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Showing posts from May, 2015

TRUTH IN A PIGPEN

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There’s nothing like wallowing with pigs to bring you to your senses.
The Jewish boy was raised to see the pig as an unclean animal. He was not to eat pork or even get close to an unclean animal. But, when your heart is drifting from God you wind up kissing more than a few pigs. 

Your insatiable hunger and poverty lead you to unclean places where you consider eating pig food just to get by. Addiction tells a similar story. People that are disconnected from what home should be, find themselves in bad company consuming terrible things in an attempt to sustain a miserable life.
Like the prodigal son, we must stare the pig in the eye and realize how far away from home we’ve travelled. Until we can stare at truth in a pigpen, we will stay in our dejected state, eyeing up the next greasy cob.
The road home starts with confessing the truth about our lives. The road away from home is a dead end. The road away from home brings you to a very dark existence.
Daniel Webster said, ‘There is no refuge …

REHEARSING THE APOLOGY

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Christian counsellor Dick DeGraaf says that life consists of two journeys. One is the journey of independence we take to leave home. The second is the journey to go back home. We are all on one of those journeys.

This is the story we learn from the Prodigal Son. One day he gets as far away from home as he possibly can. Another day is the sorrowful road home. If you find yourself going back and forth, you are not alone.
We may need to reach a breaking point before we commit to the road home. Lost as we find ourselves, we have the Word of God and the Holy Spirit to guide us. We are never alone in the journey.

Luke 15:17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.…

CONFESSION AS ART

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The French philosopher Albert Camus recognized something that most artists and writers know.
Song writing, art and poetry comes from the part of a person that needs to make something good from the chaos in and around them. As a songwriter, I know that the best songs have come from my most troubling experiences. They cry out from the heart. My songs become personalized prayers and confessions. I speak to God and remind myself of God’s work when I sing. I confess my sinful disposition and need of reconciliation.
Every day, we are confessing what’s inside us by the way we choose to live our lives. In the same way that the creator creates, the chaotic begets chaos. What message is confessed by your life? Whatever is inside you will be expressed through your daily and nightly life.
Oh, it’s a messy life… Like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde we feel torn between opposing forces within our nature, the madman and the humanitarian. The spiritual act of confession brings us back to who we want to be.

1 Joh…

HANDS ON

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How do you submit your life to God in a ‘hands on’ way? Do you see your work and physical effort as a love response to God’s goodness?
Our hands can perform extremely gentle and precise actions such as writing a letter, painting a picture, threading a needle or playing a violin. Our hands also enable us to perform heavy labour, such as digging with a shovel, swinging an axe, using a jackhammer to drill through concrete, or pounding a railroad spike with a sledgehammer. We use our hands to feel whether something is rough or smooth, hot or cold, sharp or dull. We hold a child's hand as we cross the street. We caress the hair of a loved one.[1]

Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the realm of the dead, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom.

For a limited time, we are given these mortal bodies. We are created to work at something wholeheartedly. You can work away with a resentful attitude begrud…

HANDS OUT

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A 'hand out' is defined as 'a gift, as of food, clothing, or money, given to the needy.' An unflattering expression for giving away your used items is ‘hand me down’.
There’s a beautiful picture in Scripture of a woman who has many virtues. The godly woman’s hands are described in this way.

Proverbs 31:20 She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.

The person of virtue is not simply doing charity. We see the Proverbs 31 woman extending ‘her hands’. She is personally involved in giving to others. She is not just giving things, but is present in the lives of the poor. There is an attitude of being open-handed rather than tight-fisted.

Deuteronomy 15:7-87 If there is a poor man among your brothers in any of the towns of the land that the LORD your God is giving you, do not be hardhearted or tight-fisted toward your poor brother.8 Rather be open-handed and freely lend him whatever he needs.

When you put your hands out to another in giving, you are also re…