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Terry Storch Dispatch w.35.2020
"If you define success solely in terms of gaining wealth, achievement, or influence, what you often lose is freedom. One of the greatest accomplishments in life is earning the autonomy to choose how you spend your time. No currency is more valuable—or more scarce—than freedom." - Adam Grant
I’m currently reading Ravi Zacharias’ book Seeing Jesus from the East, along with a lot of other books and podcasts. My current readings and input are very intentional with a focus on deconstruction. Oftentimes, I’m trying to learn and grow in specific areas, but right now I’m actually focused on trying to learn and grow and I “unlearn” and “deconstruct” a lot of my thinking and mindsets. Rohr is currently walking through this in his daily emails—Order, Disorder, Reorder. You can dive in here.
In Seeing Jesus from the East, Zacharias describes a time when he and one of his colleagues visited with a notorious Islamic terrorist who kills Christians.
There is a fundamental difference between you and us (Islamic terrorist and a Christ-follower.) When you see a person, you see that person as identical with his belief. So, if you don’t agree with that belief, your answer is to kill that person. When we see a person, we don’t see them as identical with their belief. We might not agree with the belief, but we still love the person. We will discuss the content of their belief, but we don’t hate the person. We can not kill a person because of their belief. We believe that every human being is created in the image of God, and we can not violate that.
We have seen the death and destruction of radical terrorism in our world. In America, we visualize 9/11 and the Twin Towers crashing down that killed so many in 2001. Because I live in Oklahoma City, the 1995 Murrah Building bombing comes to mind and the devastation that came with it. On a global scale, terrorism runs rampant, and its results are mind-blowing and sad.
But honestly, when I listened and read this section of the book and how he described the difference between the Christ-followers and the Islamic terrorist, I honestly struggled to see much difference. No, the Christians I’m thinking about are not literally killing someone for their beliefs, but the thoughts, actions, and words that are currently being used by Christians are very similar to those of terrorists. This is what lead me to think about Christian Terrorism.
In today's American society, it seems that there’s just as much division among Christians as there is non-Christians. We’re divided politically, theologically, and in our stance on Covid-19. It seems as if being able to separate a person from their beliefs has become the exception rather than the rule. Zacharias described Christians as being able to separate a person and their belief and not seeing them as the same. Is this really the case? Are you able to do this, and are you doing this? I’m challenging every part of myself to be able to do this and truly live as Jesus did.
“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” - John 13:34-35
Jesus brought a new command, a new way of life, and He gave it to us. Love one another. When we, as Christ-followers, see a person as identical with their beliefs, we become Christian Terrorists. This act of terrorism is destructive, divisive, and detracts from the loving character of God. As a Christ-follower, we believe that every human being is created in the image of God. This belief is central and essential to our faith.
So, no matter if you support Trump or Biden, consider yourself a conservative or liberal, or won’t wear a mask or choose to wear one and “social distance,” may we first and foremost be Christ followers who are Christ’s disciples. It doesn’t matter if you’re a Catholic, Methodist, Anglican, or Evangelical. What matters is that we love one another.
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Growth is optional, but if you choose it, pain is not. The author of this post also said this: “Shit happens. Life is hard. Pain is inevitable. Growth is optional. It’s your choice.” Direct, but true. Learning, unlearning, constructing, and deconstructing are all a part of the growth process of life. Here are two articles that approach this topic from different angles. Read one. Read two.
There is a lot of talk and fuss going on about the USPS—United States Postal Service. I appreciated this article and perspective that brought some light on how small businesses are being critically impacted by some of these policies and shortfalls. Here is an article from Om. Read now.
I haven't shared many details about my Tesla Model Y purchase. I need to get to that and will in the near future. However, a friend, who knows my love for Tesla and the progression of autonomous vehicles, sent me this article about Dedicated Road Lanes from Detroit to Ann Arbor for Autonomous Vehicles. I think we’ll be seeing more and more cities moving in this direction. I love that Detroit, Michigan, was the first to head this way! Read more.
I have had a lot of people asking me about my journey with unlearning, deconstruction, and my personal growth right now. Here are just a few of the things I’m reading, have read, and am listening too. This list is not a blind recommendation—it’s just a list of things that have been a part of my journey during the last few months.
Book: Falling Upward, Richard Rohr
Book: Seeing Jesus From the East, Ravi Zacharias
Book: Her Gates Will Never Be Shut, Bradley Jerzak
Book: Irresistible, Andy Stanley
Podcast: The BEMA Discipleship Podcast, Marty Soloman
Podcast: Rethinking God with Tacos, Jason Clark and Thomas Floyd
Podcast: Ask NT Wright Anything
Video: The Bible Project, Tim and Jon
Video: The Fall of Wisdom, Dr. Chris Green
Hebrews 1 - Jesus
Hebrews 2:1-4 - Drifting Away
Hebrews 2: 5-18 - Set Free
Hebrews 3:1-6 -We Are God’s House
Hebrews 3:7-19 - Today is the Day
Hebrews 4:1-13 - Rest is Active
Hebrews 4:14-16 - Jesus, Great and High Priest
Hebrews 5 - Jesus Wasn’t Perfect
Hebrews 6 - Spiritual Dullness is Deadly
Hebrews 7 - Jesus Changed Everything
Hebrews 8 - New
Hebrews 9 - Gratitude
Hebrews 10:19-39 - Confidence in Christ
Hebrews 11 - By Faith
Hebrews 12:1-3 - Our Race
Hebrews 12:4-13 - God is Not Angry
Hebrews 12:18-29 - Fear or Joy
Hebrews 13 - United with Jesus