>Was Our Lord Just Having Fun?

>Colossians1.16 declares, “For by Him (Jesus) all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things were created through Him and for Him.”

Pictured is a transparent sea cucumber captured 1.7 miles beneath the Gulf of Mexico. Yikes?

Jesus created this? Yup. Why? Beats me. But I wonder if He had a grin as He molded this together….

>Answering the "Hypocrite" Excuse

>The often-raised “excuse” for not going to church is “There are too many hypocrites there.”

A classic, though not kind answer, “That’s okay, there is plenty of room for another one.”

But a while ago someone played that excuse on me, and I responded, “Don’t you like the NFL?”

“Well, yeah.”

“Of course you know there are a lot of scum bags in the National Football League?”

“Well, yeah.”

“But you still like the NFL, right?”

Not sure if I made my point, but it works for me!

>Permissible Versus Beneficial

>Here is great stuff from Mark Batterson:

Everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial.”

Your future is found in I Corinthians 10:23. It reveals two options: permissible or beneficial. And your destiny will be determined by which option you choose.

Who we become is determined by whether we settle for what is permissible or strive for what is beneficial. It’s so tempting to live down to what is required. It’s so tempting to live in our comfort zone. It’s so tempting to take the path of least resistance, but the path of least resistance never takes you where you really want to go!

What am I getting at? Well, are you setting for what is permissible? Or are you striving for what is beneficial? Are you giving God leftovers? Or are you seeking first the kingdom of God? Where are you compromising? Where have you become comfortable with what is permissible?

Don’t let short-term comfort short-circuit God’s long-terms plans for your life. Spiritual short-cuts always turn into detours! Take the hard way. Take the high road. Strive for what is beneficial.

>The (U.S.) Mission Field

>Though I remain convinced that the Spirit-powered Word of God is bigger than statistics and surveys, the following video (thanks to my friend John Gilberts for pointing me to it) is stunningly convincing that, first, our nation is a HUGE mission field (as opposed to those who declare it “gospel-saturated”) and that we need to seize the technology available to supplement the “foolishness of preaching”
http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=2301882&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

Our Mission Field from City on a Hill Productions on Vimeo.

>Living Broken in Brokenness

>
This is taken from an article titled “The Gospel-Driven Organization” by James Tonyowich, PhD in the “Christian Leadership Alliance.” It is well-worth a slow read:

“We ourselves are broken. When God called Isaiah, he responded, “Woe is me! I’m ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips … ” (Is 6:5). Peter’s initial response to Jesus was, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man” (Lk 5:8b). St. Paul counted himself “the worst of sinners” (1T 1:16).

“The Gospel frees us to know the truth about who we are: broken, sinful creatures.

“As former Westminster Seminary professor Jack Miller used to quip, “Cheer up, my friend! You’re far worse than you think. And God is far more loving and kind than you ever dreamed or imagined.”

“If we do not have an understanding of our brokenness, it is an indication that we do not understand the Gospel and we and our organizations will probably do more damage than good.

“Not only are we broken, we work in a broken world filled with broken people — many of whom are Christians. Years ago, Richard Lovelace, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary professor and long time church renewal figure, taught me what I consider the most valuable lesson I have ever learned for ministry. “It is very difficult,” he said, “to tell the difference between wolves in sheep’s clothing and very confused, very broken, very angry sheep.”

I added the “bold” to the sentence that slapped me in the side of the head…