Things I Think

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59 Responses

  1. Pineapple Head says:

    I share most of the perspectives shared here.

  2. Xenia says:

    If we can’t find it in ourselves to love other traditions<<<

    Well I don't love other traditions. I love the people who are in them, however.

  3. pstrmike says:

    #1. Yep. The irony never ceases to amaze me.

  4. Traditions spring from families which value them, made up of individuals.
    Ask any individual about how they feel about their family traditions and they will candidly tell you how much they love this, hate that, put up with weird uncle so-and-so at family gatherings and pass on aunt so-and-so’s overly seasoned spiced dish when it’s passed to them.

    …another helping of brisket please 😉

  5. Jean says:

    I love the tradition… of Things I Think on Mondays 🙂

  6. Steve Wright says:

    I think the idea of a Christian worldview has a lot of merit, but how that shows itself in practice by Christians can certainly be open to debate.

    But it seems any reference to a Christian worldview would be in the context of something/someone other than churches/Christians. Such as a government or business. And thus, that is where the debate will center – the extent that such entities can/should direct their efforts. Often the law will decide that for us.

  7. Q says:

    It is amazing only 6-8? quarterbacks in the world can play at the level of Peyton Manning does.

    I think he may be getting kind of old to play (recovery gets harder), but who is better to replace him?

  8. Q says:

    Brock Osweilller was fortunate to sit and watch a true professional on and off the field, what an education if he was paying attention. Maybe he is next up.

  9. Jim says:

    Brock isn’t next up.

  10. I have never heard of Brock Osweilller – but I did go through this weekend without watching a single play of football or watch any red carpets or awards shows. Have you ever tried to get the remote away from a 4 yr or and a 6 yr old.?

    But if anyone has questions, I have the answers to all things Dora the Explorer and Peppa Pig.

  11. filbertz says:

    grace remains the Christian characteristic which ought to get the most mileage, but rarely gets taken out of the garage and driven.

    Yes, Go Ducks.

    Began a three month commitment to attend, as one poster suggested here recently, the closest neighborhood church to my house. It was intriguing & helpful.

    Amazon–my wife is a Prime shopper; I am old-school.

    I’m at the stage where most of my theology is simply senseless.

    The third of your Jesus-never trifecta is most powerful for me…disappointed. Hmmmm

  12. OCDan says:


    Amen to #5. Everything goes back to the two “Great Commandments” Jesus said that the law and prophets hang on. If we lived these out, everything else would fall into place.

    Something about seek ye first the kingdom and all else…

    If only we could do these as a Lord and Savior did/does/always will do.

    Besides how much theology can we debate/atomize/excommunicate/judge others over/beat others up over/etc. before we realize our tribe is just one….ourselves.

    Thanks for all you do. I really love this blog, even though I don’t comment often, I read it every day and am amazed at the gift our Lord has given you Michael. Keep up the great work for His kingdom.

  13. OCDan says:


    Love your comment about your senseless theology. The older I get, the more I just want to study the bible and read it as afresh as humanly possible. Then try, by God’s Spirit and power, to live it out.

    Look, I have reexamined so many biblical issues and realize that I just don’t know everything, the God’s part. Therefore, I have had to change my beliefs, i.e. rapture and all that brings, for one thing. Too much fundevangellifish teaching in that area. Now, I trust that Jesus will come back. That I am certain of.

    Anyway, had to comment because you made me chuckle, filbertz. Also, I couldn’t agree with you more about the grace part of your comment.

  14. Q says:

    Dora thinks football is a game called soccer and Peppa Pig has not developed skills to go to the next level.

    I don’t think even John Elway knows the future of Peyton or Brock, although Peyton’s contract is a your longer and that might put Brock on the trading block.

  15. Q says:

    your = or should be year 🙂

  16. Michael says:

    Thanks, OC Dan…that was very encouraging to hear today.

  17. Joe says:

    Its interesting, that some will honestly complain that learning too much theology is counter productive to a christian life. However, in contrast, youll never hear a believer complain of having too much of the Holy Spirit.

  18. Commando says:

    Where is that unity rally being held?

  19. Steve Wright says:

    Just heard Denver’s coach is out. Whether that speaks more to Manning also going or his insistence that his return requires a new coach is up for debate.

    The radio noted that Shanahan is a Denver resident, unemployed, and has a track record for taking an aging Denver QB to a Super Bowl victory….with same QB now in upper management

  20. Kevin H says:


    What I want to know is which Peppa Pig character do you greater identify with, Grandpa Pig or Grandad Dog? Or maybe Daddy Pig who claims to be an expert at everything?

  21. Kevin,
    Daddy Pig because I snort loudly. 🙂

  22. Randall Slack says:

    I don’t hate the church either; the problem I have is with the religious system that claims to be the church.

  23. Babylon's Dread says:

    As a Peyton Manning fan since he was born… I too have called for retirement. If he was not injured and until today they have covered his injuries as pretty ordinary, then he simply cannot throw the ball.

    I personally want him to play out his 5 year contract but I do not want to watch the Manning I have seen in the second half of this season. He has no velocity, no accuracy and no clue how to compensate… Since at least the St Louis Rams game I have waited for him to turn on the gas…. zilch nada zippo nothing…

    This Peyton fan doesn’t want to see more humiliation.

  24. Babylon's Dread says:

    Why would anyone need to assert “I do not hate the church?”

    I have also had plenty of grace people go ape graceless if I challenge their claims

    I was asked to speak on a program called CHRISTIAN WORLDVIEW so I asked which Christian worldview they had in mind only to be met with complete puzzlement.

    Go Duckeyes!!!

  25. E says:

    #17 Touche

  26. E says:

    When the Holy Spirit teaches you through word, through revelation its His theology. But when we feast on books and tapes its moldy manna. I see that the less Holy Spirit we have, the more theology we need to keep the church going. Nothing against theology, but there is NO substitute for the HOLY SPIRIT

  27. London says:

    People have to state they don’t hate the church because otherwise, as soon as they say a criticism of it, there will be people who accuse them if being haters and dismissing them and their words.

    I assume that’s what Michael meant, and he would be correct.

  28. Q says:

    John Fox leaving, genius. Who is talking about yesterday?

  29. E,
    You should try reading a book – perhaps it was Holy Spirit inspired.

    I know one thing – I never trust a person who says “the Holy Spirit told me…” outside of the word.

  30. Captain Kevin says:

    Some have overlooked that Michael said he doesn’t need to learn MORE theology. This man has read and processed more theology than just about anyone I know, and that’s a good thing. Don’t make the mistake of interpreting our host’s words to say that theology is worthless.

  31. Reuben says:

    Manning has nothing left in Colorado after today. He will dismiss himself. Gracefully.

  32. Captain Kevin says:

    The more I learn about grace, the more I want to worship God, and the more I realize just how graceless and pharisaical I tend to be.

  33. E says:

    You should try reading a book – perhaps it was Holy Spirit inspired.

    I know one thing – I never trust a person who says “the Holy Spirit told me…” outside of the word.

    @ MLD

    Your skepticism is warranted. But back in the early 90’s out in the Mohave Desert. The Holy Spirit, in a supernatural way made it very clear that He would teach me all things. And he has been very faithful to that. Im a purist of sorts so I listen to the bible and i read the bible. I have my strongs and vines when i need to deep deeper. And you know, I never once have been off into heresy nor led into a works or law type of Christianity. I was very vexed over what to embrace, as it relates too calvinism and arminianism. And after years of prayer and frustration, the Holy Spirit very super naturally showed me. Grace as it relates to the law and grace, calvinism is has it wrong.

  34. Scott says:

    Congratulations to the Oregon Ducks football team. They provided a lot excited moments this year. Heisman Marcus Mariota, was a first class dude on and off the field.

    Ohio State was the better team tonight and they deserved the win! I’m just glad they beat Alabama 😉

  35. E,
    I don’t want to be rude but Joseph Smith went off by himself into a forest. He too was vexed over what to believe and what to follow. He stuck his face into a hat and the Holy Spirit spoke to him.
    He testified that he never went of into heresy or calvinism either but that the lord showed him true Christianity.

    Another reason I don’t believe anyone who says “the Holy Spirit told me…”

  36. Was there a football game on tonight? I have been watching WWE Raw – a couple of great matches, although Seth Rollins had the help of the Lumberjacks and cheated in his defeat of John Cena. It’s terrible that that is allowed to happen.

  37. E says:

    MLD, I understand your position. But Joseph Smith did go off the rails into heresy. Unlike Smith, im very historically orthodox in my understanding.

  38. How would you know if you don’t read books and compare to other orthodox thinkers?

  39. E says:

    In my 25 years I have lots of discussions with other Christians and theologian types. Ranging from CC, AG, etc.

    But I would say the what ive been taught lines with what John Wesley. But im not Methodist nor have I been to a Methodist church.

    I pulled this off of google because its better than anything i could write in a short period of time.


    Grace is central to our understanding of Christian faith and life.

    Grace can be defined as the love and mercy given to us by God because God wants us to have it, not because of anything we have done to earn it. We read in the Letter to the Ephesians: “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God — not the result of works, so that no one may boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9).

    Our United Methodist heritage is rooted in a deep and profound understanding of God’s grace. This incredible grace flows from God’s great love for us. Did you have to memorize John 3:16 in Sunday school when you were a child? There was a good reason. This one verse summarizes the gospel: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.” The ability to call to mind God’s love and God’s gift of Jesus Christ is a rich resource for theology and faith.” 1

    John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist movement, described God’s grace as threefold:
    •prevenient grace
    •justifying grace
    •sanctifying grace

    Prevenient Grace

    Wesley understood grace as God’s active presence in our lives. This presence is not dependent on human actions or human response. It is a gift — a gift that is always available, but that can be refused.

    God’s grace stirs up within us a desire to know God and empowers us to respond to God’s invitation to be in relationship with God. God’s grace enables us to discern differences between good and evil and makes it possible for us to choose good….

    God takes the initiative in relating to humanity. We do not have to beg and plead for God’s love and grace. God actively seeks us!1

    Justifying Grace

    Paul wrote to the church in Corinth: “In Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them” (2 Corinthians 5:19). And in his letter to the Roman Christians, Paul wrote: “But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

    These verses demonstrate the justifying grace of God. They point to reconciliation, pardon, and restoration. Through the work of God in Christ our sins are forgiven, and our relationship with God is restored. According to John Wesley, founder of the Methodist movement, the image of God — which has been distorted by sin — is renewed within us through Christ’s death.

    Again, this dimension of God’s grace is a gift. God’s grace alone brings us into relationship with God. There are no hoops through which we have to jump in order to please God and to be loved by God. God has acted in Jesus Christ. We need only to respond in faith.1


    This process of salvation involves a change in us that we call conversion. Conversion is a turning around, leaving one orientation for another. It may be sudden and dramatic, or gradual and cumulative. But in any case, it’s a new beginning. Following Jesus’ words to Nicodemus, “You must be born anew” (John 3:7 RSV), we speak of this conversion as rebirth, new life in Christ, or regeneration.

    Following Paul and Luther, John Wesley called this process justification. Justification is what happens when Christians abandon all those vain attempts to justify themselves before God, to be seen as “just” in God’s eyes through religious and moral practices. It’s a time when God’s “justifying grace” is experienced and accepted, a time of pardon and forgiveness, of new peace and joy and love. Indeed, we’re justified by God’s grace through faith.

    Justification is also a time of repentance — turning away from behaviors rooted in sin and toward actions that express God’s love. In this conversion we can expect to receive assurance of our present salvation through the Holy Spirit “bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God” (Romans 8:16).2

    Sanctifying Grace

    Salvation is not a static, one-time event in our lives. It is the ongoing experience of God’s gracious presence transforming us into whom God intends us to be. John Wesley described this dimension of God’s grace as sanctification, or holiness.1

    Through God’s sanctifying grace, we grow and mature in our ability to live as Jesus lived. As we pray, study the Scriptures, fast, worship, and share in fellowship with other Christians, we deepen our knowledge of and love for God. As we respond with compassion to human need and work for justice in our communities, we strengthen our capacity to love neighbor. Our inner thoughts and motives, as well as our outer actions and behavior, are aligned with God’s will and testify to our union with God. 1

    We’re to press on, with God’s help, in the path of sanctification toward perfection. By perfection, Wesley did not mean that we would not make mistakes or have weaknesses. Rather, he understood it to be a continual process of being made perfect in our love of God and each other and of removing our desire to sin.

  40. the Dude says:

    Sorry guys but the Bucks beat the Ducks.Didnt watch the game because I don’t have cable.Went to my Monday night Bible study instead.

  41. Bob says:

    Why is it we confuse God’s “grace” over sin and use the same term to beat others over the head for their lack of civility and manners?

    The whole internet thing, seems to be a way which leads to “lawlessness” and a lack of love.

    Oh well.


    Hate to break it to you but the WWE is scripted reality. John Cena will be back.

  42. Bob, you mean like all the movies people go to and cry during?

    It’s the greatest show on earth. I wanted to take my 2 grandsons last week or 2 weeks ago when they came to LA – but I couldn’t come up with the $130 per ticket.

    I used to take my kids in the mid 80s – it was great, and a lot cheaper.

  43. Bob says:


    $130 bucks a ticket??? Wow, and people complain about giving in church.

    I always wondered who all those people were in the stands when I occasionally stopped on a WWE Friday Smack Down. Now I know!

    I personally prefer the monster trucks and the Top Fuel drags. I go every year to the Drag Nationals in our area and the best seats cost $80.00. The prices haven’t changed much in 20 years. Now the price of food? That is something completely different. For the price of a burger, fries and drink I used to feed my family for a week. Must be end times stuff; bread the price of a day’s wage.

    Smack em down! Rev em up!

  44. Bob Sweat says:

    My dad used to take me to the Olympic Auditorium to watch wrestling in the days of Dick (Woooooo Nelly) Lane!

  45. Bob Sweat – me too – in fact that was me sitting next to you in 1957 🙂

    Hey, we used to go to the roller derby there also – Dick Lane was the Vin Scully of his day.

  46. Bob,
    “$130 bucks a ticket??? Wow, and people complain about giving in church.”

    That wasn’t even the price for the ringside (or 1st section) seating.
    That is church. Hey, if you are not a WWE fan you have zero sanctification. 🙂

  47. Bob Sweat says:

    Yep, 1957 works! Perhaps you remember my grandfather pulling out his pocket knife and heading up to ring while my dad and uncle tackled him. 😯 The L. A. “T” Birds rock!

  48. Bob the S – a look back

    Hey, and i thought that ref needed his belly slit also! 😉

  49. Xenia says:

    E wrote:

    >>>We’re to press on, with God’s help, in the path of sanctification toward perfection. By perfection, Wesley did not mean that we would not make mistakes or have weaknesses. Rather, he understood it to be a continual process of being made perfect in our love of God and each other and of removing our desire to sin.<<<

    This is exactly right.

  50. I know i should stick to just commenting on WWE wrestling, btw Randy “Macho Man” Savage will be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2 weeks, but let me see if I have Wesley down right.

    If I can re categorize my sins to ‘mistakes’, ‘weaknesses’ and / or Whoopsies’ then I am on my way to a non perfection perfection and God is happy with this.

    Hmmmm, perhaps I should see if I can be traded to that tribe.

  51. fyi says:

    tech question: for the last 2 days I have been getting a re-direct notice when I hit the link to a comment and, at times, when I sign in to the site. I am a tech dummy (worse than that) so can anyone explain what needs to be done in very simple terms please?

  52. Michael says:


    We’ve had some hacking issues over the past couple of days…I’ve added more security to the backend and we’ll see if it gets better.

  53. Erunner says:

    I’ve experienced the same but I do like the page I get with cool looking folks standing around! 🙂 So far refreshing is doing the job for me or even opening up another window and getting back on.

  54. fyi says:

    thanks. it is always good not to be alone… 🙂

  55. Steve Wright says:

    I love the Hawaiian shirt on the guy in the middle…the one who feels different and alone…

    Make your own application. 🙂

  56. Bob Sweat says:



  57. Michael,

    Hacking? Security?
    …are you working freelance for Sony?

    Je suis PhxP!

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