Love Hurts

“Much-Afraid, I have already warned you that Love and Pain go together, for a time at least. If you would know Love, you  must know pain too.” -The Shepherd (Hind’s Feet on High Places, by Hannah Hurnard)

I didn’t want to love her. I wanted to harden my heart because I knew her time in my life would be brief. But somehow, when a baby comes into your life, it is almost impossible to not feel something. Read More


To Rejoice or Not to Rejoice

Hillary Clinton lost the election.

I am not sorry.

I’m not happy Trump won, but I am quite glad Hillary lost.

I still am confident that voting for Trump would have been wrong for me. I have very deep convictions in this area. Part of them have to do with my personal witness to my extended family members who see a vote for Trump as evidence of endorsement of racism and collusion with wretched character. I know the election will come up at Thanksgiving and I will have an opportunity to again witness to these cousins. However, my credibility with them would be shot if I had voted for Trump. He said stuff that was way out of line, horrid, inappropriate, rude, hateful – but the media blew every single thing he said out of proportion. A wise man would have kept his mouth shut instead of saying stupid stuff that gave the media a field day. A righteous man would have apologized specifically for hateful things he said in the past and would have refrained in the future. Trump didn’t, and so the media was able to paint him in a very awful light.

My cousins know where I stand on abortion, homosexuality, modesty, dating, movies, language, and a ton of other stuff. For me to have voted for a man who is practically the epitome of everything I stand against would make me seem like the world’s biggest hypocrite. Believing the “conservative” claims of such a man would make me seem like a fool. In their eyes, if Michelle voted for Trump then she must be a bigot, a hypocrite, and a fool and anything else she says is worthless. If they are going to think these things of me, I’d much rather it be because I won’t compromise any of my non-politically correct positions, not because I voted for Trump. It’s the same reason I don’t fly the confederate flag – not because it truly stands for slavery, but because so many people think it does. The subject of slavery and the civil war is very muddy. The issue of what the confederate flag stands for is a messy one. So, I don’t fly it. I also don’t plan to ever get a tattoo – not because not because of a much-debated verse in the Old Testament law, but because it would compromise my witness. Our culture views tattoos as a sign of rebellion against authority. That image does not fit the image I wish to convey as a follower of Christ. So much of our witness is more what people see about us, than what we say about us. For me, voting for Trump would have compromised my witness to at least 6 different unsaved people I love. It wasn’t the only reason for my decision, but it was an important one.

I recently saw the movie “Hacksaw Ridge.” It is amazing. It’s probably the only movie with language that I would ever recommend someone seeing in the theater rather than waiting to watch it with a filter. It is the true story of a conscientious objector who wants to serve in the military during WW2. Weird, right? He wants to go into battle as a medic and not carry a gun. As I watched this film Tuesday, I realized this movie was a personal parallel of my feelings about the election. I feel convicted “not to carry a gun,” so I didn’t vote for Trump. I still want to “help the war effort” so I did not stay home, but voted for a solid candidate and prayed throughout the election. However, I am thankful for the brave men and women around me who did not feel the same convictions, who did “carry their guns to stop Hitler,” who did vote for Trump and stopped Hillary.

I still think many people voted for Trump for the wrong reasons, and I worry about people who supported Trump whole-heartedly. But I am glad Hillary did not win.

52 a Year

“To gather with God’s people in united adoration of the Father is as necessary to the Christian life as prayer.” ― Martin Luther

According to that infallible morass of information (the all-knowing Google), 83% of Americans call themselves Christians. Yet only 20.4% of Americans attend church each week.

The reasons people stay home are varied: ill health, lack of sleep, discontentment with local churches, scheduling conflicts, kids, etc…

But with the possible exception of the first reason, those reasons are pretty weak excuses. Read More