Category Archives: Current Events

UMaine student groups team up for February 27th Day of Prayer with ‘missional’ focus

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UMaine chapters of the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Navigators, and Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru) are teaming up to provide prayer and worship opportunities for students during the 2014 Collegiate Day of Prayer.

Everyone — community members and students — are invited to attend and participate.

Selfishness, pride, and the Richard Sherman in all of us

Photo: USA Today

First, let’s make something clear: Richard Sherman is not a thug (ie., ‘a cruel or vicious ruffian, robber, or murderer’).

By now, even if you’re a nominal sports fan, you’ve probably seen the interview heard ’round the world in which Richard Sherman, who is a defensive back for the Super Bowl-bound Seattle Seahawks, proclaimed himself ‘the best corner in the game’ (which is true), calling San Francisco 49ers Wide Receiver Michael Crabtree a ‘sorry receiver.’ You can see the short interview below.

Equality through Christian principles: MLK Jr. in his own words

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Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, a Baptist minister, is best known for his dream of racial equality in America — a dream we are still working to fully realize today. While many professing Christians were on the wrong side of the fire hoses and lunch counters in Birmingham and elsewhere during the Black Civil Rights struggle, King — a devout Christ-follower — trusted in the full armor of God to ultimately overcome his contemporary adversaries.

Let’s be God-centered with our New Year’s Resolutions instead of self-centered

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With the new year comes an opportunity for a clean slate. While we must attempt to make things right with whomever we’ve wronged, as much as it depends on us, we ultimately must forgive others and move on. And this is Biblical – God says to ‘forget the former things; do not dwell in the past’ (Isa 43:18).

Therefore, we typically look to the new year to start fresh and to set new goals for ourselves. Maybe ‘turn over a new leaf’ in some area of our life. For us guys, typical goals include a desire to be a better man, husband, father, employee, be healthier and more fit — you name it.

‘Happy Holidays’ is not a threat to Christmas, but angry Christians are

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If I have to read one more article from some angry ‘Christian’ belly-aching that we must stand against people saying ‘Happy Holidays’ instead of ‘Merry Christmas’, I may just have to write a counter-article on the subject. So be it.

Here’s my open letter to all angry Christians out there –

Dear Angry Christian,

Seriously, do you have so little faith in the Sovereign God of this Universe that you think one 2-word phrase will topple the Christmas holiday if it’s used in place of some other 2-word phrase?

Seriously, why Santa? Re-thinking the purpose of this jolly old Christmas ‘fairy tale’

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Seriously, why Santa? I concede it’s all probably harmless, and “all in good fun” — but why? Wouldn’t kids be more grateful if they knew from day one their gifts came mommy, daddy, grammy, grandpa, or better yet — are blessings from God? Why base their formative years on a fairy tale? Because “everyone else is doing it” and you don’t want your kid to be left out? Is that really a good enough reason? These are genuine questions I’m asking as a new parent who hasn’t had to deal with it yet, and I’m honestly looking for feedback from parents.

The reason I hear the most is that “doing Santa” is a family tradition with many wonderful childhood memories, and parent’s want to re-live these memories with their own children. I don’t have a problem with that, and I respect how people choose to celebrate the Christmas season with their families. The purpose of this blog, however, is to think ‘counter culturally.’ And with that goal in mind, I try to step back and simply evaluate why our culture is so set on carrying on the ruse of jolly old St. Nick with kids, some well into their school-age years.

Same people, new vision: Abundant Life now Grace Church Bangor

Out with the Old - the Abundant Life sign comes down as church changes name and vision

In a new series where I will feature a specific Bangor Area church or Christ-based ministry, Counter Culture takes a look at the church formerly known as Abundant Life for the last 25 years. Located on outer Broadway, they have recently changed their name to Grace Church Bangor.

I reached out to senior minister of the church Russ Hewitt for more information on this transition, and the reasons behind the change.

Maine ACLU bullies Biddeford over school assembly deemed ‘too religious’ (VIDEO)

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Last week the Maine ACLU threatened legal action against Biddeford Schools because of a school assembly that one parent deemed “too religious” for their taste. The ACLU said Biddeford could avoid the law suite if they apologized for allowing it — which the school department quickly did — much to the dismay of the Maine Christian Civic League.

I can’t say I’m surprised at how the events unfolded. I don’t expect our public schools to be able to safeguard our children from bullying, peer-pressure, intolerance, and sexual promiscuity when they are subject to appeasing organizations such as the ACLU — whose demands are so “bullish” and intolerant.

Shutdown or not, our faith shouldn’t be in government

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Does anyone else notice the irony that on the same day the Federal government shuts down, the Maine sales tax increased because of a deal reached this summer to prevent a similar shutdown at the state level? It seems we either have to keep paying more for government services, or shut them down all together.

But the problem is, governments at all levels have run out of ways to “raise money” because there are less and less people from which to collect it. So the question must be asked – who pays?

Most often, it ends up being the middle class

Chuck Smith: visionary pastor changed American church, legacy felt in Maine

Chuck Smith, seen here hosting a recent radio show, was founder of the Calvary Chapel church movement in 1968, which spawned the "Jesus People" movement of the early 1970s in California. While his legacy is expositional (verse-by-verse) preaching through the Bible, his churches are credited with influencing the casual atmosphere and high-energy music of the modern American worship service found in a variety of contemporary evangelical churches today. He died October 3rd, 2013 after a battle with lung cancer.

I typically write about more general topics related to the Christian faith, and my personal faith journey. This time, though, I’d like to use this blog to discuss the passing of a man who changed the landscape of American church. And while he called California his home, his legacy is felt in Maine, and will continue to impact lives here for many years to come.

I sat down at my computer Thursday morning and was met with the news that Pastor Chuck Smith, founder of the Calvary Chapel church movement in the mid-1960′s, had died. But Pastor Chuck Smith did not die, he moved. In 1994, those were his words…