Archive for September, 2015

Source: Flying around the World…on Solar Power Our intensity should be as strong as the significance of our pursuit.

I have flown as far as it is from Florida to Taiwan. It took some time but I can’t imagine flying around the world. But then if you mentioned it would be on solar power…I might have auctioned off my ticket. But this feat is exactly what motivates some people to risk it all for the reward of accomplishment.

What does our effort really look like when it comes to Mark 16:15-sharing the gospel with the whole world or Matthew 28:19 & 20-teaching people to practice everything Jesus did? This “responsibility” or maybe a better word “joy” is ours, and not only for those God puts into their hearts to be involved in “full time” Christian vocations.

Our world probably consists of a few neighbors within shouting of our home or apartment. It includes those who we work with on our job and probably some group who share our interest in some hobby or recreational activity.

God wants what is on his heart to be what is on ours. Nothing else counts. Everything we do that God puts on our heart is significant. But we must “have boots on the ground” or our intensity of commitment will be correctly questioned.

What this means: If your intensity is less than it should be, maybe your pursuit is not significant. What you mostly talk about with friends or acquaintances reveals most accurately what is significant to you. What’s that look like? Are you willing to pray “God, put on my heart what is on yours?” See if you really would ask God to make Psalm 73:25 real in your life. The Word on the Street concludes that verse with “…nothing here on earth’s worth a second view!”

Some things are just plain strange. The “Burning Man” event held annually in the Nevada desert could easily qualify as not being normal. Most people would avoid that event without even thinking about it. Most people have never heard of it. In this case, “normal” might be looked at as acceptable.

However, when our church plans an event to help others in some serving way, many don’t mind taking a Saturday (until the football game begins at 5), to help out. This is just a one time deal or maybe a once in a while thing that doesn’t require me changing my schedule too much. It is “tacked on” and has not become “the fabric of my life.” I can return to a normal way of life after the event. And the worse part is that I feel good about “doing my part of helping others.”

Contrast that with how Paul’s “normal” looked in 2 Timothy 3:10 & 11. The normal life for Paul and for us as well should be looked at as when we live life together rather than occasionally. Look at what Paul was able to demonstrate to Timothy by doing this together-his manner of life, direction, faith, steadiness, love, patience, troubles, sufferings in various locations, how God rescued him…

What this means: We should be careful in wanting to have a “normal” life that looks like everybody else. We need to remember that Jesus was the most counter-cultural person that ever walked on the planet…hmm, I wonder what following him means in that regard? Be careful in defining “normal” based on our culture rather than Jesus’ lifestyle.

The Burj Khalifa in the U.A.E. is the world’s tallest building. It towers over everything else in the world. It was fascinating to watch the progress of this being built. If you look at it now, you see nothing of the infrastructure hidden by the gleaming tower. It is there, but invisible.

In the developing of disciples who make disciples, much time, teaching and modeling is necessary from a community of people God has gifted differently. It is like the infrastructure that is hidden. All that is seen, if properly done is a maturing and effective disciple maker. Ephesians 4:11-14 speaks to this. One of the main equipping aspects of this is the Word of God. 2 Timothy 3:16 & 17 in The Word on the Street says “…the instruction Manual (God’s Word) is the only book for you.” The Message says about the Bible “…showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way…”

The Burj is something to stare at but a follower of Jesus who has been equipped as God’s warrior for the 21st century, who not only knows how to love God and people, but also is taking their part in making disciples is really something to see. The world takes notice, is curious and maybe ready to see if this Christian stuff is real.

What this means: Do you know whether you have been equipped to make disciples? Where could you get some help in developing the gifts God placed in you and begin to help others follow Jesus? What changes would you have to make to see this begin?

Source: Getting Real…Quick To get from how things are to how they should be requires courageous persistent honesty.

Your doubt always seems to win over your desire for taking that trip, you become expert in giving reasons why you couldn’t get involved with “those” people, and you just can’t stop staring at…you know.

We must admit that fear not doubt is the real thief and we really don’t like “those” people because they “can’t be trusted”, and well, a man can’t help himself (or a woman) for staring…right?

The deeper issue is that we are not motivated to totally follow a holy God who can’t let us take the trip with him unless we get brutally honest with ourselves and others. It’s always refreshing to be in the presence of someone who has resolved this issue and is honest to the core. It can scare the hell out of us (if we’re honest). Just using the “h” word may stop some of you from continuing to read this. I hope not.

Romans 6:1 & 2 are as loud as Paul could say it. To make this change and stop messing up big time, we must get honest with ourselves. 1 Corinthians 15:34 also speaks strongly to us about this. Do we really want to deal with the junk in our lives that not only offend a holy God but keep others from having any interest in checking out how God might fit into life? It could be implied in Ephesians 5:13 & 14 that one thing that exposes the lies people live by is honesty. Honesty brings light and refreshment to a conversation. Things go from boring to scary but exciting when honesty enters the house.

What this means: Be honest, do you really want to please God with your life? How do you know? How does anybody else know? What would you have to change in your communication with people for you to be remembered as a honest man or woman?