Monday, December 24, 2012

Like a proud dad

Yesterday was by far my most favorite day in the history of Hub City Church. 

Why, you might ask?

Come on January 6 to find out. 

I have never been more proud to be a part of Hub City. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Prayer List

I came across a list of suggestions that you can use to guide your prayers in light of last Friday's tragedy in Connecticut. 

The Christian Post has issued a prayer list for those wanting to pray specifically for the needs of those affected by the Sandy Hook school shooting last week.
  1. Pray for emotional healing for the families and friends of the people killed in this massacre.
  2. Pray for the victims familes to get the emotional, spiritual and financial support they will need to rebuild their lives.
  3. Pray for school officials as they appoint a new principal and possibly other school personnel.
  4. Pray that the missing persons will be found safe.
  5. Pray that no one will imitate Lanza's actions and attempt copycat killings.
  6. Pray for people with mental illness to be healed or to be able to cope with their illness and find the help they need.
I would add a few others:
  • Pray that many will turn to Jesus during this tragic time. Jesus is our only hope.
  • Pray for the church's as the minister and reach out to those who are hurting. Pray that they will make much of Jesus.

Taking notes

I've got to brag on Nathan, my now 12 year old son. 

Each week I tell my boys to take notes on the sermon. It's a great habit to develop and, as Mark Batterson says, The shortest pencil is longer than then longest memory.

Nathan's all into technology stuff, so yesterday he decided to take notes on his iPod. Here are his notes from my sermon. I was impressed with his detail and punctuation.

Luke 1 
Luke was a docter and he interveiwed mary.
God sent the angel gabriel 
To nazereth.
Gabe talks to mary
She was pledged to be married with Joseph.
She was 13-16
Gabe says... The lord is with u. She was troubled and wondered what was going on. The angel says do not be afraid u have found favor with God. U will give birth to a son. (She was not excited because she was not married. Getting pregnate outside of marraige was bad in Jewish culture. That was adultury and that was punishable by death.) She was to give him the name Jesus. He will be great and the he will rule over beside God. His kingdom will never end. How will this be she asked i am a virgin. The angel say you will give birth to the son of God. Mary's cousin elizebeth was also pregnant. For nothing is impossible with God! With God! Luke 1:37
(God plus nothing equals everything.) I am the lords servant may it be to me as u have said. Then the angel left her. 
Are you doing life with or without God?

Friday, December 14, 2012

The Manhood Challenge

Nathan turned 12 yesterday. I can't believe he's 12. I really can't believe he's one year away from being a teenager. Crazy.

We celebrated with his favorite dinner, German-chocolate cake and presents. But I had a special gift for Nathan. It's called the Manhood Challenge. 

This is something I've been thinking about for about 5 years, ever since I read about Mark Batterson doing something like this. Basically, the Manhood Challenge is a year-long commitment of intentional discipleship between Nathan and me. I'll give the same gift to Matthew and Levi when they turn 12 too. I wanted to share it with you because I want you do intentionally disciple your kids. 

12/13/2012 Nathan, Happy Birthday! I am so proud of the man that you are becoming. I can remember the day you were born. It changed my life. And come to think of it, it changed yours as well. You are a great kid. But your time as a kid is almost up… even though you’ll always be my kid. As you know so well, in one year you will turn 13. This coming year is a big one for you. You are transforming from a child into a young man. So with that in mind I have something I want us to do together this year. I call it the Manhood Challenge. The Manhood Challenge has three parts:
  • A physical challenge.
  • An intellectual challenge.
  • A spiritual challenge.
Let me explain each one. First, there’s a physical challenge. It is so important that you learn to take care of your body. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 6 that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit. We need to be good stewards of our physical bodies. So here’s what I want us to do together this year. I want us to do some physical challenge together. This could be running a 5K, doing a difficult hike, participating in a mud-run, or some other physical feat.
 Second, is the intellectual challenge. It is essential that you learn to develop your mind. You are doing that in school, but it’s more important that you learn to develop your mind on your own. Jesus says that we are to love God with all of your mind. Part of doing that is growing our intellect. This challenge will involve you and I reading 4-6 books together this year. They will challenge both of us. I have some books picked out, but I want your input as well. Here are the books I want us to read:
  • In a pit with a lion on a snowy day – Mark Batterson
  • The Screwtape letters – C.S. Lewis
  • More than a carpenter – Josh McDowell
  • Draw the Circle – Mark Batterson
 Finally is the spiritual challenge. More than anything else I want you to develop a healthy and growing relationship with Jesus. This is the foundation of everything in life. The best way to do this is to spend time in God’s Word. The best habit you could ever develop is the habit of reading your Bible on a daily basis. Here’s what we’re going to do: Basically, you and I are going to go through the story of the Bible this year. We’ll memorize some important scriptures along the way. You’ll be getting a gift at Christmas to help facilitate this challenge for both of us. I love you. I love who you are becoming. And I know that God has something he wants you to do with your life. He has big plans for you. I can’t wait to take this Manhood Challenge journey with you over this year. Accomplishing these feats is going to be a challenge. It’s going to take hard work and sacrifice and discipline for both of us. But I am so excited about working through these challenges together with you. I love you. I am proud that you are my son. Love, Dad Manhood Challenge Commitment I, ___________________________, commit to join with my dad to take up the Manhood Challenge. Signed ___________________________________  Date _______________ Printed name __________________________________________________ Dad’s signature _________________________________________________

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Thinking of you

Be honest, how often do you think of others before yourself? If "0" is "never" and "10" is "all the time," where would you rate yourself?

I think most of us would rate ourselves around a 7 or 8. But in reality I think we're more like a 2 or 3.

This shouldn't surprise us. We are inherently selfish. We come out of our mommas that way. 

Paul knew this. That's why he wrote: Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. (Philippians 2:3-4).

We're blind to our selfishness. That means we need to be intentional about thinking of others first.

But this is so hard to do. It means we have to retrain ourselves. And there's no better time to start than now.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Prayer-walking Morgan Square

I know this idea is late, but better late than never.

We've got two more Movies at the Rink. Our next one is December 22. The final one is January 5. 

Here's my idea: I think we should prayer-walk Morgan Square in anticipation of what God might do. 

So who's with me? Pick a time and prayer-walk Morgan Square. Circle the square in prayer. 

Don't know what to pray? Ask God to tell you what to pray. You'll be surprised what he brings to mind.

Mark Batterson says, If you pray regularly, irregular things will happen on a regular basis. That's what I want.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Best graphic ever

I need to give props to Frankie Creel for the graphic for Hub City's upcoming series, A Christmas Story. It may be his best creation so far.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Bold as Love

Once and a while you come across a book that resonates deep within your soul. Bold as Love is one of those books for me.

I've been a fan of Bob Robert's books for a while, but his latest is by far my favorite. The main reason I love it, and you should read it, is that it's focus is on relationships. Specifically he challenges those of us who are Christians to build relationships with Muslims. There is power in relationship. 

Another reason this is a great book to read is that it is so readable. It's not too long. The stories are fantastic. It's one of those books that you'll like to read even if you don't like to read. Actually, I was sad when the book was over. I wanted more. I rarely say that about books.

One final thing made this book worth my time (and hopefully yours when you get it and read it). It wasn't what I was expecting at all. I had no idea which direction he was taking the book. It wasn't the usual Christian content. He challenges Jesus' disciples to do something that is profound, radical and controversial in our current evangelical climate.

I could tell you more, but I would rather you just read the book. You won't regret it.