Thursday, October 28, 2010

Hamburger with an Egg

I stood in a kitchen Monday night chatting with a guy who has become a good friend. Let's call him Frank. Frank had been having a great couple of days for a multitude of reasons. Doesn't sound that extraordinary yet does it? Let me give you some background. Frank has had a rough few years. He watched many of the things in his life slip away: his family, his job and much of his hope. Frank struggled with things that had a grip on him and he was unable to get free of that hold. Frank was homeless for a time. We met months ago and in one of the first conversations we had, Frank shared his testimony with me. Frank had recommitted himself to Christ and was trying his best to live for Him in the midst of his situation. Frank was a faithful attendee of Bible study and continues to be. Every week I was privileged to hear Frank's honest feelings on God and where he stood with Him. I was always encouraged by Frank and all that he brought to the group. God was stretching Frank inside and it was great to watch. This isn't even the best part yet!

Frank was able to save up some money over a few months and based on what he felt God was telling him to do, he bought a house for about $1,000. Day and night, Frank worked and continues to work on the house. His vision is to continue to do this, buying these houses that need a great deal of love and work on them. He isn't interested in the ever popular trend of flipping houses or anything like that. He wants to help bring homeless men to their feet and give them an opportunity to get back into a normal life. God provided Frank with heaps of donations (washer and dryer, lumber, tools, etc) to repair his house. He has brought a few guys to live with him and he hopes to be able to continue.

Now for the best part! For months Frank would ask for prayer that he would get to see his kids again soon. He longed to be the father that he should be to his kids. I called Frank on my way to drop some things off to him on Monday and he told me that his son was there with him. His initiative, refusal to quit and trust in Christ, led him to this point. We stood and wept together in his kitchen Monday night at the greatness of God's grace, mercy and provision. Meanwhile, Frank made what meal he could for them, hamburgers with a fried egg on top (in a hot dog bun to boot!) His son watched cartoons, while we stood in the kitchen. I couldn't help but be amazed at our Lord, though I should know that this is what He is all about; Jesus Christ is a Master Builder, a Great Redeemer, a Repairer of lives, the Great Provider and He never tires! What a God we serve!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Evangelicalism’s Fads and Fixtures | First Things

Evangelicalism’s Fads and Fixtures First Things
There is a part of me that smiles when I read this article. But most of me cringes, because these things greatly shape what non-Christians think of us crazy Christians. It comes down to tradition versus scripture. Tradition can be scriptural, but scripture is not defined by tradition. What do you think?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Decline of Marriages

Marriages declining both locally and nationally - Massillon, OH - The Independent
I would dare to say that the decline is not as much tied to a recession or any sort of economical reason. I would instead say that the root cause is deeply rooted into the younger generations. There is, as those in the article point out, a very lacksadasical view of marriage currently. It is seen as something to just try out or as something that is a next step in a cohabitating, semi-monogamous, intimate relationship. So what if it doesn't work out! In fact, why even get married when you can get all the joys of marriage without the commitment? This is the sentiment of not only my generation, but the one before and after it. Marriage is less and less seen as a covenant before God reflecting the love Christ has for His church. What a tired, worn out ideal that is! We are living in an awakened time, why on earth would you view marriage to be something so archaic and oppressive!

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church-for we are members of his body. "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. "This is a profound mystery-but I am talking about Christ and the church.However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. - Ephesians 5:25-33