Monday, June 29, 2009

Deep thoughts by Donald Bloesch (Quote of the Day)

"In and of itself the finite is not capable of receiving the infinite, but the infinite can penetrate the finite." - Donald Bloesch, "God the Almighty: Power, Wisdom, Holiness, Love," 1995.


My reflections:

Too often we assume that God is ineffably mysterious and thus incapable for human understanding. But human history has shown that though with human powers alone the infinite God would be impossible to know, God has chosen to reveal himself. This was done ultimately in the incarnation, life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ for the salvation of sinners like you and me. God found a way for humans to receive Him . . . O the riches of His mercy and grace.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Free Courses - http://worldwide-classroom.com/

Covenant Seminary is located in St. Louis, MO. It is a top-notch seminary that is well-respected. For the last several years they have made a number of their classes available for free!!! You can download mp3 audio lectures, class notes, and professor manuscripts all for nothing.

They have classes on church history, preaching (recommended by me!), Bible classes, and much more. You can seriously take almost every required seminary class for no cost at all!! Whether you are a die-hard Bible student or a laid back church goer, there is something in these classes for you.

http://worldwide-classroom.com/

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Does anyone buy this?

For those of you who watch what you eat, here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.

1. The Japanese eat very little fat
and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat
and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

3. The Chinese drink very little red wine
and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

4. The Italians drink a lot
of red wine
and suffer fewer
heart attacks than Americans.

5. The Germans drink a lot of beers and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

CONCLUSION

Eat and drink what you like.
Speaking English is apparently what kills you.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Always a good reminder - quote of the day

"If you preach a sermon that would be acceptable to the members of a Jewish synagogue or a Unitarian congregations, there is something radically wrong with it . . . There is something distinctive in a Christian message. What makes it distinctive is that all-pervading presence of a saving and sanctifying Christ. Jesus Christ must be at the heart of every sermon you preach. This is just as true of edificational preaching as it is of evangelistic preaching."

-Jay Adams

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day!!

This video includes some bathtime footage of Samuel (yes, he got in the bowl all on his own!), a bit of our trip to the Littleton Historical Museum's farm, and his Father's Day greetings for his grandpas.
video

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Good reminder about forgiveness... (quote of the day)

"That all possible kinds of mortification, if they were void of the love of God, could not efface a single sin. That we ought, without anxiety, to expect the pardon of our sins by the blood of Jesus Christ, only endeavoring to love Him with all our hearts. That God seemed to have granted the greatest favors to the greatest sinners, as ore signal monuments of his mercy."

Brother Lawrence (ca. 1670 AD): a monk who knew that no human effort could earn God's favor . . . it's all about trusting and believing that God loves, redeems, and forgives schmucks like us!

Monday, June 15, 2009

The art of meaningful conversation - quote of the day

"Pastors especially, since we are frequently involved with large truths and are stewards of great mysteries, need to cultivate conversational humility. Humility means staying close to the ground (humus), to people, to everyday life, to what is happening with all its down-to-earthness.
"I do not want to be misunderstood: pastoral conversation should not bound along no mindless cliches like gutter water. What I intend is that we simply be present and attentive to what is there conversationally, as respectful of the ordinary as we are of the critical. Some insights are only accessible while laughing. Others arrive only by indirection."

- Eugene Peterson, The Contemplative Pastor (a worthy read for any involved in ministry)

Monday, June 08, 2009

Car Trouble at the Border





As our family was driving home from IA to Colorado, our car's exhaust system must have become exhausted at the Iowa/Nebraska border. It simply took a nose dive at the front of our car. Via my Blackberry you can see pictures of Carrie and Samuel in the tow truck, a picture of the broken part, and a picture of Samuel and me waiting for the tow truck.

We had nothing but great service from a Council Bluffs towing company (Arrow Towing, I believe) and Atchley (sp.?) Ford of Omaha had us in and out in 2 1/2 hours on a Saturday afternoon.

Am I approachable?

This question should be asked by a pastor every week . . . so when I asked myself this question today, I realized that I am often not approachable.

I recognize there are a number of things I need to change to be a better pastor in this area. Here are my top 5:

1. Talk less, listen more
2. When I listen, I need to listen more thoroughly, trying to understand a person, not give them advice. Then I must hold the stories of these people with utmost honesty and confidence.
3. I need to more vocal and honest about my many shortcomings.
4. I need to give people my time . . . this will require moving slower in the day and intentionally not over-scheduling, which ultimately pulls me to tasks instead of people.
5. I need to take time to be in solitude and silence each day with God so that I don't carry around so many anxieties of my own.

Here's an encouraging word from Ken Sande on the importance and necessity of being approachable in ministry: http://www.peacemaker.net/site/pp.aspx?c=aqKFLTOBIpH&b=5069819&printmode=1