Thursday, May 26, 2011

What Do You Think of This Quote?

One of our staff members at Bethel shared the quote below today. I'd like to hear your response.

We need to have kids that can be sent off to the most hostile universities, toil in the greediest work environments, and raise their families in the most hedonistic communities and yet not be in the least bit intimidated by their surroundings. Furthermore, they need to be engaged in the lives of people in their culture, gracefully representing Christ's love inside those desperate surroundings. - Dr. Tim Kimmel

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Case for Life

In my opinion there are few current issues more important than the fight for the unborn. The Case for Life: Equipping Christians to Engage the Culture is a new book on the issue that is getting rave reviews. Watch the video promo for the book below. You can purchase it here.

Scott Klusendorf - "The Case for Life" Trailer from Crossway on Vimeo.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Don't Wait for Leaders to Come Along

John Kotter:

Successful organizations don’t wait for leaders to come along. They actively seek out people with leadership potential and expose them to career experiences designed to develop that potential.

(HT: Matt Perman)

Worship God by Serving the Poor

Steve Sjogren writes in this article that we can worship God by serving the poor, and provides 12 practical steps for doing so.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Should You Make Your Kids Go to Church?

In recent months I have heard from a few parents that were upset or disappointed in the fact that we had moved our Sunday morning Student Ministry to Sunday night (we did this primarily because many of our students weren't attending the corporate worship services and we do not believe this to be good for their long-term spiritual health). One of the reasons some of the parents were upset is because they couldn't get their children to come to church if there wasn't something specifically for their age group. Now, there are lot's of things I could say about this myself, but today I came across a post from Michael Kelley that answers the question well and saves me the trouble.

In short, the answer is an emphatic 'yes'. Be the parent, and make them go. Here are the reasons why.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

I'm Tired....

This is somewhat of a rant. OK, there's no somewhat to it. It's a full-on rant. But I don't do it often (actually almost never). And I think it needs to be said.

Late this evening I made a trip to a local pharmacy to pick up a couple of prescriptions. I had to travel a little ways because as I found that there are few pharmacies open past 6 pm on Sunday evenings.

Anyways, as I walked through the store waiting for the prescriptions to get filled, I naturally came across the magazine rack. And while I knew what was there, for some reason this time I became very agitated in my spirit. If you don't understand why, let me explain: I'm tired; really, really tired of the exploitation of women in our culture. I'm tired of the media that promotes it, I'm tired of those who consume it (myself included), and I'm even tired of the women who willingly allow themselves to be exploited. 

And I think its time for Christians to do something about it. It's time for Christian men to refuse to consume it. Whether its the SI Swimsuit Issue, the beer commercials, the TV shows with the subtle sexuality, or simply viewing the magazine covers in the checkout line, it's time for us make a Jeremiah-like covenant (Jer. 31:1) and refuse to look at anything that might cause lust to sprout in our hearts. It's time for us to stop contributing the the exploitation.

And Christian ladies, it's time for you to stop consuming it as well. It's time to stop evaluating yourself based upon what some magazine, model, TV, or commercial says that you should look like. It's time to quit measuring your worth based upon your weight, your bust size, the complexion of your skin, or by what you are wearing or not wearing. It's time to find your worth based upon the fact that you were created in God's image and that he made you beautiful, just the way you are. It's also time to start helping your brothers out by being counter-cultural in how you dress so that men have a safe place in the church where they aren't bombarded by the same temptations they are everywhere else.

Let me say two more things before I am finished. First, let me explain why I'm tired. I'm tired because of the devastation that this issue is causing to men, women, and families. As a pastor at a large church there is hardly a day that goes by that I don't see the profound implications of our culture's obsession with sex and so-called 'beauty'. It's destroying marriages, families, and ultimately our culture as a whole.

Finally, let me end on a positive note. Thankfully, there is hope in the Gospel, which tells us that in Christ we can do all things (Phil. 4:13). This includes fighting sensuality and the temptation to find our joy in anything other than our relationship with Jesus Christ. 

Sensuality feels good for a moment, but it only leads to guilt and pain. But through the power of Christ in us, we can say learn to say"no" to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, godly lives today (Titus 2:11). And when we do, we will receive the blessings that come from purity, and be a counter-cultural witness to what Christ has done in and for us.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Transforming Communities by Transforming Public Schools

This morning I received a voice mail from the assistant superintendent of my children's school district asking me to consider participating in a committee that would be addressing the discipline process for our local high school. I don't know the details yet, but it could be an interesting and important opportunity.

Then I woke up this morning and found this article about the movement of some churches and Christians to engage their communities through the public school system.

Here's the point: we all bemoan the status of our public school systems, but are we willing to do something about it? And more to the point, our public schools are the very heart of our communities; if we want to be salt and light, they are a great place to start.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Parenting 001

Here is a really, really good post by Kevin DeYoung on parenting. I don't really have anything to add because he completely nails in on the head. Take 5 minutes to read this, you will be encouraged and challenged all at the same time.

Some Good News in the Fight for Life in Indiana

A US District Judge has ruled against a temporary injunction in the Indiana Planned Parenthood case. Read about it here.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Doing Justice

If a person has grasped the meaning of God’s grace in his heart, he will do justice. If he doesn’t live justly, then he may say with his lips that he is grateful for God’s grace, but in his heart he is far from him. If he doesn’t care for the poor, it reveals that at best he doesn’t understand the grace he has experienced, and at worst he has not really encountered the saving mercy of God. Grace should make you just. – Tim Keller

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Heavens Declare the Glory of God

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Psalm 19:1 (ESV)

Check out how this is true 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.