Youth Group Lock-Ins: Proof of Adults’ Naivety (or Their Bad Memory)


lock in

by John Ellis

Several months ago, I watched an Australian news program about people who can remember every moment of their life. Apparently, scientists who study this kind of thing have studied it and concluded that some people do have the ability to remember almost every moment of their life. Most of those who were featured in the segment viewed their memory as a curse. Actress Marilu Henner (Taxi, Noises Off), on the other hand, finds her extraordinary memory a blessing. For me, as someone with a really good memory, I found the segment and its subjects fascinating. I can’t remember every moment or day of my life, but I remember a lot. Far more than most people, I’m frequently told.

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The First Gulf War, the Rapture, and Lack of Faith

the rapture

by John Ellis

Operation Desert Shield and I share a birthday. On August 2, 1990 I celebrated my 15th birthday. That same day, Saddam Hussein sent the Iraqi Army into Kuwait. The invasion and occupation of an American ally prompted President Bush (I) and his military advisors to commence operations that would result in Operation Desert Storm. Living in a military town (Pensacola, FL) meant that the events over the next few months loomed large over many of the people around me, understandably so. However, the ways in which many of the adults reacted to Desert Shield and Storm were used by Satan-Serpent to solidify my unbelief in God.

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Parents as a Metaphor for God the Father and Baseball Injuries


youth baseball

by John Ellis

Today was my eight-year-old son’s first official baseball game of the fall season. As the youngest, smallest, and least experienced kid on his team, he was excited yet nervous. I was excited and nervous for him.  Expecting to play very little, he was happy to see the lineup, finding out that he was going to play three of the five innings. During the second inning, his first, the game was marred by an injury.

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Our First Love: The American Dream

god and country

by John Ellis

Below is the introduction to a short book titled Our First Love that I’m working on. Lord willing, I will be self-publishing the book in a few weeks. If you are curious as to why I will be self-publishing it, you can read about that by clicking here – a post I published earlier today providing an update on A Godless Fundamentalist. At this time, I’m publishing the introduction with the goal of prompting interest in the book prior to its publication (hopefully) and, combined with the post linked to above, giving those who have been asking some insight into what I’ve been working on.

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Update on ‘A Godless Fundamentalist’

puplishing

by John Ellis

Several years ago, a student in one of the adult acting classes I was teaching managed to finagle his way into a meeting with one of the top talent agents in the southeast. This agent provided talent for most of the major films and shows being filmed throughout the Carolinas and Georgia. The student’s acting ability and resume did not warrant that meeting, but he was persistent, if nothing else, and somehow figured out a way to get inside this lady’s office.

After I asked him how it went, he sullenly responded, “Like it always does. Hollywood doesn’t care about talent. They just want to put you in a box and misuse you.”

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Love Your Enemies, Even on Social Media

fire
“And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness.” James 3:6

by John Ellis

During a recent chapel service, Union Seminary called those in attendance to gather around a group of plants and, in their words, “we held our grief, joy, regret, hope, guilt and sorrow in prayer; offering them to the beings who sustain us but whose gift we too often fail to honor.”

Predictably, the responses were swift, many, and mocking. Tweets, Facebook posts, blog posts, and a host of other online vehicles took pot shots at the seminary’s actions. I took the opportunity to join the piling on, too. While reading Luke 6 this morning, specifically verses 27-31, though, my conscience was pricked. After pausing to prayerfully reflect, I determined that my words did not comport with Jesus’ command to love our enemies.

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What the Bible Teaches About Free Will

free will

by John Ellis

For several years now, I’ve contemplated writing an article about the problem of free will. Up until now, I’ve resisted because it is a complex topic that requires much nuance and the ability to communicate dense concepts well; I wasn’t sure if I was up to the task. I’m still not sure, but I wrote the article anyway. Thankfully, Servants of Grace published that article (linked to below).

For those interested in the problem of free will, please click over and read it. While there, poke around Servants of Grace. The editor, Dave Jenkins, does an excellent job of publishing God-honoring and edifying articles.

Soli Deo Gloria

Discovering the Real Meaning of Free Will and Divine Freedom