Skip to main content

Paychecks and Gifts

"For the payoff of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."
Romans 6:23

The word here for "payoff" is oywnion which means "wages" or basically my paycheck for all of the sinning that I accomplish throughout the day.  And how true it is that I am working tirelessly at sinning each day hour after hour minute after minute.  I'm well trained.  

I truly believe that our work as followers of Jesus is to bring "the Kingdom of God" into this life.  Basically, live like Jesus (that whole patience, kindness, love your enemies thing) and I suck at it.  I didn't do any of that on the way to work today.  I tried, believe me.  But these Kansans drive soooo sloooowww.  Grrrr.  

So somewhere within all of the theology that I admittedly don't understand there is the God-established rule that anyone who "sins" deserves eternal death.  And I admittedly don't understand "sin" (although I think it's as simple as doing something you know you probably shouldn't do or NOT doing something you think you probably should do).  And I admittedly don't understand eternal death because I'm not even sure I believe in that.

But more than anything else, I strive to understand the "gift" of God.  Because it's not anything that I have to work for.  I understand that perfectly.  I don't have to work all day and night to receive a "payoff" of life.  I wonder what would happen if I worked tirelessly for life and love?

Might be a worthy experiment.


Popular posts from this blog

To those who said it wasn't abuse

It wasn't abuse, you said.
He was out of his head
crying and yelling and throwing
himself down kicking
tantrums over little things like
the tightness of a shoe
the color of a plastic cup he wanted
red we gave him blue.
The VHS player wouldn't play,
the certain condition of a day
it was raining or sunny or dry
you said you were just parenting him
getting him in line to mind
building character, you said.

It wasn't abuse, they said.
Just parenting.  A child of unruly sorts
he doesn't look us in the eye he's
disrespectful.  Doesn't tuck in his shirts
unkempt.  Doesn't sit still during prayer
sinful and ungodly a preacher's kid
you know how they are well,
not my kid.

So he would be taught respect
and godliness through discipline
a scriptural concept he would
Honor His Father he would
want to, want to, obey.
and his mother would
Honor His Father by shutting up
and covering up the little
legs slashed and bloodied
welts and bruises and broken
kitchen utensils …

What it means when a narcissistic pastor says, "I love the church"

I ran across this article while going through a rough place in my life.  It had profound meaning for me in dealing with some of the individuals in my life that have narcissistic traits. The article highlights the fact that when a narcissist says, “I love you,” he really means that he loves the way that you (fill in the blank): take care of his needs, focus your energy on him, submit, etc. Individuals that have been in relationships with narcissists often admit to feeling crazy, not recognizing the abuse while it was occurring, and to keeping secrets to cover for his abuse, infidelity, etc.  I wonder if this is what many people are recognizing in the #exevangelical movement.  Because as I was going through this article again, I began to realize that many of the narcissistic traits could be applied to the many pastors and men in church leadership that I have known through the years. Being in church ministry for twelve years, I became proficient at silence and lies to cover the behavior…

To "speak the truth in love" does not mean "reprimand"

"...speaking the truth in love..." Ephesians 4:15
Notice the "dot, dot, dot," before and after that phrase?  But how many times have you heard it as a full sentence?  Speak the Truth in love.  As a full sentence, it loses all context.  And how often is this phrase used as an excuse to reprimand another "in love" and tell them about their multitude of sins?
The New Living Translation has a completely different take on this phrase.  It states, "we will hold to the truth in love."  Now, that changes it a bit, doesn't it?  That makes the action about me and not about me acting on another.  
In context, Ephesians 4 is talking about the Body of Christ and how we must work to grow up and mature in the Lord.  "Then we will no longer be like children, forever changing our minds about what we believe..."  The work is for each of us to grow up and cling to the Lord's love.  
And what Truth are we clinging to?  It is the truth that we are d…