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Guest authors provide news and commentary.
Posted 11/25/14 at 12:05 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
God has given us a desire for each other and a desire to be married. God has placed those desires in everyone so that a man will GO out and pursue a woman, and make her his wife, and a girl will be happily pursued. It is completely normal to want to be married. Marriage is a system that God set up and ordained.
Marriage is a beautiful picture of the gospel. Husbands are commanded to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself for it. Wives are commanded to submit themselves to their husbands as the church submits itself to the Lord. As the woman submits to her husband and her husband submits to the Word and to the Lord, the gospel is shown to all who look on their marriage.. and God is glorified.
So, what about the rest of us? I don’t want to miss the chance to live out the gospel for the world. I want a life that proclaims the glory of God. What about me? What about now?
In 1 Corinthians chapter 7, Paul speaks about marriage and singleness, and what he says may surprise you. He doesn’t say, “get married,” and he doesn’t say, “stay single.” He says, “Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife.” (vs 27) Um, well what does that mean? It means, “Hey, both are good….chill out!” FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 11:26 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
People ask me periodically why I shop at Walmart? With a smile but no less serious I share as a preacher of the Gospel I already have TARGET on my back! The truth is we are marked men (and women) when we live for God. The Bible reminds us “We are not ignorant of Satan’s devices.” He is a sick snake and destruction is his game and loser and liar are his names.
The fact is, I frequent both stores (Walmart and Target) but the threats of the enemy are real. Very real. We should not cower in defeat but its imperative to put on the FULL ARMOR of God from the feet up. From head to toe we need to be dressed for both worship and WAR! Many don’t want to hear this or believe it but we are in a fight. Life is a fight. The Apostle Paul reminds us to “fight the good fight.”
Despite having a bullseye on my back and a walking target for Satan’s attacks I must confess that “EVERLAST” is tattooed on my forehead. Some days I feel like a preacher and other times I feel like a punching bag. What was confusing for so long were some of the most insensitive comments come from carnal and complacent Christians. You expect it from the “lost” behind but its dissapointing from believers out front. Too often, I have encountered folks who want to take “cheap shots.” My Uncle Bobby Shelton played three seasons with the Detroit Tigers (AAA) in 1967-1969. The Tigers won the World Series that last year and he just missed out getting a ring. It has been said “the loudest critics come from the cheapest seats.” I have also learned those that bring the least to a meal demand to the eat the most. #Hello FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 11:12 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
Another way to describe this tension in the Church would be to use parents as an illustration. Let’s imagine three or four couples along with their children, having a dinner party at someone’s house. The kids are in the back yard playing while the parents are relaxing over coffee and conversation. There is apparent unity and consensus among them as they enjoy each other’s company.
However, when the children come into the living room to join the conversation so does the potential for friction as the different parenting styles become evident. Everyone keeps their thoughts to themselves but on the ride home each car is filled with comments like “I can’t believe they let their kids act that way,” or “They are so mean to their children,” or “That’s not how I would deal with that situation”. These parents got along until the children came into the room.
This family analogy can also illustrate the sentiments between ministers of the Gospel. It may be easy to get along with other ministers, even from different camps, until the sheep (children) are in the room. Suddenly the gifting in each minister wants to impact the people of God according to their abilities. We sometimes presume we know what the people of God “really” need. Instead of each of us affirming and preferring the other ministers, we can doubt their validity. FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 10:54 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
In student ministry, Jesus and pizza go together like peanut butter and jelly. The era of “youth ministry” is slowly fading, and the era of discipleship making needs to make its voice heard.
Pizza and more pizza. I think we’re all sick of pizza. In fact, I believe students are looking for more than just food when they come to a student event or gathering. While pizza, music and games are great accessories to any student ministry, they cannot be the foundation in which a ministry is built on. They can never be. Discipleship must be the #1 priority. Why? Because everything else flows from the essence of discipleship. If we’re not making disciples, we’re not fulfilling our calling as Christ-followers.
I have this gut-wrenching feeling that many students will move off to college with nothing learned from church except food, games and shiny events. None of these things are bad, but they aren’t the crux of what will keep a student fixated on the face of Jesus once walking into the real world. Discipleship is key. FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 10:44 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
This is Sir Edmund Hillary of New Zealand and Tenzing Norgay of Nepal, the first two men to climb to the peak of Mount Everest.
Tenzing Norgay, in his autobiography titled Tiger of the Snows, writes about the experience of climbing Kang Peak in the Himalayas with a man named George Frey, on a 1952 Swiss expedition:
At first the going was easy enough, following a long snow slope into which we could kick good steps, and not so steep that we needed a rope between us. But after a while the angle grew a bit sharper, and the snow harder, and I stopped and put on my steel-spiked crampons, so as to have a steadier footing.
“Aren’t you going to put yours on?” I called up to Frey, who was in the lead. “No, I don’t need them,” he answered. And we continued climbing. Once again there is the question of whether I should have done otherwise—such as arguing or urging more strongly. But Frey, as I have said, was an excellent climber. He had had much experience in the Alps, had certainly been in much more difficult places than where we were now, and seemed to be having no trouble. FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 10:27 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
Here’s an email I received:
This morning, I had to be out of the house for a little while and my 15 year old son babysat my 6 year old son. We let our 6-year-old get on the computer because he is a music FANATIC and spends hours on youtube watching videos, especially classic rock. Today my older son walked in and caught him looking at some ugly pictures. A quick look at the history reveals he had typed in “sexy neckit (naked) girls” in the search engine and I am DEVASTATED at what he saw. Images that I didn’t even want to see, much less my SIX year old. I want to handle this correctly…I don’t know what to do. I need to know WHY he even searched for that and I need to know how to punish him. It is making me feel like a miserable failure as a parent (we don’t monitor enough, we don’t go to sunday school enough, etc) I can’t stop crying. Of course I called my husband at work and I’m going to wait until he gets home so we can both talk to him. Our older son asked our younger son why he was looking at that and he said “my mind told me to and I cant control it” Please, do you have any advice how to handle this?? FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 10:17 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
“Now, the birth of Jesus came about in this way….” (Matthew 1:18).
Do you like a true-life adventure story? This one is the best. It’s found in only four chapters in the Bible: Matthew 1-2 and Luke 1-2.
You like genealogies? Then check out the birth narratives about our Lord Jesus. See Matthew 1:1-14 and also Luke 3:21-38.
You like mysteries? Try to figure out how those two lists of ancestors works out for the lineage of Jesus. If you finally give up, then (and only then) go to a commentary written by a Bible-believing scholar. Your church library probably has several.
You are a history student? Then check out Luke 2:1-3 where “the beloved physician” gives the historical setting for the birth of our Lord. Then, move up one chapter and see how Luke does the same thing for the beginning of Jesus’ earthly ministry some three decades later.
You love conspiracies? (There’s a lot of that going around today. Is Elvis really dead? Who shot JFK? Was General Patton murdered?) Then, check out King Herod in Matthew chapter 2 and notice his murderous rampage against anyone who appears to be a threat, even little babies. Sheesh. What a monster. And notice how the Lord Jesus sent the Magi with funds (“gold”) to finance the trip of the little Holy Family to Egypt, just ahead of Herod’s legions. They slipped away just in time. FULL POST
Posted 11/25/14 at 10:00 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices
I was 17 when the State of Alabama decided to take a chance and issue me a driver’s license. The trooper giving the test admitted he was not too sure about me at the time.
Over these 57 years of driving, I have logged more than a million miles on the streets and highways. And I keep learning some things about safety. Frankly, I worry about my three children and their families because some of these lessons are learned only on the road and not in textbooks or classrooms.
Whether they can be taught by a grandfather on the internet is a valid question.
So, for Leah and Jessica and Grant, for Abby and Erin, and for Darilyn and JoAnne, and within a few short years, for Jack also–the only one of our eight grands without a driver’s license–here are some urgent considerations Grandpa Joe wants to bring to your attention.
I would love for you to print this out and read it several times and even discuss it among yourselves.
1) Hydroplaning kills. FULL POST
Posted 11/24/14 at 2:36 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
Back in October 2011, I called one of my childhood heroes and dear friend, MEADOWLARK LEMON. He answered the cell in his rich, deep voice and said: “Brother Frank!” It’s a fact: “The Clown Prince of Basketball” always makes me laugh!! The Lord had laid him on my heart and I told him that the next time he was in St Louis, Missouri to let me know because I had a church or two who would be thrilled to host his ministry.
In life, we need more DOOR-KEEPERS not gate keepers. Doorkeepers “open doors” but gate-keepers attempt to keep them closed. What the iconic Basketball Hall of Famer said next floored me but shouldn’t have surprised me. He said: “Frank, ironically I will be in Saint Louis, MO on December 3, 2011 attending my good friend, ALBERT PUJOLS annual gala for his foundation that evening.” Without missing a beat the Harlem Globetrotter legend said music to my ears and as I type this I can still hear the tune of “Sweet Georgia Brown” playing in the background of my mind. He said “Brother Frank, I appreciate you trying to open a couple church doors for me and I want you to meet me in St Louis, MO on Saturday, December 3, 2011 as my personal guest and I will introduce you to my friend, Albert!” FULL POST
Posted 11/24/14 at 2:29 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices
I gotta admit: I don’t always take Sundays seriously. Often times, attending church feels like another thing to put on the calendar, right along with doctor visits, school plays, running errands, and visiting the library. I have full weeks, and church is one more thing added to my full week. And so I go to church, do church-ish things, like sing and listen to a sermon, then go home and move on to the next thing. Oil changed? Check. Church? Check. Pay bills? Check.
But I was recently reminded that the gathering of believers on Sundays is a very sacred thing indeed. I would encourage you to slowly read the following quote by N.T. Wright:
In particular, the gospels (especially John) and the early practice of the church (as in Paul) reflect the very early understanding of the church that the first day of the week, the day of Easter, has become a sign within the present world and its temporal sequence that the life of the age to come has already broken in. Sunday, kept as a commemoration of Easter ever since that event itself (a quite remarkable phenomenon when you come to think about it), is not simply a legacy of Victorian values but a perpetual sign, joyfully renewed week by week, that all time belongs to God and stands under the renewing lordship of Jesus Christ. FULL POST