Contributions (click here after reading below)

Link: Contributions (click here after reading below)

For those that don’t know, Campus Crusade for Christ staff members raise their own salary, benefits charges, and ministry expenses.

We don’t see it as just asking for financial support, but as an appeal to partnership.  We want a team of people to reach college students with the gospel.  We volunteer to be the members of that team that go out and beat the bushes on the college campus.  But we need a team of people behind us to “hold the rope” financially and prayerfully.

We Christians get a bad rap for always asking for money.  I realize that.  This is not an appeal for you to send money if you don’t want college students to hear the gospel, or if you aren’t a Christian yourself.  Skip this post and stay tuned for more content that will be decidedly more light-hearted and fun.  But if you are a Christian, and you do want to see college students reached with the gospel, we need you.  Our team is not complete, and with the addition of the new little boy, our needs have increased.  Please prayerfully consider supporting us with your prayers and your giving.  Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Stockholm Syndrome.

Derek Webb is not scared of controversy.  Here’s a line from his latest censored album.  (this is the uncensored version, so if language offends you, now would be the time to click the “funny” link to your right)

“Meanwhile we sit just like we don’t give a shit about 50,000 people that are dying today.”

Here’s another:

“You say you always treat people like you’d like to be, I guess you love being hated for your sexuality…”

And my favorite:

“…’cause if you really believed what you say you believe, you wouldn’t be so damn reckless with the words you speak.”

His record label wouldn’t let the song make it out of the gate, so he released it on his website.

I love this song.  The title of the song is “What Matters More,” and the controversy that has ensued has proven the words to be nearly prophetic.  A segment of the Christian community has freaked out more about the words of the song than the content of the message.  It is far more reckless to marginalize one group of sinners (homosexuals) while welcoming others than to use the word “damn.” What does matter more?  The gospel, or a social agenda?  The fact that people are dying and going to hell, or that we avoid saying the word “shit?”

If you’ll permit me, I want to step in in defense of Derek, and say that he is not saying that only the gospel matters, and so we should just walk around using the same language as the culture, with no regard.  He’s just saying that if he had to choose what matters most, it’s not going to be language or targeting homosexuals.

My prayer for this song is that it will make it to the ears of listeners who will actually be shocked by it.  I have been around Derek’s music for long enough to not be shocked by him using a “bad” word.  But the concepts he hits on in this song are something that the American church needs to deal with.

Here’s the (very well done) video for the song in question.

RIP Mary.

Mary Travers (of Peter, Paul, and Mary… and if that’s not enough of a clue, google it, young’n.) died today.

And I cried about it.

I was checking out her website and the touching things that her bandmates had to say about her and was struck by the fragility of life.  Do I know where Mary Travers is currently spending eternity?  Nope.  I didn’t know her, and only in passing listened to her music growing up.  But her death reminds me that good works are not enough.  She was an activist from birth.  According to her wikipedia page, her parents moved to Greenwich village in NY when she was just 2 years old.  She spent her entire life working for the causes of the underrepresented, the downtrodden, and the powerless.

But that’s not enough.

Again, I don’t know anything about her spiritual life, and so I am by no means pronouncing judgement on her.  My concern is that people not look at her life, which was spent living for a cause, and think that causes are enough to render you acceptable to God.  No amount of lobbying for abortion rights, gun control, animal rights, or racial reconciliation can get rid of the problem.

Her problem (and mine) is that we have declared war on God.  We’ve said to God that he isn’t doing a good enough job, and that we could do it better.  I still do it about once a day (on a particularly holy day), and Mary Travers did it too.  God, being perfect, and holy, and all of the things that we aren’t, can’t just let us off the hook for our rebellion.  He has to finish the war.  He has to win.  So, 2000 years ago, he won the war, by putting his perfect son on the front line of the rebels.  He killed his son so that infidels and rebels like me could go free.

All of the things that Mary Travers fought for (freedom for oppressed people, environmental awareness, etc) are worthy of fighting for.  But, until you deal with your own bankruptcy before God, you’ve still got a problem that no amount of activism can fix.

May the death of Mary Travers point us to the only cause worth fighting for.

A Downright Inappropriate Verse.

This is another in my latest series (that started out as one ginormous post I decided to break into several) on verses that will never be read on Christian radio.

This one is a verse that, if you are reading out loud to your underage children, (a practice I wholeheartedly discourage with any of my writing) I’d stop.

(mouse over the verse to read it)

Ezekiel 23:20

We are not likely to see much at all from this section of Ezekiel make it to the air on Christian radio.  It’s really racy.  The translators make the wording a little softer, here, but let’s face it, Zeke was not afraid to shoot straight with the people of Israel.  He crosses well over the line of propriety and decency.  But we here in the Evangelical camp are committed to all of Scripture being God-breathed and profitable. Even the parts that make us blush.

I love (is that a weird word in this context?) this verse because in it I find a God who is not afraid to tell his prophets all the dirty stuff going on in the hearts of his people.  God doesn’t pretend like the junk isn’t there.  This is a prophecy that most commentators agree is about Israel and Judah, the chosen people of God.  And yet God doesn’t go through and clean up the storefront so that the nations won’t find out how bad things are.  No, things are pretty rough when this type of lusting is going on.  And God includes details in this verse that he could have left out.  But he didn’t. 

When Christ came and died, he was aware of what he was paying the penalty for.  All of the sin, evil and brokenness in the world.  He didn’t just pay generally for general sins.  He paid for that specific act of lust, for those specific acts of unfaithfulness.  What a Savior.