Friday, December 12, 2008
The rest of Noonan's article is worth your time to read--with a good cup of coffee, of course!
Friday, December 5, 2008
Near the conclusion of the sermon I delivered last Sunday, November 30, to the First Christian Church of Owensville congregation, I included the following quote from Professor Maier:
I believe that for many thousands who are listening in tonight the needs of a capable, competent counselor has perhaps never been as great as it is on this Christmas Day, when we remind ourselves that the past year has brought to millions a long series of disappointments of various kinds and degrees. You have gone on year after year with a smug sense of self-satisfaction and with a good deal of confidence in your money power, your brain power, your social power, but who have found that this house of cards in which you have enshrined your happiness has been puffed over by bank failures, financial reverses, war, and unemployment, and who now look about for some one and something that can effectively lift you out of the labyrinth of hopelessness and helplessness—you can find a divine Counselor in Bethlehem. Here is a counselor who is concerned first and foremost about the sole that lives on after the trinkets and baubles that men clutch so frantically crumble into disappointing dust. Here is the faithful and efficient Counselor, who tells us, ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of God,’ that is, get right with God. Remove the barrier that separates you from God and that keeps you away from the inner happiness which alone makes life worth living.
And when you come and ask, ‘How can I get right with God? How can I remove the impurity of sin from my life?’—great and wonderful Counselor that He is tells us, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, the Life.’…Never has His counsel failed; never is there any problem too intricate for His constructive solution; never is there any sorrow too deep to be healed by the balm if His consoling love. So tonight, when the joy of Christmas stands out in crying contrast to the sorrow that reigns in the hearts of some of my audience, when you think of your own misfortunes, of the gladness that has been turned to sadness through the coming of cold death or through the blasting of long-cherished hopes or through the tragedy that has followed in the wake of grievous sins; look above these difficulties to the Counselor, reposed in Bethlehem’s manger, and believe Him, when He calls out to you, ‘Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest' (p. 52).
During this Christmas season, there are two passages of Scripture that keep coming to my mind that certainly seem timely. One is taken from one of the apostle Paul's letters to his comrade Timothy:
But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs (1 Timothy 6:6-10, NIV).
The other passage, one that Maier briefly referred to, comes the lips of our Lord Jesus:
So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need (Matthew 6:31-33, NLT).
As the old hymn says, "Oh, what peace we often forfeit!" Well, let's not forfeit it this Christmas. Let us focus and follow the Prince of Peace who is also Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
1 Praise awaits you, O God, in Zion;
to you our vows will be fulfilled.
2 O you who hear prayer,
to you all men will come.
3 When we were overwhelmed by sins,
you forgave our transgressions.
4 Blessed are those you choose
and bring near to live in your courts!
We are filled with the good things of your house,
of your holy temple.
5 You answer us with awesome deeds of righteousness,
O God our Savior,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
and of the farthest seas,
6 who formed the mountains by your power,
having armed yourself with strength,
7 who stilled the roaring of the seas,
the roaring of their waves,
and the turmoil of the nations.
8 Those living far away fear your wonders;
where morning dawns and evening fades
you call forth songs of joy.
9 You care for the land and water it;
you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
to provide the people with grain,
for so you have ordained it.
10 You drench its furrows
and level its ridges;
you soften it with showers
and bless its crops.
11 You crown the year with your bounty,
and your carts overflow with abundance.
12 The grasslands of the desert overflow;
the hills are clothed with gladness.
13 The meadows are covered with flocks
and the valleys are mantled with grain;
they shout for joy and sing. (NIV)
Monday, November 10, 2008
Newsweek’s Evan Thomas and Jon Meacham shared a bizarre Obama love-fest session with Charlie Rose on the PBS host’s program on Wednesday. Meacham stated that he was "very struck watching the stagecraft" of Obama and pointed out how Obama gave his victory speech by himself: "...[H]ave you ever seen a victory speech where there was no one else on stage? No adoring wife, no cute kid -- he is the message." Thomas went one step further in this vein: "There is a slightly creepy cult of personality about all of this." Rose confronted him on his use of this phrase, and he explained that it made him "a little uneasy that he's so singular. He's clearly managing his own spectacle. He knows how to do it. He's a -- I think, a deeply manipulative guy..." Later, all three marveled about how it was "amazing" that Obama "watches us watching him."
I was watching this interview when it first aired. The "creepy cult of personality" comment was quite attention-grabbing and not just for Charlie Rose. Meacham didn't disagree with Thomas' comment either.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Friday, November 7, 2008
Some wonder if Barack Obama is a hard leftist or more a pragmatic politician who simply rose in leftist precincts (that would be you, Hyde Park, Chicago). A less charged way to put the question would be: Is he a strict modern liberal, or possibly a man of some considerable moderate instincts? The obvious answer is: We're about to find out. But I think the more interesting answer is: He's about to find out. In the presidency, daily decisions become patterns become pictures become, in time, full-length portraits. In the Oval Office you meet yourself every day. It is going to be very interesting to see Mr. Obama meet himself in this way.
The "full-length portrait" that develops will be interesting to see. I pray it's a good picture that develops as a result of the prayers of the saints and the great sense of humility and holy fear that should come over anyone who wears the title and function, President of the United States of America.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
1. Pray more. 1 Thessalonians 5:17
2. Listen first. James 1:19
3. Work harder. Colossians 3:23
4. Serve others. Galatians 6:9
5. Defend life. Proverbs 24:11-12
6. Grumble less. James 5:9
7. Do justice. Amos 5:24
8. Love mercy. Micah 6:8
9. Walk humbly. Proverbs 15:33
10. Rejoice always. 1 Thessalonians 5:16
11. Trust Jesus. Revelation 19:6
Monday, November 3, 2008
The guy in the YouTube video isn't me. The credit goes to Billecbqrp:
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Michael Medved wrote a thought-provoking article, "Will the Return of Values Voters Bring Another Election Day Surprise?" In it, Medved recalls how four years ago the Election Day polls surprisingly showed how important moral and family values were to voters, something the media had largely ignored. There we were, two years into a two-front war, and voters cited moral values as the most important issue. Could it happen again?
Insightfully, Medved makes the important link between financial and family issues:
Controversies regarding the future of the family aren’t a distraction from financial challenges; for most Americans, there’s an inescapable connection between economic and values issues. Nothing brings long-termsecurity and prosperity more reliably than a stable, traditional family lifeand nothing predisposes people for a life of poverty more thanout-of-wedlock birth and marital chaos. The educational success of ourchildren, which directly determines their future financial future, dependsmore on the values they learn at home than the quality of their schools.Learning to work hard, to save money and to live within your means remains adependable path to economic advancement and the failure to learn those lessons (especially by political and business leaders) helped to create the current crisis.
Lord willing, come late Tuesday night or Wednesday morning we'll know if the majority of voters made the connection between what's really good for both their families and their billfolds.
Friday, October 24, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Friday, October 17, 2008
I believe there is a "Mr. Smith" somewhere in those halls of government today. Do you?
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Well, I know that body language is part of communication, but I decided to once again follow the listening suggestion. I believe I tried it about eight or twelve years ago, but not sure. Anyway, last Tuesday night I settled down in my swivel-recliner in my home "office" upstairs, turned on my Eton radio, tuned it to my local NPR radio station, 88.3 WNIN-FM, perked up my ears and began listening to the second 2008 Presidential Debate between Senators Obama and McCain, as well as feeling sorry for Mr. Brokaw whose pleas to follow the rules were virtually ignored.
Listening didn't change my mind about who I plan to vote for, but I think it did cause me to really concentrate on what the candidates were saying. It also seemed to magnify some super-repitive phrases of both candidates: Sen. Obama, "Look, ..." and Sen. McCain, "My friends, ..." Listening also helped me "hear" what they didn't talk about, like the issue of abortion (infanticide). Listening without seeing seemed to help eliminate the drama of the moment and "see" the substance or lack thereof.
One other thing I learned from the experience: I can fix a broken desk lamp while listening to a presidential debate and not miss a thing!
Saturday, October 4, 2008
"It is impossible to stand in the presence of God and be a pessimist." --Henry & Richard Blackaby in Experiencing God Day by Day, October 4.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Spurgeon's reading of six books a week and remembering what he read years later reminds me of Teddy Roosevelt's reading and remembering of at least five books a week, even during the most hectic times of his career.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
- Boil 2 cups of water on your alcohol, solid fuel or gas ultralight stove.
- Remove water from heat & add one package of Hungry Jack Easy Mash'd Potatoes. Five flavors available: Cheesy Homestyle, Hearty Baked, Creamy Butter, Premium Homestyle, & Roasted Garlic. (I buy mine at the local Dollar General Store for $1 a package.)
- Add 1/4 cup (more or less according to personal preference) of Bob's Red Mill Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP).
- Cover & let set for a couple of minutes to let the TVP soften.
This will feed one hungry person as a total meal or divide nicely for two folks with other side items.
Mr. Brooks saves discussing Senator Obama for a later day.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Anyway, in light of the recent Experience Wars being debated between the Republican and Democratic Presidential campaigns, Sowel's September 4, 2008 article, "Foreign Policy 'Experience,'" in the National Jewish Review makes for sound reading. From historical, experiential and observational perspectives, he helps the reader understand how to properly define "experience" and determine who actually has the most.
At an interest rate of 6 percent from the Bank of New York and the Bank of North America, the United States took out its first loan. The money went to pay the salaries of the president and members of Congress (p. 540).
It didn't take long did it?
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
One 12 ounce can of V8 Juice
One and a half Tspns of olive oil
Two Tbsps of Bob's Red Mill Soy Protein Powder.
Pour in about 1/2 of the can of juice into a glass. Add the protein powder and stir until well blended. Add the olive oil and stir. Add the rest of the juice and stir again. Drink.
Monday, September 8, 2008
Saturday, July 26, 2008
"Here indeed is conviction of sin: a person gripped by the awfulness of eternal loss. It arises from seeing a church standing for Christ, standing for eternal things, enduring worldly loss and disrepute for the greater riches found in the Spirit and, throughout all, standing united." --J.A. Motyer (Philippians. Inter-Varsity Press, 1999)
Friday, July 11, 2008
After reflecting upon the article, I concluded that I've been quite blessed with the majority of my post-secondary education being well-grounded. My bachelor's degree from Johnson Bible College was most definitely from a biblical world view and my graduate work that included Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis, Grace Theological Seminary, and The Center for the Advanced Studies of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean allowed me to continue to pursue my education from that framework.
Thursday, May 1, 2008
It will be interesting to see what part this movie will play in the great origins debate (or non-debate). Go see it and take a friend with you.
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Saturday, April 5, 2008
Bookert T. Washington was born on this day in 1856 and died in 1915. So far, I've read three biographical-related books about him and recommend all of them highly: Up from Slavery, his autobiography, Booker T. Washington and the Adult Education Movement by Virginia Lantz Denton, and Then Darkness Fled: The Liberating Wisdom of Booker T. Washington by Stephen Mansfield.
Recently, I discovered two interesting but different websites that include his namesake: Booker T. Washington Society and Booker T. Washington Inspirational Network. I also keep a link to both of these under the "News, Interests, & More" section of this blog site.
Our education systems could learn a lot from his whole-person (head, hands and heart) approach to learning.
Saturday, March 29, 2008
I knew it would be interesting, most of George Grant's writings are to me, but I didn't realize how inspirational and encouraging The Christian Almanac would be. The back cover of my edition provides a great overview:
For each day of the year [it] provides a wide range of useful information:
- A time line of events that place that day
- An essay of about a person or relevant event in Christian history
- Suggested Scripture readings that allow a reader to complete the entire
Bible in a single year.
- A memorable quote that enlightens each month's theme
- Acknowledgement of liturgical feast days and holidays where
Thursday, March 20, 2008
This Easter Sunday at 10:00 a.m. (CDST) at First Christian Church of Owensville (Indiana), the adult choir will be presenting The Power of the Cross by Marty Parks.
Friday, March 14, 2008
Thursday, March 13, 2008
You may view all of Olasky's World on the Web blogs at: http://www.worldontheweb.com/author/marvin-olasky/.