Ponderings for November 4 2019

On a chilly fall Monday, I am pondering about:
  • The holiday season—and, among other things, weight gain. A few weeks ago the scale demanded I lose seven pounds. By Thanksgiving. No problem. Then Halloween and Reese Cups and Snickers bars all appeared. I have been trying to work out even more than usual…but then weddings and regular breakfast and lunch appointments keep getting in the way. I find myself deep within the tension between the joy of food and friendship and the discipline of eating wisely. A wise Apostle once wrote: “I buffet my body to make it my slave.” No tension there: I am in charge of my will and my appetite.
  • Kanye—Until last week and his new album dropped, I can’t say I ever paid Kanye West much mind. But when Jesus Is King released last week, suddenly everybody (young and old, Christian and non) is talking about it, and several have asked me what I as a pastor think about his conversion (e.g., is it legit?). First, let me say I am in no place to evaluate another person’s conversion, especially from thousands of miles away and of someone I’ve never met. But I also know that such a question comes from a very skeptical “keeper of the keys” mentality that thinks Kanye has to be a fraud. How sad. I was looking at some of his lyrics and these words from the song “Hands On” jumped out at me: What have you been hearin’ from the Christians? / They’ll be the first one to judge me. / Make it feel like nobody love me. Ouch. And sadly, I am afraid that is true.
Secondly, though I don’t know Kanye, I do know Christ. I know that the Lord is in the business of wooing those who have lived their lives without him and who have made idols of themselves (Kanye sang in the past, “I am a God”). And, like many of us reading this, Christ powerfully changed us. Maybe it will happen to Kanye.
This phenomenon has certainly gotten many people’s attention. Here’s a way to pray and speak about this to those at school or work who are wondering or even spiritually curious about what Kanye is singing about: Let them know that every Sunday at Trinity we speak and sing about Jesus. It would be just fine if some young people made their way to Trinity to hear more about Christ because Kanye’s music awakened them to God. Thirdly, I and the three other Trinity pastors dialogued about this very topic on the Trinity Equip podcast. You can find it here: www.trinitymentor.com/podcast
Okay, more later.
In the meantime, don’t forget to read the Book of Ruth. For this week, we will be walking through the second chapter—a “chance” meeting, or the providence of God?
Hope your week gets off to a good start.
Pastor Paul