Sunday, March 29, 2009

Childlike Faith

My daughter, Sydney, started public school two years ago largely due to sensing it was God’s calling for her to be salt and light. Since then she has led four of her friends to faith in Christ and is actively inviting kids to the OneTen movement here at Grace Point. Today, Kite Day, my little girls have invited a neighborhood girl to come and hear the Gospel story of Jesus and we continue to hope, pray and trust that our neighbors’ lives will be wrecked for the Gospel. It is a simple, natural thing to tell friends about what has changed your life. It is a simple childlike thing to tell friends about what you’re excited about. Sometimes when we lose those childlike friendships we make it complex--but faith and faithfulness are simple, childlike and world-changing.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Be On Guard

I was riding along a trail that I cut over a year ago--I know it well. It was a perfect spring day and I had my head phones on and I was just lost in my surroundings. As I was heading down a wooded stretch I began to hear what sounded, through my headphones, a sea of locusts. It was that all too familiar sound and my heart began to race I looked down and around and I had just past a coiling 5 foot rattle snake. I hammered the pedals out of there! This is an all too familiar occurrence in our lives; a familiar path, lost in the surroundings of familiarity, not realizing something has changed--something potentially catastrophic. Be alert, always on guard, the enemy is waiting.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Drawing Outside the Rule Box

Last night my wife said to me “drawing outside the rule box again are you?” She has a knack for mixing metaphors in a strangely accurate way. Drawing outside the lines, breaking the rules and thinking outside the box all were morphed into a pretty accurate summation of the line of reasoning I was pursuing at the time. Parables are powerful forms of communication because they carry so much truth in such a small package--they are timeless and in a few words we can carry profound meaning. In a few words we can also say nothing: j fkna tou psnas airs or the same letters JFK NATO UPS NASA IRS. They are the exact same letters in the same order just bunched together in ways that connect shared meaning. So when my wife says to me “drawing outside the rule box” she is drawing on depth of meaning that has been bunched together in order to communicate. We have all done this with our ONE stories recently: I was blind and now I see. I was a prodigal who found his way home. I was seeking meaning and found it in Christ. In a short powerful way we can condense our story into a meaningful parable.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Long Journey Home Begins by Considering the Father

When my pain gets acute enough I begin to seek relief and it is then that I consider that there is a better way a truer reality and inevitably it is that reality that is home. Not the home made by moms and dads that this world offers but in the arms of the Father who waits, who gave, who gives still. Prior to the pig pen, our sense of entitlement leads us to pleasure and pacifying and gratifying our desires. When that falters and the money runs out in self-reliance we slop the pigs, resenting the state of affairs but still willful enough to hold out Maybe we cast blame, or angrily judge or accuse but soon enough we break and we acknowledge what we have always known to be true. We are loved, we have a home and we can return their in complete acceptance where we are received with joy and we see the joy in the eye of our Father. It is what we have always longed for and in that moment we know--we at last are home. What all the treasures and pleasures could not satisfy the joyful delight of the Father fills and satisfies…brokenness is the beginning to the pathway home.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

God"s glory implies less of me

2 Corinthians 3:17-18 says “Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the glory of the Lord are being transformed into his likeness with every increasing glory which comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”

As the Spirit of God has control of my life greater Glory is reflected: more of him less of me. As I pursue my glory, less of the Spirit emanates from my life. The duality of motive is so profound in my alone. I tend to want to point to T.V. preachers or well marketed and slick self promoters and yet in my own heart there is no less competition for personal glory that vies for the place of God. Where his Spirit is in increasing measure so His glory is revealed in increasing measure: more of him, less of me.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Mind the Gap

The chime on my phone went off right as I was deliberating whether or not to send the email. Normally I would have just trudged right through and sent it but I have been measuring conflict a lot more and trying to avoid needless drama. This, however, would not go away and the chime gave me the impetus to address the issue. Conflict is inevitable and yet we must with yielded hearts and a biblical framework approach the circumstance through relationship. After the dust settled the conflict wasn’t conflict at all but rather a miscommunication--I’m so glad I responded in faith. Relationships that weather conflict are stronger and richer and capable of greater.