Wednesday, September 30, 2009

This is powerful.

I wonder if the church would consider adoption more if we were simply wiser with our money?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Impossibility

Sometimes things I read are too familiar for me to interpret them in the right manner. I was reminded during our family huddle tonight as we were reading the Gospel of Mark that:

Changing the weather is impossible.

Halting chronic illness with your coat is impossible.

Restarting the heart of a dead kid is impossible.

Giving sight to a 35-year-old blind Dad is impossible.

Except for Jesus.


Jesus looked at them and said, “With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” --- Mark 10:27

Three things

1. Mrs. Underdog had a complaint about a post from last week. She wasn't sure that I should have posted the video clip with Will Farrell about sympathy for the insurance companies. I thought it was funny, but I am open to input from others. Anybody else think it was unwise?

2. My thoughts about God and life have changed as I have meditated on the simple fact that God had no beginning.

3. My friend and Commenter Numero Uno on this blog, Aaron went to the Desiring God conference this last weekend. The theme of the conference was John Calvin and his influence. As I have started to study John Calvin and the Reformation in more detail and see the current state of the church in America, I wonder if we are in desparate need of a second reformation. I will probably write a longer post on this later this week.

Friday, September 25, 2009

A microcosm of our school


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Somebody's grandma....

An elderly Florida lady did her shopping and, upon returning to her car, found four males in the act of leaving with her vehicle. She dropped her shopping bags and drew her handgun, proceeding to scream at the top of her voice, "I have a gun, and I know how to use it! Get out of the car!"

The four men didn't wait for a second invitation. They got out and ran like mad.
The lady, somewhat shaken, then proceeded to load her shopping bags into the back of the car and got into the driver's seat.

She was so shaken that she could not get her key into the ignition. She tried and tried, and then it dawned on her why...For the same reason she did not understand why there was a football, a Frisbee and two 12 packs in the front seat...

A few minutes later, she found her own car parked four or five spaces farther down.

She loaded her bags into the car and drove to the police station to report her mistake. The sergeant to whom she told the story couldn't stop laughing.

He pointed to the other end of the counter, where four pale men were reporting a car jacking by a mad, elderly woman described as white, less than five feet tall, glasses, curly white hair and carrying a large handgun.

No charges were filed.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A Necessary Public Service Announcement

All along I thought that I would get the short end of the healthcare stick. But one unintended victim that I overlooked was the insurance companies.

Mr. Big Bucks Insurance Guy Man, I guess I owe you an apology.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Three things

1. I am doing a lot of reading about great saints from the Reformation. One of the questions that this has raised for me concerns the almost total lack of suffering in the American church. More personally, the fact that I suffer little for the gospel. I think that all too often, I confuse the idea of suffering with life being difficult. But life is difficult for everyone, Christian and not. And I just wonder if I am missing something important....

2. In my continuing analysis of the music we sing on Sundays, yesterday we sang "And surely goodness and mercy will follow me...". And I couldn't stop thinking about my shadow. My shadow follows me wherever I go, whether I see it and recognize it or not. So it is with God's goodness and mercy.

3. With the opening of the new Cowboys stadium here in Dallas (kindly referred to as the Death Star), the media was in a tizzy. And I thought about the Roman Coleseum and the greeting that it must have received upon its opening. And you look at it now and although it is still big, it is well on its journey to becoming dust. And its architects are long forgotten. And so the Cowboys Stadium will one day be obsolete.....

....but I would still like to get a glimpse at that big HDTV that hangs over the field.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A little CS Lewis for you....

"We all serve God inevitably, but it makes a great difference whether you serve like Judas or serve like John." --- (Problem of Pain chapter 7, Anthology, p 910, cf. p 80)

Friday, September 18, 2009

The finish line

Oh, the sweet victory of the saint who finishes well and runs into the arms of a pleased Saviour. I am ever hopeful that my funeral is full of joy and hope and many followers of the Risen Lord. That, mixed with the tears of those that will soon join me with Christ, their is laughter that can only come from those that have been redeemed. I thank God for songs like this one and the portrait of grace that emerges from Mrs. Graham's life and death.

Fernando Ortega - "Give Me Jesus" from Adamson.TV on Vimeo.

*This reminded me of a quote from CS Lewis that said that our first words as we cross over to our eternal home will be....."Of course."

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A small prayer

Heavenly Father,

I read this quote this morning from Pastor John: 'On tactfulness: "There is a big difference between saying, 'Your foot is too big for this shoe" and 'This shoe is too small for your foot.'"

Please let me be more tactful and encouraging as a Husband and Dad.

Amen.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Quote

"The world’s idea that everyone, from childhood up, should be able at all times to succeed in measurable ways, and that it is a great disgrace not to, hangs over the Christian community like a pall of acrid smoke.”

--J.I. Packer, A Passion for Faithfulness: Wisdom From the Book of Nehemiah, p. 206.

Friday, September 11, 2009

There is a "Lucy" in every group.



Is it you?

Troublemaker question

We sang this lyric in church last week:

Before the Cross, I humbly bow,
I place my trust in the Saviour.

Should we bow to anything but God (Exodus 20:4-5)?

Does this turn the Cross into an object of worship?

Pretension

There was at one time a lot of talk in Christian circles about the need for "authenticity". I never really got a good definition from anywhere for authenticity, but I suspect that my self-proclaimed idiocy might qualify as authentic.

And although I am not sure what authenticity is, I have started to see the opposite in a lot of different venues: pretension. Pretentious-ness. Now, this is a big word and I am far too simple minded to know the definition off the top of my head (the dictionary says that it means characterized by assumption of dignity or importance or making an exaggerated outward show; ostentatious). But I think that I know it when I see it.

I find that pretension is most prevalent in men in a business setting. I was at a networking event last night that was attended by the best and brightest entrepreneurial minds and the money guys. (I was the exception.) And as I did my best to mingle, I found that most of the conversation was barely veiled bragging. The big deal that they just closed for a billion dollars with Mega-Corp. The vacation they just took when they rode the Loch Ness Monster. The new car, house, girl, etc that was simply better then yours.

And as I listened, I began to formulate in my mind what super (self) important stuff I could bring to the conversation. I got infected with the desire to be bigger and better and more significant. The true things I know about myself did not seem appropriate or impressive. And I knew that nothing I could say would survive the next guy's comments about himself.

As I was driving home I was reminded of these verses from a guy that could have boasted a lot, but chose not to:

God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.” I Corinthians 1:28-31

That's all for now.

Soli Deo Gloria.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Right between the eyes

This quote was a both a threat and a joy. I hope it hits you the same way it did me....

. . . whereas to the Puritans communion with God was a great thing, to evangelicals today it is a comparatively small thing. The Puritans were concerned about communion with God in a way that we are not. The measure of our unconcern is the little that we say about it. When Christians meet, they talk to each other about their Christian work and Christian interests, their Christian acquaintances, the state of the churches, and the problems of theology—but rarely of their daily experience of God. Modern Christian books and magazines contain much about Christian doctrine, Christian standards, problems of Christian conduct, techniques of Christian service—but little about the inner realities of fellowship with God. Our sermons contain much sound doctrine—but little relating to the converse between the soul and the Saviour. We do not spend much time, alone or together, in dwelling on the wonder of the fact that God and sinners have communion at all; no, we just take that for granted, and give our minds to other matters. Thus we make it plain that communion with God is a small thing to us. But how different were the Puritans! The whole aim of their ‘practical and experimental’ preaching and writing was to explore the reaches of the doctrine and practice of man’s communion with God.

JI Packer, A Quest for Godliness, p. 215 (chapter 12).

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

That's all I have to say about that.

According to the laws of aerodynamics, the bumblebee can't fly. But the bumblebee doesn't know that. So it flies.

The Looming Spectre of the Bathtub

I have a lot of kids.

And with the number of kids that I have, we have a proportional number of what I like to call hissy fits. For the sake of clarity, a hissy fits is a burst of energy that spontaneously erupts from one who lacks self-control. Commons symptoms that accompany a full fledged hissy fit are kicking, screaming, "bad attitude", grunting, moaning, crying, sorrow, and diarrhea. Okay, not diarrhea usually, but when we have an F5 on our hands, anything is possible.

In our family, when one chooses to initiate a hissy fit, they get to sit in the bathtub until they are ready to repent. The bathtub is ideal for several reasons. First, not even a full scale kicking, hitting, head butting (yeah, I know, but it only happens once), toddler can damage the inside of a bathtub. Second, our house has three evenly distributed bathtubs, providing easy access and room for multiple, concurrent hissy fitters. Third, sitting in a dry bathtub is ridiculous and the hissy fitter quickly understand that their position is completely absurd, hastening the end of the fit.

With the beginning of our school yesterday, though, I felt the presence of the bathtub more fully. Things did not always go the way that I wanted them to go. The children did not do everything that I wanted them to do. In short, the universe shifted and did not revolve around me. I think that this is probably true in general, but the occasional reminders affirm that I lack gravity.

So I had hissy fits.

Not the out of control, kicking F5 type of fit. But the subtle, internal hissy fit that cost me joy and led me to question whether the Lord really had my best interests at heart: Lord, do you really think that giving me six children was wise? The kind of hissy fit that begins with a tightening in my chest and ends with me yelling at someone as they threaten the comfort I think I deserve.

And so, this morning, my Heavenly Father put me in the Proverbial bathtub:

A soft answer turns away wrath,but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

Good sense makes one slow to anger,and it is his glory to overlook an offense. Proverbs 19:11

A man of wrath stirs up strife,and one given to anger causes much transgression. Proverbs 29:22

I think I am done now. Can I please get out of the bathtub?

Soli Deo Gloria.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Token Holiday post

"Fear and worry are not mere emotions; they are expressions of what we hold dear. They reveal the loyalties of our hearts. If we know Christ and have affirmed our allegiance to Him, worry is a sign that we are trying to have it both ways....Worry, therefore, is not simply an emotion that erodes our quality of life or a pain to be alleviated. It is a misdirected love that should be confessed. It is trying to manage our world apart from God. It is making life about our needs, desires and wants."

- Ed Welch, Running Scared, pp. 161 & 163

Friday, September 4, 2009

Three things

1. I am amazed at the furor over the planned Obama speech to kids. A couple of random thoughts: First, doesn't the most powerful man on the planet have better things to do than talk to kids about staying in school? Second, if kids are in a public school, aren't they being impacted by the things the government wants them to learn anyway (ie. evolution)? Just thinking out loud....

2. I was in a restaurant recently where they had classical music in surround sound.....in the bathroom. It was nice and all, but trying to create ambiance in the potty is probably overkill.

3. I am starting to see the slow creep of inclusiveness sneaking into the church-at-large and it really bothers me. There are certain principles/standards that the Bible sets forth that are simply not negotiable. If one does not adhere to the clearly articulated biblical perspective on a particular issue, should that person claim to be a part of the church? If you are in the army and your Master Sargent commands you to march and you decide to spin around in circles, you will not be in the army for long. There are orthodox truths that simply are not negotiable. Does this make me sound like a jerk? Probably.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

That's all I have to say about that.

Celebrity is not a virtue.

Thank you.