We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

Harry Potter

Harry Potter is old news but for those parents who ignorantly pass these stories on to their children, please first read, Friendly Dragons, Moral Nightmares; also go on line and read all of the content from Michael O’Brien on Harry Potter; lastly someone just recommended HARRY
POTTER, WHAT’S A CHRISTIAN TO DO. Nothing has changed since the early days of the OT. The enemy is still trying to influence our kids with the culture of the Canaanites.

Published in: on September 7, 2011 at 6:24 pm  Comments (2)  

Shade Tree Parenting

Shade Tree Parenting

I have heard it said that “great is the man who plants trees in whose shade he will never sit under.” This saying reminds me of parenting. It is a wise parent who is preparing for the future success of their children.

There is no better illustration of this kind of sacrificial nurturing than the example provided by King David.In I Chronicles 22 we are allowed to go behind the scenes and listen in on David’s interaction with his son Solomon. This is an important exchange between father and son; David is nearing the end of his life. Solomon may be thinking that he is about to receive a lecture about life, but instead he hears his father say:

“‘With great pains I have provided for the house of the LORD 100,000 talents of gold, a million talents of silver, and bronze and iron beyond weighing, for there is so much of it; timber and stone, too, I have provided. To these you must add. You have an abundance of workmen: stonecutters, masons, carpenters, and all kinds of craftsmen without number, skilled in working gold, silver, bronze, and iron. Arise and work! The LORD be with you!’ David also commanded all the leaders of Israel to help Solomon his son . . .”

To put this in perspective, a talent weighs 75 pounds! That’s 75 million pounds of silver! Now that’s doing some serious saving! And what’s amazing is that David was saving it so that his son would be able to carry on the work of God. Now that’s a parenting perspective with an eternal purpose.

In 2nd Corinthians 12 we read “. . . for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children. And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.”

This pattern for parenting was first demonstrated by our heavenly Father . . . “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:32)

Published in: on September 7, 2011 at 1:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

Nehemiah 1 & 2: May I Ask a Favor? Part 2

Previously, we talked about what happens when you ask a Persian king for a favor. You can count on either being tied down in the hot sun with honey poured over your face or being cut in half.

Not only was it improper to ask a Persian king for a favor, but you couldn’t even be in his presence with a sad countenance; either approach would result in a cruel and painful death.

This background is helpful because it sheds light on the stressful decision Nehemiah has to make as he approaches a Persian king for a favor. Knowing the high probability that he could face an agonizing death, Nehemiah comes up with the strategic plan of the century.

The strategy? To pray–for four months! For four months he waits on God to open the door. And then, God does something unexpected.

Noticing the sad countenance of Nehemiah, the king confronts him. Now that we know the background of what happens when you come before a king with a sad countenance, this raises the stakes.

“. . . the king said to me (Nehemiah), ‘Why is your face sad, seeing you are not sick? This is nothing but sadness of heart.’ Then I was very much afraid. I said to the king . . .”

What Nehemiah says to the king is pure genius! Rather than asking for a favor, Nehemiah explains the situation back home–just facts. In response to the information, the king asks him “What are you requesting?” Do you see the strategy? God has allowed Nehemiah to ask for a favor without losing his life! And Nehemiah continues with his next strategic move–the Scriptures record, “So I prayed to the God of heaven.”

Looking for a favor? Our King invites us all to come boldly to his throne of favor that we may obtain mercy, to find favor to help in our time of need. In the Greek, this phrase means, “in the nick of time.” Prayer really works. All it takes is practice!

Published in: on September 7, 2011 at 4:17 am  Comments (1)