- January 26, 2011
We have a burden we cannot carry by ourselves. This burden has to do with our dear friends who live across the Rio Grande border of our state.
They are the same brothers and sisters with whom we have worked so closely for three decades. They are the same Christian stalwarts who helped us build churches, train new Christians and develop self-help programs for thousands of indigent people. These are the same God-fearing people who labored with our Texas Baptist churches to see a mission field come alive with creative ways to bring people to Jesus.
These, our Christian friends, are hurting. The violence that now dominates northern Mexico is seriously hurting many. Please pay attention to the local Texas border missionaries. They know how to help. Pray for Daniel Rangel, the River Ministry director. He will be leading out with helpful information at the River Ministry retreats currently being held.
Any way we can let the Christian people in Mexico know they have not been forgotten is good.
Friends, we have prayed for God’s intervention many times before concerning the border work. So, let’s make this a concerted effort.
Elmin & Betty Howell
Tolerance for songs
I grew up with a King James Bible. Then the Living Bible came in. Soon, the New American Standard, then New International Version, then English Standard Version, and now the Holman. It wasn’t a problem, just a little harder to follow along when we read out loud in church.
But when someone started singing “newer” songs, trouble started. And when someone raised their hands. Oh, my, big trouble.
Why were we Baptists so tolerant of newer translations of the Bible—with a few exceptions—but so intolerant of newer songs and other expressions of our faith?
I’ve not yet heard of a church having a King James Version early service and a New American Standard Version late service. What does this say about us?
Worship vs. show biz
On rare occasions, our choir sings something so good that there is no applause, just reverent silence.
Time was when as a call to worship we sang the Doxology. Today, it would be more appropriate to begin the service with “There’s no Business Like Show Business.”
Harry as Christ figure
To think of Harry Potter as a “an example of a Christ figure in contemporary fiction” (Dec. 13) takes some convoluted logic and an excessive stretch of the imagination.
In Star Wars, there was a reference to “The Force” as a mystical being with powers, but was that the God of Abraham? This perversion of Christianity creates the foundations for cults like Jim Jones, David Koresh and the name of the man that I can’t remember who was the self-professed leader of (a) church that threw his children off the balcony of a highrise hotel, killing all except one, who survived by landing on a wrought-iron fence.
Should we change Christmas to Harrymas? I’ve noticed that whenever this contemporary change occurs, power and/or money are the bottom line. The God of Abraham and Jesus Christ do not need to be reinvented or made contemporary.