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Showing posts from January, 2015

A Yearning to Learn

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During elementary school I was considered one of the smartest students in my class. When I entered junior high, my grades went down because I hated doing homework (although I spent much time reading encyclopedia articles). Still I managed to graduate from high school. Then I took several college courses but never got a degree. Often the classes I liked best were those that provided hands-on training instead of listening to lectures all hour long.
Before answering the call to full-time ministry, a few people suggested I go to Bible school. The Lord told me that wasn’t necessary. I listened to numerous sermon tapes while working temporary jobs and then applied what I learned during street evangelism outings. I also attended various conferences but in recent years cut back on that. Sitting in meeting after meeting does not automatically produce spiritual growth. As James 1:22 says, “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” 
A pastor’s wife I know once had a vi…

In Control

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How many times have you heard the phrase “God is in control”? Songs have been written about that including the like-titled Christian hit by Twila Paris that won a 1995 Dove Award. Another song called “You Are in Control” I heard many times at the Brownsville Revival in Pensacola, Florida. 
Some Christians believe the Lord orchestrates every detail of a person’s life. Calvinists in particular like to quote Romans 8:29-30 which talk about people being “predestined.” It would behoove Calvinists to read the previous verse. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Notice this promise doesn’t apply to everyone but to those who love God.
Man has a free will and can choose to follow his own devices (Jeremiah 18:12). Therefore, he is responsible for his actions and cannot use the old Flip Wilson excuse “the devil made me do it.” Numerous Scriptures talk about self-control. Galatians 5:23 li…

Godly Discrimination

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One sign we’re living in the last days is society’s increasing acceptance of homosexuality. At the time of this writing, 36 American states have legalized same-sex marriage. In response to Florida being the most recent, a Tampa Tribune writer claimed it “should represent no threat to anyone’s personal faith.” Baloney!
In many other places, Christian business owners who stood up against the homosexual agenda have been severely persecuted. One Colorado baker named Jack Phillips was threatened with jail time for refusing to make a wedding cake for a gay couple. Instead of going to a different bakery, the two men filed a lawsuit. A judge ruled Phillips was guilty of “discrimination” and ordered him to make wedding cakes for other same-sex couples who visit his store. He has since stopped making wedding cakes altogether.
One homosexual wrote to me claiming Jesus never discriminated against anyone. Therefore, Christians shouldn’t do that as well. A closer study of Scripture would reveal other…

Excellence Vs. Perfection

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Apple cofounder Steve Jobs once said, “Be the person you want to be. Be the best you can be.” I wouldn’t agree with the first part of that statement. Many individuals try to become someone God never intended them to be. I do agree we should be people of excellence. Ecclesiastes 9:10 says, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might...” 
Before I committed my life to the Lord, I was turned off by things such as “Christian music” that sounded inferior to songs released in the secular market. Anything done in God’s name should be of high quality.One Old Testament prophet certainly demonstrated excellence. “Then this Daniel distinguished himself above the governors and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king gave thought to setting him over the whole realm.” (Daniel 6:3)
On the other hand, one can go the other extreme by being a perfectionist, which is defined as “a person who refuses to accept any standard short of perfection.” As a kid I had many perfe…