Tag Archives: cell phones

Why Texting And Driving Don’t Mix

The British public service announcement was banned from U.S. airwaves because it was deemed too shocking. Yet, it spread like wildfire across the Internet. If you don’t remember it or haven’t seen it, you can watch the video above.

Five teenage girls are driving down the road, talking about boyfriends and school. The driver of the car is texting a friend on her cell phone when she veers across the road and hits another car head-on and then is hit from the side by another car.

Despite wearing their seat belts, the driver is killed while her friend sits beside her, horrified that her friend is dead.

The graphic video proves why texting and driving don’t mix. But the underlying problem affects not only our driving, but our relationship with God.

Please join us as we delve into this topic in our daily Bible conversation.

TODAY’S READING

Jeremiah 2:31-4:18
Colossians 1:1-17
Psalm 76:1-12
Proverbs 24:21-22

INSIGHTS AND EXPLANATIONS

Jeremiah 2:31-4:18. God addresses Israel from the perspective of a husband whose wife has been unfaithful. He asks Israel, “If a man divorces his wife and she leaves him and marries another man, should he return to her again?” (Jeremiah 3:1) He poses this question because the divorce law in Deuteronomy 24:1–4 prohibited a woman who had been divorced and who had married another man from ever returning to her first husband.

God then compares faithless Israel with unfaithful Judah. To their credit, Israel didn’t claim to follow God—they were faithless. But the people of Judah considered themselves followers of Yahweh, yet in their unfaithfulness they tried to hide their sin.

Colossians 1:1-17. Paul sent three letters from Rome with Tychicus and Onesimus: Colossians, Philemon, and Ephesians. While the church in Ephesus was pretty healthy, trouble was brewing in Colossae. A heretical teaching was going around that scholars to this day are trying to identify. The ESV Study Bible explains:

What likely happened at Colossae is that a shaman-like figure within the church had attracted a following and was presenting himself as something of a Christian spiritual guide (cf. “his sensuous mind,” Colossians 2:18). This person probably claimed to have superior insight into the spiritual realm and was advising the Colossian Christians to practice certain rites, taboos, and rituals as a means of protection from evil spirits and for deliverance from afflictions.

Resorting to these practices effectively denigrated the superiority of Christ. For this reason, Paul sought to expose the inferiority of placing our trust in rules and rituals and restoring their understanding of the predominance of Christ.

If you’ve found A Daily Bible Conversation helpful, share it with your friends! Forward your daily email or send them a link to the website: http://www.bibleconversation.com.

THE WORD MADE FRESH

Even as a pastor, I must admit that I can spend an entire day ignoring God. I engage in conversations and plan upcoming meetings without recognizing God’s presence with me. He desires to be more than a part of my life, but all too often I resemble the actions of Judah, whom God laments, “My people have forgotten me, days without number” (Jeremiah 2:32).

Through the prophet Isaiah, God likens his relationship with Israel and Judah to the relationship between a husband and wife. This is an ongoing theme throughout Scripture, especially in Hosea.

In Jeremiah 3:1, he exposes their unfaithfulness: “You have lived as a prostitute with many lovers.” God’s bride prostituted herself to the many gods of her culture.

In the same way, we can prostitute ourselves to the many gods of our culture. Some of these gods are easy to identify. Immorality and indulgence are two that come to mind. But on further reflection, many gods we contend with today are very subtle. They present themselves in the form of entertainment, work, materialism, and busyness. The list is endless.

In their proper, biblical place, these “vices” aren’t inherently evil or wrong. It’s like texting and driving. Texting isn’t wrong, nor is driving a car. But put them together and they become tragic.

The problem lies in the distraction. When I’m driving my car and I get distracted by a text message, problems happen.

In the same way, I so easily allow my everyday life to distract me from my relationship with God. All too often, our pursuit of leisure or entertainment subtly distracts us from our most important relationship. God becomes a part of our life when he wants to be our life. The result can be tragic.

Please don’t text and drive. And please don’t allow your everyday life to distract you from your most important relationship.

CONVERSATION STARTERS

  1. What spoke to you in today’s reading?
  2. Viewing your relationship with God from the perspective of a marriage relationship, how’s it going?
  3. What distracts people from their relationship with God?
  4. What distracts you from your relationship with God?

If you’re reading this blog on FaceBook and you’d like to join the conversation, click here.

www.bibleconversation.com

Michael co-pastors The Neighborhood Church with Eugene Scott in Littleton, Colorado.

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Do We Know too Much, See too Much, and Trust too Little?

Mt Sopris

Leaves rustle behind me. A field mouse burrows under the long, golden grass that is my seat. A crow croaks above, his wings send a windy squeak into the stillness. If clouds made noise as they scraped over the high mountain peaks, today I would hear it. It’s that quiet. Stillness. Peace. This day my world consists of the shifting sounds and changing colors of wilderness. The aspens stand on their milky trunks with their gray branches reaching for eternity. A doe and fawn skitter through the meadow, never realizing we are there. I can go only where I can walk, see only to the next ridge, talk only to my friend next to me. For a moment life has narrowed, simple. Glorious.

All this as somewhere war ravages, terrorists plan more cowardice, politicians puff up like self-important peacocks, philosophical debates rage, earthquakes rumble, economies tumble, hunger ravages, homelessness decimates, and world events vast as the sky mount. I know these things because the information age is upon me. Information technology speaks loudly and carries a big stick. But not here. Here I’m journaling about field mice, aspen trees, and crows. Would that our worlds could become this small and contained again.

Eugene C. Scott joins Mike in writing A Daily Bible Conversation twice a week.

TODAY’S READING (click here to view today’s reading online)

Isaiah: 33:13-36:22

Galatians 5:13-26

Psalm 64:1-10

Proverbs 23:23

INSIGHTS AND EXPLANATIONS

Isaiah: 33:13-36:22: This section of Isaiah describes small, powerless humans in contrast to a vast, fearful world, governed by a powerful seemingly distant, angry God. Rightly we tremble. But is God against us? Are we as vulnerable as we feel? No. “Be strong, do not fear; you God will come,” Isaiah tells us.

Psalm 64:1-10: Again this reading asks us about fear and faith and our place in God’s worlds and heart. Let us take refuge in God not in our own accomplishments and strength.

If you’ve found A Daily Bible Conversation helpful, share it with your friends. Forward your daily email or send them a link to the website: www.bibleconversation.com.

THE WORD MADE FRESH

Sitting in this meadow I slowly realize, once again, I lack what it takes to fight AIDS in Africa, prevent earthquakes in Pakistan, support the correct U.S. Supreme Court nominee in DC, house the homeless in Denver, adopt baby girls from China, save the environment, stop war, care for my family, stay fit, love my wife, read a good book, be a friend, love God, and figure out global warming all at the same time. I need it narrowed down. I can’t be global. I don’t have enough mind, heart, and soul to wrap around it all. Technology may have shrunk the globe to a village. But it’s still too big for me. In his book “SoulTsunami” Leonard Sweet writes, “Technology is outrunning our theology and ethics, leaving us panting, helpless anachronisms.” Anachronism I am.

Despite their enormity, at one time most human beings would never have heard about the tsunami and Gulf Coast tragedies, much less be given an opportunity to help. The sun would have risen and set on a day containing worries enough of its own. Each day we are bombarded by more information than we can assimilate or even care about. One of my professors put the dilemma this way: we are camel-age creatures living jet-age lives. Call God shortsighted if you like. We seem to have been designed to function best with narrower boundaries. Sometimes it feels as if a terrible wind has torn down the walls and ripped off the roof of life and we stand naked and exposed to every storm the world dreams up.

Obviously technology is not all bad. I have a nephew who would not be alive without modern communications and medical technology. And hot showers are remarkable. But there is the law of unintended consequences to deal with. The question is, how?

For me these retreats into the wilderness—back in time—help. Through them God enlarges my mind, heart, and soul. When I am hunting I sleept in a tent, have no cell phone access, no cable TV, no high speed Internet, and no idea what was going on in the world. But I am not out of touch. When the enormous worries of the world shove in, I lifted my eyes to the hills and asked, where does my help come from? In response I heard God whisper and even roar in the treetops: I Am here. Time slowed down as golden sunlight chased shadows across the green sage valley for the umpteenth time: I Am timeless, God said. I glimpsed the glistening eyes of my hunting partner: I see and love, God winked. Snow covered Mount Sopris towered, gleaming in the morning sun: I Am almighty, God assured. The weight of the world is on God’s shoulders. Maybe if I let God carry the weight, I can focus on and care about those things I can affect. Thanks God, for whispering louder than a myriad of modern, screaming voices. Thanks for holding the world in your hands. Thanks for narrowing the world down, if for just a moment.   

  1. What do these for passages share in common?
  2. How is God your refuge?
  3. What does your freedom in Christ look like?

If you’re reading this blog on Facebook and you’d like to join the conversation, click here. www.bibleconversation.com.

Eugene co-pastors The Neighborhood Church in Littleton, CO and writes a blog eugenesgodsightings.blogspot.com

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized