January 21, 2008

Snow Flakes & God Moments

The other day when it started snowing I was on the way to Best Buy with my son Garren. When we left the store to get back in the truck it had really started coming down. We got in the truck, and Garren looked down at his sleeve to check out one of the flakes that had stuck to his arm. He said "This doesn't really look like a snowflake."

After a little more discussion, it turned out his only point of reference for what a snowflake looks like is the cut-out-of-paper snowflakes. Then I said, "Did you realize that there are no two snowflakes alike?" That got us to thinking -- all the snowflakes in the world, throughout the history of snowflakes, are different. How creative our God must be to come up with that many different snowflakes!

Our God truly is amazing, and to spend that much detail on something as small and insignificant as a snowflake is really pretty amazing. Think how much more He cares about you!

There is still one question I need your help with. If no two snowflakes are alike, then how do we know what a snowflake looks like?

January 14, 2008

Is A Relationship Important?

I had a conversation with someone today that kinda left me wondering. Actually, it mostly left me bothered. This person was visiting another church in another town. She had the opportunity to visit a small group. In the course of the conversation within the group, the topic of a daily quiet time (personal time set aside to read God's Word and pray) came up. Several in the group made the point that they went to church, that they came to small group, and that they had no further need to do anything in their relationship with Jesus Christ.

Hmm. Let's talk about relationships...suppose I were to get married, and go to the wedding, and then show up once a year for my anniversary. I wouldn't have much of a marriage to speak of. Although I would technically be married, there would be no relationship to speak of. I could even up my visits to once a month (or how about once a week!) But this would still be FAR from a true relationship.

When we talk about a relationship with Jesus Christ, it is so much more than just church attendance (which for some is once a year). It goes way beyond monthly or weekly church attendance. Going to church will not grow your relationship, at least not if that is all you do.

If I want a relationship with my wife (and I do) then I have to spend time with her. I have to sacrifice time, and other things, to be with her. Only when I am willing to give up my own desires to spend time getting to know her will we truly be able to build a relationship with each other.

Church attendance is not enough. Small groups (as important as they are) are not enough. We have to make time (a sacrifice) every day to read God's Word and pray. We need it. Our relationship with Jesus depends on this time.

Have you had your quiet time today? Maybe you should quit reading blogs and go read the Bible!

January 03, 2008

"Religion is the Opium of the People"

Ever heard that before? I am reading the book by Ravi Zacharias called "Beyond Opinion." I was reading the chapter called Challenges from Atheism. The famous quote is from Karl Marx - "Religion is the opium of the people." The basic idea is that God is some kind of spiritual narcotic that dulls our senses to the pain of the world and helps us cope with it.

Then along came the Polish Poet Czeslaw Milosz. He said "Religion, opium for the people! The true opium of modernity is the belief that there is no God, so that humans are free to do precisely as they please."

It is true that man creates god(s) in his own image. We project our ideas of what we want God to be. Some even try to project the absence of a god so that they can live any way they please. The truth is something that cannot be changed. God does exist. We were created by Him, not the other way around.

What does this mean for you?

Actual 1955 Goodhousekeeping Article

Here's a fun article - enjoy!
(click on the image to enlarge)

January 02, 2008

Check Your Pockets!

My son Garren got an iPod for Christmas. He loves it. He plays with it. He bought a cool little leather case to keep it safe. It's the new slim version of the Nano with video. It's pretty sweet.

So anyway, Nancy bought a couple of duffel bags for our kids, so they can pack for overnight trips to friend's houses, or Grandma and Grandpa's house. Just something big enough to carry a few important things that one might need on an overnight trip.

The zipper broke on Garren's bag. Bummer. So Nancy did what any good American consumer does. She returned it. Walgreens gladly exchanged the broken bag for a new one. Pretty cool.

Until the next day - Garren said "Mom, did you get my iPod out of the pocket on the duffel bag before you returned it?" "WHAT?? There was an iPod in the POCKET???"

It was about 8:30 at night. Nancy and Garren and his friend hopped in the car and rushed to Walgreens. They asked about the returned bag. The store attendant looked in the back...no broken bags there. They looked under the checkout counter...nothing.

Then the store attendant said "Maybe they put it back on the shelf." Yes, even though it was clearly broken, they might try to resell it to some unsuspecting customer. So they ran to the aisle with the duffel bags and started opening pockets. Just when all hope seemed to be gone, Garren looked in one last bag...AND THERE IT WAS!!!" How amazing is that? To God be the glory! How unlikely is it that they would ever see that iPod again? Pretty amazing!

Thank you Lord for letting us find the iPod!