Thursday, July 21, 2016

A Troubadourian Supplication

"May we all get to heaven before 
the devil knows we're dead."
The Turnpike Troubadours, from their song Before the Devil Knows We're Dead, from their album Goodbye Normal Street

Sunday, July 17, 2016

"I Know What I Am"

I like old country music, and Texas/Outlaw Country in particular. I find a connection with these folks that I have not found in the Church - pain. We in the Church tend to fearfully cover that, or pretentiously advertise it. Life in a fallen world hurts. The Bible says so, repeatedly. I know it to be true. So I connect with the stories told by the old country song writers. Seems real to me. And I need real.

Yesterday evening I heard this, and commend it to you. It's not the typical story put to song by an old-time country music singer. It's better. And while Kristofferson theology is a bit sketchy, the testimony given is worth a listen, I think. Enjoy.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Sunday Post for Shepherds - Pauline Preaching

"I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling, and my message and my preaching were not in persuasive words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith would not rest on the wisdom of men, but on the power of God."
 The Apostle Paul, 1 Co 2:3-5

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Trained and Untrained - Part 2

"There's no tough," is a part of Creasy's framework for high performance. In other words, there is no substitute for training. We do this, don't we. We are unwilling to do a hard thing the right way so we offer substitutes that come easier to us, even to our own precious children. A list of examples of such useless offerings is next to limitless. And if our parents related this way to us we are even more prone to relate this way to our children. Did you have regular meaningful conversations with your parents about the most important realities, like God, for example? If you didn't, raising your children in the good way will probably be much more difficult for you, sometimes seeming impossible. I have no memory of such a conversation with my father. I do have memories of substitute offerings. I have been largely untrained, and it has cost me and my family; because relating rightly to our children is not a natural skill, but a learned one. I am thankful to be able to see the problem. Overcoming it is the ongoing challenge.

Faithful biblical parenting is demanding, but it is not terribly complicated. It has to do with being a Godward helpful influence through modeling, yes, but in a large way also through conversation. We see this in some of the Scripture's earliest descriptions of the way believing parents are to operate, such as in the early chapters of Deuteronomy where we are told to take every opportunity to be in conversation with our children. We see it in the Proverbs, many of which are presented as a father speaking with his son (beginning with 1:8 and continuing from there). The Apostle Paul uses this format to instruct and counsel his "son in the faith," young Timothy (Cf 1 Ti 1:18 & 2 Ti 2:1, etc). This is the model -- a Godward parent in helpful verbal communication with his or her children.

Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren, especially concerning the day you stood before the LORD your God in Horeb, when the LORD said to me, "Gather the people to Me, and I will let them hear My words, that they may learn to fear me all the days they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children." 
Dt 4:9-10