Sep 28, 2007
The underlying problem with the Episcopal Church is simply that there are so few real Christians in the denomination (sad, but true). Between the Liberals (who are really Unitarians in Drag) and the Conservatives (Republicans with Liturgy), there is almost no commitment to the life-changing aspects of the Gospel.
One of the reasons that the African and 2/3rds World Primates have been unwilling to leap to the Conservatives side more than they have, is a concern that the Conservative Episcopalians are more like the Pharisees of Jesus' time than like the Disciples of Paul's time (this was told to me by an African bishop). Too much love of mammon (including bricks and stained glass), and too little love for the lost and suffering.
Sep 20, 2007
Instead of always being one of the chief bastions of the social status quo, the Church is to develop a Christian counter-culture with its own distinctive goals, values, standards, and lifestyle--a realistic alternative to the contemporary technocracy which is marked by bondage, materialism, self-centeredness, and greed.
Christ's call to obedience is a call to be different, not conformist. Such a Church--joyful, obedient, loving, and free--will do more than please God: it will attract the world. It is when the Church evidently is the Church, and is living a supernatural life of love by the power of the Holy Spirit, that the world will believe.
John R. W. Stott (b.1921),
"Obeying Christ in a Changing World"
Sep 17, 2007
Sep 6, 2007
I've referenced my James Avery crosslet ring before. Originally a gift from my late sister that I literally wore out, and then a new one as a re-gift from my wife and daughters.
For the first roughly twenty years I wore this ring, including both pre and post conversion, I wore it with the cross facing me. Oriented this way it served as a reminder, and as a comforter, to me. It was aimed at me for my benefit.
However, after I assumed my "evangelical" identity, the next two decades have found the ring rotated so that the cross now faces away from me towards other people. Instead of being a private devotion, it is now an outward proclamation.
The ring's position on my hands reflects my own metamorphosis from inward pietism to outward evangelicalism.
BTW: There is no "correct" orientation for the ring. I only speak of and from my own experience.