At 10,587,270 views at 11 pm on only the fifth day since it was posted, the “Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus” YouTube video can officially be dubbed viral.
It’s amazing to me that 685 words with the right video editing and some perfectly timed musical swells can attract such a flash flood of attention. The entire video lasts but a brief 4 minutes and 4 seconds.
We’re all guilty of doing it.
It’s easy to reduce God to a magic eight ball.
As we approach crossroads in life, we remember, “Oh yeah, I’ve got God.” So we ask our question, shake really hard, and optimistically turn our magic 8 ball over.
Don’t reduce God to a computational machine.
But you may say, “What about knowing God’s will for me? What about knowing what I’m supposed to do? What school to go to? Who to marry?” These are all legitimate concerns no doubt. But they are not all there is to God.
Thanksgiving should be more than a holiday. It is an integral part of the Christian life.
From its inception to its conclusion, giving thanks is a huge secret to the Christian life, the experience of Christ, and the maintenance of the church life.
Three books from Paul show this: 1 Thessalonians, Colossians, and Ephesians.
Recently I read an article in the NY Times called, “The Meaningfulness of Lives.” The author argues that the meaningfulness of your life consists in whether or not your life tells a compelling narrative. What makes a compelling narrative is subjective and objective value.
Our experience of regeneration determines our subsequent experiences of life.
The experience of regeneration initiates something that continues for eternity. Regeneration orients us for the rest of our life and becomes the standard by which we evaluate all other life experiences. When we are awakened to what transpired within us at the time of our salvation, we begin to value “that which is really life.”
“Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you for a share of the allotted portion of the saints in the light; who delivered us out of the authority of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of His love.”
Your portion as a Christian is “in the light.”
Gothic architecture may have been founded on similar theological notions, but the religious, creative mind of the day, in its attempt to materialize this truth in concrete terms, stripped it of its full import. Beautiful stained glass windows diffracted light into a kaleidoscopic metaphor of God and a whole new genre of religious art flourished. Medieval man’s experience of this ‘lux nova’ was confined to basking in the colorful glow of physical light. The resultant concept was that man could rise to the contemplation of the divine only through the senses- a physical experience of an immaterial abstraction.
The far reaching ripples of this objective or physical experience of God lap upon the shores of modern Christianity.