Monday, March 30, 2009

The Worst Of Sinners...

From CNN:
Kaing Guek Eav is an elderly former math teacher and a born-again Christian.He is also -- prosecutors contend -- a former prison chief with Cambodia's Khmer Rouge movement who oversaw the torture and killing of more than 15,000 men, women and children three decades ago.

Does it mess with our idea of "fairness" to think that a man who oversaw the torture and killing of 15,000 people will be in heaven? Does it mess with our sense of "decency" to know we will be worshiping Jesus in heaven standing next to a man who supervised the brutal murdering of children, women and men?

If it does, it reveals our own lack of understanding of our own depravity, and God's Holiness. And we need to listen again to the words of another murderer and former genocide leader, the Apostle Paul:

"I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service, though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief, and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life. To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen." (1 Tim 1: 12-17)

How Many Hours Does Your Staff Work?

Larry Osbourne offers some tips in thinking through that question. It was convicting and really encouraging to read. I commend all who are in ministry and on a church staff to check this out.

Here is a snip:
Bottom line: Wise leaders never forget that people and staff are hired because we have a job that needs to be done. As long as they aren’t poisoning the team, and as long as they do their job ethically with excellence, it really shouldn’t matter how they go about it or how many hours it takes. Quickly or methodically – in the office or at Starbucks – in the middle of the night or banker’s hours – all of these are secondary.

J.I. Packer Gives Some Great Wisdom

This short video from Packer is intended for new believers in Jesus Christ, but is timely advice for anyone who is in the family of God!

JI Packer Speaks To New Christians from Mike Anderson on Vimeo.

Props: Resurgence

Friday, March 27, 2009

1 Corinthians 1: 18-31

This past Sunday was my first time to do a sermon in front of our church. I am used to giving messages before a bunch of college students and 20 somethings, but this was my first time in the "big leagues" if you will. My one hope is that I got out of the way so that Jesus was the one who transformed and sent people to spread His name, not me.

Click here to listen to the message, I would love to hear feedback, good and bad, hopefully both with grace and love.

Driscoll on MacArthur

This post from The Resurgence speaks more of the humility and grace God has given Mark Driscoll than anything else. John MacArthur is a very good teacher and writer so I am not dismissing that. What is amazing is Driscoll's appreciation of a man who has been anything but appreciative of him. Maybe more than anything it shows Mark's love for Jesus and those who love and proclaim him and that is the love that overrides everything else!

Click on picture to read Mark's appreciation

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Where The Wild Things Are- Trailer

I loved this book as a kid and am stoked that it is now going to be a movie, and a legit looking one at that!

Props:The Film Stage

Monday, March 23, 2009

Funny, and Sad Cause It is True

Props: DeYoung

The Church: A Place To Belong

Jud Wilhite pastors a church in Las Vegas. Sin City! His article shows the heart of a pastor who wants people to know, believe and love Jesus. Click here for his article.

Here is an excerpt:

As the most spiritually mature person to ever live, Jesus stands as the model for what a spiritual life looks like. He remained approachable to outsiders and the hurting. His life reveals that the more spiritually mature I am, the more approachable I am to people who feel far from God. As spiritual maturity increases, approachability increases. It is a sad indictment that many outside the faith don't feel like they can approach Christians. In Jesus' day, some of the least approachable people were the religious leaders. They reeked of self-righteousness and judgment. Yet Jesus' life should give us pause:

Am I truly approachable to all kinds of people?
Is the church I belong to open to all kinds of people?
Do I have the compassion of Jesus for those who are hurting or disillusioned?
Does the church I serve have compassion?
Is our compassion evident to others?

These questions, and others like them, are ones that I'm asking more and more lately. The church I serve is far from perfect and we have plenty of room to improve in this area. I pray as we reflect on these questions we'll move toward being more part of the solution as we share God's uncensored grace in an uncompromising way. We'll create cultures of belonging where people can experience the life-changing message of Jesus.

Props: Catalyst

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Where Are The Young Men and Women?

"Where are the young men and women of this generation who will hold their lives cheap and be faithful even unto death? Where are those who will lose their lives for Christ's sake, flinging them away for love of him? Where are those who will live dangerously and be reckless in his service? . . . Where are the adventurers, the explorers, the buccaneers for God who count one human soul of far greater value than the rise or fall of an empire? . . . Where are God's men in this day of God's power?"

Howard Guinness, Sacrifice, pages 59-60.

Props: Ray Ortlund

Acts 29 St. Louis Boot Camp Audio

The topic of this conference looked really intriguing and now the audio is up for free. Go and check it out.

Click on picture to find audio.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Old Dead Guys Week-John Calvin

Click on picture to learn more about his awesome man of God:

Billy Graham is The Man

Whether you agree with all that Billy's theology or in his "altar call" method or not, Billy Graham when he spoke had the hand of God all over him. Check this out and tell me you don't get a little stoked and wanna "get outta your seat"

Props: Ray Ortlund

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

John Piper: Never Let The Gospel Get Smaller

What great wisdom from this man, may we learn and listen. Especially us in our 20's who sometimes get stoked on understanding culture, being "missional", and what can happen is we forget the main thing. That's what Piper is exhorting us to, to not ever lose sight of the main thing, in fact let the main thing take an even bigger stage in our life.

Here is what Piper says:

Here is a simple exhortation that I have been trying to implement in our family:

Seek to see and feel the gospel as bigger as years go by rather than smaller.

Our temptation is to think that the gospel is for beginners and then we go on to greater things. But the real challenge is to see the gospel as the greatest thing—and getting greater all the time.

The Gospel gets bigger when, in your heart,

  • grace gets bigger;
  • Christ gets greater;
  • his death gets more wonderful;
  • his resurrection gets more astonishing;
  • the work of the Spirit gets mightier;
  • the power of the gospel gets more pervasive;
  • its global extent gets wider;
  • your own sin gets uglier;
  • the devil gets more evil;
  • the gospel's roots in eternity go deeper;
  • its connections with everything in the Bible and in the world get stronger;
  • and the magnitude of its celebration in eternity gets louder.

So keep this in mind: Never let the gospel get smaller in your heart.

Pray that it won't. Read solid books on it. Sing about it. Tell someone about it who is ignorant or unsure about it.

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel.... For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures. (1 Corinthians 15:1-4)

We Will Not Become Europe

David Brooks a very gifted Opinion writer for the NY Times shares his thoughts on how America will never stray too far from our consumer, capitalistic nature, for better or worse.

Here is a quote:

Washington is temporarily at the center of the nation’s economic gravity and a noncommercial administration holds sway. This is an administration that has many lawyers and academics but almost no businesspeople in it, let alone self-made entrepreneurs. The president speaks passionately about education and health care reform, but he is strangely aloof from the banking crisis and displays no passion when speaking about commercial drive and success.

But if there is one thing we can be sure of, this pause will not last. The cultural DNA of the past 400 years will not be erased. The pendulum will swing hard. The gospel of success will recapture the imagination.

Click Here for the rest of the article

Old Dead Guys Week

The Resurgence is blogging this week about some men in Church history that you should know.

Click on Pictures Below to learn more about these fathers of the faith.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Saturday, March 14, 2009

A YouTube Orchestra

Check this out, some dude found a bunch of different YouTube vids and put them together and this is what!

Props:Blazing Center

Love Is Here

This video for some reason makes me think about what it means to be a city on a hill and light in darkness. You may not see it, but just the way the people look up to the rooftop in a kinda curious wonder, shouldn't that be what they do with the church?

Friday, March 13, 2009

Gospel for Busy Moms

The ladies over at Girl Talk offer some great tips for busy moms on how to keep the Gospel center in their often hectic, play-doh filled days.

Six Ideas for Preaching the Gospel to Yourself (for busy moms)

1. Take 15 minutes a day to read and re-read chapters from books on the gospel. The Discipline of Grace and The Gospel for Real Life by Jerry Bridges, Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die by John Piper, Living the Cross Centered Life by Dad, and books by Charles Spurgeon--all are great places to start.

2. Listen to Scripture throughout the day.

3. Listen to sermons online from your local church and biblical teachers. Even if it takes you a week to get through one sermon, you’ll benefit from the little bit you hear each day.

4. Memorize gospel Scriptures and gospel truths.

5. Write one gospel Scripture on a note card and post it where you’ll see it often or carry it in your pocket for review throughout the day.

6. Listen to gospel-centered music.

Are you a busy mom? First off my prayers are with you along with a huge portion of gratitude. Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones once spoke to a group of young pre-med students (all men). These men had apparently had a hard time staying in the Word and in other activites of Spiritual Disciplines. They complained about not having time. The Dr. told them that only one group has the right to use "lack of time" as a viable excuse, what was that group? Single moms.

Moms, do you need some great wisdom, go check out the Girl Talk Blog!

Thank God for the strength, patience and gentleness, God has given mothers.

Don't Give Up

Amen and amen to this!!!!!

For we are not to despair of anyone so long as the patience of God leads the ungodly to repentance, and does not seize him out of this life . . .
Augustine, Sermon LXXI, xiii, 21.

Have you given up on the conversion of your husband? Your child? Your relative? Your neighbor?

You must not do so. You do not know that God has done so. He/she may yet be converted. Perhaps on the death bed; perhaps before. But it is your task not to make a final judgment about anyone. God, alone, knows the heart.

Your task is, however, to keep on praying for him, to keep on witnessing to him, to keep on living a godly life before him.

Yes, I know it seems unlikely that he or she would ever believe. But didn’t it seem even more unlikely that Saul of Tarsus would become the apostle Paul?

Who are you to judge that the eternal destination of another will not be heaven—while the door to it still stands open? While the door stands open, your mind must as well.

No. If you have given up hope, it is time to renew it. Talk to the Lord about the matter. Tell Him you believe that His power is greater than any the evil one exerts over your unsaved friend. Beg Him to save him. Then tell Him you will be satisfied with the outcome.

Props: Institute of Nouthetic Studies

Friday Xtra-Psalm 22

Check out this cool vid. of a reading of Psalm 22.

Props: Collide

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Calvinism's Resurgence

Time Magazine has declared "The New Calvinism" as one of the top ten ideas changing modern thought. Men such as John Piper, Al Mohler and Mark Driscoll are named as some of the men in this "new" movement.

Click Here for the Time Magazine Article on Calvinism's resurgence.

And also check out some of Pastor Mark Driscoll's thoughts on this article. Click Here and Here for those thoughts.

Gay Marriage-A Compromise?

What do you think about this proposal and the comments by Misty Irons over at "More Musings on Christianity, Homosexuality and the Bible"?
Check out this op-ed piece in Sunday's NY Times co-authored by David Blankenhorn and Jonathan Rauch, two people who have sharply disagreed about gay civil marriage in the past. Here is their proposed compromise:
Congress would bestow the status of federal civil unions on same-sex marriages and civil unions granted at the state level, thereby conferring upon them most or all of the federal benefits and rights of marriage. But there would be a condition: Washington would recognize only those unions licensed in states with robust religious-conscience exceptions, which provide that religious organizations need not recognize same-sex unions against their will. The federal government would also enact religious-conscience protections of its own. All of these changes would be enacted in the same bill.

So the federal government would recognize civil same-sex unions, but would only recognize state level civil unions on the condition that religious conscience protections are in place. In other words, only if religious organizations get to retain the right to discriminate against civil same-sex unions will such unions be recognized at the state level by the U.S. government.

What I like about this idea is that it makes a rigorous respect for religious freedom the condition for granting gays and lesbians their legal rights, so that the freedoms and protections of both groups are tied together. Furthermore, if there were significant gay support for such a proposal, it would undercut the religious right's claim that the sole political agenda of the majority of gays is to trash the rights
Before dismissing this, or jumping on the Prop. 8 bandwagon, let me encourage you to go check out Misty's Blog, she has some really great insights and wisdom when it comes to loving, understanding and engaging homosexuals.

Guess Who's Back

Change is Supposed to Happen in Marriage

"Few things have a greater transforming impact on a husband or a wife than the long-suffering, forgiving sacrifices of love in the spouse. There is a place for confrontation. There is a place for pursuing conformity to Christ in the covenant of marriage. Life is not all forgiveness and forbearance. Real change can happen. Real change ought to happen. Christ died to make it happen. And he calls us, husbands and wives, to love like that." (John Piper, This Momentary Marriage-A Parable of Permanence, pg. 70)

Click here to go to to get PDF of this book.


Here for to purchase book copy.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

C.S. Lewis on Real Life Interruptions

C.J. Mahaney has been talking about Biblical Productivity over at his blog. In his latest installment he discusses Scheduling the Unexpected. He also shares this convicting quote by C.S. Lewis on how we view these interruptions that are sometimes quite unpleasant.
"The great thing, if one can, is to stop regarding all the unpleasant things as interruptions of one’s “own,” or “real” life. The truth is of course that what one calls the interruptions are precisely one’s real life—the life God is sending one day by day; what one calls one’s “real life” is a phantom of one’s own imagination. This at least is what I see at moments of insight: but it’s hard to remember it all the time." The Quotable Lewis (Wheaton, IL.: Tyndale House Publishers, 1989), 335.
Props: Sovereign Grace Blog

Marriage and The Wrath of God

"A profound understanding and fear of God’s wrath is exactly what many marriages need, because without it, the gospel is diluted down to mere human relations and loses its biblical glory. Without a biblical view of God’s wrath, you will be tempted to think that your wrath—your anger—against your spouse is simply too big to overcome, because you have never really tasted what it is like to see an infinitely greater wrath overcome by grace, namely, God’s wrath against you." (John Piper, This Momentary Marriage-A Parable of Permanence, pg. 44-45)

Click here to go to to get PDF of this book.


Here for to purchase book copy.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

John Piper: What is Marriage

“Marriage is patterned after Christ’s covenant relationship to his redeemed people, the church. And therefore, the highest meaning and the most ultimate purpose of marriage is to put the covenant relationship of Christ and his church on display. That is why marriage exists. If you are married, that is why you are married. If you hope to be, that should be your dream.” (John Piper, This Momentary Marriage-A Parable of Permanence, pg. 25)
Click here to go to to get PDF of this book.


Here for to purchase book copy.

Husbands Protect Their Wives

Here is one more video to help prepare for tonight @ The Well. It is from Mark Driscoll.

iMonk on the Collapse of Evangelism

Thanks to my friend Mark for sending this link.

I do not always agree with Michael Spencer aka internetmonk, but on this topic I think he has a lot of good insight. Spencer shares reasons for the prediction he has for a coming collapse of evangelicalism in the U.S. and the fall out that will occur, all of which is not that bad. There was one paragraph that really stood out to me that I adamantly agree with, it is sad but so true.

The evangelical investment in moral, social, and political issues has depleted our resources and exposed our weaknesses. Being against gay marriage and being rhetorically pro-life will not make up for the fact that massive majorities of Evangelicals can't articulate the Gospel with any coherence. We fell for the trap of believing in a cause more than a faith.
Click here for the rest of this provocative article

American Christianity today is more about what we are against in politics and morality than the person and work of Jesus Christ. We are more passionate about winning someone to our cause whether it be anti-gay marriage or pro-life. I am very pro-life, but that cannot be the Christians soapbox, or mission, we should protect the lives of the innocent, but this has to be an outpouring of the truth of Jesus.

Our first and primary mission is to share the good news of Jesus Christ. Sadly we have lost that and have become more passionate about legislating morality and turning America back to "Christian Nation" which we never were by the way.

Disagree with me?

That is ok, let me ask you this, when is the last time you shared the gospel with someone? When is the last time you argued against a cause? Which one do you do more often?

Maybe a better question, do you know the cause you are against and can articulate that better than the gospel of Jesus Christ??

(Disclaimer: This is not a plea to stop activism against abortion, I think we should by word and deed talk out against this mass murder of babies and be passionate about adoption. Like my boy Z and his friend JT are. What I am pleading for is an understanding of what comes first and most importantly, Jesus and His name and work being known.)

John Piper - Marriage: Be Eager to Serve Each Other

Tonight at The Well I am talking about how marriage is from Jesus, about Jesus, reliant on Jesus and ultimately for Jesus. I thought this video from John Piper is a fitting preview for tonight.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Brayden!!

Our little boy turns 1 year old today. I am trying to start a tradition of writing my kids letters on their birthdays, so they can look back and see how dad has prayed for them and instructed them to the glory of King Jesus. Here is letter 1 for Brayden:
My little man, I cannot begin to speak of the blessing you have been from Jesus into our family. Your smile, your adventurous spirit and loving nature brings a warmth to our home that is truly from our Lord. I pray daily for your salvation, that your heart would one day treasure, trust and love Jesus above anything and everyone else, including your mom and me! Even now at just 1 year of age your sinful nature comes through at times, that reminds me of all of our desperate need for redemption and saving from God’s wrath and right judgment. That is what Jesus did for us on the cross and through His resurrection, He calls us to trust in that and to love Him and follow Him. That is what my prayers are for you and your big sister Jordyn!

I also think of the man you are becoming. The husband you may one day be. I pray that as I imitate Jesus in how I treat your mom, you will see an example worth following. I pray that you will learn to protect and defend all women. That you will see your call as a man is to lead, and serve with love, gentleness and strength. Your dad is not perfect, he is on a journey to seek and love Jesus more daily and at times I fail, and must preach the beautiful news of Jesus to myself and push forward. I pray that in the good times and in those times of failure, the love, steadfastness and hope you see is not in dad, but in Jesus.

I love you son, you are a blessing and gift from Jesus. Happy Birthday, and I look forward to many more if the Lord so chooses!



This conference looks legit...

Go to for more info.

Procrastination and Youth

The dudes over at The Rebelution shared this video and offer some great wisdom about being young and fighting procrastination.

Here is a quote from the Harris Brothers at Rebelution:

When are you going to get your stuff done? Procrastination can sabotage more than a day’s work. Too many of us also procrastinate in much bigger areas of life — things like growing in responsibility, maturity and in our relationship with Christ.

For young people this can be expressed in the phrase: Life starts later. Life begins after high school, after college, later, someday, but not now. We view the teen years as a vacation from responsibility, a time to goof off and have fun. We’re like athletes, lounging poolside, not realizing the game has already started.

And you see, what bothers us when young people die is that we think they somehow didn’t have a chance to live. But that’s only because we’ve bought into the lie that life doesn’t start until after you’re married with kids.

Calvin on Perspective

John Calvin helps to provide a little perspective:

"If, at mid-day, we either look down to the ground, or on the surrounding objects which lie open to our view, we think ourselves endued with a very strong and piercing eyesight; but when we look up to the sun, and gaze at it unveiled, the sight which did excellently well for the earth is instantly so dazzled and confounded by the refulgence, as to oblige us to confess that our acuteness in discerning terrestrial objects is mere dimness when applied to the sun. Thus too, it happens in estimating our spiritual qualities. So long as we do not look beyond the earth, we are quite pleased with our own righteousness, wisdom, and virtue; we address ourselves in the most flattering terms, and seem only less than demigods. But should we once begin to raise our thoughts to God, and reflect what kind of Being he is, and how absolute the perfection of that righteousness, and wisdom, and virtue, to which, as a standard, we are bound to be conformed, what formerly delighted us by its false show of righteousness will become polluted with the greatest iniquity; what strangely imposed upon us under the name of wisdom will disgust by its extreme folly; and what presented the appearance of virtuous energy will be condemned as the most miserable impotence." (Institutes of the Christian Religion, Book 1, Chapter 1.2)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Jesus' Agenda, Not Ours.

“We all have our own agendas for Jesus, just as the apostles had for Him. He, however, has an agenda for us. His agenda is power for us to be living, speaking testimonies for Him to an unbelieving world, power to love our enemies, power to bless those who curse us, power to forgive as He forgives us, power to love one another. This is the coming of the kingdom that He has in mind for us now. The other kind of power will come later; but that is the power He exercised in His own death on the cross, and it is the power He gives us. There is no other power for the church or for the Christian now.” (Jerram Barrs, The Heart of Evangelism, pg. 20)

UNM Lobos 2009 MWC Champs!!!!


Saturday, March 7, 2009

Mark Driscoll: Sharing The Gospel With Your Tip

I could not agree more with Pastor Mark on this topic. If you go out to eat on Sunday's after church, tip well!!!

He Rules...He Triumphs...He Defeats...

I have been so convicted recently the lack of evangelism in my life. If Jesus is my treasure why am I so reluctant to share His message? Why do I get so nervous and shy away from telling people about Jesus, who He is and what He has done? Obviously my own sin and flesh are constantly battling against me in this, and are more intent on stopping that message from going out than any other. That however does not excuse me from shying away from declaring the message of the cross.

Currently I am re-reading Jerram Barrs book “The Heart of Evangelism” and find this book to be encouraging and insightful. Barrs is a professor at Covenant Theological Seminary and was my professor in the area of Apologetics and Outreach. He is a teacher for pastors, in which I mean he is more concerned that we love people, care and have compassion than that we know all the theological jargon. I am not dismissing that stuff and Barrs is very solid biblically, but his emphasis is on the pastor’s role in leading out Evangelism through love, hospitality and boldness.

In the first chapter of his book, Barrs reminds us of what Jesus told the disciples in Matt. 28: 16-20:

“Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’” ESV

What Barrs reminds us, is that it is not us who have conquered, or are the ones with the power, it is Jesus. That Jesus is reminding them that because He has all the authority and will be with them, these poor, raggged fisherman will be able to go out and spread this message and start a movement. In times of shyness or reluctance to share, I need to remind and preach that to myself.

Here is a quote from Barrs:
“But Jesus also gave them some comforting words (they needed them!). He told them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.’ He rules the unseen world of the spirits. He triumphs over the demons. he defeats the false gods of the nations and breaks their poer so that His disciples are able to go out into the world with confidence.” (Pg. 16-17)

Click here to buy this great resource and encouragement.