I have good friends

20140628-133154-48714714.jpgI posted a comment, note and link to a friend’s blog the two days ago. And mentioned that I might want to borrow the book from him. This friend lives in the Northwest, but the book showed up in my mailbox today!

This is now third in line for my to-be read books, I have about 500 pages to get through first.

Flipping through it, I think it’ll be good and helpful. Now, what I really need is a book designed to convince non 5-Pointers of Limited Atonement/Already Election.

Anyone else want to send me a free book?

[su_box title=”About my friend…” box_color=”#0C6299″ radius=”6″] Jonathan Shradar is a former bouncer, current grace junkie, and the Director of Young Adults Ministry at Bethel Church in eastern Washington.

We were part of a clandestine small group in Washington, DC called the “Cabal” that met in pubs around the city and discussed the meat of living as a Christian. Don’t tell anyone about that.

He’s a father of two awesome kids, the husband a wife that’s too good for him, and has a weird relationship with his dog.

He met Forrest Whittaker once.[/su_box]

The election is over… I am disappointed.

I’m glad.

I have a few complaints though. I am disappointed in a whole lot of my friends.

Honestly, I don’t care at all who you voted for. I actually do completely understand why you voted for McCain, and I would not have been enormously disappointed if he would have won. I lean left and I do so because of things in my faith in Jesus Christ and many of the teachings of Scripture that move me that direction, but I absolutely understand and agree with the teachings that also agree with the McCain-Palin platform. The importance of one issue over another is something that we have to decide for ourselves and with the help of God who guides us. Yes the president-elect that I backed up with my vote has some views, and political leanings that I do not agree with, but there are also important ones that I do agree with and as I prayed and read and listened and learned I came to a place where I was absolutely certain that I was supposed to vote for Barack Obama.

Let me say these few things though:

  • The AntiChrist will probably not be an American president, especially one who is a Christian and says things like “I am a Christian… I believe in the redemptive death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. I believe that that faith gives me a path to be cleansed of sin and have eternal life.”
  • For those of you who claim to be a Christian, Barack Obama is a brother in Christ to tear him down publicly and to purposefully undermine defame him in the hearing of other people is, without a slight doubt, sin.
  • Democracy is not something that is ordained as a political system that is more or less ordained than any other system… including socialism. It is not something that is we can claim that God inherently supports. (And, I’d like to point out that Marxism and Leninism may be founded in many of the same principals as socialism it is not the same. We have never had an actual socialist state in history.)
  • The same (if not the inverse) is true about capitalism.

All of my posts on my blog also go to Facebook and I am tempted to tag people on this, but in light of what I am saying to some of my friends (and I do consider them to be friends and family in Christ) I will not, because I do believe that it would (in effect) be mocking them in public as well. I love you all, for real and my concern is not in your politics, but in your reaction to dissapointment. You (plural) are great and I think better of you than this, because you are.

excerpts from my journal – #3 Goldilocks and the church

As I read and learn more and more about the history of the basic branches of the Protestant church I find that the pattern of too-hard – too-soft – just-right in almost every run down of their distinctives and doctrines. There are issues of the “real presence” in communion, baptism (both child and believer’s), church political structure and its interaction with the secular politics, defense of the doctrines (or dogmas), the interpretation of the Bible, the nature of God, the nature of salvation and election… I find truth and different kinds of “missing it” in all of them.

Am I Goldilocks with my theology? Will I find the high Papa Church always too big, and hot but with the right firmness? Will the Mama church always be too soft and cold, but the right size? And the infantile church “just right”? And will I find myself thrown out of the house altogether?

Maybe the metaphor of the story breaks down around here – finding the extremes too much but comfort somewhere in the middle. It’s as if I’m looking for the medium sized, hard and cold… and not all of them go with the same system (Papa, Mama, Baby)…

Is it that I just find myself uncomfortable in every house but still welcomed… as if the bears welcomed Miss Locks into their home to stay.