Larry Kredier’s book on The Cry For Spiritual Fathers and Mothers says it all. It is a cry. The deep longing and need of the human heart for love, acceptance, affirmation, and guidance is a part of our makeup as human beings and it is no lesser needed on a spiritual level than on a physical. The absence of fathers and mothers is acutely felt in today’s leadership. Young leaders go from conference to conference to learn as much as they can about the “how to’s” and “must do’s” of ministry, but a void is present if you look deep enough.
I would suggest that this void is also present in the lives of those senior to us in the faith. In our Disney church society where many on stage are under 30, the older generation in the Western world often feels too geriatric to continue to make a difference and their wisdom is many times unappreciated. One of the older women in my church came to me yesterday and said, “Pastor Cindy, give me something to do.” Though we were joking around about her helping me with the menial task of moving books, I knew she was wanting something deeper, something more significant that she could do with her life, time and experience.
What struck me about the mentoring relationship between Paul and Timothy was how personally Paul saw mentoring and the deep love and care he had for those he mentored by calling them his sons. They were family to him and he was there to help guide them but also to receive from them as well. He was proud of them and their work and that pride gave them a deep sense of affirmation and confidence.
There exists today a desperate cry for fathers and mothers from this next generation. I, for one, will respond.
Not every opinion needs to be shared.
Not every idea is revolutionary.
Bridle your tongue.
Conserve your energy.
Choose your moments.
Wait on the Holy Spirit.
“We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check.”
-James, the Apostle
Holy Scripture is God’s self-revelation, an insight into his nature.
It transcends culture and transforms the reader.
It is inerrant and forever relevant.
Can we hear what it is saying?
Even if your hands are shaking
Even as the eyes are closing
Do it with a heart wide open
Say what you need to say
Tell your loved ones you love them while you can. Encourage those around you.
Speak your ideas and dreams out into the world.
Don’t hold back!
NEW YORK, I weep for your baby girls and baby boys, fully formed, yet defenseless. They are a breath away from seeing the light of day. Oh, the excruciating pain they will experience. Their bright futures snatched from them by 38 senators who themselves are allowed to experience life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Will these children even receive a proper burial? Sheer brutality. The cry of these unborn babies will be heard. They will make the small bizarre victory shout in the senate sound like a mouse before a lion. They will not be silenced. They are crying out for justice! I cry out with them. #StolenDestiny #SickAndShameful #DoNotBeSilent
MORNING MEDITATION- Please join me!
I raise a hallelujah, in the presence of my enemies 🥁
I raise a hallelujah, louder than the unbelief 📣
I raise a hallelujah, my weapon is a melody 🎼
I raise a hallelujah, heaven comes to fight for me 💪🏽
May you be encouraged and strengthened by God today to raise a hallelujah in your most challenging situations and see God’s hand of mercy come to your rescue. Today, my weapon is a melody.
Sing the song that God has written on your heart!
“We look for God where we expect him to be-church, weddings, funerals and the like. It is difficult to imagine that God could be present with us in time of failure or questioning, in moments of hurt or rebellion. But God uses the entire landscape of our lives to craft and mature us- the good, the bad and the ugly of our stories.” (Reese&Loane, Deep Mentoring)
God’s involvement in our story covers all aspects of who we are. He is intricately aware of our every thought, fear, desire and dream. God’s awareness of our destiny is made clear through the prophet Jeremiah, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;” (Jer. 1:5). David, king and psalmist, was keenly aware of God’s concern for man, “what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them?” (Psalm 8:4).
Hope rises in our hearts as a result of knowing that we are not alone and forgotten on this planet. The possibility of fulfilling our destinies lies in us not only understanding that God is in our stories, but that he invites us to join in his.
Dunn and Sundene establish “the three pillars of identity formation: love, work and ideology” (110) as a pattern among emerging leaders and I believe that the balance between the three make up a healthy identity; each one is equal to the other and plays a vital role. Love played out in our relationships; work as an expression of our God-given talents and skills; ideology as our belief in God and how we perceive and engage the world.
I can think of no better time than now for Paul Tillich’s message of “the courage to be” to be propagated in the fashion of Dr. Martin Luther King (124). When speaking of identity, I find one of its most challenging tests comes when you stand for what you believe in while still respecting others. Dr. King’s presence of mind while in the midst of chaos and riots was astounding. The depth of his conviction based on God’s Word and the dignity of every human being speaks to my heart of a man who knew God and who made a righteous stand in his unjust social context. Civility and mutual respect are being sidelined as an all-out assault is being waged for the young emerging mind.
The age distribution being nineteen to thirty-five for the emerging adult surprised me (17). I wondered if this wasn’t based more on Western cultures as in other cultures it would seem that the age would be younger. This leads me to consider how the emerging adult sees and engages responsibility in a generally narcissistic and noncommittal Western environment.
Dunn, Richard R. and Jana L. Sundene. 2012. Shaping the Journey of Emerging Adults: Life- giving Rhythms for Spiritual Transformation. Downer Grove, Il : InterVarsity Press.
Culture cradles the story of each people group and is the blueprint of identity. To erase culture is to erase identity. In an interview with Live Science, Cristina De Rossi, an anthropologist at Barnet and Southgate College in London, provides us with this definition, “Culture encompasses religion, food, what we wear, how we wear it, our language, marriage, music, what we believe is right or wrong, how we sit at the table, how we greet visitors, how we behave with loved ones, and a million other things.”
As a former missionary to Spain and a current student of global leadership, I champion the preservation of local culture as an indicator of the traditions and beliefs of each nation which make them unique. I lived in Spain for almost 3 decades and the people and culture of Spain enriched my life as I respected and adapted to their customs.
¡Viva España! #flamenco #olé #arte