Saturday, October 11, 2014

Momentos

As a child I used to keep interesting rocks that my brother and I would find in the wild. Each keepsake told its own story of how it came to fruition. Each line on each stone naturally carved into a one of a kind gem. Sure I had a favorite rock or two but it was my collection holistically that made me smile. I also collected coins at one point but something about their similutude with one another bored me to death. One thing I love about God is how He loves us individually as children with all of our quirks and scars but He also loves us holistically as His bride. Just as I would pick up a dirty algae ridden stone from the river and wash it clean... so Jesus washes His children of our sins until we are part of His collection. Until we are His immaculate bride. Until we are shining in His showcase for the world to see. 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Mapping Out Manhood

I once read a book called the Art of Manliness. It taught me things like shaving with a straight razor, being chivalrous by RSVP'ing in a timely manner, and washing my body a minimum of 2x in order to achieve the manliest possible scent. While many of our grandparents' customs have been lost in our generation there is an alarming knowledge gap between what our forefathers were taught and what we know. The seeds of this knowledge gap are coming to fruition and the consequences are disastrous and include:
  • An unprecedented amount of fatherlessness in our country
  • Angry, violent, and wrathful youths full of violence and hate
  • Increasing crime rates with prisons at full capacity
This knowledge isn't just about opening doors for your lady friends but about men leading their families with the admonition and conviction of Jesus Christ (Ephesians 6:4). As God began teaching this to me I began to slowly realize that as men we are sorely lacking as leaders in our homes. As husbands we are to teach our wives the word and good doctrine. We are to pray for and with our wives and sanctify them with the word of God (Ephesians 5:25-33). As fathers we are to stand with our children in prayer and teach them the scriptures (Deuteronomy 11:19). This is about knowing your family instead of knowing your favorite television programs. Leadership is about taking up your cross daily instead of once in a blue moon. Remember, to truly live we must die to ourselves (Romans 8:13). The first ministry of a Christian man is to lead his family with conviction, humility, and by the power of the Holy Spirit. If we can't do those things we will be ineffective at everything else the Lord requires of us:

Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus. - 1 Timothy 3:12-13
But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. - 1 Timothy 5:8

Lord, let us die to the American dream and live in Christ Jesus that our wives and children may love you with all of their hearts and that others may see that the Lord is good by the testimony of a functional Christian home. The battle is not ours, but the Lords (2 Chronicles 20:15).

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Steps of the Son

I started down the narrow path the day the cost was counted
Though harder than the broader path, my path had only started
Taken by surprise the narrow path it does not widen
Now wedged between a chasm things are harder than they started
How many times I've fallen on this narrow path I tread
Pride I prized but now my eyes are focused on the end
By grace my steps have brought me to the cross of Calvary
My sin redeemed by He who taught my soul the narrow way
Content the path I walk I pray to make it through the sorrow
Toward blood stained steps of Christ, my cross I'll take and follow

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Imaginary gods

How many people do you know that claim they love god? I know out of my friends & acquaintances there is a small minority of people who completely deject a god whereas more of them would believe that god exists. Many of them even proclaim to love god.

Unfortunately for the vast majority of those who claim they love god love not the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. They love not the God who sent His son Jesus Christ. They love a god that they have fabricated from their own imaginations. I was listening to a sermon online from Pastor Tim Conway called The Hard Sayings of Jesus and some of the things he brought up that Jesus said (in the Bible) include:

- Unless you forsake all that you have you cannot be my disciple
- Why do you call me Lord Lord and do not do what I say?
- You ought not to be hearers of the word and not doers of it
- When you have a meal don't invite your rich friends, invite the poor
- Take your possessions and sell them so that you have something to give to the poor
- You'll prove to be his disciples by the fruit that you bear
- Not to store treasure on Earth, but to lay up your treasures in heaven
- You will pray, fast, and give, and not to do it like the hypocrites
- Follow him even if it requires you to hate your father and mother because of it
- If you put your hand to the plow and look back you are not worthy to be His disciple
- He said to one of his chief apostles, "Get behind me Satan!"

These sayings are so foreign to the portrait of Jesus we see painted in our pulpits. We hear about a very Jesus than that of the Holy Bible. We hear of a Jesus that:

- Gives us everything and asks absolutely nothing in return
- Asks for a simple verbal affirmation by means of salvation
- Wants to make us rich, healthy, and happy in this world
- Has commands that should be memorized but not enacted
- Speaks nothing of sin and judges nobody who professes the name of Jesus Christ

None of these sayings are explicit but are rather implicit in the sermons that the majority of American pastors spew from their mouths.

When you read the word, do you tremble at the fact that so many professing Christians are not Christians at all? That they have never been on the narrow path? That the Jesus that they believe in is not the Jesus of the Bible but a false Jesus who masters the broad path that leads to destruction. Have you not read that He separates the wheat from the tares? Have you not read that He separates His sheep from the goats? Remember the call of Christ and heed his words:

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. (Matthew 7:13-14, ESV)

God bless you friends, I pray that you take heed to the truth found in the scripture.