We Must Pray for Those Who Can Not!

Late term abortion under the Women’s Equality Act is a bill that is trying to be passed in congress that allows women to abort harmless babies who may never have a voice to defend themselves unless we pray. As a Christian we must not sit back while this notorious act is trying to be passed in New York. It is our duty, get involved in the fight for those who cannot fight for their own lives and pray with me because this is a tragedy. Please do whatever you can to get involved this breaks my heart.

Abortion

“If you’re a young woman in here, or maybe an older woman—I didn’t say old; I said older woman—and you were pregnant in your first or second trimester, and you were driving toward the abortion clinic to have an abortion, and on the way to the abortion clinic you were hit by a drunk driver, that person is charged with involuntary manslaughter of your baby. But if you make it to the clinic, the doctor in the clinic is legally allowed to take a vacuum pump and rip that baby to shreds in your womb.”

-Matt Chandler

 

Have We Lost Our First Love?

This is a really great article by Tom S. Rainer from his site. Please read this short and powerful message that we all must take to heart http://thomrainer.com/2014/01/13/an-open-letter-to-my-denomination-have-we-lost-our-first-love/

Dear Southern Baptists:

I could be writing to a broader audience. Perhaps I should be. And I know many outside our denomination will read this brief letter. I hope those readers will bear with me as I have a “family discussion.”

Please hear me clearly. I am not writing out of any sense of superiority. Indeed, many of you could put me to shame. But my heart is breaking with what I perceive to be a loss of passion for those who do not know Christ. Many of you have seen the numbers. We are reaching fewer people for the gospel today than we did decades ago when we were a much smaller group.

The First Love

Where is the passion in most of our churches to reach the lost? Where is the passion among our leaders, both in our churches and in our denomination? Jesus told those at the church at Ephesus that they had sound doctrine, that they hated evil (Revelation 2:1-7). But He also told them they had lost their first love. When we truly love Jesus with all of our hearts, we can’t help but tell others about Him. We can’t help but share the good news.

I thank God for our contending for the faith. I thank God for our affirmation of the total truthfulness of Scripture. I thank God for orthodoxy. But I pray that it is not becoming a dead orthodoxy—an orthodoxy that has lost its first love.

The Purpose of the Letter

The purpose of this letter is not to chastise. I am a messed up sinner who has no right to look at the splinter in the eyes of my brothers and sisters when I need to deal with the plank in my own eye. I need to fall more deeply in love with Jesus. I need to share His love as part of my very being. In His power I must do more and I must do better.

No, the purpose of this letter is simply to share a broken heart, and to express a heartfelt desire to change. I must love Jesus more deeply and tell others about Him more often. I must show Christ’s love not only with my words, but with every action and interaction I have. I must be more like Him every day.

I have no proposal. I have no new programs for now. I simply have a burden.

And as a commitment to God first, but then a commitment to you, I am asking God to lead me to love Him more deeply than I ever have. I am asking God to put people in my life where I can show His love, and tell them about my Savior.

It Must Begin with Me

My life’s desire is to glorify God by loving Him with all my heart. And I have no right to say that unless I am so much in love with Him that I “am unable to stop speaking about what (I) have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20). Evangelism must be as natural to me as breathing.

Pastors, will you join me in this plea? Will you be an evangelistic example for the churches God has called you to serve? Laypersons, will you pray for evangelistic hearts in your own lives? I must make that prayer a part of my life every day.

Have we lost our first love? Is that love reflected in in how we share the gospel of Christ every day?

May God break me until I am all His, telling others about His Son every day.

And may the sharing of the good news of Christ once again become the focus of all our lives in the churches of our denomination.

Making Jesus More Real

We all know we do not evangelize enough and I think one problem is that we do not really believe that Jesus is real. It is also another reason why we do not pray as much as we should and saturate our time in our Bibles. I use to live at 101 Post Lane and that is a fact. I never have a problem telling anyone this reality in my life. One can observe it with their eyes and physically touch the structure and I’m sure there is some smell that is distinct about 101 Post lane. I’m never afraid to tell anyone this if they asked me where I lived, I say unashamedly and unconsciously, “101 Post Lane.”

The house is so real to me that I do not even think of ways to prove that it is true. I just say this is the house I lived at. I never studied the longitude or latitude of the house or where it is located geographically. I know the house is true because I lived there. I dwelled in it, and had my bed upstairs. I spent hours in that house knowing from personal experience that this house is a house.

My biggest obstacle is making Jesus more real to me each day. And one of the ways I encourage that and strengthen that weakness is dwelling in the Word of God. Think about what it would look like to rest in the scripture like we do before we go to bed. Imagine if we walked through the front doors of the Gospel every morning and talked to God like we do with our friends. Imagine if our minds were plugged into the fount of Jesus Christ and not the computer. The eyes fixed on the resurrection and not the T.V the voice shouting songs and hymns to God and not at each other. Dinner would be the most sacred time. A time to treasure and a time to remember. The best Word from God is prepared with the finest and sweetest songs of worship to offer up on the alter of our hearts.

Some people may disagree with me but I can assure you that what we are doing is clearly not working. Do you want a change in your life? Do you think that if you transferred all your time from the computer and television to the Word of God you would actually be doing what God has called you to do? I’m sure there are millions of hungry Christians out there who don’t want to change a thing in their life to satisfy it. Discipline the flesh and go to the closet to God for this holy anointing. Read God’s Word on your face, beg God to fill you. Jesus promises those who really, “hunger and thirst for righteousness will be filled (Matt 5). Seek it diligently and fervently, press God until the floorboards begin to wear from under your knees and once you are filled press him again.

Farming a Christian Image

My great grandfather, grandfather and my Dad are all farmers, which makes me a farmer’s son. I have learned that there is something intimidating about this reality. When I introduce myself commonly the conversation leads into the context in which I was born on a farm and to that most people will immediately begin complimenting me. They say things like, “oh you must be a hard worker?” and others like, “Its not easy being a farmer, having to wake up early on the farm to milk cows.” In addition to, “It takes a lot of strength to do what you do.”

There are hundreds of different things people tell me and yes to some degree I do fulfill that image. However, I would never boast about it and say, “well yeah I fulfill that image completely,” because that is simply not true. I know my Dad probably considers me more as a city boy then a farmer.

Nevertheless there is this image that people have in their minds when they think of a farmer. One who is strong enough to stack straw, yet gentle enough to wean a newborn calf. One who is patent in hope of a good harvest and always optimistic for good weather. Ever since the beginning of time there has always been farmers. As far back as the great Egyptian Empire there were farmers and truthfully little has changed. Farmers go back as early as our first Parents Adam and Eve when they were removed from the Garden they had to work the land  “by the sweat of” their face (Gen. 3:17-19).

It is also the same with this image that we as Christians bear. However it does not mean what it did years ago. It was long before my time but when someone called themselves a Christian in days past it use to mean something. It used to mean that you read your Bibles every day. Today’s Christian don’t seem to know the difference between the Christian Bible and their newspaper. At one time it used to mean your day began on your knees before God but now it means if your not up to date with whatever is going on in Hollywood your considered culturally abnormal. Christianity use to mean that you were in the business of advancing the Gospel not the business of having the latest technology or better Facebook update or twitter update and my question for you this evening is have we compromised what it means to be a Christian for something that is really just an image of ourselves?

What makes my Dad a farmer is not that he goes to farm shows or hangs out at farm meetings at a local church like some club. It is equally true that he is not a farmer if he talks like a farmer and talks tractor. That makes him no more a farmer than someone who just really likes farming as an obsession.  My Dad is a farmer because he gets up at 5:00 in the morning every day to do what farmers do. It is his doing that fulfills the image of being a farmer. If my Dad’s master who is on earth demands his time at 5 in the morning should our heavenly master not demand from us our attention earlier in the morning?

Christianity we think if we go to church and join this club that will satisfy what it means to bear this image of a Christian. The image of a Christian is the greatest honor to have, a slave to Christ, a title I believe we must strive as Paul writes to have said of ourselves, “well done good and faithful servant (Matt. 25:23).”

Some Evangelism Fun!

These are some experiences that I wrote down after evangelizing to some people around my campus area during the fall semester. It is not very detailed but I thought I put it up anyways. The first little section is about a time where I was leading two younger women who were evangelizing for their first time. The second section is a compilation of one time I went out and talked to nearly 20 people.

 

My connection group down South at my Church, First Baptist Euless, started an evangelism Sunday ministry where after service and class we all go out and share the gospel to the houses and neighborhoods next to our Church. It is amazing despite the size of our Church, like the size of three football fields in square footage people just down the road have never heard of our place. Granted that the Church is situated right in between two really big cities of at least eight hundred thousand people together it is really not too surprising. We split into groups and my group was assigned a street and we were responsible to knock on every door there until we finished. Door after door we had little success. One after another each person was telling us that they were Buddhist. One door we knocked on I remembered an old woman coming to the door telling us that she attended a Presbyterian Church down the road. That was great news because between the Baptist and Presbyterians our doctrine is very similar. However, when we told her that we were Baptist, she said the funniest thing, “great I’m surrounded by Baptist.” To which we said nothing because she said it in a negative tone, we concluded things and then walk away. I said to the others with me long after the old woman had closed her door, “Well she was mistaken she’s actually surrounded by Buddhist.”

 

It was a Thursday afternoon sometime during the semester I left class convicted and determined by the teaching given by my professor in New Testament. I had to tell someone the Gospel, I usually share all my insights with my twin brother but that was not enough I needed to tell someone this good news that actually needed it. My brother is already a Christian and has been attending Southwestern for a while. I usually wait every Saturday to go out but for whatever reason it was like my feet grew a conscious and decided to make all the decisions and I left my conversation with my brother without telling him where or what I was doing because quite frankly this was a matter between God and I. With my non-glided paged Bible in hand (because people will run the other way if they see glided pages) I left and said I would talk to anyone I saw. The first group I ran into was a group of four who were playing basketball. I got their attention, introduced myself, and told them all about the gospel. These were younger gentleman who all claimed a stock in Catholicism but I could tell that they knew nothing of the saving power of Jesus Christ. I had one man’s attention pretty strongly, another wanted to make it more into a joke, and he was distracting the other two. I shared with them the gospel and asked if they wanted to make a profession of faith but they were not interested. I saw another gentleman filling up his car at the gas-station and I approached him and got his attention and as I was telling him what I was doing he immediately welcomed me and thanked me for doing what I was doing. He was a Christian. He gave me a few encouraging words then off I went. I talked to another two at a different gas station down the road who said they didn’t need Jesus and I could read the body language and their actual language and they didn’t want to talk anymore. I did run into another man who looked homeless less then a block down and I told him the entire gospel but like the basketball players he didn’t want any part in it. Up the road from there I did run into two more Catholics and with all Catholics I ask them the same question, “What must one do to get into heaven?” I always get the same answer back, something to the effect of; we have to be a good humanitarian and morally and ethically good. I point them to Ephesians where it says that we are not saved by works but by grace. For what it was worth I left these gentlemen with John 8:31 and that is Jesus’ true disciples abide in the Word. Walking down the road from there I saw a man in front of me walking pretty quickly but I picked up the speed into a light jog. I grabbed his attention before he ran off on me and recognized that he was trying to get somewhere quick so I just asked if I could walk with him. He said that was fine. I told him the entire gospel and he had a good response to it but there was no indication of a thorough work of grace in his life. His wife’s car actually ran out of gas down the road and I was glad to help them push the car into a parking lot and out of traffic. We continued our conversation, I cannot remember his questions but his family was not doing well financially and I walked with him and had the blessing to pay for his gas bill. He said he would seriously think about Christianity and what we said. I told him to read the Words of God himself in the Gospel of John. It was getting late, but I was not done, I talked to three other gentleman and one in particular could not understand the problem of pain and suffering and I explained it to him the best I could. His worldview was a blend of all these different ideologies. I could tell he knew nothing about them seriously but was more interested in challenging me but I could definitely see that he was struggling with something serious. I tried to untangle his worldview without offending him but it was of no use from what I could tell when I left him.