Eli was a priest but he had lost his center. His two sons Hophni and Phineas were also priests; but they were self-centered and evil. Their focus was themselves. God sent a prophet to warn them; they didn’t listen. It was during this time that the young boy Samuel heard God call him for the first time. God gave Samuel this message:
“At that time I will carry out against Eli everything I spoke against his family–from beginning to end. For I told him that I would judge his family forever because of the sin he knew about; his sons made themselves contemptible, and he failed to restrain them.”
The end result was a disaster; Eli’s sons died on the same day and the ark of God was lost to the enemy. When Eli heard the news, he also died. No member of Eli’s family ever became a priest again.
Being off-center can have dreadful results. (more…)
Mark 4:17 But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.
Recently, some close friends were attacked in their own apartment. They were young men, college students who had dared to live outside themselves, outside their comfort zone. Over the course of a couple of years, they had established relationships with younger guys in their apartments and had begun to help them with school work. Every Tuesday and Thursday had become tutoring days. Schoolwork, reading and math, came first; then they would play games with X-box or computers.
Their involvement in the apartment complex was having an effect. One high school student had accepted Christ and become part of a local church. Another eleven-year-old student had heard God speak to him about his attitude and changed his action because of it.
Then the attack came. (more…)
I recently had the opportunity to meet with a group of teachers from Central America. We were discussing their high school students and tried to answer this question: Are teenagers children or adults? Lively discussion back and forth produced no real conclusion. Several felt strongly on each side of the issue.
Then we changed the question: If we asked the teens the same thing—Are you adults or children—what would they answer. Amazingly, we found solidarity in that everyone thought the teens would say that they are adults. This is at the core of many of our difficulties with our teens. We treat them like kids but we expect them to act like adults. They feel like adults but they often still act like kids.
So how do we begin to bring the two worlds together? (more…)