Where Real Change Happens…

(Latest article at theFish.com) Even occasional readers of my humble ramblings know that the start of my faith narrative was mired in moralism. Our church was, without question, the denomination of “no”. Starting from that faulty foundation led me to years of sadness, tiredness and bondage. I replayed my long and fragmented journey to grace and freedom as I listened to a song from Hillside United titled, “From the Inside Out”. One thousand times I’ve failed Still your mercy remains Should I stumble again I’m caught in your grace Everlasting your light will shine when all else fades I remembered day after day of agonizing self-loathing because I kept failing. I did not understand His mercy nor did I believe I could fall on His grace. I was taught that such an attitude showed a lack of obedience and a dependence on “cheap grace”. Somehow I missed the message of Jesus to the religious hypocrites as I was influenced by
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Gotta Serve Somebody

(The latest iPod Devotional from theFish.com) Bob Dylan wrote some powerful songs about his faith journey in the late 70′s. One song he composed popped up on the iPod recently. “Gotta Serve Somebody” simply says that no matter how independent, self-sufficient or in control we might try to be we still serve something or somebody. But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed You’re gonna have to serve somebody Well, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord But you’re gonna have to serve somebody That lyric struck a spiritual chord because it reminded me of some seriously head and heart messing stuff I have been reading from Tim Keller. Keller wrote a thought provoking definition of idolatry and how we can substitute even good things for God. “Sin is building your life and meaning on anything, even a very good thing, more than on God. Whatever we build our life on will drive us and
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Stuck in a Groundhog Day Faith?

Seventeen years ago a funny and underappreciated  movie came on the scene. Groundhog Day told the story of a self-absorbed news reporter (redundancy alert?) that finds himself stuck in an endless repeat of the same day. Bill Murray is perfect in the role of reporter Phil Connors. Since I live in the odd world of broadcast television I can relate to the cynical personality of Murray’s character. Reporter Phil is less than thrilled that he has been assigned to cover Punxsutawney Phil’s annual peek outside to predict winter’s duration. Connor’s looks into the camera and cynically reports: “This is one time where television really fails to capture the true excitement of a large squirrel predicting the weather.” I have directed some events that offer that kind of challenge. But what got me thinking about that movie again was the plotline where Phil Connors realizes he is doomed to live the same day over and over and over. The plot is summed up
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I Will Follow You

(The latest iPod Devotional from theFish.com. Check it out every Monday) Sports fans might have heard TV analysts noting that a young athlete is struggling on the football field because the game is too fast and furious for them to react correctly. They say that when the game “slows down” that player will be much more effective. That means the athlete will learn what matters, what to react to, how not to get faked out, and how to respond properly in each situation. I think that is what is happening for me after all of these years. My once frenetic efforts to be a “good Christian” are slowing down. I think I am learning more about what matters, what to react to, how not to get faked out by Satan, and how to respond in grace. A great way to get some less than grace filled responses is to quote an R-rated movie. So here goes. “Nook” LaLoosh (from Bull
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