A Kingdom Perspective on the Pandemic–Part 2

Pain is an unwelcome friend.

Nobody likes it when it shows up, but it often is the alarm that tells us something else is wrong.

Without it we may not got to the doctor before it is too late, and we wouldn’t know to pull our hand out of the fire, or to stop running on a bad knee.

Pandemics are a sharp, undeniable pain we cannot ignore.

They are an alarm for a problem we have learned to live with in ordinary times.

Between 250,000 and 500,000 people around the world die each year from the flu, but somehow we have decided that is acceptable. The sad reality is that the pain hasn’t been bad enough yet to focus the full attention of humanity on solving the problem of this part of nature’s rebellion against God and man. Continue reading…

A Kingdom Perspective on the Pandemic–Part I

Christians have responded in different ways to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Some have made their response an issue of faith, as if Christians full of faith have never died from an illness.

Others have simply adopted the current political opinion of their preferred political part, contending on side the pandemic is a crises overblown by the media to attack President Trump, or on the other that it is a disaster brought on by President Trump’s incompetence.

None of these response are helpful, and none are particularly Christian. Continue reading…

Why We Have to Wait for the Lord

Earlier this year a friend prayed for me.

In the midst of the prayer he stopped and told me he felt the Lord was giving him a verse for me: Isaiah 40:31.

He told me how I had been faithful in waiting on the Lord and then told me some of the things he felt the Lord was going to do for me in the near future consistent with Isaiah 40:31. It was so positive, I couldn’t help but wonder if he had confused his hopes for me as a friend with the voice of the Lord. I was ready to dismiss his encouraging words as just that.

Two days later my legal assistant gave me a thank you card for some flowers I had bought her the week before. On the thank you card she had written, “Isaiah 40:31.” I asked her why she had written that verse. She replied that she had prayed and specifically asked the Lord for a word for me and that is what He had given her. At that point there was no doubt my friend had heard from the Lord two days earlier when he gave me the same word. So, I began to study Isaiah 40:31.

Isaiah 40:31 reads:

Yet those who wait for the Lord

Will gain new strength;

They will mount up with wings like eagles,

They will run and not get tired,

They will walk and not become weary.

When I began studying this verse, I did what I often do when studying the Bible: I asked questions, specifically, “Why do we have to wait upon the Lord?” It’s  a fair question, and there is actually a very good answer. That answer is, time. Continue reading…

Viking Travel Journal––Epilogue

Replica Viking longship at Reykjavik museum

On the plane on the way back home, I watched the movie,Tolkien.

I enjoyed the movie, and highly recommend it.

But the movie failed to demonstrate the influence of Christianity in Tolkien’s life and his writing.

It was a fitting end to our Viking Travel Journal.

It reminded me of the uniqueness of the perspective of the GSB blog in general and the GSB travel journals specifically.

Historians write to impress other secular historians.

The travel industry is motivated to entertain the general public.

Neither are interested in showing how King Jesus has transformed and is transforming the world into the place He originally intended.

So, historians delve into Norse mythology hoping to find some nuance others have missed. Tourist guides,seeking to entertain their guests, tell their silly folk legends about trolls and elves. And, as a result, people miss out on the evidence of the most important event that has been in process for the last 2,000 years––the redemption of the planet by Jesus of Nazareth.

Continue reading…

Viking Travel Journal––Day 15

Lava fields in Iceland

Reykjavik is a genuine city.

Unfortunately we only had one day here.

Our excursion was well-chosen.

So many had signed up for the Blue Lagoon excursion so early that it was booked before the cruise began. After we got on the ship we learned the hot water doesn’t come directly out of the ground into the lagoon but runs through the geothermal plant before being dumped into the lagoon. Then they mentioned repeatedly that one had to get fully naked and shower before getting in the lagoon. On top of that it was cold again today. Bottom line: people lined up to drop out of the Blue Lagoon excursion today. Continue reading…