Tuesday, November 29, 2011
yesterday was a historic day; it will never happen again.
an individual who cares not for attention nor does this person require credit for accomplishments
an individual who has influenced thousands
an individual who has selflessly given, even more than what was able to give
an individual who has shown me a heart of compassion more than anyone on the face of this earth
an individual who has blessed me in unimaginable ways
an individual who could soften the hardest heart even without a word spoken
an individual who has pardoned me and others when the consequence under the law was justice
an individual who is so attuned to the holy spirit i personally have no where to hide
an individual who's love is greater than the distance that separates her from her grandkids
an individual who would shoulder me around the world
an individual who gave me my first job
an individual who makes the best t.v. trash in the world (spicy and without nuts)
an individual who will make me anything i want
an individual who has been praying for me since before i was born...and the prayers are being answered even today
an individual who will pray for you whenever you want
an individual who open up a room for you to stay if you need one
an individual who would cook you a meal or get you a cup of coffee or both even at the same time
an individual who doesn't need a pulpit to preach the good news of the lord even though one could be filled if needed sunday through saturday
an individual who has so much fruit of the spirit that she has to store some of the preserves in a jar for her toast in the mornings
an individual who has pool cleaning ability second to none
an individual who can eat cereal and sandwiches the rest of her life if it means someone else can have steak and lobster
an individual who has a voice that would make michael buble cry
an individual who the most interesting man in the world only wished was his mother
this individual is the youngest 50 yr old you will ever meet and it was her birthday yesterday. if you happen to miss it don't worry, she is so forgiving that she will consider your birthday wish today as an early one for next year. thus, canceling out the forgetfulness due to the early wish.
she is my mom and the world is a better place because of her. mother teresa doesn't even hold a flame to her. she is so great that she would willingly be your mom too. all you need is to ask.
mom i love you...but i am betting because of your amazing discretion you knew that already.
Tuesday, November 22, 2011
i remember working in the nursery when i was a teen. it changed my life and brought deeper awareness to my desire to be involved with kids as a counselor now. i love children. when my mother was a kindergarten teacher i had a wonderful time going in there periodically and hanging out with them. usually it involved laughing at their jokes and making noises with them that we all would laugh at.
when i was a teenager my mom was in charge of the nursery's on sunday mornings which meant i was able to go into the nursery and be involved with kids that were really young (3 or 4). i remember what great times i had. here is a blog post by mark driscoll who shares his experience with kids.
As a new Christian and college freshman, my first ministry was taking care of a bunch of young kids during a daytime women’s Bible study. It was the best. The kids were super fun, and on any given week I had anywhere from maybe 10 to 20 kids under the age of five for a few hours without any help. Those hours included crackers, juice, Bible stories, wrestling for the boys, and tea parties for the girls. The moms were surprised that a 19-year-old single guy would volunteer for the nursery, but I’m glad I did. And I’d encourage the same for other single men. In fact, I have nine reasons why single men should work in the church nursery.
you can read the 9 reasons here.
often times amongst the commentary sections of articles i read online i find heated debates taking place. mostly there are point of views/perspectives between two individuals who are both trying to argue their point of view via the world wide web. this is stupid, but not the point of this particular entry.
many of the arguments will resort to something that seems condoned in the bible. this is usually ammunition by the one who does not know god nor do they have a desire to seek his truth and righteousness. still this is not an excuse for the nitwit who vehemently defends his conviction to the point of crossing the line into sin.
one of many topics is that of slavery. john starke of the gospel coalition has this to say:
-In Paul's day, some 80 percent to 90 percent of the inhabitants of Rome were slaves.-Slavery was not raced based.
-Some slaves were prisoners of war. Many others were men and women who sold themselves into slavery in order to relieve a burdensome debt.
-Slaves had certain rights under Roman law and could normally be expected to be released after seven years or by age 30.
None of this background should imply that slavery was desirable. This was still a corrupt system. Paul elsewhere instructs Christians to gain their freedom if possible (1 Cor. 7:21). And in 1 Timothy 1:10, he condemns slave-traders. Also, many Bible readers miss the implications of Paul addressing both slaves and their masters in his letters to the Ephesians and Colossians. He expects them to fellowship together in the same church as brothers and sisters in Christ. They sing together, eat together, bear each other's burdens, and, as history will tell us, suffer together when Roman persecutes Christians.you can read the rest here
Monday, November 21, 2011
the lord is just and true. "at the end of the day" i must always ask myself...is my eye envious because he is generous. the lord too loves righteousness and hates wickedness and these are ingredients for a wonderful oil of joy to flow.
joy, which is ultimately what i am looking for, will increase with a devoted love to righteous living and the complete hatred of wickedness (note: this is applied to myself). i need a reminder of this proven rhythm time and time again. an envious eye produces nothing worthy of the glorious lord that came to free me of its stronghold.
these are none of what the spirit offers, nor are they the definition of true love. rather, these are all fruits of an envious eye with a belief that things are unfair (consequently, envy will not foster faith and hope; doubt and unbelief are inevitable).
i love finding things out on how to raise my children more biblically. some things i feel good about because, of course, my conviction lines up with a certain perspective and other times i find myself re-analyzing something because i realize i should parent differently. here is a great post by mark lauterbach.
you can read the rest here.
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
Monday, November 7, 2011
today i had a brilliant prayer time at the cpr (commission prayer room). i have to admit however, being the caretaker of the kids, at this current time in my life, i was not so excited about transporting a toddler around brussels. partly because he is the kind of kid who NEEDS a nap EVERY day (i know i am the only parent who has a kid like that). this new venture downtown was not something that would guarantee sanity, at least i knew i would be going insane around 4pm due to a cranky child. i also am doing life without a vehicle and even though i am, most of the time, mentally prepared to handle the inconvenience i would like to remind you that i am still a "merican." there is that little voice that continues to remind me that if i lived in the states i would be an idiot if i didn't own a car. so naturally i entertain the thought that a car is absolutely essential to living. thankfully i find out every day that it is not...but that is only by the grace of god.
titus slept nearly an hour at the cpr and that seemed, up to this point, to be sufficient. we will see around an hour from now. the commitment i have made is participating in the activities 2 times a week (mondays and thursdays). i can do this, i can do this, i can do this.
back to the point...today at the cpr was very rewarding. when i woke this morning to be with the lord i read through the moments that saul had heard the voice of jesus and received his spiritual awakening. i re-read the moments ananias was charged with laying hands on saul for him to receive his eye sight again. i am certain, as i thought about it, saul's reputation preceded him greatly. saul was pursuing those who began walking after the way. he was violently opposed to this movement, which by the way, was gaining momentum due to the holy spirit and the power god was releasing in the manifestation of miracles.
so imagine, people are becoming excited; enjoying peace with each other, being built up; going on in the fear of the lord (this bit is huge) and in the comfort of the holy spirit, continuing to increase (acts 9:31). the news of saul coming to damascus would not necessarily generate a sense of rejoicing in one accord. further more, ananias was god's instrument to lay hands on the very individual who ruthlessly opposed this movement. ananias, as human as any one of us, felt great discomfort at the request of the lord. but understand this one mindset of ananias...he feared the lord more than he feared saul. i don't know how long he wrestled with this request, all we are given is that saul was blind for 3 days. ananias was not overcome by the natural authority saul had, he did not fear what could have happened. instead, he feared the lord. now get this...the fear of the lord actually gave him the courage to do what god wanted him to do. this is a profoundly different type of fear here.
it is recorded in psalm 25:14 that "the secret of the lord is for those who fear him, and he (god) will make them know his covenant." again, in psalm 31:19 "how great is thy goodness, which thou hast stored up for those who fear thee." i have no doubt in my mind a faithful and god fearing reader/doer of the word, as ananias, echoed david's sentiment in the later verse of 24 in chapter 31, "be strong, and let your heart take courage, ALL you who hope in the lord."
what a refreshment, what a testimony, what a bold truth for all who genuinely rest their hope in the lord. those who do are able, with authority, to tell their hearts to take courage. i hold to the conviction that the fear of the lord is truly the beginning of wisdom.
Thursday, November 3, 2011
explanation, give it to me!!! i wish i could. every year i attend the cj i return home stirred, provoked, and inspired to plow a little deeper, dig a little harder, and sow the seed a little farther. this year is not any different.
in reality the cj is where it began for most of the team. this was our 3rd in attendance in just 4 years as a 9th hour squadron and our sphere of influence is growing only by the grace of the lord. confirming what he is saying to us, as a team, he is also demonstrating in events such as these. spontaneous songs, healings, awakened hearts and most importantly transformation into a submitted life unto his calling are all what you would have found here if you had attended.
this year we were able to have more of a direction in the look of the stage. i think this years stage design was one of the best this conference has seen. you can see in some of the photos from our facebook page that we really made an effort in giving the stage a look that would draw attention to whoever was leading worship or whoever was just on the stage.
upon leading worship we were able to lead the group in a few of the french songs that we wrote and there was a great response to these songs. allyster did a tremendous job leading the congregation in french along with laetitia. after one of our worship sets there arose a spontaneous song from the youth. you can see what it was like here:
here is a different video that allyster had filmed while on stage. we, as a band, stopped playing because the expression from the young people was so overwhelmingly marvelous that we just let them express their hearts as you can see they did in the video.
it is really starting to feel ground breaking for me personally. i have been able to witness things that seem to have made an impact. now it is starting to gain momentum and be very consistent. i truly see the lord moving amongst these people in marvelous ways.