This past Sunday I declared that I am officially over with Winter. That is, I am done with it, but the weather models shows that I may have to endure this another 45 to 60 days of on again off again nasty weather in the Midwestern States. Between the shoveling, snow-blowing, driving to and fro and just being downright cold, I have had enough of this. Bring on the swimming pools and beaches – I am ready regardless of the heat!
Super Bowl Sunday is upon us and I am a Bears Fan to the death but I have always been a fan of the Orange Crush and Peyton Manning. Recently, following Mark Driscoll I was turned onto this video on YouTube with Russell Wilson and other players from the Seattle SeaHawks. You can click on the interview here. I was impressed and I am still impressed with the poise and integrity of this man and the players/coach that surrounded him in this interviews.
Lately I have been inquisitive on the music choices and programming that my kids desired and was rudely awakened by just how much hollywood and the entertainment world vies for our kids hearts and minds. I have a middle daughter who is 8 years old. The one thing that I firmly believe is that I will let my kids be free to express themselves and their likes and dislikes and so on. However, they do have boundaries and they do have limits on that expression: The Litmus Test being the word of God (aka the Bible). For instance, my daughter is/was a huge fan of Justin Bieber. My wife and daughter saw his video in which he prayed and made reference that there was some fruit in his life in regards to Jesus – so we permitted this to continue. If you are like me and you have seen the news, Justin’s influences (bad company) and his choices have turned him to a dark path that clearly needs repentance (if he truly has a relationship with Jesus Christ). That being said, I recently had a conversation with her about this and she realizes that she needs to find other venues to follow.
This inquired me to reflect and YouTube and check all various sources of TV and Music entertainment that are seeking to destroy my children’s purity. If you really want to go overboard then google search the Illuminati and Beyoncé and the Occult and you will be shocked – what Legacy are we leaving our kids? The last straw, for me, was driving in this morning and listening to moody radio and how they were talking about a Disney Show that my children all watch: Good Luck, Charlie. This, I thought, was a somewhat decent (wholesome show) until they inserted into their programming a lesbian couple in that series – why? Disney was asked about this, of course, and their response was to show a more rounded perspective of real life scenarios – really? Why not show someone getting murdered (or how about decapitated) or a husband cheating on his wife in adultery or a man watching porn or a woman doing something completely contradictory to social norm. The point that I am trying to bring her and to challenge is this: Be free to make your own choices in this life BUT DON’T PROGRAM MY CHILDREN TO THINK that your choices are healthy and/or Biblical – they are not.
I don’t want to pass judgement here on anyone because Lance and I sin every day (just ask our wives). But we both admit and confess to one thing: God is a Holy God and He is not mocked. He is pure and righteous and has given us the gift of salvation and forgiveness through the death and resurrection of His Son Jesus Christ. That being said, if we don’t know his Son as our savior then there will be a day of reckoning called the Great White Throne Judgement. There will be a day of reckoning in that every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Woe to those that lead God’s children the wrong way. Woe to the teachers and false testimonies that say that sin and impurity is acceptable in our culture. Woe to those who say that anything that is contrary to the word of God is acceptable – it simply is not!
Now here is where the church, in my opinion, has blown it over the years. Because we are in the world (not of the world) and because we are called to be pure and holy through sanctification of the saints we can be guilty of pride and guilt of judging others before we judge ourselves. We cannot do that. We cannot simply close our doors and create our own version of sanctity by not letting the world inside our doors. Quite the contrary, if you ask me, we have to love and to share and give them the good news of our Lord and Savior. We have to show them Christ instead of denying them. We have to be the hands and feet. My senior pastor is a true witness of this – there is transforming power in the word of God – all we have to do is live it and not deny it.
I am free to be me simply means that I once was lost but now am found. I was once a slave to sin and because of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ I am free to live. I once was hopeless and now have hope. In other words, I am free to be me. I am free to be the person that God created me to be – his adopted son and heir to his Kingdom – WOW! If you knew me and knew where I came from you would say wow too.
I do not want to be a hypocrite were others see my life and do not see Jesus. I want to live a life that even when false accusation and trials and tribulations malign me and my integrity that I can bear witness to the King of Kings.
1 Timothy 6
New International Version (NIV)
6 All who are under the yoke of slavery should consider their masters worthy of full respect, so that God’s name and our teaching may not be slandered.2 Those who have believing masters should not show them disrespect just because they are fellow believers. Instead, they should serve them even better because their masters are dear to them as fellow believers and are devoted to the welfare[a] of their slaves.
False Teachers and the Love of Money
These are the things you are to teach and insist on.3 If anyone teaches otherwise and does not agree to the sound instruction of our Lord Jesus Christ and to godly teaching, 4 they are conceited and understand nothing. They have an unhealthy interest in controversies and quarrels about words that result in envy, strife, malicious talk, evil suspicions 5 and constant friction between people of corrupt mind, who have been robbed of the truth and who think that godliness is a means to financial gain.
6 But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7 For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8 But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9 Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. 10 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.
Final Charge to Timothy
11 But you, man of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. 12 Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 In the sight of God, who gives life to everything, and of Christ Jesus, who while testifying before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you 14 to keep this command without spot or blame until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 which God will bring about in his own time—God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16 who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen.
17 Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 18 Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.
20 Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge, 21 which some have professed and in so doing have departed from the faith.
Grace be with you all.