Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

Feeling Flirty? Not So Much If You Are a Dad

posted by Linda Mintle

In our sexually hyped culture, how does a man stay true to his family?

The answers involves a little help from his biology!

Testosterone is a major sex hormone and is responsible for sex drive and reproductive growth. It is present in both men and women and impacts sexual development. Because it is higher in men, it is often blamed for men acting out sexually. But here is what you might not know about the role of testosterone and fatherhood.

Researchers at Northwestern University noted that after a man becomes a parent, his testosterone lowers. And the more involved he is in child care, the lower his testosterone drops. Anthropologist Peter Gray at the University of Nevada Las Vegas thinks that parental care can actually shape a man’s physiology. He believes that the lowered testosterone that comes from parenting helps a man cue into his child and less into the cues of other women. The lowering of testosterone may actually help when it comes to keeping your eye on your family and not on your co-worker. Of course, when testosterone levels drop too low, this can become problematic and men need to see their doctors.

But in terms of men, marriage and parenting, testosterone levels dipping a bit may give a little boost to fidelity. Biology matters and actually works to our advantage when it comes to parenting!

 

 

5 Reasons People Don’t Go to Church (Part 2)

posted by Linda Mintle

Yesterday I posted a blog about the growing trend of not going to church. Here are a few of the reasons I think people stay home:

1) Church people require us to practice what we believe. It is easier to avoid church people and go solo in your faith. But going solo doesn’t test your ability to react to the unlovely, occasionally offensive person. Jesus loved the church and highly values it. He created the body to represent Him and work together.

2) We are lazy and don’t have the discipline to get up every week and go to church. It is easier to sleep in on Sunday, read the paper and have a great breakfast.

3) Church is thought of as a consumer service. There are aspects of it we don’t like, so why consume? So many people say they don’t go based on dislikes for parts of the service.

4) Church seems irrelevant to daily living. Churches need to do a better job addressing the issues of the day and equipping people to live in our culture. Rather than isolate from the culture, the church needs to be a place that engages culture and makes a difference. For example, in preparing for a conference that would address the issue of depression, a pastor said the people in his church were not depressed–clearly he is out of touch with what people are dealing with today. How can the church encourage and help those depressed if the church doesn’t acknowledge the problem?

5) We don’t sacrifice our personal needs for others. Churches often requires participation. It is easier not to go and avoid being asked to do anything. Yet it is when we give of our selves, that we feel better.

These are just 5 of my thoughts. I would love to hear yours.

What are your reasons for not going to church, or why do you think others don’t value church enough to go? Discuss!

 

Do You Value Church?

posted by Linda Mintle

I was surprised to learn that just 21% of people who call themselves Christians are committed to a community of faith (Faith by George Barna). Even though the Apostles’ Creed affirms that we believe in the communion of saints, many Christians in America feel this is unnecessary to their spiritual maturity.

Add to this another disturbing finding by Willow Creek Association researchers: The longer a person exploring Christ attends church, the less likely he or she is to follow Christ. REVEAL research notes that people who are exploring Christ and attended church for more than five years were more likely to say they were discontented in their spiritual growth than those who attended less than five years (Move by Greg Hawkins and Cally Parkinson, Zondervan, 2011). So what is going on here?

The longer you are in church, the more stalled in your walk you become.? Then why bother to assemble with other believers?

The simply answer? Jesus thought it was a good idea and established the church as a community for believers. But we believers are finding reasons not to meet in a church setting.

Tomorrow, I will share my thoughts as to why people don’t go to church. Love to make this a dialogue. Share your thoughts!

Why do you think so many Christians don’t value going to church?

 

Grey’s Anatomy Gets Christianity Wrong Again

posted by Linda Mintle

Last night I watched an episode of Grey’s Anatomy, hoping that they would actually write the Christian character right. As in the past, I was sorely disappointed.

Here is what happened. The only virgin of the fifth year residents was staying in a hotel, preparing to take her surgery boards. The night before the boards, everyone was coping in their own way with the stress. April, whose character has refused sex based on her Christian faith, tells us her church was praying for her. The pressure of letting people down was immense. She finds herself with one of the “hottie” surgeons in a bar, drinking. Next thing we know, a man is picking a fight with her because she received his job offer in Cleveland. Clearly having had too much to drink, she physically fights and feels incredible good that she stood up to the guy, goes back to the hotel with her hottie colleague and starts to kiss him at her hotel door. True to the his character, he hesitates, tries to assess whether she really wants to go for sex and continues the sexual encounter. Kepner, drunk, feels good, free and has intercourse as a virgin. As soon as it is over, you can see the regret on her face. She tries to play it off.

The next morning right before the board exams, she is sitting next to the man she slept with and he asks if she is OK. She clearly looks distressed, but then she is about to take her surgical boards. She tells him YES because she loves Jesus. Wow, right out there with the issue. But then is when the writers get it wrong. She says, “Jesus hates me!”The scene ends.

Up til that point, I thought the story line was believable. The pressure to have sex while all her colleagues act out constantly around her has been building. The stress, along with the alcohol, being away from home, create temptations. True to life,  people give in to temptation when they engage versus flee. So far, very realistic.

To be convicted of her behavior because she acted in a way inconsistent with her faith, was really great to show. But to say, “Jesus hates me,” reflects a lack of understanding of our relationship with Christ. Now maybe she felt that in the moment because she was so disappointed with herself, but my fear is that this notion will not be corrected.

Truth is, Jesus didn’t hate her for sinning. A better response would have been, “I have sinned against my God, ” or ” I gave in to something I don’t believe is right,” or “I am so distressed with myself  for going against my beliefs.” Maybe even, “I’ve sinned against my own body.”

Jesus loves her even when she sins and that is the message of the Gospel. Jesus doesn’t condone her sin, hates her sin, but loves her and will never stop loving her. If Grey’s Anatomy will follow up with that correction, I will be OK. But my guess is the writers will get it wrong again like they did with another Christian character they wrote years ago.

This is why we need Christian writers–to thoughtfully deal with real issues like this, but with correct theology.

 

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