Wednesday, August 29, 2007

I March to the Beat of My Own Drum and I am a Christian

"And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved" (Acts 2:42-47).

Man, these people were together!!! No selfishness here; just people who were devoted to the gospel and to each other, until chapter 5 (Ananias and Sapphira) and we all know what happened there. What was the difference for Ananias and Sapphira? They wanted to be disciples, but do their own thing too. In other words, they wanted to march to the beat of their own drum.

Okay, so you probably read the title of this blog and thought, "What!? That sounds absolutely un-Christian!" Guess what, you're right. However, this attitude and lifestyle is far more rampant in the American church than we might realize.

Let's test ourselves.

Do I make it an absolute priority to attend worship at my local church every Sunday or do I miss whenever there is a schedule conflict? That question, of course, assumes you are committed to one local body. So, we'll ask the next obvious question, am I committed to one local body of believers as seen in Scripture (Acts). Am I committed to serving in a particular ministry within my church or do I show up when I want, where I want? Do I unwaveringly fulfill this commitment, making sure I am always there and always on time? Or do I expect a "pat on the back" and adoration from my peers when I do show up and if no one acknowledges that I am there I get at least a little angry? Do I respond well to biblical correction and/or counsel. What are my thoughts and attitudes when one of my peers or someone younger in the faith attempts to teach me something? Do I show respect for everyone else's time and life by being punctual? Do I fulfill my commitments or do I blow them off at any inconvenience or better opportunity? Do I acknowledge and encourage others in their walk with Christ? Do I seek out new people on Sundays or in Small Group to help make them feel welcome and loved, or do I leave that to others because I have my clique? Do I even care if they feel welcomed and loved or if they even stick around?

Well, there are probably a million more questions to test ourselves on, but you get the idea. No doubt in my mind that many of us have been defaming the name of Christ before our brothers and sisters and the world by marching to the beat of our own drum.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Preparing for the Big Day!!!

So as you probably know my wife and I are due to have a baby within the next 2 weeks or so. Over the last few weeks I have had the unforgettable opportunity to attend a few child/labor classes, including a breastfeeding class in which I got a pretty good laugh when I raised my hand to answer the question if anyone in the room had not had any change in their breasts since the onset of pregnancy. So, after watching many videos and interacting with many people over the last few weeks, I have come up with a list of things not to do or say when during the course of your wife's pregnancy, delivery, and thereafter.

1. During labor you don't say, "I know how you feel."

2. "Wow! What is that? It sure doesn't look like a baby."

3. During labor: "How much longer do you think this is going to be? I'm getting a little tired."

4. During pregnancy: "Geez, you go to the bathroom more than my grandmother."

5. "Honey, you're really starting to fill out."

6. "Hey, save some food for the rest of us."

7. In one class there was actually a husband who when talking about increased sense of responsibility said, "Now when I go out with my friends I have to try to make it home that night."

8. During labor: "It can't really hurt that bad."

9. During labor: "I'm getting tired...I need to take a break."

10. During labor: "You make a funny face when you are pushing."

11. After 6 hours of labor: "Wow, all that and you're only 3 centimeters dilated. You have a long way to go."

12. During labor: "Great. Thanks a lot. All your screaming made me miss the score of the game!"

13. After my niece was born my brother took E and I to the nursery to show us his baby and he actually pointed to a black baby at first. Now, this really confused me because I had never seen a newborn before so I started to think through all the possible anthropological implications of why newborns look black. Turned out that my mom said, "Are you sure because that baby is black. I think yours is over there."

14. "You're always hungry."

15. "That little waddle you do now is so cute." - Thankfully my beautiful wife walks in the same hot way that she did before she was pregnant - no waddle from her!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

New Orleans Update

My blogging for this week has been temporarily relocated to give updates on the New Orleans mission trip. Go to There are some great pictures in there too.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

The Minnesota Bridge

This is a great video by John Piper about the collapsed bridge.

Here is the link: Video from the Collapsed Bridge

Steve Best is my new editor. He caught "Minnisota" for me.