There's just something about bowed heads that makes you take notice.
I've noticed it and you have too — people everywhere are bowing their heads. In every restaurant, on every college campus, from cubicles to crosswalks, at church and at traffic lights folks appear virtually powerless to resist the compelling urge to pause and bow their heads. In reality, worship is taking place to the god of … the smartphone.
You do it and I do it. We text, tweet, post, shop, order dinner, answer emails, check social media, catch up on scores, follow politics, entertain ourselves — we even photograph our amazing meals! more >>
In the upcoming biblical epic "Peter – The Redemption," viewers will embark on an inspirational journey of faith. The film stars Emmy-nominated actor John Rhys-Davies ("Lord of the Rings," "Shogun" and "Indiana Jones") and Stephen Baldwin ("God's Club" and "Faith of Our Fathers"), and will arrive on DVD and Digital HD on Aug. 2 from Cinedigm.
The faith-based film is the retelling of the biblical narrative of Apostle Peter during the first Christian persecution. Also featured in the film are actors Steve Byers ("Smallville," "The Man From High Castle") and Bobbie Phillips ("The X Files," "Last Flight Out").
"Peter – The Redemption" follows Peter (Rhys-Davies) as he is tormented by his denial of Christ. Having spent his life attempting to atone for his failures, Peter's true devotion as a witness for the Lord is tested yet again as he faces certain death at the hands of the cruel Roman Emperor Nero (Baldwin). The epic questions are: Will Peter falter again and let his weakness betray him or will he rise up triumphant in his final moment? more >>
John Phillip Newell, in his powerful book Christ of the Celts, tells a story about sitting with a leader of the Pueblo tribe in New Mexico. He was speaking to this tribal elder about the Celtic tradition of "listening for the heartbeat of God" in all creation — a way of seeing that comes from the Apostle John, who, according to tradition, leaned against the chest of Christ at the Last Supper and therefore "heard the heartbeat of God."
Newell told the tribal elder that it's essential that we move in our world listening and looking for the heartbeat — a very countercultural way of looking at things in our Christian world, where it seems we would rather tell people what freedom MUST look like and sound like — what language it must speak and songs it must sing.
After Newell finished waxing poetic about this concept, the Pueblo elder said gently, "Yes. We too know the heartbeat." He then began to beat out an ancient rhythm on a drum he was holding on his lap. more >>
Jan Crouch's death, announced by her son and Trinity Broadcasting Network Tuesday morning, has sent a flood of condolences and fond memory posts on social media, including some from well-known Christian leaders.
Jentezen Franklin, senior pastor of Free Chapel in Georgia and New York Times best-selling author, took to Instagram with his touching tribute. "Jan Crouch will always be remembered for her love for Jesus and her love for souls. What she and her husband did in building @trinitybroadcastingnetwork is nothing less than remarkable. She gave me my start, I will forever be grateful.@mattandlauriecrouch and family we love you, we stand with you, and we are praying for you!"
Jan and her late husband, Paul Crouch, together built the world's largest Christian cable network and changed the course of Christian television for over 40 years. Last week, Jan Crouch was hospitalized after suffering a massive stroke, and her son and TBN successor, Mat Crouch, announced early Tuesday morning that she passed away at the age of 78.> more >>
It was recently reported that Christopher Hitchens, the famous atheist apologist and author, "was contemplating conversion" around the time of his death in 2011. If one is familiar with the vehemence that Hitchens often derided Christianity, this is quite a surprise. It is also a wonderful illustration of the exquisitely paradoxical mystery of God's grace.
I am reminded of something that happened this past August, when I had the opportunity to engage in a lively debate with a twenty-something guy whom I encountered by chance (or was it Providence?) at an "atheist booth" at Balboa Park in San Diego. There were a number of different booths set up in the park that day, some selling jewelry, others food items. When I first saw the "Ask an Atheist" booth, I was a bit startled. It seemed strange to have a booth dedicated to a negation, a lack of something positive like belief.
But I knew I had to talk to the atheists. An "atheist booth" is something that is begging for attention, it seems to me. To advertise being an atheist in such a public way practically screams, "Please prove me wrong!" Plus, I love a good debate. more >>
Isaiah 54:17 gives us a wonderful promise from God. It says, "'No weapon that is formed against you will succeed; and every tongue that rises against you in judgment you will condemn. This [peace, righteousness, security, and triumph over opposition] is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from Me,' says the Lord" (AMP).
No one likes to be judged or criticized by others, and this verse clearly says "every tongue that rises against you in judgment you will condemn." The question is, how do we show those who judge and criticize us unjustly that they are wrong? Do we defend ourselves? Do we get mad at them and say equally bad things about them, trying to get back at them? No, none of that works and it's not what this scripture is talking about.
Jesus is our ultimate example of how we should live, and the Bible says in 1 Peter 2:23 (NLT), "He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered. He left his case in the hands of God, who always judges fairly." When someone comes against us, we're often tempted to defend ourselves and say something like, "You're not going to talk to me like that!" Or "If you think you're going to treat me that way, then I'm going to do this to you!" more >>