Worth 12 minutes of your time… 

This is a thought provoking video from the Skit Guys. 

I was challenged by it last Saturday on a retreat with guys from my church in Charlottesville.

It is really worth your time. 

Click here and take twelve.


Dusk at Skylark as we prepared for communion on the mountain.

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books to read on the question of disciple making (fulfilling a long overdue promise)

A month ago I promised some folks that I’d put my bibliography on the blog for their reference. These folks were at the disciple making seminar in Budapest that was hosted at this awesome Bible college:


I promised the bibliography in response to great questions about the books I read as I did my research.

So, I promised the bibliography would be posted the first week of April but now I’m posting it the first week of May. Oh well.

Based on my opinion, I’ve quickly noted three types of books: * helpful to topic; ** especially helpful to topic and me; *** must reads.

Click here to view the Google doc.

Many apologies that this is SO late.

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Beginning our week with a helpful reminder…

This has been an important text for me over the years:

“Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation. God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places. To the choirmaster: with stringed instruments.”‭‭Habakkuk‬ ‭3:17-19‬ ‭ESV‬‬ http://bible.com/59/hab.3.17-19.esv

It was on my reading plan this morning and is an important reminder for us.

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The Father’s love…

How wonderful to experience the unconditional love of God. A love that is based on His decision to love us according to His will, not on how we behave.

Easter proved it with the death, the burial and the resurrection of Jesus, His only begotten Son.

Rejoice friend, you can’t measure up. Through Jesus, His love invites you too!

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.

‭‭1 John‬ ‭3:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

http://bible.com/59/1jn.3.1.esv

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Boundries are important… (hither and yon?)


Week in and week out, I hear stories of unfulfilled leaders running to and fro, hither and yon, from this to that, just to lament that they’re not getting anywhere. 

Part of the challenge among leaders today is finding and sticking with a purpose. 

There are just so many good things that we need to do.

Need?

Really?

My observation is that as our aim is off. 

One resource that has been helpful for a few of us is in adjusting our sights:


I urge you to consider this helpful volume.

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Woulda, shoulda?

Regrets can be debilitating.

I heard from a colleague who got some ‘bad news.’ “What should I have done better?” Was the question. 

This person was not even involved in the situation. But, we tend to see the world through the glass of our ability.

“Why do you think anything you might have done would have changed things?” I asked.

There was no answer

We must beware of thinking we can be the solutions to everyone’s problems. We can’t.

We must beware of thinking if I would have done this, or I should have done that.

Instead, consider the ‘bad news’ in a greater context, what can I learn? How can I pray? What are the ways now that I can point people to the gospel? How can I give God glory even in this? What are the things I can be thankful for in this?

It’s not all about us.

When we’re feeling sad about a situation, that should be a signal, not about what I woulda shoulda, but about how I can pray, rejoice and give thanks.

It’s turn our aim from earth to heaven. To Him who actually can do something.

“But we will bless the Lord from this time forth and forevermore. Praise the Lord!”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭115:18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

http://bible.com/59/psa.115.18.esv

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How the wrong focus and a too high a view of man can impact prayer:

1. No prayer.

2. Infrequent prayer

3. Lack of proper focus on God means when we actually do pray, we’re really talking to ourselves. 

4. Prayer has little effect on our perspective, on our life because it is not toward God but the problem.

Recently I’ve been unwell. I acquired a bug on my travels that I fought from my trip home for about 12 days. It’s worst effect was how it created the ‘woe is me’ mindset. There is a danger of having a spiritual ‘woe is me’ mindset too.

Sitting with some fellow disciples in our regular conversation helped me realize that I had been praying like #4 (above). My focus on the woes of some friends that I had shifted into the ‘woe is me.’

Once I realized it, I prayed properly and my focus in praying for these friends has shifted from the problem to seeing God as the only answer and laying them in His lap.

Proper prayer should take me (us) to the throne and dispel our concerns as we fear God the way Isaiah did (see Is. 6). 

We do this when we enter into prayer having invested time in His words to us, words inspired by His Spirit, words that give life, words that – as Keller taught – give us a language for prayer. 

Sitting (or standing) and slowly reading and rereading a Psalm helps  me ascend the steps of prayer.

Then, having arrived at the throne, I see my Father so clearly, as I have abided in His word, I see His GREATNESS and am able to lay my burdens in His lap.

They are His burdens to carry, not mine.

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