God, Terrorism & You

AUDIO VERSION: YouTube  Podbean

As solo terrorist attacks dominate the daily news headlines with increasing frequency, it’s a great time to think about what you are supposed to be learning from all of these suicide bombers, random stabbers, and crazed gunmen.  The psychological factors that turn Average Joe Citizen into a screaming assailant really aren’t so mysterious.  People always have logical reasons for what they do, and whether it’s revenge, desperation, or dreams of a better life in eternity, the final results look the same to the public: some random guy violently assaulted a bunch of people without warning and now some people are dead and others are so horribly injured that they wish they were dead.  Terrorism is, well, terrifying.  So how is it affecting you when you pull up the news and read that another attack has occurred?  Have you ever been caught in one of these gruesome events, or have you known someone who was?  Noticing your own level of angst is quite important, because the more upset you are by these events, the more there is for you to learn.  You see, when it comes to your own spiritual development, there’s a principle that’s quite useful to bear in mind: if it upsets you, then it’s partly about you.  Continue reading

Understanding Verbal Blessing & Cursing: So Much Hype, So Little Power

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AUDIO VERSION: YouTube  Podbean

In this post, you will learn everything you need to know about the human practice of verbally blessing and cursing other humans.

HOW HUMANS VIEW BLESSING & CURSING

There are two main ways that humans view blessing and cursing.  For non-serious users, the phrase “Bless you!” is the same as saying “Thank you!” or “I like you!” or “Wow, you seem like such a nice person that I hope things go well for you in the future.”  Alternately, to say “Curse you!” is a way of saying “I hate you!” or “You’re such a jerk!” or “I hope rotten things happen to you because you’ve upset me!”  For non-serious users, blessing and cursing people or objects is just a way of expressing personal joy or anger. Continue reading

Praying for Other People: Why It’s a Bad Idea

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AUDIO VERSION: YouTube  Podbean

In our material, we teach you not to pray for other people.  This includes praying for God to heal, save, and comfort other people.  Many Christians find such teaching to be quite disturbing.  So what’s the deal?  If we claim to be Christians–which we do–then how can we have a problem with praying for others?  The answer is simple: we care immensely about pleasing God, and once treating God well is your top priority, praying for other people needs to go.  That’s the short answer.  Now we’ll give you the long one. Continue reading

Worship Bombs: KYRIE ELEISON by Chris Tomlin

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When people who speak different languages start socializing with each other on a regular basis, it doesn’t take long before they start merging their languages.  Each fellow steals some words and phrases from the other fellow’s language and he starts teaching those new phrases to his pals.  The English language is a fabulous example of this.  If you buy an English dictionary,  you’ll find that it contains many words that aren’t English at all, but English speakers have adopted them with such enthusiasm, that they now consider them part of normal English.  Take sauerkraut, for example.  There’s nothing English about that word, it’s totally German.  If English speakers wanted to keep their language pure, they could redefine what sauerkraut is in English terms.  But if you go into an American food market, you won’t find cans labeled as containing “pickled shreds of cabbage.”  Even though that’s what sauerkraut means in English, the Germans make it sound so much tastier by the way they say it, so English speaking Americans have stolen the term.   Continue reading

Sicking Jesus on the Devil: The Christian Addiction to Bossing God

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AUDIO VERSION: YouTube  Podbean

You’ve got a beefy guard dog who you want to teach to attack anyone who irritates you.  First you need to choose a special phrase that is going to be your attack command—perhaps an old standard like “sic ‘em!”  Then you need to spend many hours teaching your dog to associate certain behaviors with that special command.  It’s a lot of work training animals to behave the way that you want them to behave in certain moments.  How convenient it would be if your dog came pre-trained.  Imagine if the first day you met him, he said to you, “Hey, if you ever want me to attack someone for you, just say sic ‘em, and I’ll take them down.”  How sweet would that be? Continue reading

Responding to Your Child’s Serious Illness: Help for Christian Parents

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AUDIO VERSION: YouTube  Podbean

You’re a parent and you find out that your child is ill.  Very ill. Doctors are telling you that the recovery rate for this particular illness isn’t very high.  The only treatments they’re offering are things that you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy.  Your kid is scared and looking at you with those big, anxious eyes.  Parents are supposed to be able to fix anything, but you can’t fix this.  Parents are supposed to always know what to say, but you’re speechless.  Parents are supposed to be able to save the day, and you’re feeling like a total failure.  It’s time to reach out for some help, so you hop online and start cruising through Christian websites looking for advice on how to handle your situation.  It doesn’t take long to notice that a lot of them are telling you the same thing.  This isn’t God’s will.  Disease comes from the devil.  Healing is just a prayer away.  We have a big God: if you believe, you will receive.  There’s power in numbers, power in repetition, power in holy water, power in fasting, power in chanting Bible verses.  Tell God what you want enough times and He’ll surely do it.  Continue reading