Tuesday, October 28, 2008

One for All

Caiaphas, who was high priest (of Israel) at the time, said... "You don't realize that it's better for you that one man should die for the people than for the whole nation to be destroyed."

Two thoughts-
First- Caiaphas, with his "blind eyes" had it right. He was following a basic leadership principle- "You never sacrifice the many for the one, but the one for the many." Although this philosophy sounds simple, it can be difficult to practice. As Christ-followers we are to extend grace and mercy. We're told stories about the "shepherd leaving the ninety-nine to look for the one", "the woman who turned her house upside down to find one lost coin", and "the father who stood at the gate waiting for his lost son to return home" (Luke 15). Can you see the conflict spiritual leaders face, the weight of responsibility, and the wisdom required? Believe me, I know. I understand the need to "seek His will in all I do". (Proverbs 3:6) Do I leave the one to perish to protect the flock? Do I suspend my encouragement of those traveling the narrow way to seek the lost? Yes and yes. The word paradigm comes to mind. I guess I just work harder... or pray harder... (Lord, we're not asking for our burdens to be lighter, but make our backs stronger. -African prayer)

Second- God always wins in the end. Here Caiaphas thought he would simply remove Jesus, please the Jews, and maintain the nation's relationship with the Romans. However, little did he know he would have a small part in a historic world-wide revolution. The death of Jesus might have saved the Jews for a season (think about the events of 70 A.D.), but ultimately His sacrifice would present an opportunity for grace that could save the world.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Professional Reminderer

"Therefore, I will always remind you about these things (go back and read previous passage)—even though you already know them and are standing firm in the truth you have been taught. And it is only right that I should keep on reminding you as long as I live." 2 Peter 1:13

I know "Reminderer" is not a real word…listen to my messages and you will discover I'm quite the wordsmith…


So a friend of mine, Brian Clark, told me about this idea. Like most professional reminderers (what? I'll explain later), I took Brian's idea and made it my own. Back to the idea…basically I read Scripture, allow the Holy Spirit to illuminate a word, verse, or passage and after meditating on it for awhile, I reproduce it into text form and send it out to students, parents, and leaders. To date, it's been pretty successful. I currently have about 60 people that regularly receive a text from me every morning.

My prayer is that those who receive the text will do the same. You might be surprised to discover that this is an actual "spiritual habit". The practice is called Lectio Divina or Divine Word. Let me know if you're interested, and I'll add you to the list. However, don't rely on my reproduction of 100-135 characters of scripture to get you through the day. If you receive my text, go back to the original chapter and read the verse in context. Allow God to speak to you through His Spirit and see how you're led individually. Branch out and develop your own discipline and share it back with me.

My Fellow Parents

Do you ever feel like this little fish? I know I do. It’s why I chose this specific picture.

Even in my house phrases like, “Because I said so,” and “I don’t care what so-in-so’s parents let them do…” are frequently expelled from my mouth. Although I know I’m not alone, as a parent, I get lonely. At times, we are limited in our view, can’t see the big picture, feel like we’re swimming against the flow, and forget we’re not alone. (Like the use of clichés?) But, life isn’t a cliché, a TV sitcom, a circle, or virtual… However, it is filled with great joys, heartbreaking pain, senselessness, and periods of the mundane. It’s Life and it’s Real, and quite honestly blazing fast. Do I really need to remind you? I seriously doubt it.

So. We’re all in this together, and we need each other now more than ever. (I can’t seem to shake the use of clichés. Solomon did say there isn’t anything new under the sun.) (I love parentheses and “quotation” marks “by the way”.)

So, so—let’s Unite. Untie ourselves from ourselves and tether together.

I hope you will enjoy my ramblings as I share my journey with you.

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