Liberty and Justice For All, part 2

A man was arrested for murder. He didn’t set out to kill anyone, just to get some extra cash to pay the rent. But, the convenience store clerk went for a weapon under the counter, and the thief fired the handgun he brought for the robbery before he could suppress his defensive instincts. Continue reading

The Heart of the Gospel, part 1

Salvation by faith is hard for us to fully accept. It’s rather ridiculous, really. Surely God would want more than that. There has got to be a list of rules or a quota of good deeds to fill or something quantifiable to distinguish the good people from the bad, the saved from the lost.

But, that’s not the way it works, and that is hard to accept. Continue reading

Mission: People Who Wait, part 2

I find it sadly humorous that the people we have the hardest time being patient with are those class of hard-working people known as waiters and waitresses. Their very titles indicate that they are to “wait” on us, to be patient, conscientious, and hospitable. And, we take them up on that. Or, rather, we test them. “My food is cold. My chips are stale. My potatoes are too salty. I should get this meal free. I am definitely not leaving a tip.”

I have something to say here that may be a little controversial: the forgiveness and patience that Christ calls on us to extend even to our enemies must also extend to the waitstaff at the local restaurant.

I could also go on about Paul’s command that we “do everything without grumbling or questioning,” (Philippians 2:14) but I make it a point to only step on one toe at a time. Continue reading

Strengthened by Grace

A woman woke up in a hospital bed on a Thursday morning.  The night before, she had lain down in her own bed at home.  She was both devastated and thrilled when she learned that her unconscious body had been rescued from her burning apartment by heroic firefighters.

A man and his son were traveling down a rain-soaked highway when the car skidded out of control and careened toward the median.  The car rolled and landed upside down in a ditch full of storm water.  The man searched blindly for his son in the submerged car, but he felt a hand on his leg and a strong pull.  As he waded through neck-deep water toward safety and warmth he learned that his son had already been rescued by the police officers who had just pulled him out.

What does it feel like to be rescued? Continue reading