Links to Go (April 1, 2014)

Even Christian Bookstores Have Had It With Fake Testimonials About Heaven

All true! But finding flaws in these books is a bit like shooting Jesus fish in a barrel. It should not take a committee to figure out that a 4-year-old’s story of seeing Jesus riding on a “rainbow horse”—as recounted in Heaven Is for Real—is nonsense, let alone not non-fiction.

Religion isn’t dying. It may be rising from the grave.

When 2015 finally came around, Bibby decided to revisit his book and check on his predictions. He discovered that for many religious groups, he was quite off-target. Catholics, for example, are building new churches in some parts of the country. Evangelicals increased their total numbers as Canada’s population grew. The same goes for Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs. He had accurately forecasted a long, drawn-out decline for the United Church of Canada and the Anglican Church. But some religions were getting an infusion of new blood.
“What I screwed up on—it sounds so naive looking back—[is] I didn’t allow for the immigration variable,” Bibby says. “The thing that pumps new life into religion in Canada has been this mammoth entrance not only of Muslims, but also Catholics.” Not to mention the Protestants, Sikhs and Hindus.

10 Things the Church Puts Ahead of Reaching People

  1. Location
  2. Buildings/Architecture
  3. Tradition
  4. Music preferences
  5. Programs
  6. Control
  7. Social Status
  8. Cleanliness
  9. Status Quo
  10. Religion

Helping Children Benefit from the Sermon

As a pastor I often get the question, “Do you have any advice for helping my kids to benefit from the sermon?”
This is a question that I really appreciate because it recognizes the importance of the preaching of the Word of God and our reception of it. It recognizes that even the children are to hear, and to best of their ability, understand what is being preached.
What follows are some things that I have done as a Dad and also as a pastor.

Some Distractions Can Actually Help You Be More Creative

Email, social media, and other distractions rarely help because they’re similar to what you’re already doing. But taking a walk around the block, shooting a few baskets, or simply playing with a Slinky can often switch your thinking enough to kick-start new ideas.

Thousand-year-old Anglo-Saxon potion kills MRSA superbug

The researchers then tested their recipe on cultures of MRSA, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a type of staph bacterium that does not respond to commonly used antibiotic treatments.
The scientists weren’t holding out much hope that it would work — but they were astonished by the lab results.
“What we found was very interesting — we found that Bald’s eyesalve is incredibly potent as an anti-Staphylococcal antibiotic in this context,” Harrison said.

A Classy Coach Helped An Opposing Player Join The 1,000-Point Club

West Virginia was leading Villanova 73-67 with 7.9 seconds remaining in overtime on Sunday in a WNIT quarterfinal. And then something awesome happened.
Knowing that Wildcats senior Emily Leer had 999 career points, Mountaineers coach Mike Carey told his players to intentionally foul her so she could get to the free throw line. She managed to hit one of her two attempts and officially joined the 1,000-point club. West Virginia emerged victorious, 75-70, but sportsmanship was clearly the day’s real winner.

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