World WReligion Wednesday: Mormon Church Excommunicates ‘Ordain Women’ Founder – NYTimes.com

One of my most cherished Bible verses is Galatians 3:26-29:

 

“So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.

There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

Furthermore, I absolutely support the ordination of women as priests, pastors, and so on. Thus, I think the current re-think occurring within the Mormon Church is something to pay attention to. After you read the article, you are cordially invited to share your thoughts in the comment section. However, please refrain from dishonorable criticism. Healthy assessment is great, but condescension or mean-spirited vitriolic is not. Thanks! Let’s think well together!

 

World WReligion Wednesday: The Barnian Buddhas

 

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Having recently watched the film “Monuments Men” and, as a response, pondered more extensively what it means to honor a people by preserving their cultural heritage, I think it’s a good time to mention the Barnian Buddhas in Afghanistan. Prior to their destruction, one of them was the largest such carving. Now, there is the question of whether to rebuild or not. What do you think?

 

 

World WReligion Wednesday: Misconceptions about Hinduism

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“Are Hindus polytheistic or monotheistic?” 

This is a question I am often asked, particularly by my students. Typically, Hinduism is popularly perceived as being polytheistic (that is, worshipping more than one god). However, I think that is somewhat inaccurate. In fact, Hindus worship various expressions of the same god. Granted, many Hindus may not perceive this, but I think theologically it is accurate. There is almost always variance between core theology and the way people live out their theology. Some Hindus may align themselves as worshippers of Lord Krishna to such a measure they are not thinking of Brahma, the ultimate creator. This is where the disconnect is. At the top of Hinduism is the Trimurti, a trinity of sorts, consisting of Brahma (creator), Shiva (destroyer), and Vishnu (preserver). Thus, it comes down to one god. 

For more understanding of Hinduism, check out this helpful CNN article:

 

 

 

World WReligion Wednesday: Jews: religious group, people, or race?

My students in both Introduction to the Bible and Christianity and World Religions often feel confused about what makes someone Jewish. They understand there is an ethnic identity, but they also see there is a religious component. Not all people who identify themselves as “Jewish” practice Judaism. This is much of where the confusion comes from.

A great article on this can be found HERE.

Destiny means DRIVING THROUGH WALLS

Today I read the last paragraph of my book again. It re-inspired me. Let’s apprehend our dreams with courage, shall we? YOUR dreams are important. I release to you the power, clarity, and vision needed to move forward TODAY. May today be the best day of your life thus far! You are loved!

Destiny is not a merely a rambling road thrown like ribbon over a hillside to some distant location; it is fury and passion and grace and power. It is each and every person fully fulfilling their strengths, their dreams, and their unique place in the global glory flood of love. It is knowing who you are and what makes you come alive. It is doing what makes you come alive in such a Jesus-confetti way that everything around you comes alive in response. It is not being led by confines and well-paved roads; it is driving in the direction of your dreams, no matter how many times the word “impossible” shows up. Being you, truly you, will inevitably lead to driving through walls. Beckon your heart to life today; then floor it straight through those walls. It’s going to feel really good, but more than that, it’s going to be really good. Destiny is apprehended through courage. Drive through the walls.

– Dawn Bulchandani, Driving Through Walls, 272

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Faith often wears the clothes of perseverance.

A while ago I wrote the following blog post. I re-read it today. I meditated on it to encourage myself. May it encourage you as well. Whatever you do, don’t give up on the journey to your destiny. It matters to God and it matters to the world.

http://upsidedownbethlehem.wordpress.com/2010/07/18/happy-perseverance-seven-times-elijah-said-go-back/

“Faith” & “40” by Jason Upton

I was driving home from a friend’s tonight and my ipod shuffled to a song which took me back – to the summer after I graduated from university (2001). I would play the song on repeat, windows open, arm outstretched, a veritable mobile worship unit of hope and passion. The song is “Faith” by Jason Upton.

The next song in the shuffle tonight was “40” by Jason Upton. It was another song I used as a fishing rod, casting the line from 2001 far into the future – into the nation of Iraq. It was in 2001 I had a dream of myself and some friends in one of Saddam Hussein’s former palaces in Iraq. We were leading a Christian meeting. Saddam’s regime had fallen and he was dead. I knew it was a prophetic picture to be fulfilled. Now, ten years later (to the month) I am preparing to reel in the fish I threw my faith-hook into a decade ago. I am getting ready to go to Iraq.

He is faithful.

To lay faith on faith on faith, here is Jason’s song about Martin Luther King Jr, “Never Alone Martin.” I have had many moments when I felt Jesus grab my hand while listening to this song. He says to my heart, “Never alone, Dawn.” Hear him say it to your heart too. YOU are NEVER alone.