Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Wife's Encouragement

In the movie Rocky II, boxer Rocky Balboa is scheduled to fight a rematch against world champion Apollo Creed. But Rocky's wife Adrian had a difficult delivery that caused her to go into a coma. As a result, Rocky lost his desire to train for the fight. He spent his time crying, reading to Adrian, and praying. He wouldn't even look at or hold his newborn son until Adrian woke up from the coma.

When she finally did awaken, Rocky was by her side. Shortly thereafter, a nurse brought in the newborn baby for Adrian to hold. Rocky told her that he didn't have to fight Apollo Creed--that they would make money some other way. But Adrian knew Rocky's heart. Rocky was a boxer, and one little word would make all the difference in the world.

The video below is for every man who has a wife like mine: a true friend who encourages you and inspires you to be the champion God created you to be.



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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Does Love Really Make a Difference?

According to a recent online story, atheist Patrick Greene had some bad experiences with Christians: "The so-called Christians that Greene had encountered had refused to pay their fare in his cab because they did not want their money going to the 'devil.' They had also refused to lease him apartments because of his disbelief in God.... 'No Christian at all that we've ever met in our lives, had ever been nice to us,' Greene said. 'No Christian has ever done anything for us. Our own families have totally forgotten our existence.'"

But, as Paul Harvey might say, click here for the rest of the story.

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Let Not Many of You Become Teachers

Teaching the Word of God is a powerful responsibility. It is incumbent upon those called to this task to take seriously Paul's exhortation to Timothy in 2 Tim. 2:15: "Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth."

The astute listener can discern when a pastor-teacher has put in the hard work of Bible observation, interpretation, and application. In recent weeks, I have had the pleasure of listening to Pastor Andy Jobe of Riverview Baptist Church in Bixby, OK continue his excellent series through the Gospel of Luke. His sermons display both biblical depth and authentic humility, both of which are characteristics needed in the man of God.

Churches would be served greatly if more pastors took 2 Tim. 2:15 seriously. Those who don't tend to rely on gimmicks and crowd manipulation, wrongly equating a peer-pressure response to the inner working of God's Spirit. When untrained and ill-equipped "shepherds" try to feed the flock, everyone begins to starve.

It's not easy to preach through the Song of Solomon on Sunday mornings -- to address God's people after the terrorist attacks of 9-11 -- to preach a sermon on abortion that properly balances truth and grace -- or to teach how Rom. 11:32 summarizes the entire structure of the theological/historical section of the Book of Romans and explain why that should matter to anyone who came to church just because their marriage is falling apart. But this is the task of the true pastor-teacher: to fulfill 2 Tim. 2:15.

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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Quote on Finding Real Love

"What we all want most is to feel loved unconditionally. But how can you feel loved by me unless you first feel accepted by me? Loving is a more active version of accepting. And how can you feel accepted by me unless you first feel like I see who you really are? And how can I see who you really are unless you tell me the truth about yourself? When you tell me the truth about yourself--especially about your mistakes and flaws--you create opportunities for me to see you, accept you, and love you unconditionally. And that can change your whole world." - Greg Baer of RealLove.com



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Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Quote on Relationships

"'How can I keep our relationship together?' is the wrong question. That sets a goal that involves another person's behavior. What if that person doesn't want a better relationship with you? Then, if you persist in trying to improve your relationship, you are trying to control that person. And that is not good, even if you're married. Set goals that involve only yourself, not the feelings or behavior of other people. The question should be, 'How can I be more loving in this relationship?' If you want spectacular relationships, always look for how you can be more loving. When just one person begins to bring real love into the mix, miracles happen." - Greg Baer of RealLove.com

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