Sunday, February 16, 2014
Sunday, July 14, 2013
It has been some time since I have posted. The reason being is God has chosen to challenge me and my family in the way of changes. Life changes. So, as it happens, I have a moment to post this. It isn’t much, but it is something. It’s a lists of lists. Everybody likes those. Enjoy.
As we ask for God's help in prayer, we must not be careless with any of our words. What we say is powerful in such a vulnerable situation, and we should tread carefully. So here are five things we must avoid when preaching a funeral.
…I often find myself messing up common phrases. When I’m unsure, I do a quick Google search to make sure that what I’m writing is actually what I’m trying to say. This inspired me to come up with a list of common phrases that people frequently get wrong. Some of them aren’t completely our fault because the incorrect way of saying them has actually become the “norm”. But we’re still wrong.
Whether it is best to manuscript or to outline your sermon is an ongoing conversation. Everyone is different. Driscoll goes up with post-it notes, Piper takes a manuscript. Figuring out which is right for you takes time and experimentation.
Sunday, May 5, 2013
I had a dream last night that was rather different. I got off some bus or train and stepped into some sort of rally. In my dream where I got off, was my home town that I hadn’t been to in quite some time. The rally was some sort of gay pride celebration. I just wanted to get through the crowd to a restaurant that I patronized often. I was stopped by a couple of the participants and they asked, with some sort of accent, if I was going to the restaurant and if it was a “gay” restaurant. I said, as far as I knew, it wasn’t. I finally make it into the restaurant and the owner, how I knew that I don’t know, I asked if I was harassed outside by coming in? I said not really. The owner then went on to say that we should counter rally and “defend God”. I said this was a mistake in thinking.
What do I mean by that? As far as I can tell, the Bible never asks us as Christians to “defend God”. God doesn’t need defending. He’s God! What kind of God would He be if He needed Man to defend Him? In fact, that would be very vain and sinful of us to do so. Now, that is not to say that our FAITH doesn’t need to be defended. Let’s look at a few examples in Scripture:
Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.
(Jud 1:3 ESV)
After some days Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish, and he sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. And as he reasoned about righteousness and self-control and the coming judgment, Felix was alarmed and said, "Go away for the present. When I get an opportunity I will summon you."
(Acts 24:24-25 ESV)
And he entered the synagogue and for three months spoke boldly, reasoning and persuading them about the kingdom of God. But when some became stubborn and continued in unbelief, speaking evil of the Way before the congregation, he withdrew from them and took the disciples with him, reasoning daily in the hall of Tyrannus.
(Acts 19:8-9 ESV)
Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God.
(Philippians 1:27-28 ESV)
As you can see in these examples, it is the FAITH we are to defend. The “why we believe” in God, not God Himself. This needs to be clear not only in our own minds but in the presentation to the unbeliever as well.
|Philippians 4:6-7“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” |
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