President Kennedy’s ability to enlist our best efforts, and Dr. King’s dream of a nation for ALL the people.

Give him a quiet heart, for our Ship of State needs a steady, calm captain in these times.

Give him stirring words, for we will need to be inspired and motivated to make the personal and common sacrifices necessary to facing the challenges ahead.

Make him color-blind, reminding him of his own words that under his leadership, there will be neither red nor blue states, but the United States.

Help him remember his own oppression as a minority, drawing on that experience of discrimination, that he might seek to change the lives of those who are still its victims.

Give him the strength to find family time and privacy, and help him remember that even though he is president, a father only gets one shot at his daughters’ childhoods.

 

And please, God, keep him safe. We know we ask too much of our presidents, and we’re asking FAR too much of this one. We know the risk he and his wife are taking for all of us, and we implore you, O good and great God, to keep him safe. Hold him in the palm of your hand – that he might do the work we have called him to do, that he might find joy in this impossible calling, and that in the end, he might lead us as a nation to a place of integrity, prosperity and peace.

 

Links that I am posting from:

http://www.episcopalcafe.com/lead/faith_and_politics/gene_robinsons_prayer_for_pres.html

http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctpolitics/2009/01/rick_warrens_in.html

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Filed under Christianity, prayer, Religion

Africa Needs God

Here are some quotes from an editorial from the London Times, December 27, 2008 entitled As an atheist, I truly believe Africa needs God.

 

….but Christians black and white, working in Africa, do heal the sick, do teach people to read and write; and only the severest kind of secularist could see a mission hospital or school and say the world would be better without it.

Whenever we entered a territory worked by missionaries, we had to acknowledge that something changed in the faces of the people we passed and spoke to: something in their eyes, the way they approached you direct, man-to-man, without looking down or away. They had not become more deferential towards strangers – in some ways less so – but more open.

This article is well worth reading! Many of my Christian friends – especially my younger Christian friends –  are planning on going to Africa – Sudan, Kenya, Mozambique and Senegal- to provide healing, education, hope, and the gospel of Jesus Christ.  They are my heroes! I pray for you guys every day! 

 

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Filed under Africa, Christianity, mission, Uncategorized