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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Wheres God?

So last week we began to ask the question where is God when things are difficult and where is God when things are stressful. My challenge to you was to continue to ask yourself this question as we spend some time studying the book of Daniel.
Just as a reminder Daniel was taken captive by the Babylonians and placed in Nebuchadnezzar's accelerated reprogramming classes. Daniel and some of his buddies not only got free room and board but they also got free college, food and drink from the kings table and I'd imagine some other benefits. We read in chapter one that the best looking and royalty were taken first and the population was already watching these folks so its a no brainer that if you can reprogram them to your way of thinking you will quickly reach the multitude. We also see that the Chief of the officials changed the names of Daniel and his friends from names that reflect the true God, to names that reflected the pagan gods the Babylonians worshipped.
Now I'm no genius but if someone uprooted me from everything that is comfortable and familiar, changed my name and tried to teach me a new religion, I'd be a bit of a basket case. My identity, my normal ways of functioning, my sanity, all out the window.
But the question is, "Where is God?", and why did He allow this to happen?
The world would say either He doesn't exist or that He is not powerful enough to stop bad things from happening.
Bologna!! If God's power rests in my being happy and content, or in everything having the outcome i desire than I have no god, but a servant or slave. Someone to continually make me happy by making the choices I would like. Kinda scary, if you think about it. The same God that scripture tells us we are the "doo-los" or slave of, is somehow now our slave. Forget it!!
Besides that, that would indicate that you are all knowing and understand the big picture and how these things will play out.
Here's a novel idea, quite trying to control the world, let God do the God thing, and you be the loyal trusting servant. Great idea!! By the way could someone help our nations leaders out with this concept? That's right, you in the White House, your only in power as long as God allows it and by the way times a ticking.
For the record, that is where God is. In the small and in the magnitude of life, He is our comforter, our savior, and our authority.
Till next time keep reading in Daniel.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


Well this week we will begin an in-depth study on the book of Daniel. This is one of the all time greats in the scriptures and is the shortest of the major prophets. Scripture contains 17 prophetical books, 12 of which are known as minor prophets and 5 of which are ...... you guessed it major prophets. Daniel is 12 chapters of incredible real life drama, prophecy, evidence of fulfilled prophecy and hope. Grab a cup of, insert favorite beverage here, and your Bibles and follow along as we seek to understand a book that will take the Holy Spirits revelation to us before we will be able to understand. (Not that other scripture doesn't need Him.) As we study this out your sure to be challenged as it reveals 4 men's undeniable commitment to a Holy God. By the way, as a prophetic book, both fulfilled and future, why not take a look in our own back yard to see how things are going? As you learn more about the history of the Assyrians who captured the Northern kingdom of Israel, and about Judah's captivity by the Babylonians a little over 100 years after, you may find some striking resemblances with our own country. For sure in the leaders you have selected. Oh that's right we don't take credit for the liberals in the white house and congress do we? Well if each generation was brought up understanding God's righteousness and authority we wouldn't be in this mess. Sure that falls on our parents shoulders, but what is on yours for the way your kids will vote? Just saying.....
Anywho, have a lot of fun with this study and we'll be putting some extra points up just in case you missed them or didn't have time to research.
One battle at a time to win the war.
P.s. this weeks memory verse will be Daniel 1:8. Write it down on a memory card and recite it a couple of times a day.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Worship Experts

Well after 6 weeks of training straight from the Word of God, we should be pretty well versed on what God's desire is for worship. Our last topic of worship through relationships, was a good study and after studying for the sermon seems as though it could have been a series within a series. Relationships are so crucial to our worship and to our personal faith, it is almost inseperable. Note I said almost, to clarify that ultimately worship is for an audience of one and can and should be done everyday. The problem is that the six days leading to, or following depending on perspective, creeps into our lives and we show up to church expecting everyone else to be ready to encourage me and love me. After all I have had a nasty week and people just don't seem to care. Newsflash, their week may have been terrible also. Regardless of our desire, we are there to worship God, not you or me. This makes it even more difficult where Paul addresses the church in Corinth and rebukes them for taking sides. Some were following Paul, some Apollos, some Cephas (Peter), and others claimed to be following Christ. Pauls question to them is this, "Is Christ divided?" Simple enough question but profoundly affects our worship on how we answer. Let me ask you a question, are you living in the "glory days"? You know when everything was the way YOU liked it. When we live in the past and hold on to that we miss the future by looking back. You do realize why the rearview mirror is puny compared to the windshield, right. It is more important where you are going than where you have been. Eyes forward, ready for whatever God leads you toward. That is worship! attentively and lovingly longing for His hand in your life and direction to your existance, praising Him, thanking Him, asking Him for those things along the way that you need or desire.
Now, lets go worship THE living God.
See you in the clouds

Monday, February 4, 2013

is prayer in danger?

For the past several weeks we have been talking about worship and this past week we covered worshipping through prayer. Instead of teaching on the how tos, of prayer, i felt it was more pertinent to discuss the freedom or lack there of. I wonder if we think about this very often. Sure our personal prayers in our heads are difficult to monitor but Daniel prostrated himself before the lord, not to mention he did this in his window. Chapter 6 of Daniel tells us about the government officials trying to dig up some dirt on Danny boy and were unable to do it so they did the next best thing, write a new law and have the king sign it. (Sound familiar with any place you know or should i say live?) Daniel was sold out on God and devoted to an ongoing relationship with Him. Not only did the government officials trick the king into signing a law but it was irrevocable. Once Daniel was found worshipping the God of heaven and not the king, the king had no choice but to carry out the punishment of this new decree that he had signed. Although king Darius was remorseful, couldn't sleep and rushed the next morning to check on Daniel, don't expect to see that with your situation. While some "officials" are prayer friendly, the pressure is increasing to limit this activity as though you are a threat to our national security. In reality, prayer is our national security. We see our rights being challenged as Christians and yet as we become more passive, the enemy gains valuable momentum and real estate. Remember when Christian values were at the forefront of our governments decisions? Can you recall when the judicial branch upheld the law and the legislative branch deliberated law? Now we have rogue judges that a few years ago would have been snapped into position, for writing their own laws. Congressmen and women, senators that would have been sent packing for receiving bribes and special interests. Not to mention presidents partying on your dollars, saying that they will defend you while they take your guns and put them in the hands of the very people we are protecting ourselves from. Come on people, time to wake up, take a stance and give this country back to the Christian values it was built upon. We are loosening our borders and welcoming the Muslims to come in and set up shop to do what they would like. Last i checked they were the attackers and don't tell anyone, they hate Americans. At least the non-Muslim ones. It is in their own book in several spots. Don't believe me pick up the Koran and check out Sr 9. to mention a couple. Daniel was the man! He faced certain death and never flinched at the threat because his faith was to large to deny. How is yours, and how do we know?
Till next time, take a stance