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“[A preacher’s message] is not to rely on theatrics. It is not to rely on technique. It is to rely on God the Holy Spirit Himself to sovereignly work within the hearts of those who sit under his message. [A preachers] duty is to bring the word of the cross to the listeners, and by the power of God and the holy spirit, to come upon his listeners and to bring upon the result…[But] Exposition has given way to entertainment. Theology has been replaced theatrics. Doctrine has been yielded to drama. Profundity has been overcome by popularity. And men are more intent on filling the building than filling pulpit.” -Steve Lawson

Amen, Brother Lawson! Did you catch that? Read it again…

Many churches today have adopted a consumer mentality. No longer is the main intent to make clear the Good news of the cross. Instead, Churches are attempting to fill their pews, and appeal to the ears of their listeners by watering down the message of Jesus Christ in order to make the “sermon” more relevant to the culture rather than the hearts of man. No longer does the sound of ruffling pages fill the sanctuary of a bible believing church, ready to explore the goodness of God’s word. Instead, members of the congregation file into their seats waiting for the show to begin. At the end of the service file out, murmuring to another that the worship was a little off, or where they want to eat lunch, carrying a false sense of satisfaction that they received their spiritual brownie points by attending what we now call the church.

 Am I going too far by saying this? Let’s take a look at what’s going on in the world… shall we?

Pastor Rob Seagers has been basing his sermons on movie blockbusters and dressing up as their characters. This summer he has performed his message by dressing up as The Hulk, Batman, The Joker, Indiana Jones, and others. To make his sermons more relevant “he sees the movie, then prays about how to extract a biblical message.” For example, Mama Mia, about a bride to be searching for her father, resulted in the sermon “Who’s Your Daddy?” –finding one’s spiritual father. (Information found at Washingtonpost.com)

The Oaks fellowship Church recently had a series entitled: “Theolggins for your Noggins.”
 Their website states: “Lessons are most often learned when our imagination is engaged. Probably no one understood this better or had a more profound effect on generations of children than Dr. Seuss. Many of the more than 40 books he wrote have incredibly deep spiritual parallels. In this series we will rediscover four classic Dr. Seuss stories and learn the practical Biblical truths found in them.” ( http://www.theoaksfellowship.org )

 A Bible study series has been created from the popular sitcom “The Office.” The lessons pertain to how to make the most of your career, addressing issues such as dealing with incompetent bosses or co-workers.

It breaks my heart! What about the bible? The word of God, breathed by God, written to convict and delight the hearts of man! If we teach from the world, how will we ever truly find God?
Its possible for a person to live their life in church, and eternity in hell.

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I was with a group of friends on a day when the whole crew was worn out and sleep deprived. Except for one girl who was bubbling over with the grand idea of a shopping escapade. She had been hinting about it all week, but now that time was running out- she was very forthright:
“Do you want to go shopping? There is a store that I know you would love.”
What she was actually saying was “I’m going shopping, and it would be less work for me to drag you along if you just wanted to go too.”
I think that’s how we are with God.
“God, I want this… let me show you why it’s in your best interest too.”

I’ve often avoided being that person. “God if you’ll just get me this… I promise that I won’t <insert area of weakness> anymore.” Because I’ve found that I am most satisfied in my relationship with Christ when I’ve willfully submitted myself under His Lordship. With the Lord as my shepherd I have not wanted, he has made me lay down in green pastures, he has led me beside still water, he continually restores my soul. When the weight of His blessing has exceeded my ability to thank him- why should I ask for more?
Because of this I have trusted in Gods sovereignty almost to a fault… and by fault I’m mean Calvinism (small joke).
But a few nights ago, I was in a worship service and I began to pray for everything that I felt lead to pray for. I prayed for my family, friends that were lost, things that were going on my life… and soon I began to pray for something I wanted. I didn’t need it. In fact, I considered it as more as a distraction and tucked the thought away. But as I prayed, my desire crept up and overflowed into my petition before God.

This was very unlike me.
I’m not one to deprive myself of the blessings of God, because my cup runneth over. Normally, the only time I pray for myself is when I’m late and I don’t want to run into traffic or cops. I know- I’m religious.

But I’ve caught myself praying for this ever since then.

And I’m caught between Psalm 37:4 and Luke 22:42.

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD
       and he will give you
the desires of your heart.

 

Luke 22:42 “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

 

I’m trying to keep the blog post short- My conclusion when I return with my next post. Get ready for theology!!!

Until then- enjoy this unrelated video that I LOVE!

  

<3Kay

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Now its Easter… Go love your family and read you bible!!
<3Kay.

Isaiah 53:5

But he was pierced for our transgressions,
       he was crushed for our iniquities;
       the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
       and by his wounds we are healed.

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There are times in my life where I find a song that probes the very beat of my heart.

For the time being, this is the song within my soul:

There’s a cry in my heart
For Your glory to fall
For Your presence to fill up my senses
There’s a yearning again
A thirst for discipline
A hunger for things that are deeper

Could You take me beyond?
Could You carry me through?
If I open my heart?
Could I go there with You?
(For I’ve been here before
But I know there’s still more
Oh, Lord, I need to know You)

For what do I have
If I don’t have You, Jesus?
What in this life
Could mean any more?
You are my rock
You are my glory
You are the lifter
Of my head
Lifter of this head

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It seems that in Christian culture there are more doctrines than denominations, and the denominations outweigh the people to fill them.
This is troubling to me.
Who is right? Who is mistaking  honest obedience with blatant sin?
“Whos cheatin who? Whos staying true? Who dont even care any more?”

My Sister is 15, and though we both have an intimate relationship with our mother, we both view her very differently.
My sister is characterized by this: She gets caught up with the petty dramas of this world, she’s often cold and not relational, she finds confidence and self worth in her peers, and she’s more concerned about whats cool than whats right, she loves to argue, detached in revealing her thoughts and feelings.
I, on the other hand: am extremely relational, my love language is tough, I seek after righteousness, get in trouble very little, i need to know that my parents are proud of me, i share my thought processes and seek guidance, ect.

I see my mother as more of a companion, while my sister sees her as more of the care giver, and disciplinary.
That is simply because we are at different stages in life. If we were both asked to  describe the same woman, we would describe her very differently. Would all the things be true? Yes
While my sister may say she is very strict. I would argue that she is lenient. Both of these are true.

So what about God? God is a God of complete sovereignty as we orchestrates the story of humanity for His glory and pleasure. God also allows us to have responsibility, to either fulfill or deny.
I fully believe that these juxtaposed ideas can coexsist. Like parallel lines that go on together, and never meet a point of conclusion- Gods power, and Gods allowance cannot satisfy one another, but are both vital to the Christian beliefs.
I believe that though many doctrines do not compliment one another in emphasis, they do depict a small aspect of Gods vast and round character.

We earth dwellers will never witness the other side of the moon as long as we live on the earth, but we cant agrue that it doesnt exsist. You may never witness an aspect of God, but you cannot argue that it doesn’t exist.
I myself feel that i have only acutely witnessed the wrath of God, if at all. But God is a God of wrath.
Those who don’t believe in God, have never excepted Gods kindness. But God is a God of great Kindness in love.

Doctrine is necessary. But not essential. The blood of Christ is essential.
So speak truth in love. Let iron sharpen iron. Allow your concept of God widen as the spirit reveals truth and Gods word confirms it. Know God.
But above everything else- trust in the redemptive work that took place on the cross, because beyond that, all doctrines fail.

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Oh God! What are the plans you have for me?
The plans for a future and a hope?
Because I look into the days to come
All i see is weary feet
A heavy heart.
Will you carry me?
Oh God, What do you have instore for me?
You have created me, You call me your masterpeice
Where is the good work that you have created me for?

“Many are the plans in a mans heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that provails.” Proverbs 19:21

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