Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Ultimate Answer

This past weekend I had the privilege of parching on the resurrection of Lazarus from John 11. You can listen to the message here.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Living By Prayer


Teach me to live by prayer as well as by providence,
for myself, soul, body, children, family, church;
Give me a heart frameable to thy will;
so might I live in prayer,
and honour thee,
being kept from evil, known and unknown.
Help me to see the sin that accompanies all I do,
and the good I can distill from everything.
Let me know that he work of prayer is to bring my will to thine,
and that without this it is folly to pray;
When I try to bring thy will to mine it is to command Christ,
to be above him, and wiser than he:
this is my sin and pride.
I can only succeed when I pray
according to thy precept and promise,
and to be done with as it pleases thee,
according to thy sovereign will.
When thou commandest me to pray
for pardon, peace, brokenness,
it is because thou wilt give me the thing promised,
for thy glory,
as well as for my good.
Help me not only to desire small things
but with holy boldness to desire great things
for thy people for myself,
that they and I might live to show thy glory.
Teach me
that it is wisdom for me to pray for all I have,
out of love, willingly, not of necessity;
that I may come to thee at any time,
to lay open my needs acceptably to thee;
that my great sin lies in my not keeping
the savour of thy ways;
that the remembrance of this truth is one way to the sense of they presence;
that there is no wrath like the wrath of being
governed by my own lusts for my own ends. -- The Valley of Vision, p. 266-267

6 Questions About Hell

I read Love Wins over the weekend and hope to post a short review in the next few days. In the meantime, here's an article by Mark Driscoll in which he answers 6 Questions About Hell.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Secret Millionaire: Gary, IN

21 Great Questions for Leaders

Perry Noble:

God blew my mind while reading the book of James the other morning…and I’ve listed some leadership questions that every leader/potential leader needs to think about and pray through.

1. Do I understand who I am? James 1:1 – notice James didn’t identify himself as the brother of Jesus, but rather His servant! WOW!

2. Do I understand that ministry IS NOT easy? James 1:2-4 (when the writer begins with these verses, that’s a big time sign!)

3. Do I understand that I should spend more time on my face before God rather than worshipping the FACEBOOK god when seeking direction? James 1:5

4. Do you think that James is trying to get a point across? It’s not going to be easy…but we are called to be “in it to win it!” James 1:12

5. Do I understand it’s not "if" I am tempted, but when…and "if" I give into it, then something WILL die? James 1:13-15

6. Do I understand that I am NOT THAT GOOD…that everything is a gift? James 1:16-18

7. How many bad decisions, arguments, and misunderstandings could be avoided if we all simply memorized and applied James 1:19-20? (Also, see James 1:26)

8. Do I understand I am not called just to preach the Word…but live it? James 1:22

9. Do I understand that showing favoritism WILL be a temptation…but I must always war against it? James 2:1-4

10. Do I understand that I am called to live and lead by faith…and if I am not taking steps of faith in my life and ministry, then my faith is DEAD? James 2:14-26

11. Do I understand the weight of James 3:1? WOW!!!

12. Do I fully understand that when I become envious and selfish, then that is simply the beginning of the end? James 3:13-18

13. Do I have the proper motives in regards to leading this ministry? James 4:1-3

14. Am I being opposed by God, or is He offering me grace? James 4:6

15. Am I using my platform (whether it is speaking or the Internet) to falsely attack, accuse, and twist people’s words around? James 4:11-12

16. Do I understand my days are numbered, that I’ve got one shot at this life, and I need to do all that I can to honor the One who called me? James 4:13-17

17. Do I understand that there are seasons of growth and seasons of preparation…and in those seasons of preparation, I should not become impatient but rather wait on God? James 5:7-8

18. Do I understand that integrity HAS to be a priority in my life and ministry? James 5:12

19. Do I understand that I cannot do this alone, that I need accountability in my life? James 5:16

20. Do I fully comprehend James 5:17-18…that Elijah was just like one of us? He literally called fire down from heaven! He prayed for rain…and it rained! I want THAT kind of faith!

21. Do I understand that ministry is messy…that I am called and expected to have tough conversations with the person that the Lord places on my heart, but in doing so, the potential is unlimited? James 5:19-20 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Update from Japan

Late last week I received and update from a Phil Melton, a long-time family friend who has been a missionary in Japan with Evangelical Baptist Missions for over 20 years. Although we have all seen the pictures and heard the reports, I thought it might be helpful to hear from someone on the ground:

Today is one week since the great Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. Confirmed number of deceased is now over 6800. Confirmed missing is now over 10,000. Family members are still seeking to determine whether their relatives are missing or deceased by visiting holding areas where bodies are waiting to be identified.

Those in evacuation shelters because of loss of home or the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant radiation evacuation area now number almost half a million Japanese (over 450,000), and many foreigners are either leaving the country or doing what they can to find a place to stays outside of evacuation areas. One of our goals is to be able to provide shelter for as many as we can through utilizing Camp Raphayada when the time comes.

Last Sunday our church gave an impromptu special offering for the needs of the evacuees and our first donation of food and supplies leaves for the area tomorrow morning through Don, who will be working with CRASH Japan answering the phones for them for eight days.

Much of the north is low on gas, food, heating fuel, and water. We were planning on sending down several special gasoline containers filled with gas for the worker transportation, but after visiting three hardware stores here, we were only able to find one gas container high up on a shelf that was evidently overlooked by early shoppers.

They are now rationing certain supplies even in our area, and we were only able to buy 12 bowls of instant ramen and one box of drink, along with other supplies that were not restricted, to send down to the affected areas. Along with paper supplies, Don took down the new container and two larger but used 5 gallon gas cans from the campsite.

If you would like to have a part in directly meeting the immediate needs of those in the evacuation centers as well as in the lives of Christians and churches in the affected areas, we invite you to join us by making a donation designated Japan Earthquake Relief Fund through EBM at

Thank you for your love and concern for us and our ministries here. Contrary to US media, please do not fret too much for us over the radiation fallout. Experts agree that most areas outside of the evacuation area are not exposed to dangerous levels of radiation from the power plant damage.

God is already answering your prayers. The weather is warming. The power plant work is progressing and not getting worse, and there is hope that within the next two days they will be able to provide power back to the plant to restart cooling motors. The Japanese people are amazing in their resilience, mutual respect, and work ethic. Even those within the evacuation centers are actively participating in the care of fellow evacuees. Thank you for praying for Japan. Do pray that God will use this to turn their hearts to Him.

The Muslims Next Door

This upcoming special on CNN raises some important issues, particularly for believers in NW Indiana as we consider how the Lord would have us to reach the many Muslims who are now our neighbors. Assuming we are called to reach them, we must consider what our attitude and response should be to the nations next door.

Blessed to Be a Blessing

Psalm 67 (ESV)

 May God be gracious to us and bless us
and make his face to shine upon us, Selah
  [2] that your way may be known on earth,
your saving power among all nations.
  [3] Let the peoples praise you, O God;
let all the peoples praise you!

[4] Let the nations be glad and sing for joy,
for you judge the peoples with equity
and guide the nations upon earth. Selah
  [5] Let the peoples praise you, O God;
let all the peoples praise you!

[6] The earth has yielded its increase;
God, our God, shall bless us.
  [7] God shall bless us;
let all the ends of the earth fear him!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Da Bulls

Some great memories tonight as the Bulls celebrated the 20th anniversary of their first NBA Championship  in 1991.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Warfield's Answers to Objections to Giving to the Poor

Warfield (quoted in Keller’s Ministries of Mercy):
Objection 1. “My money is my own.”
Answer: Christ might have said, “my blood is my own, my life is my own.” Then where should we have been?
Objection 2. “The poor are undeserving.”
Answer: Christ might have said, “They are wicked rebels . . . shall I lay down my life for these? I will give to the good angels.” But no, he left the ninety-nine, and came after the lost. He gave his blood for the undeserving.
Objection 3. “The poor may abuse it.”
Answer: Christ might have said the same; yea, with far greater truth. Christ knew that thousands would trample his blood under their feet; that most would despise it; that many would make it an excuse for sinning more; yet he gave his own blood.
Oh, my dear Christians! If you would be like Christ, give much, give often, give freely, to the vile and poor, the thankless and the undeserving. Christ is glorious and happy and so will you be. It is not your money I want, but your happiness. Remember his own word, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”
(HT: Matt Perman)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Status Quo

The job isn't to catch up to the status quo; the job is to invent the status quo. -- Seth Godin in Poke the Box

Friday, March 4, 2011

Ten Reasons to Be Optimistically Pro-Life

Last night I had the privilege of hearing Janet Parshall speak at The Women's Center of Northwest Indiana's annual banquet. The focus or her message was that despite the long way we have to go, today there are large and small signs of victory.

Following up from that, tonight I came across a recent post from Trevin Wax on ten reasons why he is optimistically pro-life:

10. Recent Polls
9. Abortions Treatment on TV and in Movies
8.The Revulsion to Sex-selection Abortion
7. The Exposing of Planned Parenthood's Corruption
6. Planned Parenthood's Recent Talking Points
5. Abortion as a 'Tragic Choice'
4. Young People
3. Ultrasound Technology and Pregnancy Support Centers
2. The Third Wave
1. God Hears

For more details, read the whole thing here.



About Me

I am a husband to Eva, father of 4, pastor, and most of all passionate follower of Jesus Christ. The focus of my life is to make the most of every opportunity God gives me to bring glory to Him. Outside of the time spent in my role as a pastor, I spend most of my time with my family -- a good deal of that coaching various sports teams that my children are involved with. Every fall and winter you will find me rushing to the woods of Indiana and West Virginia in search of a monster whitetail buck.