Lake Atitlan

Lake Atitlan

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The World We Forget

I live in a fairly affluent county in Texas. This week I had opportunity to see quite a bit of the extravagance of our American culture and it really shook me. My friend Jeff posted a link in his daily devotional email that helps us think about the "world we forget."

Our economy is struggling and much more in other parts of the nation than in Texas. This link to Global Issues does bring some perspective to our own struggles. What does "being poor" really look like?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Creation and the Creator

We just got back from a family vacation where we spent time in Alberta, Canada with extended family and toured some beautiful places in the Canadian Rockies. This photo was taken with my phone camera at Lake Moraine on a beautiful July morning. It reminded me of the glory of God declared in and through His creation. The Bible says, "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world." (Psalm 19:1-4; cf. Psalm 97:6) The creation points majestically to the Creator.

As I stood on the shores of the lake I was reminded of the great old hymn "How Great Thou Art." The words to the song go like this:

O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder,
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.
When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing;
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
Then I shall bow, in humble adoration,
And then proclaim: "My God, how great Thou art!"

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Don't Waste Your Cancer

I was reading a post from one of my favorite writers, Stacie Smith. She pointed toward a great article by John Piper titled, "Don't Waste Your Cancer." Cancer touches most of us at some level and it's a good read for us all.

Worry, Prayer, Planning

Pastor Mark Beeson wrote about being asked the difference between worry, prayer, and planning. Here are his responses:

First.

Worry hurts you. Prayer inspires you. Planning prepares you.

Second.

Worry is natural. Prayer is supernatural. Planning intertwines the natural (the world as it is) with the supernatural (the world as it could be and should be).

Third.

Worry drains you. Prayer fills you. Planning fulfills you.

Fourth.

Worry isolates you. Prayer connects you. Planning integrates you.

Fifth.

Worry shrinks your vision. Prayer expands your vision. Planning enables your vision to come true.

Sixth.

Worry focuses on limiting circumstances and limited resources. Prayer deliberates the unlimited possibilities of an abundance mindset. Planning considers the path of a solution orientation.

Seventh.

Worry is unattractive. It repels. People aren’t drawn to fearful, worried and negative people. Prayer is inclusive. It embraces. Everyone is invited to pray and experience God’s power and presence in their circumstance. Planning is always best in collaborative community. It engages.

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Philippians 4:6-7 - Don't fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It's wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.