Our Effect on Time

The past, even an instant ago, is unchangeable!
It is only in the instant of the present that we can do anything!
The only affect we can have on the future is what we do now!

Posted by gary in Spiritual Life, Things I've Learned, 0 comments

Faith

“Faith is not intelligent understanding, faith is deliberate commitment to a Person where I see no way.” Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, March 28.

Posted by gary in Bible Studies, Devotionals, Spiritual Life, 0 comments

Growing In Grace

“Never let God give you one point of truth that you don’t immediately live up to it.” – Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest, March 27.

Posted by gary in Bible Studies, Devotionals, Spiritual Life, 0 comments
No Mere Mortals

No Mere Mortals

Concluding a sermon in 1941 entitled “The Weight of Glory”, C.S. Lewis said:

“Meanwile the cross comes before the crown and tomorrow is a Monday morning. A cleft has opened in the pitiless walls of the world, and we are invited to follow our great Captain inside. The following Him is, of course, the essential point. That being so, it may be asked what practical use there is in the speculations which I have been indulging. I can think of at least one such use. It may be possible for each to think too much of his own potential glory hereafter; it is hardly possible for him to think too often or too deeply about that of his neighbour. The load, or weight, or burden of my neighbour’s glory should be laid on my back, a load so heavy that only humility can carry it, and the backs of the proud will be broken. It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you say it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations — these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendours. This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously — no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption. And our charity must be a real and costly love, with deep feeling for the sins in spite of which we love the sinner — no mere tolerance, or indulgence which parodies love as flippancy parodies merriment. Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object presented to your senses. If he is your Christian neighbour, he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat [truly hides]- the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden.”

From The Weight of Glory: And Other Addresses, C.S. Lewis.

Posted by gary in Bible Studies, Devotionals, Evangelism, Quotes, 0 comments

The Message of Scripture

What I think God is trying to tell us in Scripture

My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are my ways your ways, (Isaiah 55:8)
but here’s what I want you to know:

  • I designed you
  • I planned you
  • I made you
  • I love you
  • I like you
  • I want you
  • I care about you
  • I bought you
  • I forgave you
  • I am with you
  • I have more for you
  • Trust me

Also,

  • I know what I am doing.
  • I can do anything.
  • I’m not trying to confuse you – that’s the devil.
  • I want you to have peace.
  • I want you to have joy.
  • My plan is from an eternal perspective.
      • It may involve pain,
        • But only enough to accomplish my purpose in you.
          • If that’s only to teach you something, the pain will end when you learn it.
          • If there is more, I’ll help you to endure it.
            • It may be to learn how to comfort someone else.
      • Please trust me.
        • That’s your only way to peace through all this.

BTW,

  • If you’re having a tough time – and accepting all this is difficult for you – please understand that it is all still true and applies to you.
  • But you also need to know that I don’t accept invitations to Pity Parties.
    • That’s why such get-togethers are so lonely,
    • And they only make things worse.
Posted by gary in Bible Studies, Spiritual Life, 0 comments

1 Peter 1-3 in a Nutshell

As children of God and citizens of Heaven you are living for now in a foreign land as strangers and aliens. This world is not your home. It is not where your citizenship lies. Your citizenship is in Heaven and your true residence is securely established there.

You shouldn’t think it unusual or unexpected that you are being treated as illegals that don’t belong here.

While you are here, remember who you are and why you are here. Be holy – just like your heavenly Father is holy. While “in Rome” don’t act like the Romans.

Instead, live like the citizens of Heaven you really are – representing the social order of your own country – so that the native people of this land will see your example and might be brought to Christ.

This means that you are not to respond to their abuse as they expect: with malice, deceit, hypocrisy, envy or slander. It affects how you interact with authority, whether that is government, a master, or a husband and how you treat those over whom you might have authority. Your goal should be to live your lives in such a way that they attract questions about your homeland and provide you with an opportunity to give a reason for the hope that is in you. So be prepared with answers.

…………. Key verses: (2:11-12) “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against your souls. Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation.“

Posted by gary in Bible Studies, 0 comments
Double Sunrise and Band of Brothers

Double Sunrise and Band of Brothers

I saw the sunrise twice this morning!
How did you manage that, you ask? No, I wasn’t in a plane; I didn’t pass through a time warp; It was a clear morning. I was on my way to Band of Brothers in Irvine, CA.

Before I explain how I experienced this priviledge let me share a few of the quotables from this morning’s Band of Brothers:

A visiting missionary to Muslims said: “Many people know we are Christians, but few know why we are Christians.”

Sam Parsons, in his prayer: “You are Lord and we are not. It’s taken some of us a long time to figure that out.”

Pete McKenzie:
“We live in a honkin-at-your-own-tail-lights culture.”
“‘Hanging in there’ is good theology.”
“Lord, help yourself to my life.”
“Winners take responsibility. Losers blame others.”
“The bad thing about a pity party is that God doesn’t show up.”
“When the crisis comes and courage is required, God expects His men to have such confidence in Him that they will be the dependable ones.” (Oswald Chambers)

OK – the Double Sunrise: Traveling south down the 405 freeway, passing by John Wayne Airport I noticed the sun rising just to the north of the Saddleback mountains (Santiago and Trabuco Peaks). From my perspective as I continued south, the sun set behind Saddleback, rising a second time along the south edge of Trabuco Peak. So I got to experience the sunrise twice this morning. Cool, huh? (Well I think so.)

Posted by gary in Journal, 0 comments

New Links

I’ve just added a new category for Men’s Ministry with links to two sources of discipleship ministries for men.
Patrick Morley, (Man in the Mirror), has a weekly Bible Study that is broadcast every Friday morning. Past videos and audio files are available through the link.
Band of Brothers is a Friday morning gathering of men who meet for fellowship, worship and a message from Pete McKenzie. If you are a man living near Irvine, California and are available on Friday mornings between 7 and 8, I would like to encourage you to join us. Directions are available on the website.

I’ve posted a link to the Band of Brothers site (Influencers West) as well as a direct link to an index of messages given by Pete.

Posted by gary in Notes & Comments, 0 comments

A god We Want, and the God Who Is

“There is a God we want, and there is a God who is and they are not the same God. The turning point of our lives is when we stop seeking the God we want and start seeking the God who is.” – – Patrick Morley

Posted by gary in Apologetics, Quotes, Spiritual Life, 0 comments