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Everything Changes

The more messed up this world gets, the more God makes sense.

I just don't get it. Yes, we've been on this horse before. But it's not dead yet. At least, not for me.

Been listening to Kanye West's Late Registration CD. I borrowed it from the public library last week. I was desperate to find new music that was inspiring, cutting edge and well-produced. Hard to find that kind of music in the Christian section.

I'm listening to the Edited Version. The one without the f*ck word. It is also available with a Parental Advisory Label. Just in case you're into that.

The world has created a program to help people make good choices regarding their vocabulary. One of the issues considered in making a determination regarding application of the label is whether, in light of contemporary cultural morals and standards and the choices and views of individual parents, the recording might be one that parents may not want their child to listen to.

The Parental Advisory Program is voluntary. Record companies choose to include the label on their product. They are not legally required to do so.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, we are choosing to integrate the f*ck word into Christendom. Embracing contemporary cultural morals. In a culture that no longer embraces absolute truth. How nice.

The world has decided that the f*ck word can be inappropriate and detrimental. We have determined that the f*ck word is relevant.
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8:47 AM

Interesting how the world is becoming more of a "separatist" culture (be IN the world, but not OF the world) than Christians who seem to be the "conformists". The world in part sees cursing as wrong and disrespectful whereas some Christians are actually accepting of and in some cases adopting cursing into THEIR OWN vocabulary.    

9:45 AM

I'm not sure if that's totally true. I just listened to an ad for Mohawk Racetrack on my white-bread, smooth jazz radio station that used the term "What the hell was that?". June Cleaver would have given us a spanking, but it's acceptable in happy little commericial diddies.

Many would not even notice it, but I just rarely find myself (spending much of my time with Christians)in places where I hear cursing anymore so it does still take me aback. I rarely enjoy (or even watch)movies anymore because I can't justify listenning to exsessive (or even mild) cursing just for kicks. It breeds something distastful to my spirit

Do I ever curse? Yes. But I wish it didn't slip out in frustration. Do I find it that it makes be cool/relevant? Not whatsoever. But I also think that far too many Christians pretend that they do not slip up with their life/speach. And the result ends up being shame in some because they feel like they are the only ones to fail to meet a percieved standard.

I think that picking your spots, but alowing your own shortcomings to be exposed to others can be freeing and liberating to all involved. It just needs to be done in the context of "I need to change it"    

12:57 PM

BTW... did you know that the Book of Morman is being advertised on your site??


1:54 PM

Our world is changing and becoming more hostile all around. The language is reflective of that. Our young adults have replaced the word "darn" with the f-shot. We have a whole generation of youth who have never been taught about the Bible. My 20 year old daughter has never had the Lord's prayer to start her school day off.
I think this is happening because God's people have been comfy and complacent for too long and we are seeing the results of staying IN our churches and not being missionaries in our own country. I have begun praying earnestly for the leaders of our churches. That they will call their people to prayer for our government and our country before we are not able to worship in freedom.
There's more than meets the eye to this deterioration of morals in our society. God is missing.
A quote from Brother Yun ... a man tortured and beaten countless times for spreading the Gospel through China. These are his thoughts on the Western church after his visits to us.
"I can assure the Western church, with absolute certainty, that you do not need anymore church buildings. Church buildings will never bring you the revival you seek. The pursuit of more possessions will never bring revival. Jesus truly stated, 'A man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.' Luke 12:25.
The first thing needed for revival to return to your churches is the Word of the Lord. God's Word is missing. Sure there are many preachers and thousands of tapes and videos of Bible teaching, but so little contains the sharp truth of God's Word. It's the truth that will set you free.
Not only is knowledge of God's Word missing but obedience to that Word. There's not much action taking place....
You can never really know the Scriptures until you are willing to be changed by them."
The Heavenly Man. p. 296    

11:06 PM

I'm with Wendy in that, it starts with the hearing & obeying the truths in the Word...& maybe examining ourselves of any conduct we as followers, have hardened our consciences to & asking God to soften our hearts again. To make us hungry for more of Him & to "open our eyes to the detiorization" around us & make a decision to just follow Him instead.

Brother Yun is a perfect example of a man hungry for God, & truly giving his life over to Him...every time I'm reminded of his life I'm challenged to get more serious, more "action-oriented" for God.

The world is watching our every move, looking for "answers to true freedom"...when they dont see the freedom in us by the way we talk, act etc. we, (to be real) just throw water on any spark that may be there.
God said we need to choose to be hot or cold, but the "lukewarm" he'll spit out of his mouth. Personally I want to be contagioiusly passionate for Him w/ no fear...or churchy pride.    

12:17 AM

Thanks for your comments everyone - I am sure there is a lot more to be said regarding this post, but I want to clarify some of my intentions for writing it.

I was a little frustrated when I wrote this post. Not because I'm mad at Christians that swear (or anyone else for that matter) - it is much bigger than that. And it is personal. Let me explain.

God is stretching me big time these days. He is challenging every core belief, every perception and every doctrine I've ever known or embraced. And He is shaking off stuff in my life that CAN BE (and needs to be) shaken.

This post was not an attack, it was just me searching for truth - something absolute - in a culture that has radically changed. A culture that says truth is whatever you believe it to be.

I, personally, do not believe that you can be a disciple of Jesus Christ if you reject absolute truth.

On the other hand, there are aspects of our changing culture that we SHOULD embrace. Things like the importance of authentic relationships.

I know that today's culture embraces profanity more commonly than ever. There are even some words that are no longer considered to be profane. Like damn. Or hell.

"That's not a swear word!"

Do I swear? Yes. But not very often, and not to be relevant or accepted by the so-called standards of contemporary culture.

So why does it bug me so much when I observe our changing culture affecting the culture of the church? And being accepted there too?

I desire truth. In my inmost being.

Thousand Foot Krutch says it best on their latest CD:

We want the truth, give us the absolute

We need your help, 'cause we've got nothing!

1:33 PM

Thomas said, "Master, we have no idea where you're going. How do you expect us to know the road?"
Jesus said, "I am the Road, also the Truth, also the Life. No one gets to the Father apart from me. If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well...."
John 14:5-7 Msg

It's back to what Brother Yun says, " Not only is knowledge of God's Word missing but obedience to that Word. There's not much action taking place...."

When I first met Jesus and started to attend church I read the Bible feverishly with a fine tooth comb. Beginning to end, cover to cover ... this is where I got to know my Father and all His ways and the love and grace that Jesus' sacrifice gave to us... I knew I was on to something wonderful and in no way was it getting away from me. It has seen me through storm after storm. Sitting to hear the Word on Sunday mornings just increased that knowledge and faith in Him.
What always surprised me, though was this... so many people I fellowshipped with and even some of the people in leadership did not thoroughly know the Word of God. Had never read it cover to cover. There is danger in this because I think this is the door where the the following of men's rules sets in and behaving and talking a certain way replaces true right standing with God. Legalism, some call it. Stifling legalism.
All through all four gospels Jesus says "I tell you the truth..."
over and over and over again ... This is where anyone will find the absolute truth...
Here is another I tell you the truth .... Mark 3:28 to the teachers of the law, who said that Jesus was casting out devils by Beelzebub, "I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them. But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin." He said this because they were saying, "He has an evil spirit."
The world is changing and we need to keep loving and seeing through these things if we are to reach those in the harvest.. it is the goodness of God that calls men and women to repentance.
Again to the leaders of our churches... a repentance in your own hearts and a call of your people to repentance and prayer ...
the Lord told Solomon at the dedication of the Temple 2Chronicles 7:13 "When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." We need to stop quoting this and making beautiful songs about it and DO it.
He loves us and will turn our land around as we repent for leaving Him out of so much that we do and say...    

5:02 PM

Thanks Paul for being so real & open...this reveals your boldness & humility, which is the character in which I believe everyone [as a whole] needs to be approached-& received;
your posts open a way for us all to seek truth & fervently pursue the answer.    

8:58 PM

Paul, thank you soooo much for sharing this part of your life. I strongly struggle with foul language and I despise that part of myself. I used to say that i only swore when i was really mad, then it got to be when i was slightly mad. It is a poor excuse and if Jesus was standing in front of me i wouldn't say it. I am also working on a book called "the anger management workbook" of something to that effect anyway. so maybe when Jesus gets the anger out, he'll take the swearing with it. I know it's only in His strength that i can change.    

4:20 AM

Good post! Its true that profanity is coming in many forms these days especially in hip hop music :|. But I would also have to say that so has sex, drugs and violance. What about these bad things? Personally I would rather see someone swear then sing about sex, drugs and violance. But i get your point :). Good post none the less.. Don't get mad at me for voicing my oppion :|    

6:09 AM

Right on Josh ... there is a LOT more going on out there than language changes.

As in the days of Noah ...    

10:39 AM

Thing is that that sin is sin (there is no ranking scale) (outside from the fact that sexual sin is against your own body, but that is not a "in God's view" thing, it's just an "extra" nugget that we get to work through) ... and there is power in released from with our words, GOOD OR BAD.

I maybe should clearify what I meant earlier. When I said "you should pick your spots"... I did not mean that we should swear just to make others feel comfortable with their sin... what I meant was that there are moments where exposing our our flaws to others, releases us from feelings of condemnation and actually can allow others to do the same.

Saying, that we'd rather swear than sing about sex, is like saying I'd rather see someone smoking pot than shooting herion. While technically, it keeps us safer from physical harm, sin is not about our physical actions... it's about the state of our heart... and that's why there is no sin ranking system    

1:56 AM

i'm not even going to touch the f shot.

you're welcome.

as far as absolute truths and jesus... are there many OUTSIDE of the cross? and god? isn't this whole world that we live in temporary? meaning NOT absolute? and can't god change things at any moment if he so chooses to fit the time?

example: we call the bible "god's word." jesus was the "word made flesh." wouldn't that mean that when he was here, he was the bible in human form? so wasn't it he who said once, "an eye for an eye"? and then another time he said, "you have heard it said 'an eye for an eye.' BUT I SAY TO YOU if someone strikes you on the one cheek, turn to him the other also"? showing that nothing here is absolute except himself? just a couple of questions to ponder. i'm wondering myself.

didn't adam and eve actually get to live in a period of time where everything was acceptable? they could have done ANYTHING, right? how have things changed since then? the only real difference as far as i can tell is the cross. which should make us feel safer with god.

and of course for some strange reason, we just WILL NOT STOP gorging ourselves on the knowledge of good and evil!


2:09 PM

Grace.... it always amazes me that there are those who freely accept God's grace for themselves but do not extend that grace to others around them ...

Again and again deeply loving each other is the answer ... being tenderhearted to each other and forgiving each other as Christ forgave us ... this IS the way that the world will know that we are His disciples ... no other way ... and those in the world looking for absolute love and truth are not finding it today among those who "claim" to know Christ...
I was speaking to a homosexual coworker of mine just yesterday ...
He said when he is "feeling" people out to know whether they are going to accept and love him as he is ...as soon as they mention church... he does not form a friendship with them, basically to protect himself. This goes for many others in our society today and may very well be why church attendance is down ...
I set this scripture to music to teach my kids because I loved it so much...

He has shown thee, oh man, what is good and what does the Lord require of thee, but to do justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with thy God ... Micah 6:8

Our heavenly Father LOVES mercy.    

7:36 PM

...reminds me of that scripture/song: "& they'll know we are Christians by our love by our love, yeah they'll know we are Christians by our love."

problem being is;

-For those that don't associate "Christians" with love from bad experience, is there any hope for that to change?--We can't "undo" the damage done from the LACK of love & condemnation displayed by SOME of the body of Christ...but we CAN make a fresh start with the help of the Holy Spirit.

"Not by might, nor by power but by My Spirit" says the Lord Almighty. (Zech. 4:6)    

9:42 PM

Amen to that Running Free.

I really love your blog name ... It's my motto these days ... to run free to do as the Lord guides and leads knowing full well that He has always and will ever be unconventionally loaded with Love for All.    

10:26 PM

:-) above from me...lol

Going to watch the rest of the game now It's 2-0 for Carolina BOOOO    

1:18 AM

Thanks for your "anonymous" compliment on my blog name, Wendy=)...or was that you? Ghanas gone so go BRAZIL!!!!!!!!!!!!    

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