Tuesday, February 26, 2008
I love the title to Michael Spencer's sermon on the woman at the well. He challenges God's people to take the longest journey of your "stay-in-my-comfort-zone" life. Reach out to the people nearest you on your journey.
I think the challenge is to just begin. Mark Cahill said in sermon over Spring Break in Sanibel Community Church that the hardest one to reach out to is the first one. He's right. So just start a conversation rather than worry about your presentation. Consider how you could move the conversation to bring God up. I'll share my journey with you as I start conversations with those around me.
"Religious intolerance and discrimination should have no place in the American workplace," said Mahoney. "Employees should feel that their faith traditions, beliefs and value systems will be respected and honored."
Saturday, February 23, 2008
This resource may give you an opportunity to be bold witness for God. I trust you can reflect on the article's questions. I find it challenging to consider how to use the culture as a springboard to bring God up. May this article help you in your quest to being a fully devoted follower of Christ.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
In the end, it comes down to a matter of trade-offs. There are only six hours in a school day, only another six or so till bedtime, and adults are forever trying to cram those hours with activities that are productive, educational and (almost as an afterthought) fun. Animal findings about how play influences brain growth suggest that playing, though it might look silly and purposeless, warrants a place in every child’s day. Not too overblown a place, not too sanctimonious a place, but a place that embraces all styles of play and that recognizes play as every bit as essential to healthful neurological development as test-taking drills, Spanish lessons or Suzuki violin.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
In my case I see God's signature at the bottom. A ministry teammate for our Sowing Hope team, Celeste Kern, directed us to Psalm 136 where the phrase His love endures forever is repeated after each declaration is given. God's love endures forever. No matter how vile or evil my life, God's love endures it forever. He loves me.
I read in I John 4:10-11, "In this is love, not that we loved God , but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation of our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another." The Message paraphrase puts it another way, "This is the kind of love we are talking about--not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they've done to our relationship with God. My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other."
I can love others because God loves me. I have the power to love others even when I feel that others may not deserve any love at all. I can love because God first loved me.
Now for those who see this day as awful, lonely, and a day of despair. God extends His love to you. No matter how terrible the breakup was, how wicked the person acted, how vile the situation is presently, or how hollow and lonely you feel, God loves you. In fact, he's prepared a place for you. In Psalm 68:6, the Bible says, "God makes a home for the lonely." God invites you to come to His house when you feel all alone. He's prepared a place for you. He loves you. As you let that thought slap you in the face, don't react with aggression, but stop and take a deep breath and repeat this phrase, "God loves me." Say it again, "God loves me." Cry out to God and ask Him to make that real for you. Scream out to Him and ask Him to show you His love. As you journey on in your life, you will discover His love. Look for Him. Discover God's home for the lonely. You can live through the pain of love-lossed. You can triumph over despair. Ask God to reveal His love to you and consider how you'll embrace it. God loves you. How do I know? Because I have experienced His love for me. Find out for yourself. Take the step of faith to cry out to Him. He will answer. He does care. He truly loves you.
You are loved!
Thursday, February 7, 2008
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
In the above link, I am reminded how incredibly responsible I am as a dad. I spent the first two days of my week with my oldest daughter. She is the third child in our family. I admit that it is easier to be with my boys than with my girls. But I intended to spend time with her. We traveled to Indiana to visit with her cousins while I helped provide perspective on Native Americans to sophomores at Grace College in Winona Lake, IN.
My daughter and I enjoyed more than time together. She is so unique. I loved hearing how she views things. I marveled at what caught her eye on the trip out her window. In fact, she saw things that I missed.
She also is my princess. Yet I could jeopardize my influence in her life. I need to shore up accountability in my life. I am glad that Jim Burns' article and list of accountability questions will spur me on to make sure my walk with God lines up with my talk of my relationship with God.