I can’t comprehend why we’re not all friends at church, but some people are more concerned about clambering up — what in their mind — the dogpile. They think they have to step on others.
Not me. I just want to enjoy friendship. And I wish everybody were a friend.
This side of eternity, friendship is the greatest thing. It is one of the loves (marital and family is another). Friendship occurs when you appreciate each other and share meaningful moments (they can be goofiness or enjoying watching a sport together or working together in a common cause).
The king of the dogpile is the ultimate loser for me. He thinks he’s got everybody’s respect. Maybe what he has is everybody’s fear. I’m afraid of him. Perfect love casts out all fear. I’m far from perfect yet.
I’m a sucker for love. Namely, I like to feel loved, and I give myself whole-heartedly to others. I don’t belong to the insulting clique, where men call each other “fool” and are constantly trying to one-up the joking derision. I guess I’m not man enough for them.
I’m leaving Guatemala right now, and I’m asking myself why I feel so full. God moved. There were salvations. But I’m even happier about just being with all those kids in the school, with my friends — the co-workers in the Lord — who helped found the church and school and keep them going. They don’t work for money. They work for something else. Smiling playing kids are everyone. Smiling adults too.
I can’t resist it. It’s like Heaven on Earth.
Wherever I go in God, this is the type of Christianity I’m trying to establish. You can fly on your superiority trip. I’m going to do my best to embody the love that is the image of Christ.
I founded the Door Christian Church 22 years ago and the Liceo Bilingüe La Puerta a year later. Now, God has sent me to Van Nuys in the San Fernando Valley to establish a church. Love will prevail.
Posted in Christian education, Christian school, church, Guatemala
Tagged Bible, church bretheren, church life, colegio cristiano guatemala, congregation, Faith, fellowship, interpersonal relations in church, Jesus, Liceo Bilingue La Puerta, love
Don’t miss the ship.
Posted in Christianity, church, Jesus
Tagged Bible, discipleship, Faith, fellowship, God, inspiration, random, ships, thoughts, worship
Don’t put too much “I” in Sunday — else it become SInday. Keep the “U” in Sunday.
Afterall, Sunday is about others. Put God and others first on Sunday.
Posted in Christianity, church, Sunday
Tagged discipleship, Faith, fellowship, God, inspiration, Jesus, prayer, thoughts, worship
Argentina and Brazil hate each other. For decades, Argentina was the upper society of South America, and Brazil the vulgar poor neighbor to the north. They were both dominant in soccer, so the rivalry became intense.
Messi is from Argentina, and Neymar is from Brazil. On other teams, rivals have famously sunk their teams (Lampard and Gerrard on England, for example). But these two stars for Barcelona have set aside any differences and become friends. The results were magical: a triple crown of titles this season — Spanish League, King’s Cup and now the Champion’s League, the competition second in prestige only to the World Cup.
When you decide to set aside your differences and work together with people in your church, the results will be (maybe “magical” is not the right word) supernatural!
When they learned that 45 of their own were among the missing of the downed Indonesia AirAsia flight 8501, members of the Rose of Sharon Church of Surabaya, Indonesia, sprang into action.
They sent assistant pastors to console the grieving. They set up a care center of prayer and worship with food and beverages while family members awaited news of the fate of their loved ones. Trained counselors were on standby by shifts around the clock in the airport and in homes.
“When I witnessed how one bereaved family encouraged and prayed for another out of their initiative, I could say that I almost saw heaven in that situation,” Pastor Philip Mantofa, who pastors the 45,000 member church, told CharismaNews. “Particularly when the bodies of the their family members were found and they had to identify them, we couldn’t leave them to face these horrific situations alone.” Read the rest of the story.
Posted in Christianity
Tagged 45 Christians, AirAsia crash, fellowship, Heaven, Indonesia, Java Sea, Jesus, prayer, Rose of Sharon church, Surabaya, tragedy
I don’t know why I have to be different than I am. People want me to be a tough guy. I am not a tough guy. I have never been a tough guy. God made me a sensitive type. If you don’t like it, too bad. I’m not changing for you.
Sometimes churches can try to make you fit their mold. We would lose our diversity if everybody liked football. God made us all different for a reason. If we were all football fans, how would the soccer fans get saved.
When God gave you unique fingerprints, unique DNA and a unique personality, it was to bless His church. Be yourself!
You can’t just wall humans out of your life. It is unhealthy. It should amaze you what love and acceptance to bring to your heart. It will bless your mental and even physical health.
Photo: David Tomek
The bench beckons, moss-grown with lack of use. We weary ourselves with ambition. We are missing out on each other. Can we sit and talk? My faith will be strengthened, maybe your too. Coffee was meant to be shared. Sadly at the coffee shop, the majority are alone, on their phones.
Actually, fellowship is an important but neglected pillar to the Christian faith. We think it’s optional, that we can do without easy enough. Not so in the early church.
I used to dismiss the notion of powerlessness. I had heard it in terms of sociologists who described people trapped by poverty. They’re just making excuses, I snorted.
Then, I grappled with powerlessness myself. When I was a missionary, an extortionist falsely accused me of a crime. I was the victim, but I feared the corrupt justice system coupled with anti-gringo sentiment would conspire to send me to the hellhole of jail in Guatemala. I fasted five days a week. I went to bed thinking about jail and woke up thinking about jail. I was gripped by the claws of powerlessness.
At the end, God vindicated the innocent. I learned to trust Him even in the ugliest of scenarios. And I no longer scoffed at powerlessness. It is a huge and terrifying force.
When you’re facing cancer, you can feel powerless. When the recession closes all doors to you. With your prodigal child. With your unfaithful spouse. Addiction can render you powerless to stop abusing drugs. A hurricane is coming, and you can’t stop it or escape. You cannot take control of your future. There is nothing you can do. It is out of your hands. Anyone can belittle your struggle, but only you face these demons alone.
Being powerless is good. It throws you on God entirely. It arouses faith like nothing else. Your moment of powerlessness will be hellish anguish. But it will also be sweetest fellowship with the Lord. (Praise and worship was my only relief from my living nightmare!)
When you are powerless, He remains powerful.