Friday, July 25, 2008

To Obey....


Samuel told Saul in 1 Samuel 15:22b - "Look: to obey is better than sacrifice, to pay attention is better than the fat of rams." We often try to cover up our sin by giving it some religious sounding rationale. God looks on the hearts and not the deeds. We must be careful to follow God's Word from our hearts.

Martin Luther has been quoted as saying that there are three things necessary to create a successful minister of God: prayer, meditation, and temptation. You'll really never know the strength and reality of your faith until you experience difficulty in life. You'll never know for sure whether God can be trusted or if you'll fail Him in His call on your life.

The apostle Peter thought his faith in Christ was solid until the temptation came to deny Him. Peter denied Jesus three times. Peter was horrified that he could do such a terrible thing. In order to discover this about himself, he needed to be placed in a situation to reveal his true condition. From this he learned about himself, and that his need was to trust and rely upon God completely.

God allows circumstances to develop around your life to give your faith opportunity to be proven. It is only when we are tested in battle that we become skilled warriors. You can be confident God will allow trials to come your way through situations like a false assault on your character, or a difficult relationship that requires unconditional love. These battles are sent your way to test what you know in the mind in order that they might become part of your heart. A friend used to say that the most difficult part of faith was 18 inches. The distance between your mind and your heart.

If you fail the test, do not be overly concerned. Just be sure to learn from it and grow through the experience just as Peter did.

For Kingdom Education,

Friday, July 18, 2008

High Thinking


Wow! Summer is flying by! In about 5 weeks the wonderful young charges that God has placed in our hands will be back eagerly (?) wanting to learn all the knowledge that we can give them. I hope that you are praying already about your class, your students, yourself in connection with this coming year.

Paul wrote to the church at Colosse, "Set your minds on what is above, not on what is on the earth." (Col. 3:2, HCSB). I often can be earth-focused instead of God-focused. (I know that you don't suffer from this malady).

I find that too often I spend my time concerned with the turmoils around me, and I don't even consider that God is on His throne. I can easily focus on the circumstances around me and think that everything is wrapped up in them. God challenges me throughout His Word to look at Him, to consider His ways, to see what He is doing in my life. Often when I am dealing with the issues in my life, I try to work through them with an earth-focus - when the real solution can only be found when I am God-focused.

Today, I want to challenge you to find a God-focus for your life. No matter what you are facing - look at it through the lenses of God's eyes, and it will take a totally different perspective. Center your minds upon God, and let Him direct you to the solutions you need.

For Kingdom Education,

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Faith of a Child


Jesus spoke of us trusting as a child. Child-like trust comes naturally to a child, but to those of us who are grown-up - it is not easy (maybe even impossible).

Last Friday I watched a couple of Teddy Bear Parades go by my office at the school. These were the young children of the child development center walking proudly down the hall displaying their prized possession - a Teddy Bear. They smiled and waved, but they clutched that bear oh so tight. In fact, I would dare say, that most would not let go of that bear for anything.

We are like those children, we clutch our prized possessions closely. We won't let them go for anything. Our possessions make us feel secure and loved. Yet, just as those bears, they are incapable of providing any real security or love. We focus on the inanimate and miss out on the real.

Real trust should be like this - but focused on what really counts. Jesus. Trusting Him, holding on to Him, relying on Him, seeking after Him. And, doing it just as a child and their Teddy Bear. Today, let go of your prized Teddy Bear, and grab hold of Him.

For Kingdom Education,

Monday, July 7, 2008

Awesome God


We are back from our vacation, and I must say that God spoke in awesome ways through His Creation.

We took three trips up to the "Royal Gorge Overlook" in the mountains of Ridgecrest, NC. Each trip spoke of the majesty of God. The first trip we took the trail. We saw beautiful fungi (my wife has a picture of it) that looked like a yellow flower growing out of the dead tree. We saw Rhododendron bushes in bloom, trees and shrubs - all showing the variety of our God. At the top, we were able to look across at least six mountain ranges in the distance. The beauty was beyond my ability to describe.

The second trip, we walked up the road (that is a story in itself - 1 mile almost straight up). Again, the view at the top made it worth the effort put out to get there. We took our books to sit and read for a while. While reading, my wife looked behind us and discovered that a storm was heading our way. Needless to say, we made a quick trip back down. Even the dark rolling clouds spoke of the majesty of God.

The final trip, we cheated and drove our car up. It was the last thing we did before leaving Ridgecrest. We had to go back one last time to see the awesome display of the majestic creative hand of God.

I thought of the Psalmist words dealing with our Creator. Psalm 66 speaks of God's mighty acts. Verse 3 says, "Say to God, 'How awe-inspiring are Your works!'"

All I can add is "AMEN!"

For Kingdom Education,

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