“I’m kind of a big deal…”

This article makes a very convincing argument for the connection between abortion and arrogance.  Following this line of logic helps us get down to the root of the matter, in fact all the matters that afflict our relationships.  Here is the final paragraph, a gem of clarity and insight:

How would our lives be different if we understood that we are never more important than our spouse? We are never more important than our children? We are never more important than our neighbor or brother? The culture of life — indeed, grace itself — begins with the denial of self, and unless we begin to deny self, we could overturn Roe and still not overcome abortion — much less the sins that separate us from God and man.

55 Million and Counting…

Since Roe v Wade 55 million abortions have been performed.  That represents something like one third of a generation.  Today only 41% of Americans consider themselves “pro-choice.”  There are other encouraging signs.  I highly recommend this article.

I also recommend this book: Redeeming Grief.  Amazon linkhttps://i0.wp.com/freedompublishing.com.au/images/Redeeming%20Grief.jpg

Here is a link to an interview with the author.

Amazing Testimony! George Conger’s Healing

https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/2912573379/35d7386d91231a5acbdcddb1f79b6f1a.jpegThe first 12 minutes of this edition of Anglican TV from March 11, 2013 will warm your heart and encourage you.  Guaranteed.  Here’s the link.  I met George and Kevin at GAFCON.  They are sort of the rockstars of Anglican journalism.  Always on the job.  Always insightful.  But this is personal.  George tells about his ….  Well, you just have to watch it for yourself.

Which Grace?

Satan works best through counterfeits and through changing the meaning of words.  I strongly recommend the following presentation given at GAFCON.  Here is the link to the video.  And here is the link to the manuscript.  It is well worth your time to sit down and watch/listen with the manuscript in your hand or on your screen.

Tell Me the Old, Old Story

If I say: “I am reading great book.”   How might your respond? You might say,  “So what?” Or you might say,  “Oh really.  What’s it about?”  Then I would try to describe it.

Sometimes that is easy, sometimes hard, sometimes impossible.  We say, “I can’t explain it.  You’ll just have to read it yourself.”

This is the challenge of describing a story.  Narratives can carry many layers and nuances all at once.  But we can only describe one thing at a time.

Description can never to justice to narrative.  For example,  “I’m reading a great book.”

“What’s it about?”

“About a boy and a runaway slave who float down the Mississippi River on a raft and have many adventures along the way.”

Is that what Huckleberry Finn is about?  Yes, in a way.  But mostly no.  Because it is so much more than that.

When people ask, “what is it about,” what they are really wondering is:  “Should I be interested, is this worth my attention?”  “Does this story connect with my story?”

Our lives are stories.  Some once said, “Every good story has a beginning, a muddle and an end.”  Most of us feel like we are somewhere in the muddle. We are caught up in a complex interplay of circumstances, geography, other characters whose stories interlock with ours. And we are characters in their stories, as well.

What if you came up to me and said, not “I’m reading a story,” but “I’m living a story.” And I ask you, “Oh really, what’s it about?”  What would you say?  What is your story about?

You might say, “That’s not a fair question.  You can’t reduce my life to a few descriptive phrases and categories.”

This is the great challenge of preaching.  Sadly most preaching is a process of turning narrative (stories) into propositions (ideas). And its like turning wine into water.

All the time our listeners are asking:  “But how does this relate to my life story?” Successful stories are the ones that connect with our stories.  Strong stories not only connect, they have the power to shape our lives. Stories are what hold cultures together.

The crisis we face in America, and indeed all of what remains of Western civilization, is not primarily political or economic.  It is that we no longer have a common story that unites us and points us toward a common good.

Just the opposite: Our stories now divide us by stirring up envy and hatred and suspicion.  They point us toward evil and death.

As Christians our lives are part of the greatest, truest adventure of all, the redemption of a lost world through our Lord Jesus Christ. But for most of us that grand narrative is fragmentary at best, and not really connected.

Now more than ever we need to immerse ourselves not just in theological truth of Scripture, but in the story.

As I was collecting these thoughts a fragment of an old hymn from my childhood came to mind, and with the help of google I found it.

Tell me the old, old story of unseen things above,
Of Jesus and His glory, of Jesus and His love.
Tell me the story simply, as to a little child,
For I am weak and weary, and helpless and defiled.



Tell me the old, old story, tell me the old, old story,
Tell me the old, old story, of Jesus and His love.

Tell me the story slowly, that I may take it in.

That wonderful redemption, God’s remedy for sin.
Tell me the story often, for I forget so soon;
The early dew of morning has passed away at noon.




Tell me the story softly, with earnest tones and grave;
Remember I’m the sinner whom Jesus came to save.
Tell me the story always, if you would really be,
In any time of trouble, a comforter to me.




Tell me the same old story when you have cause to fear
That this world’s empty glory is costing me too dear.
Yes, and when that world’s glory is dawning on my soul,
Tell me the old, old story: “Christ Jesus makes thee whole.”

Screwtape Rejoices over Canterbury’s Change in Baptismal Rite and Other Victories

CS Lewis fans will appreciate David Virtue’s recent attempt to look at AB Welby’s latest revision from the perspective of the “other team.”  While it is witty, this is actually quite serious business.  Scripture teaches that clearly that words matter.  Romans 10:9-10 is a bulwark of our faith.  “If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” 

The church has always believed that verbal confession and verbal renunciation have actual spiritual power.  When we quit renouncing the devil and all his forces this is a real omission. But behind this lies the important question: Why is this revision being made?  What lies behind it?  What would make a global spiritual leader think renunciation of Satan is no longer significant?

Screwtape Proposes an Anglican Toast
With apologies to C.S. Lewis

By David W. Virtue
January 11, 2014

My dear Wormwood,

What an absolute stroke of genius. Our father the Devil is now dead, killed off by the Anglican Mother Church. A sterling performance, if ever there was one.

With a stroke of the pen, they have done away with those words that stung our father so deeply.

“Do you reject the devil and all rebellion against God?” which prompted the reply, “I reject them.” They were then asked: “Do you repent of the sins that separate us from God and neighbor?” with the answer: “I repent of them.”

The rewrite of the solemn assembly now has parents and godparents no longer having to “repent sins” and “rejecting the devil” during christenings in the Church of England.

This is a stunning collapse to political correctness, if ever there was one. Our father was actually heard to chortle with glee which is a pleasant change from his usual grumpy self. That they have attempted to do away with our Leader is a stunning display of hubris and pride. What they have done is open the way to an even deeper invasion of Our Father into the church’s territory.

That these changes are backed by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and already in practice in 1,000 parishes is a stunning victory for us, Wormwood.

The very fact that they are asked to “reject evil, and all its many forms, and all its empty promises” – with no mention of the devil or sin, is a brilliant move thus consigning even more into our camp. It is a victory even greater than sodomite marriages being slowly accepted through the Pilling Report. Another noble victory for our side.

We also like the fact that the new text, to be tested in a trial lasting until Easter, also drops the word “submit” in the phrase “Do you submit to Christ as Lord?” because it is thought to have become “problematical”, especially among women who object to the idea of submission. This is classic submission to feminism, Wormwood. Another triumphant moment.

We are hearing that some Church of England priests are actually preaching from their pulpits that there is no longer a literal Devil. What news, indeed.

We have successfully carried out the biggest theological coup ever attempted. We have made them believe that they have killed off the Devil. To the collective mind of secular man and not a few clergy, there is no Devil. Imagine that. This accomplishment tops their earlier elimination of the concept of Sin now bandied about by Episcopal leaders in the American Episcopal Church.

Speaking of which, we were particularly delighted to learn this past week that Atlanta Episcopal Bishop Rob Wright urged a rededication to “common good” at an interfaith inaugural worship service at Cascade United Methodist Church with these words, “Greetings to you in the name of Yahweh the Almighty, in the name of Allah the beneficent and merciful. Greetings to you in the name of the Eternal One who gave the Buddha his great enlightenment, and in the name of the Hindus’ Supreme Being that orders the cosmos.”

One wonders if these bishops learned anything in seminary at all about their faith with all its exclusive claims. We particularly liked these lines of his, “Greetings in the name of generosity and human compassion that guides some of us who claim no faith at all. Greetings to you to in the name of Jesus of Nazareth through whom many of us hear the words of God.”

We love the one option among many notions. Reducing all these faiths to a common denominator of the “good” the “generous” and the “compassionate” plays right into our hands. It is sweet music to our father’s ears.

Mohammed, the “compassionate”, is with us and winces when he is made to hear these words. This Gnostic interfaith rubbish is precisely the direction we want everyone to move towards. Reducing their savior to one among many saviors is precisely the direction we want to see the whole church heading.

We especially like the subtlety of the bishop’s comments here, “We have a mayor that understands that God speaks in many tongues and that all of those wonderful tongues and traditions are important to address and honor. Especially because when we get past the ego that sometimes infects our time together, we realize that each tradition at its core and at its best agrees that the cosmos has a brilliant and benevolent bent and that all creation and every human being has worth and dignity that is non-negotiable.”

I doubt we could have said it more brilliantly. Making ANYONE who feels they have an exclusive gospel claim feel like they are fundamentalists and literalists who should be ashamed of themselves is precisely the way to go. Any talk of sin and salvation and ghastly talk of a cross and notions of a “suffering servant” must be expunged for the higher “truth” of humanity’s greatness and liberation from all such notions of his fallenness.

I expect to hear more from you Wormwood about the ongoing decline of the Episcopal Church. We hear they might have to sell their precious headquarters in NYC for money to continue litigation over properties is good news. When they have spent their last penny we will take them. Death will be their final existential reality. Our father can’t wait; meanwhile he is exercising considerable restraint especially as how he doesn’t exist anymore.

Your affectionate Uncle,