Tag Archives: CRBC

But God

Are there two words that mean more than these two in our vocabulary?

They are like a wrecking ball, a 2×4 upside the noggin, or a tsunami about to hit shore.  Or conversely it can be the touch of a loving hand at just the right time, a gentle word that turns away wrath, an ordinance specialist dismantling a highly explosive bomb, a heralded arrival of Father’s Glory, or a soothing balm.  They both show a side of things often forgotten.  They reveal a nature outside our own.  They highlight a sovereign, loving Father whose ways are far above our ways.

But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 1 Cor 1:27 NIV

Indeed he was ill, and almost died. But God had mercy on him, and not on him only but also on me, to spare me sorrow upon sorrow. Phil 2:27 NIV

But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,  Eph 2:4 NASB

So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.  Gal 4:7 NIV

I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth. 1 Cor 3:6 NASB

 

 

Blessed to be a blessing

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Sometimes when a thing is over used it becomes less significant.
Sometimes when a saying is repeated too often it becomes pithy.

I have thought the latter about the saying above.  There was a time when it was reiterated so often that it lost its punch.  ”you are blessed to be a blessing.”  I didn’t resent it, but it did become diluted to the point of it meaning less.

The reality of it is still true.  When Continue reading

B90X- Alter fire in Leviticus

I can remember the last thing the best man said at my wedding to Christie and I in his toast.  His name was Jeff.  He was a pretty lanky and thin fellow, as we all were back then.  And in typical Wildwood fashion, why do something once when you can do it twice as aggressive and with gusto, he raise not one, but two glasses of champagne.  Then said, “Keep the faith.”

That was approaching 32 years ago.  Little did I know how poignant his concluding words would be.

Faith must be kindled, stoked, maintained, perpetuated, supported, watered, fertilized, sustained, conserved, preserved, protected, upheld, and prolonged.

And most of all it must be kept.  It cannot be ignored, neglected, disregarded, abandoned, shirked, deserted, disclaimed, disowned, or disavowed.

I love reading the Bible.  I love reading the Bible in 90 days.  I love how the discipline of reading cover to cover forces me to read through material I normally would not.  I love how some ideas, words, or scenes of what may be happening in the text, come to life.

Last night I was reading through Leviticus.  First, I want to say that folks who disparage Leviticus and call it a sleeping aid, should stop that.  It is one of God’s words and needs to be treated thoughtfully and with care.

Three verses or ideas popped out at me:

brazen alter fireLeviticus 6:9 “Give Aaron and his sons this command: ‘These are the regulations for the burnt offering: The burnt offering is to remain on the altar hearth throughout the night, till morning, and the fire must be kept burning on the altar.”

Leviticus 6:12 “The fire on the altar must be kept burning; it must not go out. Every morning the priest is to add firewood and arrange the burnt offering on the fire and burn the fat of the fellowship offerings on it.”

Leviticus 6:13 “The fire must be kept burning on the altar continuously; it must not go out.”

If I understand this correctly, for nearly 40 years or more, the fire of the brazen alter was never extinguished or went out naturally.  Wow.  That required vigilance.  That required much help and attention.

Where did all that wood come from in the desert?  Did that mean someone had to carry ashes on their head from one camp location to another?  Who was responsible to find, fell, chop, split, haul, and maintain a wood pile for the alter?  What kind of wood was it typically? Did it burn hot and clean like scrub oak or messy like pine?  I digress.

The point Father was trying to make to me last night was that this fire could not be ignored.  It had to be kept and maintained.  Much like out faith, it can’t just go on cruise control, one will eventually run out of gas.

As my friend Jeff said, “Keep the faith.”  And not just with one glass, but with two, both hands raised, with gusto, with emphasis, and forever.

B90X – Aaron the High Priest

“Increase our Faith” (Luke 17:5).  As we travel through the scriptures this year, we are looking at how faith, belief, and trust are present in the stories and incidents of Bible characters.  The faith or lack of faith of a person ought to spur us on toward faith.  Let’s use the fruit and results of their lives to help us increase our faith.

Today, as I was reading the last half of Exodus, I was struck by the storyaaron the high priest of Aaron, Moses’ brother and first high priest of the Hebrew religious system.  Particularly chapter 32 when the people became impatient when the man of God spent more time in the presence of the Lord than they wanted him to.  In their impatient state they asked Aaron to make a god for them rather than faith in Yahwah, the invisible.  Interestingly, they even named the golden calf they fashioned Yahweh.

The questions I had of the text pertained to Aaron and how he failed in his faith.  He was the appointed and anointed High Priest.  He could speak for the Lord.  He saw miracles.  He was in the presence of Moses as He heard from God.  He knew all the spiritual and material articles of the tabernacle and vestments of the priests.  He had access to the urim and the thummim.

So what happened?  His faith failed.  His trust in the Lord wavered.  His memory of all that had happened waned.  Why?  What was the state of his soul that he could so easily be bent towards bowing the the request of the people?  What words or actions were so convincing that he agreed to go along with their crazy idea?  What part of “you will have no other gods before me,” did they not understand?  Where the voices so loud and obnoxious that he relented out of shear overwhelming?  What did Aaron think he would gain from the decision?  He built the alter, he planned the festival, he agreed to the revelry, he participated in the eating and drinking.

I am going to pray about this today.  I don’t want something like this to happen to me.

B90X “Increase Our Faith”

It is that time of the year again!

No, not tax time, B90X time.

As we gear up to read through the Bible in 90 days, the Lord, through a man of God, gave us the idea of reading this year through the lens of faith.  So as we read, look for signs of faith.  Look for men and women of faith.  Look for qualities of faith evident in people.  Even look for folks who don’t walk in faith and examine some of the reasons why or what may be going on for them to not live a life of faith.

Today, I found a couple of things.  First, in Genesis 4:26 it says, “At that time men began to call on the name of the LORD.”  If faith is believing and trusting, what was it that they knew for them to trust in and call out to?  How did the Lord reveal Himself for Him to be sought after?  How did they know to ‘call on’ the name of the Lord?  What did this kind of faith look like and did the Lord consider those calling out to be people of faith? Lots of unknowns there.

Enoch going upSecondly, what did the faith of Enoch look like.  He is found in Genesis 5:21-24.  The Bible says that he walked with God.  What did that walk look like on an everyday scale?  Then it says “God took him away.”  Enoch is one of two people who did not die and earthly death, Elijah is the other.  What was it about the faith of Enoch that he was taken away?  Where did he learn to live the kind of life that pleased Father so much that he was here one minute and gone the next?

You get the idea.  We are going to read through the entire Bible in 90 days.  We will come across verses and people we have read before or are meeting for the first time.  Allow the Holy Spirit to use their lives to help increase your faith (Luke 17:5)