Buzz King: Faith in a post-faith world

Being spiritual and upbeat in a world that is hostile toward believers.

Coffee ice cream

January 16th, 2022

When I was a boy, I met my mother's father for the first and only time - and besides him buying me coffee ice cream, which I found disgusting - I learned that he was very anti-Semitic.  We look at 2nd Corinthians, where Paul tells us that each of us has an opportunity to leave our old life behind and being a new life.  I gently challenged my grandfather on his behavior.  Will my grandfather choose to begin a new life?

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Listen to him

January 9th, 2022

The New Testament uses the Old Testament heavily, as a way of legitimizing Jesus' role as the Messiah and the last prophet.  We look at Moses' statement that a prophet from among the Israelites will rise up - and that we should listen to him.  We see that passage echoed in both Acts and the Gospel of Matthew.  I take a humorous look at a sister at my Catholic grammar school who caught me not paying attention in class, and yelled at me to listen to her.  But the sober truth is that there is only one person to whom we must ALWAYS listen.

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Lemonade

January 2nd, 2022

When I was a very young teenager I got a job installing a sprinkler system in the desert in the summer. I proceeded to have a massive asthma attack.  The reaction of the woman who hired me - and the trust she had in her faith - reminds me of the widow with a young son who gives the last of their food to the prophet Elijah.

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A Christmas blessing

December 24th, 2021

We look at the biblical use of a father's blessing for his son (in particular, Isaac's blessing of Jacob) as a metaphor for God's blessing for us.  I also remember, when I was a box boy in high school, being sent around town to collect stolen shopping carts, and a woman cursing at me when she saw me hop the wall into her backyard to retrieve a cart, and how she ended up blessing me.

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Shepherds

December 20th, 2021

As followers of Jesus, as people who believe in living the way that Jesus lived - with empathy, forgiveness, and grace for all - we inherit the responsibility to act as shepherds for people in spiritual and emotional need.  I look at a brief encounter where my wife and I came upon a lonely person displaced by a forest fire.

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Free!

December 12th, 2021

I stood in an ICU room with a young woman whose mother was dying.  She told me about the sacrifice her mother had made.  Fifteen years before, her mother had left home, traveled from the east coast to Colorado, to raise the children of her other daughter, who had died.  Then, the day before she was due to finally go home to her husband and her other daughter - after fifteen years - she suddenly had a massive stroke and would never awake again.  

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Blessed are those who thirst

December 6th, 2021

We are told that those who thirst will be blessed, and if we drink the spiritual water offered by Jesus, we will never thirst again.  But how do we remain willing and motivated to search out God in our lives after we have that first, great thirst that is satisfied?  

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The first gentile Christian

November 28th, 2021

We look at the first gentile who is documented in the Bible as being baptized, and we consider a man who was sick in the hospital and who considered himself a Christian, and yet wanted to finally be formally baptized.  We see that in both cases, an individual must make the commitment and go from being a believer to being a fully committed believer.

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Waves

November 21st, 2021

I grew up in Southern California.  When I was young, I tried very hard to learn to surf.  I never became much of a surfer: I was tossed around badly by the waves.  We look at the Book of James where we are told that our faith must not be weak, like a wave blown by the wind.  In Ephesians, we are told that our faith must not be tossed to and fro by waves.  We look at the use of ocean waves as a metaphor for the intense power that our faith must be able to withstand.  

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A God who is both high and low

November 14th, 2021

Many people are turned off to Christianity because they have been taught a narrow, limited "Old Testament" notion of God.  They believe that God is punitive, cruel, self-indulgent, even pompous - the ultimate Hollywood celebrity.  What these people do not know is that the Christian God is indeed the God of the Old Testament (as well as the New Testament), but that God is both high and low at the same time.  Our God will become humble in order to reach down and help us.

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