While there is definitely a lot of bad stuff on the internet, there is also some really good and thought-provoking material. Today I ran across three interesting posts that stretched my thinking.
1. Brian Jones wrote about Church Hopping and Shopping
2. Justin Davis wrote about the Lies of Pornography
3. The People of the Second Chance talked about Dan Marino’s Failures
Lots of good stuff – Be sure and read some of it.
I enjoyed this blog post by Carlos Whittaker over at Ragamuffin Soul for fathers and parents
5 tips from a messed up dad
Every year is full of ways to mark you life. We start with New Years Day and then we have a birthday and finally for many of us we have some sort of anniversary. These are simple ways that we remind ourselves that another year has passed. These markers serve us in two ways.
First, they give us an opportunity to reflect on the past year. It always amazes me how much has happened in just 12 months. For me in just the past year alone; my dad survived a heart attack, my son started high school and played varsity sports, I had to start wearing bi-focals and a couple friends had babies. I am reflecting just thinking about it.
Second, these markers give us an opportunity to make plans and dreams for the next year. It also amazes me how much I can accomplish in just 12 months if put my mind to it. For me, I want to develop this blog further and get back to writing on a regular basis. I want to share the gospel with at least 6 people this year. I want to read through the Bible again. I could go on and on.
Today is a marker day for me and I am reflecting on life. Last years successes are behind me now … and so are my failures. Today and this next year is full of potential. Lord, guide me and forgive me and let me be grateful for another year.
If you believe in Second Chances through Jesus then you will like this website.
People of the Second Chance
They have lots of info and a great Blog. Today is “Second Chance Monday”
Jonah 3:1 Then the word of the Lord came to Jonah a second time (NIV)
Proverbs 24:16 for though a righteous man falls seven times, he rises again, but the wicked are brought down by calamity. (NIV)
Luke 6:35 (b) Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. (NIV)
Luke 15:1-2 Now the tax collectors and “sinners” were all gathering around to hear him. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” (NIV)
I make my living as a preacher. Every week I have the opportunity to speak in a public setting for God and the people. It is a job I take very seriously. I spend hours in study and prayer, thinking through every angle and attack of my arguments. I plan and prepare until the moment of delivery arrives.
With all that said, I openly admit to the numerous mistakes I have made. I once said that John Wesley preached a sermon in which a man confronted him after the sermon. Following that I meant to say, “he was a general who had seen war in the world.” What I said instead was, “he was a general who had seen World War 2.” After the words came out of my mouth I knew I was wrong. Actually I was over a hundred years off. Another time, I was talking about the Ephesians who worshipped “the Goddess Diana.” What I said was really that they worshipped “the princess Diana.” I was a couple thousand years off this time. One time I referred to the tax document at the end of the year as your WD-40. I could go on and on. I never say things that are huge violations in the doctrines of scripture, but sometimes people in illustrations end up a thousand years out-of-place and filing oil instead of tax documents.
All that is to simply declare that I am human. I make mistakes. Not only in my life but even in my speaking. But this is what gets me. Never do people in movies or on TV make mistakes. Never. All their words are polished and their actions graceful, unless of course for comedic purposes. DVD’s that offer outtakes fascinate me. Many of them were funnier than the movie. But why don’t they include those? Every life in every place has some mistakes, blunders, missteps and slips of the tongue. Yet they take the privilege of editing those out. I don’t get that privilege.
What if all of life was like that? We had the ability to edit out everything we didn’t like. Would that make life more interesting or more boring? I believe part of the joy in life is the mistakes! One of the greatest signs of the grace of God in our lives is our ability to laugh at the blunders.
I found this on another blog a couple of years ago. I thought it was good stuff.
I love what J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, said in a speech given at Harvard. It resonates so strongly with why we believe in being “People of the Second Chance.”
In recalling her days when she was a divorced, single Mom, almost homeless, and feeling like a total failure she says:
“So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me.
Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had already been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.”
This is a quote from a former professor of mine who now preaches at a Church in Arizona. His name is Mark Moore and this originally appeared on his blog and I thought it was very well said:
At a recent mens retreat I had the privilege of being sharpened by a number of fellas who had true brokenness in their lives: Unfaithful wives, sexual addictions, violence in the home, anger management issues, failing parents, failed ministries. One old friend emailed me just to say thanks for the time we got to share together after years of lost contact. My final sentence to him was this: “From one wounded warrior to another: stand in the grace we have come to cling to, no longer out of theological commitment, but raw necessity.” Look, I’m not OK and neither are you. We serve our king, not because we have earned the right, not because we have lived right, not because it is right, but because we have expended all our other resources and run out of options. As Peter said, “To whom shall we go, you have the words of eternal life.” Lord, all we can offer you is broken lives and wounded hearts, inflamed with the passion of one indiscriminately loved.
I used to be an avid Blogger. When I left my ministry in Iowa over 4 years ago I simply stopped as my life went through different transitions. As with much of life, time gets away from you and what was going to be a short break ended up a long break. Well, I am back now and hope to be blogging 4 or 5 days a week. Thanks for joining me on this journey… again.