Categories
Christianity

Fast Wrap up…

It took me a bit to get to an internet connection to close this off but I think this fast has been great for me.  I realized that my relationship with God was revolving around my calling to minister, which is not entirely healthy.  I read the Bible and prayed for the sake of ministry and not simply to know God himself and how to live a life full of the Holy Spirit. 

     I think it goes hand in hand with what my friend told me about the tree. (See fast day 2)  I need to have my own roots deep before I am concerned about blooming.  It will definitely be take a conscious effort but it is something I need to do.

Categories
Politics

FOXNews.com – Bringing Back the Draft – FOX Fan – Speak Out

I am sorry but I have to say something.  Wasn’t it the democrats claiming if Bush is elected he will bring back the draft?  Is the draft something we really want to use a leverage to keep from going to war?  Congress is the only ones who can delcare war why don’t they bone up and take a stand if they feel things are not right.

FOXNews.com – Bringing Back the Draft – FOX Fan – Speak Out

Secondly minimum wage was raised in Ohio because most people don’t think long term.  Minimum wage is a great political idea but has negative effects in the long run.  Small businesses here are already being forced to decide if they are to lay people off or raise their prices.  Either way we all pay the price.

Categories
Christianity Misc

Fast Day 2

If nothing else I have had some very humbling experiences, which are things I can not get enough of.  I talked to three of my friends before my fast and asked them to pray with me.  Now I know you may be thinking “Jesus said not to let anyone know about your fasting” which is partly true.  Jesus said not to boast about it in an attempt to get regognition from men and that was not my intention.

Everyone should have a few brothers/sisters in their life that they are close to and can talk to.  The three men I talked to are the ones I rely on to keep me on track, the ones who will call me on the carpet if there was sin in my life and the ones who will carry me along when I can’t go any further myself.  That being said I spoke to them and asked them to pray for me and gave them the reasons for my fast.

One of my brothers said he would fast with me, I would never have thought of such a thing.  It was not that he had things in his life he needed to fast for, but he was fasting for me and my family.  I have had people ask me to pray for them and I do immediately so as not to be dishonest when I say I will, but I have never fasted for anyone else in my life, a fact I feel the need to repent of now.  If we are truly to bear one anothers burdens (Gal 6:2) then this should be well with in our expectations.  I have always been amazed by Job’s friends, who sat in ash with him for seven days and mourned with him and never said a word.

Another friend told me as he was praying for me he saw a tree both roots and top and its roots were strong and was a mighty tree.  But he said, even trees obey seasons.  And in a season of rest they rest.  He said this may be a season of rest for me and it is exactly what I am to be doing.  Now I just recently learned that if you want to plant trees and shrubs it is good to do it in the early fall because when these plants are “resting” above the ground their roots are growing and taking a better hold.  This hit home a bit with me because since I am not on the traditional path to Youth Ministry, which has always been my goal I don’t know where I am going now.  Maybe this is a time of root growing and rest before blooming in the next season.

Categories
Christianity

Fast Day One

Today I begin my 3 day fast. Sunday morning I was compelled to do it as I was listening to my Pastor Sunday morning. Basically I haven’t been myself as of late when it comes to Church. Actually I think being on staff really messed me up but I still take all responsibility on myself.

Regardless, I want to hear from God about his plan for me in the Kingdom. I want to know how to handle things at VCC now that I am not on staff or even a member. I am not sure how to simply attend church so I need to hear from God.

Categories
Christianity

The Resolutions | TheResurgence

The Resolutions | TheResurgence

Categories
Christianity

Honest Doubts…

Over the weekend watched a special by Derren Brown, a performer who describes his craft as a mixture of magic, suggestion, psychology, misdirection and showmanship.  In this special he went to several spiritual experts, a Pastor, a spiritualist, a mind-reader, an expert in alien abductions, and pretended to be one of their own.  He promised to reveal the truth if directly asked but using his skills as a magician and showman he did some very convincing things all in an attempt to gain an endorsement from each of the experts.

            When he arrived at the church he told the Pastor he could convert people to a belief in god by touch.  He invited a group of atheists and such to attend.  By the end it looked like a Benny Hinn meeting with people falling over and confessing they needed to believe in God after what just happened.

            He also managed to name things being drawn in another room to a group of psychics as a psychic school, name dreams supposedly captured by his own dream machine, and name the medical history of the group of alien believers.  All but the Pastor gave him an endorsement.

            A magician friend of mine showed be this video and I must admit I was impressed.  My friend is reading his book and I guess he used to be a Christian and is now out to prove all religions false.  One of his points is that there are certain things that are beyond question, like our beliefs in and about God.

I had to ask myself, are there certain things that are beyond question?  Recently I changed my views on a doctrine that I believe is one of those untouchable issues in the church.  I have tried to have a conversation about it with several people and some, but not all, looked at me like I had a gun and wanted to shoot their puppy.

            I have worked with youth for almost 10 years now and it seems that they always hit the wall of questions in their teens.  In that time when you are rebelling against authority and starting to find out who you are you begin to question things.  Often time I have had students confess to me that they were ashamed of their questions as if it made them weak.  That is nothing but religious HOGWASH.  Myles Munroe changed my life when he said “God is not afraid of you honest doubt” If we believe God to be true and truth itself to be God.  Then if an individual is truly seeking for the truth we must believe the will end up with God.  However, if someone is just lazy and looking for a way to rebel, not really looking for truth that is an entirely different matter.  We do our youth and our parishioners a disservice when we make it appear as if God is too weak for their questions.  If we don’t allow them to ask, and their questions and doubts go unanswered or sometimes worse yet poorly answered, they will fester like a cancer and destroy any possibility for the Life of God.

            I have found the times in my life, and there have been a butt load, when I have began to doubt things and searched for honest answers I have come out stronger.  I find it is best to have someone in your life that you can express these questions and doubts to.  I also find it best to research both sides so you don’t simply convince yourself of your own point by only reading people who agree with you.

            Leaving everything open to question doesn’t mean that every point is valid.  I believe in certain doctrines as true such as the virgin birth of Christ.  I have read people who argue against this but I came to the conclusion that it is something Christianity requires.  Someone may feel I am talking out of both sides of my mouth; some things are certain but you should question everything.  I believe you should know what and why you believe something.  I am personally past the point of doubting Jesus Christ as my savior.  I believe in him just as much as I believe in my parents.  My experience with him is unquestionable with me, but as for what goes on around that I am always looking to be more correct.

Categories
Christianity Family Life Misc Politics

Random thoughts…

 

  1. When the democrats loose an election they complain the people weren’t smart enough to understand them.  I guess they just got smarter because I don’t hear that from republicans.

 

  1. How far are we willing to push entertainment in our church services under the guise of bringing people into the church hopefully one day to have a relationship with Jesus, before we feel like we are cheapening the Gospel?

 

 

  1. Why do people feel the need to make the Bible say things it doesn’t say?  Isn’t this a kin to saying “I don’t trust God to know what he is doing?”

 

  1. Why do we make running and playing against the rules in school and then complain that our kids are fat?

 

  1. How come I have never heard a sermon on “Give strong drink unto him that is ready to perish, and wine unto those that be of heavy hearts. Let him drink, and forget his poverty, and remember his misery no more.” (Proverbs 31:6-7)
    1. How can people say it was only grape juice?

 

  1. What happened to the days when Cracker Jack’s had good prizes?

 

  1. How in the world did I ever survive child hood without the nanny state?  My parents never made me wear a helmet (and I Have the scars to prove it), they never ‘baby proofed’ the house, and I played things like tag.

 

  1. Is there really such a biblical concept as sacrificial giving?
Categories
Politics

Rant warning

OK, so this is the last of my political rants for today.  I can’t stand people who will vote against their principles because in one particular issue they like the results.  In this case I am talking about the smoking ban in Ohio.  Many of the same people who were upset about the Kelo V New London decision that weakened private property rights of home owners have no problem with destroying the private property rights on business owners because they don’t like smoke.  It seems to me that it really boils down to not having the strength of your convictions or the stones to do the work needed to force businesses to supply for your demand, a smoke free establishment.
            Ok here is what I mean, if I don’t want to have to deal with smoke I will go to restaurants that don’t have smoking sections, not because they were forced to but because it was a smart business decision.  Applebee’s in our area banned smoking as a private business decision, Ruby Tuesday right across the street did not.  Now if I want to work within a capitalist society I will simply not go to Ruby Tuesday.  They will have a choice taking the loss, or banning smoking on their own.  But tyranny by the majority is still tyranny and many business and people are now being forced to obey the will of the masses that do not even patronize their establishments.  These types of issues should be left out of the governments hands in the people should be allowed to vote with their wallets.  Then everyone can have what they want, unless of course what you really want is a nanny state that will protect you from your own spinelessness.