What is it?
So, for a class assignment we were asked to write our own “working definition” of the Church. Up until it was time to do this assignment I thought to myself, “this will be easy!” But, of course this wasn’t easy. Perhaps the whole experience of church is likened to a 2 year old kid who is experiencing the taste of ice-cream for the very first time. I saw it and...
Whoever has ears to hear...
One of Jesus’ popular expressions throughout the Gospels was, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear!” Jesus’ parables were spoken to those who possess a disposition and readiness to discern His teaching. Jeannette Bakke says, “Our ability to discern is influenced by our willingness to observe” (Bakke, 212). As I consider my own experience with discerning what may or may not be of God, I have...
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has looked favorably on his people and redeemed them. He has raised up a mighty savior for us in the house of his servant David, as he spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, that we would be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us. Thus he has shown mercy promised to our ancestors, and has remembered his holy...
Salt and Light
“You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let...
Picking up the trash
During lunchtime when the weather permits I enjoy taking a walk in the neighborhood just behind the office where I work. Today as started out on my stroll I came upon a cup that was blowing around as if it were bouncing along the sidewalk just ahead of me. The cup eventually came to a stop in a resident’s yard shortly ahead. The cup was merely trash. Just plain old trash. I picked up the...
As I enjoy this cup of coffee, here are some...
Doing history is like manually grinding the perfect cup of coffee. It is a timely process that requires patience to pulverize each bean in order for the hot water to extract just the right amount of coffee. If you fail to invest enough time to grind the beans long enough, you will end up with a shallow extraction that will result in no more than a wasted bean and a cup of hot water to be tossed...
Eating God's Word
“Christian meditation, very simply, is the ability to hear God’s voice and obey His word. It is that simple. I wish I could make it more complicated for those who like things difficult.” (Celebration of Discipline, Foster) Richard Foster, does a great job explaining what Christian, biblical meditation is. I often find the word “meditation,” in the biblical sense, to be a taboo of sorts. ...
Celebrating my journey with God...
As I was driving home from work tonight I was wrestling with a decision of whether or not I should work out. Throughout the whole 15 minute drive from the office until I got home I had decided TO work out and NOT to work out probably more than 6 times! In other words, my mind was set on being indecisive. As I stepped out of the car I was convinced that this wasn’t the night to go out on a jog,...
When Jesus saw their faith…
I was reading the Gospel of Mark last week and found myself drawn to the passage in chapter 2 where Jesus heals the paralytic. My eyes were fixed on verse 5, “When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, ‘Son, your sins are forgiven.’” I’ve read this passage many times and have always taken note of the statement, “Son, your sins are forgiven,” Those are very beautiful...
Further Up/Further In: We're all Religious →
scottxstephens: I always here the phrase, “Oh I’m not very religious, but I’m very spiritual.” It always catches me off guard whenever I hear it. As a person who finds himself entrenched in religious life every single day, it is hard to imagine a life without religion. But nonetheless, I hear this statement or…
Therefore prepare your minds for action; discipline yourselves; set all your hope on the grace that Jesus Christ will bring you when he is revealed. Like obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires that you formerly had in ignorance. Instead, as he who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in all your conduct; for it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” - 1...
It’s been way too long since my last post. I started this blog last year so that I could bring the rambling formational thoughts from my journal to a blog… So long for that resolution. Until now. As I sat in lectio this morning with my Bible open to Psalm 24, my eyes were fixed on verses 4 and 5… “Make me to know your ways, O LORD; teach me your paths. Lead me in your...
The Rambling Reflections of Mike Lueken →
Augusta Minch Alexander 1928-2011
Augusta (Minch) Alexander, 83, passed away peacefully Nov. 25, 2011, in Edgewood at the St. Elizabeth Medical Center in the presence of her friends and family. She was born in Owen County, the daughter of the late John and Bessie Gulley. She was also preceded in death by her first husband, William Minch; brother, John Gulley; and son-in-law, Philip Poynter. She is survived by her husband,...
"Thank You For Each Moment."
Lord, thank you for each moment, for the blue-sky moment, the softening earth, the refreshing wind, the yellow bush, for my full heart and the joy rising in me. Soften me to receive whatever comes as a gift and to praise you in it. Lord, thank you for each moment for the twilight moment, the pause, the good tired, for the quiet reflection, the slowing down, the mysterious sunset, for the wisdom...
We can get so busy doing urgent things and so preoccupied with what comes next that we don’t experience now. Afraid of being late, we rush from the past to the future. The present moment becomes a crack between what we did and what we have to do. It is virtually lost to us. We don’t get to our futures any faster if we hurry. And we certainly don’t become better people in...
When I googled the word “potluck”, this is one of the definitions that returned: “a meal where those attending bring a dish to share. The variety provides a wonderful setting to share food and conversation. Place setting provided for visitors and those who forget to bring it. Visitors are not expected to bring food!” The below picture is a shot of the food sitting on the...
“Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.” - C. S. Lewis
On Wednesday morning, my time in Lectio Divina was Psalm 16. I’ve reflected on this psalm many, many times as it is one of my favorites. I go back to verses 7 - 10 as my most contemplated. This morning was different, I felt that God led me to verse 11, “You show me the path of life. In Your presence there is fullness of joy; in Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” I...
The Big Kahuna
If you haven’t seen the move, The Big Kahuna, then I highly recommend watching it. The movie was an assignment for a class discussion, and since this blog is about Colloquy, I find it very appropriate to post. One of the questions for our class discussion is to identify a character that you connect with. Below is my response… The person who I identify with the most is Bob. When I...
Warby Parker →
My next pair of frames. So many choices…
Life With God
Lately I’ve been reading the book Life with God - Reading the Bible for Spiritual Transformation, by Richard Foster and I came to this paragraph tonight… “Life with God is an ongoing, ever-changing, relational adventure. It is not a matter of being driven through life, stopping every now and then to get out of the car and see the surroundings. God invites us to climb into the...
“Today we need to hear again that God alone is worthy of our worship and obedience. The idolatry of affluence is rampant. Our greed for more dictates so many of our decisions. Notice how the fourth commandment of the Sabbath rest strikes at the heart of this everlasting itch to get ahead. We find it so very hard to rest when, by working, we can get the jump on everyone else. There is...
Anonymous asked: Rest should include, but not exclusively, the practices of reflection and contemplation. Effective rest is not simply the physical act of recharging your batteries, but a lifelong discipline designed to show you where you have been and where you want to go. It takes effort.
Anonymous asked: I love this new Colloquy blog. Matt, are you getting a Master's degree in Spiritual Formation?
1How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! 2My soul longs, indeed it faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. 3Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God. 4Happy are those who live in your house, ever singing your praise. Selah ...
…It has always been a very interesting concept to me. In fact, rest has always been very arduous. I never seem to actually do it. I took today off from work in order to rest. I left work yesterday telling everyone in our office that, “I’m taking the day off to get some rest”. When I got home I found myself so excited to have a day off that I never once thought about...
Stewarding the English language.
Recently, I’ve been reading a book by Marilyn Chandler McEntyre called Caring for Words in a Culture of Lies. Usually, it takes me about four chapters or more to really “get into” a book. However, eight pages in and I was blown away by some interesting statistics McEntyre shares … Today the English language has over a million words. The average educated person knows...
Colloquy. What is it?
Colloquy is the Latin word for conversation. Colloquy means dialogue. Or a conversational exchange. This blog is all about dialogue and a conversational exchange. I would like to invite you to be a part of this conversation.