Thursday, June 4, 2009

Jesus and the internet

I am once again shocked at the callousness of my heart. During my prayer time this morning God was merciful enough to once again reveal to me in a new way, the idols I bow down to daily. He did it with a simple question. Would you be more upset if your internet went down for three days or if you left your Bible at church and could not read it for three days? The answer reveals what I have more affection for. The truth is, being without the internet would bother and has bothered me more. I can remember at times being so angry as to want to shout profanities because my access to the internet was not functioning. Yet I can go days without reading my Bible and sometimes not even realize it. This reveals what I love more. I check email and facebook all day long but rarely remember what I read in God's word that morning. I have "exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things." (Rom 1:23) I have "exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served creature rather than Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen" (Rom 1:25) I recently found myself more aghast at the Braves cutting a pitcher than at the sin and idolatry I have allowed and desired in the life that God has given me. Where is my love for Christ? Tied up in the internet and sports and a great many other trivial things. "No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other." Matthew 6:24

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

What a Wife!

As I am nearing the end of this semester one word comes to mind. Fatigue. I don't think I even fully realize how exhausted I am yet. For weeks now I have been simply pushing myself to finish the things that needed to be accomplished. But with this post I want to say with all I have "Thank You" to my wife. She has been unbelievably supportive and understanding as the demands of school have limited our already little time together. Thank you baby for loving me through this and being so understanding as the demands of school have seemingly torn me away. I love you dearly and look forward to much more time together. You are an amazing woman that I can't believe I get to be with everyday. It is always a thrill to look beside me and see your stunning beauty. But nothing can compare to the beauty that God is working in you. This is one magnificent journey we are on and I love to see Him at work in and through you. You are the best wife a man could ask for. I love you dearly! Proverbs 31:10-12

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


Is your heart longing for something more today? Do you feel an unsettling or a restlessness? Are their some unexplained anxieties on your heart? Or are their some perfectly explainable anxieties? Is there some sort of suffering that is causing heartache? I know for myself that the answer to all these questions is a resounding yes. There seems to be a longing within me for something deeper and something eternally satisfying. I have come to the wells of the world only to find them drying out very quickly. I have been looking to many things recently to act as my "functional savior." That is, I long for something to satisfy me and leave me satisfied only to walk away and five minutes later feel the pain of hunger once again. This is true especially of food. I love food even to the point that I find happiness in it and long for it not for its practical function but for its comfort. The same can be said of every human on the planet though the object may differ. For example your "functional savior" could be television, sports, shopping, cars, movies, entertainment, or even yourself. But we all struggle with, when we are hurting, looking to the things of this world to satisfy the ache. While reading this morning the Holy Spirit impressed upon me that when I find myself longing for something to act as a functional savior I must abandon it and seek my true Savior. The best way to do this is by fasting. In Matthew 4:1-4 Jesus is led to the wilderness by the Holy Spirit to endure a time of testing and tempting by Satan. (Notice He was led there by God! vs 1) But before the tempting began He spent forty days fasting. He spent forty days abandoning anything that would stray His heart from His Father. Then when the enemy came He was ready. Was He pain free? NO! the Bible explicitly says He was hungry. He had not eaten in forty days. That had to physically hurt. The first thing Satan tempted Him with was food. He told him to just turn the stones to bread. That was small change to God. It was nothing. Yet Jesus would not do it. Why not? "Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of God." What was Jesus saying? God was his sustainer not food. Jesus knew that it was the very words of God that gave Him life. The is echoed in the confession of Peter to Jesus "Where else will we go Lord for you have the words of life." This should be our confession to God. If there is something in your life that has captivated your attention more than Jesus then fast. Fast from that object whatever it may be. If it's food then fast from food. Tv then fast. Shopping then fast. Spend time away from whatever is controlling you and spend that time when the one who sustains you, and you will know what Jesus meant when he quoted, "Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word the comes from the mouth of the Lord." Jesus' words bring life. Let us draw near to our God and read the words life as He speaks to us through the Bible.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hope and Change, God in politics

We have just finished the inauguration of new president of the United States and there are many who think it will be the beginning of a new era or the beginning of the end. I find it rather comical on one hand that we place so much in the hands of one man and yet painfully brokenhearted on the other that we have lost sight of God as Sovereign. Psalm 24:1 reads "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein." There is no doubt that God has given certain authority to men but only in so far as they accomplish His will. (Romans 13:1) There are many whose whole life is politics. That is their joy (or depression) and life spring forth from what happens in Washington. There are those who look to government to be their "savior." There are those who would just as soon the government would stay out of their life so that they may accomplish what they desire. All of these positions have a root flaw. They are placing their hope in something or someone other than Christ. For many, they place their hope in the government to rescue them. For others, they place their hope in themselves and the American people to rescue them. The fundamental truth here is that it is not government nor ourselves that is in control and can offer hope and change. Only Christ. Christ offers hope not from tribulation or recessions but in Himself. "He Himself is our peace." Ephesians 2:14. The hope we have is an eternal joy in the Person of Christ that leads to our changing to be more like Him that HE would be glorified. The more we know of the God that rules and owns this world the more joy we find. When we are satisfied with drinking from the fountain of God then He will no doubt be glorified(be made known for who He really is). That is our hope. Christ Jesus and no other. Do not be sucked into the political game and hateful speech that fills the airwaves between the parties, but rather be filled with the Spirit. Know that God is sovereign and all things happen by either His ordaining or allowance. Do not put your hope in any earthly thing (including yourself) for this is idolatry. Rather set your minds on the Word of God and know Him. For there we find our hope. There we find change. Not freedom from tribulation but eternal joy that is springing up from the fountain of God who is Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Nehemiah 1; Ezra 9:4-9

As I read this morning of a people who were repenting in the sight of God it is clear that we, in this time, do not have a clear understanding of the holiness of God. (I include myself among the foremost.) We have no fear of God nor a knowledge that we should fear Him. Even when we are convicted our prayers prove weak and halfhearted, as if to say we are more sorry that we can not get away with with doing what we desire. We have no idea to whom we are praying. If we did we would, with these men, fall on our faces and weep aloud at the evil we practice daily. We have so limited our view of God, that we see Him only as loving and gracious. While He is absolutely those things, His love and grace are cheapened if not seen in light of His holiness and justice. If we choose to never observe the wrath of God how then will we know from what we have been set free. God is not a box of chocolates that we may choose the pieces we like and then discard the rest. In so doing we cheat ourselves out of the joy of seeing His glory. Beware of those who seek to tell you only of God's love and goodness with no mention of His holiness and justice. That is a path to pride as we would seemingly see ourselves worthy of His love and mercy. Romans 1:18-32 gives a description of mankind that is not so flattering. It shows that man is deserving of God's wrath and it is because of this that Romans 5:8 is so sweet. "For while we were yet sinners Christ died for us." God does not love me because I am worthy but because He is glorious. It is to this God, the God of justice wrath and holiness alongside love and grace, that we pray. This alone should cause us to forever have a repentant heart.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The Joy of Fatherhood

There is nothing that will change your life quite like having a child. I thought I was ready for this until my son was born. Everyone tells you that your life changes and that you have no idea what you will feel for your child and all of it sounded rather cliche to me and then I saw him. I heard that first cry and held his little frame in my arms and the tears flowed. It was true. All that I had heard was true. There were and are no words available in any language that can begin to describe what you feel and the love that you have for that child. I never thought it would dissipate but I had no idea it would become even stronger over the next six months. Yet it has. This morning I went to get my son out of his crib and just as with every morning he looked up at me and had the biggest smile on his face. Yet this time I experienced a truth of God that I have known intellectually for some time but this morning I felt it in my heart. As I looked at my son who was beaming up at me I thought of what it must be like for God when we beam up at Him not because of something He did or something He has, but simply because He is there. Do I truly delight in Him? Do I look into His face each morning and smile as big as I can just because He is there or do I start each day complaining because I have to get up and get to work? It is strange the things you learn from those who yet can speak. This morning God used my six month old son to teach me that a love for God culminates in a desire for Him. Do you smile at God each morning or run your laundry list of wants or worse yet not even acknowledge the fact that He is there to wake you up to Himself?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Hideously, Beautiful Cross of Christ

"But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of Christ by which the world has been crucified to me and I to the world." - Galatians 6:14

Let us not boast in our "righteous" accomplishments, but rather in the cross through which we are empowered to obey. Any good or righteous act done by a believer is done through the empowerment of the living Christ. By His death on the cross we have been set free from the curse of the law. What then is the curse of the law? The curse of the law is the condemning power of the law for those outside of Christ. For those that do not know Christ and have not been redeemed from their sin by His death and resurrection, the law stands as their judge to condemn them to eternal life in Hell. "For there is none righteous not even one." There is no one that does good, and no one that seeks God. There is no one who can keep the law in all points not even the most zealous. So what then, are we left on our own to toil on this earth and then die only to have eternal torment as our future with no hope of escape. No! "For while we were yet sinners Christ died for us." We can be free from the curse of the law through Christ's death. How? He led a sinless life, a life that kept all of the law from birth to death. He was indeed sinless. Yet before the earth was formed God chose that He should die a murderous death as sacrifice for sinful people (all people) by pouring out His wrath and judgment of sin on Jesus, that we may experience not condemnation but life. It was and remains His good pleasure to show us mercy by placing His justice on Christ. We are the ones who failed and chose to fail. We are the ones who found satisfaction and pleasure in everything else except that which is supremely valuable, Jesus. He decided to show us mercy not because we are so great but because He is so gracious. Not because we are so lovable but because He is so loving. In light of this we who are believers should boast in nothing except the cross. Because through the cross we have been crucified to the pleasure of this world that would lure us away from our Treasure, Jesus. For those of us who do not believe, what would hinder your heart from experiencing the joy knowing God? Boast not in your "good" deeds but in His goodness.