Followers

Search This Blog

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Flying Honestly!

Flying Honestly!
By Michael Galloway

It is definitely a traveling season! I would daresay that most Americans in the past month have probably flown, or driven somewhere to visit family, to vacation, or to visit friends. What would you have done had you found $10,000 dollars of cash in two envelopes in an airport? Would you have thought that there was no way to find the real owners of this money? That it was finder's keepers? Or maybe you would have even thought I will try to return the money. What if the airport had told you it was against the rules to take down the details of what you had found. I would guess that most of us would have stopped there and been content to say that we had tried to do what was right, and then kept the money for ourselves. Mitch Gilbert of Colorado didn't stop there. When he found two envelopes that contained ten thousand dollars in cash at McCarren International Airport in Las Vegas he decided that he was going to show his kids what the right thing to do was. When the airport told him that it was against the rules to take down the details he kept calling and asking if anyone had reported the two envelopes missing. Finally a man from El Paso, TX reported the money missing and Gilbert returned the money to him. 

What an example Gilbert was not only to his kids but also to the world. He showed us the importance of going the extra mile in being honest. The Bible teaches the principle of integrity. 2 Corinthians 8:21 tells us "For we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord's sight but also in the sight of men." The Bible goes on and tells us in Luke 6:31, "And as you wish that others would do to you, do also to them."

It is hard to know how we would react in a situation such as Gilbert found himself in until we are there. I would hope that each and everyone of us would have the courage and insight that Gilbert had to do what was right not only to be an example to others but in order to please God. Let us all use his actions as encouragement and inspiration as we go throughout this next week and year.

Monday, December 19, 2011

The “changing role of Christianity”?

The “changing role of Christianity”?
By Michael Galloway

Barna Research recently studied the top religious trends of 2011. One of the top trends according to them was the “changing role of Christianity”. Barna said, “This year, Barna Group delved into many subjects of faith and culture, including the changing role of faith and Christianity. One of those shifts is the relative unknown nature of Christian leaders. Only Billy Graham, the Pope, Barack Obama and Joel Osteen were mentioned by more than 1 out of 50 adults as the most significant Christian leaders. What’s more, 41% of Americans are unable to identify any individual who they consider to be an influential Christian.”
As I read this study by Barna in some ways I was stunned. First I was stunned that only Billy Graham, Joel Osteen, the Pope, and Barack Obama were mentioned by more than 1 out of 50 adults as the most significant Christian leaders. Secondly I was surprised that 41% of Americans are unable to identify ANY individual whom they consider to be an influential Christian. Based on this study I believe there are several things that we must do.

1) It would be prudent for us to realize that there is no reason to look for Christianity to change. Jesus is the head of the church (Eph. 1:22). Jesus hasn’t given us a new guidebook, or way to look at Christianity. In fact, the Bible that was written 2000 years ago still relates to us today, and gives us all direction that we need.

2) We must promote Jesus to our society. The greatest and most significant leader the world will ever have is Jesus Christ. Jesus is the only leader who is the son of God. He is the only leader who came and died for us. Joel Osteen, Billy Graham, the Pope, and Barack Obama never came and died for us, and made eternal life possible.

3) We must influence the world around us by using the teachings and actions of Jesus. When 41% of the world fails to name a single person whom they consider to be an influential Christian, the Church overall is not doing its job of being that light to the world (Matthew 5:14-16). We must stop being afraid of what the world might think, and start being instead afraid of what Jesus might think if we fail to influence the world. Our world is not opposed to the influence of the church, they are just not being influenced. Barna said that 19/20 adults believes the church is a positive influence, and 75% of Americans believe that churches are a positive factor in their communities. Let your light shine, don’t let Satan poof it out.

In 2012 let’s influence the world through the teachings of Jesus.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Day of Infamy!

December 7th, 1941. If you are like me that date sparks emotion and thought. It was a day of deceit, death, surprise, and much loss. It was a date in which the United States were caught unprepared. If you didn't realize it, it is the date that Pearl Harbor was attacked by the Empire of Japan. When I think of that date the first thing that comes to my mind is President Roosevelt's speech as he asked Congress to declare war. President Roosevelt starts off his speech by saying "Yesterday, December 7, 1941- a date which will live in infamy- the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan..." President Roosevelt was reminding us that we will remember what happened for a long time. This past Wednesday was the 70th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. As I reflected on that day I had several thoughts that I felt were prudent to share in relation to our spiritual lives.

1) There will be a day that is coming which we will remember for a much longer time then the date in which Pearl Harbor was attacked. Judgment Day will one day come. The Bible has warned us of the great day that is coming. 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18.

2) Just like the attack on Pearl Harbor took so many by surprise, Judgment Day will come as a surprise to many as well. The Bible tells us that it will be like a thief in the night. We don't know when this day is coming. It may come in our lifetime, it may not. We do have a responsibility to be prepared when it comes. 1 Thessalonians 5:2-4. 


3) December 7th, 1941 was day in which the United States lost quite a bit in the realms of life, and the ships in the naval fleet. I think historically it would be safe to say that the Japanese came out the victors of that battle (although they would not go on to win the war). Judgment Day will be a day in which there will be many losers, and few winners. Matthew 7:13-14.

4) The United States wishes that they had been better prepared for the Japanese. There were many warnings that were ignored, and as a result Pearl Harbor was caught by complete surprise at 7:55 a.m. as the attack began. The Bible gives us many warning about the day of judgment. Sadly there are many that are ignoring the warnings.

5) It has become obvious the amount of preparation that the Japanese put into their attack on Pearl Harbor as  it had been in the planning stages for several days and weeks before the attack. Although this attack will be remembered for years to come by the people of the United States.There will come a day that has been planned for thousands of years. The Bible tells us that we don't know when it will happen, however we must be prepared. This day of judgment will last FOREVER. This day will truly affect all of mankind.

The question is are you ready for the day that is coming? If not I would encourage you to look to the Bible for directions on how to be prepared.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Tebowing!

Tebowing!
By Michael Galloway

I will admit that I have always been intrigued by Tim Tebow. It is not that I have been a fan of the teams that he has played for, or even that I agree with some of the religious views that he holds. I have always been amazed by his willingness to do something that sadly many of us are too scared to do, won’t do, or maybe even haven’t figured out how to do it. Tebow is an example that we can all take to heart as we think about how we are supposed to let our lights shine (Matthew 5:15) and not conform to the world. Here are a couple of the things that Tebow does so well:

1) He finds ways to bring religion into conversation. Almost every time you see Tebow on television you will also hear or see something that has to do with “Christianity”. Jesus did this as well in John 4. How well do we do this (including me)?

2) He is not ashamed of the gospel of Christ.  Tebow doesn’t care what people think about what he does. I believe that many times we are scared of what people might think or say about our religion. Paul says in Romans 1:16 that he is not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. Are we?

3) He prays. Tebow prays so often that people are referring to what he does as Tebowing. What an example. How often do we pray? 1 Thessalonians 5:17

4) He attempts to give God credit for his success. Tebow realizes that God is in charge. He is always giving God credit for his success how often do we do this? James 4:10

I realize that Tebow is not someone who follows New Testament Christianity. I also realize that Tebow is not afraid to let people know what he does believe. He says that his reasons for this are as follows as he responds to some things that others have said about how he carries himself: Well, first I'd say, thank you for the compliment of calling me a winner and then I'd also say if you're married and you're a [husband] is it good enough to only say you love her on the day you get married or should you tell her every single day when you wake up and have an opportunity? And that's how I feel about my relationship with Jesus Christ. It is the most important thing in my life so anytime I get an opportunity to tell him that I love him or give him an opportunity to shout him out on national TV, I'm gonna take that opportunity…”(ESPN). Do we have the same attitude as Tim Tebow? Are we Tebowing?