You Got Slimed!

Who here remembers the great Nickelodeon show “You Can’t Do That on Television”?  The high point of that show was always folks getting that disgusting looking slime poured all over their heads.  I could only imagine how nasty that stuff probably smells and feels.

I saw a verse this morning when I was flipping through my bible that made me think about that nasty slime.  Obadiah was a prophet back in they day that had a vision that takes up all of about 1 full page in my bible.  But wow does that 1 page have some pretty powerful stuff in it!

slimedObadiah 1:15 says this: “The day of the Lord is near for all nations.  As you have done, it will be done to you…”  Now that part is not so bad, mainly because we have all heard that before and know that in general when we treat folks nicely, we get niceness in return.  The verse then says, “…your deeds will return upon your head.”  That’s right…ON YOUR HEAD!

So, let’s all take a moment to reflect on all those not-so-lovely things we’ve done…  The guy we cut off in traffic and the person we spoke rudely to, all of that comes back and smacks us in the face!  That’s an eye opener for me and changes the way I look at doing something that I will regret later.  This doesn’t make it so easy to dismiss or excuse being an idiot or jerk anymore….ouch!

What a Dirty Man

pitinoFor those of you who don’t pay too much attention to sports, Rick Pitino is the head coach of the University of Louisville Cardinals, and is a pretty darn good coach.  Last week, a news story broke that Pitino, who is married and has five kids, got another woman pregnant and paid for her to have an abortion.  Now adultery is a disgusting sin, and abortion is murder, but this story gets worse.  Pitino and the woman had sex at a restaurant, and by the way, this woman is now married to the Louisville Equipment Manager.

I’ve always thought that Pitino had a little bit of a dirty feel to him and wouldn’t be surprised if he had connections to the mob.  After all, he is a true Italian-American, born and raised in New York.  And on top of that, who wears a white suit?…I mean really!  And for the final straw, when he held a news conference to discuss this whole mess, he actually commented that “I will remain as head coach at Louisville.”  Really dude?…cause that is the most important thing in your life right now.

As much as that bothers and disgusts me, maybe I shouldn’t be quite so judgmental.  In my summer courses, I’ve been taking Old Testament Theology and I recently read through Hosea.   Hosea had a rough go, but this guy knew his stuff.  In the first chapter, the Lord tells Hosea to go take an “adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness.”  So Hosea goes and marries Gomer, who the bible actually calls a whore.  This woman is named Gomer (not so hot) and she is a prostitute who continues to commit adultery but Hosea loves her anyway.

I could only imagine how hard it would be to love someone that continually betrayed and dishonored you and your covenant of marriage.  The Lord tells Hosea, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress” (Hosea 3:1a).  In the word “though,” The Lord acknowledges that it would be hard for us to love someone like that.  He then goes on, “Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods…” (Hosea 3:1b).

Don’t be too quick to justify that you are not an “Israelite,” cause we are!  We are God’s chosen people today and He just compared us to an adulterer!  When we sacrifice time, money, energy with God for other things, we are committing adultery against Him.  He desires to the be the center of our lives, but we allow other things to take over.  So, next time you see some sleezy looking politician, actor, or athlete admit to adultery, remember that to God, we are all adulterers…

BUT….He still loves us and grants us grace from our sins!  For me, that is beyond my understanding!

Baby Got Back

Hi…Cris here.  I mentor a 15-year-old young lady.   She’s your typical teenager…full of attitude and ready to roll her eyes at your attempts to be cool.  In our time together, I have learned that when she does say something, it’s gonna be good and I better listen! As we were walking to the car after a meeting over a Hardee’s Little Thickburger and Fries, she said to me “You don’t need to wear those pants again…they make your butt look big.” I immediately started laughing but quickly looked at my rear in the Hardee’s window reflection…she was right. It was one of those statements that you didn’t want to hear but was thankful someone had the guts to tell you….kind of like when you have a piece of green-something stuck in your teeth at a party and no one tells you.  You only thought what you were saying was funny…

…Anyway…back to my point.   God is kind of like my mentee.  He is the truth and what He says is the truth.  He also shares the truth with us because He loves us…which I would like to think my mentee was saying her comment out of love.  The questions is…do we want to hear it?  Or, do we want to ignore the truth and continue wearing pants that don’t flatter our rear because we can.  Let’s open our ears to hear His truth…even though it may not be want you want to hear, it’s truth worth listening to because He loves you.

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. – John 14:6


RomansI was reading through Romans 1 this morning and came across the last paragraph of the chapter.  In the second half of the chapter, Paul talks about those people who know about God’s love and have even experienced it, but instead choose wickedness: “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.” (Romans 1:21)

They began to worship man-made things rather than God’s glory and Paul says they turned themselves “over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.” (Romans 1:24)

In the final paragraph, Paul says that they did not feel it was “worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God,” so they filled themselves with wickedness, greed, evil, depravity, envy, murder, strife, deceit, and malice.  They became gossips and slanderers, insolent, arrogant, and boastful; they disobey their parents and are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless.  Paul concludes, saying, “Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.” (Romans 1:32)

It is amazing to me how we still do the same things today.  When we choose to sin, we are choosing to ignore the the knowledge of God.  We choose to seek after worldly things as though they will give us happiness, taking our attention away from the Lord.  It becomes easy to get caught up in the hustle of our world, and if we are not careful, we will turn our back on the Lord and take His knowledge for granted.  Our world tells us that all of those sinful desires are good, but His knowledge tells us otherwise.  The only way to know His knowledge is to make Him a priority and to seek after Him daily.  When we ignore His knowledge, we are just being plain ignorant, and that is our fault alone.

Christ: In Bits

With the growth of social media sites like Twitter and Facebook over the past several years, our world has become more and more connected to the internet and the instant information and gratification that it can provide.  We have instant access to the web whenever we want through tools like the iPhone and printed media is becoming more and more forgotten.   We seek out information on news, sports, and what our friends are currently doing.  In all of this, how often do we hit the web in an effort to seek after God?

The first English written bible was created in the 1380s, but bibles still remained in solitary locations, shared by the community.  Johannes Gutenberg created the printing press around 1440 and the bible was mass produced starting in the 1450s.  For nearly 560 years now, we have been using the bible in a strictly printed manner.

Today, printed text is on the decline as people rely on the web for their news and even books.  So where does this put the bible?  Why have we, the church, not pushed to move Christ more to the web over the past decade?

My immediate answer is that there is a fear of de-humanizing Christ or removing the relationship factor of fellowship.  People also like the comfort of having a physical bible in their hands with the ability to highlight and note certain passages.  I would argue that either of these things are possible through the web, if it is done the right way!  Converting the passages of Christ from the text of the page to the bits of the internet is no different from the initial transition from the oral tradition to the written scripture.  The initial transition was done so that the scripture was more readily available; the same result could come from a transition to the web.  We have all seen some pretty impressive sites that allow users to create personalized pages, so there is no reason that scripture should be any different.

Obviously, not all of us have the ability to go out and build a website, but we do have the ability to share Christ with others.  We can encourage our churches to begin the move to the web and even help design ways of sharing Christ with the world.

As we enter into this world of a constant changing internet, we, as Christians, must learn to keep up.  Many people will fight against the move to the web, in a fear that “we might leave the Lord behind.”  God will use whatever media He chooses to be glorified, now and forever: “Do you not know?  Have you not heard?  The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ENDS of the earth.” – Isaiah 40:28

Where are The Men?

There is an obvious lacking of men in church today.  When I say men, I mean men that are truly leaders that are seeking after God.  There are plenty of guys, but very few MEN who actually love the Lord and desire to lead according to His desires.

Too often, men come to church because they are tagging along.  They either come to find a girl or come to impress a girl.  Rarely do men make the decision to come to church on their own, and when they do, they get turned off by the lack of men with passion in the church.  The majority of activities and groups in a church are lead by women.  Just take a look at the women’s ministries in churches compared to the men’s ministries.

The church needs men with passion to serve the Lord!

Why do you think men appear weak in the church?

My Creed

I had the opportunity last spring to write a creed that states my beliefs of the Lord.  I have included it below.  Let me know what you think.

My Creed

I believe in one God, the almighty, omniscient, omnipresent Abba Father; spoken creator of all things seen and unseen, initiator of time, and designer of man in His own image, and in woman as the suitable helper for man.

I believe in Satan, the originator of Sin and manipulator of humankind such that we are born into sin and incapable of living without it, saved only by Jesus of Nazareth, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, and sent by God as His only Son that was the same substance of the Father, perfect and blameless without sin; a teacher and a prophet, who was falsely punished, abused, crucified, and buried under Pontius Pilate.  On the third day he arose from the dead as the Messiah, Christ, atoning for our sins and freely granting forgiveness to His children.  He stands as the bridegroom, serving His bride, the church, as an example of the marriage covenant.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and giver of life and essence of the Father and Son, breathed down at Pentecost as our mediator for Christ, empowering the one holy and apostolic church, inspiring the scripture, lived individually, but experienced in community through one baptism for remission of sins and the sharing of the Lord’s Table.

I believe in one salvation, through Jesus Christ, who will resurrect the dead to eternal life in His kingdom that has no end.

A Little About Me

Cris and I at a dinner with friends.

Cris and I at a dinner with friends.

I am a 25 year old who lives in Marietta, GA.  I currently work for Chick-fil-A’s corporate office and I am completing a Masters of Arts in Christian Ministries with a focus in Servant Leadership.  I am married to my best friend, Cris, and have enjoyed 2 and a half years with her as my bride.  We were married in May of 2007 at the church where we met in high school.

I have a passion for men to know more about God and step into their roles as leaders and husbands.  I am an IT geek at heart and have a desire to see the Lord intertwined with the gifts that we have on the internet.

Men Choose Death

As men we are called to love our wives and be servant leaders. We get hung up on authority and have a desire to serve ourselves over others.

For more examples of our roles as leaders, and specifically husbands, check out Men & Marriage.