But as for that in the good soil, these are the ones who, when they hear the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patient endurance. (Luke 8:15 NRSV)

We have reached new lows when it comes to public morality. Not only with regard to sex scandals in the highest places, but also with regard to traditional virtues of all kind. Last year the Rev. John Papworth, an Anglican priest in North London, England, was quoted in the newspapers saying it is morally justifiable to steal from large supermarkets because these stores are putting smaller ones out of business. What great spiritual advice coming from a pastor. Yes, we pastors need some help in this department.

In a sense, we are replacing being good with feeling good. Being good requires too much of us. Feeling good requires nothing at all.

No matter what you may hear, Jesus did not give us a feel good religion. Jesus has called us to have "an honest and good heart" that bears fruit.


Loving God, it may not always feel good doing the right thing, but may I be true to your call. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Ron Newhouse

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