A quick thought for parents from John Piper. Great reminder to me because I have kids in both camps discussed below. Jesus tells of two sons:
What do you think? A man had two sons. And he went to the first and said, "Son, go and work in the vineyard today." And he answered, "I will not," but afterward he changed his mind and went. And he went to the other son and said the same. And he answered, "I go, sir," but did not go. (Matthew 21:28-30)
I draw this advice for parents from these words: Do not despair of the rebel (child #1*), and do not assume the heart of the compliant child (child #2) is with you.
Which means practically, pray like crazy for both of them. And keep showing both of them the gospel of undeserved, blood-bought grace. *Italicized words added by me.
The fact is that when I haven't been at work or asleep, I have been doing a lot of reading, and I just haven't carved out the time to type. I have about 3 book reviews lined up to write, and a few other thoughts to share as well. Hopefully, I get reacquainted with the keyboard soon.
Last week I read a delightful story called, "Don't Let Me Go" by David W. Pierce. It is the story of the mountain climbing and marathon running adventures a father and daughter shared together during her high school years.
Pierce writes with wit and candor that cause you to smile as you flip through the pages of his memory. I couldn't help but picture myself in his shoes, encountering the trails, hurts, smiles, and triumphs he is describing.
Intermingled into the main story are reflections Pierce shares on his own upbringing, primarily focusing on his relationship with his alcoholic father. These interludes are emotional and vulnerable, but I don't think they were necessary additions to the story. It may be that adding the memories helped Pierce more fully integrate his own experience with his daughter and heal past wounds. In that case, as a reader I am left feeling like I am sitting on the couch in Pierce's counseling office listening like a fly on the w…
Last week I had the pleasure of receiving and reading Tony Morgan's newest book, "Killing Cockroaches."
If you don't know Tony you should. He is a pastor and the CSO (Chief Strategic Officer) at New Spring Church in Anderson, South Carolina. Before working at New Spring Tony was on staff at Granger Community Church in South bend, In. But what Tony is probably most well known for is his superstar blog TonyMorganLive.
Killing Cockroaches is a book about leadership, ministry, strategy, and cultural engagement. The metaphor of killing cockroaches comes from a story Tony shares about his discovery of the fact that as leader he was spending too much time doing things other people should have been empowered to do.
The book is written as a collection of thoughts (blog posts) without any chapters. I really liked the format. It gave me the freedom to read straight through or to stop and reflect on particular things Tony shared. It was also fun to come across blog posts tha…
Last night I played hockey as a sub on a friend's team. I had a great time but I absolutely should not have eaten at Chipotle an hour before the puck dropped. I am pretty sure I re-tasted my burrito while skating behind the net, and by the end of the game I was exhausted and feeling quite ill. I still had a goal and an assist though!
By the way, tonight the MN State High School Hockey Tournament begins! I have loved this event as long as I can remember. It was one of the few times I could stay up late watching TV. I even got to miss a day or two of school to hangout at home and watch the games. I taped tons of the games and will never forget names like Spehar, Kraft, Checco, and Crowley.
About 10 years ago a good friend and I sat awake for hours into the early morning fascinated with the sport we were watching on TV. We couldn't understand the game or the rules at all, but we kept watching making up the rules as near as we could determine. The sport was rugby, best described as a combination of soccer and American football. I recently came across this post on the Art of Manliness blog. I wish I had read A Primer on Rugby ten years ago; if anything, I would have gotten a lot more sleep that night!
I felt like this post was worth copying in its entirety. It is from John Piper. In this age, God rescues his people from some harm. Not all harm. That's comforting to know, because otherwise we might conclude from our harm that he has forgotten us or rejected us. So be encouraged by the simple reminder that in Acts 16:19-24 Paul and Silas were not delivered, but in verses 25-26 they were. First, no deliverance: "They seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace." (v. 19)"The magistrates tore the garments off them." (v. 22) They "inflicted many blows upon them." (v. 23)The jailer "fastened their feet in the stocks." (v. 24) But then deliverance: About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God...and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone's bonds were unfastened. (v. 25-26) God could have stepped …
It is seldom that any of our tastes are made to disappear by a mere process of natural extinction. At least, it is very seldom that this is done through the instrumentality of reasoning. It may be done by excessive pampering, but it is almost never done by the mere force of mental determination.
But what can not be thus destroyed, may be dispossest—and one taste may be made to give way to another, and to lose its power entirely as the reigning affection of the mind. It is thus that the boy ceases, at length, to be the slave of his appetite; but it is because a manlier taste has now brought it into subordination, and that the youth ceases to idolize pleasure; but it is because the idol of wealth has become the stronger and gotten the ascendency, and that even the love of money ceases to have the mastery over the heart of many a thriving citizen; but it is because, drawn into the whirl of city politics, another affection has been wrought into his moral system, and he is now lorded over b…
Not too long ago a friend preached a sermon on marriage. At the end he shared 10 'nuggets' of wisdom. They were... 1. Recognize and celebrate your differences. 2. Be quick to apologize. 3. Treat each other with respect. 4.Handle each others shortcomings with sensitivity. 5. Don’t expect your spouse to be able to read your mind. 6. Learn to communicate by becoming transparent with each other. 7. Learn to fight fair. 8. Become expert at knowing what makes the other person happy. 9. Keep your romance alive. Make time to date your mate. 10. Nurture your faith as a couple.Good reminders. Thanks Chris.
I had the opportunity to preach at my church on Sunday. My sermon was titled "Between the Trees" and my message centered on three ideas: 1) why the world is messed up (Gen. 3 - sin); 2) what our hope is for the future (Rev 21 & 22 - heaven); 3) how we live NOW while we await THEN.
I have received positive feedback and I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity. If you want to here the message you can listen on the Rejoice! church website or download the podcast from iTunes when it is uploaded.
- build a shed - climb a small mountain - buy a snowmobile - run another marathon - get another pick-up - own a gun - take my daugther to a dance - watch my boys play baseball - go on a golf weekend w/ some dudes - go camping in the Black Hills w/ my family - pimp my garage w/ a sealed floor, repainted walls, TV and maybe a urinal - take my wife somewhere warm and topical and alone for a week
On my March 4 post my friend Daryl commented, "I'm glad things are starting to settle down for you. BUT, you know what happens when you are comfortable...the big man upstairs will give you a kick in the arse to throw things for a loop."
A couple days later my 3 kids and wife ended up with strep throat and my weekend at work was very painful! Thanks for the prophesy Daryl.
Jacob and I both got something new today. His Nana bought him some really cool Star Wars figurines. I purchased a new set of tires for my Honda Civic. Jacob has been carrying around his toys all night playing with them and showing them to friends. My new tires are sitting out in the driveway waiting to be beaten and pounded on by the road during my travel to work.
The older I get, The more I regret, That my toys are no longer fun.
I feel as though I am settling into a real groove in life right now. I am enjoying time with my family, work is going well, and I am optimistic about the future. I am spending less time blogging and web surfing and more time playing w/ the family and reading. Monday night I went outside w/ Jacob and we played football in the snow and made snow angels and had a snowball fight. Last night I took Isabelle to McDonald's and we got an ice cream sundae. This week I've also scrubbed a bathroom floor and changed a tire on my car; plus I am preparing a sermon for Sunday. In the midst of it all I feel peace and joy and contentment with where the Lord has me. And I am glad.