Arm Wrasslin’

In email exchanges you, Anthony, and I have been considering the reliability of one of the sources you quoted in a post. Nothing wrong with the quote, but on other points of doctrine I stated that I had real problems with that speaker’s grasp of the doctrine of Christ, judgment, mercy etc. I issued a warning, somewhat like a cranky old woman. You, Anthony, reminded me kindly of our duty to look for points of agreement rather than grounds for battle with others naming the name of Jesus. (Luke 9: 49, 50)

I needed that shot. A smack across the back of the head, lovingly mind you.

Thanks Bro’

I post this because I think that someone out there needs to be reminded of what we are shown in Romans chapters 14 and 15 about quibbling over non-essentials. I missed it. Also someone needs to see honest conflict resolution between Brothers in the faith.

It isn’t always just “Praise the Lord and pass the potato salad”.

Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON

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House Rules: Sound and Helpful

This is my Sanctuary.

This is where hope waits around every corner.

This is where I’m always greeted with open arms.

This is where my body language speaks volumes.

This is where I’m allowed to feel hurt. worried and stressed.

This is where I can get away from the hurt, worry and stress.

This is where my kids can be kids. And so can I.

This is where I play whatever game I want.

This is where I laugh as much as I cry.

This is my Ronald McDonald House.

This is where families find a home away from home.

Close to their sick children.

Note: I read this at a restaurant on a paper placemat under the Golden Arches. Wow what a sense of mission. What comfort. Almost a Christ-like statement of purpose, no?

Not a Day More

You have been a church member for as long as you can remember. Parents before you.

Attendance may have waivered from time to time, but you still see the process as valuable. You have read a couple of the Gospels. Frequently in Psalms and Proverbs. Perhaps Pastor’s sermon has provoked a little additional study. You try your best to live a good life. You measure yourself against others you admire.

But all this talk about “salvation” that you hear coming from the evangelicals just leaves you cold. Didn’t you get baptized? Didn’t you attend confirmation; take the pledge? What is all this panic?

Jesus said in John 9 that He had come into the world that they that see not might see. He bestows spiritual vision. Gives glimpses of the holiness of God and the inadequacy of self-righteousness. You must pray for this vision while you are still breathing. You must give yourself over more to considerations of the Eternal. This will require that you break through the pre-disposition of men to have to struggle and sweat for anything good. You are suspicious of those words “free for the asking”.

A good help will be found in the reading of Romans 10. At first reading you might hear yourself asking, “Is that all there is to this?” Pray for illumination. Read it again. The Gospel words of promise are timeless. Believe. Submit. Repent. Confess. Be done with men’s foolish efforts for righteousness sake. God has volunteered to pay the tab if you will trust (read Psalm 85).

The threshold of entrance has been made surprisingly simple. Simple to you, but enormously costly to Jesus and the Father. But with the transformation of new birth comes new comprehension, new sensitivity, new loyalty, new purpose, new zeal for the things of Christ. In short order you will acknowledge your blindness of bygone days. You will have become a citizen of Heaven.

Bursting with thankfulness you will be compelled to tell others the Good News in the ways for which you have been suited.

The flesh, the world and the devil will try to tell you that this is all malarkey. Persevere for the prize.

Doug Blair, Waterloo, ON