RSVP with God: Outcome-Driven Quiet Times

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RSVP stands for the four steps I have been using to help my spirit align with God’s purposes for my life:

  • Rejoice: Meditate on yesterday’s emotional highs and lows until you find a way to rejoice in them
  • Shalom: Repeat until you can rest in God’s peace. Over time your “set point” of how much peace you expect will increase.
  • Vision: From that place of Peace, ask God what to focus on today. As part of this, I like to read a short devotional, look up relevant Bible verses, and God for a single “theme” word for the day to prime my thinking.
  • Praise: Finish by affirming God’s sovereignty over everything that is going to happen, and thanking Him for showing up.

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Paleo-Evangelical Christianity

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I consider myself a “Paleo-Evangelical” Christian. Like my counterparts in the first century, I have had transformational encounters with the person of Jesus Christ and am devoted to making him known as the Risen Lord; but am still working through which of my inherited cultural understandings and religious teachings are worthy to bear His name.

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Reclaiming Eden, Part II: Adam’s Weakness

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Continued from Part I.

Man and Woman were walking by a range of hills. Suddenly, a gleam of light caught Woman’s eye.  She glanced up, and saw a beautiful blue sparkle high up on the side of a cliff.  “Oh my,” she said, “how lovely!  I wonder what that is?”

Without a moment’s hesitation, Man ran over and started climbing.  Woman held her breath as his fingers and toes sought out tiny ledges to hold onto, and gasped once when he almost fell.  But before she knew it, he had retrieved his prize and was kneeling before her, holding up a nearly transparent rock that glittered with all the colors of the sun.

That night by the fire, while she was admiring her gift, she leaned over and kissed him on the cheek. “You were so brave, today.  I bet you aren’t scared to do anything!”

Man stiffened.  Without a word, he got up and walked away into the darkness. 

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Reclaiming Eden, Part I: Eve’s Triumph

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The serpent was clever, more clever than any wild animal GOD had made.

He spoke to the Woman: “Do I understand that God told you not to eat from any tree in the garden?”

The Woman smiled and said to the serpent, “Not at all. Actually, God did not tell me anything.”

The serpent was puzzled. “Wait, you mean you think you can eat from any tree in the garden?”

“Yes, that’s right,” she said, humming to herself as she sniffed a flower.

“This is too easy,” murmured the serpent. “Well then, have your tried the fruit from this tree here in the center? It is the best in the garden. In fact, it will make you smarter than your husband, as smart as God! You really need to experience it for yourself.”

The Woman saw that the tree was beautiful, that its fruit was good to eat, and that it would make her wise.

She half-reached an arm towards it…
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AORTA Adolescence: The Perpetual Practice of Growing into Christ

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It may be too late to have a happy childhood, but it is never too late to have a turbulent adolescence!

We as a society have lost sight of what it means to grow up. And that’s a good thing!

The gift (and curse) of the Enlightenment is that each of us must answer the question: who do I want to be when I grow up?  It is tempting to envy our ancestors and traditional cultures who had well-defined “markers of maturity”, e.g., marriage, mortgage, and making money.  There is enormous security, stability, and support in having society validate who you are supposed to be.

But there is also enormous danger, especially for Christians.

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