Does anyone wear black to a funeral anymore? Seems increasingly common to have "celebrations of life" in lieu of funerals. As Christians, we mourn but not as those without hope, but that's just it, we do and should mourn our losses. So why is grief displaced with "happiness", as if we were throwing a party? And is this happiness genuine or are we genuinely in denial that something legitimately sad has happened? Beware Church, you may be sending mixed messages with these "celebrations". Just how difficult is a pastor's job made by all this confusion? To help us consider it, we have a Scotsman who weaseled his way into the recording studio after trading in his kilt for some urban slims.
"We live with an odd mix of immature people incapable of adult responsibility and yet full of extreme self-confidence,” said an English menace. But perhaps Carl is onto something - what of this Neverland with its abundance of "Lost Boys"? Not surprisingly, women complain of immaturity in the opposite sex, but they themselves aren’t spared this epidemic.
What makes us mature adults? Maybe saying "I do" or buying a mini-van? Not really. In today's culture, there’s a restless, sexualized childishness - an endless adolescence, and we want to know who (or what!) is to blame! Carl, Aimee, & Todd have their theories …
It's not Reformation Day anymore but we are still a-buzz about Luther and more specifically, the Biblica Germanica. Our Spin bookworms gawk over its beautiful calligraphy and the black and white illustrations, which Todd mistakenly took for coloring pages ... we knew better than to let him bring his crayons. It's another chance to discuss God's providential work through Martin Luther, a man so instrumental in bringing the Word of God to the common layperson of his day.
It's difficult finding the right thing to say to those in mourning - we clumsily fumble over our words, say nothing, or utter the worst possible thing at the worst possible time. Whatever our experience, we could all use help ministering better to those suffering loss - in particular, the loss of an unborn child. To help us today is Matthew Eusey, Pastor of Trinity Church Central Oahu, and his wife, Karyn.
The Euseys share about the loss of their son and what it was like at the receiving end of people's best efforts to help them through their grief. In a few words, they give voice to a darkness so often kept private. Their story is a humbling, sincere account of awaiting the resurrection while honoring the little life God fashioned and took so quickly. It's hard making sense of such a sadness, but Karyn said it best: “There is no silver lining in this … but Christ.”
Reformation Day has come and gone so naturally we talk about Martin Luther. He's no Halloween has-been, so we thought: "Better get a legit Church Historian and Luther extraordinaire on today's show!" Unfortunately Roland Bainton left the stage in '84 and Robert Kolb would rather be on The White Horse Inn, so no one really knowledgeable on the subject was available ... so we asked Carl Trueman. Carl takes a stab answering questions about the medieval agenda, what church laity gained from Luther's mission, and Luther's lasting impressions on preaching after the reformation. Grab your candy corn, it's gonna be an earful!
Simonetta Carr has authored numerous (and superb!) children’s books. It’s our honor to have her on the show today, and it won’t take you long to figure out she ain’t from around here. Originally hailing from lovely Italy, she now lives in sunny Cali - trading one vineyard for another. It does seem all the more fitting she’d write a book on Michelangelo, contender for the Renaissance Man title and a native Italian himself! Simonetta calls us to question: why should reformed protestants know (or even care) about Michelangelo and the Renaissance, and why should our children learn about them, too? Her book will broaden our view of the reformation as well as an appreciation for the arts and the beauty therein. But … what about all the renaissance nudity?! Don't shield your eyes … it’s a bit of Art Appreciation meets Survey of Art History on Mortification of Spin today, so trade your pen for a paintbrush and tap into your inner artist.
Happy 10th anniversary to the Young Restless & Reformed! To those unfamiliar with YRR, we aren't marking the anniversary of a soap opera, (though, it's had its fair share of drama!). The YRR, or New Calvinism, is a movement that gained momentum in the late 90's when many grew restless within the Emerging Church. They wanted something more solid on which to stand: doctrine! And so they turned to the theological treasure trove of the olden days. For some it's a revolutionary resurgence of discovery and Biblical understanding, while to others, it's simply review. However good this movement from Emergent to Edwards is, it comes with its criticisms and concerns. Ten years strong and the verdict's still out: Have the Young Restless & Reformed strengthened the Church?
Let’s talk ministerial burnout! It’s a relevant topic at the end of another marathon recording day as we squeeze our hosts for onnnnne more episode. Poor Todd, red-eyed and against his fragile will, did not leave the studio despite his many threats to do so. Just a Diva trapped inside a pipe-smoker’s body. In all seriousness, ministerial burnout can be lurking in the pulpit or present in the pew more often than we realize. The stats are alarming which demand we ask: Do we encourage those who shepherd us? Do we pray often (or even at all!) for them? Are our elders consumed by responsibilities or healthy and happy in their service?
As you may know, our hosts are avid readers. But what you don't know may surprise you ... Carl enjoys snuggling up to a good comic & Todd's keen on the Scratch and sniff, pop-up variety but Aimee's leaps and bounds ahead of the boys with the more mature palette, devouring her fair share of Seventeen magazine. Our shining examples of readers beg the question: why read? Outside of studying the Bible, should reading be considered a godly discipline? Should Christians read poetry? Novels? Or only biographies and ... Harry Potter?
Wesley Smith, lawyer and an award winning author, recognized as an expert thinker in the field of bioengineering and a "Great Defender of Life" for his work against assisted suicide and euthanasia, joins us today as we bask in the glories of the one-star Best Western conference room. Wesley is calling in from Cali - how fortunate he should be deprived the novelties of weak coffee and Todd's disgruntled face as he eats another day-old donut. Of course, the trials we face here pale in comparison with today's topic. Wesley bears much knowledge on bioethics, a field of study that tests the ethics and philosophical implications of medical practices and procedures. With the sanctity of life increasingly questioned, "do-harm medicine" is growing in practice. We live in a backwards world where death is more valued than life, and the disabled not worthy of all the medical efforts. Don't be surprised to find yourself catching your jaw during this one!