Pastor's Blog
IF PDF Print

1. “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

2. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

3. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.” 

1 Corinthians 13:1-3 ESV


If you look carefully at these three verses you’ll see that Paul uses the conjunction “if” five times in this teaching.  In reality, there is no “if.”  Paul fulfilled or performed all of these phrases, except maybe for the last one.  (If he was burned it wasn’t unto death.  At least not yet.)

Paul spoke in tongues.  In fact he states of himself in this letter that he perhaps spoke in tongues more than any of the Corinthians.  Paul also prophesied and understood many of the mysteries of God.  His knowledge of spiritual matters was par-excellent –  in other words, his knowledge far exceeded most any who followed Christ, then or today.

Paul’s faith in Jesus the Christ was unshakable – he was fully and totally committed to his Savior.  On the Damascus road where Paul had a personal encounter with the risen Christ ... he bought in all the way, he held nothing back.

This tireless apostle, gave all – up to and including his life.  He did all he did, became all he became, for one reason and one only – love!  That, by-the-way, is the more excellent way!

How much has your love for Christ led you to give?

– Dale

 
BEYOND COMPREHENSION PDF Print

God is transcendent!  Meaning that He is beyond our knowing, beyond our  comprehension, beyond any credible description.  God is a reality beyond perception – but a reality none-the-less.  However, there is no existent vista where one could stand and  take in the complete view of God’s glorious presence successfully.

But here’s the fascinating thing regarding our Creator –  that although being so beyond any possible knowing, He yet deigned to stoop down and make Himself known – by becoming us!  What essentially was beyond our grasp or understanding, suddenly drew in breath and placed Himself within the hands of His creation.

Today, because of this sacrifice... we (you and I) can taste and know that God is so very good!  We have the ability to possess an assurance – and without even having clearly comprehended the full scope of God.

We can know because God came down and through that gift He opened up our minds and hearts to know that which cannot be fully known.  Paradoxical as it may seem... God in His incomprehensible grace desires to make Himself known to you!

Thank you Jesus!

– Dale

 
HE CALLS US BY NAME PDF Print

To hear God call our name awes us!

To consider facing such an experience without trembling knees is unthinkable.  To stand before the One, the Author of all that exists, stretches our imaginations to the breaking point.  Then to have that One speak our name transforms and changes life. 

Jesus, too, heard the voice from heaven saying what He already knew.  He was God’s beloved.  What a wonderful message!  To be the beloved Child of the Creator. 

To know one is loved like that transforms and prepares us for anything.  Perhaps that is why the gospels tell us that Jesus left the baptismal moment and God’s affirming voice to go into the desert to be tempted by Satan.

Jesus prevailed because He remembered the voice; He remembered who He was and who was with Him!

God knows us ... calls us by name ... we are not strangers!  No! – we are His beloved!

RPJ

– Dale

 
GENTLENESS PDF Print

Something to think about ...

When developing a disciplined practice, one of the most valuable gifts we can give ourselves is gentleness.  In everyday life we tend to associate discipline with rigidity, rules, and consequences for misbehavior.  Sometimes this kind of discipline is indeed necessary.  However, we tend to downplay the equally important role of gentleness in making changes.

Change requires a great deal of effort from anyone engaged in it –  even if the change is positive.  Change plunges a previously ordered system into temporary chaos, and chaos is stressful.  Gentleness takes into account our effort and stress; treating ourselves gently is a way of offering encouragement and appreciation for the work being done.

From a fellow traveler!

– Dale

 
BOUNDARIES PDF Print

Ok, here are the facts...

The New Orleans Saints lost last Sunday because you didn’t come to church enough last year.  While we’re being truthful, it’s the same reason that the LSU Tigers lost in overtime to a less talented Texas A&M team and had to play a podunk school like UCF in a bowl game.  Just think of the seasons they both would have had if you actually invited people to worship with you this last year?

Does any of this sound reasonable?

Of course not!

It’s “kiss the blarney-stone” malarkey!!!

We know in both cases it’s grown men playing a game against grown men with an oblong ball, and anything can happen... even bad calls!

I took the chance of incurring your wrath just to accentuate this important point.  Day-by-day we make unique choices in our lives that have a way of creating certain paths for us – then suddenly we wonder, “How did we get to this particular place?”

“Do not move an ancient landmark or enter the fields of the fatherless.”  Proverbs 23:10

Day-by-day, decision by decision we chip away at ancient standards – believing that they are obsolete.  Failing to realize that, when God plants a stone of remembrance (as He does with the Decalogue) He means for it to always be remembered.  No matter what the present day faithless culture may be preaching!

Grown people are busy leading anyone who will listen and follow as far away from the light as possible.  Please don’t assist them ... make the call when those within your sphere of influence begin to cross God’s ancient boundaries.

– Dale

 
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