Morning Musing: Mark 8:4

“His disciples answered him, ‘Where can anyone get enough bread here in this desolate place to feed these people?'” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Have you ever been around someone who was slow on the uptake? One of my favorite such characters is Pinky from Pinky and the Brain. The characters were originally one of the side shows of the classic cartoon, Animaniacs (currently in the second season of its revival on Hulu), but became so popular they got their own show. I watched every episode. Twice. The show is about two lab mice, one a super genius thanks to experimentation, the other a complete moron, who together try to take over the world. One of the show’s running gags is that Brain gets an idea for taking over the world, asks Pinky if he’s thinking the same, and Pinky responds by saying, “I think so Brain, but….” and then follows that up with something completely off the wall. Here’s a nice compilation of these responses. In any event, the joke is that Pinky never quite manages to be in the moment with Brain. He’s always a few miles behind the eight ball. When Jesus was facing another huge and hungry crowd, He asked the disciples yet again to feed them. From their response, they might as well have been Pinky.

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Others First

As we come to the final part of our conversation about how to love like Jesus, this morning we’re taking a look at one more example of Jesus’ love so we can understand it better. We know that loving like Jesus is important. We know that it requires both grace and truth. But how exactly do we get the one another part right. This story answers that question. Thanks for tuning in this week. Next week we’ll kick off a brand-new series looking at just what exactly followers of Jesus believe called You Believe What?

Others First

I like getting what I want. Don’t you? That’s just a sign things are going like they should be going. You’ve perhaps had those days before when everything was falling into place just like you envisioned it would go. Those are good days. You know what I don’t like? Not getting what I want. Anyone with me? Have you ever not gotten what you wanted? That’s more of the rule for how life goes than the other way, isn’t it? What really creates a conundrum for us, though, is when you getting what you want and me getting what I want are mutually exclusive outcomes. In that kind of a situation, what are we most likely to pursue? Well, if we’re being honest, it’s probably going to be our own interests. Why? Because we want what we want more than we want what somebody else wants. If we wanted what somebody else wanted, it wouldn’t be what somebody else wanted, it would be what we wanted and there would be no problem. But when it’s not? Well, that’s where things can get tricky.

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Morning Musing: John 13:35

“By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Love is something that I’ve been coming back to again and again this month. I guess it’s the season. The more I think about this one idea, though, the more significant it becomes. If you are a follower of Jesus, people will recognize you as such because of your love. I’ve said it before, but that’s the only sure test for being a follower of Jesus we find in the Scriptures. In other words, if we don’t get that right, our identity will remain clouded in uncertainty. That or we will be guilty of false advertising. Well, Fridays have become my days for cultural review. Today I want to tell you about a show that puts this principle on display in a way that has become really endearing over its several seasons. This morning, let’s talk about Superstore.

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Two Are Better than One

This week we pick back up our teaching series, Love Like Jesus. From our conversation a couple of weeks ago we understand a bit better why loving like Jesus is such a big and important deal (especially for followers of Jesus), but we still need to see it in action. We need examples. What does it look like to love like Jesus. Let’s look together at a story that gives us one of the best pictures we can find in the Gospels.

Two Are Better than One

I want today’s message to be sticky, so we’re going to start out here by talking about glue. Literally, not metaphorically. Have you ever used a two-component epoxy glue before? Admittedly I didn’t know that much about them and had to do a bit of research this week. Epoxies are glues that are chemically activated and form bonds at a molecular level. This makes them much, much stronger than your average bottle of Elmer’s best. Some epoxies use just a single substance that does the trick. Some, though, use two different substances. That’s why they call them two-component epoxies. I know, this is complicated stuff today.

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Name Tag

This week we kicked off a brand-new teaching series called, Love Like Jesus. All this month we are talking about why love matters for followers of Jesus and just what it looks like when we get it right. You won’t want to miss a single part of this journey. In this first part we start off by clarifying why loving one another is such a big deal for Jesus followers. The truth is that it’s far more foundational even than we often understand it to be. Keep reading to understand why.

Name Tag

Think for a minute about the last time you did something you knew you should be doing, but it really just felt like a chore. What kinds of things have fit into this category for you? Perhaps doing the dishes? Maybe fixing a meal for your family? If you have an exercise routine, I suspect it’s felt like more of a chore than a benefit on more than one occasion (although that does not mean you’re better off not having one so you can avoid the guilt of doing it inconsistently). Do you know what else can sometimes fall on that list? I know this is something you’re probably not expecting the preacher to say, but I’m just being real with you this morning. Sometimes being a Christian can go on that list.

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