One of the great privileges living in Colorado is the ability to be deep in the mountains within an hour of jumping into the car.  Once a year or so I take off by myself and go for a drive with the Holy Spirit.  I bring some of my favorite Christian CDs,  like Casting Crowns and Chris Tomlin, and just drive listening, praising and enjoying God’s creation.  If you have never gone on a drive alone with the Holy Spirit, try it sometime.

The Bible has many verses about mountains.  Moses met God face to face on a mountain.

Exodus 19:16-19
On the morning of the third day there were thunders and lightnings and a thick cloud on the mountain and a very loud trumpet blast, so that all the people in the camp trembled. Then Moses brought the people out of the camp to meet God, and they took their stand at the foot of the mountain. Now Mount Sinai was wrapped in smoke because the Lord had descended on it in fire. The smoke of it went up like the smoke of a kiln, and the whole mountain trembled greatly. And as the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke, and God answered him in thunder.

Here are some others verses regarding mountains:

Judges 5:5The mountains quaked before the Lord, even Sinai before the Lord, the God of Israel.

Psalm 125:2As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore.

Psalm 11:111:1 In the Lord I take refuge; how can you say to my soul, “Flee like a bird to your mountain,

Psalm 90:2Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

Isaiah 54:10For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

Judges 5:5The mountains quaked before the Lord, even Sinai before the Lord, the God of Israel.

God’s Dancing Fool..

July 2, 2013

During my daily Bible reading I came across this passage, 2 Samuel 6:12-22.  It’s a convicting passage for me because it deals with who I really am as a follower of Jesus.  I forces me to ask the question do I worry more about what God thinks of me or what people think of me?

In the passage the Ark of the Covenant was being brought back to the City of David by the command of David, King of Israel.  David was so excited about having the Ark back he began dancing.  And not just dancing, but “dancing with all his might”.  David was getting down!  David loved God and loved pleasing God so much he did not care what others thought of him. David didn’t care if his dancing wasn’t dignified for a king.  He knew he was dancing before the true King!

Even when it was pointed out to David what a fool he was making of himself, he didn’t care, 2 Samuel 6:20-22:

When David returned home to bless his household, Michal daughter of Saul came out to meet him and said, “How the king of Israel has distinguished himself today, going around half-naked in full view of the slave girls of his servants as any vulgar fellow would!”

David said to Michal, “It was before the Lord, who chose me rather than your father or anyone from his house when he appointed me ruler over the Lord’s people Israel—I will celebrate before the Lord. 22 I will become even more undignified than this, and I will be humiliated in my own eyes. But by these slave girls you spoke of, I will be held in honor.”

I have to ask, if it were me would I do the same thing?  Many, many times I do not get down and worship God, either in church or outside of church, because I am concerned what others think.  Like David I should be willing to become undignified when I am in the presence of the true King.

I was honored to be able to give this sermon on the Prodigal Son at my home church, Rocky Mountain Community Church in Littleton, Colorado.  I thought I knew a lot about this passage in Luke 15:11-32 but when I started looking into it I realized there was a lot I didn’t know.  Thanks to the help of Dr. Ken Bailey’s research, my Pastor Anthony Pranno and of course the over site of the Holy Spirit I was given this message.  I hope you enjoy it.

The Prodigal Son

 

P1000764Galatians 2:20

New International Version (NIV)

20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

I love my country and I am proud to be an American.  This country has given me the opportunity to live a life very few who live outside of the United States can hope to.  My father, my brother, my father-in-law have all proudly served this country by serving in the military.  The Air Force, the Navy and Army are proudly represented by my family.  My brother was on the maiden voyage of the Carl Vinson which is the air craft carrier used to dump Bin Laden’s body into the depths of the sea.

I complain that my house is too small, my car is too old and my bank account is too empty.  But if held up to the world standard of wealth my family would rank in the top 1% of the richest in the world.  I can go the doctor anytime I need to and I have a great job that I groan and moan that I have to go to everyday.  I am spoiled.  I have no idea how good I have it here in the good ol’ US of A.

I have been to the slums of Juarez and slept on the concrete floor of a church while we built 2 small houses that would house 2 families of 8.  They were moving into a 800 square foot house after living in a deserted bus. But I was able  to go home to my suburban home and go to church where we were celebrated as heroes for going and spending 3 days in Juarez where others live in obscurity everyday of there lives and so happy to just be alive and loving Jesus.

I love America!  I fly my flag proudly.  But my identity is in Christ and my home is not here. It is with Jesus is heaven.  My goal in life is to live up to Jesus’ command:

Matthew 22:37-40

New International Version (NIV)

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’  38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

And I am trying to be like the Apostle Paul:

 

 Philippians 4:11-13

New International Version (NIV)

11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

I am thankful for what I have and I need quit chasing what I do not have.  I have all I need and it all comes from Christ.  Thank you Jesus for all you have done for me and for allowing me to live in such a great country.

 

The Desire of Your Heart

April 16, 2013

Growing up as a kid I learned to love baseball.  I played it everyday, all day long.

I can still smell the leather of desire of heartmy glove and feel the stitches of the ball on my fingers.  I can smell the freshly mowed grass of the outfield and I can still remember the wonderful crack of my wooden bat when I got a hold of a fastball on the barrel and watched it travel over the fence.  Man those were great days.  In the movie “Moneyball” Brad Pit, who plays the Oakland A’s GM Billy Beane, says “How can you not be romantic about baseball?” I could not agree more.

It was my life’s dream to play in the major leagues.  I wanted to wear the uniform of two teams, the New York Yankees and the St. Louis Cardinals.  I just was not good enough to play major league baseball.  And because of a bad arm at the age of 17 I put down my bat and glove for good.  I would go on to play softball but it wasn’t the same as facing a Nolan Ryan fastball.  I wonder if I would have felt my knees shake in fear had I gotten that opportunity.  But that is not what God had in store for me.

After I became a Christian and I started to understand what God meant by giving us the desire of our heart, it became more and more apparent it was about my desire melding with His desire.  My second love was fishing and I found out God wanted me to become a fisherman.  Not of bass or trout or even sailfish but of souls.  He wanted me to be a fisher of men just like Peter.

I still love to fish for fish and I still hold a love for baseball but my true love is to see people’s lives changed and transformed for eternity for Christ.  What is the desire of your heart?