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Showing posts from June, 2013

on sabbatical

"For six years you shall sow your field, and for six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its fruits, but in the seventh year there shall be a Sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a Sabbath to the LORD. You shall not sow your field or prune your vineyard."  (Leviticus 25:3-4 ESV) After twelve years of full-time ministry at our church I am taking a sabbatical for two months.  So, what is a pastoral sabbatical?  And why would a full-time minister need a sabbatical? More importantly, why doesn't everyone get to take a sabbatical? (I don't have a good answer for that last question, sorry.) A sabbatical is a season of rest.  On the seventh day of creation, God ceased, or completed, his work of creation (Gen 2:2, 3).  This, of course, was not a complete cessation of all activity on his part (John 5:16-17). Since he is Creator, and not a creature, he doesn't have limitations, and hence no real need to rest. He did this as an example for us, as he move

Heidelberg on the Lord's prayer

Th e Heidelberg Catechism (1563) on the Lord’s Prayer petitions ... 120. Why did Christ command us to address God thus: “Our Father?” To awaken in us at the very beginning of our prayer that childlike reverence for and trust in God, which are to be the ground of our prayer, namely, that God has become our Father through Christ, and will much less deny us what we ask of Him in faith than our parents refuse us earthly things.[1] [1]Mt. 7:9-11; Lk. 11:11-13; *I Pet. 1:17; *Isa. 63:16. 121. Why is it added: “Who art in heaven?” That we might have no earthly thought of the heavenly majesty of God,[1] and from His almighty power expect all things necessary for body and soul.[2] [1]Jer. 23:23-24; Acts 17:24-25, 27. [2]Rom. 10:12; *I Kgs. 8:28; *Ps. 115:3. 122. What is the first petition? “Hallowed be Thy name;” that is, grant us, first, rightly to know Thee, [1] and to hallow, magnify, and praise Thee in all Thy works, in which Thy power, goodness, justice, mercy, and tr

before leaving home

In " 40 Things Every Child Must Know Before Leaving Home " Ann Voskamp writes to her 16-year-old son as he prepares to leave for a mission trip in Indonesia.  Very moving.   Here's an excerpt:   The Bible’s true, son. Every infallible, sword-sharp, breathing word of it. Don’t let anyone ever rationalize one beautiful iota of it away. Love it because it’s your Life. Be the kind of person who apologizes first because that’s the only way happiness can last. And never forget that happiness is when His Word and your walk are in harmony. Never stop keeping company with Christ– and all the sinners, tax-collectors and cast-offs. Be an evangelist and use your words with your hands because your part of a Body and never stop loving God with all your heart, mind and soul, and loving others as yourself. Make that your creed. It’s true, son: Be different and know everything you do matters. It’s what the Christ followers know: One man with God can change a culture. God

on aging

A few quotes on the lighter side of growing older ... "When your friends begin to flatter you on how young you look, it's a sure sign you're getting old."  (Mark Twain) "Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of eighty and gradually approach eighteen."  (Mark Twain) "The trick is growing up without growing old."  (Casey Stengel) "In youth we run into difficulties. In old age difficulties run into us." (Beverly Sills)  "You can only be young once. But you can always be immature.” (Dave Barry) "Your hand and your mouth agreed many years ago that, as far as chocolate is concerned, there is no need to involve your brain.”  (Dave Barry) “It is a scientific fact that your body will not absorb cholesterol if you take it from someone else's plate.”   (Dave Barry) "The simple truth is that balding African-American men look cool when they shave t

some favorite dog cartoons