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The Real Enemy Feeding Racism in America

Tonto and the Lone Ranger were riding through a canyon together when all of a sudden both sides were filled with Indian warriors on horses, dressed for battle. The Lone Ranger turned to Tonto and asked, “What are we going to do?” Tonto replied, “What do you mean ‘we,’ white man?” (In Search of Unity, Edward Dobson, pp. 20–27)

A funny illustration, but there is some scary truth contained here. The attitude of “I am with you until trouble comes” is destructive for race relations. What is causing the division?

How to Be a Good (Adult) Child to Your Parents

As a child and teenager, I was always reminded of the Fourth Commandment: Honor your father and your mother.

Obviously, I should have been doing that anyway … but I was too busy talking back and rolling my eyes to remember.

Once I moved out and lived on my own—first at college, then as a working adult—I thought my days of obeying my parents were over. After all, I didn’t live under their roof anymore, so I got to make my own rules in my own home!

Conflicting Ideas between Church and Government

This year has introduced a lot of challenges and changes in government due to the current pandemic. It is also an election year, and people are focusing their attention on registering to vote and ensuring they get to the polls. The summer edition of Lutheran Life is all about balancing your faith with politics, understanding that you are a citizen of two kingdoms. Read an excerpt from the new edition below.

Think Before You Post to Social Media

Search “social media vitriol” and Google gives a return of about 2,240,000 results. You’ve probably muted at least one person or conversation on Facebook or Twitter, maybe even going so far as to “unfriend” someone if the content of their posts was just too much to handle in a given season of life—too much politics, too much Pinterest, too much profanity, too many false prophets. The anger and instant backlash that social media seems to create and thrive off of can be exhausting and soul crushing. And it’s a valid reason why many people simply choose to avoid social media altogether, or at least severely limit the amount of time they spend on social networks. 

July 2020 Everyday Faith Calendar

My smartphone tracks how I use it and, more specifically, the length of time that I spend each day on it. At the start of each new week I receive a notification with a weekly screen report that features the average amount of hours I was using my phone throughout the past week. Some smartphone devices call this a “digital well-being report” and I will admit that most weeks the number that pops up is almost always higher than it should be. The report is even more condemning when I open it up and can see a list of what apps I was using all of my time on. I won’t make you guess: social media apps are not strangers to the top of this list on my report.

How to Build Virtual Community

As some states are beginning to open back up, many states are still either under stay-at-home orders, require reduced capacity for public gatherings, or mandate social distancing practices.

In the midst of this, many people have been missing their church family. Community is an essential part of the Christian life, and gathering on Sunday mornings for church is a natural way to build relationships. Add to that weekly small group Bible studies, accountability meetings, and hangouts that are no longer happening, and we have a community crisis on our hands.

Racial Healing Begins with Recognizing Our Neighbor

I ran across a fantastic quote by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.:

“The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was: ‘If I stop to help this man, what will happen to me?’ But…the good Samaritan reversed the question: ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?”

The Nation's Cry for Peace and Justice

This article appeared on The Light Breaks Through and has been published here with permission.

As you try to process all that is going on in our country, here are some thoughts. Do not let your opinion about the riots exploding around the country taint your opinion of what happened to George Floyd. Notice I called them riots and not protests.

We’re All in the Fishbowl Now

It’s a common question among the wives of pastors: Should you be Facebook friends with congregation members? How much of your social media presence should you share with them, if any? Is it safe to include them in your social networks, or will those connections harm your in-person relationships—or worse, the relationship between congregation members and their pastor or even the church?

Maybe you’ve asked this question, too, whether you’re a pastor’s wife, a professional church worker, or a faithful layperson desiring to offer all you have to the glory of God.

June 2020 Everyday Faith Calendar