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Last week was a much welcomed and needed chain of events for me. My friend Lloyd from Canada whom I have not seen since last November came to town for a worship conference. He brought his two sons whom I have not seen in 10 years, since they left Kansas City and went back home to Canada, and 4 other friends of theirs.

It was great to see his boys and catch up with them as well as hang out with Lloyd, he is a great man of God, we helped plant two churches here in KC. This is what our time together was like.

On Wednesday we had dinner together at a Chinese restaurant, had a amazing Chinese girl wait on us whom came to find out was a believer, we had not only great conversation among our selves but with her to.

After dinner we attended the night of worship at the conference lead by Chris Tomlin, so Wednesday was a full night of fellowship, food and worship. We had church, international church, six Canadians, one American and one Girl from China.

Friday we had lunch at Oklahoma Joe’s, voted best Bar-B-Que in the country this year. Had a great time of fellowship and food. Then we went to IHOP and had a time of worship with Misty Edwards leading worship, one of the most passionate lovers of God around.

After 2+ hours of worship we went to the mall, where Lloyd ran into Herbert a guy he did ministry with in Africa 3 years ago, who has been involved at IHOP (House of prayer) and he and his wife to be are leaving at year end to plant a church in Columbia. After a great time of fellowship with them, leaning about Herbert his wife to be what God has been doing with them and where He is taking them. We went to some old friend I have not seen in a couple of years from my old church plant. We all had a home made spaghetti dinner. Two guys from China joined us that are staying with them, so it was very international, Americans, Canadians, Chinese setting down to eat Italian food. We had church again, all day church that is. Then we went out for ice cream and a movie. Then sadly my friends had to head back.

But what a time of deep fellowship in Christ, every day should be like that, good friends, good food, great worship and Christ in the middle of it all. That’s church. I miss those days when that was the norm for me. I want my life to be like that again, that to be a normal day in my life. All day church.

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I feel the need to splash the cold, but refreshing water of gospel truth in my face every morning for now on.

Why? The gospel reminds me not only of my right standing before God, but also that I brought nothing to the table with respect to my standing with God. The gospel is not something we leave at the front door to pursue Christianity without, as most do. I believe the abandoned of the gospel was at the heart of what Paul was referring to when he got upset with the Galliano. When he said that they began in the Spirit but deemed it necessary to carry out their life in Christ absent of the very thing that gave them life, the gospel (Galliano 3:3). They apparently thought, as do many Christians do today that the gospel was for the unsaved to hear to be saved but not needed to facilitate growth in or maintain their walk with Christ.

Without the foundation of the gospel, sanctification can become just a process of sin management, which is what it is for most Christians today. The gospel has been replaced with programs and how to strategies to keep their “sin managed”. It places a focus on me, my sins, my ability and my strength to live out Christianity. My self and other to define who I am. Versus focusing on Christ, His work, His power, and who I am in Christ. Paul indicates in Romans 7:7-14, that highlighting the sin to avoid will only make one gravitate towards it, this is why we must focus on the gospel and Christ.

The gospel ensures dependence on the work of the Spirit, since it is He who enables the believer to walk according to the gospel. The Spirit bears testimony to Christ and facilitates obedience to the gospel. We are able to accomplish this work because of the indwelt Spirit and His gifting not of anything, means of our own doings.

The gospel is the foundation of our Christian being. Spiritual maturity requires the gospel on an on-going basis. Growth and true fellowship cannot happen without it. So the next time we think the gospel is just for beginners, or that it is a message for only the lost, lets think again.

Therefore I chose to do as I stated above, to splash the cold, but refreshing water of gospel truth in my face every morning. To renew my mind every morning with the gospel, to wash away the filth of this world and the lies the enemy bombards me with daily to erode away the truth of the gospel and my position before God in Yeshua, my messiah, and Lord.

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Normally anything that comes our of church denominations I run screaming from, I have nothing to do with them because I know scripturally they are not to exist. Because they divide the body of Christ so I avoid them like the plague.

But early this year the Southern Baptist Convention passed a resolution on the need for their churches to be centered on the gospel. This resolution is not only very good but is worth passing on and for all churches to take acting on. Here is a different way of breaking down the concepts in the resolution and added scripture to it that Trevin Wax did to make it more palatable for the average Joe.

I would recommend reading this over and over tell it soaks deep into your mind and soul. Mediate on it day and night tell it because part of your DNA.

Gospel Truth

We are, every one of us, sinners against God and, apart from the gospel of Jesus Christ, deserving of only condemnation.

* For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23)
* For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom. 6:23) (more…)

51ma-qyg1lL“The Kingdom Life” edited by Alan Andrews with several authors contributing to it, explores the practical theology of spiritual formation. The book brakes down  spiritual formation into two parts, process and theological. The books begins with the seven process elements and three theological elements.

The book does not go into great detail on all the steps for spiritual formation, and I would have liked for it to have more steps/examples than those given. I for one like to have more that the destination given to to, I like a good road map to get to the destination.

Several parts do overlap, but over all it is a good overview of discipleship and spiritual formation. A good recommended for a new Christian as well as for mature Christian to keep your mind refreshed and on keep on track with your spiritual formation.

Your life will truly be changed as you apply the truths of this book to your life. Put into practice what it says, it is a worthy read that you will benefit from no matter where you are in your walk with Christ. Here is a quote from page 119 that I like.

The spiritual heart can be strengthened, it’s passions made greater. Can we imagine that by engaging God in the way He recommends in Scripture, we can have a passionate spiritual heart that directs our transformation? That it would keep the internal and external in balance? That would bring congruency to all of life? It is crucial to understand that one does not arrive at such a state by wishing and hoping.”

That is what the book is about, knowing, applying, doing.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising

Not only does everything in our lives that is inconsistent with the Kingdom of God start to die the moment we encounter Him, but the superior, supernatural reality of His Kingdom starts to come alive in us. It is not possible to encounter One so overwhelming and maintain the status quo.

Those who respond to the invitation find little else to live for. Those who say no spend their lives looking for an adequate replacement. And there is none to be found, anywhere. – Pastor Bill Johnson

Love this statement by Pastor Bill Johnson, just to bad this truth is not being taught from every pulpit in America. All but the last two sentences of this quote should be found true of everyone who claims they are saved, a Christian.

6-2910Question that most people ask themselves is “What do I want to do with my life?” “What is my purpose?” “What is God’s will for my life?”, some of us seem to be asking that question year after year. It seems like the majority of people I talk with are seeking the answer to some form of those questions.

I think most of the time we answer those questions ether tied to the past, if I would have…I would be doing this… having this life. If only I would have done…….. I could be doing…! Or we make it futuristic, well if this happens….when I get……I will have the life I want. If God will……….then I will……….! If God would just speak! So until then we stand there like deer in headlight, dead in our tracks.

I read something today that opened my eyes, give me a possible answer, or at lest something to think about. “Just start creating life/purpose right now, right where you are with what you have and know, our life can only happen in the present moment, not tomorrow or in the next month”.

Maybe shifting our focus from thinking about what we don’t know to what we do know, that will enable us to real purpose right now and answer our questions above.

Having said that, in the specific question, “What is God’s will for me?” So many people do no ministry because they are waiting to find out God’s will.

The best way to know God’s will, is by doing what you know to do, so start doing what God has already told every follower of Christ is His will for your life, the calling of every follower is in scripture.

Like start with Mark 16:15, “And He said unto them, Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” So start today, right now sharing the gospel, with whom, with everyone you meet during the day, there is your answer. You do not need to wait for anything more, no sign from above, no training needed, because Jesus said He would give you what to say even, Mark 13:11.

More of God’s will for you…… Matthew 28:16-20, start making disciples, so start discipling someone, find someone to pour your life into, the life of Christ into. Start teaching the word of God to others, start with your family if you are married.

Next, starting doing Matthew 25:31-46 today, go feed the hungry, give a drink to the thirsty, cloth the naked, visit and pray for the sick, take in a stranger in need. That is a full day, full day of purpose right there, and those are God’s will for you, your life.

Putting everything together

  1. Preach the Gospel to everyone you meet daily.
  2. Be discipling others.
  3. Be teaching the word of God to others.
  4. Be feeding the hungry.
  5. Giving drink, water to the thirsty.
  6. Clothing the naked.
  7. visiting and praying for the sick.
  8. Take in a stranger in need.

By the way living like that is also being missional.

Mother Teresa said “If you can’t feed a hundred people, feed just one.” and all of us can do that, if only that.

So if you are looking for the answer to “What do I want to do with my life” “What is God’s will for my life”, the above just might be the answer, the place to start anyway. Something to think about anyway.

624-10A survey of a red light area of Bombay conducted by Indian Health Organization shows 20% of the 100,000 prostitutes are children.

It was estimated that in Delhi 50% of the prostitutes are Devadasis. Devadasis are children/girls who Parents devote them at or before the age of 10 to the Devadasi practice, the tradition that considers the young girls “married” to the goddess of fertility, Yellamma. These girls are then offered for sexual services after their first menstruation until they become “too old and unattractive.

They are considered to be the servants of god as they are married to the goddess Yellamma, and their service is to provide sex to all, it’s estimated that 4,000 to 5,000 girls are dedicated every year to the goddess for this purpose in Delhi alone, but no one will revile the real numbers.

Abhorrent as that is, we in America cannot point our fingers at them in discuss when American parents are doing the same thing right here, or at lest looking the other way letting others do it to their children and the children of others. Delivering their children over to others who are letting others use them for sex.

The school district of Provincetown, Mass passed a new policy that takes effect this school year that allows the distribution of condoms to students in all schools, regardless of their age. Not only will condoms made available to them, the school will also provide instructions on how to use them, and all with out parental consent needed. But in reality the parents are giving consent by not doing anything about the policy, like firing the school board and removing the policy.

When I was in High School not only could we not get condom’s but if you where caught having sex in school. Your parents would have been called in and you would be expelled. Today a if a 15, 13 or even 7 year old gets caught, not only will they not call in your parents or expel you. But they will simple give you a condom and give you any instructions you need to have sex and send you on your way. That is a sad state of affairs when our public schools have become just like Yellamma, allowing young girls to be sex objects for others.

True not all school district do this for elementary age children, but they do it for middle and high school kids and just like in Mass it is only a matter of time before it spreads across the land.

Read about Provincetown story here.

061110This year is the 50th anniversary of Youth With A Mission, YWAM, they have sent over 2 million into the mission field in those 50 years. And I thank God to have been one of them, I spent 3 years with YWAM as a missionary. They where 3 of the best years in my life so far, I spent my time working to rescue teens living on the streets, mostly girls under the age of 18 whom where victims of human trafficking. We worked the streets in an area estimated to have around 30,000 to 40,000 teens living on the streets, all of them in prostitution, and drugs as well. The youngest rescued by our ministry was 11, yes a 11 year old girl living on the streets selling her self to survive. They were trying years, it was a hard ministry to do most of the time, the things I witnessed, man at his worst, but also was a time of great joy, so many teens where rescue, the community life I had with my fellow YWAM’s was true church in action, the true Christian life seen the books of Acts.

On November 28, 2010, yammers and friends of YWAM from around the globe will converge on the UofN Kona campus for a six day ­celebration of YWAM’s 50th Jubilee. I will share some of my stories and experiences in YWAM between now and the end of the year.

See YWAM 50th anniversary website>>>

060810How things have changed over the last 30 years, I was thinking as I was doing my evening bible study that how 20 years ago you could go to the tape library, book store of just about any church and could find the pastors teaching on any verse of the bible. The reason was most pastors taught through the bible, usually verse by verse.

Having spent 10 years at Calvary Chapel, I had heard teaching on every verse in the bible about two and a half times. I could go to the church book store and for $2.00 get teaching of any chapter of any book of the bible and take it home and hear teaching on it. Today I dare you to even find a church who’s pastor teaches the entire bible verse by verse. You will not find a CD with teaching on every verse of the bible for you to pick up, and that is a tragedy.

Today people are not being taught the word of God, they have no knowledge of God’s word, the Apostle Paul stated “for I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole counsel of God.” (Act 20:27). Meaning he left out nothing of God’s word. But pastors today are shrinking from declaring the “whole counsel of God” that is all of scripture, all of the word of God.

The only places I know one can get, find verse by verse teaching for sure, find a library of CD covering every verse of the bible, that is every verse read and taught on is at Calvary Chapel, my old church, as well as most of the other Calvary Chapel’s. Pastors like Mark Driscoll and John Macarthur cover just about every verse of a book.  People say that that bible teaching is widely available to anyone in the US, but that is not true, we have a lot of teaching about the word of God, but not actual teaching of the word of God. We have a lot of teaching that tickles the ears, but not verse by verse teaching.

This must change, we need to fill the pulpit with men who can and do teach as the Apostle Paul stated “the whole counsel of God.” that is every word of scriptures, teach verse by verse through the bible leaving out nothing.

4179d7gNg5LFaithbook of Jesus is a A one-year devotion written by Renee Johnson who is passionate about discipleship, especially for those who are 20-something, her own generation. The book is not written to be a bible study, or a theological based teaching of the bible but rather a 20-something woman sharing her walk with Christ. Seeking to inspire others to seek a closer relationship with God.

She is simply being honest in sharing what she learned in her daily walk, her seeking of God in her daily devotions. Renee is eager to connect with others in their faith journey with God.

I have followed Renee for a couple of years on twitter and can tell you she is sincere in her desire to inspire others to seek the Lord and connect with God daily. She has a great passion to see other draw close to God. She has a real life filled with up’s and downs and is very honest in her sharing of relationship with God.

If you are a 20-something you can get some inspiration from reading this book, see a real persons dealing with life with God. Each day is a day from her life and the issues and struggles she was encountering and how she heard God in the mist of them.

Two unique feature is at the bottom of each page Renee shares others one sentence contribution to the subject or verse. And she ask her readers to interact with her and others on her website, to enter into the conservation of the days devotion, to add their voice to the conversation, what God is saying to them.

Renee has a wonderful personality and love for others, and for a first time writer in her 20’s she has done a great job. If you are in the targeted age group of this book and are seeking a daily devotional, pick up a copy.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising