“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”- Ian Maclaren
With the rise of social media, we are connected to each other like we’ve never been before. One tweet could send information across the world in an instant. We can get our news in one second or by one click. I can know from Instagram what my friend is doing across the world. I can go on Instagram story or see a Facebook status and know what everyone is up to.
We are so connected it seems, yet it has become easier with Social Media to put on a mask. We put happy selfies on Instagram; we can make silly faces on SnapChat with its many filters; we can put beautiful pictures of what we have on Facebook. Yet, deep down for some of us are lives are falling apart. We are not OK but for some reason we try to put up a facade that everything is great, when everything is not.
We’ve had small groups for awhile now at GGC. It’s been our hope that through them it would foster relationships and discipleship. Through these small groups we would help people become confident in what they believe and why they believed it- and in turn it would lead to mission. We have used a method of reading books by great Christian authors like Tim Keller, Philip Yancey, Dan Kimball and others. We would meet every 2 weeks (ideally)- reading one chapter. Our hope was that each individual would wrestle individually with the chapter- asking questions, taking notes, highlighting what they thought was good and then in 2 weeks we would come together and learn from each other in community.
This past week was interesting because we had 2 different small groups that met on different days; that were reading two different books yet in both we wrestled with and discussed the same exact question. The question of why didn’t we care enough that our friends and family don’t know Jesus? Have we become too comfortable- too complacent about it- that we’ve stopped praying for our friends, praying for family? Shouldn’t that bother us- to cause us to at least share?
I was reminded of that video from Penn Jillette (he has a Las Vegas magic show; he was on Friends when he sold Joey encyclopedias)- who is an atheist yet respects when Christians share their faith. He says something in the video that is quite convicting, “how much do you have to hate someone to not proselytize? Like if you really believe that eternity is at stake wouldn’t you want to share” (my paraphrase). I saw this video years ago and it was well worth revisiting. (The video link is in the footnote below- please check it out)
We need to start praying for our friends again. We need to start taking advantage when opportunities arise. I’m not advocating obnoxious witnessing methods that we see so often, but I am advocating starting the conversation again with people that we have relationships with. Being intentional. Being prepared. Being respectful. I think it’s worth doing.
I’ve been thinking about it quite a bit and most likely it will become a sermon series where I can articulate and expand my thoughts more holistically. However, I am genuinely worried about the state of discipleship in the church.
Posted by David Cay on February 1, 2017 at 12:34 pm
I often wonder why it is so hard to trust God. I always feel a hesitancy, a lack of confidence, always questioning whether this is the right thing to do. I feel a deep sense of insecurity, always expecting the worst will happen. Yet I feel this pull, this invitation to trust. Don’t get me wrong, I want to trust Him, I want to feel secure in Him. But I always feel this tension.
Posted by David Cay on December 8, 2016 at 12:20 pm
My 6 year old son attends a nearby Catholic School and one day during bedtime prayer, he decided to pray the ‘Hail Mary’ before going to bed. He recited the prayer exactly- I was thoroughly impressed that he was able to do it. For his age, I thought it would be hard to do, but he did it with such ease and confidence.
Depending on who you talk to many Christians from a variety of church traditions and denominations have different opinions about Mary. Some put her on really high pedestal and from the way they talk you would think they put her on the same level as Jesus himself. Meanwhile, others in my opinion have too low of a view of Mary. They seem disenchanted and offended that people pray to her- albeit I remember in Bible College I asked my Catholic friend this very question and she responded that they aren’t praying to Mary- instead they are asking Mary to pray for them just like how I would ask you to pray for me in my moment of need. It was a very interesting response.
Posted by David Cay on November 24, 2016 at 10:01 pm
I hate ironing my clothes. I find it inconvenient especially when you are in a rush to wherever you have to go. As I ironed my shirt I saw my son watching me curiously and I thought it would be a good time to teach him something – a moment to say something wise. I told my 3 year old not to touch the iron because it can get really hot and it would burn his hand. He nodded his head like he understood and said “yes Daddy, I won’t touch that”.
Posted by David Cay on September 21, 2016 at 5:50 pm
As Christian kid growing up in the 90’s and in the early 2000’s, it never occurred to me that the Bible was one big story. I was never taught that the Bible had an overall narrative arc and plot. Most Bible Studies that I went to and the sermons that I heard at church only concentrated on a certain verse or passage, which sometimes dangerously had the potential to put a passage out of context. It wasn’t until I heard a sermon by the great Timothy Keller where he wonderfully put together how the Bible fuses together as one giant narrative arc. Now don’t get me wrong focussing on a passage isn’t inherently bad or wrong. I just feel that sometimes it misses out- that it isn’t complete. It doesn’t touch on the beauty of context and the beauty of the passage illuminated with the rest of the story
Most Christians would say yes, of course he loves us. Seems like a simple question to answer. When I was a little boy, one of the first things I learned from my parents was that Jesus loved me. My mom’s favorite song was Jesus Loves Me, she would sing it to us when we were kids- in fact, when my kids were babies she would sing and hum the tune before putting them to sleep. My mom put a “Jesus Loves the Little Children” poster in our room. So if anything, we knew- we knew that Jesus loved us.