Monday, November 26, 2007

better than I said it

I preached on gratitude yesterday. Today, I learned of perspective by John Piper that says it even better. Check out "Ganging Up On Gratitude". Thanks to Chris Webster for the link.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

returning thanks

We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven; we have been preserved these many years in peace and prosperity; we have grown in numbers, wealth and power as no other nation has ever grown.

But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us, and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God who made us.
It has seemed to me fit and proper that God should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November as a day of thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens.

–––Abraham Lincoln, October 3, 1863

Friday, November 16, 2007

2 timothy 2:2

"And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others."

This verse has made my wheels turn for the last 15 years. It's a charge to multiply, to spiritual reproduce. It's a commission given by the Apostle Paul to his young disciple, Timothy. Paul is passing the baton. But, it's more than that. Paul is urging Timothy to pass it on to others as well. I notice 4 generations mentioned in this passage: "And the things you (2nd generation, Timothy) have heard me (1st generation, Paul) say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men (3rd generation) who will also be qualified to teach others (4th generation)." This is what disciplemaking is all about. Spiritually reproducing ourselves in spiritual reproducers.

Recently, I have begun two journeys that have made my heart beat a little faster. On Thursday mornings, I join Keith Smith in discipling 3 young men in our church. We have started exploring what the Bible is and what its story is from 30,000 feet. I'm simply passing on the spiritual lessons that I have learned from my mentors. Last week, I heard that one of these young men repeated our week's lesson to several friends. Count 'em. That's 4 generations!

I started this same kind of discipleship with my oldest son, Grant. For several years, I have been taking one of my kids to breakfast on Fridays. Today, Grant and I began more intentional training. I'm not sure which direction we'll head. But, I just know that I have a responsibility to be strategically spiritual with deposit whatever I have learned into him. That's discipleship. Hopefully, I'm preparing him for a lifetime of disciple-making. And, I'm looking forward to the future generations that may walk with Christ because of the investment that I make now. Soli Deo Gloria!

Monday, November 12, 2007

make a difference to a marine

Hey friends. I'm gonna use this blog to request a favor. My nephew, Adam Wroblski (Ro-bless-kee) is serving in Iraq. He's homesick and, for some reason, isn't getting mail that others are sending. The quickest way for him to get a note of encouragement would be through Would you be open to showing love to a soldier that you've never met? Because I cannot post his personal information on this site, please email me and I will send you directions on sending him a quick letter. Thanks!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

be a fugleman

How's your vocabulary? Enrich your word power and take a hit out of hunger at the same time:

Thursday, November 8, 2007

my story | HIStory

This morning, our staff gathered for our Thursday chapel--a weekly opportunity to be a team and family together. The topic today, led by Keith Smith, was our personal testimonies. One-by-one, about a dozen people told the great story of how God met them. For one, it was in a jail cell. For another, it was through the faithful prayers of a devoted grandmother. For another, it was miraculous healing. Still another managed triple baptisms...just to be sure.

I made two observations from our sharing. First, every story is picture of grace. Years ago, I heard someone remark that the person who is born to Christian parents and comes to know Christ at an early age is as much a recipient of grace as the person rescued from a lifestyle of outward rebellion and overt sin. How blessed God is to protect some people from the involvement and effects of sin.

Second, I was struck by the uniqueness of every story. Young or old, a single moment or a year-long process, in crisis or in joy. Everybody has a story all their own. Or all God's own. Because no matter how diverse, every story comes down to one common denominator: God's grace saving undeserving sinners and granting them unimaginable riches. Now that's my story and I'm sticking to it. Soli Deo Gloria.