Eugene Cho

How could it possibly be a “Good” Friday?

pa009086

Good Friday. Huh?

Why is it “good?”  How could it possibly be good?

  • In a culture that is ever so quick to get to the product
  • In a culture that is ever so quick to avoid suffering and pain and seek ways to medicate ourselves to avoid pain
  • In a culture that is ever so quick to jump to the bunnies and eggs
  • In a culture that is ever so quick to commercialize, capitalize, and consumerize Read the rest of this entry »

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“Umm, I didn’t ask you to give up coffee or chocolate. I asked you to surrender your life.” – God

foam

We are now in the Lenten season and let me begin by first sharing the conclusion of my post in case you have an attention span of a 2-year-old:

Lent isn’t about you
or about what you’re giving up.

But we’ll get to that soon.

For those that might not be familiar with Lent, it is the 40 day period (not including Sundays) between Ash Wednesday and Holy Saturday that has traditionally been a time of preparation for those who were preparing for baptism and later expanded to include the larger Christian community.  It marks a time of prayer, penance, repentance,  humility, self-denial, and soul searching as one draws closer to the Passion of Christ and ultimately, culminating in the celebration of the Resurrection. You can check out my sermon to get a crash course on the history of Lent – and how it started (likely) as a 2-3 day event and eventually became a 40 day rhythm by 325 AD at the Council of Nicaea.

I appreciate the Lenten season for many and various reasons. In fact, the Lenten season is important to me because it helps me create rhythm in my life – something especially helpful when busyness, chaos, randomness, clutter, and lots of noise inundate my life. I deeply appreciate Lent because it helps me prepare for Passion Week  – the final week of Christ. And while we know Easter brings upon us the celebration of the resurrection, I am grateful that the Lenten season more thoughtfully and deeply prepares me for Crucifixion Friday or known by most as Good Friday.

This year, I’m choosing – along with some other things – to give up “coffee” during the Lent season. Trust me, for someone that runs a cafe, has his offices in a cafe, and has access to Stumptown Coffee, this will certainly be a “test” of self-denial.

But even after acknowledging that I myself am “giving up” coffee during Lent, I’m ambivalent and reticent about how vogue or easy Read the rest of this entry »

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the momma of all easter egg hunt church extravaganza

Someone sent me this story today and I honestly thought it was a satire…a la something you might read on the Onion. I was looking and looking to see if I can find something to give it away that it was not real but alas…it’s the real deal.

A church in Texas is having the momma of all Easter egg hunts that includes more than $1 Million in prizes. In fact, it actually includes stuff totaling over $4 million dollars in prizes.

Bay Area Fellowship, the largest church in Corpus Christi, is giving away flat-screen televisions, skateboards, Fender guitars, furniture and 15 cars — yes, cars — at its Easter services next week.

Wow.

I hate to criticize other churches and honestly, I get it…I understand the motivation summed up the pastor of this church:

He hopes the prizes will help Bay Area lure some people who don’t normally go to church or those who have lapsed in their faith.

Here are some of my thoughts:

  1. Wow.
  2. Huh?
  3. Everything truly is bigger in Texas.
  4. I want that Audi A4 Turbocharged for myself.
  5. Wow.
  6. Joel Osteen and $57K worth of donated Left Behind Video games to its children’s ministry?
  7. The amazing thing: most if not all goods were donated by their church members & community. That is pretty impressive.

Okay, your turn: What do you think?

Here are some portions of the article: Read the rest of this entry »

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if jesus were on facebook

This is brilliantly funny – worth sharing every year around Holy Week and since Holy Week is coming up and well – meant to be holy – I’m sharing it now so no one accuses me of being egregiously unholy.

If Jesus Christ were on Facebook, his account and “wall” would look exactly like this (original creator of unknown).  Not only is it brilliantly funny, it’s also pretty darn biblical. Check it out and:

What made you laugh the most.

Some highlights:

  • Jesus has 777,777,777,777 fans.
  • The Disciples wrote on Peter’s wall:  So, Jesus told us to walk up to people we don’t know, and basically steal their colt and donkey…  This is sketchy, don’t you think???
  • The High Priests have created a group: Read the rest of this entry »

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resurrection people – he has risen!

caravaggio_doubting_thomas

By God’s grace, we live as Resurrection people.  Through Christ, we are reconciled to God and because of Him, we are called to the ministry of reconciliation.  Do not be afraid…He has risen.

Happy Easter, everyone!

The word of the Lord from the Gospel of Matthew 28

Jesus Has Risen

1 After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.
2 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

5 The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”

8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. 9 Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”

The Guards’ Report

11 While the women were on their way, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the chief priests everything that had happened. 12 When the chief priests had met with the elders and devised a plan, they gave the soldiers a large sum of money, 13 telling them, “You are to say, ‘His disciples came during the night and stole him away while we were asleep.’ 14 If this report gets to the governor, we will satisfy him and keep you out of trouble.” 15 So the soldiers took the money and did as they were instructed. And this story has been widely circulated among the Jews to this very day.

The Great Commission

16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

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all jesus wants is to eat with you

last supper by leonard da vinci

There are numerous significant theological and biblical meanings behind the Last Supper (Passover Seder) and while the pursuit of those meanings are worthwhile and powerful, here’s the most simple and as significant:

Jesus wants to eat with us.

Let me say that again.  The Triune God of the cosmos not only created the world and humanity but desires fellowship, communion, and friendship.  And when sin entered the world and humanity to wreak  havoc and choas, God intervened again – with the redemptive mission of restoring Shalom – all that which God intended for us.

The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood (John 1:14 / The Message)

Throughout Jesus’ journey, he was eating with Read the rest of this entry »

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if jesus were on facebook…

If Jesus Christ was on Facebook, it would look like this [original source  unknown].  This is pretty darn funny – even on Holy Week.  Sorry if this is irreverent but too good not to share – especially because it’s funny and most of it is pretty bibically accurate.  Some highlights:

  • Jesus has 777,777,777,777 fans.
  • The Disciples wrote on Peter’s wall:  So, Jesus told us to walk up ot people we don’t know, and basically steal their colt and donkey…  This is sketchy, don’t you think???
  • The High Priests have created a group:  How to Use the Temple for piety  AND profit.
  • The High Priests have given Judas a gift:  30 pieces of Silver.

You can check out it out HERE. You should also check out Jesus’ life according to Twitter. Also very brilliant, compelling, and biblically accurate.

Jesus’ Facebook original source: unknown

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our jesus riding to his own “inauguration” on an ass

jesus riding on a donkey

The image of Palm Sunday is one of the greatest ironies.  Jesus Christ – the Lord of Lords, King of Kings, the Morning Star, the Savior of all Humanity, and we can list descriptives after descriptives – rides into a procession of “Hosanna, Hosanna…Hosanna in the Highest” – on a donkey – aka – an ass.

Jesus rides in on an ass at his own Inauguration.  Goodness gracious.

My friend, Shane Claiborne, shares that a modern equivalent of such an incredulous image is of the most powerful person in our modern world, the United States President, riding into a procession…on a unicycle.

I’ll be honest: I would have asked for a chariot or at least an Aston Martin.  But that’s just me.

But Jesus does this for a reason.  In fact, everything he does has a reason.  His whole life is a model of the Kingdom of God.  But if that is so, why are we as Christians so enamored with power?  Why are we – even as Christians – still so enamored, fighting, and jostling with who gets to the sit by Jesus at the table?

How do we continue our call to be Light and Salt; to love mercy, seek justice; to preach and live out the Gospel – all while modeling the very nature of Christ?

I enjoyed the reflections of another friend, Christine Sine (from Seattle) who as part of her Are You Ready for Easter reflections on Palm Sunday, shared the following thoughts: Read the rest of this entry »

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easter bonanza galore special festivities

The local papers no longer call me the week before Easter.  The last few years, at least one of the local papers called to ask the following question:

“Is your church doing anything special for Easter?”

And each year, I just feel so lame because I don’t really have a good answer.  Read the rest of this entry »

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