If you take baby Jesus out of the day 24 box, what do you do about the wise men? They don’t show up until Jesus was a toddler. Do you just keep the calendar out all year? I try to set my Advent Calendar up as follows.
Stars first since they were created long before people
Shepards and Animals since they own the joint
The innkeeper, even though there was no Hilton Garden Inn’s back then.
Joseph, since he was supposed to find a place
Mary, since she has the baby
Jesus, since he is the whole purpose of the Advent
Wise men, since it took several months or maybe years to get there.
Well, technically it went right as it was intended, but I’m sure the owner wasn’t too happy about losing all those pigs. But you know, for the kingdom, and Jesus owns everything.
Someone I know posted a few random clickbait titles as to spur interest in reading the bible. I think it’s a great idea. It’s very Babylon Bee -esque. Anyway, here’s the bible verse to read for that.
They came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gerasenes. And when Jesus had stepped out of the boat, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. He lived among the tombs. And no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain, for he had often been bound with shackles and chains, but he wrenched the chains apart, and he broke the shackles in pieces. No one had the strength to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and on the mountains he was always crying out and cutting himself with stones. And when he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and fell down before him. And crying out with a loud voice, he said, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, do not torment me.” For he was saying to him, “Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!” And Jesus asked him, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” And he begged him earnestly not to send them out of the country. Now a great herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside, and they begged him, saying, “Send us to the pigs; let us enter them.” So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the pigs; and the herd, numbering about two thousand, rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the sea.
The herdsmen fled and told it in the city and in the country. And people came to see what it was that had happened. And they came to Jesus and saw the demon-possessed man, the one who had had the legion, sitting there, clothed and in his right mind, and they were afraid. And those who had seen it described to them what had happened to the demon-possessed man and to the pigs. And they began to beg Jesus to depart from their region. As he was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with demons begged him that he might be with him. And he did not permit him but said to him, “Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled. — Mk 5:1-20
Do you know someone who is always on the opposite side of your opinion? I’m not talking about your spouse, it’s supposed to be that way. But someone who always starts out their response with “Well, actually…”
Star Wars vs Star Trek, DC vs Marvel, Republican vs Democrat vs some weird 3rd party, Christian vs Pagan (Don’t even get me started on the Religious subcultures, that’s an issue that loses more friendships than any)
Some people just like to hear your opinion first so they can play “devil’s advocate” and just to get on your nerves. It’s tough to be friends with people like this. How do you deal with it? Well, you can always ask a bunch of follow up questions if they are the type of person that makes statements. The best way is just to keep quiet and not share your opinions. Someone can’t shoot you down if you don’t give them any ammo. Read twitter posts, Facebook status and just grin and move on. But you can’t can you? So if you must be right all the time, unleash your best with no mercy and enjoy no friendships.
Who are you to say when someone is supposed to die? Do you magically know everyone’s expiration date? People aren’t cartons of milk.
They are in a better place
I know we aren’t supposed to judge, but isn’t this the worse kind of judgement? From a Xian perspective this is the kind of judgement Jesus told us not to make, this one is delegated to him. It’s between Jesus and the departed.
They are no longer in pain
Really? How do you know what death is like, it might be the worst pain you’ve ever felt. You have no gauge because you’ve never died.
They are no longer suffering
Suffering is relative so how do you know they were suffering before? Maybe they were having a good time from their point of view.
Asking for stuff
I don’t know what the grace period is for asking to take the departed’s belongings, but when they are lowering the coffin into the grave is probably not the best time to ask if you can have the flat screen from their living room.
Depending on your worldview some of these things could be true. Again you are making a judgement that you are not qualified to make.
I can understand if you are saving a seat for your spouse, or visiting family members. Other than that, are we still in elementary school? It’s like saying, I really don’t want to get to know anyone new. I have my friends and I want to keep it that way. What’s worse is when someone else asks the same question as you are walking away and they say, “No, go head and sit down”. Ouch! I really don’t know what else to say, except, I’ll save you a seat in heaven, if I see you there.
Keep in mind there are those type of people at every church, but don’t let that distract you from the content of the preaching, style of worship, how others are dressed and how many sermons in a row are on tithing.