Wednesday, June 27, 2007

CIY Elective class (Apologetics)

I had the great privilege to teach the Apologetics: Design in God's Creation during the 2007 Colorado 1 CIY. Unfortunately, I did not have enough copies of my prepared notes for everyone who attended. I had thought I could post the document on my blog, but it only allows me to post pictures. So, if you or someone you know did not get a copy of the notes, but wants one, leave your email in a comment, and I'll email you the document.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

#1 Movie in America

Someone asked me this week if I was planning to see Evan Almighty. It’s supposed to be wholesome “family” entertainment. It’s supposed to be funny, and it’s supposed to contain some biblical phrases. I will probably eventually see it, but I do not plan to see it on the silver screen. I’ll probably wait until the library gets a copy, and then check it out.

This article from AIG tells a lot about how I feel about the movie.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Great CIY Conference

We just got back from the Durango, Colorado CIY (Christ In Youth) summer conference last night. It was a little over 1000 miles back to Longview, TX, and it took 2 full days of driving. I'm a little tired of being cooped up in a van, but we did get to see some beautiful country (mostly in colorful Colorado) during the trip home. One of the highlights of the trip home was a snowball fight at a scenic overlook at the top of the Wolf Creek pass. Despite the protests of "No, you'll get Rocky Mountain Fever!" several of the youth and I drank from a fresh spring of melted snow during the same stop.

Thank you, all for your prayers while we were away. To those who were at CIY, thank you also for your prayers.

The Lord did some awesome work in the lives of a lot of youth. I'll post another article later about some of the unique work He did in my life during the conference.

Thank you, CIY, for your incredible ministry. You have some very talented people doing great work for the kingdom!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

It's not MY nephew!

It's pretty amazing how far PETA or other evolutionists will go to link chimps to humans.
After reading the article (you can click the picture to zoom in) what do you think of these 2 statements?
a) "Activists want to ensure that the apes don't wind up homeless..."
b) "Their food and veterinary bills run about $6800 a month."

Monday, June 11, 2007

Are you worshipping in a warehouse or a factory?

If I owned a grape orchard, maybe I’d live in Italy or along the Columbia River. Either way, I’d want things to run smoothly. Who wouldn’t want to have highly qualified workers in your own personal vineyard? But it would be very frustrating to find that the workers were eating the produce rather than nourishing, increasing, and gathering the harvest. I think sometimes, God sees his “orchard” under-producing because the workers, while skillful, have grown content in a sedentary existence.

One of the missionaries that our church supports shared this analogy yesterday in reference to the American church. For too long, significant portions of the American church have been content to enjoy partaking in the fruit of the vineyard rather than nourishing, increasing, and gathering it. Obviously, not everyone is content to live a “Sunday Christian life,” but unfortunately, churches have become warehouses rather than factories.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Can Atheists morally Denounce Evil?

It took me about a week to get through this debate staged in the form of 6 corresponding letters, but I found it fascinating. An atheist and a Christian sent "letters" back and forth discussing "whether or not Christianity has been good for people." When you get time, you should check it out. The links are not well done by the fact that after you finish reading each letter and its response, you have to go back near the beginning of the letter to find the next Part.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Find THAT guy!

“If it’s ‘impossible’ to deport illegal aliens, how did we come to have so much specific information about them? I keep hearing they are Catholic, pro-life, hardworking, just dying to become American citizens, and will take jobs other Americans won’t. Someone must have talked to them to gather all this information. Let’s find that guy—he must know where they are!” —Ann Coulter

Wal-Mart Doesn't Accept Confederate Currency

In our 21st century American culture, we are faced with the overwhelming desire to accumulate possessions. Capitalism has rationalized materialism. How should Christians live within the boundaries of our culture without living within the clutches of its prime influence?

About a week ago, a friend of mine at work told me that his parent’s house had burned down. They lost everything. It really hurt my heart to think that these people, who I have never met, had all of their belongings ripped catastrophically from them. My friend told me that his parent’s biggest loss, from their own point of view, was the death of their pets. Isn’t this true, though, that life’s most important treasures are relationships?

After reflecting, it has given an entire community a chance to give. The victims of this fire now have a testimony of grace from close friends and from people whom they’ve never met. Even more than the testimony, they have a chance to learn how to truly and practically trust God for their provision. The former materialist and extorter, Matthew writes in chapter 6:

19 "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also…25 "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? 28 "And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

I am convicted, to my shame, that my life is too influenced by the culture’s draw for the things of this world. Had it been my house that had burned, I can only imagine the pools of self-pity in which I would be swimming. But in this realization, I hope to live with a Heavenly perspective, since I’ll not be taking anything with me beyond the Pearly Gates anyway.

Randy Alcorn in his book, The Treasure Principle, puts it something like this: if you had lived in South Carolina in 1865 would you put your investment futures in Confederate currency or Union money? The south was on the verge of defeat, and as we know today, Wal-mart does not accept confederate money (although they’ll probably be accepting pesos soon…but that’s a different blog entry). Just like confederate currency, when the kingdom is fulfilled, today’s stuff, which we crave and horde, will have no value. (having said all of this, I would encourage you to keep an off-site computer backup of your important data in case a fire strikes your stuff.)