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WARNING: Toddler Suffers 2nd-Degree Burns After Mom Fills Kiddie Pool Up With Garden Hose

“We got a ton of tweets back from people saying ‘I never thought about that,’ and that’s why we do it.”

School Forces Student to Take Jesus Out of Graduation Speech, Plan Gloriously Backfires When She Drops This Line

“I’ve always been a rule follower. When they said not to chew gum, I didn’t chew gum. When they said not to use your cellphone, I didn’t use my cellphone. But today, in the spirit of defying expectations, and for perhaps the last time at this podium, I say..."

“The Spirit Led Me to Pray for Her”: Woman Snaps Powerful Pic of Chick-fil-A Worker Praying Over Customer

“I work at a place where if I’m led to pray for someone, I’m able to do that and I’ll do it right on the spot. People need prayer, encouragement, and love. That’s what we try to do here.”

F-Bombs and Bikinis: What It Really Means to Be a “Christian”

Christian subcultures are an entertaining phenomenon and one can wonder what it means to be a Christian these days. Multiple brands of Christianity claim the same Lord and read the same Bible, and yet they promote a set of values sometimes as different as apples and orangutans.

I once heard a story about a Christian woman from the East Coast who confronted a West Coast youth-pastor, who allowed “mixed bathing” at youth events. “I can’t believe any so-called Christian leader would allow boys and girls to swim together!” She expressed her concern, all the while puffing on a cigarette. The youth pastor couldn’t help but smile, speechless at the irony.

I attended a conservative Brethren church when I lived in Scotland. Some of the women wore head coverings and none of them spoke in church. When I had our Irish pastor and his wife over for dinner, I asked them what he would like to drink. “Beer please,” the preacher said. “And for you, madam?” “I’ll take a glass of Chardonnay, thank you.” Were they liberal or conservative? I guess it depends on which subculture you come from.

When you try to cut out Christians with a religious cookie cutter, you not only tarnish diversity, but you trample on grace. It’s one thing for Christian subcultures to cultivate unique values. But it becomes destructive when those values are chiseled on Sinaitic tablets for all to obey.

It’s even worse when Christians expect instant holiness from recent converts—holiness, that is, in areas where we think we’ve nailed it.

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It’s a shame that some believers have scoffed at some of Shia Labeouf’s recent comments about converting to Christianity, pointing fingers at the fact that he still uses bad language weeks after becoming a Christian. It’s worth noting that some are speculating that Labeouf’s conversion may have actually been more of a rather dramatic example of method acting than a true conversion but, regardless, many Christians chose to focus on his language instead of his heart. God only knows the true believers from the false. But to judge a man’s faith because there’s a residue of potty mouth?

Bad language may take years to weed out. Even more difficult to extract is the pride that drives judgmental Christians to mock the Spirit’s work in a man seeking his Creator. That sin could take decades to discover. Grace means that we are all works in progress, and God shaves off our rough edges in His timing. Just look at the thugs God works with in the Bible.

I know we’re programmed to see the 12 apostles as saints with halos and contemplative faces. But actually, they were criminals. These guys were more like prisoners than pastors, and few of them would have been let inside our churches today.

Take Peter, for instance. Peter walked with Jesus for three years, witnessing miracle after miracle, sermon after sermon. Still, on the night before Jesus’ death, a servant girl asked Peter if he knew Jesus. “I do not know the man!” Peter responded. And he even evoked a curse on himself to prove he wasn’t lying (Matthew 26:74).

WARNING: Toddler Suffers 2nd-Degree Burns After Mom Fills Kiddie Pool Up With Garden Hose

“We got a ton of tweets back from people saying ‘I never thought about that,’ and that’s why we do it.”

School Forces Student to Take Jesus Out of Graduation Speech, Plan Gloriously Backfires When She Drops This Line

“I’ve always been a rule follower. When they said not to chew gum, I didn’t chew gum. When they said not to use your cellphone, I didn’t use my cellphone. But today, in the spirit of defying expectations, and for perhaps the last time at this podium, I say..."

“The Spirit Led Me to Pray for Her”: Woman Snaps Powerful Pic of Chick-fil-A Worker Praying Over Customer

“I work at a place where if I’m led to pray for someone, I’m able to do that and I’ll do it right on the spot. People need prayer, encouragement, and love. That’s what we try to do here.”