Here is a short video of our Easter Sunday morning.
Here is a short video of our Easter Sunday morning.
“Life is so hard” is a phrase that I have heard a lot lately.
And I agree. It is.
It is so hard to be a teenager in the world today with all the peer pressures. More than ever before, there are so many unhappy teenagers.
It is so hard to be a college student in the world today with all of the major decisions to make about what your future will look like. It is overwhelming.
It is so hard to be a young adult in the world today with the high cost of living. Generally speaking, two working adults with a car payments and a house payment will really struggle to make ends meet. Financial issues may be the worst troubles of all.
It is so hard to be a parent in the world today with all the busy-ness we live with. And with all the fears and distractions.
For many people, it often seems like there is “no looking up.” Like there is no hope. Like we cannot actually succeed, do well, make a difference, or be effective. And if there really is some reason to be optimistic, then what is it?
Hear these old words from God as He was speaking to his wayward, struggling people in the book of Jeremiah:
“Thus says the LORD: ‘Stand by the roads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls.'” -Jeremiah 6:16
There is a way to live life right. There is a path that leads us in the right direction. There is light at the end of the tunnel. There is a reason to be hopeful. There is optimism. There are better days ahead. There is joy in the future. There is rest for our souls.
Let us take time to LOOK and see where our lives are not right. And lets see God’s ways and walk in it.
God’s way is where the good way is!
The very last part of that verse above was intentionally left out. It says “But they said, ‘we will not walk in it.'” (Jer. 6:16)
Oh the arrogance and ignorance to look and see the right thing to do, and yet still not do it.
Recently I was introduced to a new song that has really blessed me.
Josh Garrels is the musician. He is new to me. You may want to check out his stuff. He gives away his music all the time. Check out his website to download some of his albums for free.
I have not listened to much other than this one song, but it has really stuck to me.
It is a re-make of the old hymn Farther Along. He uses the same chorus but has written his own lyrics.
You can listen to the whole song here.
Here is an excerpt from the song:
“Still I get hard pressed on every side
Between the rock and a compromise
Like the truth and pack of lies fightin’ for my soul
And I’ve got no place left go
Cause I got changed by what I’ve been shown
More glory than the world has known
Keeps me ramblin’ on
Skipping like a calf loosed from its stall
I’m free to love once and for all
And even when I fall I’ll get back up
For the joy that overflows my cup
Heaven filled me with more than enough
Broke down my levee and my bluff
Let the flood wash me
And one day when the sky rolls back on us
Some rejoice and the others fuss
Cause every knee must bow and tongue confess
That the son of god is forever blessed
His is the kingdom, we’re the guests
So put your voice up to the test
Sing Lord, come soon”
4 Things I love about working with FCA
Nearly 10 years ago a close friend introduced me to the fine people who work with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in the Kentuckiana area. When we met then, I did not know how much God would bless me through their ministry and their devotion and commitment to Christ. Here are 4 things that I love about working with FCA:
Caring for those people who are physically unable to get to church is a challenge. Many churches fail to remember these people. Kevin Greer has written an excellent article about “Shut-In Ministry.”
You can read the article here.
For the past 3 Sunday evenings, we have been blessed and encouraged to have one of our church members teach us about the Bible.
The title of his 3-part series was “What we believe about the Bible.”
You can listen to each of them here.
Part 1 – The Authority of the Bible
Part 3 – How we got the Bible we have
The Bible truly is God’s Word! May you be blessed and strengthened in your faith as you listen to these 3 messages.
When our first son, Joshua Jr., was born on January 2, 2008, I wrote him a lullaby. I was overcome with God’s goodness to me. I couldn’t then and I cannot now believe that I am father and daddy. I most certainly do not deserve all the blessing in my life. God is good to me. I have memorized that lullaby, and I sing it now to all of our children. I had thought that I would be able to write each of them a lullaby, but I have just adapted this one to fit each of them. It is pretty much the same lullaby, but I did have to change more this time since she is a girl. Either way, it expresses my heart in life and in fatherhood.
I will never forget that day in my front yard as a little boy when a friend from the neighborhood made me mad, and I called him something that I should not have called him. My mother heard me say it. She grabbed me by the arm; took me inside, into her bathroom in her bedroom; reached under the sink; pulled out a fresh bar of Dial soap; and crammed it into my mouth until I got the point.
She did not want me to talk like that ever again! I am thankful for a mom like that. It is because of her teaching me in moments like that one (I have never forgotten that!) that I have always tried to speak well and not have a foul mouth.
Well in the Bible in Proverbs 31 we have an awesome passage where another Godly mother is talking to her son. Many people are familiar with verses 10-31 about the “Godly woman.” But far less people are familiar with the first 9 verses of chapter 31 of Proverbs. King Lemuel says these 9 verses are an oracle that his mother taught him. It is so profound!
Verse 2 expresses how concerned she is for her son. She knows his potential. She knows that God has a calling and purpose on his life. She is burdened that her son not waste his life and throw his life away. And so she gives him, her son, this great advice.
Her advice is so fitting for today, Here it is:
31:3 speaks to the danger that women can be. Bad relationships can destroy people. Don’t let women distract you. (Obviously, men can distract women too. I am not meaning this to be one way. Relationships can be distracting.)
31:4-7 speaks about alcohol and what it can be good for. But it also speaks about how it distorts one’s focus and concentration. And if one plans to be a leader and difference maker, they need to stay away from Alcohol. Lemuel’s mother says alcohol may be cool for some people, but for those with a vision and a calling and a purpose Alcohol is not for them. Alcohol misleads people, and so – stay away from it.
Then 31:8-9 speak about the poor and the needy and those who cannot speak up for themselves. This godly mother in the Bible tells her son to make it his responsibility to stand for those who cannot stand for themselves. In other words, she is telling her son to make a difference in people’s lives. Success or significance is greater when you are not content on making your life better, but on making the lives of others better.
Notice that she is not telling her son to be the best or smartest or fastest or best looking. Certainly she may desire those things. But in the end, success is not determined by those things. This godly mother knew that. In the end, the way we impacted people is what counts. The lives that have been touched is what really matters!
May we all hear these 3 wise words from this Godly mother!
This past week I became very sick with a stomach virus that I had heard had been going around. This terrible “bug” left me depleted and in bed for several days. Cold, shaky, and weak, I did not leave my bed for nearly 48 hours. (Thanks to Lance Armstrong and Manti Te’o, I was not bored out of my mind.)
But as I laid there all that time, I was able to reflect on my life. (Now I certainly understand that a 48 hour stomach virus is not a very big deal. This is not at all to put me in a category as someone who is very sick or in the hospital.) There is so much that goes through your mind when you are sick. Every time I get sick, I go through this phase of wondering if I will ever get better. What if I don’t? Anyways, I always do. And here are some of my observations that I would like to share:
Here is a video of Drew Dillman being interviewed after he finished 2nd place in Nationals for Under 23 Cyclocross.
At the 2:30 mark he speaks about his church. First Baptist Fairdale.