Tag Archives: Easter

Evangelicals and Lack of Tradition

This year, the Christian calendar begins November 28th. It is the Season of Advent.

Advent House

Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican, Lutheran and many mainline churches observe the Christian calendar. The topic for each Sunday is predictable. Scripture from the lectionary guides the themes, liturgy, sermon, art, and music of that particular time. Traditional? Yes. Useful? I do believe it is.

It provides congruence. Most Evangelical pastors are accustomed to, more or less, speaking about what’s been on their mind recently. This is carefully referred to as “what God has laid on their heart.” (And you’d be a fool to question the movement of the Spirit, right? Maybe a fool, or maybe a blasphemer…if you spoke your thoughts.)

In general, it’s not a terrible thing to follow the leading of the Spirit. (If that is truly what is happening. But, that’s another post entirely!) But does this unformatted contemporary formula help cinch together the Story of God, the Christian Story, and bring a cohesive message of the Gospel, in history and depth, in a palpably connected way? Or, is the shoot from the Holy hip often more of a “bang here and a bit there,” approach?


I’d like to hear your take on it?

I tend to think a healthy mix of several Christian traditions could be very spiritually useful in contemporary times. We are already malnourished on a sound bite way of life as is it.

Chaplain Mike, a one-time Southern Baptist preacher, who blogs at imonk does the whole topic much more justice than I can. I strongly encourage you to link to his specific post with the link at the bottom, if you’d like.

Witness this poignant quote found there:
(It really hit home with regards to my Christian church experiences.)

“Part of the problem is that evangelicals really don’t have traditions,” said Carter. “Instead, we have these fads that are built on the strengths and talents of individual leaders. … But a real tradition can be handed on to anyone, from generation to generation. It’s hard to hand these evangelical fads down like that, so it seems like we’re always starting over. It’s hard to build something that really lasts.”– Joe Carter as quoted by Terry Mattingly

My main resource for this post and a really helpful article is here at imonk. It is most helpful for Evangelicals, and I challenge you to consider a deeper appreciation for the Christian calendar year, starting this Sunday, November 28th.

Thank you for reading.

Nothing says Crucifixion like pastry!

Being Crucified with Christ has never been so Sweet!

Yes, this is “Something Christians Like” in Jon Acuff style… you can’t make stuff like this up.
Besides the Lamb cake, (Lamb of God or maybe spring lamb… the jury is still out. See previous post.) my sis also brought over a Crucifix Pastry. She said a local Catholic-owned bakery in Mt. Lebanon (PA) makes super, delicious products, including religious themed items.

(To be honest, I found it a bit dry. This was remedied by dunking it in good coffee, and soothing myself with chocolate.)

I can’t help but wonder, if Jesus Christ had died by stoning, would it have looked like a pile of stones? Or, if the electric chair had been around…. oh never mind.

What do you think about religious baked goods?
1. No way-Not for me!
2. Not sure.
3. Delicious!
4. Other ___________ (explain)

Celebrate-Christianity’s Biggest Day!

They say if you can’t preach on Easter, you just can’t preach!

This being Good Friday- it’s a downer day, of course. IT’s supposed to be. It’s supposed to be reflective. Sober. Pensive. Mindful.

Everything changes on Sunday. Easter Sunday was the one time my tiny chapel congregation sang with some pep. “Up from the grave he arose!” The tempo would get close to 4/4 time. The dirge-like hymns turned positive, and had some spark. (We were about as  non-charismatic as a church could be, but on Easter Sunday, I’m pretty sure I could heard a clap or two of exuberance.)

This Sunday-Let’s PARTY! Let’s remember this is our joy, God’s glory! Death is defeated, forgiveness and pardon is complete.

It might even be time for a fantastical drawing. You like?

Easter is a BIG Day! Celebrate!

Ahhh Warm and Fuzzy Easter Church Signs-NOT

(Yes, if you smell something weird, it’s because there is a nearly sardonic mood here today. I snapped this photo myself last night.)

Image this Potential Backstory:

Been away from church for awhile? Thinking this Easter Sunday might be a good time to go and get back into the fold?

Are you ready for a spiritual reawakening? A kind of rebirth? A cleansing in your spirit?

NOT SO FAST. WE’LL HAVE OUR EYE ON YOU. So-WATCH your back, Slacker!

Maybe you’re thinking… “Lots of family members will arrive for a big dinner at 1:00 pm. Will there be time to do it all?”

Before you make your final decision, we at Christ Church have something to tell you:

Yes, suicide is an option, Traitors!

We know what you’re up to, and that won’t fly here.

You’re welcome, America!

(What are your comments on this Epic fail?)

Other posts on various fails can be found on this site. Click #fail in the categories section below.

I guess you could say, the irony of  human weakness against the stuff of hubris is just something that amuses me.

Rebirth and colored eggs?

 

colored eggs

colored eggs

Today, I helped another mom guide 40 kindergartners in coloring 4 eggs a piece. One child was allowed to do the activity if the project revolved around the curriculum of dinosaurs, and was a dinosaur egg project, (that is, it wasn’t not related to Easter, or pagan rebirth symbol in some way.)

Spring is a time of rebirth. Easter is the only holiday Christians celebrate that retains its pagan name, and keeps certain pagan traditions (rabbits, eggs, feasting, gifts, candy, much of which references futility.) “Easter” (Ishtar) is a pagan Spring fertility Goddess. “Death and Resurrection Weekend” is probably too wordy for Christians to deal with, so it’s stayed “Easter”.

However, here it is important to see where some spiritual truths reverberate in and through multiple cultures in time and space. Like it or not, they reflect Truth, (a Being) and too, they carry with them the power of spirituality in symbols that reveal that which is universally true.

Sometimes the simplest reminder that spring brings new life can awaken us to the spiritual. God wants to redeem. The pictures are everywhere, once we start looking. God whispers through the workings of his world, and into the desires of our hearts to be re-created and refreshed. Is it any wonder that new life would be celebrated in Spring? I, for one, am happy to decorate some eggs, and chew on some chocolate rabbits.

When it comes to this time of year, what is the most spiritual thing for you?