Monthly Archives: May 2011

what is essential?

A few weeks ago as Anna and I were basking in the experience in KC, we were prayed for by a young lady from Poland and a young man from Korea. When they prayed for me particularly, she reminded me to keep Jesus as the main thing as I travel and to give me a great confirmation, she pointed me to Col. 1 which has one of the most clear statements about the essential nature and centrality of Jesus in Scripture.

As I study and pray today for this weekend’s preaching, I will be drinking deeply from this text. Indeed, I am reminded of the question at the forum on the Bible last week: what makes your Christianity different from religion? Answer: A relationship with God the Father through His Son Jesus instructed and guided by the indwelling Holy Spirit.

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love like a little child

As I travel around, I have been around a lot of children of late. This morning I asked God what it was that He wanted to teach me from the experiences that I am having around children. I was led to think of Enoh. This little boy never hesitates to express his love. Yesterday at lunch he said “I love you” individually to just about everyone in the room. He is a loving child. We can learn to express our love freely from him. Love for our Father and love for one another. When I arrived the other night, I was greeted with his enthusiastic greeting “chica Tom” (Uncle Tom in Croatian). He knew I was coming and was glad to see me. What can I learn from this? I can apply that greeting this way: as my Lord has promised to return, I can look forward to it with great joy. And I can be ready. How? By abiding with Him now and keeping myself fit to be in presence, living in His Gospel by recognizing that I am a mess and living a life of repentance (“God help me, I can’t, so you must”) and faith (“Lord build my faith, give me the strength to lift the shield of faith”). If I am in constant communion with Him in this way, I am ready to receive Him whenever it is time for Him to come. I learned one more thing… or should I say I am reminded of one more thing through my time with Enoh, Our heavenly Father is incredibly patient. I have observed amazing patience in the parenting of Enoh’s mom and dad (Enoh is 2 1/2!). This has reminded me that God is patient with me and that I require a lot of patience from Him because of my fallen-ness. Thankfully. I rest in His righteousness and I dwell in his patient embrace and walk in His patient guidance. Perhaps this is what Jesus meant when He told us to have faith like a little child. Faith that shows up as love… lived, said and walked.

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baseball as outreach – kingdom networking

A couple of years ago a friend in New York told me about a couple who were serving in Sarajevo. I emailed them from Budapest and Laci and I went to visit Dejan and Michelle to meet and see about ministry possibilities together. On the way back from that visit I got to meet Jeremy who serves in Croatia and talked briefly about ministry possibilities. A few months later, Dejan and Michelle met Jeremy and Petra at a CEO gathering in northern Hungary as well as the rest of the gang including Doug and Lea. So Jeremy and Doug talk about baseball as outreach and the layers of connection deepen. Later, Dejan and Michelle hang out with Jeremy and Petra and deepen that connection. Recently, Michelle tells Jeremy about a guy who lives near him in Croatia and a discussion with Garrett about baseball as outreach is set up. I arrive and ride along with Jeremy to this neighboring Croatian city to meet this new contact made who is using baseball as outreach. Well, it turns out, as we talked about baseball fields, we learn that he has heard of Doug and when I asked him where he went to school, he did a degree in computer science at… UVa! no kidding… and he went to the same church while at UVA that Lea did in her undergrad year… wow, God has a pretty cool network… and to think that if Heather had not told me about Dejan and Michelle, today’s meeting would have never happened…

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teaching is a great gig

and Jeremy makes it look so easy

living the Gospel into classrooms…

and schools…

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did you notice the new header pic?

CLICK “about the pic” to read the story

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a forum on the Bible

Last Saturday I participated in a forum on the Bible. The point of our talk was to present reasons to look to the Bible as God’s revelation to man. We had a great turnout, the English corner of the public library was at capacity. The best part were the questions that the audience asked. One person asked us to differentiate between the Christianity in the Bible and religion. I was able to discuss how God has revealed Himself in the Bible and wishes to have a relationship with us. I was able to share with them the difference between knowing about God and knowing God from a relational level. After the forum, we got to have a number of conversations with people with more questions. It was a great opportunity to share about God’s revelation in the Scripture and His desire for relationship with us.

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