“Sing, Sing a Song”

Children singingKaren Carpenter

Is there anybody else who, when they hear a song from a certain group or artist…no matter how much they enjoy it…cannot help but feel some sadness because of what happened to someone involved with the tune?

For me, this is true when I hear a Carpenters hit. Are you familiar with that brother-sister group, Richard and Karen Carpenter? Anyone know why I feel a little depression when I hear their music?

That’s right…Karen’s life was cut way too short. She was only 32 when heart failure took her away from us. However, the underlying reason for her death was anorexia…something she apparently battled from her teenage years thanks to being called “chubby.”1

Based on that last bit of info, I could do a sermon about what how we should control our words…for instance:

29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear (Ephesians 4:29)

Do you think that those who called teenage Karen “chubby” were building her up, had words fitting words for the occasion, or were giving grace to those who hear?

Grace to Karen? [Read more…]

Verboten at 30,000 Feet

Famous Last Words

When someone is going to leave for a very long time…especially when that "long time" is death itself…we have a habit of putting great weight on their last words.

  • With some, perhaps it is an attempt at reconciliation before there is no more chance to right the wrong.
  • With others, perhaps it is an opportunity to impart some comfort before the guaranteed pain of separation.
  • Or maybe it's just one more occasion to let those you are leaving behind know just how much you love them.
  • Sometimes…however…it is the opportune time to share your last wishes…what you want those beholden to you to do after you go away…a dying man's request of sorts…

Great Commission

From Acts we know that Jesus spent 40 days appearing to his disciples "and speaking about the kingdom of God" (Acts 1:3). We are going to look at His final words as recorded by Matthew. They may not be part of what He said just prior to his ascension, but they definitely seem like they might…and, regardless, the Holy Spirit inspired Matthew to include them as the very end of his Gospel—which implies significance. Let's take a look at Matthew 28:16-20 together:

[Read more…]