|Photo Credit: Moinikon|
Why Christian Kids Leave the Faith by Tim Challies
"For some people Christianity is outright rejected and replaced by an alternate system of beliefs. For others, though, Christianity is merely displaced by competing passions, concerns, or emphases. They may commit themselves to success in business and allow religion to take a back seat, or they may passionately pursue sports and find it more exciting and fulfilling than their faith. Some endure times of trial or torment and in the midst of those troubles find their faith has fallen by the wayside. In either case, faith, once an important part of their life, falls in significance until it fades far into the background. It’s less that these people reject their faith and more that they lose interest in it or even forget about it."Getting My Friend Back 25 Years Later by Joshua Rogers
This is a touching story of how a grown man was spurred on by his young daughters to make an effort to reconnect with his estranged best friend from middle school. Get your tissues ready.
Thoughts on Sharing our Stories by Marilyn Gardner (A Life Overseas)
"The person who has read a book cannot claim experiential knowledge. A person who has spent ten days on a cruise ship and has visited nine ports in those ten days is hardly an expert on every country where they have stopped. Yet they sometimes claim to be. The person who has gone on a short-term mission or volunteer trip needs to be careful to tell their story with integrity and honesty, not as an expert, but as a learner. It is easy to make broad assessments of places and people based on a limited view and a single story. At the same time, when we travel and when we live in places, we do experience the world through a different lens, and we do want to communicate those experiences. Much of my life is a learning process of how to communicate what I have experienced and be fair and wise within that communication."The Headache and Hope of Multi-Ethnic Ministry by Adam Mabry (The Gospel Coalition)
"I’m not saying every church has to meet some false standard of diversity. Nor am I suggesting churches mostly composed of one ethnic group are bad. Yet if any church isn’t concerned with the other tribes—unconcerned to reach them, to know them, and to be known by them—how is that not the same kind of self-preferential partiality of which Peter was guilty? We carry the lunch tray of our cultural preferences to the table filled with persons like us because we just don’t want the headache of dealing with the other."A Timeline of Black Christianity Before the Civil War by A.G. Miller (Christianity Today)
Here is an interesting timeline of some of the key moments of African American history as it relates to Christianity.
How Children Learn Who’s In And Who’s Out by Natasha Sistrunk Robinson (The Redbud Post)
"As an African American child, my mother taught me about race. She didn’t teach me so I would hate the other. She taught me so I would be informed, so I could better understand history and attempt to process why someone might think differently, and so I would have examples of what was and is a righteous response to hateful people. From her teaching and example, I learned my responsibility to educate myself and to advocate on behalf of others. As an African American parent of an African American daughter, this is part of the teaching and training that takes place in my home. Education about racial injustices is a necessity for her survival, and it was a necessity for mine. That’s why my mother taught me, that’s why I teach my daughter, and why I don’t want her to be colorblind."Jennie Allen and the Longterm Impact of College Ministry by Tim Casteel
"College Ministers: What you are doing matters. Meeting with hundreds of disinterested freshmen to find a handful that want to know Jesus and make Him known. Turning over a multitude of rocks to find one or two gems. Teaching students how and why to read God’s Word. Discipling students who will make disciples. We rarely get to see the fruit of what we so laboriously sow. Students graduate and get married and get jobs and move off. And we go back to meeting with hundreds of disinterested freshmen to find a handful…"