Monday, December 30, 2013

I Am Unique

used under creative commons license, image by Alexey Kljatov
The title came from seeing the photos of Alexey Kljatov.  He does snowflake photography, catching the variety and the beauty.  And that highlights a thought that came out of the holiday season.

Here we are, between Christmas and New Year's Eve.  To some degree, we're all running around with visits, returns, and fitting all our normal stuff in, besides.  We may end up feeling like one of those mice  or hamsters on a wheel.  And, even more than hectic, we can feel anything but unique.

The problem with those feelings is that they aren't just around the holidays.  Many lose sight, all year long, of what God thinks of them.  Or they might not even realize at all that God does think about them.

Friday, December 27, 2013

What Do We Accept?

Photo (c) Lloyd Morgan
A friend of mine wrote a recent post based on a quote by Rick Warren, “Our culture has accepted two huge lies. The first is that if you disagree with someone’s lifestyle, you must fear or hate them. The second is that to love someone means you agree with everything they believe or do. Both are nonsense. You don’t have to compromise convictions to be compassionate.”  That was followed by a quote from an unknown author, “A lie doesn’t become truth, wrong doesn’t become right, and evil doesn’t become good, just because it’s accepted by a majority.”  Contrast that with "Vice is now using 'tolerance' to bludgeon virtue, and virtue is currently losing." from a post a day later.  And that was followed by another friend posting a great study on judging.  I'm not going to presume that each had something to do with any of the others.  But the combination had me feeling like the guy in that picture.  There's really are no coincidences, only new insights into the heart of God.  Let's take a look.

Monday, December 23, 2013

The One and Only Child

The last couple of weeks, we've been talking about children, being child-like, and being childish.  All of those possibilities fit how we, as humans, can be.  One of the things that's really clear is that Jesus had an appreciation for children and child-like qualities.  I think the Christmas season gives us an answer why.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Happy Child or Joyous Child?

licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by anyjazz65
In the last two posts, we talked about the children of God.  Being child-like in our faith, that there are two levels of the relationship, and the stability of the relationship.  The more I think about that, there always seems to be more.  So, let's explore further.

Friday, December 13, 2013

His Children

cc licensed ( BY NC SA ) flickr photo by Seema Krishnakumar:
Mark 10:13-16 (KJV)  And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them.  But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.  Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.  And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.  

That's the passage we spoke about on Monday.  We were pretty thorough.  But there's more to consider.

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Little Children

cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by Steve Slater

Mark 10:13-16 (NKJV)  Then they brought little children to Him, that He might touch them; but the disciples rebuked those who brought them.  But when Jesus saw it, He was greatly displeased and said to them, "Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of God.  Assuredly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will by no means enter it."  And He took them up in His arms, put His hands on them, and blessed them.
I’ve been thinking about that passage and, yesterday morning, one of our staff pastors used it in his introduction.  The combination of what Pastor Brian Lange had to say, and the direction God took my thoughts, is worth considering.  

Friday, December 6, 2013

Within Us

“When it is the real deal the rod has buds on it. Like Aaron's rod did (Numbers 17:8). It buds, produces flowers and then almonds that can feed people. Grace authority is life giving authority. The broad road has many distractions and pleasures but no life.” – Pastor Allan Leitner

The passing of Nelson Mandela reminded me of that quote and the principle expressed.  Let's explore that a little.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A Light in the Dark

 cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Frank Fox

There is light and there's darkness.  And there's sight and there's vision. The invisible can become visible.  These are Todd Parsons' thoughts for us, today.

Monday, December 2, 2013

He Said…

1 Thessalonians 5:18 (AMP)  Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and Mediator of that will].

We shared that verse in our very brief Thanksgiving post.  That post basically said we were taking a few days off for the holiday.  The intent was to have sort of a working holiday, getting some things done I might not otherwise easily get to.  I don’t leave a lot of gaps in my schedule.  My plans went by the wayside for the week and I chilled out for a change.  As a result, I got to see some things that I might not otherwise.  And renewed some things in my mind.  Walk through some of that with me. There are only two in this post.