Category: Prayer

Should we talk to dead saints?

As part of the beatification process of Pope John Paul II, Sister Marie Simon-Pierre has testified that she was cured through the intercession of the late Pope. Because the Pope is involved, many Protestants will grumble. But how many others haven't flocked to be prayed for by some pastor or evangelist, especially if the word on the street is that when these representatives get involved, people are healed? It is…  [more]

Looking for answers in Arizona

I've spent time with Gabrielle Giffords. We were not friends or hardly even acquaintances, but on several occasions we shared a dais or a banquet table when she was the featured speaker, and I was asked to do an invocation or a closing prayer at a high school graduation or some other such event. I found her to be warm and kind and someone who was easy to talk to. We once had quite a conversation about the…  [more]

Does It Matter If Your Country Has A National Day of Prayer?

Today is the National Day of Prayer in the U.S., a time designated by Congress to turn to God for prayer and meditation. We asked this question on our Facebook page: Does it matter to you if your country has a National Day of Prayer or not? Here are some of the responses: Candace Weiss wrote, "No, because every day should be a day of prayer." Jamie Dunegan said, "We should all pray daily. But, a national day…  [more]

Why Elective Surgery Got Me Thinking About Prayer Priorities

Several weeks ago, I wrote about some experiences from a recent trip to India.  The part I didn’t mention was the main reason for the trip was to get Lasik eye surgery.  Many of you are probably having the same reaction as our friends and family thinking my wife and I were crazy for doing such a thing.  But we’d worked out the numbers and it was far cheaper and the technology was newer than at lots of places…  [more]

Taking Up A Cause For Lent

I’ve read two articles recently focusing on how Christians can come together to support a larger cause when it comes to making sacrifices or showing compassion for Lent. A group of Anglican British bishops are urging Christians to reduce their carbon footprint during Lent.  According to the USA Today, the bishops are asking people to at least go a day without using their iPod, cell phone or other technology. …  [more]

Why China?

“We’ve decided to adopt from China?” I’d announce. “Really! Why?” was usually the standard answer. Then came, “You know there are lots of babies who need good homes right here in the United States.” I knew. And I’d seen some of their faces on adoption websites. It was gut-wrenching to read about them. The more I investigated the adoption process in the United States, the more I discovered our…  [more]

Prayer in culture

The best selling book of 1955 was Norman Vincent Peale’s The Power of Positive Thinking. I recently read parts of the book as part of some research I was doing on that era. There are a lot of things about Peale’s version of Christianity that troubled me, and here is one example: Just as there exist scientific techniques for the release of atomic energy, so are there scientific procedures for the release of…  [more]

This post about overconfidence will definitely be excellent

Malcolm Gladwell's recent article in the New Yorker argues that Wall Street's recent meltdown may not have been due to a lack of regulation or a lack of information, but a surplus of overconfidence. He looks at the pros and cons of overconfidence for world affairs and economics, and concludes: From an individual perspective, it is hard to distinguish between the times when excessive optimism is good and…  [more]

Praying on Tape

I recently viewed some clips of the documentary Hell House. It seemed similar in tone and style to Jesus Camp, as both filmmakers were not initially sympathetic to their subjects, but also committed to letting them represent themselves. And, both films feature Christians in middle America who are politically conservative and charismatic in their worship style. I remember reading about Jesus Camp that while many…  [more]

A cheery Happy 500th Birthday to a non-dour Reformer: John Calvin

The problem with turning 500 is that you start to sound old. John Calvin, who was born 500 years ago today, will be remembered by many today as a dour old codger who loved to talk about sin and depravity, someone who was always in a bad mood. It's true that Calvin had his grumpy moments—although I probably would too if I suffered from constant intestinal disorders and a battery of other chronic…  [more]

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