Archive for September, 2014

The Messy Gospel

Posted: September 23, 2014 in Uncategorized
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I have become more and more convinced that the healthier a church becomes the messier it will appear. I get very concerned with the “perfect” churches that exist. If our goal is to look nice then we are missing the point of church.

The church that runs out of problems is no longer functioning as it should. When was the last time you saw a hospital that was not full of sick people? When was the last time you saw an emergency room that did not have a line?

I am not referring to Christians creating issues within their church. Rather I am talking about a constant influx of people who are hurting. Effectiveness in regards to sharing the Gospel will attract the sick, hurting and dying. Wherever Jesus went, He had people following Him. Why? For some they wanted to see Him do something neat. For others, they wished to be wowed by His oratory skills. Yet, there was always another group. It was those who were sick. It was those who were dying. It was those who had loved ones hovering at death’s door. Why were they there? Jesus had the ability to heal. He loved them. He saw them. He really saw them. He looked at them and was overwhelmed with compassion. He could not help Himself but to help them and offer hope. In fact His heart broke for these people.

The day, everybody is wearing only really nice dress clothes and there are no longer cigarette butts in our parking lots and no ripped jeans in our pews, we are in trouble. If the hurting never show up to our church we must ask why that is the case. Have we deterred the hurting people from coming into our churches.

It would unimaginable if a bunch of hospital employees got together for the sole purpose of heckling the sick and the dying when they showed up to a hospital. Imagine if you will that as people walked into the hospital these hecklers said things like, “you don’t fit in here”, “stop acting that way”, “you are too sick”, or “we don’t have time for you”. That would be irresponsible at best. Why? Well the hospital is where these people belong. The hospital exists to serve them.

Scripture tells us that Christ came to heal the sick. He tells us that it is the sick who need the help and not the healthy. We actually find His followers hindering children from coming to Him. Christ rebukes them sharply and then blesses the children. Another time we find a blind man crying out to Jesus only to be silenced by people who wanted an encounter with Jesus. In this case, Jesus called the blind man to Himself and healed him. There are countless stories like this in Scripture where the religious leaders of the day or Christ followers hindered people from coming to Jesus. It happened then and it happens now. Have we become like those hospital employees that heckle the sick and the dying? Have we treated people as if we and Jesus are too busy for them? Are their sins too repulsive? Jesus is never too busy and nothing is ever to repulsive that it will overwhelm grace.

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Is Fat Sin? Part 4

Posted: September 22, 2014 in Uncategorized
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Quite a bit of time has passed since I last made a post. I recognize that I had said I would include at least three more posts on this subject. They were specifically related to the topics of disrespect, examples, and sin. So here I am…

So what does the concept of disrespect have to do with this guys conviction about the weight I was beginning to pack on? Why would that been something that The Lord had convicted me on?

Let me start by saying that I am an incredibly blessed man. I have the blessing of being married to an incredibly beautiful, godly, hard working woman of my dreams. I can honestly say that a day does not go by without me thanking God for allowing me to have such an amazing wife. Not sure how I got her but it definitely is proof that prayer works. I definitely married up! Again, as I said before, all I can do is attribute it to is the power of prayer. (That being said, pray for my wife. Her husband is a bit rough around the edges).

As I said above, I am a blessed man. My wife is one of the most disciplined people I have ever met. She rises from bed long before the sun rises and exercises. She guards what goes into her body very carefully. I have long envied her discipline. She has at the same time over the years gently encouraged me to watch my diet and to get some exercise. While I lovingly would acknowledge her concerns and even validate them with my response, I never did anything. All the while, her alarm would go off and she would be doing her exercises while I laid in bed and dreamed about pizza and Chinese buffets.

As God convicted me this year of my food problem He revealed to me that I was being extremely disrespectful to my wife. She was working her tail off to look her best for me. She always looks her best when I get home at the end of a long day. I was making no effort. 1 Corinthians 7 makes it plenty clear that my body, as a husband, belongs to my wife. My responsibility was to take better care of myself so that I might better take care of her.

1 Corinthians 7 showed me that my lack of discipline was not just affecting my health but if left unchecked could very well affect my relationship. One of my responsibilities as a Christian husband is to take care of myself out of respect for my wife.

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