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Archive for August, 2008

Well, here’s some random thoughts from this past week’s message that I keep running back to and thought I’d share them with you. We are going through a series we’re calling “WWJS”. What would Jesus say to us as a church and as Christians by looking at his teachings mostly in the book of Matthew.

Now this week we were talking about submission and something interesting jumped out at me. Jesus would have made himself a fine ministry with thousands of followers if He just dropped the submission thing.

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As I have been having my own little battle of stress, I came across a verse that has been a staple for me during this season. As many of you know, we have been seeking God’s will for the Christian bookstore we opened several years back. It is a needed ministry here in our little town but my heart is not there anymore. My heart is with my family time and the ministry at our church. I can see that our business is struggling from my lack of vision and don’t know what to do about it.

At the same time, I can see a lot that God is doing to prove He is moving. There are two lovely ladies considering buying the store. I believe they are the very vision and ministry hearts that will save the store but we are all seeing where God’s provision is coming from. Other encouragements have been there as well; a $100 donation from a stranger to our store, a staff member donating one week’s pay back to the store, a local church thinking to supporting the store as a mission project, help from family, prayers of many, and words of encouragement from customers. There are many signs that put evidence to God being in control. None the less, my natural mindset is to “run the numbers” and to find the plan to make it all work. This takes sleep away. This takes nights focused on my family away. This takes God’s peace away from me.

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I have to admit I was a little leery of this format of Pastor Warren interviewing both candidates in a church. I’m not as big about the separation of church and state as some others, maybe more than some others but it was just so foreign, I didn’t know what to think. Over all, it went a lot better than I thought it might and I enjoyed it a great deal.

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Pet Peeve

I wondered into a Kroger’s today in my home town to get the makings of my not so famous monster sub sandwich for dinner. My wife was kind enough to drop me off at the front door and circle the parking lot to amuse our daughter. Let’s just say, thank God that we did.

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I just watched Steven Curtis Chapman and his family last night on Larry King. They were there to speak about their journey of faith through the tragic loss of their little girl Maria. Maria was killed at the end of May when she was running to meet her brother who was pulling into the driveway. He did not see her and she was struck by the car and killed.

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I want to put out an invite to you if you have any interest on some of the topics I babble about. I want to invite you to check out the discussion boards of Revolution. I have no affiliation with the Revolution church. A matter of fact, I agree with some of their stands, not of their others, and have never been to any of their churches.

However, hardly any one on this discussion board has any affiliation with Revolution. It is just different people from different areas talking about all kinds of issues. When it comes to labels, we are a full house (Conservative, liberals, homosexual, straight, Christians, seekers, and the like). While we do have are occasional goof, overall, this is the one place I have found were you can talk through struggles and differences in love without the muck and mire of everywhere else. I have been part of this community for a year and a half now and have been blessed by my friends there.

If anyone from Rev is reading this, know this…I am in your debt. I am thankful for all the discussion, instruction, and love that I have found there as one of the token conservatives. Many of you have become vital friends and mentors to me and I pray I have blessed you in some meager way. Thank you my friends……

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The Jedi Error is a concept to me for the last couple years, ever since my visit to Emergent’s Summer Institute. While it originally was a sermon, I also turned it into a blog. You can read more about it there but the basic principle is taking one of the positive elements of Emergent, having conversations, and calling to the ultra conservatives that they could learn from this. Often, the ultra conservative church is not the best at letting people struggle, doubt, and ask questions without judgement. I believe the Word of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit (not one or the other) are strong enough to handle our struggles so we don’t need to be scared to enter into the muck together. Struggle through any situation in the light of the Word and you will be a more loving and stronger person for it.

OK, that said, I have an update on this topic that saddens me. As I continue to talk with people within the Emergent community, read writings of leading voices in the Emergent community, and study more of the latest books and events of Emergent, I must say it appears that Emergent is losing the art of the one main thing I loved about them. The conversation circle appears to be smaller and smaller to only include people that agree with them and becoming more hostile to those who do not.

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