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Building Your Faith – Part 1 – Read Your Bible May 22, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Bible, Faith.
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I recently completed a bit of writing for a project for my local church. It has provided a great deal of material for me to blog about. Hopefully, I will be a little more productive in the coming days. Today, I present part 1 on the topic of “building your faith”.

How do I build my faith?

Is faith like a muscle that I need to exercise?
or
Is faith something that is given to me like a gift?

I think the answer is “Yes” and “Yes!”

During the class that I was leading last Sunday, I asked how many of them would be willing to put all of their trust in someone whom they had never met or had little knowledge of?

Many of them stared at me with a puzzled expression. (OK, so that part is not so unusual)

Finally after a span of silence someone indicated that they could never trust someone that they didn’t know. Well, the exact same thing is true of God. Why on earth would you ever trust a God you do not know? To know God is to know His Word, the Bible. Reading your Bible is an excellent way to build your faith in God; learning all about the wonderful promises he has in store for your life.

The Bible is many things. It is the story of God as shown by how He has related to mankind from man’s first breath. It is both historical and personal. It is tells stories. And it contains God’s words to me.

Are you looking to build your faith?

Start by getting to know the object of your faith — God. And get to know Him through the reading and understanding of His Word, the Bible.

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Know-it-all? May 8, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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I was teaching an erstwhile Sunday School Class last Sunday morning and something dawned on me. Yes, me, the teacher.

I was leading a discussion on Bible study as a basic discipline of the Christian life. One of my comments was that we should have an intense drive to study the Bible. I followed that statement with another statement that built upon it by saying that it should be akin some of the secular interests that we have.

And then it hit me.

Let me explain.

I recently purchased a new “toy”. It is something that I have wanted for quite some time. It was a significant purchase and I needed to sell a similar “toy” in order to have the money to buy the new one. In short it was a significant purchase.

There are many choices that I could have made. So, in order to make the very best decision I began some intense research. I looked at all of the manufacturers. I looked at the independent reviews. I researched the good and bad points about this item by reading through many of the User Forums on the internet. I even joined a few of them and began participating in the discussion. In a short few months, I became somewhat of an expert. I became a “Know-it-all” in the best sense of the word.

I now know a great deal about that item and I was prepared to make the purchase. So, I did. And I am now a happy and confident owner.

Now, juxtapose that experience with my discussion last Sunday morning. Do you get it? I got it! I clearly felt God whispering to me,

“Are you as intensely passionate and driven to study My Word?”

I had to confess that I was not at the time as intensely passionate about the Bible and reading and meditating on it.

The intent of this post is not to make anyone feel guilty. That was certainly not the way God dealt with me. God dealt with me gently and lovingly. Let him deal with you that way and re-ignite in you a drive and desire for Him and His Word.

Photo (c) FreeFoto.com
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

Know-it-all? May 8, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Bible, Bible Study, Sunday School.
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I was teaching an erstwhile Sunday School Class last Sunday morning and something dawned on me. Yes, me, the teacher.

I was leading a discussion on Bible study as a basic discipline of the Christian life. One of my comments was that we should have an intense drive to study the Bible. I followed that statement with another statement that built upon it by saying that it should be akin some of the secular interests that we have.

And then it hit me.

Let me explain.

I recently purchased a new “toy”. It is something that I have wanted for quite some time. It was a significant purchase and I needed to sell a similar “toy” in order to have the money to buy the new one. In short it was a significant purchase.

There are many choices that I could have made. So, in order to make the very best decision I began some intense research. I looked at all of the manufacturers. I looked at the independent reviews. I researched the good and bad points about this item by reading through many of the User Forums on the internet. I even joined a few of them and began participating in the discussion. In a short few months, I became somewhat of an expert. I became a “Know-it-all” in the best sense of the word.

I now know a great deal about that item and I was prepared to make the purchase. So, I did. And I am now a happy and confident owner.

Now, juxtapose that experience with my discussion last Sunday morning. Do you get it? I got it! I clearly felt God whispering to me,

“Are you as intensely passionate and driven to study My Word?”

I had to confess that I was not at the time as intensely passionate about the Bible and reading and meditating on it.

The intent of this post is not to make anyone feel guilty. That was certainly not the way God dealt with me. God dealt with me gently and lovingly. Let him deal with you that way and re-ignite in you a drive and desire for Him and His Word.

Photo (c) FreeFoto.com
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

Time May 2, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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Time.

We are each given 24 hours a day. No more. No less.

So why does time seem to pass so swiftly for some and not for others?

I have not posted lately. I haven’t had enough time to write anything.

No, wait a minute. That’s not right. I just said we each have 24 hours a day. Notice, I didn’t say, “You have about 26 or 27 hours a day and I only have about 19.”

But I digress. Back to my question. “So why does time seem to pass so swiftly for some and not for others?

Time May 2, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Time.
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Time.

We are each given 24 hours a day. No more. No less.

So why does time seem to pass so swiftly for some and not for others?

I have not posted lately. I haven’t had enough time to write anything.

No, wait a minute. That’s not right. I just said we each have 24 hours a day. Notice, I didn’t say, “You have about 26 or 27 hours a day and I only have about 19.”

But I digress. Back to my question. “So why does time seem to pass so swiftly for some and not for others?

The Day My Life Changed . . . Again March 21, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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There have been many days in my life that have been “life changing.” March 19th was the most recent and one of the most dramatic.

On March 19th at 12:01 PM my daughter and her husband gave birth to their first child and my first grandchild. It was an extraordinary day and one that I know I will never forget. Just a glimpse of that baby through the glass and I knew that I had lost what little of my heart I had left. He already owned part of it from the time I knew that he was being formed in his mother’s womb.

But to see his face . . . That was special.

And then to hold him in my arms . . . That was unbelievable.

I am incredibly blessed. God has given me a family that loves me and that family is growing.

Does it get any better than this?

The Day My Life Changed . . . Again March 21, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Change, Hunter, Life, Love.
3 comments

There have been many days in my life that have been “life changing.” March 19th was the most recent and one of the most dramatic.

On March 19th at 12:01 PM my daughter and her husband gave birth to their first child and my first grandchild. It was an extraordinary day and one that I know I will never forget. Just a glimpse of that baby through the glass and I knew that I had lost what little of my heart I had left. He already owned part of it from the time I knew that he was being formed in his mother’s womb.

But to see his face . . . That was special.

And then to hold him in my arms . . . That was unbelievable.

I am incredibly blessed. God has given me a family that loves me and that family is growing.

Does it get any better than this?

Foundational Thoughts Bring Me Peace February 4, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
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I have been thinking a lot about the subject of “Change” lately. And all of the changes going on around me have caused me to think about some foundational thoughts from our past and to look to some of the folks who have shaped our doctrine and theology. One of those “shapers” is Martin Luther, the great reformer. Below is his morning prayer as recorded in his Small Catechism.

I thank you, my heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ, your dear Son, that you have kept me this night from all harm and danger; and I pray that you would keep me this day also from sin and every evil, that all my doings in life may please you. For into your hands I commend myself, my body and soul, and all things. Let your holy angel be with me, that the evil foe may have no power over me. Amen.

Nothing gives me more peace in the midst of life’s many changes than being able to put myself into God’s hands on a daily basis. This prayer is marvelous in its simplicity. It covers all of the bases.

  • It has an acknowledgment of who God is and who His Son is.
  • It offers thanks for his protection.
  • It calls upon the only One who can truly help us.
  • It places us into the hands of a loving God.
  • And it asks for God’s power and protection.

That’s pretty powerful for such few words. I think I’ll give it a try tomorrow morning.

Change . . . Me? January 24, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Change, Heart, Inevitable.
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Our former pastor and his wife used to sing a song every once in a while back when we lived in the Washington, DC area. That song was “Change My Heart O God” by Eddie Espinosa. Here are the lyrics in case you don’t know it.

Change My Heart Oh God
Change my heart oh God
Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God
May I be like You

Change my heart oh God
Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God
May I be like You

You are the potter
I am the clay
Mold me and make me
This is what I pray

Change my heart oh God
Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God
May I be like You

That song did not mean as much to me back then as it does today. Today, my life is all about change. There are changes at work. There are changes at church. There are changes at home. Change is everywhere.

Benjamin Franklin said, “There is nothing certain in this world but death and taxes.” And I would add one more thing to that list; Change!

But let me split a few hairs with the beloved Benjamin Franklin. I would suggest that external change is in fact inevitable. While internal change is not inevitable. So, while the world around me is rapidly changing, it is up to me do determine if I will accept those changes or reject them.

We recently elected a president in the United States who ran on a platform of “Hope and Change”. Not all change is good. Not all change is bad. But this much I know. God wants to deal with changes in me at a heart level. While I may want to make cosmetic changes on the outside. god wants to change me from the inside.

So, those lyrics that Pastor John and Amy used to sing are ringing in my ears today. And I say with them, “Change my heart, oh God.” Then and only then will I be able to be effective in ministry and demonstrate life-altering change the way that Jesus Christ intended.

What about you? Are there any big changes going on in your life? Are there big changes going on in your heart?

Change . . . Me? January 24, 2009

Posted by Kevin in Uncategorized.
Tags: , ,
add a comment

Our former pastor and his wife used to sing a song every once in a while back when we lived in the Washington, DC area. That song was “Change My Heart O God” by Eddie Espinosa. Here are the lyrics in case you don’t know it.

Change My Heart Oh God
Change my heart oh God
Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God
May I be like You

Change my heart oh God
Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God
May I be like You

You are the potter
I am the clay
Mold me and make me
This is what I pray

Change my heart oh God
Make it ever true
Change my heart oh God
May I be like You

That song did not mean as much to me back then as it does today. Today, my life is all about change. There are changes at work. There are changes at church. There are changes at home. Change is everywhere.

Benjamin Franklin said, “There is nothing certain in this world but death and taxes.” And I would add one more thing to that list; Change!

But let me split a few hairs with the beloved Benjamin Franklin. I would suggest that external change is in fact inevitable. While internal change is not inevitable. So, while the world around me is rapidly changing, it is up to me do determine if I will accept those changes or reject them.

We recently elected a president in the United States who ran on a platform of “Hope and Change”. Not all change is good. Not all change is bad. But this much I know. God wants to deal with changes in me at a heart level. While I may want to make cosmetic changes on the outside. god wants to change me from the inside.

So, those lyrics that Pastor John and Amy used to sing are ringing in my ears today. And I say with them, “Change my heart, oh God.” Then and only then will I be able to be effective in ministry and demonstrate life-altering change the way that Jesus Christ intended.

What about you? Are there any big changes going on in your life? Are there big changes going on in your heart?