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NEXT

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Here we are again…

Another inciting incident.
Opinions flow like a river at flood stage.

“You don’t know the facts?” “You missed the point” “You’re ignorant”

As our nation labors under the weight of serious systemic issues  we choose to herald our cyber-bullhorns, which are more about shouting than listening and resolving.

Broad-brushed soundbites of polarized rhetoric.

And then…

NEXT

We saunter off to the next thing showing that we really don’t care at a deep level about the current thing, it’s just the popular outrage. Sure, it seems important enough to flame and shout out loudly what we think (as if we have perfect-objective reality firmly in our grasp), but not important enough to get off the couch and actually DO Something…DO justice.

It amazes me that so many of us think a perfectly worded tweet is the final word on an incident that results in lost lives, lost income, lost values and even lost humanity.

“Surely my Facebook rebuttal is enough to end generations of racism”

“Surely my #hashtag is enough to end corporate greed”

“Surely my instagram picture will be enough to prove a 911 conspiracy”

and then…NEXT…

Have we become the NEXT generation? Have we become a NEXT culture?

In other words, is our current outrage more about entertainment and consumerism than it is about the actual tragedy or incident?

I think they way we respond and then quickly disengage moving onto the NEXT thing reveals an apathy and a narcissism that perpetuates systemic issues.

We live at the surface, and the problems we face are much deeper than the “facts.” And I know someone will more than likely cry out against that last statement.

Courts have to deal with facts, we as a society must deal with truths that lead to justice acknowledging the facts.

Today, consider how fast you move onto the NEXT thing.

Today consider how fast you move on from the LAST thing.

Today consider whether or not an incident will incite you to use your bullhorn only, or actually get off the couch and enter into the pain and brokeness as a healer and helper.

A closing thought to ponder from Martin Luther King Jr.:

“The Negro’s great stumbling block in the stride toward freedom is not the White Citizens Councilor or the Ku Klux Klanner but the white moderate who is more devoted to order than to justice.”

In light of the current #ferguson battlefield, consider the deeper conversation that is needed before you go NEXT.

 

 

The Revelation part seven: Sardis, dead or alive?

Jesus did so much more than die for my sins. If my understanding of the Gospel stops there, I am missing the point of why Jesus came. He didn’t give His life so I could fulfill my dreams, become a more moral person or live unaffectedly. The cross is a lightning rod of choice…a choice of living or dying…it cries out: ‘come die that you might live.’

The church in Sardis was a church that had a reputation for being a happening place…but even though they seemed successful, Jesus’ diagnosis was that they were dead. Sometimes www think we have it so dialed in that we don’t need anything, and we don’t think that anything bad can happen. We start believing our own press, fall asleep at the wheel and then disaster hits. Jesus definition of an alive church is very different from the definition we have…let’s become a church that makes God smile.

revelation 7 sardis teaching notes

revelation 7 journey group notes

 

Revelation Week 7 from Snoqualmie Valley Alliance on Vimeo.

The Revelation part six: Thyatira, the tolerance test

“Truth cannot be sacrificed at the altar of pretended tolerance…Real tolerance, is deference for all ideas, not indifference to the truth.” – Ravi Zacharias

To the church at Thyatira Jesus said that they were more tolerant than He was…that’s something that got my attention! God loves His church too much to let her slouch her way from His presence.

revelation 6 thyatira teaching notes

revelation 6 journey group notes

 

Revelation Week 6 from Snoqualmie Valley Alliance on Vimeo.