Sunday, February 28, 2010

Let's not just study and teach. Let's teach to study.

Great post by Matt Batterson! Here's the intro:
I think my preaching paradigm is shifting. I've always believed that as a preacher I'm called to study the word and teach the word, but that is changing as our congregation reads through the Bible together. My job is NOT to just study and teach the Bible. My job is to teach our congregation to study the Bible. That is a subtle yet huge difference. The prior approach leads to spiritual codependency. The latter leads to spiritual maturity.
Check out the rest and be challenged whether you're a preacha' or not. This is for all Christ-followers!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Used Book Sale in June

Charleston Friends of the Library Great book sale happens in Oct. each year. Apparently, they're doing one Jun 19-20 too! http://www.charlestonlibraryfriends.org/

Friday, February 19, 2010

What message(s) are you sending when you answer?

I love technology. It's cool, fun and often makes me more productive. I can do so much more than I ever could and I can do it quickly.

But it also slows me down.

The older I get the more I realize that I'm more productive when I don't multi-task. There's real power in focused attention. It makes sense too. Focused light is called a laser beam. And that can cut steel. Diffused or broadly focused light is, well, a flashlight.

So my next several posts will be about this. I'm going to do this by interacting with Sam Duregger's article "Practically Unplugged". Should be fun and I look forward to your comments on it.

Sam writes,

Set boundaries on smartphone use. When you’re at dinner with your significant other or friends — try to be present, forget about updating your foursquare status with pictures of your veal parmesan.

Not much irritates me like someone taking a cell phone call while meeting with me over lunch. I'm not talking about a call from his wife or an important call he warned me about. I'm talking about picking up the ringing phone, looking at who's calling and then deciding that it's more important than the conversation we're having face-to-face. Especially when he invited me!

Technology is supposed to serve us--not the other way around. When someone takes a call that interrupts a conversation, they send another message (intended or not) to the person that they're with: Your time isn't very important to me.

We'll talk about those who talk on their phones in public restrooms another day...sheesh!

Do you own your phone, or does it own you? #dontneedtoprayaboutthatone

The entire article at Collide Magazine here

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Love & War: Book Summary

I am sharing this book with you to consider: especially if you are married! I love books where both voices are heard. (both are more accountable) Should be an interesting read! Darien

What the Eldredge bestsellers Wild at Heart did for men, and Captivating did for women, LOVE & WAR will do for married couples everywhere. John and Stasi Eldredge have contributed the quintessential works on Christian spirituality through the experience of men and the experience of women and now they turn their focus to the incredible dynamic between those two forces.  
With refreshing openness that will grab readers from the first page, the Eldredges candidly discuss their own marriage and the insights they’ve gained from the challenges they faced. Each talks independently to the reader about what they’ve learned, giving their guidance personal immediacy and a balance between the male and female perspectives that has been absent from all previous books on this topic.   They begin LOVE & WAR with an obvious but necessary acknowledgement:  Marriage is fabulously hard.  They advise that the sooner we get the shame and confusion off our backs, the sooner we'll find our way through.  
LOVE & WAR shows couples how to fight for their love and happiness, calling men and women to step into the great adventure God has waiting for them together. Walking alongside John and Stasi Eldredge, every couple can discover how their individual journeys are growing into a story of meaning much greater than anything they could do or be on their own.

Note: WaterBrook Multnomah did provide this book to me to read and post this week. Darien

Monday, February 08, 2010

Show us how to die to self

This prayer concludes ch. 3 in Tozer's book The Pursuit of God online:

Lord, how excellent are Your ways, and how devious and dark are the ways of man. Show us how to die, that we may rise again to newness of life. Rend the veil of our self-life from the top down as You did rend the veil of the Temple. We would draw near in full assurance of faith. We would dwell with You in daily experience here on this earth so that we may be accustomed to the glory when we enter Your heaven to dwell with You there. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

It's about Justice

IJM 2010 Advocacy Day from International Justice Mission on Vimeo.

Join fellow advocates from around the country to learn how you can mobilize others in your community and influence policy-makers at the national level to end modern-day slavery. Participants in Monday’s Day of Action on Capitol Hill will partner with other advocates from their state to meet with Members of Congress and their staff.


  • Advocacy Training: Sunday, April 11$10
  • Day of Action on Capitol Hill: Monday, April 12Free (space limited)


The Advocacy Training on April 11 will be held at the Sheraton Premiere at Tyson's Corner, the same location as IJM's Global Prayer Gathering earlier that weekend. We have arranged for a discounted group rate of $114 per night through March 30.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

And there shall be no night there: A prayer of surrender

I am praying this prayer as well out of Tozier's book The Pursuit of God. This one is at the end of chapter 2:

Father, I want to know Thee, but my cowardly heart fears to give up its toys. I cannot part with them without inward bleeding, and I do not try to hide from Thee the terror of the parting. I come trembling, but I do come. Please root from my heart all those things which I have cherished so long and which have become a very part of my living self, so that Thou may enter and dwell there without a rival. Then shall Thou make the place of Thy feet glorious. Then shall my heart have no need of the sun to shine in it, for Thyself will be the light of it, and there shall be no night there. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Angels: New book by David Jeremiah

I've always loved reading or listening to Pastor David Jeremiah. He has such a great reputation and track record as a godly leader. So it should come as no surprise that I would recommend his latest book to you. Darien

Book Summary:

What are angels? What is their role in God’s plan? Are they present? Do they appear? Do they give us personal insight about our work, our worship?

Many contemporary beliefs about angels are based on misconception and myth. Dr. David Jeremiah uses scripture to unveil the remarkable truth about these agents of heaven, and their role and work in our world—and lives.

More than 60,000 units of this powerful book have sold in two past editions. This repackage of the original 1996 paperback will surely capture the attention of readers of all ages who seek a broad and thorough survey of scripture that clearly separates fact from fiction as it relates to angels. The book will appeal to the thousands who follow Dr. Jeremiah’s books, and radio and TV broadcasts.

Relevant, little known biblical facts help readers sharpen their knowledge and sensitivities toward the spiritual reality of angels. Dr. Jeremiah’s enlightening findings are supported with illustrations and insights from Billy Graham, Corrie ten Boom, C.S. Lewis, and more.

Author Bio:
Dr. David Jeremiah is senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in San Diego, and founder of Turning Point Radio and TV Ministries. His radio program is carried on over 2,500 stations worldwide, while the TV broadcast is received by 500 million homes via cable and satellite. The recipient of numerous awards for broadcast excellence, his books have garnered Gold Medallion awards and become bestsellers with The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and theNew York Times. He is a sought-after conference speaker by organizations nationwide.

Note: This book was provided for me from the publisher for free. Darien

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Would Jesus watch the Super Bowl?

When I asked my daughters this question, one quickly answered, "Yes! And he'd pull for the Saints!"

As someone without cable, dish or power, (okay, we have power) when talk of the Big Game* happens around this time of year, I'm always listening closely to see who's having a Big Bowl party and how big their plasma is. Then I just show up and check out the snack bar...

Anyway, back to Jesus and the Sup...errHuge Bowl. Would Jesus watch the Super Game? When the guys who will watch the game are talking about this, they typically say one of two things:

1. I am having a party or going to a party to watch the game. Should be fun! Or, 

2. I want to stay home and watch it by myself so that I can really watch the game. It's just too crazy to watch the game at a Supe...whoops, party. (I'll admit, that when I'm completely honest, this is my preference unless the Lions are playing the Browns. Oh wait, they've never been to the Sooper Bowl...)

Now I am convinced that unless providentially hindered** Jesus would watch the game with other people. I say this to help myself justify watching the game. No, not really. I say this because we find Jesus was criticized for going to parties with all kinds of people of ill repute. 

Notice he wasn't hosting the parties. Nor was he home partying with his disciples (Can you say, "Holy Huddle?"). No, Jesus was at the party for how he could impact and bless others. 

And we should be too.

So as you consider where you'll watch the Super Game, I hope you'll keep that perspective in mind. And then invite your friends (not just your Christian friends either) over for a Super-sized Bowl game party.

Oh yeah, I like those lime chip thingys... 

* Officially we can't use the term "Super Bowl" without express written permission from NFL (No Fun League?)

** Required to meet minimum big word requirement for seminary graduates blogging on matters of great import.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

I hate this!

I hate human trafficking. Kidnapping children and forcing them into slavery (sometimes prostitution) to make a buck. I hate it. I picture one of my girls being kidnapped and taken to another country for this reason and it makes me want to curl up in a ball and die. It's sickening.

God calls us in Micah 6:8 to "Act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with our God." Well, here is one easy way to do that.

That's part of what Jesus means when he says to his followers, "Let your light shine."

I just took action today urging President Obama to fight human trafficking. I'm asking you to take action yourself and spread the word!

To take action on this issue, click on the link below:
If the text above does not appear as a link or it wraps across multiple lines, then copy and paste it into the address area of your browser.

Give me Grace to Rise & Follow Thee

I'm reading AW Tozier's The Pursuit of God. His prayer at the end of chapter 1 is mine today as well:

O God, I have tasted Thy goodness, and it has both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more. I am painfully conscious of my need of further grace. I am ashamed of my lack of desire. O God, the Triune God, I want to want Thee; I long to be filled with longing; I thirst to be made more thirsty still. Show me Thy glory, I pray Thee, that so I may know Thee indeed. Begin in mercy a new work of love within me. Say to my soul, Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away." Then give me grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wandered so long. In Jesus'' name. Amen.