Posts Tagged With: faith

My thought for this Sunday (okay, not exactly “mine”)

You can think what you will about Bono, but I admire his honesty and outspokenness. His explanation of the difference between Karma and Grace is very clear (and I happen to totally agree with him).

Bono_on_Bono_Cover

Bono on the difference between Grace and Karma

“It’s a mind-blowing concept that the God who created the Universe might be looking for company, a real relationship with people, but the thing that keeps me on my knees is the difference between Grace and Karma…

You see, at the centre of all religions is the idea of Karma. You know, what you put out comes back to you; an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, or in physics – in physical laws – every action is met by an equal or opposite one.  Its clear to me that Karma is at the very heart of the universe.  I’m absolutely sure of it.

And yet, along comes this idea called Grace to upend all that “As you reap, so will you sow” stuff.  Grace defies reason and logic. Love interrupts, if you like, the consequences of your actions, which in my case is very good news indeed, because I’ve done a lot of stupid stuff.

That’s between me and God. But I’d be in big trouble if Karma was going to finally be my judge. I’d be in deep shit. It doesn’t excuse my mistakes, but I’m holding out for Grace. I’m holding out that Jesus took my sins onto the Cross because I know who I am, and I hope I don’t have to depend on my own religiosity.

The point of the death of Christ is that Christ took on the sins of the world so that what we put out did not come back to us, and that our sinful nature does not reap the obvious death. That’s the point. It should keep us humbled….its not our own good works that get through the gates of heaven…

If only we could be a bit more like Him, the world would be transformed.  All I do is get up on the Cross of the Ego; the bad hangover, the bad review. When I look at the Cross of Christ, what I see up there is all my shit and everybody else’s. So I ask myself a question a lot of people have asked: Who is this man?  And was He who He said He was, or was he just a religious nut?  And there it is, and that’s the question.  And no one can talk you into it or out of it.”

All text taken from Chapter 11 of Bono on Bono: conversations with Michka Assayas, 2005 (Hodder).

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Categories: Articles, Bible, Books, Christian, Faith, Religion | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments

Chasing the Wind (by Randy Alcorn)

The book of Ecclesiastes is the most powerful exposé of materialism ever written. Solomon recounts his attempts to find meaning in pleasure, laughter, alcohol, folly, building projects, and the pursuit of personal interests, as well as in amassing slaves, gold and silver, singers, and a huge harem to fulfill his sexual desires (Ecclesiastes 2:1-11). The more Solomon had, the more he was tempted to indulge. His indulgence led to sin, and his sin brought misery.

Solomon makes a series of insightful statements in Ecclesiastes 5:10–15. I’ll follow each with my paraphrase:

  • “Whoever loves money never has money enough” (v. 10). The more you have, the more you want.
  • “Whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income” (v. 10). The more you have, the less you’re satisfied.
  • “As goods increase, so do those who consume them” (v. 11). The more you have, the more people (including the government) will come after it.
  • “And what benefit are they to the owner except to feast his eyes on them?” (v. 11). The more you have, the more you realize it does you no good.
  • “The sleep of a laborer is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but the abundance of a rich man permits him no sleep” (v. 12). The more you have, the more you have to worry about.
  • “I have seen a grievous evil under the sun: wealth hoarded to the harm of its owner” (v. 13). The more you have, the more you can hurt yourself by holding on to it.
  • “Or wealth lost through some misfortune” (v.14). The more you have, the more you have to lose.
  • “Naked a man comes from his mother’s womb, and as he comes, so he departs. He takes nothing from his labor that he can carry in his hand” (v. 15). The more you have, the more you’ll leave behind.

As the wealthiest man on earth, Solomon learned that affluence didn’t satisfy. All it did was give him greater opportunity to chase more mirages. People tend to run out of money before mirages, so they cling to the myth that things they can’t afford will satisfy them. Solomon’s money never ran out. He tried everything, saying, “I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure” (Ecclesiastes 2:10).

Solomon’s conclusion? “When I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun” (v. 11).

Consider this statement, “Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income” (Ecclesiastes 5:10). The repeated word never is emphatic—there are no exceptions. There’s an unspoken corollary to this statement: To become satisfied, you must change your attitude toward wealth.

Money itself is never the answer. What we need is a radically different perspective on money and a genuine opportunity to do something with it that will make our lives meaningful instead of meaningless.

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by: Randy Alcorn (sept 28, 2012)
http://www.epm.org/blog/2012/Sep/28/chasing-wind
Categories: Articles, Bible, Faith, Money, Religion | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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