Originally posted on Facebook–September, 2011

Maybe it’s just me, but the responsibilities of life seem to occupy twenty-five hours of the day. Margin only seems to apply to the space between the edge of a sheet of paper and the typeface—and even that has diminished! With the advent of the Facebook era, there is always some event on the horizon, asking me if I am “attending,” “not attending,” “maybe attending”—and if I choose to be negligent, it is “awaiting response.” If I decide to pass on one event, there are usually multiple alternatives. Occasionally, people will send an e-mail, or an evite, or—get this—call; asking me to invest my time with them. Word-of-Mouth has been amplified through social networking; requiring me to filter through the clutter and be intentional with how I prioritize my time and make commitments. And if you don’t request my time with at least three weeks advance notice, it’s quite possible that I’m already booked! Continue reading

Belief and Action

Originally posted on Facebook—June, 2014

“If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” ~John 15:7 NASB

“Yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.” ~Romans 4:20-21 NASB

For years, I have written notes sharing my thoughts on subjects that I believe to be essential within biblical teachings—often returning to topics repeatedly. Such topics include: love, trust, faith, hope, humility, forgiveness, sacrifice, truth, pain, and suffering. These topics arise repeatedly throughout scripture, giving credence to their importance. As should be the case given such context, I try to look at these topics through the lens of Jesus—all things pointing to the cross. A Christian’s convictions should be centered on the crucifixion and resurrection; otherwise, there is no foundation for a Christian belief system. Scripture tells us to believe in God’s character, His love, His forgiveness, His mercy, His sovereignty, His consistency, His omniscience and omnipotence. We are told to have faith in Him—to believe in Him; centering ourselves on Him. We are to possess an attitude of thankfulness and reverence towards God…an attitude of trust. There is good reason for this, when you understand how vital it is in guiding your path:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” ~Proverbs 3:5-6

Belief is a powerful ally…or enemy. There is much to suggest—within both a biblical and secular context—that belief strongly influences individuals’ attitudes, establishing their behavioral intentions, which often leads to the actual intended behavior. In the 1970s, psychology professors Fishbein and Ajzen (1975) proposed the Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA), which states just that: beliefs > attitudes > intentions > behavior/actions. More precisely, the theory suggests that individuals’ behaviors are dependent on both their attitudes about the behavior, and how others will react if they actually perform the behavior (i.e. take action). Continue reading