Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The New Mantra

I heard this song a while back, and then my good friend Matt decided to use it as a worship song one weekend I was filling in with his music team.  It has left an indelable mark on my life.  It is a conduit through which God has changed my perspective on reaching out to people.  I now pass this along to you and hope you will see in it what I have seen, or hear in it what God is saying to you. 

I Refuse by Josh Wilson

Sometimes I just want to close my eyes
And act like everyone's alright
When I know they're not
This world needs God, but its easier to stand and watch
I could say a pray and just move one
Like nothing's wrong
But I Refuse

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose, not to move
But I Refuse

I can hear the least of these, calling out so desperately
And I know we are the hands and feet, of you Oh God
So if You say move, its time for me to follow through
And do what I was made to do
And show them who you are

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
Do do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose, not to move

But I Refuse, to stand and watch the weary and lost cry out for help
I Refuse to turn my back and act like all is well
I Refuse to stay unchanged, to wait another day to die to myself
I Refuse to make one more excuse

I don't want to live like I don't care
I don't want to say another empty prayer
Oh, I Refuse to sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
I could choose, not to move,

But I Refuse.

I hope you do too.....


Monday, December 12, 2011

Letter to a Quarterback

"No one lights a lamp, then hides it in a drawer.  It's put on a lamp stand so those entering the room have light to see where they are going."  Luke 11:33 MSG

Dear Tim,

Its been a tough road for you the past couple of years, at least it seems that way on first take from all the scrutiny and criticism you have received about your style of football and the supposed "finesse"  you should be playing with.  Or has it really been that tough........for you?  Never has there been an athlete of your caliber, with your integrity, with you leadership ability, and with your humility.  You're not the best at what you do, but you do it the best you can.  You're not out there to make a name for yourself because you're out there to make a name for Him.

I like it and encourage you to keep it up.  I write this in homage, not to you Tim, but to the awesome God whom we serve.  Its because of Him that you have this opportunity:  and thus far you have served Him well. The scrutiny you are under just shows that most people don't understand what drives you, including those who say they know and serve the same God we do.  It's not for money, or for the spotlight, or for anything else that you do what you do, except this one thing:  serving an awesome God and spreading his message to the world.  You're a preacher, but your pulpit is the football field.  You attend church, yet its walls are thousands of screaming fans with a roof of the heavens.  Your have a Sunday service, but this service is far greater than if you were sitting inside a building listening to a minister speak. 

Funny thing about this whole situation is this:  you are making more people think about God than anyone else in the sports world has ever done.  I don't care if you win or lose Tim.  I don't care if you stay with the Broncos or not Tim.  What I do care about is this:  that you stay focused on what really matters.  The media will try to bring you down; doubters will try to bring you down; critics will try to bring you down; and we know who else is working to bring you down.  But do not be distracted.  Your message to the world seems to be these three simple principles:  Love God, Love Others, Lead with Humility and Hard Work.  Keep that out front of you always.

If I could only be as strong as you some days.  You are an inspiration to a whole slew of people looking for ways to be strong in their faith despite public opposition.  Don't give in, and keep fighting the good fight, my brother in Christ. 

Keep your lamp high and bright for everyone to see.  Whether they agree or not, it doesn't matter to us.  What matters is that the message is getting out there and people are beginning to think........seeds are being planted around water coolers, in carpools, at stadiums and at sports bars. 

Seeds are starting to sprout...............

With all my respect,


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Humility- The Other Crow Meat

"Instead of being motivated by selfish ambition or vanity, each of you should, in humility, be moved to treat one another as more important than yourself............You should have the same attitude towards one another that Christ Jesus had.........He humbled himself, by becoming obedient to death-even death on a cross!"
Philippians 2:3, 5, 8

Yesterday we talked about how we should embrace the opportunities Christ sets in front of us through the bad example of other Christ-followers.  The are so many examples of mis-guided Christ followers, whose hearts seem to want to do the right thing, but they are led astray by someone with "selfish ambition or vanity." It saddens my heart to see so many people misguided and tainted by the few who have no humility, but only serve to serve themselves. 

Our God is a God of love, not hatred and bitterness towards us.  He despises the sin, but loves even the worst sinners because they are His creation.  We need to have the same attitude towards all people: Love God, Love Others.  Having a humble heart, focused on God and not ourselves is the only way to achieve this.  Spewing hate, insults, and bigotry only serves the one who throws it, not our awesome God. 

If we want to humble ourselves before God and serve others, we must not hate or judge. Period.


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

It Doesn't Matter

"What is the result?  Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is being proclaimed, and in this I rejoice.  Yes, and I will continue to rejoice......"  Phil 1:18 (NET)

Last post we talked about Paul, and all he was going though during his imprisonment in Rome.  On top of living in a dungeon, other so-called "Christians" were out in Rome smearing his name and spreading the gospel in ways that were not congruent with the truth or because of "selfish ambition." But as we see in verse 18, it really didn't matter what was happening, as long as Christ's name was being proclaimed. 

You see, as Christ followers, we sit here more often than not and shake our heads in shame or condemn those who are not spreading the truth as we feel it should be spread.  For a long time, I held animosity against the man on the corner screaming through the bullhorn, or the people of Westboro Baptist Church who rant and rave all over the place.  Yes, let me make this clear, I do not agree with them or how they conduct themselves.  But what is most important is not what these people are saying, but that no matter what, people are hearing about Christ.  Yes, its not the perfect way.  Yes, its abrasive, unkind, uncouth, disgusting and revolting,and mostly not out of love.  But find the silver lining in the cloud as Paul did:  Christs name is getting out there. 

At least people are hearing his name.  What matters most is people who may not know Christ will come to us and start asking questions:  Do all Christians really believe that?  Why are they so hateful?  Is that really what Jesus taught?  Does the Bible really teach us to hate like that?

And then the door is opened.........

Seeds can be planted...........

And its time to capitalize on the opportunity we have.......think about it.


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Ode to Monty Python

"I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that my situation has actually turned out to advance the gospel:"
- Phil 1:12

Who has seen Monty Python's Life of Brian?  This has to be one of the funniest movies the Monty Python bunch put on besides their Holy Grail movie.  In this movie, Brian, the main character, is actually mistaken for Jesus Christ and everyone is following him around as if he is the Messiah.  Many Christians would see this movie and scream blasphemy.  Grow a sense of humor, folks.  At the end of the movie, there are guys on crucifixes who begin singing a song.  "Always look on the bright side of life, (whistling in tune and key of the music)....." 

So my point is this: Paul always looked on the bright side of life, that is, his life in Christ Jesus.  He never saw his suffering as such, but really looked for the way in which he could use his dilemma to further the kingdom of God.  While he was writing his letter to the Philippians, Paul was sitting in a Roman dungeon, chained to a wall and sitting in his own bodily waist.  What could be worse than that?  What he did was use the opportunity to talk with the guards and other prisoners and actually bring many of them to Christ.  How awesome is that? 

So no matter how hard our situation may be, we always need to look on the bright side of our life in Christ Jesus and find how we can use our circumstances to advance his kingdom. 

I will address the Monty Python, Life of Brian, blasphemy thing tomorrow.  Trust me, you will see the bad things that Christians do in a whole new light.