Thursday, January 19, 2017
One more day before we have to for the sake of The Union, This City Upon a Hill, This Great Land of Ours called the United States of America at least pretend that we respect him even if through his words and actions he continues to disrespect us. Let us pray that his attention span increases from the 140 characters of his late-night Twitter rants to something that will reasonably allow him do his job well and run this country. We must collectively be the bigger person and support him as our president or we can all collectively put our head between our legs and kiss our butts goodbye. No we don't have to celebrate his inauguration. Yes we will hold him and the republican controlled Congress' feet to the fire at every turn. How he slipped in and won in the first place was by capitalizing on how divided the country was. The divide and conquer strategy was in full effect and on steroids in the 2016 election. So, now we must accept the 2016 election results and Donald J Trump as president and move forward to make him a one term president. I know we can make it through four years of Trump and company. I'm not so sure about eight. Remember also my fellow Americans, midterm elections are coming on November 12, 2018. We can unite and vote some of these anti-progress Congress members out of office. Then march onward and upward to the 2020 elections. We've got a lot of work to do, but it will be exciting and rewarding. The country we may save might be our own.
Monday, January 11, 2016
For me this started as a repost from @jesus.iscomingsoon on Instagram #JesusLoveWins
at https://www.instagram.com/p/4cY8NCzcFX/ . I commented on her post and I'm going off on a rant now. We Christians should condemn shacking up (cohabitation), hooking up (Netflix and chill), becoming illegitimate parents (being baby-mamas and baby-daddies rather than getting married first and raising children together) all fornication, all adultery, sexting (showing your butt, penis, tits, vag-jay-jay in a text message, email or on social media to someone other than your spouse),aborting babies that you aren't even attempting to prevent the conception of, and no-fault divorce among heterosexuals as vigorously as we condemn homosexuality. I just believe that all sexual sin is equal in the eyes of God. I believe that if being gay is wrong, and I have my questions about that because the Bible speaks about men laying with men in the manner that they lay with women. However the Bible is silent on lesbianism. l believe that people are either born gay like people are born blind (visually impaired) or with mental retardation (sorry that's not politically correct) or that straight adults and teenagers make heterosexual children gay through abuse and other inappropriateness. In either case the Christian biblical answer to that would be "you must be born again" John 3:7.
Lots of conservative blowhards say that homosexuality is the biggest threat to the institutions of marriage and family. Nothing can be further from the truth.
I support civil unions. I don't believe in the government calling it marriage though. Marriage is a sacrament from God. However I believe that the couples and the people who perform the marriages ceremonies can call it whatever they want but our government should give gay couples all the rights and privileges and impose the same responsibilities that straight married couples have.
#LGBTQ #InAllYourGettingGetSomeUnderstanding #Christianity #BibleSays #HomosexualityIsASin #FornicationIsASin #AdulteryIsASin #AllSexualSinIsEqualInTheEyesOfGod #SinIsSin #SameSexMarriage #CivilUnions #BornThisWay #MustBeBornAgain #John3and7 #FixItJesus #TheLordForgives
Thursday, August 20, 2015
Session 1 The War Revealed by Dr Tony Evans from Victory in Spiritual Warfare: field guide for battle
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
It’s a cosmic conflict of such ferocity, size, and scope that it makes all other wars
pale in comparison. This is the battle being waged in the heavenlies, and it’s a battle
God is calling you to wake up to.
This wake-up call is being issued to Christian men and women, for the vast majority
of us, though we know Christ and might have a pew reserved in church every
Sunday, are nonetheless living defeated lives. We try and fail, and then try and fail
again. No matter what we do, we can’t seem to live in the way the Bible describes
the life of the Christian.
We are plagued by anxiety, hang-ups,
compulsions, and addictions.
God has already given the Christian everything needed to live in victory. Because
of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, victory is not only possible—it’s
already been assured. His victory is our victory. All that’s left is for us to connect the
visible, physical world with the victory already given to us in the invisible, spiritual
world. Amazingly, we aren’t fighting for victory; we are fighting from victory.
That’s what this study is about—understanding and implementing the victory
of Christ through the essential pieces of spiritual armor God has given the believer
Over the next eight sessions, we will learn about all God has already secured for
the believer in Christ. We will discover together what each piece of armor is and
how to put it on. We will see that this armor is to be employed every day in real
life situations. And together, we will learn to live in the victory God has won for
us in Christ.
Psalm for the Second Day of the Week from the Jewish Prayer Book (p. 50-51). Vook, Inc.. Kindle Edition.
This is the Second Day of the Week on which the Levites in the Temple used to say:— (Psalms 48:1-14) A Song; a Psalm of the Sons of Korah. Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised, in the city of our God, in his holy mountain. Beautiful in elevation, the joy of the whole earth is mount Zion,— at the sides of the north,— the city of the great king. God hath made himself known in her palaces as a stronghold. For, lo, the kings met each other, they passed on together. They saw it; then were they amazed; they were confounded, they hasted away. Trembling took hold of them there; pangs as of a woman in travail. With an east wind thou didst break the ships of Tarshish. As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of the Lord of hosts, in the city of our God: God will establish it for ever. (Selah.) We thought of thy loving kindness, O God, in the midst of thy temple. As is thy name, O God, so is thy renown unto the ends of the earth; thy right hand is full of righteousness. Let mount Zion rejoice, let the daughters of Judah be glad, because of thy judgments. Compass ye Zion and go round about her: count the towers thereof. Mark ye well her rampart, traverse her palaces; that ye may tell a later generation, that this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.
Monday, July 27, 2015
The Most Powerful Prayer You’ll Ever Pray by Adam Houge from The 7 Most Powerful Prayers That Will Change Your Life Forever! (Kindle Locations 56-146)
It is written, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3: 16-17
When understood in the proper light this scripture has a truly profound impact on our lives. One that will transform our hearts and change our lives forever. But in order to understand it, we need to understand the most powerful and life-changing prayer you could ever pray. This prayer we are about to discuss is so important that it will always be the first in several of my prayer books. I can’t express enough the need for us to pray this. Without seeking and praying for God’s saving grace, there is no grace for us at all. God desires a relationship with us at a personal level. He is a very intimate and relational Person Who loves each and every one of us. He knows everything about us, but treasures us so much that He still wants to know us more. There is a difference between knowing things about someone, and knowing him personally and intimately. I’m sure you could think of a famous actor and say, “oh I know about him!” But then someone who is a personal friend with that actor would brag, “yeah, but I know him personally!” The person who is a good friend of the actor will know the truth about him: whether the rumors the magazines publish are true, or just made up to get readers. They’ll know everything about that person’s life, and enjoy every moment with him. Why? Because they’re friends! God works the same way. There are many things said about God, but there is only one way to know the truth about Him –through an intimate relationship with Him. God desires that friendship with you, and wants to enjoy every minute of it. He loves you! No matter where you’ve been and no matter what you’ve done, God loves you. A few of you reading this may have done something so terrible that it would lead you to think that God can’t possibly love you. But God says He still does. Can you believe Him? Can you believe that God is better than you and can love you even when you wouldn’t love yourself? Can you believe He will forgive you even when you can’t forgive yourself? You already know that a relationship with Him requires faith, and this is one of those times you need faith. Have faith that God is better than you and can love you even when you can’t love yourself. Now God does love us, but He does NOT love our sin. In order for you to be saved, God had to come down as a man and suffer a horrible and gruesome death. We read in the Bible that He was “Pierced for our transgressions.” So because we sinned He needed to be crucified. If He was not mocked, beaten, tortured, whipped, stripped naked, and crucified, neither you nor I could be saved. There would be no hope for us AT ALL! Due to our sins against God, His wrath would still abide upon us. But God is a loving God and doesn’t want to have wrath. He, as a Judge, has perfect justice. So His heart dictated that He needed to have justice on our sins, and our sins require wrath. Because God loved us, He decided to give us a way out of judgment, and yet still have justice on our sin. He chose to have that wrath laid on His own shoulders for our salvation. You need to understand how much He loves you! Even though we deserve Hell for sinning against Him, He can’t stand the thought of sending us there. He’s not a vengeful wrathful God, but perfectly loving. He made you. He formed you in your mother’s womb and sewed all your sinews. He connected all your bones and brought you forth in life. He gave you your life to love you, not to condemn you. We read in the Bible that God knows all things. He knows your heart, your frame (remember He made it), everything you’ll ever need, and everything you’ll ever aspire to be. He hasn’t only known you now that you’re alive, He’s known you since before time. Before He ever created time, He thought of you. You are not an accident! You are a purposeful well-thought, out creation of God. He’s been spending thousands of years thinking of you. How you will look, and act. How you will respond to life, and how life will respond to you. He’s been thinking of these things before the world ever spun on its axis. Before He created anything He’s been cherishing you in His heart and in His thoughts. He planned you and has always had a plan for you. God has spent so much time thinking about you and cherishing you that He treats you like His own child in His heart. If your child does something wrong, don’t you want to turn them around again? If your child committed a crime deserving of death, wouldn’t you
try to save them from it? “Maybe if they’re sorry and change their life, they won’t have to die,” you might think. What would you do if you were told someone had to die, and were given the choice to die for them? What if that person sinned against you or your children? Would you die for them? Would you give your child’s life for them? But God is so loving that even though we sin against Him, He chose to give His Son’s life to save us. He doesn’t want vengeance. He wants to give you life. Your life was His plan to begin with and it’s the reason you were born! But perfect justice must be served. Any sin we commit is deserving of death. It is an act of rebellion against God who gave us life. God knows what we deserve, and must administer perfect justice for our crimes. Even the smallest sin separates us from Him. He’s an all holy and perfect God who knows no sin. He declared from creation that anyone who sins in any way, no matter how small, is worthy of death. But He has loved you so much that He couldn’t stand the thought of living in eternity without you. Nothing would break His heart more than being without you. So He, like any loving parent, chose to stand in your place. He came down and was born as a man, and named Himself Jesus, which means “deliverer” or “savior.” He called Himself this because He wanted to save you from the penalties of your sin. Perfect justice needed to be met, and someone needed to die for your sin, so He like any loving parent chose to stand in your place. Even though we were wicked against Him, He still chose to die out of love for you. He chose to die to save you, in the hope that His death would convict you of your sins. He hopes that you might repent and live for Him as you were created to do. Remember what we said, “Maybe if they’re sorry, they won’t have to die.” This was His mindset when He sacrificed Himself for you. He wants us to be sorry for our sins, and repent. Repent means to do a complete 180 in life –to turn and go the opposite direction from the way we’re going. And this is His heart toward you. God doesn’t want you to go to Hell, He loves you! He cares so much about you! He has shown you by His sacrifice that He would rather be beaten, whipped, tortured, completely humiliated, stripped naked, and murdered on a cross than spend another moment in eternity without you. You’re so precious to Him! Don’t turn Him away, and don’t turn Him down. He has loved you, even when no one else has. How could you pass up this kind of love? No matter what your decision is now, God will always love you. Even if you hate Him, He’ll still love you. He’s perfect and can’t help but be perfectly loving. But He has perfect justice too. He doesn’t want to have wrath on us, but if we can’t be sorry for the things we’ve done and change our lives, He can’t save us. It is our own decision and not His. He gave us that decision and gave us freewill. He gave us a way out, and if we don’t take it, there is no other way to be saved from condemnation. There is no other name by which we must be saved than Jesus Christ. If we don’t take His gift, then in Judgment, God with tears in His eyes, will guide you down the path you wanted. He will love you and guide you all the way to the gates of Hell. It’s never what He wanted, but if you pass Him up today, that’s what you wanted. He wants to give you a way out and chose to die for you so you could have one. Don’t pass up this opportunity. There will never be another one. I want to encourage you to take this opportunity for grace, right now, and ask Jesus Christ to be your Lord and Savior.
Please Pray With Me, “Lord, I know I’ve sinned and I’m sorry. I’m sorry for every way I’ve ever hurt You or anyone else. God, I repent! I want to change my life! I want to be better for You. Please forgive me. God I can’t do this myself. I failed at this life You gave me the first time I tried. Please help me God. Please help me to do this right. Please give me your Holy Spirit now that I may be alive in You. Give me Your Spirit, Lord, that I can have strength to please You in all things. Create in me a new heart. I devote my life to You now. Please, Jesus, be my Lord and Savior forever. Amen.”
The Lord’s Answer, “Oh Beloved! Oh My precious baby! I’m so happy with you! I’m so proud of you! I’ve never been happier with you than right now! I am telling you the truth, there are tens of thousands of angels rejoicing before Me because of you! You have set a fire in their hearts, and they can’t help but sing and dance that I have my baby back! “This is all I ever wanted –for you to be sorry, and give your life to Me. I created you to have a relationship with you. I made heaven and earth for this reason, that I may have a place to meet with you and connect with you: My new friend. How could you not think that I love you? I’ve done all these things for you, because you mean so much to me! Now let Me mean much to you, and devote yourself wholeheartedly to Me. “Let Me be the center of your life. Let Me live in you and with you. Let Me guide you and take you by the hand. Let Me choose your path in life, because I know what will lead you to perfection. Let Me take care of you. I will take care of you! You are My baby after all! “Surrender to Me, and let Me be your Lord in everything. I will take care of you and I will save you from everything that comes your way. I promise! But be good to follow Me now, and listen to My convictions. I will speak into your heart through My Holy Spirit, so incline your ear to Him. Listen to My convictions and do the right thing. Obey His conviction! I know what is best always. So always follow Me and obey Me. “Grow in Me and grow close to Me. Serve Me and where I am you will be also. You are not serving Me if you don’t listen to Me. Be diligent to obey Me, and not your own heart. If you’re making Me your Lord, then deny your life and let Me rule over you. I have a use for you. I have a plan for you. Let me take you by the hand to fulfill it. Let Me lead you in your walk with Me. Besides, I know the way to where we’re going, not you! “I’m going to give you eternal life so you can be with Me, where I am, forever. I will do this so long as you continue in Me, and obey Me as I have commanded you.”
Sunday, July 5, 2015
,"I feel SORRY for you when they become teenagers." "Dude, you're surrounded by women." "What did you do to deserve that?"
Being a dad of four daughters (we also have one son), I hear stuff like this almost daily. And honestly, I'm the one who feels sorry for people who think this way.
Having daughters is one of the greatest joys I could imagine. We have a saying at our house that goes like this, "I love you more today than I did yesterday." Raising girls is a privilege, not a burden.
I certainly don't have it all figured out, but I have learned 15 things about raising girls these last 11 years.
1. She wants to be loved. More than she wants the stuff you can buy her or the things you can teach her, she wants you to love her. No one else on Earth can assume YOUR role as daddy. Your daughter will let you down, make huge mistakes, and maybe even turn her back to you for a season, but don't ever let her doubt your love for her. Look her in the eye and tell her you love her. Lots.
2. You have an influence on her future partner. Scary thought, but the kind of man you are to her will have a direct impact on who she chooses to marry some day. For years, our third daughter would beg me to marry her when she grew up. I had to explain that I was ALREADY married to her amazing mother. If you're doing it right, she'll want to marry someone like you one day.
3. Listen to her music. When my girls are in my car, you'll be able to catch us rocking out to the following PANDORA stations: Taylor Swift, One Direction, Cody Simpson, Kidz Bop Radio, Katy Perry, you get the point. Not stations I'd listen to on my own (with one exception -- I love Taylor Swift), but when it lights them up, it lights me up.
4. She's watching how you treat her mom. If you take one thing out of this entire list, make it this. One of the best things you can do for your daughter is to love her mom well. It's easy to be child-centered. Running from one kid ACTIVITY to another. But fight for your marriage and make it a priority. The seasons of life when I lose focus on dating Brooke (my wife) are also the same seasons when our children have more issues. I don't think that's coincidental. Love your wife, make time to date her, take her on trips, and show your kids that she is a bigger priority than they are.
5. Don't shrink back as she grows up. Our oldest is almost 11, so we haven't hit the dreaded teenage years, but I say bring them on. Dads who are further down the road than I am regret not being more emotionally engaged with their teenage daughters. It will be awkward for all of us, but I'm leaning right into it. Periods, boyfriends, shaving armpits, Snapchat, whatever it is. My girls won't know any different than their dad being every bit as engaged when they're 15 as he was when they were 5. Don't DISAPPEAR when their emotions and bodies start changing.
6. Teach her how to do a real push-up. I won't be mistaken for Billy Blanks, but we take health and wellness seriously at our house. My girls aren't wimps. They know how to do real push-ups. They play sports hard. They think "throwing like a girl" is a compliment, not an insult. They bring it. And more than the physical toughness, we're raising mentally tough girls. Like their momma. In a world where femininity gets assigned far too often to princess dresses and fairy tales, my girls are tough as nails.
7. Make memories. A friend once told me that my job is to be the Chief Memory Maker of the house. It's morbid, but I have 50-60 years left on this Earth, tops. That's not a ton of time, so I'm going to go hard and create as many memories with my girls as I possibly can. We celebrate big things like a 10-year-old trip, but we also take the little things seriously. Family movie nights on Friday nights. Big breakfast Saturdays. Hikes after church. It doesn't have to be expensive or elaborate, but it does have to be intentional. Fill up YOUR daughter's emotional journal with memories of being with her dad.
8. Teach her that it's not about her. Something amazing happens when we realize that the universe doesn't SPIN around us. We're not modeling it perfectly for our girls, but we're trying to show them that life is best lived when we give ourselves away. To serve others. To go last. To not always have to be right.
9. Show up to her EVENTS. As dads of young daughters, most of us are building CAREERS at the same time. So it's not possible every single time, but make the effort to get to her stuff. Even if it's not your favorite stuff. I hate the commercial of the dad at the daughter's dance recital who is watching a football game on his phone. I love a good football game as much as the next guy, but clap as hard for your daughter's recital as you would on your couch watching sports.
10. Proximity doesn't equal presence. I'm guilty of forgetting this often. The simple fact that you're there doesn't mean you're really there. Especially in an era of constant information and entertainment. Turn your phone off when you get home from work. Or at least put it in another room. Your daughter couldn't care less about your Twitter feed, YOUR EMAILS, your fantasy football team, or your group texts. She cares about spending time with you. Playing with you. Being with you.
11. Do her hair and nails. Brooke does this 99 times out of 100, but I make it a point to tell all my girls that daddy can make a killer ponytail. And I can paint their nails like a champ. Heck, they've painted mine on many occasions as well. Show her that a man can be gentle.
12. Date her. I wish I could say I do this consistently, but even once every few months is better than not at all. Dating your daughter is critical to showing her how a man should treat a woman. Call me old school, but on my dates with my girls, I OPEN the doors, pay the bills, look them in the eye, and make them feel like a million bucks. This doesn't have to cost a ton of money. A walk around the block. A short bike ride. A trip to the ice cream store. Doesn't have to be fancy, but again, it must be intentional.
13. Her heart is more beautiful than her appearance. Guess what, dad? It's your job to tell your daughter, and then remind her a million times, that what's on the inside of her is what will make her go far in life. The heart is how we talk about it at our house, but it can be her character, her self-worth, her core. Raising girls in this sensual world isn't easy, but they don't have to settle for the belief that to be pretty means you must fit into a size zero or show almost every piece of your skin when you walk into a room.
14. Don't blink. Kenny Chesney was right. She calls you daddy. Enjoy that role -- it flies by.
15. Will you forgive me? I forget 1-14 more than I would like to admit. I'm doing my best. You are too. But when I blow it, when I hurt her feelings, and when my intentions were better than my actions, I'm learning to ask her for forgiveness. Not a simple apology, but a sincere plea for forgiveness. Model being a dad who gets down on her level and admits that you don't have it all together. She'll forgive you for that.
Dads, YOUR role is a precious one. Love your daughters well.