The Power of Prayer

Since I've been thinking so much about relationship lately-- let's turn the conversation now to prayer. Prayer is also a big part of relationship, praying for each other, with each other, and over each other. It's also one of the key factors in our relationship with Christ... it's how we communicate with him on a daily basis. I know I've mentioned Carlos Whittaker before, but yesterday he put up this post about prayer. Basically, he asked what people needed prayer for and committed to praying for them this morning. Wow. What an awesome commitment to being relational with people. The last time I check there were 127 comments asking for prayer, I started to write each and every name down-- along with a general summation of what their prayer request was for. It took a long time, but I finally got to the end of the comments, I also realized half way through that because of the popularity of his blog, the list was only going to grow-- and I probably wouldn't be able to keep up with writing them down while I am at work... so I'm going to fold that piece of paper and carry it in my shirt pocket the rest of the day, any free moment I get I will spend in prayer for that paper...

The requests were emotional, heart-wrenching, and broad. Ranging from job needs, to health, to comfort, relief, peace, wisdom, clarity, guidance, sanity, etc. Some of them moved me beyond belief, to hear what these people were struggling with, and how vulnerable they are. It made me think about what Los was provided for these people. Not only was he giving them an opportunity to let it all hang out, but he was giving them some hope by praying for them and letting them know that someone out there cares. So I spent a few moments looking into some verses on prayer-- this is definitely NOT an all encompassing list, but just some that stood out to me...

"I give thank to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus" 1 Corinthians 1:4

"Pray without ceasing" 1 Thessalonians 5:17

"But Let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind" James 1:6

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7

I wrote the above portion of this post this morning, since then God has been moving in my heart in big ways. Not only have I been praying for my list of people, which has substantially grown as the day has progressed, but I have also been engaged in some cool conversations with people close to me. One of those conversations came while I was writing this post this morning. A friend of mine, who is more of a brother for sure, and I were talking about our evenings. After I left his house last night, and he finally headed into bed... he said he had felt urgent in his prayers lately and he was tired of feeling "like a freakin weeble in life". So as he was praying, God laid Psalm 20 on his heart. To his knowledge he had never even read Psalm 20 (you can read it here) . The very first verse in that passage says this "May the LORD answer you when you are in distress; may the name of the God of Jacob protect you." Psalm 20:1.... Wow, what a cool answer to my brother's prayers. Here he was praying with urgency and (in his own words) "it was like God was sitting right there saying... "dude, you worry too much... I got this". Not only was it a cool story and testament of God's power, but that feeling of peace and humility was passed on to me through my brother. Here I was thinking about prayer, how much I need to pray, how important prayer is and yet all the while wondering why I don't pray and realizing it's because there are days when I doubt the power of prayer. Then God slaps me in the head and says... "I answer prayers. Sometimes immediately, sometimes in ways you won't like... but I answer".

I was so convicted in that moment. It made me realize how powerful prayer is, and it reminded me of how powerful my God is. He can do anything, and He hears my cries in the night, and my praises in the mornings. He knows every thought that goes through my head... but I also have to approach Him, carry on conversations with Him, and praise/pray to Him about what's going on. Because even though He already knows all those things, He wants to have a relationship with me. He wants me to carry on a relationship with Him, and He wants me to confide in, run to, and cling to Him throughout all circumstances. God is so good.

Take a few moments and pray, if you would like... you can add the people from my list below to your prayer list:

Grace and Peace



Relationship. I have written so many times about how important this word is. Not just that it's important to me, but how important it is to our spiritual health. I know some of you are sitting there thinking "oh yeah, spiritual health, right... I went to church Sunday, I'm healthy". I would tell you, you are wrong (and not just because I'm always right... kidding). Seriously though, I would almost argue... and this may cause an upheaval of "constructive criticism"... that those that are relational with Christians throughout the week, in the evenings, on Facebook/Twitter/Email/Text, and on the weekends at a football game/restaurant/or dare I say it a bar, but aren't always in church on Sunday morning, may very well be healthier than you. And me. Now, I'm not saying that church isn't important, because it is... and I value my church family. There are immense opportunities to be relational at church, however... if that's the only way you are connecting with God and others throughout your week... you probably aren't as healthy as you think you are...

Let's take a look at the book of Acts. Chapter 2, verses 42-47 just to begin with. Now, as a back story... what it says in this passage follows a gathering during Pentecost when the disciples are filled by the Holy Spirit and begin to speak in tongues. Droves of people come to witness what's happening, and most of them were confused and doubtful. Peter stands up to this crowd and basically calls them out on their doubts. He tells them that God has made the one that they crucified to be Lord and Messiah. It convicted these people, it broke them and they asked what they should do. He told them to repent and to give their lives to Jesus, and in verse 41 it says "Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day." Now, before I get to my main point... let's go ahead and realize what's happening here. First off, this happens during a gathering at Pentecost, which, at the time, was a feast to celebrate the giving of the Law of Sinai. The disciples were gathered together, being relational when this all went down. Secondly, Peter could have easily walked away from the crowd and just kept going... but he didn't. He stuck around, and stood up to explain. Why? Because he wanted to not only be intentional in making sure these people he cared for, that he didn't know mind you, got the opportunity to realize what was going on so they could form their own relationship with Christ. Secondly, because of Peter's desire (or God's call on Peter) to be relational and see others become relational.. 3,000 lives were changed that very day. That. Is. Huge.

Now, Acts 2:42-27 says this about the 3000 people that were baptized following Peter's message, "They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They Sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved."

It would be wrong for me to not give credit where credit is due... some of the following points, come from the sermon notes from the message this past Sunday at Community Church of Columbus. In fact, the majority of this post was actually inspired by Pastor Chuck's message. I'm just expanding on how it impacts the idea of relationship. These are what my sermon notes look like (see below)

For the most part the above is legible, so I want to touch on a few things... First off, it says Jesus' followers made a commitment. Relationship and commitment go hand-in-hand. I'm not necessarily talking about a romantic relationship, I'm talking about the connection between friends, family, us and God, God and us, etc. In order to maintain a good relationship, there has to be some level of commitment. Whether that means you are committed to seeing each other once a year, once a month, to calling each other once a week, or to spending quality time with Christ each day... there has to be some commitment. God already made a commitment to be there for us when He sent Christ to die on the Cross. We need to hold up our end of the relationship. Line 1B. says... imagine that... RELATIONSHIP. Now we see why this got my mind racing. There are a couple of footnotes that may be harder to read, the first is there at the bottom of the page and it says this "Being intentional about being relational is key to the Church". Which is what I'm driving at here, and by Church I don't mean CCC. I mean the UC (Universal Church). If we, as the body of Christ, are not intentional about being relational with others, and with Christ... just like Peter was... then there is no way we can multiply Jesus' followers (Point number 3.). We can't spread the Kingdom, if we don't have the kind of relationship that allows us to know why the Kingdom is worth it. Acts 20:7-12 tells the story about a man named Eutychus who falls out of a window and dies. Now, he fell out of the window while Paul was talking because Paul was trying to talk to these people as much as he could before he had to leave the next time, it was near midnight when Eutychus fell. Paul goes down to Eutychus, throws himself on the man and says "He's Alive!"... then it says they go back upstairs again, broke bread and ate. Talking until daylight. Some of you might be wondering why Pastor Chuck, and now myself, are including this passage. I think it's a perfect example of relationship. Paul knew he was leaving in the morning, but instead of "getting a good night's rest", he decided to spend literally every moment possible with these people. Then, when Eutychus falls out the window, Paul could have said "Well guess that's my cue to leave, this party is dead..." (that Pun was for you Chuck). Instead he went down, brought Eutychus back to life, and then went back upstairs to spend more time with people. He didn't allow this tragic and then miraculous occurrence to divert his intentions. He didn't heal Eutychus and then go on his way, leaving the people in awe. He went upstairs and spent the rest of the night in community with these people.

Which brings me to my next (overall) point from the sermon notes... "Jesus' followers experienced real  community". In verses 43-46 it emphasizes the community that believers were experiencing. They "were together and had everything in common" (44), sold what they had to give to those in need (45) and "Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts"(46). It doesn't say they ate with those that were just like them, or just their families... they ate together. All of them. They gathered as a community and spent time with each other, just enjoying each person's presence. THIS is what community, relationship, and the Universal Church should look like. These believers, because of their faith and trust in God, realized that in order to continue to learn, pray, and strive to be more like Christ they had to focus on relationship. Not only were the gathering together and experiencing community, they were doing it with "glad and sincere hearts". There wasn't any grumbling, or discontent among them at this time. Just joy and sincerity in their desires to be with one another.

The last verse in the passage goes on to say this "praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved." Because of the believers' intentions to be a community and to be relational with one another and with God, others were joining them. The Kingdom was growing, simply based on their ability to gather together for one thing... relationship.  Look at all the ways we are connected to other people today. We constantly have the ability to reach out to others at our fingertips. The advances in technology that have improved our ability to be relational should be HUGELY impacting the growth of the Kingdom. There is no reason that these 12 disciples were able to, in one moment, baptize 3,000 people... and yet we aren't reaching people in such big ways. Some of us have almost 3,000 facebook friends (I don't personally). Now, I also understand that the disciples were gifted differently, and they had timing on their side. They literally walked with Jesus, ate with Jesus, and communed with Jesus. However, that's no excuse for us to not be answering the call in Matthew 28:19 "Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit." As a community, we not only outnumber those 3012 people (including the disciples there) but we, individually, also have immensely more opportunities to reach others.

Let's start being relational with each other. With other people. With Christ. Let's start to commune together, eat together with glad and sincere hearts, and praise God together, not just in a church building, but in our homes, at our offices, and anywhere we are. That's become spiritually healthy, and start reaching others. Let's be like Paul and run down and save someone from death, the death of their soul, and then spending time with them to help nurture their growth and our own. Let's be intentional.

"Busyness may feed your ego, but it will starve the people around you"- Pete Wilson

Grace and Peace


God and Golf

To say that I'm an amateur golfer would be giving myself far too much credit. However, I do love the game of golf (in this case I use the word "love" lightly, you that golf understand what I mean). I love everything about the game of golf, the complexity and beauty of a great course, the feel of the fairway under my feet, hitting the perfect shot, sinking a good putt, and just the peacefulness that I can experience when I'm playing. Sometimes, I take golf too seriously. I play in a weekly golf league, it's something I really enjoy, but I definitely take it a little too seriously. That realization came crashing down on top of me this evening. I didn't go to my small group tonight because I've been feeling "under the weather" since Sunday evening. I wanted to be able to go to bed early, so I came home after work. Around 8:15 I headed out to the garage because I had decided I needed to clean my golf clubs for tomorrow's match. I turned on some music, grabbed a lawn chair, and sat down and started cleaning. After about 5 clubs I started feeling a guilty. I realized that I put a lot of time, effort, and care into my golf game... going as far as spending my free time scrubbing clubs. Now, I don't think there is anything wrong with taking care of your material possessions, please don't misinterpret where I'm going with this...

I started thinking about my spiritual life. Every aspect of my daily prayer life, the time I spend (or don't spend) in the Word, and the time I spend in good conversation with those around me about Christ. God did one of those back of the head slaps and said "HEY YOU, PAY ATTENTION!". Sidenote: I'm starting to get those head slaps more often, good thing? yes, headache? yes... Anyway, what I realized is that I don't give my spiritual life the same time, effort and care that I do my golf game, or my Jeep, or my job for that matter. I allow everything to take priority in my life other than my time with Christ. Now, I have always known that I am a wretched sinner saved by the grace of God. But that's no excuse to not give Him the love and attention He gives me, and deserves. I turned off my music, and I kept thinking about this. I started asking myself why do I put so much effort into something that doesn't always enhance my growth with Christ. I mean, there are times where I'm sure God is very disappointed in my attitude, language, and conversation while I'm on the golf course. Yet, there I was allowing golf to take away from God. I'm not saying I shouldn't have been cleaning clubs, but I am saying my mindset when I sat down to do that should have been different. I should have seen it as some time to be in conversation with God, time to listen to a sermon or some worship music and sit and ponder the glories of God. Instead I was listening to country music, thinking about work, how I need to clean the Jeep, my weekend plans, and girls (my mind runs at 100 miles per minute). And of course, it doesn't stop there...

While all this was going on, I got an email from a brother of mine. He had asked me to read over a blog post that he had written (click here to read Chris' post) I wasn't sure why he chose me to read it, or if he even knew why. Now I understand. His post was being used by God to teach me this lesson. It's about our motives behind what we do, that doing the right things for the wrong motives, doesn't necessarily please Christ.  I was so thankful for the opportunity to read this in the moment of what I was learning. I realized that I need to be intentional about doing things that are pleasing to God. That could very well be cleaning clubs, if I'm doing that as a way to be in reverence of Christ. If I'm doing that to serve my own selfish desires, then that's not very pleasing to God. I need to be more intentional about my walk with Christ. I need to put some focus into what matters the most, and stop finding excuses to do other things. I need to stop running. When I put focus in God, He usually teaches me some hard lessons. Whether those are about myself, my relationships, or my walk in general, they can be things I don't want to learn because they stretch me. I need the stretching, I need to be broken, and I need to start focusing on the opportunities I have to be broken and stretched. I need to stop being scared about learning and growing. I need to put more focus on God, than I do on golf. I need to be disciplined in discipleship.

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline." 2 Timothy 1:7

Grace and Peace


FREE HUGS!!! Keep reading to find out how to get yours!

This might be the greatest video of all time. Seriously. I found this on Carlos Wittaker's Blog and I couldn't help but watch it. This isn't the first time I've seen or heard about someone giving out "free hugs", when I lived in Lexington, Jon Weece, the pastor at Southland, used to give out free hugs downtown. This is something that I have always been fascinated with, and wish I could experience on the street. For those of you that know me pretty well, you know I'm a hugger. I don't care who you are, I will probably hug you... and I have toyed with doing this before. This guy takes it to a whole new level though, he almost forces hugs on people... not really sure how he didn't get punched, but I'm glad he didn't. My favorite part has to be, "we need more of this all the time" guy.

Here's the question Los posted, and that I want to post to all of you... would you hug him? NO really, would you hug this guy, or would you look at him like he's crazy. I'll be really honest, as much as I love this, there are days where I would look at that guy like he's an alien. Slide to one side or the other and walk right past him. I think there's a couple of reactions that happen in this situation, so here they are:

1. The Cell-Phone dodge: You all know this one, it happens on a regular basis at church, youth group, in the parking lot at the mall, you see someone you don't want to talk to, BUT because you're a Christian instead of outright ignoring them, you pretend like you're answering your cell phone and just kind of wave them off-- maybe you even go with answering the phone with "Oh Hey Pastor Tim, I've been needing to talk to you" that way your "friend" really thinks you are important because the Pastor is calling  YOU.

2. The Look-Away dodge: This is where you look into a nearby store, a bird flying by overhead, or at a car passing by and pretend that you are engrossed in some deep thinking. Hoping the person looking to give you a hug will just let you pass by them. This is also works with the bell ringing Santa Claus.

3. The 5 D's: Dodge, dip, duck, dive, and dodge... (name that movie). This is pretty simple, just get out of the way of the impending hug in any way possible. Then you don't even have to deal with the awkwardness of the approaching hug. Isn't the the epitome of W.W.J.D.?

4a. Don't bro me, if you don't know me: This is when you see said hugger coming and say "sorry you've got the wrong person". This create's just enough of an awkward moment that you can slip away while the hugger drives to figure out what just happened... it's a total mind juke.

4b. The "It's been a long time bro" awkward hug: This is when whether you know the person or not, you pretend like it's been a long time since you've seen them and you hug them anyway. This can happen almost anywhere, but instead of admitting you don't know who someone is, we do the only reasonable thing there is to do in such a situation, and lie. Completely acceptable in most situations?

5. Hug away: That's right, just hug the person back. Why not? What's going to happen if you hug this random person? Maybe they haven't been hugged in 8 years (true story there), maybe the just got a new job and are celebrating, maybe someone they love just passed away and they need comfort. I think if there were more hugs in the world, things would be a lot better. I think Jesus would hug everyone He met if He felt the need. And aren't we supposed to seize every opportunity we have to be Jesus to someone?

Hug someone today... I dare you to. And when you see me next time, don't be surprised if I hug you, and feel free to use any of the 5 approaches to my hugging... because even if you avoid my hug, at least I'll know you read my blog :)

Grace and Peace



Last night, immediately after I finished my last post... I packed up my stuff and drove over to the church for a meeting. This meeting wasn't a meeting for CCC, but rather a meeting for a future church plant that is going to take place right here in Columbus, IN. Now, there's a couple of things that directly relate to last night's post, so if you haven't read the one about W.W.J.D. and Chic-Fil-A go do it, it will help make some of this a little more clear. Let's start though with exactly what happened last night...

Holy Spirit. That sums it up, 100% accurately. That little room we were in last night, about 30 or so people, was absolutely filled with the Holy Spirit. We opened with prayer, then some worship. Man, at one point during about the second or third song I began to pray, and not for myself. The things I prayed for were that my brothers, Chris and Aaron, and the rest of the church plant team would continue to seek guidance, wisdom, leadership, truth, understanding, peace, and direction. I prayed that God would give them desire, motivation, strength, endurance, and impact. He answered right then and there. I was overwhelmed by the presence of the Holy Spirit, it gave me chills. I felt like God was telling me, reassuring me, that what these brothers of mine were being called to do was going to be bigger than anything we could fathom. I don't mean bigger in the terms of size, but bigger in impact. That God was going to rock Columbus, IN because of #NeedaNameChurch. I couldn't wait to hear what Chris had to say, I was already incredibly moved by the worship he led...

Then it happened. Chris got up in front of us, and started to speak... and I don't mean that he said words, I mean he spoke to us. Straight from the heart, truth and wisdom that GOD himself placed there. Chris spoke with authority, authority not to be confused with arrogance. He didn't speak as if he knew everything, in fact he admitted that he wasn't qualified to plant a church, that he believes no one is really qualified, but with God it's not about qualifications. There are a couple of things that really excited me about what Chris said, and this is where it starts to relate to my post from yesterday. The vision for this church is to love everyone. They want to be a church that presents the gospel in a real way, and shoves it in people's faces. They want people in their church that want to know Jesus, that love Jesus, that have no idea who Jesus is because, as Chris said, everyone matters. I think it was a testament to what this church is going to accomplish as far as disciple making goes that Chris started off with talking about what church plant was NOT about. It was not about getting people's money, not about stealing away people from other churches.. it was about loving people, reaching people, and answering the call that Christ put on two guys' hearts. It's also an answer to what I was so frustrated with yesterday, it was God saying "I hear you".

I had been praying for quite some time about helping Chris and Aaron in any way I could with the church plant. I was hesitant to approach them myself, so I waited for an opportunity. Last night was that opportunity. I went up to Chris after and told him I was all-in. I wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself, and living for someone bigger than myself. What that looks like-- I don't know. I do know I am excited to see what this is going to transform into. I have already personally witnessed the way this vision has transformed the lives of the people involved in the planning. I have seen immense growth in Chris, Aaron and many others including my best friend. It pushed me to want to focus more on the things I need to be doing for Christ, for myself in Christ. It made me want to pursue growth of a more intimate relationship with Jesus. For that, I am very thankful.

Be on the lookout, there are going to be a lot more posts about #NeedaNameChurch, about conversations that I'm sure I will have with Chris and Aaron, about the way God is preparing to rock this city, and about direction for our lives. This isn't just about the local church, it's about the universal church. God is going to use Columbus, IN to help change the world, and grow the Kingdom. I am excited, and anxious.

#NeedaNameChurch coming to Columbus, IN Easter 2015 --- and seriously, they are still waiting on a name!

Grace and Peace


W.W.J.D. and Chic-Fil-A


I've been doing a lot of thinking about that guy. Man, oh man, is HE a legit dude. Seriously. I want to start striving to be more like Him. I was thinking about this today at work actually... about how big of a sinner I am, about how much He loves me, about how unworthy I am of His grace and love. It's astonishing. I mean HE died so the world could be forgiven.. not just Jewish people, or Gentiles, or me or you... but the WHOLE WORLD! It made me think about that feeling we get when we do something for other people, like we let them go ahead of us at the grocery store, or get over in traffic... and how it feels when someone thanks us or waves for doing those things... or even how angry I get when someone doesn't wave at me when I let them over in front of me-- and yes, that is something I struggle with greatly. Why does it matter, why am I in such a hurry that one car length is going to ruin my drive. If Jesus could say to the WORLD, go ahead of me, let me die in your place... let me take the fall for YOUR sins, why can't I be more understanding when someone needs, yet doesn't necessarily ask, to go ahead of me? The last few weeks I've tried to start being really intentional about being relational. Relationship is everything. Now, when I say intentional about being relational I mean that in a variety of ways-- intentional in my relationship with the Christ, with my family, my friends, my coworkers, even people that really annoy me. Look at the people that Jesus spent His time with... most of His time was spent with sinners. People that were considered the "scum" of the Earth. People that are just like me.

Too often I get caught up in sin, but not in the way I should.. not in my own sin but the sin of others... as if I'm some how better than other people. That is the biggest load of CRAP anyone could ever carry with them. Jesus never inherently said "We can't talk, you're a sinner" or "Hey man, I like you and all, but you are a SINNER.. I'm not". No he welcomed and accepted everyone. Because all sins are equal. I don't want to get into a political debate, and I'm not taking a side either way... but really what's the deal with all this Chic-fil-A drama? Remember that craze from the 90's, the one that involved little bracelets, keychains, even t-shirts that said W.W.J.D.? I wear one to this day, I've been wearing it everyday since I returned from a men's retreat, because it's a reminder I need and the funny thing is, I know the answer to that question... What would Jesus do? LOVE. Love people, Love God, Love community. Does that mean we can't disagree? Absolutely not. It does mean that we need to focus on the matters at hand. What I find inherently sad about the whole Chicken fiasco is that people are supporting/boycotting an organization based on the media's interpretation of a man's opinion. On the one hand, Chic-fil-A never said "We won't hire gays, serve gays, or give them coupons" so why are gay rights activists freaking out about this thing? He stated an opinion, really answered a direct question asking for an opinion, about family. I don't see anything wrong with that... but sadly there are a lot of people boycotting Chic-fil-A because the media made it out to be an anti-gay, Christian establishment. On the other hand... there are also people eating there, and supporting them because of that media portrayal. Christians, what are we doing? Aren't we called to LOVE all people? The way Jesus did. Jesus didn't ostracize people because of their sexual orientation, their financial status, or the way they looked. He loved them. My big issue with SOME of the Christian stances on this matter is that we are forgetting something. All SINS are equal. There's nothing different about the sin of a man loving a man from a man lusting after a woman. A sin, is a sin, is a sin. Matthew 7:3-5 "And why worry about a speck in your friend's eye when you have a log in your own? How can you thinkg of saying to your friend 'Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye' when you can't see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend's eye." Maybe if we focuses on our own sins, instead of the sins of others, we'd find some conviction. I'm not going to discuss my opinion on homosexuality. But I do want to discuss something about Christianity.

In Ephesians 5:1 we are called to "Be imitators of Christ", so as CHRISTians shouldn't we be completely focused on loving other people the way Christ does. I personally can't think of anything better to strive for. If we would just love each other this world would be a completely different place. I truly believe that. Now, there is also something to be said for some scriptural integrity here. Granted "love the sinner, hate the sin" is not a bible verse that can be found all in one place, but it is an IDEA that can be found in the bible. The first part "love the sinner" could be supported with Matthew 22:39 "Love your neighbor as yourself", which calls us to love others the way we love ourselves, if we can love ourselves despite the fact that we are sinners... we should love other sinners too. Romans 5:8 says "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us" take that verse from Romans, add to it Ephesians 5:1 (referenced above) and we are called to love like Christ did. As for the "hate the sin" portion of that phrase look at Romans 12:9 "Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good" SIN is EVIL, so yes we should hate sin but at the same time we have no right to pass judgement. Roman 2:1-4 says "You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Now we know that God's judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God's judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?". We have no right to pass judgment, that's something God tells us verbatim.

I didn't want to get involved in this rant, and there are going to be people, even Christians that disagree with my stance on this I'm sure. But I'm backing up my opinion with scripture. Both sides have misguided intentions. That's what happens when we allow the media to guide us instead of the Holy Spirit. Instead of worrying about chicken, let's worry about love...


Grace and Peace