Saturday, September 30, 2006

Today I worked on a booth. It is something that I built so that I could direct people's attention to our upcoming STORM event. (STORM is a Word of Life teen evangelistic event) God has blessed by having the people in our church supply much of the food that is needed & the drivers needed to go out and get the teens. This event takes place on October 11 (Wednesday) - and I would appreciate your prayers for it. We are bringing in a WOL IMPACT team & a special speaker - so that ought to be fun too!

Anyway, the booth looks really good. I was just going to make it out of 2x4's and plywood...
painting it with spray paint. However, I found some naugahide (sp?) material - kind of looks like fake leather - that I placed around the plywood, pulling it tight, making it appear to really be 'high-class'. To the sides I attached this material with furniture tacks, which gives it a classic look. The top of the 'counter' was made from some left over material I had from some bathroom work we had done. It came out pretty good! It took most of the day to finish it - so I was glad to be done & have it placed properly in the church's foyer.

We had a real breezy storm work its way through this afternoon. The wind blew harder than it has in a long while. I could watch the front move in from the west - with the wind changing directions back & forth rapidly. I turned the radio on to WRSW 107.3 fm, but nothing was happening, because they were still playing the Notre Dame v. Purdue game. Within about 1/2 hour or so, the storm blew completely over and now it is quite calm.

This coming Thursday I am having some major tooth work done. Last Thursday I had a tooth break. I don't understand the Lord's timing in all of this. My wife & I are heading to Indy on Sunday for a NANC (National Association of Nouthetic Counselors) conference on Counseling the Attributes of God. So, I guess I will just have to 'cowboy up' while in Indy and wait for Thursday's appt. The estimated cost for the work is just over $15oo... and we will see how God provides for that. All total they (the dental staff) told me that I needed an additional $1000 work done after this initial appt. I do know that this needs to be done, but wonder how God will provide. He always does - and I trust what He has disclosed in Matthew 6.

I am looking forward to the Lord's Day tomorrow... today as I worked in my garage I played 90.9 fm the whole time. It was like a 'pre-worship' day to Sunday. God is good all the time.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Literal interpretation of Scripture

While surfing a site that I frequent often,, I came across a post concerning the literal interpretation of Scripture.

Matthew 19 is the passage that was referenced, specifically the section where Christ states, " is easier for a camel to pass through an eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God..."

I was suprised at how many folks have been incorrectly taught that Christ is referencing "a gate" for camels to pass through. The false teaching refers to a small gate for camels to enter at night. This supposedly was in place so that the large gates would not have to be opened and the city be exposed to whatever evil may lay outside the gates. They were taught that the camel would have to offload whatever burdens it was carrying (the riches) and get on its knees (humility) and crawl through the gate to enter the city. While that may make for 'good preachin', it is terrible exegesis of the passage.

Context shows that Christ is pointing out to a specific young rich man that his wealth was keeping him from following Jesus. This young man ended going away grieving because he just couldnt pry his fingers off his wealth to follow Christ. The ironic thing is, and something that Jesus pointed out later in the dialogue, that by giving up everything to follow Him, you actually gain more than you could ever imagine.

The problem in today's society... and in our churches... is that we want to soften the teachings of Christ. Let me be clear - Jesus wasnt referring to a gate that made it kind of inconvenient for wealthy caravans to enter into the city. He said, referring to an actual needle's eye, that it would be easier for this large animal to squeeze through there than a rich man to enter into heaven.

Immediately the cry goes up: " you're saying that rich people can't get saved!!... your theology is all messed up!!..." Not so. I simply point out what Christ said, "...with men it is impossible, but with God, all things are possible..."

What are you holding onto that is keeping you from pursuing Christ passionately and wholeheartedly? Do you have a relationship with Christ? Are you serving Him?

We cannot get away from the fact that the gate to heaven is small and the pathway that gets us there is narrow... and few there be that find it. Jesus Himself said that many will cry out to Him in the day of judgment, "...Lord, Lord... did we not (serve You)?..." and He states clearly that to those people He will say, "...depart from Me, I never knew you..."

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

stronghold in times of trouble...

where have i been? the daily jolt has gotten a little less daily it seems. there is much taking place however: seminary class, homework, national holiday, homework, youth work, homework... and then theres always homework. this greek exegesis class is really requiring a lot of my time. but now i have settled into my office chair, mug of mocha java gevalia steaming at my right side... and an open bible in front of me. i hope this encourages you as it did me.

david is writing in psalm 9 & he praises the Lord throughout the psalm. it is at vs.9 that i want to stop though: "...the LORD also will be a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble..." what a verse to meditate on. will you take time to do just that... its okay, i'll wait for you.
this is a picture of the edinburgh castle in edinburgh, scotland. beautiful isn't it? do you see how they built this castle right on the edge of a mountain? can you look in the lower left hand corner and see the bus coming up the road - that should provide some ratio for you. we walked up along that road from the far side of the castle when i visited there. i can say that you would be at a tactical disadvantage to try and attack the castle coming up that mountain. it is a stronghold.

see what the LORD is for you? He's better than a thousand edinburgh castles! He is the place to go when you are oppressed by the cares of this life. He is the One to turn to when you are in times of trouble. He is your stronghold. why stay outside the boundaries of safety? turn to Christ and trust in Him - He will see you through these times of disturbance.

perhaps we'll finish up this time of meditation tomorrow with a look at vs.10. it is encouraging as well. will you read it? i hope so.

until then, keep the coffee hot and the LORD close at heart.