Brokenness to Healing, Religious Freedom & Simplify
Loving others is often a way to learn about God’s love for us. God has used adoption in the lives of two influential families in the SBC to teach about His love for them and how to love others. Voters in Nevada and Arkansas took steps deemed contrary to and problematic for religious freedom in Nov. 8 midterm elections, while legalized marijuana passed in two of the five states that considered it. And, in a First Person on Baptist Press, David Jeremiah writes, “The Gospels are full of children, and the Bible teaches us to emulate the wonder, faith, fascination and simplicity of a childlike heart…”
Loving others is often a way to learn about God’s love for us. God has used adoption in the lives of two influential families in the SBC to teach about His love for them and how to love others.
Paul and Michelle Chitwood adopted in 2018 and Kevin and Lynette Ezell adopted in the early 2000s.
Paul Chitwood is the president of the International Mission Board and Kevin Ezell is the president of the North American Mission Board.
We talked to both couples about the experience of adoption and how God has taught them through the process.
Sunday is Orphan and Widow Sunday across the Southern Baptist Convention.
Voters in Nevada and Arkansas took steps deemed contrary to and problematic for religious freedom in Nov. 8 midterm elections, while legalized marijuana passed in two of the five states that considered it.
Nevada voters added gender identity and sexual orientation to freedoms protected in the state constitution with 57.11 percent of voters approving the Equality of Rights Amendment, Nevada Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske reported.
Arkansans appeared to have narrowly defeated a constitutional amendment that would have restricted the government from burdening religious freedom “even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability,” and limiting such actions to “the least restrictive means.” With 97.3 percent of the vote counted, Issue Number 3 or the Arkansas Religious Freedom Amendment was failing with 50.44 percent of voters opposing it, Arkansas Secretary of State John Thurston reported.
Among states that sought to legalize marijuana use, Maryland and Missouri approved the measure, while it failed in Arkansas, North Dakota and South Dakota.
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In a First Person on Baptist Press, David Jeremiah writes, “The Gospels are full of children, and the Bible teaches us to emulate the wonder, faith, fascination and simplicity of a childlike heart. We’re not to be childish in our thinking, for the Bible enjoins maturity and wisdom; but we’re to be childlike in our spirits. That means knowing how to slow down, see the world around us, be present with a sense of wonder, and be awestruck with the greatness of our Heavenly Father—and the smallness of some of His blessings.”
He goes on to say, “This means we must recover the simplicity of worship. I’m not talking about the order or rituals of the worship service you attend, but about the sense of wonder that should grip our hearts when we think of God. When people lose faith in a Creator, the creation itself simply becomes a grid to study before we die. But from the beginning, God intended for us to look into the starry skies and contemplate His greatness. He intended for us to look at the flowers of the field and contemplate His beauty. He intended for us to look at the birds of the air and contemplate His care. And He intended for us to look into His Word and contemplate His grace. Our secular world has lost the sense of wonder.”
Read the full piece and sign up for our daily emails at Baptist Press.com.
Church Responds to Online Threat, Worship Pastor Wins on ‘Wheel of Fortune’ & Praising God in Prayer
Police in Haymarket, Virginia responded in textbook fashion to neutralize a threat at an area church on Sunday. A Kentucky pastor recently used an appearance on the popular game show Wheel of Fortune to do more than spin the wheel and win some cash. And, Wesley Duewel, the 20th century missionary and prayer leader, once observed, “Praise gives you the spirit of triumph and overcoming. Praise fires you with holy zeal.
The Maryland Supreme Court has ruled 4-3 that a Catholic employer was lawful in denying health benefits to the spouse of a gay married employee because such unions violate church doctrine. This college football season is unlike any other in David Pollack’s life. For as long as he can remember, the sport dominated his Saturdays in ways most people haven’t experienced. And, from 2012-2017, the reality TV series “Duck Dynasty” told many stories of the Robertson family and their duck-call and decoy business. “The Blind,” coming to theaters Sept. 28, tells the story of Phil Robertson’s life before he became a Christian.
Hard times often are described as “going through a valley.” But Bruce Watson, pastor of First Baptist Jeanerette, La., describes life’s valleys as the place where the soil is the richest. Rudy Kebreau and Randal Lyle are bound by far more than their mutual faith and pastoral calling these days. And, maybe your church has a prayer list. But have you ever considered have a personal prayer list? In a piece in the Baptist Press Toolbox, Kie Bowman says it may help you remain faithful in prayer.