What is this world coming to?

I often ask the same question as I look at our world. As I study reformation history in school, I am reminded that the loss of morals in our country is not new to history, only new to the U.S. God's word tells me that I am part of the problem excepting God's grace, and I partake of the solution only out of His goodness!

Ephesians 2:1-10
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience-- among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ--by grace you have been saved-- and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.


God's sense of humor?

I can't help but wonder if God was laughing the day he made this rainbow!

The Psalmist tells us that the heavens declare God's handiwork, and maybe this is a picture of how we, in our fallen state, work to ruin all that God has made beautiful!

Or, maybe it's a reminder of God's common grace experienced through indoor plumbing!


Ready for Winter

We put Kate in her new winter hat today. And I think she learned to smile at the camera at the same time! This was just another one of those days of kate doing something new, and those days always bring great joy to us!

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Playing with Picasa
Kate the Theologian
Kate the theologian

Our Children

"For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment. Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother
conceive me
. Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart."
Psalm 51:3-6

It's not our environment that makes us sinful, but it can be our environment that moves us to perpetuate that sin in our lives. As humans, we are born in sin according to God's word. We are born into a state Paul calls, "Dead in sin". The Holy Spirit renews us by giving us a new heart, but we must be concerned with fostering the growth of our new life. Our fear in today's society is being "legalistic". But we must remember that doing all we can to be pleasing to God isn't legalism, but rather it is being a child of God adopted into the family.

Children are a gift from the Lord, and it is our responsibility to raise them in the covenant community teaching them about God as we go. We are to do all we can to keep them from the evils of this world so they are not corrupted at a young age, but shielding them from opportunities for sin isn't our only endeavor. We must prepare them to stand firm in the Lord.

We must TEACH our children about God. We must SHOW them how to live "in Christ". We must TALK to them about God every day. We must MODEL the word of God before them day and night. Praise God for His grace that enables us to do this!
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I think the baptism wore her out.
Gumbunny and Kate at Panera Bread. This is after the baptism. Oh, the glorious baptism...We all remember that day!
Peggy, Kate, and the horse at Hilton Head.



Our world continually teaches us to examine ourselves to see how we can improve upon ourselves. Below is a quote I read the other day (can't remember where from), but I think it speaks great truth.

"Introspective activities are usually done in such a way as to bring glory to man rather than God"

We need to ensure that our self examinations are done in light of God's word. We are sinners deserving of nothing but the wrath of God. Christ took the wrath we deserve upon Himself; thus, I am granted entrance into heaven as a free gift.

The Spirit of God applies our redemption to us and sanctifies us causing us to look upon our sin and repent of it. Introspection is good, but we must note our likelihood of falling short of God's glory in all activities of life. Glorification is complete, but not yet realized, "for those he predestined, he also called, and those he called he also justified, and those he justified, he also glorified..."


That's what it means to you

Ever heard this? "That's what it means to you, but there are different ways to interpret it."

I've heard this especially when discussing scripture. And yes, scripture may have different interpretations, but it doesn't mean interpretations other than the truth are right. They are dead wrong. Why do we insist on an individualism in our society that makes conformity to real absolute truth a negative.

We want unity and peace so we confirm everyone's ignorance as truth so as to not offend anyone. I have one thing to say about that. Please offend me. I want to know the truth, and I definitely want to know when I'm not in it.

Jesus says, "I am the way, the truth, and the life and no one comes to the father except through me."

Looks like Jesus holds to a single absolute truth.


Is life a game?

Decision making between teams (i.e. groups at a place of employment) tend to have a push pull relationship. One group's decisions are based on the other group's decisions; therefore, each group attempts to influence the other group. Strife and contention are readily available if not properly managed in most environments such as this. In a society built on an economy allowing each individual to rise above the peers, this becomes a great game.

The challenge for a Christian in this environment is to not be so caught up in the game to ignore or neglect the commands of God and the fruit which comes from living "in Christ". It is easy to become manipulative or contentious striving to win, but we are called to be loving while working as to the Lord and not to men (Eph 6:7). What work does God call us to? We are called to love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind, and soul (Mt 22:38), and to love our neighbor as ourself (Mt 22:39).

Where is the contention and strife in this statment? We often talk about balancing our desire to win with our desire to serve God. On the contrary, God calls us to do both 100%. Maybe our definition of winning is a little off. In truth, we should give 100% of our effort in daily activities while striving in each of those activities to display our love for God.

Drive by love to please God for His glory and satisfaction. That's the life I desire. May the Holy Spirit so change me to be this.


My Sinablity to Worship

Our sin keeps us from worshiping God as we should.  We refuse to exalt Him recognizing Him as the giver of all things.  We deny this in ourselves thinking that our trifle prayers before meals suffice to bring proper praise to the creator of everything we know to exist.  I’m writing today to admit my guilt in failing to truly be thankful to God.  

I pray the Spirit will give me greater thankfulness for God’s work in my life and that this thankfulness will affect me.  I want it to permeate my entire being and effect change within my thinking and acting.  I want the base of my framework for life to be filled with recognition that although I work for a living, my ability to work, the objects I work upon, and the people I work with and for all come from God and are sustained by God.  It’s an awesome realization that has not fully taken control of me.  If it had, I wouldn’t have to plan time for prayer.  I wouldn’t day dream during my prayers.  I wouldn’t lose focus when praying with others.  

Yes, sin keeps me from worshipping God as I should, but the Spirit sustains me enabling me to worship God in my weakness.  Come Holy Spirit and dwell within me and enable me to live in Christ.


My Wife's pregnant

The due date is April 27, and Kate (our daughter) will be 16 months old at that time. Children are indeed a blessing from God for many reasons, humility being one of them. Peggy is experiencing "morning" sickness all day long, and with a 9 month old crawling around, it is difficult, but Peggy is awesome. Her only complaint is that she feels like she isn't going enough around the house. Yea, I want to laugh at that too. She can't keep breakfast, lunch, or dinner down, and she's worried about ironing and cooking. One of the many reasons I love her!

Children are indeed a blessing from God. Someone told me the other day that those that can have children should have several of them. I agree, and hope God continues to bless us in this way. My hope is that we don't ever complain about blessing...


Have you been to my wife's website?

She's selling baby burp cloths and bibs. Very cute and great for baby shower gifts!
Let me know what you think.


My new toy

Testing out my new download of Blogger for MS Word, which is available here. I can now post my blogs directly from Microsoft word. I might actually blog more often now!


Selfishness is a sin

We can pinpoint selfishness in other people very quickly, but can we as easily see it in ourselves. Chances are that the answer is no unless the Spirit so guides us because we are blinded by our own sin.

We do not want to see it and refuse to see it. Thank God for marriage, His spirit, children, and all familial relationships that cause us to see the result of our own selfish desires as they hurt other people. And I thank God that he has been gracious enough in my life to point out my selfishness before it was detrimental to my relationships.

Today, I examine the motives of my desires to determine if my life plans and goals are me focused or God focused as I often claim. Do I love my wife as Christ loved the church, and do my actions manifest this love or suppress it?

O God, create in me a clean, pure heart that I might lead my family in worship of you.


Refreshing Day of Rest

The Lord's day is nice. It is yet another good thing that God has given to us, and it is much appreciated. Although the sleeping is a little more interrupted with a little one around, it is still nice to have a day with no major responsibilities other than worshipping our God.

And worshipping our God we did as a family (soft of). Kate is having issues with the nursery. Or it seems to be more related to the fact that she loves her mommy so much that she doesn't want to leave her. I'm sure we are the first parents ever to experience this with a child (:).

Anyway, as we have our public worship time somewhat interrupted by the needs of our child, we are reminded of the importance of private daily worship that comes from deep gratitude for Christ and His work on the cross. And we experience the joy of our child recognizing and admitting her total dependance on us.

What a great day of worship and rest in our Father!


I think I may have finally mastered the art of picture taking. But of course the term "mastered" is used loosely. It looks like the pictures for the website are acceptable, and I've also found a way to remove the background and still have the pictures look somewhat decent.

I used the free program called GIMP (www.gimp.org) to do this. I've now passed the website creation onto Peggy and her mom because I have other things that need to be completed (preparing for Sunday school is at the top of that list).

This Sunday is on Ephesians 5:22-33. I'm amazed at the number of professed believers in Christ that continually neglect the concept of submission and giving oneself up for another. I know our sin ravaged old man pushes us away from these Biblical characteristics, but the Holy Spirit moves within us to create a love for these things. We must not ignore the Spirit.

Wives must submit, and Husbands must love their wives as Christ loves the church creating a relationship in which it is easy and joyful to submit and love. Our actions cannot and must not depend on the actions of our spouses, if they do, most of us are doomed to fall into the pit of destruction and divorce caused by sin.


Frustration leads to success...Hopefully

Peggy and her mom are going to make some money making burp cloths, bibs, and other items like that. They are setting up a website (with my help), and if they get it up and running, they'll be in full swing. This is a big "IF"!

Have you ever tried taking high quality photographs? It's easy when you are outside and are taking pictures of someone 10 - 15 feet away. When the object is extemely close and inside lighting is being used, the task is not so easy.

Today's frustration will hopefully lead to tomorrow's excitement as I try to tackle this task.

May God bless this work of my hands.


Our new Blog

Today is July 29, 2005, and we finally entered the blogging world. I can't help but wonder if this arena is still growing rapidly or if it is beginning to die. Either way, we'll see if it's as fun as others make it out to be.

Just so you know...this blog is about our family and my hope is to bring praise to our Lord Jesus Christ through the words written here.

Hope you enjoy our ramblings!