Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Sexual Morality (new perspective)

The battle over sexual morality is a battle that never ends in the lives of the majority of men. Achieving complete sexual morality (at least the sexual morality that Jesus teaches) seems about as likely as achieving complete peace in the Middle East. Now I know that there are far better men out there that are the exception to the norm and if you are one of these men then I don't intend to offend you. In fact, if you are a victor over sexual morality then please grant us the pleasure of sharing your battle strategies. That being said, let me get back to my soldiers who are still on the ground fighting right along side of me. I have recently come across CS Lewis' views on sexual morality and as usual he has opened up my eyes to a better understanding of this virtue. I could try and interpret his writings in my own words but then I would be cheating you tremendously so hear it is straight from the horse's mouth:


"Before we can be cured we must want to be cured."

 - This seems so obvious but this speaks true to so many people. It's easy to say the "right" words or pray the "right" prayer but to actual want and desire what is "right" is a different story. To make this a little more real, you can't ask to be cured and then continue to hold on to that porn collection or those swimsuit editions. If you are holding on to anything that can cause you to stumble then you are not truly wanting to be cured. 


"many people are deterred from seriously attempting Christian chastity because they think (before trying) that it is impossible."

 - The problem with this attitude is a confused perspective. Sexual morality may seem and actually be impossible for most of us but that doesn't mean we are to simply give in and lay down our arms. Continuing the good fight with persistence is what molds our character. If the battle was easy then we would learn nothing. 


"We may, indeed, be sure that perfect chastity will not be attained by any merely human efforts. You must ask for God's help. Even when you have done so, it may seem to you for a long time that no help, or less help than you need, is being given. Never mind. After each failure, ask forgiveness, pick yourself up, and try again. Very often what God first helps us towards is not the virtue itself but just this power of always trying again. For however important chastity (or courage, or truthfulness, or any other virtue) may be, this process trains us in habits of the soul which are more important still."  

 - Did this speak directly into your life? How many times have you gotten down on your knees and asked to be cured of your sexual immorality? Over and over again? Have you not wanted to ask God why He will not cure you? Have you ever considered that being completely cured is not what you actually need? God can and may grant you with victory over the sexual morality battle but He may first grant you with the power to try and try again. The process of admitting your failure, asking for forgiveness, picking yourself up, and trying again is what trains our soul. It teaches us to depend on God and reveals to us that we cannot trust ourselves. It also encourages us to not get down on ourselves even when we are at our worst because our failures are forgiven. What a wonderful, mighty, graceful God we serve!!


"The only fatal thing is to sit down content with anything less than perfection."

 - The constant pressing on towards perfection is the very thing that molds and transforms our hearts. Being perfect would teach us nothing (which is why sin entering the world was part of the original plan but that's for a different time). So be encouraged my fellow men that if you are in the battle at all then you are in the right place. It is those that choose not to put up a fight that are in real danger. 


That being said, I'm going to close with some more words from CS Lewis because I feel we put way too much emphasis (especially here in e-fellowship) on the topic of sexual morality. Perhaps we need to change our perspective and take sexual immorality off our prayer speed dial. Allow CS Lewis to take this message home:


"If anyone thinks that Christians regard unchastity as the supreme vice, he is quite wrong. The sins of the flesh are bad, but they are the least bad of all sins. All the worst pleasures are purely spiritual: the pleasure of putting other people in the wrong, of bossing and patronising and spoiling sport, and back-bitting, the pleasures of power, of hatred. For there are two things inside me, competing with the human self which I must try to become. They are the Animal self, and the Diabolical self. The Diabolical self is the worse of the two. That is why a cold, self-righteous prig who goes regularly to church may be far nearer to hell than a prostitute. But, of course, it is better to be neither." 


- TEvans & CS


 

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Back to the Archives

I recently found some home video footage at my parents' house that I did not know existed. I decided to use it as a humorous taunt on the blog all in good fun. However, due to recent ridicule I have decided to remove the home video and place it back into my parents' archive. My apologies to the parties offended and I will soften up my taunts in the near future. 

-TEvans

PS - I do, however, wish I had some footage of an Evans/Julianel battle.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Mr. DOUBTfire

Deuteronomy 28:66 "Your life shall hang in doubt before you; you shall fear day and night and have no assurance of life."
Matthew 14:31 "O you of little faith, why do you doubt?"
Matthew 21:21 "...if you have faith and do not doubt..."
Mark 11:23 "...and do not doubt in his heart..."

Real quick breakdown before the message; the Deuteronomy scrip is talking about consequences of disobedience, Matthew 14 is Jesus talking to his disciples, and Matt 21 and Mark 11 are from the same conversation where Jesus says that a human could literally cast a mountain into the sea if he really believed without doubt that it would happen. So, obviously most of this group has got over the initial hurdle of whether to believe in God and Jesus being who He said He was, so that is step one, give ourselves a pat on the back we have made the most important leap of faith. However we become hypocrits when we live in ways that lack faith and show doubt, whether it is stressing because we are late, don't have money to pay a bill, worried about job security, how we will be received by a group of friends if I act like too hardcore of Christian, etc... Those things show that we have doubt that God real, is actually in control, and that He really cares about every aspect of our lives. Those actions show that we are of "little faith". How big is your faith, how big is your doubt, what is bigger? How can a persons faith be healthy when it constantly gets trumped or choked by it's owners doubt? Writing this makes me hate myself, I'm in the crowd with my hand up agreeing (admitting my guilt) to everything that I'm rapping ,guilty, guilty, guilty. I'm tired of my doubt being larger than my faith this isn't right, God made us to be one-minded, bold, and strong warriors prepared to do battle with anyone. How can we do battle and be victorious when we can't even defeat our flesh one time before we even get out of the house. These scriptures show how powerful and important faith without doubt is, let's pursue that, I don't want to have little scrawny faith nuts anymore, I want a heavy satchel filled with brass, is anybody feeling this? Have the faith to know that God is doing a work and it is part of the greatest story ever told, play your part and anticipate greatness in abundance and see your world change, no longer will I listen to my flesh tell me I'm not worthy or I am weak, or I don't deserve good because of my sin. God loves us straight up, straight down and He loves to give so know that all your getting is part of the plan and you will be used for His glory so be prepared. We can't let the earth tell us what is important, sharing with a homeless guy can be better than hitting a dong in the league or catching a TD in the Rose Bowl. Replace your doubt with faith and watch. Remember; "You are a slave to who you obey", (flesh or Holy Spirit), who is your master? For clarity the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and God make up the trinity and for Christians they are all one (three in one=trinity). Blessings.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Rights

"Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code." Romans 7:4-6 ESV

Just a reminder that our flesh is dead, and we have taken in the Holy Spirit that controls our minds and bodies. Do you listen to the Holy thoughts that come in your mind? Help that person on the side of the road... Witness to the lady in the grocery store right now... Or does the flesh voice seem louder? That guy is probably a psycho, and drunk... How uncomfortable would talking to that stranger be, my witness sucks anyway.

Guys we don't have a say in the matter. We have died to what held us captive! We are commanded to serve the Holy Spirit that lives inside of all of us. Let's serve guys, push yourself and get the Word and witness to everyone. Get a little weird, it's okay. Watch the doors God will open to you when you take that step of faith. 

Have a Great Christmas guys! 

Blake


Friday, December 19, 2008

Does Being a Christian Make You Soft?

Parker commented on my post about the desire to be godly and it made me think of something that I have heard numerous times. Park gave an example of UFC fighters giving glory to God after their fights and the negative response that gets from alot of people.

Now that is not exactly my topic, but it made me think of it. I read the biography of Matt Hughes several months ago and thought it was a great read. In it he talks about his conversion to Christianity, which happened around 2004.

Since his conversion, he hasn't been the same Matt Hughes in the octagon. If you keep up, he has lost his last three fights. Some people would say that his Christianity has made him soft.

I know you have had coaches that believe that, as well as, teammates. What are your thoughts on this topic? Can you be a Christian and still be an elite athlete? I am talking top 5% percent in the history of your sport athlete.

I would love to hear some wisdom on this topic. In fact the coach at my former university is struggling with this very thing.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Desire to be Godly

"Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." 2 Timothy 3:12

Do we really think that we can embrace the values of this world and still desire to live a godly life? It can't happen, therefore, we will have many people around us who have embraced the world's values wholeheartedly that think we are nut-jobs because we don't embrace the same things. When that happens they will rag us, mock us, make fun of us, and sometimes be filled with hatred towards us. In some parts of the world they will kill you in cold blood.

Those of us in the E-Fellowship who are in the athletic arena be ready! You will be persecuted. You are a citizen of another kingdom, so you seem alien to those who are of this world. Stay strong, be watchful in prayer, as Paul says, and keep your eyes fixed on the King.

Building the Walls on Top of our Foundation

Nehemiah 6:15-16 "So the wall was completed on the twenty-fifth of the month Elul, in fifty-two days. And it came about when all of our enemies heard of it, and all the nations surrounding us saw it, they lost their confidence; for they recognized that this work had been accomplished wirth the help of our God."

After returning from exile in Persia (445 B.C.) one of Nehemiah's goals was to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem, his motivation was to be faithful to the law of God. Like so many leaders, Nehemiah had enemies and these enemies didn't want this wall to be rebuild because it would show patriotism and bring a growth of power to Jerusalem but more importantly to Nehemiah. So work on the wall became extremely tough and especially dangerous for Nehemiah and the other former exiles. Nehemiah showed great courage with his tireless work ethic and trust in the Lord for protection, his friends begged him to flee to protection (6:11) when there was a plot to kill him. Nehemiah's courage became contagious and it spread across the team and they gained momentum and finished this great task with the Lord's fuel. Notice the last part of v. 16; the non-believers lost their confidence because they recognized that the Lord was very real. Wow!
As you can see this is a meaty scoop of scripture, so much going on in it. Obedience to the law of God, hard work, infectious courage, loss of confidence by the other guys, and recognition of the Lord our God's power and realness. Mmmmm! Here's the rub (the polishing of this issue to make it pretty, ready for showing), what are we courageous about, are we being infectious in a positive way, are we working hard in our faith to find the truth and load ourselves up with wisdom (like my man Solomon), are we following the law to get to heaven or are we following the law to get a better understanding and deeper relationship with our Creator, or have we lost confidence in this whole thing? Reread that sentence and pray before you do, so God will reveal more of His will to us and provide where we lack, here I will set it up for us.
Heavenly Father, my fire dies out, I lose my courage to stand on the front line, I get selfish and forget about the power of my life as a witness for You, and I get lazy as Your student, forgive me and give me the strength and motivation/desire to live for You and seek the truth, help me to be all that You want me to be, I trust You to give me all that I need to be a vessel for Your kingdom, pour out blessings that are of Your perfect will on my life, I love You and praise You, Amen!
What are we courageous about, are we being infectious in a positive way, are we working hard in our faith to find the truth and load ourselves up with wisdom, are we following the law to get to heaven or are we following the law to get a better understanding and deeper relationship with our Creator, or have we lost confidence in this whole thing? Gut check!
Brothers, "challenge up", the challenge is there, take it and run, let us be courageous and be powerful influences for others around us, our lives are big tools of God's, know that and trust it, relight that fire and let this group be a spark to your "Christmas Yule Log". Be blessed knowing Jesus was who He said He was!
Jules

Monday, December 15, 2008

saturday night charity work

Whats up studs, Been a long week for me. I flew to PAO last week, but had to leave early so I could get back to start preparing for my charity golf tournament that benefits FCA. We had a banquet the night before the terny too. all in all we raised nearly 50,000 dollars for the cause. But, i can tell you this...when you have a celebrity golf tournament there is a lot that goes into it. First off, you have a buncha guys come in that are used to being kinda spoonfed, so they are hight maintenance. you have to have activities planned to keep everyone from getting bored...because if they are flying in from all over the country for you, you want to make sure they have a good time. you have to make sure their hotel accomodations are right and ready, transportation is taken care of, and be able to direct them to gyms and what not. Also, you have to collect prizes for the tournament, auction items for the banquet and attend planning meetings for the whole process. If its your name on the tournament you want to make sure that things are going to be smooth. i can guarantee you that my phone rang 1000 times during that week. I promise i'm telling you all this for a reason. For the banquet we had a man named Dr. Joe Stowell fly in to speak. Dr Stowell is the former head of the Moody Bible Institute and now is president of Cornerstone University in Michigan. He was speaking at PAO in 2002 when i bought into Christianity. The message he gave was about the gift of giving. He talked about how we could be gone at any minute and what we do with our resources now really matters because we may not have anything 10 minutes from now. he himself got into a massive car accident where he flipped the car several times...and admittedly, while upside down in the car, began asking himself if he had been gracious enough with his time and money.
Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord,and he will repay him for his deed.
Proverbs 19:17
So, in todays society, we are told that we are nearing a depression...please...there are countries that people survive on 1 dollar a day. Where people eat anything that crawls...you do not want to be a bug in cambodia. I know its easy for people with money to say give, spend, share...blah, blah, blah. but, what are we doing with our time and money? What and how much do we really need? During Dr Stowell message there were rich old business men standing up in the back of the room crying. I've had several buddies tell me how inspired they were by the whole event. and during this slow economy we actually came together and raised a lot of money. 28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Basically, dont worry be happy....everything is gunna be alright...everything is gunna be alright. lil mix of a few songs there
We're too blessed to be stressed studs
waino

Citizenship?

"But we are citizens oh heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior." Philippians 3:20 (NLT)

The scripture hit me hard this morning for two reasons: 1. How often do I forget that my name is in the book and I get to spend eternity with Jesus? 2. Am I "eagerly" waiting for his return?

No. I get caught up in so many things of this world and just get off track! I can't allow myself to focus on my job more than my relationship with Christ. That can't happen, but it does too often. We must set our minds on knowing Christ, not on the pursuits of this world. 

Be blessed guys, 

Blake

Sunday, December 14, 2008

interesting things on the blog info

jules' favorite movie is the mask of zorro....wow.....and terry looks just like ashton kutcher. that's all i got. and there are three adams so i made my name waino
waino
ps...blake i realized that you are a geek...well, that happened a while ago but the blog info summed that up totally. blake wants to be a street ballin gangsta so bad its funny

confused

theres a lot going on with this blog. my question is will we be able to read and respond to the posts as easy as with our email. i check my email everyday...i probably will not remember to check this blog everyday. just thinking that we had a good system with the emails and i cant even figure out how to read the posts from everyday. i also think that if we are trying to impact all the guys in this group email is a better system, since they will be checking that everyday too.
my opinion
adam

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Were You There?

This video is courtesy of Jules. Be sure and listen to the end, the pastor is CJ Mahaney, and I have his ministry, Sovereign Grace, as a link on our blog. He has had a huge impact on my life through his books and sermons, so check it out.



20 Books for your Twenties ...Again

Sorry, the post on 20 Books for your twenties didn't go to the site. This one should work. Just click on title.

Favorite Blogs and Websites

I have added 2 features that I think will be a huge benefit for all of us on this blog: a favorite blog list and favorite website list. I have added mine, so make sure and add some of yours. This site is to help us grow in our walk with God, so let's make it as beneficial as we can for those us, and for those who visit the site.

Friday, December 12, 2008

20 Books to Read in your Twenties

One of my favorite blogs is the Buzzard blog. Justin Buzzard is the twenty-something pastor at Central Peninsula Church in San Francisco. He just recently posted his top 20 books for twenty-somethings that I think will be beneficial for you guys. I have read many of the books and think it is a great list for us to choose from. Click on the title of post to check it out! Peace - Durham

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Leg Kick Gone Bad!

I don't know if you guys watched the UFC's Fight for the Troops night, but this injury in the preliminary fight that wasn't aired is the most brutal thing I have ever seen.



Lecrae Indwelling Sin (Mine Ministry)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

From the Vaults

Phil 1:21 "For me to live is Christ and to die is gain."I have been on a quest for truth ever since I was in grammar school, trying to figure out the real from the fake, usually involving methods that worked for or against me in sports. Since my acceptance of the free ticket into eternity to be with our awesome God, the Holy Spirit has been molding me and changing me into a man who looks more like Christ everyday. Far from perfect but improving as the search for truth continues. I had mentioned the idea of listening to the Spirit that is within us, here is a story that recently happened. The other day my teamate and I were driving to the closest bank so he could deposit a check, his navigation was guiding us. We were fellowshipping as this friend has recently rededicated his life to Christ and has caught fire, just being around him warms my Spirit. After 5 minutes on the interstate we both said "wow this is a long way, what a terrible navigation system." He then mentioned that there will be a reason that we are heading this way. I laughed but agreed, two minutes later we see an advertisement for the play "Jesus Christ Superstar", we thought that was it and laughed it off. Moments later he parks the car on the side of the road in downtown Hartford and I stay in it so I can move it if the metermaid comes. Moments later a man (dressed in all white scrubs) walks by and instantly I feel an urge to talk to this guy and a feeling (Holy Spirit) that is telling me to tell him that God loves him. I am like, yo, I don't even know this man he looks super suspect and it would be crazy to share with him. I fight it for a couple of minutes and the feeling won't go away. Finally a couple things lined up (found the keys, figured out how to turn off the ride, and ran out of excuses) and I got out of the car and approached this man. I said "this may seem strange but I'm a Christian and I have been trying to be obedient to the Holy Spirit that lives in my and it urged me to tell you that God loves you and He wants to use you in a special way." This guy backs up a couple steps and gathers himself and then laughs with an amazed look on his face. He then explains to me that he has been going through some things and that was exactly what he needed to hear. I told him how I had no reason to be in Hartford (finding the bank) and how I'm from California (pretty amazing if you think about it). We both tripped off that for a minute. He concluded that when he walked past that tree (pointing to the one next to the car I was in) he felt God tell him that everything was going to be okay. I was overwhelmed at how great our God is. This blew my mind. My buddy came running up a minute later and I asked if we could pray together. So Zach and I put hands on this guy and prayed for him, it was great. I hope that this story came out the way it played out in my life, it was truly and act of God and an absolute mind blower. God bless all of you who read this.
Ben "to die to myself is to gain entrance into the kingdom and have my name penned in the book of life."

Fellowship (2 are better than 1)

Ecclesiastes 4:9-11 "Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up. Again, if two lie down together, they will keep warm; but how can one be warm alone?"
I have to mention that this is King Solomon my favorite guy in the Bible once again spitting "hot bars" of wisdom.
Definition of fellowship - Fell'owship adj- a group of people with the same interests.
Who do you spend most of your time with (talking, on the phone, hanging out, working out, going to dinner, etc...)? Do they share the same interests as you? More importantly do they know where you stand in your faith and do they share your beliefs? Sure Jesus hung out with sinners, we know that but who did He spend most of His time with. Jesus spent most of His earthly time with men who believed in His Father and who believed in Him. Have you ever noticed that when you leave the church or the presence of other believers that you feel charged up and your fire burns brighter? "Sharp as a tack like I just left church" (one of B-Manfreds fav's) I absolutely feel that way and it is with that knowledge that I will get fellwoship from a brother when I'm down or struggling. I have proven to myself that I can't properly get back up by myself, the anger or pain lingers and somebody eventually gets knocked over (due to my brashness) because of it. During fellowship and repentance, Jesus washes me clean warming me with a comfortable feeling to talk out my issues with brothers like I'm in the "trust tree" or "nest". 1 Corinthians 15:33 "Do not be deceived; evil company corrupts good habits.", I know this to be true because sometimes I can't prevent myself from corrupting my good habits let alone being influenced by a Pagan (non-believer). The challenge is to surround ourselves with likeminded people for the next week or month and see what happens to your plight (state or condition). Make phone calls to e-Fellowshippers, meet someone new at church, talk to your pastor, or share your testimony with someone. This could prove to be life changing for some of us, so by into it because just as Jesus didn't half-way do anything so we shouldn't half-way do this.

Lord I pray that you would show Your mercy on us, You see our desire so we pray that You would open up our hearts and pour out on us Your blessings that will bring us peace and understanding to this group despite being in this fallen world. Put other frontline believers in our lives that can pick us up when we fall and remind us of the cross to dust us off when were dirty. Help us to turn from our old ways and put on the new man that is more like You. We love You and praise You Jesus, Amen.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

UFC Mega Fight!

Random subject, but for those MMA fans among us, who do you have in the upcoming Penn vs St. Pierre fight?

Paul's Humility aka Christ's Humility

When Paul wrote his letter to the Philippians, it was an extremely tuff time in his life. But would you know that by reading this book? No way. His pure heart and humility towards others and Christ is such an inspiring example of how we should all conducts ourselves. I'll give you a couple scriptures to meditate on today...

"Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly." Philippians 1:14

Would that be your perspective during your imprisonment? Look at how God always reveals blessings through adversity in our lives! I'm in chains, but my bro's at home are straight taking God's word to the streets!!! Praise God. 

"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves." Phil 2:3

In the book of John religious leaders asked Jesus what are the two most important commands in the Bible? 

"Love the Lord your god with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this 'Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these." Mark 12:29

Let's truly try to love on every single person through out our day. Walk into a room of people you don't know and just meditate on that scripture. It will instantly improve your mood and how you treat others. Have you ever seen that Godly glow in a pastors eye? I want that, and i will have it. 

I also don't want to finish without challenging all of you today...

Paul gave up everything- family, friendship, and freedom- in order to know Christ and his resurrection power. We too have access to this knowledge and this power, but we may have to make sacrifices to enjoy it fully. What are you willing to give up in order to know Christ? 

Authentic Encounter

Romans 10:9 "that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved."
The teenager had been to camp. The challenge of the lordship of Jesus Christ over all of life had been presented. At the close of the camp, an opportunity to let Christ run her life was given in a very simple but direct way. The young woman had given as much as she then knew of herself to as much as she then knew of Jesus Christ and was determined to trust Him to guide her in the midst of the ambiguities and complexities of living as a teenager in todays world.
"Well, what did you do at camp?" was the traditional question almost thoughtlessly asked by the girl's father at the dinner table after she returned home.
"I have decided to let Jesus Christ run my life!" was the direct answer followed closely by a gentle but powerful question: "Have you ever done that, Daddy?"
The father was angered and challenged. He passed it off, but could not get it off his mind. had he ever let Christ run his life, really? He had been a church officer, church-school teacher, community leader, and admired executive in his firm, but he had never experienced Christ's lordship over his life. That would mean praying about decisions, expenditures, investments! It would mean getting His help for relationships, plans, and programs! No, he had never done that. Christ was not very real.
His daughter's newly found joy in Christ forced him to realize that he was a religous man who needed Christ. Some time later he discovered the difference between knowing about Christ and actually knowing him as personal Savior and Lord.
It is never too late to move from religion to life.
Lloyd John Ogilvie

Friday, December 5, 2008

Thursday, December 4, 2008

People of the Book


Before I throw in my two cents, i want to thank Adam, Blake and Jules for helping me financially, so i could make the trip to the Dominican Republic. It was another great year and i was able to bring the head baseball coach at my former university, Northwestern State. Last night as we shared the trip with our church, Coach D broke down talking about how much this trip changed his life and how he wants to change the way he coaches his players.

That's all you guys and i can't thank you enough!

A little food for thought: as Christians, we are people of "the Book." Unfortunately, in our culture we are being hammered with the idea that for today's complex problems we need to find answers elsewhere. Biology, science, psychology, sociology....anywhere but the Bible!

Let's remember that the Bible is sufficient for all of life and godliness. It is the truth! As we wrestle with different issues, which we need to do, let's always look at the world through the lense of Scripture. The Bible is enough!

Here are a few quotes that i love about the Bible:

"I have thought I am a creature of a day, passing through life as an arrow through the air. I am a spirit come from God and returning to God; just hovering over the great gulf, till a few moments hence I am no more seen. I drop into an unchangeable eternity! I want to know one thing, the way to heaven - how to land safe on that happy shore. God himself has condescended to teach the way: for this very end he came from heaven. He hath written it down in a book. O give me that book! At any price give me the Book of God! I have it. Here is knowledge enough for me. Let me be a man of one book." - John Wesley

"It is blessed to eat into the very soul of the Bible until, at last, you come to talk in Scriptural language, and your spirit is flavored with the words of the Lord, so that your blood is Bibline and the very essence of the Bible flows from you." - 19th Century Baptist Preacher Charles Spurgeon

- Durham

How to post links

Just for your info, I added a link capability when you are wanting to put a link on your blog. For example, click on my last post title and it will take you to the link.

Legalism Article Link

http://spurgeon.wordpress.com/2008/12/03/what-is-legalism-2/

What is Legalism?

We here legalism thrown around all the time in Christian circles. "I don't have to go to church, that's legalism." "Read my Bible everyday.....legalism." "Don't cuss, don't drink, don't dance...legalism."

Check out this article from the Shepherds Scrapbook blog:

http://spurgeon.wordpress.com/2008/12/03/what-is-legalism-2/

- Durham

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Prop 8 (Gay and Lesbian debate)

Prop 8- was based on a law that a judge passed okaying gay marriage, the people voted and it came down to a close decision but the yes (meaning no on gay marriage) folk won and now half the state is as pissed as a tailless rattlesnake.
Leviticus 18:22 "You shall not lie with a male as with woman. It is an abomination."
Leviticus 20:13 "If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death their blood shall be upon them."
Romans "1:27 "Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due."
Okay, so now we know what the scripture says but have you ever talked to a homosexual before? They can be just as normal as us but they are attracted to the same sex. I used to hate gays and lesbians because everyone else did but now I have actually got to know a few and they are humans too. My faith tells me that they make a choice to be that way but why? A homosexual gets black-balled and catches so much scrutiny for that decision why would they do that, it's crazy. The point of this email is to hear some opinions because I'm sure somebody has heard something groundbreaking on this subject. I know for certain that we have to love them the same as everyone else no matter how difficult. Sin is sin; right? Their sin is no different than the lies you have kept in your closet for years. Let's remember to say how we feel but be respectful of eachothers feelings, don't jump to anger when someone writes something contrary to your beliefs we're all trying to work this out and get to the truth.
P.S. My mother (best mom ever) married a man who turned out to be gay before she met my dad and my fathers sister (my aunt) is lesbian. I don't really know my aunt but my mothers ex-husband is very nice.
Ben

Monday, December 1, 2008

Nature

"And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God." Romans 6:12

When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, our old nature dies. But why are your old ways still causing you to stumble. It very simple, and you have to ask yourself this question...

If your old nature is dead? Why do you spend so much time with it? Think of it two ways, everyday your feeding yourself. It's your choice what you eat, and whatever you feed will grow. Why is it as Christians do we always feel like we are following all these guidelines and rules? When facing temptation why should you have to ask yourself the question 
"is this wrong or right?" You need to FULLY SUBMIT yourself to God first and then there won't be any question. You know the answer! You can't have one foot in the pool and one out. The key word here is SUBMISSION. Your entire life, everything! 

When you fully submit, you become a weapon for God. I don't know about you but I want to be the best most deadliest weapon on the battle field. The problem is Satan is looking for guns to fire as well... It's our choice. God is waiting for full submission, and I'm ready to enroll. 

Blake