Friday, December 10, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
- What "hoops" do I feel that I have to jump through in order to get forgiveness from God?
- What "hoops" do I expect others to jump through in order to forgive them?
Friday, October 08, 2010
A book that deals with sexual sin head on is very refreshing. The authors pull no punches when talking about a man’s battle for sexual purity. They also pull no punches when talking about noting how men often fail to be pure sexually. And for them sexual purity means:
“You are sexually pure when no sexual gratification comes from anyone or anything but your wife.”
Stephen and Fred offer very practical advice to men on how move to sexual purity. They state it all begins off with deciding to fight for it – and it may be a big battle. Once you have engaged they talk about training your eyes and mind. And end off with encouraging men to cherish their wives.It is fairly well written and is easy to read. So guys get the book and read it.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Wednesday, September 08, 2010
- Camping with friends
- David Crowder Band was great
- Need to Breathe and Group 1 Crew also rocked
- I did enjoy Family Force Five's acoustic set - though they sure did not seem like they wanted to be there
- It was amazing seeing people make/renew commitments to follow Jesus
- The speakers emphasized surrendering our total life to Jesus - what a great focus
- Famous Dave's pork sandwich
- Screaming bands - which we could hear very well at our campsite, and which went on till about 2am. Though I did find it humorous trying to fall asleep to band screaming "Die, die, die, die..." Glad my kids had fallen asleep by then.
- Sometimes it felt a bit like a Christian pep rally
- The concert wasn't really free - we were guilted into giving money
Wednesday, September 01, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
- It is in South-East Asia, bordering Thailand, India and China.
- For the past 61 years it has been at civil war.
- The government is a military dictatorship.
- The primary religion is Buddhism.
- There have been several movements that have attempted to bring freedom into the country (all of which have been harshly put down by the government)
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Friday, April 30, 2010
Monday, April 19, 2010
Friday, April 16, 2010
Monday, April 12, 2010
Friday, April 02, 2010
Thursday, April 01, 2010
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Reading: Matthew 26:36-46
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
- A safe place to live
- A nice place to live
- my health
- Freedom to worship
- Access to the bible
- nice clothes
- Great food (and lots of it)
- my wife
- my kids
- a real relationship with God
Monday, March 29, 2010
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Prison ministry is something that my church has become passionate about.
- Nothing in and nothing out - which means exactly that.
- Talk to the leaders if you have questions/concerns.
- Being there makes a difference.
- The prisoners experience love. They discover that someone actually cares for them. Many of the people in prison have come from terrible homes and/or have been cut off from family once they got in. And society in general does not demonstrate a lot of love toward them. But we come in and care about them.
- We bring hope. The reason we volunteer is because we believe they can change. God works miracles, he transforms people's lives.
- Our relationship with each other models a different world. So many people in prison have come from a broken background. The we relate with the other volunteers (and with them) shows them that there is actually a different way to live.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
The Prodigal God: Recovering the Heart of the Christian Faith, by Timothy Keller
Should I just tell you to go out, buy the book and read it? That’s what I want to tell you. But that feels a little cheap. A review of a book should give you more than just a recommendation to buy it. And to be honest most of people wouldn’t buy it just because I said buy it.
However to give a full blown review, like the ones that are written for school, would rob you of the joy of discovering this book for yourself.
So what should I do? Well let me say some of the basics.
This book is for those who seek after God. It is for both those who are not Christians and for those who have been Christians for most of their life. Personally I fall into the later group and found this little book spoke powerfully to me.
The Prodigal God is an exploration of Jesus’ parable that is often called “the prodigal son”. Timothy claims that he has “seen more people encouraged, enlightened, and helped by this passage, when I explained the true meaning of it, than by any other text.”
Timothy’s book is really about the gospel (which is what the parable is about). However Timothy points out we have often only read part of the parable and therefore have only heard part of it’s message of good news.
This book draws us to God’s wonderful grace. A grace that Timothy says we have to keep drilling into heads again and again. It is something we have return to, be inspired by, and be filled with every single day.
So now that I have given a little review go find the book and read it.
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
This is a continuation of the post “Does God break us?”
Instead of viewing tragedy as the direct work of God on our lives I believe that all tragedy is the result of sin. Sin is anything that is opposed to God, which is why I say that tragedy is not the direct work of God. (Is there a difference between tragedy and change? Yes. In the future I would like to discuss this difference. For now I am viewing tragedy as the bad things that happen to us.)
There are three basic convictions that I hold to: God is good, God loves me, and God is great.
Anything good in my life is a gift from God (it is grace) – James 1:17. I do not have so many good things in my life because I am so good, or worked so hard or am so smart. I am blessed because God is good.
The creator of the universe loves me. In fact he loves me so much that willingly died in order to be in relationship with me. Instead of beating me over the head to crush me into submission Jesus lovingly invites me to be with him.
And the God who is loves me and is good to me is not powerless and weak. He is the creator and sustainer of everything. And there is nothing that rivals him.
If this is true why do Christians suffer?
Because humans and some angels have chosen to reject God and live for themselves. The result is that we live a broken planet. We could explore the idea of a broken planet, however I would like to get more personal.
Why do I suffer? Because I reject God and live for myself. Now I am a follower of Jesus. But it is amazing how many times every day I end up living for myself instead of God (Praise the Lord that he is so gracious and loving that he keeps holding me close to him, forgiving me). And when I live for myself I make a mess of my life.
Instead of tragedy being something that God brings on me, tragedy is something that I bring on myself. I know this is not the answer for all evil, but it does explain a lot of my suffering.
Tragedy is often the result of God removing his hand blessing from me allowing me to experience the consequences of my actions/thoughts/words. It is not God beating me over the head.
Does God use tragedy to change me? Absolutely. He is that amazing. He can take something evil and still work good. But that does not mean that he was the author of evil.
Picturing God in this way I am more prone to thankfulness and prayer. I want to be close to him.
". . . you are the devil's gateway. . . you are she who persuaded him, whom the devil did not dare attack. . . . Do you not know that you are each an Eve? The sentence of God on your sex, lives on in this age; the guilt, necessarily, lives on too."
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Today I was privileged to be part of a funeral. One of the things I find fascinating about funerals is some of the practices that we do. We have traditions I am sure most people are not even aware of. Even if they have been to lots of funerals they may not be aware of some of the communities traditions.
Today I learned about a tradition we do when we bury people. Now I have known that we bury people with their feet facing east. This is because the bible tells us that Jesus will come in the east. And when he comes those who have died in Christ will be resurrected. Having our feet facing east means that we will be raised facing him.
The tradition I learned about today is that the husband is always buried to the north of his wife. This is so that man will shelter his wife from the cruel north wind.
Other passages to read:
Things to consider:
This prayer is very well known. I grew up saying it every day in school. How deeply does this prayer shape the way that we pray?
Should we pray these very words? Or is that just vain repetition?
A while ago I posted an adaptation of the Lord's prayer
Friday, March 12, 2010
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
When we experience pain and suffering in our life is that God working to get our attention? Is it God's way of removing things to insure that we become more dependent on him?
Sometimes we say things like "I am so dense God has to hit me over the head with a two-by-four to get my attention." What we are saying is that the tragedy we are in right now is God's intentional act to get our attention. I grew up believing this.
But is this right? I am not so sure.
Today I want to explore some of the difficulties that I see with this view. In a couple of days I want to explore a different way to view tragedies.
In this belief God is the author of tragedy, loss, suffering and pain. And I am the worker of good.
Think about it. This view believes that God intentionally brings tragedy to help me see him. The tragedy is the work of God.
Now the fact that God had to "hit me with a 2-by-4" indicates that I was not paying attention to him. And the fact that the tragedy is God's action means that my life was going quite well without him. I wasn't experience pain/loss/suffering. Without God I was doing very good - thank you very much. And along comes God and messes it all up. As a good Christian I am suppose to be thankful to God for this.
What seems to happen then is that I seek God in my tragedies. I need his help to get out of them (he should be able to help since he brought it on me). But that is it. My faith dries up when the tragedy is over. I don't need God any more. Oh I may try and pay attention to him in order to avoid getting hit again. But I don't need him. And my relationship with him becomes weaker and weaker as I improve my life.
Other passages: Hosea 6:4-6; Jeremiah 14:11-12; Matthew 3:1-12
Questions to consider:
In Matthew 5:16 Jesus tells his followers to let the world see their good deeds. But now he is telling them to do them in secret and not let anyone see them. Why? This is in the same sermon.
In the previous part Jesus has been inviting people to learn a new way to relate to others. How does this section on giving, prayer and fasting flow from that?
Friday, March 05, 2010
Freemind - mind mapping software. Finding useful in preparing sermons.
'Proverbs 31 husband' justifies beer habit - Lark News is satire, so consider yourself warned.
Tomorrow is a bike race here is town - AWBF (ABES Winter Bike Festival)
Wednesday, March 03, 2010
Over past number of weeks I have been preaching through the sermon on the mount (Matthew 5-7). And has it ever been challenging me.
I have become convinced that Jesus is not giving us a bunch of rules we now must obey. Rather he is inviting us to live a new way, to relate to others in a new way. Jesus is not calling us to change a few things in our behavior. It is about becoming a totally different person.
I am a very selfish person. I discern everything from my perspective. The unconscious questions that affect what I do are: does this give me pleasure (then do it) or does this cause me pain (then avoid it). Even my moral behavior is filtered through these questions. I often behave morally because of deferred pleasure (which means I will get more pleasure later) not because I am not thinking about myself.
And Jesus invited me to move from having myself at the center of my life to having God and others at the center. So how do I do that?
It begins with confessing and praying (like Peter commented last week). After all this is a work of the Spirit not of me trying harder.
Monday, March 01, 2010
Questions to consider:
What does Jesus mean when he says "Do not resist an evil doer?" Does this mean we don't call the police when we are wronged? Does this mean we should not stand up for the defenseless? How does this fit with the rest of the bible?
Friday, February 26, 2010
I have an addiction. My whole family has an addiction.
For two weeks now we have been addicted to the Olympics. The TV is on almost all the time. We eat in front of it. Spend our evenings in front of it. Rearrange our lives around it.
And we love it.
My family, in a true Canadian spirit, have focused a lot on hockey.
It was great to see our girls win gold yesterday. They are truly amazing athletes.
We are also really rooting for our boys to do the same. It was exciting to see them dominate the Russia game. We are really looking forward to the rematch against the US this Sunday (we are totally assuming that they will win tonight and on Sunday).
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Been reading the book Becoming a True Spiritual Community by Larry Crabb. At one point in the book he says that there is an wickedness that dwells in each one of us. In one of the stories he shares about himself he highlights the issue of pride. And I realized that his story was mine.
Pride infects everything that I do. I wanted to write almost everything, but wasn't convinced that would be true.
When I preach pride lurks right there. I desire for people to think that I am smart and a good preacher.
It is there when I lead bible studies. I want people see me as wise and deeply connected to God.
It is there when I resist temptation. "Aren't I so good or holy!"
It is here as I write this post. I want people to see that I am humble and growing closer to God.
Pride infects everything that I do.
Now pride isn't the only thing I feel. I do truly want to give God glory in what I do. I really want to help people because I love them and God.
But pride hovers there in every good (and bad) thing that I do.
Crabb points out that I need to realize that this is evil. Too often I have been content with my pride. Actually many times I have seen no problem at all with my pride. I need the Holy Spirit to show me how wickedly rebellious my pride is.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Many times in my life I have asked "Why bother praying?" If God already knows what I need why bother asking him for anything? And if God loves me then I certainly don't need to beg him to give me good gifts.
Now we can say that prayer in some mysterious way moves the heart of God or releases God to move in the world. This mystery is tied to our freedom. Now if this is case (which I believe that it is) then why should we pray for something more than once? Why not ask God for something once and then move on?
Prayer is more about relationship with God then about convincing God to do something. I know this. I have taught this. But this morning I was struck deeply with the truth that prayer changes me.
Prayer isn't about me convincing a reluctant God to move. It is about me encountering God. As I encounter God I learn what his desires are for the people I pray for. It is about me falling in love with these people. Prayer creates a revolution in my heart where I become open to God and to people around me.
I have to pray so often for the same people and things because I am in such desperate need of God.
Monday, February 22, 2010
Some related texts:
1 Corinthians 7
Some questions to think about:
In our sex driven culture is there any good news in what Jesus says here? Or is this a message of condemnation and judgment?
What do you hear God saying to you as you read the words of Jesus?
Friday, February 19, 2010
This family is going to need some more things. Right now we have a home for them to live in that is fully furnished for a couple of months. But after that they are going to need a lot of different stuff to help them settle.
One of the biggest needs that they will have is community. Pray that we will welcome them into our community and that they will experience love.
And most importantly that they will experience the love of God through Jesus Christ. Pray that a miracle will happen and that they will come to trust Jesus.
Thursday, February 18, 2010
Here are some more thoughts on what Jim Cantelon shared at the pastor's retreat that I attended last week.
In one of Jim's sessions he talked about being a missional church. He used Acts 2 - the story of the early church - to give us a frame for what missional church should look like. Two things stood out to me.
First, is that we need to be open to the supernatural, the transcendent. The church is not simply a country club that does some nice service things. We are the people of the living God, who have been filled with the Spirit of God. In the early church this lead to people speaking in languages they did not know (the gift of tongues).
Second, the church needs to be rooted in the bible and proclaiming the truth of the bible. We are not simply to be a group that engages in experiences. We are the people of the God of truth and he has spoken to us. And we are called to be his ambassadors to the whole world preaching truth.
These two things, the supernatural and the preaching of the word, need to be held together if we are going to be a missional church.
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Today is Ash Wednesday. For those of you who don't know a whole lot of about the church calender Ash Wednesday is the start of Lent. Lent is the 40 days before Easter and has often been used in the church as a time to prepare for Easter. Easter being the greatest holiday and celebration of the church.
Through out Lent people often either give up something or take on something to prepare for Easter. They give up things like coffee, chocolate, sugar, red meat, TV, internet, music...
The point is not to just do without these things. But it is a reminder that we desperately need God more than we need any of these things. We need the death and resurrection of Jesus to shape us more than we need TV or music or books to shape us.
People sometimes choose not to give up something but to take on something. Like, extra prayer time or reading more of the bible or memorizing scripture or working through some devotional...
Once again the point is not to just add something to our lives. It is to intentionally do something that helps focus our attention on God, to be shaped by Jesus.
This year I have choose to take on something. MB Biblical Seminary has put out a devotional for Lent. I am going to make this a part of my life for the next 40 days.
What are you going to do that will help prepare you for Easter?
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Some other passages to read:
1 John 3:11-17
Some questions to ponder:
In Matthew 5:13-16 Jesus tells his followers that they are the salt of the earth and the light of the world. What does this text have to do with being salt and light?
What does Jesus mean that unless our righteousness is greater than the religious leaders that we never enter into God's kingdom (verse 20)? How does that fit with the central belief that we are saved by grace not by works (Ephesians 2:8-9)?
Friday, February 12, 2010
Next week I hope to blog a little bit more about the pastor retreat that I was on. Being on the planning committee did not give me a lot of spare time.
The other fun thing that I did this week is watch Olympic hockey. Belearus took on Swizterland in a pre-Olympic game. My daughters' school did a field trip to the game. My wife said that it was really amusing seeing a bunch of father's there. At every other retreat there is mainly moms because the dads are working. However for hockey somehow work can be negoiated.
It was a good a game. Though by the third period my girls were a little bored.
Well I am off to keep watching the opening ceremonies (so far they are a bit dull).
Tuesday, February 09, 2010
- Relationally loyal than denominationally loyal. We are committed to things because of the relationships that we develop not because of of the denomination.
- Humble than we are proud. Jim said in the past there was a great pride in many ministries but that is becoming less.
- Action orientated. People no longer just want to sit and absorb they want to engage.
- Focused on authenticity instead of simply productivity.
- Focused on having fun not just doing things.
- Committed to a sustainable spirituality. Jim mentioned that in the past people's spiritual life was a roller coaster - need to get converted every other week.
This made me think that possibly instead of asking what God is calling us to do? We should prehaps ask who God is calling us to?
I am excited to see what God has in store for us as this retreat happens. Jim Cantelon, author of When God Stood Up, is with us to share.
I should also confess that I am a little nervous. I am in charge of a few things and I really hope they work out. People have given up money and time to be here, I am really pray that they do not feel that it is a waste of time.
Friday, February 05, 2010
On a totally different note here is a video of a totally amazing bassist, Victor Wooten.
Wednesday, February 03, 2010
A few things have challenged me to be more intentional in letting her know that I love her.
Yesterday I visited an elderly couple. They informed me that they had been married for over 60 years. At one point I was looking at some photos and the elderly man pointed to a picture of his wife and said, "that's my sweetheart." I want that, to be married 60 years and still be madly in love with the same woman. Now I have been married enough years to know that love like this does not just happen it takes some work.
Also, it happens to be February. And as we all know Valentines day is coming up. The one special day we are to show love in a special way.
Last year, my wife offered a challenge to the wives to be very intentional about showing love to their husbands through out the whole month of February.
These three things have prompted me to offer a challenge to the guys, specifically the married men. Every day this month think of a way you can show your wife that you love her and value her. You could do things like: wash the dishes, clean the house, write her a love note, buy her chocolate, watch the kids so she can go out... whatever. Just be intentional in showing your sweetheart that you love her, daily.
Monday, February 01, 2010
Friday, January 29, 2010
Henry Champ makes some excellent comments about helping Haiti (one of the reasons I love MCC) - The issue isn't money, it's staying power
Someone dropped off a couple of really powerful songs written about Haiti (done to the tune of some familiar hymns) - In Haiti there is Anguish
Here is a video of a bike race that would be so much fun to be a part of:
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
This is not how everyone grows up though. In fact many people are actively discouraged from asking questions. Questions are viewed as dangerous. One of the verses that is pointed to is Genesis 3:1.
In this verse the serpent comes to Eve and asks her a question. A question that leads Eve (and Adam) to rebel against God. Proof that questions are dangerous. So, we should avoid asking and questioning things. Right?
Well I am not convinced. In fact if you keep reading the story God enters the picture and asks questions. In fact God keeps asking more and more questions. Through out the bible God does not seem to be upset at all with people asking questions. So, since God does not get angry at people for asking questions, and even asks questions, all questions are allowed. Right?
Well... As I was pondering Genesis 3:1 I wondered if the serpent's question was really a legitimate question. The question seems to be designed to lead Eve astray. Instead of being a question that seeks truth.
So perhaps not every question is legitimate. Perhaps it really depends on our motive. Why are we asking this question? Do we want the truth? Do we want to justify some behavior? Our motives may shape the answer we get.
Keep asking questions? I believe we should. But we need to screen our questions to make sure that we are asking honest questions not illegitimate ones.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Sunday's sermon text is: Matthew 5:13-16
Related texts: Philippians 2:14-15; John 1:1-18
Questions to consider:
What does it mean for the people of God to be the salt of the earth and the light of the world?
How has the church in the past failed to be salt and light in the world?
What does it practically look like for your church to be salt and light in your neighborhood?
Friday, January 22, 2010
Greg Boyd says "I told Mennonites to 'God to Hell" and they liked it."
I am working on hosting some World Cafes for a pastor retreat in February.
Tour Down Under is happening right now.
Hip Hop Monks in Japan - sounds a lot like some of the conversations happening in the church.
Thursday, January 21, 2010
MCC Requesting Relief Kits, Comforters, Sheets as Generous Manitobans Respond
WINNIPEG, Man. – In addition to donations of money, Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) is asking the public for help in collecting 20,000 relief kits, 10,000 heavy comforters and 10,000 sheets to be sent to Haitian earthquake survivors.
To date, Manitobans have already donated approximately $800,000 to MCC’s Haiti Earthquake response.
Relief kits include personal hygiene supplies, laundry soap, towels and bandages. People who donate kits are asked to provide complete kits with only the specific items on the list of relief kit supplies that can be found at mcc.org/kits.
The relief kits can be packed in a box or bag and delivered to any of the drop-off locations in Manitoba by Feb. 28. MCC will then repackage the kits in new, 20-litre buckets. Drop-off locations can be found here: http://mcc.org/kits/dropofflocations
Heavy comforters and sheets also are being accepted at any drop-off location until Feb. 28.
MCC asks that the comforters be new and filled with quilt batting or a blanket for extra warmth. Twin-size comforters are preferred, but double/full-size comforters are accepted. Specific requirements are online at mcc.org/kits.
Flat sheets, which also will be used as mosquito netting, can be double-, queen- or king- size. Sheets, with at least a 300-thread count, should be new, cotton and light-colored, which is not as attractive to mosquitoes.
Meanwhile, MCC is airlifting 31,750 kg of canned meat and 1,000 water filters into Haiti as soon as possible. Another shipment of at least the same amount of meat, probably more, will be sent by sea. MCC is also purchasing thousands of tents and tarps.
MCC is planning a multimillion dollar response over a number of years, focusing on emergency assistance, rebuilding homes and livelihoods
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
Now, perhaps I am the only one but I have become uncomfortable with some the rhetoric that happens within men’s ministry. I believe that for the most part men’s ministry is on to something. We are different than woman, we do desire adventure, we are often more hands on…
However I am often very disappointed when it comes to application. We are encouraged to become men like the men our society wishes to create.
There seems to be two warring concepts that seek define men in our world. One is that men should be like women. The other is that men should be warriors like William Wallace (from the movie Brave Heart). Men should be hunters, protectors and strong.
Too often it feels like men’s ministry in the church has completely embraced the second concept. They declare that they are being counter cultural. But how counter cultural are you when your role models come from blockbuster movies like Brave Heart and Gladiator.
And because men’s ministry has embraced the society’s picture of men their applications are too often weak - at best. I have been at a retreat where we were challenged to ride a zip line to prove we were real men. Seriously, this is what it means being the man God created me to be?
I don’t think the bible calls men to be females. But I also don’t believe the bible calls for us to walk around saying, “I’m a man hear me roar.” We are called to a radical life of following Jesus (not William Wallace). We are called to surrender everything, give up everything and follow Yahweh.
Men’s ministry has some good theology and good points but so often it is lacking in real life application.
Text for this Sunday's sermon is Matthew 5:1-12
Some related texts: Psalm 73, James 3:17-18, Deuteronomy 4:29-32
Some questions to think about as read:
What is God saying to you?
What would it look like to live this way?
Are there people you know who live out the beatitudes?
Friday, January 15, 2010
We are in the middle of January. And even though it feels like spring today we are in the middle of winter. Here are some of the fun things that I am doing this winter:
Playing in snow. We got 5 dump truck loads of snow dumped on our front yard. We are making a maze, and tunnels, and sled runs.
Watching TV. My friend loaned me a couple of seasons of Corner Gas. Also am watching Lost and Biggest Loser.
Biking. Ok, I have to admit I haven't done a lot of biking this winter. Still riding to work every day and have a trainer set up at home. But it is still lots of fun and hope to do more.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
This Sunday's sermon text is Matthew 5:1-12.
Related texts: Deuteronomy 28, Psalm 37, Isaiah 61, Luke 6:20-26.
Questions to consider:
As you read the text(s) what is God saying to you?
What does it mean to be blessed?
Create a list of people you believe are blessed by God. Are there differences between your list and the list that Jesus makes?
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
I have been thinking a bit about men's ministry the past few days and thought I would throw up some of my thoughts in the next few blogs for your wisdom and input.
Within the church today a call is rising that men need to become the men that God created them to be.
There is a feeling that the church of today is shaped and created for women and not for men. In fact there is an assumption that our churches in a certain sense, and most definitely our society, teaches that to be male is inferior to being female. In society you can look at the school system that is more suited for girls than for boys. Or at TV commercials and shows which portray men as children who need a woman to look after them. In church you see this in this idea being promoted by the belief that you are “truly spiritual” when you are part of a small group that shares your feelings with others. Or in some of the songs that we sing (the “Jesus is my boy friend” songs).
Many having been reacting to this bias and have been calling for men to become the men that God calls them to be. In bible school I remember my teachers telling us that men were most neglected group of people within the church. Then there was the Promise Keeper movement, followed by John Eldredge's book Wild at Heart. Men’s ministries began to flourish.
Though many still feel that men are very neglected and that church is primarily focused on women.
What do you think? Are men neglected in the church? Does the church teach that men need to be more like women?
Or is the church over focused on men?
Monday, January 11, 2010
I hope Garry felt blessed being a part of our community for a Sunday.
Anyone want to share somethings you learned from Garry?
Friday, January 08, 2010
Every year my wife does the best photos of the year (and you get to vote for your favorite). So swing over to her sight to see a few of glimpses of our life.
Here are a couple links to my favorite online prayer sites:
Have a blessed weekend.
Wednesday, January 06, 2010
As I mentioned earlier this Sunday I am part of a preaching exchange. And even though excited about this opportunity I have to admit that I struggle in preaching in churches that are not my home church. I just feel very disconnected (which I am). I don't know what they have been learning, I don't what the people have been going through. Please pray for me.
This Sunday I felt lead to preach on what unites us as churches - which is God. We all worship God. So I am going to explore a couple of the different characteristics of God. The question I will explore is "who do we worship?"
And as I explore different aspects of God I will also share how too often in my life have been tempted to worship a god that is less then that God of the bible.
How would you describe the God of the bible? Are you tempted to worship a god that is less than that?
Tuesday, January 05, 2010
Alan and Micheal's fifth question (Question 1, Question 2, Question 3, Question 4) they believe the church needs to be asking is:
And perhaps most important of all, how can a rediscovery of Jesus renew our discipleship, the Christian community, and the ongoing mission of the church?The “rediscovery of Jesus” is our renewal. Jesus is what discipleship, Christian community and mission is all about.
Many times I have prayed for revival. At Bible School we would gather and pray earnestly for God to send his spirit and bring revival to the church. Revival will only happen as we encounter Jesus. We need to desire him, and seek him, and pursue him. We need to love him with all our heart, and soul, and mind and strength. We need to be obsessed with him. He is to be our hero. The one we want to be like, the one we strive to be like. Jesus is the beginning and the end of our spirituality.
Pursuing Jesus like this is discipleship (not simply keeping a list of rules).
As we become like Jesus we will begin to love like Jesus, which is the basis of community (not simply a Sunday morning gathering where we aren't known or know others).
And our mission is to invite others encounter the love of God, enter into pursuing Jesus and loving others (not simply about getting them to attend our church).
Over the past number of weeks I have explored the five questions raised in ReJesus. I have looked at them in a general sense and not applied them to specific situations. But I believe the true benefit of these questions comes from exploring them in light of specific situations. So I encourage you to do that.
Monday, January 04, 2010
This Sunday I get the privilege of being part of a preaching exchange in my community. Every year on the second Sunday of January several of the churches in this area do a preaching exchange. It is one of the small ways that we affirm that we are all part of the same community (the global church). As leaders within the global church we are working hard at blessing and building up other churches. We strive to work together (even if we have some differences in theology).
So this Sunday I have the honor of participating in the service at Halbstadt and my congregation gets blessed by having their pastor share with us.
Please be praying for Garry as he will sharing. And pray for me that I will have the words from God that will bless and build up that congregation.