Take a few minutes to zoom in on this infographic and mull over the meaning. (More at http://religions.pewforum.org/ .) This infographic provided by Pew Research helps strip away denials we form as we go to bigger church gatherings and have fewer people in God’s family.
The continuing demise of the effectiveness of faith in the United States should bring a multiple of responses. Why do we struggle to acknowledge our declining influence in community standards? What is it about faith that enables a complete denial of reality? Maybe the issue is not faith. Maybe the issue is religion. Maybe we have locked into our customs and traditions and so want to connect people with our style that we miss their soul? Maybe we have so looked to matching their style that we miss our soul? Either way, we are missing it.
. Attendance has gone from 60% to 25% in our churches in the last 50 years.
. Fatherless homes have gone from 11% to 34% in the same time frame.
. Abortion exists as an acceptable option. Life dominated. Now disposal dominates.
. Same sex marriage exists as an acceptable option. Generational family dominated. Now, one life flings are gaining ground.
. Our border is a war zone over access to our drug infatuation.
Pray with knowledge. Act with purpose.
. Get involved in someone else’s life. Quit being so self-centered.
. Be a concerned listener to your neighbors at work, home, and marketplace. Take an interest in their world instead of preaching at their world. Seek to understand.
. Go do something you would not normally do. Go spend time in an environment that is unfamiliar to you. Be a missionary to someone in your same city.
. Try to write down the message of acceptance in Christ and forgiveness of the blame of mistakes without using Christianized terms like saved, salvation, blood of Jesus, made pure, Holy Ghost fire, sin, or heaven. There is nothing wrong with those words except they don’t communicate to an unbeliever. Surely the Creator can reconnect us to His love and accept us into His family even though we wander off into our own selfish pursuits and need to have our record expunged. Yes, we need to be honest and transparent with our selfishness and bad living habits. Yes, we need to go to Him and acknowledge He is right and we are wrong and we need His help. Yes, we need to realize He sent His Son, Jesus, to take our deserved punishment and sentencing of guilt. Yes, we need to accept Jesus as not just a man, but also The God. And we can do it in terms that are meaningful to us just like the Greeks of the early days of the church and the Hebrews of the pre-church days.
. Be relevant with a powerful message. Don’t water down the gospel. Live it. Learn it. Give it away.
“Chicago doesn’t have a gun problem; it has a father problem.
Gun control isn’t the problem on Chicago’s streets; self-control is.
When young men don’t have fathers, they don’t learn to control their masculine impulses. They don’t have fathers to teach them how to channel their masculine impulses in productive ways.”
When young men don’t have fathers, those men will seek out masculine love — masculine acceptance — where they can find it. Often, they find it in gangs.
Fathers’ obesity can affect genetics of newborns | Science/Technology | NewsObserver.com http://ow.ly/jniAx hmmmmm
Like Seani B, Lammy’s motivation is personal. Lammy’s late father also drank – he walked out on his family and left
the country when Lammy was 12, leaving his mother to raise five children alone. Understandably, it had a serious long-term effect. “He became unimaginably important the day he left,” says Lammy. “I struggled to cope with anger, self-doubt and what felt like personal betrayal. I had to lean on youth workers and priests and teachers to help me fill the great, father-shaped hole in my life.”
Young, black and proud to be a father | Life and style | The Guardian http://ow.ly/jme5f
Stay alert….. FEARLESS Family FEARLESS Father FEARLESS Faith weekend coming to you in OKC April12,13,14 …. The Shepherd Center
” We live in a society that trades on the cult of masculinity, one in which male power and strength are championed, from the football fields outward. One only needs to look at the community that Richmond and Mays were brought up in to understand that. These two boys were groomed to expect praise at every turn, in a pro-victor, pro-sports community that was willing to overlook any indiscretion, allowing them to think of themselves as indestructible, or at the very least, untouchable.” After Steubenville, How Can We Raise Children Who Will Speak up to Prevent Rape, Not Defend It? – NYTimes.com http://ow.ly/jkBdW
Do you believe that? In our social structure that devalues life on the whole and sees it as only meaningful when contributing economically, we seem to have lost footing in our struggles to define real masculinity versus imposed power brokering versus Casper Milqutoast. Simultaneously, we find a large number of men frustrated and feeling emasculated and marginalized. Our school environments struggle with bullying conflicts that parents deny. Children are left to raise themselves and define their own values and principles with relativistic rationalism. And, then we wonder why or make up an answer.
Weigh in…. What do you think?
Learn more on Monday at The Man In A Box….
My son, a freshman, who led our small high school’s varsity soccer team out of last place last year into fourth place this year, said this. I had no immediate response. The sheer profundity had to sink in slowly. …. read the rest of how one father encourages his son…
‘It’s hard to care when all you do is lose’ | Mustard Seed Budget http://ow.ly/j3L2A