Monday, July 30, 2007

Accentuating the Positive...

As I was making the blogroll rounds today I read an interesting blog written by Rodney over at The Journey. Rodney has come up with a way to highlight the positive in the blogosphere. It's no secret that all one has to do to hear negativity is to turn on their television or chat with the neighbor or sadly, simply read some blogs. We're bombarded with negative communications from every side.

Join the positive discussion and link to Rodney's site via the badge code you will find at his site. Simply put it in your sidebar and post positively on someone or something every week!

There's enough people blogging about the negative aspects of life, Christianity and everything in between so let's mix it up a bit with some positive!

Sunday, July 29, 2007


Here I am alone again tonight in this old empty house...

Those are the first words to an old Alan Jackson song about going crazy after the one/s you love have left. Well, that's kind of the way I feel tonight as I write this blog. I don't want to get too mushy on you tonight but I'm missing my family terribly and they've only been gone for about 9 hours. My wife and children are with Tiff's mother and two sisters on a vacation to the beach for the next week.

It's funny, the silence you crave in moments of constant noise isn't so desirable when the noise has faded. I want to hear my children laughing or even fussing about having to brush their teeth; at this point, even that would be welcome. I want noise because noise is an indication of normalcy around our house. For the next week, it won't be normal around here. Just me and the noise I make. Yes, I may begin talking to myself just to hear some noise. :)

When they were pulling out of the driveway, my wife asked me if I was alright and like any strong man would do, I said, "Yeah, I'm fine". Honestly, it sucked watching my family leave.

So now I have a week and 1 day to find something to do with myself. Oh I'll find something to do. Actually, I have plenty to do that will keep me busy during the day, but it's the night time that gets to you, ya know?

I think the bond that we all develop as a family is Godly. I believe that God creates that bond within our hearts that when we're away from those we hold dear, it hurts. We long for their voice and their laughter but all we have until they return is the memory of those sounds. If it's true what they say, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder", I'll be so fond of them when they get back I may never let them leave again! ;-)

Friday, July 27, 2007

New blog links

I love to read blogs and have a few that I recommend for your reading in my blog roll on the right margin of my blog. All of them are there for unique reasons to myself. I've added two more today that I should have added a good while back but failed to.

Rodney Olsen- The Journey


Michael Morehart- Morehart

Stop by and join the conversation with these guys. You'll be glad you did. :)

Blog Addiction?

No way I'm 71% addicted to blogging! Is denial the first sign? ;)

How addicted are you?

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

How much do I have to change before you'll like me?

Interesting indeed how often those of us who call ourselves Christians demand a change in others before we'll let our guard down and accept people just the way they are. As I read through the Gospels, I don't recall Jesus saying to the twelve he chose; to change and then come follow him. He simply invited them to "follow him". I love the way Rob Bell put it in his book titled, "Velvet Elvis". He likens the Christian journey to that of jumping on a trampoline. "We jump and simply invite people to jump with us, to live the way of Jesus and see what happens".

The radical hope of the gospel is that if we follow Jesus, change will then happen.

Perhaps if we were more "tolerant" of others as they are, they would be more tolerant in listening to our gospel and thereby be more inclined to accept an invitation to jump with us.

What are your thoughts?

1. How are you in this area? Do you typically want to see change before you accept people or are you willing to let them be themselves and allow God to effectuate change?

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Have you ever done the Stupid?

I have...Shortly after moving to Texas City, Texas from Bandera, Texas, I changed the address on my Driver's License to reflect my new address. $11.00 and 3 weeks later, they arrived in the mail. I took my old license from my wallet and compared the new information to the old and everything was satisfactory. So, I put what I "thought" was my new license in my wallet and placed what I "thought" was my old license on my desk for discard later. Later came and I took the license that was lying on my desk and proceeded to my kitchen. You have a junk drawer in your house right? The drawer where all of the odd things end up. We do too. The scissors are in this particular drawer. I grabbed them with confidence and began cutting up my license that had previously been lying on my desk. All is well. That is until I go to the bank to cash a check and they want to see identification. Beaming with confidence, I pull out my long, black leather wallet and extract my new license. Just because I like the look of my new address, I glanced down to see it again and what I saw stopped me in my tracks. I mumbled something under my breath. It was something like, O CRAP, NO I DIDN'T! I had cut up my NEW Driver's License not my OLD Drivers License.

I felt sooo stupid! So now I have to pay another $11.00 to get another Driver's License which will take another 3 weeks! Whoever said stupidity doesn't cost, never met me. :-)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Cultural Intimacy

Depending upon whom you are asking, the question of cultural intimacy will yield a positive or negative response. Should the church or Jesus Followers be intimate with their culture? Intimate as in marked by very close association, contact, or familiarity. I think if one studies the life of Jesus they will notice a very close association with culture or the world. Ah, there's the real dirty word, the world. Have you ever noticed how many Christians insist that we are "IN" the world but not "OF" of the world? They go on to claim that if you're a friend of the world, you're an enemy of God. Could God be his own worst enemy?

I think the Scripture is clear that, "God so loved the world that he gave his only Son that whoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life." John 3:16.

Doesn't sound much like God hates the world to me. Does it to you? I hear so many preachers preach this sort of contorted doctrine as if we are to have no alliance with the world whatsoever. This may stand to reason why their ministries are failing and the only ones that are attending their meetings are those that don't have anything better to do anyway or habit simply gets the better of them.

Jesus spent much more time in the "world" arena than he did the "religious" arena. He was always mixing it up with "sinners" and avoiding the "saints". He spent so much time with the heathen that he was referred to as the "Friend of sinners". The shame of it all!

The problem herein is that too often we misunderstand the real meaning of the word, world. We carelessly define this word to mean "lost humanity". While there are certainly biblical passages that would support that definition, we must be careful not to use that definition in every instance the word is used. How is it Jesus could say in John 3:16 that God loved the world and then in 1John 2:15 "Love not the world, neither the things [that are] in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." It would appear that God is confused and really isn't sure of what our feelings toward the world should be. But we would be wrong to think that. The words are different in use and context.

In John 3:16-17, the world would represent the whole of humanity. The word in the original Greek is Kosmos, from which we derive, world. Though this word has other meanings such as ornament, decoration, adornment, i.e. the arrangement of the stars, 'the heavenly hosts', as the ornament of the heavens, in the context of John 3:16 it represents you and I and countless others like us.

In 1John 2:15, the world would represent world affairs, the aggregate of things earthly. The word here in the original Greek is also Kosmos but within the context it calls for a separate definition, "The whole circle of earthly goods, endowments riches, advantages, pleasures, etc, which although hollow and frail and fleeting, stir desire, seduce from God and are obstacles to the cause of Christ." John is saying that we must be crucified to the world and the lusts that fill it. Our hearts are not capable of holding love for God and a love for the things of this life. The things of this life are the weeds that come up and choke us.

So then where does this idea that we should be enemies of God if we are friends with the world come from? I think it comes from a lack of proper attention and willingness to search God's heart. I cringe when I hear Preachers say we musn't fellowship with the world (sinners) because what fellowship does light have with darkness?!? Are we afraid to be like Jesus? Are we afraid to love our Kosmos and participate in its life and function within its arena? Are we afraid to be like Jesus and become deeply intimate within our culture?

A quick test will determine where we are in this. Write down on a piece of paper all the names of your friends. You know, those you go to dinner with or have over to your home for dinner or would go to their home for dinner. You know, your friends. Now, how many of those friends are sinners or un-believers? If our list has more believers than non-believers, I wonder just how intimate we are with our Kosmos.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Cooperation with God

"Whatever God's dream about man may be, it seems certain it cannot come true unless man cooperates."

~Stella Terrill Mann

I love this quote because it reminds me that God and I are a team. Though God can do anything and really doesn't need my involvement, He desires my involvement. Many times we dismiss the successes in our lives or the lack thereof to the idea that "God is God and his will will be done regardless of anything else."
Perhaps the goals we have set for our lives depends very much on our cooperation with God. To work without God or against God is like swimming upstream or cutting against the grain. Both feel unnatural. We were created to work in unison with God.

Where is God trying to work in your life to bring about a dream that you have? Where are you resisting God's work? Consider how well you work with Him or against Him. It could make the difference of whether or not you see the dream accomplished!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

A favorite quote of mine...

“Isn’t it the task of the Holy Spirit to introduce some madness and intoxication into the world? Why this propensity for balance and safety? Don’t we all long for one moment of raw risk, one moment of divine madness?”

~Ron Rolheiser

Thursday, July 05, 2007


I'm walking past my kids' bathroom this morning and as I walk past, I glance in. I see my son standing at the sink with this "stuff" all over his face. He's shaving and he's 5!

Don't get alarmed, it's a "play" shaving kit that Grandma bought him some time ago. I'm going to have to teach him that there is no need to shave one's forehead. :)