Justice, Mercy, Humility and Ferguson

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Dustin Nickerson is a former children’s pastor who is bursting on to the standup comedy scene. He is a great friend, deep thinker and keen observer of life. For more about Dustin check out his site http://www.dustinnickerson.com/

Ferguson reminds me (maybe us, are we officially an us yet?) of our great desires for both peace and justice. We want this for ourselves and in our best moments, we want it for others even more so.

But we are broken people living amongst brokenness. We see this now as tragedy leads to more tragedy. We see this now as we rush to make our conclusions on the events that happened and how exactly we think others should respond.

People riot, some out of desperation and some for selfish gain. People protest, some out of a desire to bring others down, and some out of the righteous desire to pursue justice.

Simultaneously, some people will dismiss these events, blaming the media for an over inflation of tragic narrative. Some will look to the protesters and rioters and call them fools, disregarding that perhaps their actions are the best way they know how to pursue justice in a trying time. Some people will make these events about something they are not, meanwhile, others will oversimplify.

GOOD-FAST-CHEAP

Someone told me this years ago. It is so true. Such a great way to help in terms of project development and budgets. You can have two of the three but never all three. Good fast cheap doesn’t exist. Not practically, spiritually or theologically. This wee diagram has served me well hopefully it will help you as well.

The Spiritual Discipline of Gratitude  

There are many disciplines in the Christian life. When you start to quantify them you usually get into trouble. Of all the disciplines that can be practiced and demonstrated in the Christian life I believe Gratitude is the singe most important discipline. Gratitude is the byproduct of something we can’t produce ourselves. Gratitude is something we feel when we have been given what we don’t deserve. Gratitude happens when we experience grace and it happens with regularity when we understand grace. Gratitude strikes at the heart of the gospel. If you have ever been to a sporting even in the past 40 years you would have seen the large happy fan of any given team holding up a sign that says John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that he Gave….” Gratitude is us understanding what we have been given and receiving it with joy.

Will you go to hell for smoking marijuana?

We like to put things in boxes. We like tidy answers. Will you go to hell for smoking weed? No. Should you smoke weed? No. Many parents are going to have to start figuring out what they believe about marijuana. Most states that have legalized it have set the legal age at 21 which is wise.

Here is why I think legalizing marijuana is a bad idea.

  1. Wider use and acceptance. The legal age is 21 but so is alcohol and go to any High School party, college campus alcohol is everywhere. Is weed in these places now? Yes. But legalization will make it far worse believe me.
  2. People typically smoke it to get high to alter conscience
  3. I believe that the “drunk with alcohol” scriptures apply to “getting high on drugs”

Are we preparing our teens for legal weed?

I came across this info graphic on the website information is beautiful. It depicts what the most crops are the most lucrative. This info-graphic tells everyone state legislator they are missing out on massive tax revenue. We have successfully taxed tobacco into the dark ages. States will legalize weed and do the same to it.

So the question is not if your state will legalize it but when. Here is my question. As a parent what are you going to tell your kids? As a youth pastor what are you going to tell your kids and how are you equipping your parents with practical and spiritual implications of this new legalization of a “formally banned” substance.