Shine

Matthew 5.16Life isn’t perfect. Our best efforts are never enough. We suffer from guilt, fear, and failure. We see our family and friends struggle. We witness hurt and pain. We don’t understand.

In this darkness, Jesus is the light.

Jesus offers salvation from this world and hope for a world to come. He covers our weaknesses and takes our guilt away. He fills us with joy and love. He calls us to share that with those around us who find themselves in darkness. He calls us to shine!

Not sure what to do? Try these three simple steps:

1. Know that you are a precious child of God!

2. Smile.

3. Express gratitude for your life.

And to get pumped for the day, take a listen to the Newboys classic hit, “Shine,” live from Texas…

Shine
Make ‘em wonder what you’ve got
Make ‘em wish that they were not
On the outside looking bored
Shine
Let it shine before all men
Let ‘em see good works, and then
Let ‘em glorify the Lord

That is all. Happy Friday!

Let It Go: Media Monday

It was bound to happen…another post in the blogosphere about the iconic song from Frozen, “Let It Go.” I have succumb to the pressure and hype. I can’t claim that it’s original, but I hope it’s at least helpful.

Every time a song, film, or novel becomes popular there is a line of critics ready to tear it down. “Let It Go” and Frozen were no different. It was anti-feminist; it was too feminist; she was too pretty; she was too strong; she was too weak; she set a false standard for our children. The list goes on. I entertain them all.

Pardon my self-indulgent aside: I entertained the critics with Harry Potter, the Left Behind series, The Passion of the ChristNoahGod’s Not Dead, and countless others. And I rejoice! Yes, I rejoice. No one song, film, or novel can be the definitive work. Every song, film, and novel can however begin a conversation. And we need more of those. We need parents who encourage their children to ask questions and to share. We need children who feel comfortable questioning and sharing. We need adults to have honest and open conversations. We need teachers and communities engaged. Anything that gets us talking is better than silence.

With respect to all the opinions, here’s my take: “Let It Go” has undoubtedly become the theme song for the film. With that status, it has also become the focus of much of the criticism. Nearly every child in America can sing it, so we should be aware of the themes. Can we take issue with some of them? Yes. But, ‘should we take issue with them?’ is a much better question. I say, ‘No.’ Elsa is in the middle of her journey. She is learning. She is growing. She is emotional. “Let It Go” is merely a stepping stone in the process of her becoming the loving, generous queen in the final scenes.

So as you ponder my Media Monday offering, embrace the snowy ice queen’s mantra, “Let IT Go.”

We all have people

who will belittle us, make us feel worthless and cheap, and destroy our sense of self.

Let IT Go!

We all have temptations

that pull us from the Truth, challenge our principles, and prevent us from being who we were called to be.

Let IT Go!

We all have garbage

that weighs us down, riddles us with guilt, regret, and fear, and holds us back.

Let IT Go!

God is ready to take all our critics, temptations, and garbage and guide us to become the loving, generous, best versions of ourselves too.

Are you ready to “Let It Go”

and become who you were called to be?

One Night with the King: Media Monday

The final portion of the 2006 film, based on the book of Esther. I’m using it in class today as we finish our month-long study of Esther, Mordecai, Xerxes, and Haman.

Enjoy!

And if you get a chance read the book. It’s a great story of faith!

Mordecai told Esther that she was called for “such a time as this.”

Where are you being called?