Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Real Marriage

Have you ever wanted the truth about sex, friendship, and life together when it comes to marriage?  That’s exactly what Mark and Grace Driscoll’s new book Real Marriage is claiming to offer.

I have to say up front that I like Mark Driscoll’s doctrine and methodology a lot, not in relation to this book per se, but just in general, and so when the publisher offered this book for review, I jumped on it. 

Overall, I think the book is a great read for those Christians who are single wanting to get married, already married, or who’s marriage is in deep trouble.  The book condenses several Christian marriage books into one read, pulling out the relevant biblical insights and skimming off the fat.  I’ve read a few of these books, and so I recognized a lot of the names they threw out.  Even Andy Stanley recommends the book, and according to a lot of my Christian friends, that’s a big deal, though I only have a vague idea of who Andy Stanley is.

All that said, Real Marriage is a good Cliff Notes approach to a variety of thoughts on Christian marriage while working in individual stories about Mark and Grace.

However, the problems with Cliff Notes is that you lose a lot of the depth of thought you would have seen had you read the original, and I felt that way a lot throughout the book.  For example when it comes to Christian marriage books, I think there are two must reads: Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas and Love and Respect by Emerson Eggerichs.  The Driscolls talk about both of these books and some of the most important parts you’ll find in them but much of the power is drained without the originals’ wording and insight.

However, I still think as an overview of Christian marriage, Real Marriage has real value.

But then there’s the part that sets Real Marriage apart from every other Christian marriage book out there: the sex appendix, which answers some probing (forgive the pun) questions that they've been asked over the years on what’s Biblically appropriate when it comes to sex and sexual positions in marriage.  This part was fairly graphic, and while I kind of understand the need for it in today’s porn saturated culture, my imagination was much too vivid to read all the way through it.

It’s the sex appendix that ultimately leads me to not recommend this book.  Not because there isn’t sound Biblical teaching in it, but because the final few pages of the book are like reading the Kama Sutra.  

People can call it educational all they want, but that doesn’t mean it can’t act as a stumbling block just as much as sitting down in front of a porno on the computer.  For that matter, I wouldn't know what the things they talk about were if I had not looked at pornography before coming to Christ.  And that being the case, I can't help but wonder how those asking the questions know what to ask about, and why they want to use their spouse to fulfill those fantasies?

I think the Driscolls’ intentions were good, but it went a little beyond where it needed to in order to have a Christ-centered marriage.

But if you don't believe me, you can buy a copy for $14.94

I received a free copy from the publisher for review.  All opinions are my own.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

What Is The Trinity?

You may have noticed that I missed last week’s Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday posts.  Our church was having revival services all week and my time usually spent writing for the blog was spent listening to a fiery old evangelist and rejoicing with heaven as people were getting saved.  I don’t regret missing my articles one bit.

Anyway, last time in Matthew Mondays, we looked at why Jesus was baptized.  This week we’re going to look at what happens at the baptism:

“As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." (Matthew 3:16-17).

This is one of those rare moments in the Bible where we see all three members of the Trinity in action: the Son is being baptized, the Spirit is resting on Him, and the Father is speaking from heaven.  What a beautiful, powerful moment this is.

This begs the question what exactly is the Trinity? 

Now, there have been millions maybe billions of Christians before me who have asked this question, and I make no claim as being definitive here, but I’ll do my best to relate my understanding of what the Trinity is.

If we want to know what God looks like, the first place to look is in a mirror, not that we are gods by any means, but that we were made in His image.  He made us to look like Him.  If His image is Trinitarian, then ours probably is as well.  There’s this verse in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 that says, “May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

And so we have what looks like a trinity of man: body, soul, and spirit.

The body is the physical being, the soul is the mind, will and emotions, and the spirit is the power of life, which was extinguished after Adam’s fall, but reignited by the sacrifice and resurrection of Christ and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit: three separate parts but one.

What if the Trinity of God looks like this as well: the body in Christ, the spirit in the Holy Spirit, and the soul in the Father: three separate parts but One?  

Friday, February 24, 2012

Strength in Silence

Men are generally known for controlling their emotions.  We don’t cry much.  We don’t get giddy much.  And when we get upset, we generally stop talking, stop responding, and shut down.  In our feminist culture these aspects of men are seen as huge weaknesses. 

Why can’t men be more open about their feelings? 

If you’re a woman in a relationship with a man, you’ve probably asked that question, and if you’re a man in a relationship with a woman, you’ve probably been asked that question.

But here’s the thing.  A man who is in control of his emotions is a good thing.  Read this week's Proverbs and Wisdom to find out why . . . Strength in Silence

Friday, February 17, 2012

God's Sorrow

For some reason we often get this idea that God is this stoic, unemotional being, or if we do concede Him some emotions, we think of Him as angry and vengeful or loving and joyful, but what about pained and sorrowful?

Perhaps the most striking example of God’s sorrow can be seen during the time of Noah:  “The LORD saw how great man's wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain.” (Genesis 6:5-6)

“Grief” isn’t a word we use much these days, but the definition for it is “to feel intense sorrow as in when a loved one dies.”   Read the rest of the article in today's Proverbs and Wisdom.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Working Online

I have tried to keep this blog grounded in the Christian faith, but even Christians know how to have fun, and in that spirit, I've decided to post something fun today.  I've seen a lot of these "What I Really Do" pictures popping up all over the place, and this is one I made for those of us who work online.


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Does God Know You?

Last week in the Relationship Tuesday series, we talked about the difference between Knowing About God and Knowing God.  This week we’re going to talk about God knowing us.  That is after all part of a relationship right?  Both parties know each other.

When I use the word “know” here, I’m not talking about know as in the omniscient way He knows everything.  I’m talking about a more intimate knowledge, a familiarity or a relational knowledge, if you will.

In Matthew 7:20-23 Jesus says, “"Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'

Clearly there are those who think they know Jesus, that do amazing works in His name, I dare say more than most of us have done, but who do not have a relationship with Him.  They think they know Him, but when they claim to know Him on Judgment day, He doesn’t recognize them as His own.

It’s like knowing about Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.  You can read all the tabloids, see all their movies, join their fan clubs, follow them on Twitter, even get your hair cut to look just like them, but if you were to show up on their doorstep claiming to know them, you’d be promptly dragged away by their body guards, turned over to the police and imprisoned for harassment.

And I don’t choose my analogy lightly.  These Hollywood icons are in many ways defining what relationships should look like whether that’s civil, friendship, marriage, or even family, and a lot of those ideas are superimposed on our relationship with God. 

Now, scripture does use a lot of earthly metaphors to describe our relationship with God such as Father, brother, bridegroom, friend, king, etc., but too often our ideas about these metaphors are informed by the imperfect rather than by the perfect—God Himself.  Our relationship with God as Father for instance is different than our relationship with our earthly father, and it’s far different than the fatherly relationships portrayed in movies.

All that to say, we ought not treat God as we would treat any old relationship, and we certainly ought not imagine that our knowledge about Him and scripture, our good deeds done in His name, or even seeing miracles happen in His name are the same as knowing Him or even more crazy that these things mean He ought to know us.

But how do we know that God knows us?  Jesus says He doesn’t know those who practice lawlessness.  What’s lawlessness?  Jesus also says that all the law and the prophets rest on two commandments: Love the LORD your God with all your heart, soul, and strength and love your neighbor as yourself. (Matthew 22:37-40).  If you love God with everything and love others, you’re not lawless.

Paul spells it out in very simple terms: “If anyone loves God, then he is known by Him” (1 Corinthians 8:3). 

Our quest isn’t to learn about God, so we gain a lot of knowledge: head or heart knowledge for those who speak Christianese.  Our quest is to love God with everything we’ve got regardless if we understand Him or His ways because we’ll never really understand the infinite, unfathomable God, but we can know Him, and if we love Him, we can be known by Him.

Next Week: The Fear of the Lord

Monday, February 13, 2012

Why Was Jesus Baptized?

It’s Matthew Monday, and we’re looking at Matthew chapter 3 today.

The big thing that happens in Matthew chapter 3 is that Jesus is baptized by John the Baptist.

Now John has been out baptizing people, preaching “repent for the kingdom of God is at hand.”  There were a couple of reasons why people are baptized in terms of Jewish culture in those days: the first was for conversion to Judaism, the second was for Milkveh or purification.  The Essenes who lived in the wilderness near John baptized for renewal or a return to a pure Jewish faith without the Roman appointed high priest, and it’s suggested that John picked up his message and reason for baptizing from them.

Whatever the case, baptism was meant for purification purposes, whether into a purer religion or just general purification from becoming unclean by transgressing the law. 

The question that comes up here for me is “why did Jesus have to be baptized?”

I mean Jesus was without sin (Hebrews 4:15).  When He touched unclean people, He didn’t become unclean, He cleaned them (Matthew 8:1-4).   The man was perfect religion; He didn’t need to convert.  Why in the world would He need to be baptized?

Jesus says, “it’s to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15), but what does that mean?

There are quite a few thoughts on the why.  Maybe Jesus was fulfilling the ministry of John (John 1:32).  Maybe He was identifying with us as sinners and setting the precedence for baptism (Romans 6).  Maybe He was emulating the crossing of the Jordan as He fulfilled and redeemed Israel’s history (Joshua 3:14).  And all of these may be true.

I think the reason has to do with John’s lineage.  His parents were both descendants of Aaron (Luke 1:5).  His father learns of John’s conception while in the temple performing his priestly duties burning incense (Luke 1:8-20).  What this means is that John was a priest.  He grew up with a father who was a Levite, who served in the temple.  He would have learned the trade of being a priest.  He would have been educated profusely in the Law and the Old Testament, and He should have served in the temple when it was his family’s time to serve.

Instead John was out baptizing people in a dirty river just so that Jesus would come to him one day and be baptized. 

In light of this I think the best explanation for Jesus’ baptism is found in Hebrews 4:13-5:10, which I won’t reprint here, but I encourage you to read.  It talks about Jesus being our high priest who offers atonement for our sin.  In the Old Testament the high priest was “baptized” before entering office (Exodus 29:4), and I think that’s what we’re seeing the baptism of Christ: a christening into the office of high priest, an act that is approved by God Himself when He speaks from heaven and anoints Jesus with the Holy Spirit, something we’ll look at more next week.

Practically in our lives, Jesus fulfilling righteousness in being baptized by a priest, so He might be our high priest is summed up in 1 John 1:9-10 and 2:1: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us. My little children I am writing these things so that you may not sin, but if anyone sins, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” 

If you fall short, and we all do.  Confess and repent and be cleansed by the propitiation for our sins, our Lord Jesus Christ.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Not John Piper

My wife and I used to do devotions on a daily basis, and while we still talk about God a lot, pretty much all day, we haven’t had the discipline of a daily devotion together for awhile now.

While searching for a devotional to do together, I came across Mornings With Jesus. Guideposts was gracious enough to send me a copy through Litfuse, and I just finished going through it to see if it would be a good fit for us.

My overall review is that it’s a pretty good devotional.  It’s not deep theologically, but it is deep relationally in terms of our relationship with Christ, which is eternally more important.  Jesus is perfect theology, so if you want to know great theology, you have to know Him right? 

It’s also written by and geared toward women more then men, but I think it will do just fine for a devotional for a couple as well.  Part of being the spiritual leader of a household, fellas, is having some empathy for our wives. 

I remember the first time my wife asked if we could read a Christian book together at bed time, meaning I would read out loud to her, I said “sure, I’ve got just the thing.”  I pulled John Piper’s The Pleasures of God off the shelf and started reading. She was asleep in seconds, but I kept prodding her and saying, “Ooo this part’s really good!”  She finally said, “I don’t want a theological treatise before bed.  Can we read something lighter?”

Since then, we’ve gone through a few books together, and we’ll probably go through Mornings with Jesus as our devotional.

See what other bloggers are saying at Litfuse.

From the Publisher:

"Be still and know that I am God” is one of the most beautiful verses from the Bible, but it’s not easy to practice in this busy world. Mornings with Jesus will help you do just that, be still in Jesus’ beautiful and powerful presence. For those who are seeking a deeper experience in their relationship with Christ, Mornings with Jesus offers a fresh perspective of who Jesus is (the Healer, the Son of God, the Comforter, the Good Shepherd) and what that means for day-to-day life.

With a warm and friendly voice, 365 short devotional writings on the character and teachings of Jesus encourage readers to greet each day by drawing near to Him and inviting His presence into their day. Spend time with Jesus at the beginning of each day and experience His nearness and peace in a new way throughout the year. Each day’s selection includes: a Bible verse; an entry based on Jesus: His words, miracles, and parables; His wisdom, compassion, and comfort; His mystery, power, divinity, and humanity; and a faith step that will inspire and challenge readers to apply the day’s message to their lives.

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Beauty of a Broken Heart

When we hear the words “broken heart,” we often think of a relationship that’s been broken, and it’s usually in reference to the person who’s been wronged in the relationship.  For example if a husband cheats on his wife, it’s the wife’s heart that is broken, not the other way around.  But what if the offender’s heart broke instead?

When David sinned with Bathsheba, he penned one of the most heart-wrenching Psalms in the Bible. 

Psalm 51 is a desperate cry for forgiveness, not to Bathsheba’s father Eliam, who was one of David’s mighty men who spent years living in a cave; nor to Uriah the Hittite’s family, another might man who lived with David for years and had been given a house near the castle; nor to the other mighty men, David’s friends who were surely shocked to learn David had their mutual friend Uriah killed; but David desperately pleaded for forgiveness from God.

Read the rest of the article in today's Proverbs and Wisdom.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Four Letter Words

When we use the phrase four-letter words, we’re often referring to some kind of vulgarity, and it’s this reference that Bill Giovannetti uses to frame an apologetic response to some of the usual atheistic arguments the would-be evangelist will encounter in today’s world in that conservative Christian beliefs have become four-letter words in our culture.

Giovannetti writes enjoyable prose, alternating between humor and playing the reader’s heart strings, which is a welcomed break from most apologists' styles when dealing with such dry material.  He uses a lot of personal stories about sharing his faith with friends, love, loss, and embarrassment that pull apologetics out the theoretical realm of philosophy and plant it squarely in the practical, and being a practical person I appreciate that a lot.

There’s lots of scripture and lots of recommendations to pray with whoever you’re talking to about whatever the topic of discussion is, which I also appreciate a lot.  And the author even takes on the topic of sex in the Wait chapter, which most Christians tend to avoid talking about in detail because of “modesty” issues, which to an atheist really just looks like you don’t know anything about it or you’re a fuddy-duddy, when in reality we have some of the best guides to healthy sex in scripture.  Take a lap around Song of Solomon and see what I mean.

Being a techie, I really like that the book is QR enabled.  I tested out a few of the QR codes, and most of them seem to take you to the Four Letter Words website; where you’ll find articles, links, and videos for further study on the topics that Giovannetti is presenting.

Now, if I were looking for a drawback to the book, it would be the same drawback I’ve seen with most apologetics books, and that’s the focus on knowledge and logic over God when it comes to a changed heart.  Most apologists would be quick to profess that they know lives and hearts are only changed by the power of God, but I’ve honestly never seen an apologist's book that just comes out and says it: point blank.  Giovannetti alluded to the idea more than most, but again he is focused more on the acquiring of information and good debating skills rather than prayer, hearing God’s voice, and being led by the Spirit—which are all given higher priorities than studying, at least in terms of the amount of scripture related to them versus studying to show ourselves approved.

I’m not saying I don’t think apologetics is important and useful.  I love these kinds of books, and I especially love Four Letter Words, it was fun and informative, and I recommend it highly.  However without the power of Christ and the conviction of the Holy Spirit present in evangelism, apologetics is a fairly powerless witness.  Take it from a former atheist.  If your opponent has spent any amount of time on the Internet, he/she will have answers to your questions and responses to your claims.  But when God is involved, it comes down to “will I repent” or “won’t I”.  There aren’t any good arguments for the power of God.

I received this book in exchange for my honest opinion and review from Litfuse Blog Tour and Endurant Press.  See what others on the tour are saying about Four Letter Words here.

From the Publisher

About Four Letter Words: 

Thou shalt tolerate every opinion... except the Christian's. Today's postmodern "prime directive" leaves many followers of Jesus tongue-tied. In the global village, isn't it unreasonable, and even dangerous, to suggest that the Bible has a monopoly on truth? 

The church needs a new breed of Christ-follower. We need Christ-followers who are alert to today's touchy ideas, the truths that fire up more heat than light. We need Christ-followers who can make a clear case for the Bible's worldview; who are ready to help our friends think through their beliefs; who can recognize inconsistencies and challenge them; and who can do all of this with humility, confidence, humor, and love. For more information visit .  

About Bill Giovannetti: 

Dr. Bill Giovannetti is a professor at A.W. Tozer Theological  Seminary and the senior pastor of Neighborhood Church of Redding. An experienced speaker and author, Bill informs the mind in ways that touch the heart. He enjoys life with his wife and two kids in northern California. For more information about Bill and his other books, visit  and . 

Author Giveaway:

Bill is celebrating the new Kindle edition of Four Letter Words (for only $4.99)! He’ll be traveling coast to coast over the next few weeks on this virtual book tour and he's celebrating by hosting a great giveaway! 

Click here ( ) to find out how you can win two gift certificates to Amazon (in the amount of $50 and $25) and free downloads of his yet-to-be-released title, Recession-Proof: Living a God-Blessed Life in a Messed Up World. 

The whole scoop here: /    

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Knowing About God Vs. Knowing God

Welcome to Week 2 of Relationship Tuesdays, where we’re looking at how God defines the relationship we have with Him. 

When I started my Christian walk, the first book of the Bible I read was Job.  What a place to start right?  But let’s look at his story in the context of knowing about God vs. knowing God.

When praising Job before Satan, God says this about Job, “Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil."

Job is the most righteous man alive at the time; there is no one like him on the Earth.  I think most of us know the story from this point forward.  Satan says that if God lowered His protection of Job, Job would curse God and die.  God basically says, “take your best shot, but don’t kill him.”  And for the rest of the book we read about Job’s unparalleled misery.  We don’t know how long Job suffered, but we know his friends came and stayed with him for a week before they even talked, which must have been uncomfortable, especially since they broke the silence with all kinds of accusations about how Job must have sinned. 

And through it all, Job remains faithful though he does question God a lot.  And at the end God shows up and speaks to Job.  You’d think it would be words of comfort or encouragement, but God basically says, “Who are you to question me?  I’m God.” 

Job’s response is what really struck me as a new Christian, and even now it reminds me what this Christian walk is all about:

“I know that You can do all things, And that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted. 'Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?' "Therefore I have declared that which I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know." 'Hear, now, and I will speak; I will ask You, and You instruct me.'

I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear; But now my eye sees You; Therefore I retract, And I repent in dust and ashes."

Job, the most righteous man on earth, says, “until now I have only heard of You.  I’ve only known about You.”  And if you read the things Job says about God, his knowledge is on par with any seminarian or pastor you’ll ever meet.  “But now I’ve seen you, and I take it all back.  I was talking about things I didn’t understand, and I repent in dust in ashes.” 

Before I found Jesus, I had taught a class on the Bible as literature, wrote a thesis on St. Augustine and some of the early church fathers, and read the Bible cover to cover several times.  I used to debate with Christians all the time and much like Satan in the wilderness with Jesus, I’d use scripture against them.  But when I met Christ, I realized I didn’t know anything, and even now in the presence of His holiness, I’m an ignorant fool. 

There is no knowledge you’ll ever accumulate on earth that will compare to seeing God.

In 1 Corinthians 8:1-3 Paul says, “Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies. If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know; but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him.”

Next Week: Does God Know You?

Monday, February 6, 2012

God's Telling Our Story

Welcome to Matthew Mondays Part 2.  There’s a lot that could be said about Matthew Chapter 2 and the birth of Jesus Christ, but let’s start with a contemplation:

Have you ever thought about Jesus’ conception?  I mean never mind that Mary’s a teenage virgin, consider for a moment that the infinite God mashed His essence into one cell inside of that teenage virgin, and she didn’t explode!  How crazy is that? 

I’m going to just let you think about that for awhile for two reasons: first two millennium have been spent trying to understand the whole fully God, fully man thing, and secondly I have nothing new to offer.  I’m as amazed and confused by the whole thing as anyone else.  What a powerful and humble God we serve!

So then, since there's no good way to transition from the awe of the incarnation, let's just jump right in; shall we?  When we look at chapter 2, the story of Jesus’ birth in Matthew’s Gospel is as significant in what he leaves out as what he chooses to include. 

Matthew doesn’t mention the census, the manger, the shepherds, the dedication at the temple, or Anna and Simeon.  Instead Matthew’s main focus is to show that Jesus is a descendant of David and heir to the crown, and he does it with the story of the Magi.

The Magi ask, “where is he who is born king of the Jews?” This brings up an important point.  Herod is not the true king of Israel.  Herod was not a descendant of David. He was an Edomite (a descendant of Esau) that the Roman government had set in place: a puppet king.  He had converted to Judaism for the sake of ruling Judah, but he was not of the kingly lineage. 

And he was aware, as was all of Jerusalem, that there was a descendant of David out there.  The Jewish people kept copious records of genealogy at the temple, many of which were destroyed by Rome in 70 A.D. 

Who was that descendant?

Now you’d be tempted to jump and say, “Jesus”, and while you’re not wrong, let’s not forget the genealogy in chapter one.  Joseph, as a son of David and a direct descendant of the kingly line, had a legitimate claim to the throne, and there would have been record on hand to prove it.  Thus his son, Jesus, would have record on hand to prove it.   In fact Jewish scholars from antiquity back up Joseph and Mary’s lineage, though they do so while denying Christ.

The fact that Joseph was a carpenter and not the king shows the situation Israel found itself in during Jesus’ birth.  It was occupied.  Its rulers were appointed by and subservient to Rome.   But the Jewish people were ready to revolt, and if they had a king, a descendant of David, they would have at the drop of a hat.  In fact, all through the Gospels the disciples are itching for war and missing the point of Jesus’ incarnation, which we’ll see in later chapters. 

So, when the Magi show up spouting off about a king, the king of the Jews.  Herod is understandably put on edge, which leads to the child killing and all that.

I guess the part that I find intriguing about the whole scenario is that God picks this point in history to send the Messiah: the One who will free His people from their sins.  This point where the Jewish people are not only figuratively captive in their sin, they’re literally captive, occupied by a foreign power.  And after all the cycles of blessing and cursing, plenty and little, freedom and captivity, God picks this point to send the One to end the cycle, first for the Jew and then the Gentile.

And He does it humbly in the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, so that we might once and all be free from sin, so the King of kings and Lord of lords would not just be the literal king of the Jews who overthrew an earthly oppressor, but the King of all, who took the keys to hell and death, who set us free from ourselves, and who will reign forever and ever.

Could the timing have been better?  I don’t think so.  God is an amazing storyteller, and I can tell you this much, He’s telling your story right now.  The more you listen to the storyteller, the more you’ll get out of this life.

Friday, February 3, 2012

When God Sings Over You

I had an amazing revelation about God and that verse in Zephaniah that says, “The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing” in choir practice last night, but it requires some explanation of how I found myself in the choir in the first place, so this post is going to be a little longer than my usual. 

The story starts with my wife:

I remember the first time I heard my wife sing, long before I had ever even considered dating, much less marrying her.  I was friends with her brother and was visiting with him when this amazing soprano voice and piano accompaniment filled the house.  I remember rolling my eyes and saying, “does your sister have to play her CDs so loud?” 

He smiled with some pride in his eyes and replied, “That’s her.  She’s singing.”

I stopped complaining and listened in awe.

But then my wife got sick . . . Read the rest of the article on today's Proverbs and Wisdom.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Gathering (Design Post)

Our church has a college group, The Gathering, that is most likely going to expand into a college church plant in the coming weeks, which is very exciting.  I've had the opportunity to start making some posters and handouts for them, as well as to start thinking about and being part of the "branding" process, though I hesitate to incorporate a blatantly business term like that for a church, but it is what it is I guess.

At any rate, I'm posting a couple of posters today in my attempt to keep the blog alive while still maintaining all the ministry commitments I've made.

The first one is just a general informational poster (the logo is a vectorized version of work originally done by Ben Cabe - credit where credit is due), and the second poster is an announcement poster for their Super Bowl party.  They're both done in vectors, so they can be shrank to handout size too.  All vectors were drawn from scratch, which takes forever, but it's worth it.

The Posters:

For the record, I'm willing to do artwork/design/web/videos for other ministries, but because of the time involved in the process, some kind of pay is required.  You can use the contact form if you're interested.  I'm willing to work within your budget for the sake of the kingdom, as long as you're willing to work within my time constraints.  Visit my website at


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