Sunday, August 30, 2009
How does Jesus define "evangelism?" Evangelism is seeing people reconciled to God, to know Christ personally. The "how" of evangelism has many answers.
Five "Musts" for the Church in Evangelism.
1. The Church must be dynamic. Matthew 16:18. Christ says "I will build," that is to build a new nation, a nation of believers. Building requires Change. The outward change is the gathering in of new people; the inward change is growth in ones own relationship to Christ.
2. The Church must know the goal. Matthew 22:36 -40. The goal is to Love God in reaching out to others: to let them see Christ's love in us, that they will love the Lord.
3. The Church must feed off the passion of Christ. Matthew 23:37. "How often have I longed--"
Jesus had a passion for people and so must we have.
Choice is the first gift of grace.
Passion will fuel us, even when we are discouraged. We want to serve because we love, not because we are obligated.
4. The Church must know its message. Luke 9:1,2. Its purpose is to drive out demons, to heal; preach the kingdom, to know God and to become like Him.
5. The Church must know its power source. Matthew 28:9 - 20. (The Great Commission)
Go (into the world), Make (disciples), Baptize (new believers), Teach (men to follow in Christ's footsteps). Then, Jesus said, "I will be with you always.
Anything done in human context will have short term effect, or it will fail, without the Holy Spirit.
Our purpose is to allow God to live in us, to reach out to others to reconcile with God.
Where do you need to follow Jesus for this next week? next month?
Saturday, August 29, 2009
I only know Andrea has made my day.
Please follow the link and you will find
A special friend, careful, prayerful and kind.
Thank you, Andrea.
Like Andrea, I would like to bestow this award on my readers. When you arrive here you play a role in making me happy! When I go to your sites, you again provide happiness for my day.
Thank you all.
If I have counted correctly, this is the 300th posting on this blogsite. Now how did that happen?
Bits of string, a day at a time, I guess.
[Happy Birthday to Bernardine]
Bernardine and Carl's cottage in the Ozarks.--->
Friday, August 28, 2009
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Mr. Johnson was born August 27, 1908 near Stonewall, Texas. Following graduation from college, Johnson taught school for several years, and meanwhile became active in politics. In 1937 he ran for a House seat and was elected. The rest of his life until his retirement from the presidency was consumed in politics and public office.
Mr. Johnson was a very forceful personality and was known as an arm-twister, someone who got things done. He was the last president who never appointed a chief-of-staff while he was in the White House. He was a hands-on manager, a prime manipulator and he knew where all the bodies were buried.
The positions he held and the accomplishments of his career are too numerous to mention. Look him up.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
and voila! Milk shakes. (For a couple of dips, BBBH interjects.)
were apparent when Reverend
opened his garage door on a bright
sunny morning. Ah! There he perches
amid rafters maze high overhead
while refusing the offer of escape by
Rev. speaks gently to Jay as follows:
“Fly out, Jay, you are free; and you must
Be tired and frightened.”
Jay speaks haughtily: “Don’t be stupid,
I like it here amid these tangled rafters,
Leave me alone.”
Rev. speaks soothingly:
“You must understand,
Go for the light and liberty.”
Jay scorns Rev. by saying: “I will not
Be deceived, I will not.”
Rev. pleadingly implores Jay: “You will
Perish here alone in the heat without
Water and food. Look, an open door.”
Jay screams: “More deception, I will not
Seek the light.”
Rev, manipulating long handled fish net
Says: “Leave or face capture.” (fear tactic)
It did not work.
Jay haughtily says:
“Watch my speed, grace,
My every quirk. Catch me if you can.”
The Chase begins: a true obstacle course
For Jay and Rev. Rafters above and garage
Trivia below. Heat and humidity for both.
Result of chase: A perspiring Rev. and
A faltering Jay after half-hour contest.
Rev. uses plastic pipe as a SHOO-BRUSH
Jay and Rev. are bone weary, but both determined.
Jay determined to stay inside.
Rev. determined that Jay go.
Jay avoiding light & release flies open
Mouthed & hard breathing.
Jay falls a little lower by the minute,
He is scratching the wall to stay up,
But is clearly defeated.
Jay continues flight with Rev. in hot
Pursuit until Jay falls to the floor.
Rev. OODLES Jay toward the door & lite.
Jay is subdued, epitome of defeat though
Pushed outside, but must rest a bit.
Rev. says: “See, I told you there was freedom.”
Jay Bird took his freedom flight.
A Jay he was, a Jay he will be
Caring for neither God nor me.
Jay caused a lot of wasted time for
Rev. & himself. Jay flies in freedom
While Rev. cleans his garage floor,
But seems pleased with himself.
--D. W. Lacy Note: Sometimes we try with Human Jay Birds.
(Not all of my father's writings were theological expositions or evangelistic homilies; although perhaps this is both. He was about 84 when he engaged in this contest of wills with the Jay Bird.)
©2005 David W. Lacy
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Monday, August 24, 2009
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Four Truths about Body Life in the Church of Christ
1. One Body, many parts (v.12) Every part is just as God wants it to be. (v.18) 2. Each part needs the other. There are no "Lone Ranger" Christians. We are created to be part of the group. 3. Equal concern for each other (v. 25), just as there should be no division in the body human (v.26). When one part suffers, all suffer. We need to celebrate our differences. 4. We are the body of Christ. (v.27) Jesus realized there was only one of Him, so He left so there would be millions to do His work. Essentially, Jesus never left, because He lives through us. Not all have the same path, but together as the Body of Christ we see Jesus. We are the Body so that the world may see Christ.
"Christ Carrying the Cross" by El Greco
Historical note, not germane to the sermon: Eighty-three years ago today, Valentino died, sending women everywhere into mourning, and in some cases, even to suicide.
Friday, August 21, 2009
"This little piggy went to market ..."
Owe for everything.
No time to sing.
No time to pet my cat.
Ate cooked food
Ate raw food
Ate sushi and steak
Ate no fat, ate lots of cake.
Stayed up late
Got up early
No wonder I’m so surly
Then I begin all over again.
Run the treadmill of life
And in the gym
Kept the house
Neat as a pin.
But life slipped by at the speed of light
Never took time to fly my kite
Always busy --never late
Should have taken time to roller skate.
I’ve been young
I’ll be old
I was poor,
I have sinned
I have lied
By my side.
Now I see what I’ve become
Should have taken time for fun.
Only riches from above
Completely fill the need for love.
©2007 Grace JoAnn Lacy. Used by permission.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
She moved along a few more steps and as she thought these thoughts, a stone about the size of a duck egg caught her eye. It might have had the face of her Mother etched on it, or it might have been her own face she saw. In either case, the thing made a wonderful target for the kick she aimed at it with her right foot. Contact! Suddenly the pain that she was feeling in her heart was forgotten as all her thoughts were focused on the pain in her toe. Hopping clumsily on her left foot, she grasped the injured member in both hands then crumpled to the ground to examine the damage. Seated on the coarse grass at the roadside she inspected the injury. No blood. That was a good thing because the only thing she hated more than worms was the sight of blood.
“Well,” she thought, “I am a mess. Daddy is right I’m clumsy and useless and in everybody’s way. What did he say? Oh, yeah. ‘I’ll never understand why your mother insisted on naming you Grace. You’re about as graceful as that thing they call elephant.’ Yeah, and then he calls me ‘Gracie Allen‘. I hear her on the radio and she may be an adult and everything, but she sure sounds stupid to me. So he thinks I am clumsy AND stupid. Well, I won’t be ‘Grace’ anymore. From now on I am Jo Ann! After all, when autumn begins this year I will be ten years old! I’ll show everyone.”
She got up from the berm and resumed her walk to Grandmother’s house. There was a bit of a limp in her step now, though, but as she forgot about the pain in her foot, the pain in her heart returned.“Why does Daddy have to marry that stupid old Lola? And those ignorant girls of hers are awful. I can’t live with them. I just can’t. I’ll ask Grandma if I can come live with her. But that won’t help much, since those dopes will all be right next door, anyway.”She walked through the door of Grandma’s house and slammed the door behind her.
Grandmother called from the kitchen, “In here right now, Girl! What is it with you and the door slamming? Oh, dear. You’re limping. What happened?”
“Aw,” Jo Ann whined, “I stobbed my toe on a stupid old rock!”
“The rock was stupid?”
"Don’t start in with me about ‘clumsy’. I get enough of that from Daddy.”
“Now, now. It’s all right. I don’t see any swellin‘. Grab that parin’ knife and start in on those taters, Young’n. Oh, wait. Scrub those hands first.”
Jo Ann went to the zink and lathered her hands with the lye soap , all the while muttering indecipherable noises as though she were experiencing glossalalia.
“That’s enough with the grumbling, Girl. Your life certainly seems to be pizzle-sprung. What is it now?"
"It’s that stupid Lola, and Maria and Lolita. Why can’t they just go to, uh, to Golconda and leave me and Daddy alone?”
“I know you are hurtin‘, but they ain’t no call to get all twisted in a knot. Grownups is gonna do what they gonna do.”
“Yeah, grownups.”After dinner and dishes, Jo Ann read until she was reminded that she needed to get on home to bed. “And turn the latch on that outhouse door when you leave it. I hear your Dad callin’ now.”
As she lay in bed in the dark all the hobgoblins of loneliness, fear of the unknown, and a thousand, maybe a jillion, other bugaboos haunted the girl. But the worst was the ever-nagging question. Why did my Mother throw me away? Hot tears dampened her pillow; but eventually, recalling snippets from her life in Chicago, she became too exhausted to stay awake any longer and sleep stole her consciousness away.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
`Let's hear it,' said Humpty Dumpty. `I can explain all the poems that ever were invented -- and a good many that haven't been invented just yet.'
This sounded very hopeful, so Alice repeated the first verse:
`'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.'
Who's been repeating all that hard stuff to you?'
`I read it in a book,' said Alice. `But I had some poetry repeated to me much easier than that, by -- Tweedledee, I think.' --Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll.
The ellipsis represents the explanation that Humpty Dumpty and Alice contrived. Do you remember it?
[and Happy Birthday to daughter Ivanelle (Ivy). It ends in "0"!]
Monday, August 17, 2009
Last period of the day. Eighth grade math class. This group is the "band section." It has been demonstrated that there is a positive correlation between musical ability and math ability, which is to say this was a bright bunch of kids, but disadvantaged by being in a last period class. That is, the kids, and the teacher, had already been through six other class periods.
Keeping their attention a top priority, the teacher is performing brilliantly. In the course of the exposition, he makes a statement that inspires Jack to inquire about an issue that is not germane to the lesson, but related to the topic. Teach understands that this is a valid question and responds, and I quote, "I don't know right off-hand, but I have that information in my drawers. Give me a chance to look for it."
No reaction, except that I note that fourth seat back, far right hand row, Jane has a wicked sparkle in her eye and the formation of the grin on her face tells me she is about to let go. I make eye contact with her, hard stare, glower as if silently to say, If you do, you're dead. She relaxed, I relaxed and proceeded with the lesson.
This has been one of my favorite "teacher" stories over the years. Were I to meet Jane somewhere today, she would be fifty-eight years of age and probably would have absolutely no memory of this incident. And I would not remind her.
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Unfortunately, there is too often a disconnect between what we say we believe and our behaviors.
There are four areas of life that make up who we are: 1) spiritual, 2) emotional, 3) mental, and 4) physical.
Scripture lesson: Genesis 1:26 - 28 and Genesis 2:18 - 25
To affirm God's good and perfect plan 1) We are created in God's image (both male and female is who God is). We procreate, mimicking God's creation of mankind. 2) Humankind has been blessed by God. (v.28) God blesses sexual union within the framework of marriage.
The devil always wants to get us to devalue what God values --and to get us to value what is not important.
I Corinthians 7:1 - 5 Both marriage and singleness are gifts from God. We are perfect in whatever state we are in within God's plan.
Biblical truth about sex
Sex is to be enjoyed with spouse within the framework of marriage. (v.1)
God wants to fulfill our spouse sexually. (v.3)
There is no place in Christian marriage to deprive our spouse sexually. (v.5)
Pastor used a bottle of Mountain Dew as an illustration of sexual desire and fulfillment. He noted that there was 1) a lot of information about the contents on the outside of the bottle; 2) there is a price to be paid to obtain it (theft might be attempted, but likely would be caught); 3) we desire that the product will have an intact seal. Protect your seal.
Hebrews 13:4 says to give honor to marriage.
Can the past be forgiven? Of course. God forgives and renews. 2 Corinthians 5:17.You Are Complete!
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
The fat cat on the mat
may seem to dream
of nice mice that suffice
for him, or cream;
but he free, maybe,
walks in thought
unbowed, proud, where loud
roared and fought
his kin, lean and slim,
or deep in den
in the East feasted on beasts
and tender men.
The giant lion with iron
claw in paw,
and huge ruthless tooth
in gory jaw;
the pard dark-starred,
fleet upon feet
that oft soft from aloft
leaps on his meat
where woods loom in gloom--
far now they be,
fierce and free,
and tamed is he;
but fat cat on the mat
kept as a pet,
he does not forget.
--The Tolkien Reader, J.R.R. Tolkien
[--for Hobbes and Grace, and Mickey; and in memory of Condibell and Tigger]
[My essay, Cats]
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Les Paul June 9, 1915 – August 13, 2009 RIP
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
In my adult life, I found the game to be a wonderful pastime for many years, until the constraints of the profession withdrew from me the time to engage in it properly. I had the pleasure of teaching a number of children the game. I hope some of them pursued it into adulthood. The best performance I had in tournament play was in a county tournament, where I was runner-up. I had a winning position in the final game, but lost it through haste. Never hurry the game. (I have a doggone second-place trophy to remind me of this in perpetuity.) Never show mercy; never continue play in a clearly lost position, resignation is the more honorable course; and never, ever throw a game.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Alex Haley was born on August 11, 1921 in Ithaca, NY. He was a prolific writer. Of his many published works, Roots is no doubt the most well-known. It was produced as a television miniseries which aired in 1977. There would be few people under the age of fifty who did not watch every episode of the heartwrenching story. Queen also became a TV miniseries which was first presented in 1993.
Kunta Kinte-Alex Haley Foundation is a prime source for further information about this great American author.
Alex Haley 1921 - 1992 RIP
Folk musician, folklorist Mike Seeger, born August 15, 1933, died August 10, 2009. RIP
Monday, August 10, 2009
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Seven words/phrases that help us understand the Return of Christ.
- faith --we believe that Jesus died and rose again (v.14) Faith is believing as fact what we cannot see.
- declaration --according to the Lord's own word, we tell you-- (v.15)
parable of talents. The point: the Master returns. Be ready.
parable of the ten virgins. The point: the Bridegroom returns. Be ready.
parable of the sheep and goats. The point: there will be a separation. Be ready.
parable of farmer hiring at different times of day. The point: be ready at end of the day.
3. taken/left Matthew 24:40-41 in Jesus' words. Don't be left.
4. No one knows the time of His return. Be ready (Mt 24:36)
5. As in the days of Noah salvation too late when the door is closed. Be ready. (vv.38,39)
6. Keep watch Stay awake. Be ready. (v. 42)
7. Encourage (v. 18) Jesus is coming. Be ready.
(Pastor did not quote the following scripture, but I include it as a reminder and encouragement. Jesus is coming. Be ready.)
"First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, "Where is this 'coming' he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on as it has since the beginning of creation." 2 Peter 3:3-4 (NIV)
Saturday, August 8, 2009
"This is the 37th time I have spoken to you from this office, where so many decisions have been made that shaped the history of this Nation. Each time I have done so to discuss with you some matter that I believe affected the national interest...