Thursday, February 26, 2009

I Have Become Resistant To Change

I have become that which I have so often loathed. I, Craig Thompson, am resistant to change. I really didn't realize it until Tuesday night. Angela and I had talked about the need for Wyatt to go to bed all by himself without Daddy and we both agreed that it was a good idea. Tuesday night was our first experience. We read God's Big Picture Storybook Bible together, he told Mommy, Sissie, and Rowdy (our dog) goodnight (kissing each one individually) and down the hall he and I went. He climbed into bed with his monkey and covered up with his manket (thats how he says blanket). I knelt beside him and we said our prayers (which you should all hear, he is awesome), I kissed him on the head, told him goodnight, and I left. Much to my amazement, he did not come toddling down the hall...he just went to sleep.


It is great that dad does not have to lay down with Wyatt to get him to bed now and it is wonderful that our son is growing and maturing, but I don't have to like it. Seriously, it is tough to see him grow up (he now says AMEN instead of MAYMEN) even when I know it is absolutely what he needs.

I now understand why many in our churches are resistant to change. It's tough to see the things you love change. We love our worship style, or the way the preacher dresses, or that song that reminds me of dear old grandma, and so we resist change. Only, in the church it is somewhat easier that it is with my son. I can't stop him from growing, but a small group of people with a mindset to do so can stop a church from growing.

I don't like Wyatt growing up, but I would appreciate you all being sensitive to my discomfort in this area. Likewise, we must be sensitive to the discomfort of those in the church who are resistant to change. However, just as I must accept the fact that Wyatt is growing and rejoice that God is fulfilling his purpose in my son by maturing him physically, mentally, and spiritually; we as church members must embrace change that results in the fulfillment of God's purpose for his church...the Great Commission.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Obstacles To Evangelism

Click here to see J.D. Greear's five Obstacles to Evangelism from yesterday's evangelism conference.

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Communicate Clearly

So I guess we all hope this is a fake. But, if it isn't, it should at least remind you that there is someone out there who is more gullable than you are. It should also remind us all of the necessity of communicating clearly.
Okay so this is how I imagine this conversation went:
Walmart Employee: 'Hello dis is Walmart, how can I help you?'
Customer: ' I would like to order a cake for a going away party this week.'
Walmart Employee: 'What you want on de cake?'
Customer: 'Best Wishes Suzanne' and underneath that 'We will miss you'.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Pope To Pelosi: Protect Human Life

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi met Pope Benedict XVI at the Vatican Wednesday morning, but may not have had a meeting of the minds if the two statements from their offices are any indication.

No journalists were at the 15-minute encounter and the Vatican and the speaker's offices have not released any photos. However, according to their statements it appears the pope and the politician attended two different get-togethers.

"His Holiness took the opportunity to speak of the requirements of the natural moral law and the Church's consistent teaching on the dignity of human life from conception to natural death which enjoins all Catholics, and especially legislators, jurists and those responsible for the common good of society, to work in cooperation with all men and women of good will in creating a just system of laws capable of protecting human life at all stages of its development," the Vatican wrote, having released the statement moments before the two met.

Several hours later, Pelosi's office gave her take on the tete-a-tete.

"It is with great joy that my husband, Paul, and I met with his Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI today," Pelosi said in a statement released hours after the meeting. "In our conversation, I had the opportunity to praise the Church's leadership in fighting poverty, hunger and global warming, as well as the Holy Father's dedication to religious freedom and his upcoming trip and message to Israel. I was proud to show his Holiness a photograph of my family's papal visit in the 1950s, as well as a recent picture of our children and grandchildren."

The pontiff has a long history of urging Catholic politicians to toe the line on abortion, and has said that those who don't shouldn't take communion. Pelosi supports abortion rights and says she's never been denied communion at her church in San Francisco.

In 2002, the Vatican issued a doctrinal note on "The Participation of Catholics in Political Life," which states rather succinctly that politicians who profess to be Catholic have a "grave and clear obligation" to oppose any law that attacks human life.

That note was approved by John Paul II but signed by none other than Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. He's now the pope.

The speaker does not share that belief, and even got into a verbal slugfest with American bishops last August after her statements on a news program about the Church's view of when life begins.

"I would say that as an ardent, practicing Catholic, this is an issue that I have studied for a long time. And what I know is, over the centuries, the doctors of the church have not been able to make that definition. And St. Augustine said at three months, we don't know. The point is, is that it shouldn't have an impact on the woman's right to choose," she said at the time on NBC's "Meet the Press."

She then added that the Church has only held the view for 50 years or so that life begins at conception. The remarks earned her widespread corrections by Catholic clerics.

FOX News' Greg Burke contributed to this report.

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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Britain Outlaws Man For Hate Speech

FoxNews is reporting that Dutch politician Geert Wilders has been banned from Britain because of his movie against Islam that calls the Koran a "fascist" book and the Islamic religion violent. This is a huge blow against free speech in Britain.

Britain's Home Office would not comment specifically on the ban, but it said it "opposes extremism in all its forms" and would work to "stop those who want to spread extremism, hatred and violent messages in our communities from coming to our country."

I post this tidbit primarily to point out that in Britain, there is an open anti-Christian campaign, promoted especially by the Atheist community. It would seem that the most important thing for the British parliament is not to oppose extremism, since they do allow sharia law to reign in some areas, but rather to protect the rights of Islam above all else. Just something to think about. Let me know what you think.
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Wednesday, February 11, 2009

What Message Is Your Child's Cell Phone Sending?

What message is your child's cell phone sending? At 8:30 on Wednesday morning, for many of you reading this, my guess is as good as yours. Innocently they could be exchanging homework assignments or they could be engaging in something much more sinister. Many examples abound in recent news of teens and tweens who's picture messages have revealed more than a bad hair day.

Regardless of what messages they are sending today, what messages are you sending to them? Russell Moore of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary has posted a great article about pre-teens and cell-phone use. As parents who take the protection of their children seriously you can hardly avoid reading this straight to the point article. You may not like his conclusions, but it should at least prompt you to think about your decision as to whether or not your children need their own cell-phone. Read Dr. Moore's article, Does Your Child's Cell Phone Preach Another Gospel? and let me know what you think. I'm anxious to know if parents agree or disagree.

Let me go on record as saying that I believe Dr. Moore is spot on with this argument.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Christless Christianity

A couple of weeks ago I posted an article based on some information gleaned from my reading of Christless Christianity by Michael Horton. After having completed it, I believe it is one of the best books I will read all year and would encourage any Christian interested in growing in their faith to read it and take it in. I have written a review for the book that can be found here.

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Thursday, February 05, 2009

To The Husbands

Yesterday we posted for we post for husbands. Because too many men do not read (and shame on you), I've posted two video clips from Mark Driscoll for your viewing pleasure (and or conviction). Husbands, you need to pay attention because when your wife sees this, her expectations of you may change, but who could blame her?

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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

How Servant Wives Show Leadership in the Home

What does a godly marriage look like? According to the Bible, it is a marriage characterized by God-directed male leadership and God-directed servanthood from the wife. So, men you should lead your wives to make them all that they can be in God's plan. Wives, however, you too can serve your husbands in such a way that you make them more than they would have ever been on their own. I'd like to illustrate this with some quotes this morning. One from the Bible, one from Spurgeon, and one from, of all people, Stephen King.

What a blessing is a good wife! you women, who would lnot be in your right place if you began to preach in the streets, you can make your husbands happy and comfortable when they come home, and that will make them preach all the better! Some of you can even help in another way if you are prudent and gentle. You can tenderly hint that your spouse was a little out of line in certain small matters, and he may take your hint, and put himself right.
- C.H. Spurgeon, The Soul Winner

My wife made a crucial difference during those two years I spent teaching at Hampden (and waching sheets at New Franklin Laundry during the summer vacation). If she had suggested that the time I spent writing stories on the front porch of our rented house on Pond Street or in the laundry room of our rented trailer on Klatt Road in Hermon was wasted time, I think a lot of the heart would have gone out of me. Tabby never voiced a single doubt, however. Her support was a constant, one of the few good things I could take as a given. And whenever I see a first novel dedicated to a wife (or a husband), I smile and think, there's someone who knows. Writing is a lonely job. Having someone who believes in you makes a lot of difference. They don't have to make speeches. Just believing is usually enough.
- Stephen King, On Writing

Likewise, wives, be subject to your own husbands, so that even if some do not obey the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives--when they see your respectful and pure conduct. Do not let your adorning be external--the braiding of hair, the wearing of gold, or the putting on of clothint--but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the
imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious.

- 1 Peter 3:1-4

Ladies, you of all people can lead your husbands to greater things. It may be to success in winning souls, to success in careers, or even to faith in God, but it will be done with a gentle and supportive spirit. Whether you know it or not, you husband needs and craves your attention and your admiration. Husbands need to know that their wives beleive in them.

Wives, support your husbands verbally, actively, and publicly. Whether you know it or not, your admiration is more important than all of the accolades the world can provide.

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