Taking the Word to the World

Archive for November, 2014

Stay Away from Stupid!

The world has always been focused about forming the church and Christians into their faulty, fallen fallacy. We are used to that. There is nothing new about being encouraged to conform to the prevailing culture of society. We’ve always had to be counter-culture with the world. For decades we have struggled but things seem to be sliding quickly closer and closer to home. Now, things have turned. Not only are we called upon to be counter-culture with society but with the church world.

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I recently was with a couple of young people talking about the most recent books they had been reading. I was unpleasantly surprised. I walked away deeply concerned. I’m sure they thought through reading they were fulfilling Paul’s encouragement to Timothy in II Timothy 2:15. Or, at least, I hope that was their motivation. There is a big difference between studying the Word and the word of others. One is approved by God, enabling us to be a worker in God’s kingdom without shame, rightly dividing His Word. The other is detested by God, produces a person muddled, misinformed, mistaken, and mixed up; un-rightly and dangerously dividing the Word of God. Scares me just typing it! Later, I thought—and I know it isn’t rocket science— there is an enormous metamorphosis between being studious and stupid. 

Don’t get me wrong. I believe in being cutting-edge and up-to-snuff. I really do! Finding modern ways to express the old path; that is cutting-edge and culturally-relevant biblically. I want to be liberal enough to use new ways and conservative enough to stick with God’s solid, specific path.

Changing apostolic doctrine to fit the times is just plain stupid. It’s dangerous and not merely on the edge; it’s totally over it. I nearly freaked out an entire primary school one time when I used the word “stupid.” They had been taught using the word was paramount to cursing. Perhaps so! Changing God’s Word to facilitate prevailing thinking may very well bring a curse. Let me try to improve my wording. Changing apostolic doctrine to fit the times is unwise, senseless, ill-advised, and thoughtless. How’s that?

I am deeply disturbed and profoundly perplexed when I meet young and old alike that cannot explain why they believe our foundational, fundamental doctrine. They know what they believe but have no idea why they believe it. The danger in that is one day we could produce a generation that does not believe. What a tragedy! But the reverse is so inspiring and encouraging:  “And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, the repairer of the breach, the restorer of the paths to dwell in” (Isaiah 58:12). 

Here are four ways that make that possible. I’m sure there any many more.

Speak it     

 Speak the Word of God in your life continually.

Study it 

 Be committed to studying God’s Word and receiving it.

Do it 

 Be willing to do what the Word of God says.

Love it 

 Love God’s Word. Depend on it; not merely the philosophies of me.

Follow those four points and you will stay away from stupid!

photo credit: Alex E. Proimos via photopin cc

Guest Post: #IAmGlobal

For today’s post I’m reaching back to the Global Missions Service at this year’s UPCI General Conference… thinking not only about the incredible things that God did that night, but the “trickle-down” effects of that service as well.

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$4.3 Million Dollars

That’s what was raised in the span of roughly 2 hours, by 6-7,000 people in one room and more that were watching via streaming video. It didn’t happen by itself however…

The service began as many do: Anointed singing, some preliminaries and Liz & I were invited to participate in the parade of nations. What an honour! Then someone introduced the #IamGlobal offering that was about to be taken. Missionary kids began heaving inflatable globes through the audience and Liz caught a couple, with the help of missionary to Ireland, Cindy McFarland (pictured above). People or churches offering $5,000 or more would receive a small “I am Global” crystal globe. Some went up to do that but more went once the number dropped below $1,000.

Then something changed. Pastor @AnthonyMangun (Alexandria, LA) got up to preach. #WowQuote of the evening was this:

“We’re very quick to use the term apostolic on our facebook & twitter profiles, but before we use that term next, we need to also look at our bank accounts.”

… his implication: does our giving reflect the same pattern of sacrificial giving as seen in the life of the apostles?

IamGlobalSomething happened. Conviction swept in and many people gave offerings larger than $5,000…without the promise of a trinket. One person was selling a business for $150,000.00 and that money has already been received by Global Missions.

Therein we see the power of the word of God: to convict the hearts of Christians and bring about sacrificial giving for the purpose of global missions. What caused that miracle offering:  the teaching of God’s word received by soft hearts.

More than an offering

I love the name of the offering… “I am Global”,  because every time we say it we:

  1. Reaffirm our connection to that miracle offering and
  2. we reiterate the need to look for a harvest beyond ourselves.

Our Kids are Global

Kids_IamGlobal_1Liz brought back a globe for each of the Kids. They weren’t in that service, but we want them to be connected to that same spirit… to see themselves as Global.

Of course, they’ll see themselves asGlobal by virtue of the fact that they’ll be living in France for a time, but more than that, we remind them that they’re not just going to France to “watch mom & dad do their missionary thing,” rather, God wants to use them as well: whether through helping with music in the church or showing the love of God to new friends outside the church.

Prayer

  • Pray that God prepares our kids; that they truly grow to see themselves as Global. That he use them to Advance His Kingdom.
  • Later this evening we’ll be ministering in the first French service being organized byPastor Mike Noel of Life Church, in Campbellton, NB. Pray for revival among the French community of northern New Brunswick.

Thank you for your prayers… they make you part of #Revival_inFrance!