When I was a little kid in elementary school I thought it would be funny to play a prank on the teacher. I decided to put sticky tape on the her chair so that it would stick to her bottom. Influenced by my friends, I boldly crawled out of my desk and snuck across the floor while the teacher was writing on the board. I strategically placed the tape on her chair and crawled back to my desk before she turned around. It was a bold thing to do. She could have turned at any moment and caught me crawling across the floor. If I had been caught… Read more
For the past two weeks my life has felt like some type of survival centered television show. My wife has been out of town and she left me alone with our two daughters to fend for ourselves. We have survived, but only through love and support for one another, and the blessing of frozen food.
Our oldest daughter, Lily, is twelve and is an invaluable help with her three-year-old sister. Lily has really stepped up in her role as the oldest female in the house this week. She does things a Dad just can’t do (at least not this one), like comb and style her sister’s long silky Rapunzel hair.
Last Wednesday night I was particularly busy getting ready for evening church service. Some friends offered to pick my girls up and bring them to church while I stayed and got some work done, I gladly accepted. I asked my oldest to make sure to fix her sister’s hair before church (otherwise reports might get back to my wife that things were going awry at home), which she did, but by the time she got to church, you couldn’t tell the hair had ever been brushed.
You see, our friends have a convertible and they all thought it would be fun to ride with the top down, which wreaked havoc on the newly brushed hair. When I finally saw them at church that night, the first thing out of Lily’s mouth was “I fixed her hair I promise!” Read more
Lately my wife and I have been teaching our 3-year-old daughter about praying. So every once and a while before school, or before a meal, we will ask her if she will pray. She says the cutest little prayers. She prays things like, “Tank you for my mommy, tank you for my daddy, tank you for my toys…”
Lately, she isn’t quite sure what to pray for. She will start out with her standard prayer, then she will pause, look up at us and ask. “Ummmm…what else can I say?”
At our church we take communion every Sunday. We believe it is a crucial part of our worship experience. We believe that at the moment when we take the cup and the bread, we are truly communing with God.
But what does that mean? What does it mean to commune? If you stopped someone this Sunday after church and asked, I’m not sure anyone could give you a good answer. We take our little piece of cracker, and our little cup of juice, we bow our heads and….
When I was in high school, long before Toby Mac sang solo, there was a popular Christian band called DC Talk. Their number one selling album was titled Jesus Freak and featured a song called “What if I Stumble.” At the very beginning of that track was a quote that I have never forgotten. It says: “The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today are Christians. People who acknowledge Jesus with their lips, but walk out the door with a non-brother lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.”
I can’t tell you how many times I have preached that message, basically raking believers over the coals for their behavior. It reminds me of something Jesus said about the teachers of the law: “They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.” (Matthew 23:4).
Some time ago there was this tv commercial of a guy surfing the internet. It depicted him flying through hundreds of different websites with this look of extreme boredom on his face. It didn’t matter what he clicked on, it didn’t matter what he saw, nothing the internet had to offer could perk his interest. Until finally he reaches the end, and a page pops up that says: “Alert: You have reached the end of the internet. You have seen everything there is to see. Please go back now.”
That is how I used to feel about the Bible. I used to think I knew everything there was to know, which I realize is pretty arrogant, so let me explain. It wasn’t that I knew everything, it was this feeling like I had heard or seen every take and explanation there was for any given piece of scripture. Almost like this stagnant knowledge of God and his Word. No matter what I read, no matter who I listened too, it didn’t seem like there wasn’t anything fresh or new to be learned.