Evangelical churches in USA use MMA to draw young faithful

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From the “The New York Times”:

In the back room of a theater on Beale Street, John Renken, 37, a pastor, recently led a group of young men in prayer.

“Father, we thank you for tonight,” he said. “We pray that we will be a representation of you.”

An hour later, a member of his flock who had bowed his head was now unleashing a torrent of blows on an opponent, and Mr. Renken was offering guidance that was not exactly prayerful.

“Hard punches!” he shouted from the sidelines of a martial arts event called Cage Assault. “Finish the fight! To the head! To the head!”

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There are 8 comments for this article
  1. Abu Butros at 3:55 pm

    Cast Your Cares upon Him, 10-15-2012.

    The scripture: “Humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.” 1 Peter 5:6-7.

    When you have the choice between using your energy to be joyful or using your energy to fret, which do you choose? In your work, are you able to focus on the task at hand, or do concerns pull your attention away? At home, can you delight in sharing your love with your family and friends, or do you snap and yell at them in your anxiety?

    Go for God's Gold.

    What in the world can there be that is better for us, than what God wants for us? His will in our lives is perfect, and that’s what we want to strive for. God’s love is better than riches, better than entertainment, better than luxurious surroundings or succulent food. When we seek God’s will for our lives, it pleases Him, and we can rejoice!

    Jesus told His followers,"Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need.” (Luke 12:31).

    In other words, live for God, and He will provide what you need. We can trust Him in that and have peace.

    We Live for God, Our Lives Show It.

    When is it easiest to choose to use your energy to be joyful, rather than to fret? When are you most at peace? When is your life delightful? What makes you feel like you’ve accomplished the most?

    For Christians, we are gladdened when our lives show that we are living for God: we follow His will, sharing His love through the Gospel with many people.

    Many Christians feel triumphant peace in the Lord when our lives produce fruit for His glory. We seek His Kingdom first and trust Him for all else. It’s like relaxing in the arms of a loving parent after a job well done.

    We can trust God and lean upon Him. We don’t need to depend on ourselves, letting our own worries get the best of us. When we trust God, we give over our cares to Him and can produce the fruit of good soil.

    “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You!” the Prophet Isaiah wrote to God. He advised His people, “Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock.” (Isaiah 26:3-4).

    Let us fix our thoughts upon the Lord, for He is our eternal Rock!

    Because We Are Free.

    Living for God, with our thoughts fixed upon Him, will lead to our caring more deeply about our fellow people. We yearn to share the freedom from sin God gives us with others; because we are free from the burden, we want them to be, too. We have given our cares to God, and want others to experience that freedom from worry, as well.

    “You were cleansed from your sins when you obeyed the Truth, so now you must show sincere love to each other as brothers and sisters. Love each other deeply with all your heart. For you have been born again, but not to a life that will quickly end. Your new life will last forever because it comes from the eternal, living Word of God.” (1 Peter 1:22-23).

    Our God will let us know when we have lived according to His will; one day, we hope to hear Him tell us face-to-face. For now, we are His and each others’ servants. We give over any worry we might have to the Master, trusting in Him, and He will allow our lives to be peaceful, fruitful, and joyful.

    Just for You.

    God wants us to be free from fear.

    Abu Butros

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