What’s a Hypocrite?

What’s a Hypocrite?

I don’t think we’ve had this particular discussion before with the boys. It was verses from the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 6) and questions in Good Dirt (http://gooddirtfamilies NULL.com/good-dirt-devotional/) that got their wheels turning and, before we’d even finished the Scripture reading our 8-year-old was interrupting with, “What’s a hypocrite? … What’s a hypocrite?” They couldn’t really identify with Jesus’ examples of blowing trumpets when giving money in church, or praying really loud on street corners, or fasting from food with troubled faces. So, the challenge was to bring hypocrisy to a kid’s level. “It’s doing things so that other people will think you’re a really...

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Going for Gold

Going for Gold

Olympic season and the Quinns are taking in some winter sports in Russia these days! We’re rooting not only for the USA but also for Norway, Switzerland, and the Ukraine. Our high-schooler is part of a competition in his Global Community class and his threesome bid for these countries in their class Olympics. They chose well; we’ve celebrated more than a few golds. It’s fun to watch these exotic winter games and witness the amazing victories, along with the crushing upsets, injuries, and nerve-wracked sub-par performances. As we do, though, the mom in me can’t help but ask questions that span far beyond Russia. It’s these questions that run deep and wide, but that really circle back to the heart of each one of us and what it is that we’re really...

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God Is a Genius

God Is a Genius

It’s funny how perspective can change. Amazing, really, the way the bad in life can take on increasing degrees of hope … Friends of ours needed to return recently from their home overseas due to a serious  health difficulty one member of the family was experiencing. It was a blow they all felt deeply–the critical health issue and then the loss of their long-time second home and relationships of many years. Their work and ministry remained only partly finished. After a few months of being back home in the United States, the family sent an update. All that was happening had been dark and utterly perplexing. Life hung in the balance for one and it had seemed that vital ministry would encounter no end of difficulties due to the family’s...

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Understanding Sin and Where It Brings Us

Understanding Sin and Where It Brings Us

Sin. We can’t talk about what it means to be a follower of Jesus without discussing sin. It’s a word we find a lot in the Bible and a word that has been used in all sorts of ways throughout the eras of the Christian church. Sometimes sin hasn’t been explained well, and sometimes God’s answer to sin hasn’t been celebrated as the vital second half of the story of God’s life with us. I’m reading the New Testament book of Romans with a group at church, and we have plunged right in with Paul, the writer of Romans, to talk of sin and its effects on people in the very first chapter of this book. Paul is writing to a church in the big, first-century city of Rome that has never had a visit from an apostle, has never had...

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Jesus the People Person

Jesus the People Person

One thing that I think about often with Jesus is that he chose to spend a lot of time with people, in all kinds of ways. Here are two descriptions from the Bible of how he spent his time: Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people. News about him spread all over Syria, and people brought to him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralyzed; and he healed them. Large crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea and the region across the Jordan followed him. ~ Matthew 4:23-25   After this, Jesus went out and saw a tax collector by the name of...

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Secret Destinations

Secret Destinations

All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveller is unaware.” ~ Martin Buber, a Jewish philospher Thank you, readers, for sharing in my recent journey to Israel and Bible lands around the Mediterranean. I took  you all with me, truly, in my spirit and in my yearning for you all to catch at least a bit of what I was seeing, sensing, and experiencing during those two weeks. I hope you got to follow along in the pictures and blurbs I posted on Facebook. Today, I want to share with you some reflection as I think back on the trip and continue to process what God had for me, and for all of us, on that amazing journey. The quote above appeared on a screen during our first day on a boat in Greece, halfway through the trip, and these words express well...

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