Physical exercise vs spiritual exercise?

As ministers, missionaries, etc. who serve in church and Christian organizations we do work that’s supposed to be good for the mind and spirit…you know, stuff like reading the Bible, biblical commentaries, exegesis, sermon preparation, counselling, and other church-related work, etc.  The work we do is related to spiritual health, but doing this to the exclusion of physical exercise is counter-productive.

As ministers and spiritual leaders, I think it is easy for us to make excuses because we rationalize that spiritual exercise is better than physical exercise.  Out of convenience, we take 1 Timothy 4:7-9 out of context.  Fact is, many of us are overweight.  A better rationale is: physical exercise can extend the length and effectiveness of  ministry.

An interesting website/blog I ran into at Faith and Health Connection is directed toward pastors like me who rationalize spiritual health over physical health. (above image is their Model of Faith and Health).

Here’s a video gone viral that made me think about my health. Maybe it will for you too.

Movie – The Help

I watched a wonderful movie called The Help. It’s set in a Mississippi town in the 1960s just before the civil rights movement. The heroines, Skeeter (a white woman and blossoming writer) and Aibileen (a black woman and maid) begins to breakout stories of racism that black maids have been experiencing throughout their lives. This drama is an inspiring story about courage, and about friendship that transcends race. Watch it…you might really like it.

Do you support your pastor’s family?

Do you support your pastor’s family? To many people’s surprise, the pastor’s family might be one of the most mistreated families in the church.  The expectations of the pastor is that he/she ought to give, give, and give, and if there’s more to give, then squeeze him dry. The only thing pastor is expected to receive is a salary-paycheck, afterall, that’s what he’s paid to do, right? On top of that, the pastor’s spouse and kids are also expected to serve their hearts out too as a good example to the rest of the church, and also be under the microscope of the people full-time.

These are unrealistic expectations.  A website article (read more: Ministry Matters) suggest some things you can do to show support to your pastor and his family.  Here’s several:

1. Temper unrealistic expectations of the pastor’s family.
2. Make a pastoral support group a priority.
3. Support a sabbatical.
4. Protect your pastor’s sabbath day.

Do these look like something you or your church does to support your pastor?


Trinity and women in ministry

Some influential conservative evangelicals have tried to make a case for subordination of women in the church based on a subordination of the Son to the Father.  Some very popular evangelical intellectuals like Wayne Grudem and Bruce Ware seem to have re-structured their Trinitarian position so that it aligns with their personal view of women in ministry.  Their justification goes something like this.  If women are somehow subordinate to men in ministry, then our idea of the Trinity should also reflect the Son’s subordination to the Father.  The thing that would bother most classical fourth-century Trinitarian thinkers is that Grudem and Ware are misled and have tied their view of women in ministry so closely to a false view of the Trinity in such a way that if one goes against their view of women in ministry they may also be accused of going against orthodoxy. God forbid.

This is far from the truth according to classical Trinitarian theologians like T.F. Torrance, and Stephen R. Holmes of St. Andrew’s University.

All though the Son is begotten by the Father, we have hierarchically re-ordered the Trinity in such a way that the Son is now subordinated by the Father.  In other words, the Father is somehow supposed to be hierarchically above the Son in every way. This thinking is not orthodox Trinitarianism.  Actually the Trinity was never meant to inform any social hierarchies in the church. They’re completely separate issues.  This violation breaks away from the earliest Trinitarian idea established by the early Church Fathers like Augustine and the Cappadocian Fathers.  This new idea of an ontological subordination of the Son is misused in order to draw a parallel to how men and women should function in church ministry. No, God does not change, but we have somehow changed God. It seems like we’ve committed an error like Arius and it opens a new door to false doctrine… (hence, JWs).  Thus, the question for us is: “Have we conveniently misused and abused the original doctrine of the Trinity for our own purposes?”