Monday, November 30, 2009
The man deeply felt his conversion. Dr. Lloyd-Jones never got over the Lord’s mercy to him in saving him and this was clear in his preaching.
The underlining issue behind his preaching was the glory of God. Behind all of his preaching the main point and main issue was always that God be glorified and exalted. He never treated the Lord casually.
He had the presence of a man who dwelt with the Lord in prayer. When he preached, he sincerely preached as a man that had consistently lingered truly humbly before the Lord and had dwelt on the Truth of God in Scripture. He brought those meditations and that posture to the people.
As a preacher, I sometimes wonder what people will say about me, not that I expect anyone to ask! There is also the challenge of the last observation: He had the presence of a man who dwelt with the Lord in prayer.
Friday, November 27, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
We have every little inconsequential thing, Nintendo 64s and homepages and cell phones, but not one important thing to believe in. What do you have left that will persuade us? One thing: the story. We are a story people. We know narratives, not ideas. Our surrogate parents were the TV and the VCR, and we can spew out entertainment trivia at the drop of a hat.... You're wondering why we're so self-destructive, but we're looking for the one story with staying power, the destruction and redemption of our own lives. That's to your advantage: You Christians have the best redemption story on the market.
My own anecdotal feeling is that people today are more interested in whether faith works that whether it is true. It isn't that truth doesn't matter, but that a series of propositions and proofs simply doesn't cut it with today's post-modern thinker. They want the story, and they want the whole story not just the success story.
God is constantly writing our story, but he doesn't send us the next chapter to read in advance. Instead we all read backwards–finding the meaning in our stories as we read what God has already written.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
The key principle of the book I guess is summed up in the concept of collaboration with God. Jesus only did what he saw the Father already doing (John 5), and we are to follow his pattern. Richardson argues that our focus becomes listening to the Holy Spirit’s direction and leading as he guides us to people in whose lives he is already at work. We then play our part, whatever part that is, at his prompting and leaving the rest to him.
But maybe one of the most challenging aspects of the book focusses on the big story being good news about the kingdom more than it is good news about the afterlife. So much of our ols-tyle outreach has been focused on asking the question: “If you were to die tonight and stand before God…” But are today’s people interested in the afterlife or are they interested in the present? Making life work now is a more pressing issue than what to do with eternity, no matter how important we think the later should be!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Friday, November 13, 2009
We have a dream of a church where everyone counts, where everyone is appreciated, where everyone is valued, not because of who they are down here, but because of who they are up there.
One could go on multiplying similar sites. The question I'm asking myself is what kind of church do I dream about? And if I have a dream, and I do, then how do I translate that into a vision and then a reality?
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
It is possible to emphasize a spiritual truth, value, virtue, or gift, yet miss Christ . . . who is the embodiment and incarnation of all spiritual truth, values, virtues, and gifts.
The meaning of Christianity does not come from allegiance to complex theological doctrines, but a passionate love for a way of living in the world that revolves around following Jesus, who taught that love is what makes life a success . . . not wealth or health or anything else: but love. And God is love.
If Jesus could rise from the dead, we can at least rise from our bed, get off our couches and pews, and respond to the Lord’s resurrection life within us, joining Jesus in what he’s up to in the world.
Christians don’t follow Christianity; Christians follow Christ.
Christians don’t preach themselves; Christians proclaim Christ.
Christians don’t point people to core values; Christians point people to the cross.
Christians don’t preach about Christ: Christians preach Christ.
As Steven Curtis-Chapman is singing at the moment from my iTunes library "Jesus is life, yes he is!"
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
– When excuses are made about the way things are instead of embracing a willingness to roll up the sleeves and fix the problem.
– When the church becomes content with merely receiving people that come rather than actually going out and finding them…in other words, they lose their passion for evangelism!
– The leadership begins to settle for the natural rather than rely on the supernatural.– Scripture isn’t central in every decision that is made!
– The church is no longer willing to take steps of faith because “there is just too much to lose.”
– When the leaders/staff refuse to go the extra mile in leading and serving because of how “inconvenient” doing so would be.
At times you may feel so worn out and stressed that you are not sure you can take another step. you may seem to spend all you time running from crisis to crisis and to be constantly giving your time and energy to others. Your Lord wants to renew your strength and enable you to enjoy the abundant life He intends for you. The key is to wait upon Him to do so.
I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.Psalm 121
Monday, November 09, 2009
Saturday, November 07, 2009
tell application "iSync"
if last sync is less than ((current date) - 3600) then
repeat while (syncing is true)
tell application "iSync" to quit
say "synchronisation is now complete. Have a good day" using "Zarvox"
You can add a line that hides isync if you want, but it's not that important.
Friday, November 06, 2009
Christ will lead you into many situations that will seem impossible, but don’t try to avoid them. Stay in the middle of them, for that is where you will experience God. The key difference between what appears to be impossible to us and what is actually possible is a word from our Master! Faith accepts His divine command and steps out in a direction that only God can complete. If you only attempt things that you know are possible with the visible resources you possess, those around you will not see God at work. You will be the one who receives the credit for a job well done, but God will have no part in it.
What strikes me in this devotional is that too often we work within the limits of our resources. We let budgets and finances dictate the vision instead of the other way around. I remember an old treasurer we had in the first church of which I was a member. whenever anyone asked if we could afford to do something his reply was always the same, "If you give, we can do it." Now at first thought that sounds rather narrow, but there is something of Blackaby's point in there too. Because if we believe that God is calling us to a particular ministry, then why would we doubt that he would provide the resources, and that he might call on us to be the providers of the resources needed.
Maybe the point of the feeding of the 5,000 (the subject for this devotional) for us today is that we need to put all our available resources into God's hands and let him do the miracle of multiplication.
Now I wonder where that train of thought is heading?
Thursday, November 05, 2009
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Monday, November 02, 2009
I can't remember how many names are on that memorial, even though I read them every year for seven years. For what would have been a very small village at the name it seemed like a lot.
Now we're in Upminster and I wandered up to the memorial in the town yesterday to have a look. I'd been searching the internet to see what I could find, but there was very little information. I don't know how big Upminster was during either conflict, but the list of names runs to 207. 66 from the first war and 141 from the second.
My view of war will not change, but just because I will always argue against armed solutions does not mean that I do not have the utmost respect for everyone named on this memorial and all the memorials up and down the country.
Sunday, November 01, 2009
Later in the afternoon Anne and I took a walk up into the town centre. It was fairly quite with only a few shops open, but that could easily begin to change if the local department store deems their experiment a success. And at least by asking the question now we are thinking ahead rather than playing catch up. I even saw an empty shop, but that might even be stretching my crazy mind a little too far!