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Monthly Archives: June 2014
Listen to a great radio commentary or read the commentary below.
If we keep our eyes open, we can see the parables of Jesus come to life. Next on BreakPoint, a stunning story of restoration and a Good Samaritan.
On a recent Friday morning, Bryant Collins, an automobile repairman in Georgia, was driving along the highway when he thought he saw something alongside the road.
Actually, what he thought he saw was a baby.
So, Collins pulled over and, to his surprise, found that he was right: It was a fifteen-month-old girl.
What followed is a story about what restoration looks like and why we often miss it.
Collins picked up the child, put her in his car, and called 9-1-1. For the next two hours, he comforted the child while the authorities tried to figure out who she was and how she’d come so close to the highway.
During that time, the child became upset. So, Collins resorted to the method that works for him when he gets upset: He played Gospel music on his cellphone. And it worked.
As if “baby found on the side of the road by passing motorist” wasn’t enough of a story, Collins’ own story garnered headlines: Collins, you see, is an ex-prisoner. He served ten years in federal prison for manufacturing cocaine.
He told an Atlanta TV station that, while in prison, “I made a very conscientious effort to change, and I did,” and that he has been sober and law-abiding since his release five years ago.
The story about the ex-offender turned Good Samaritan has captured the imagination of people not only in Georgia but across the country. The Atlanta television station that broke the story has received, in its words, “email after email” and its Facebook page has received more than 600,000 “likes.”
More tangibly, Collins has received job offers and other offers of financial support. So much so that he is overwhelmed by it all.
But there’s more on display here than a “feel good” story about an African-American ex-offender saving a strawberry blond baby by the side of the road. When people use the words “good Samaritan” to characterize Collins’ actions, they’re more right than they know.
Biblical references such as “good Samaritan,” when properly used, are more than pithy phrases. They bring along as it were the whole story from which they were drawn. In this case, Jesus’ reply to the scribe’s self-justifying question “Who is my neighbor?”
The answer: Not who you’d expect.
It’s unlikely that Collins was the only motorist who drove by the baby that morning. But he was the only one who we know for certain saw her. And seeing her, he took the time to stop and make sure that his perception was correct, and then he helped.
Collins says that he hopes that the lesson people take from his story is that “no matter how bad your situation has been—because most of these people that know me know that I’ve had some bad situations—that if you just keep trying, keep trying and make a serious effort to want to be changed, with God’s help, you can be changed.”
Here at BreakPoint and Prison Fellowship, there’s a phrase we often use: “Isn’t that just like God?” Well, isn’t it just like God to use two of the least powerful members of our society—a baby and an ex-offender—to show us that change is not only possible, it’s going on all around us? You just have to be willing to see.
WASHINGTON (June 30, 2014) – The Supreme Court says corporations can hold religious objections that allow them to opt out of the new health law requirement that they cover contraceptives for women.
The justices’ 5-4 decision Monday is the first time that the high court has ruled that profit-seeking businesses can hold religious views under federal law. And it means the Obama administration must search for a different way of providing free contraception to women who are covered under objecting companies’ health insurance plans.
Contraception is among a range of preventive services that must be provided at no extra charge under the health care law that President Barack Obama signed in 2010 and the Supreme Court upheld two years later.
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A few weeks ago we honored our fathers. So what should a good father leave for his kids.
To you, O God of my fathers, I give thanks and praise, for you have given me wisdom and might, and have now made known to me what we asked of you, for you have made known to us the king’s matter.”
A. Wisdom: The most important thing you can pray or teach your kids to pray is God show me your will for my life=Charles Stanley
Wisdom is the ability to think and act using knowledge, experience, understanding, common sense, and insight. Wisdom has been regarded as one of four cardinal virtues; and as a virtue, it is a habit or disposition to perform the action with the highest degree of adequacy under any given circumstance. This implies a possession of knowledge or the seeking thereof in order to apply it to the given circumstance. This involves an understanding of people, things, events, situations, and the willingness as well as the ability to apply perception, judgement, and action in keeping with the understanding of what is the optimal course of action. It often requires control of one’s emotional reactions (the “passions”) so that the universal principle of reason prevails to determine one’s action. In short, wisdom is a disposition to find the truth coupled with an optimum judgement as to what actions should be taken in order to deliver the correct outcome.
Wisdom is not having brain smarts. There are many souls who have all kinds of degrees but don’t have Godly wisdom. Godly wisdom is something which you get from God as you trust and obey him.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”James 1:5
At times the best thing a father can say to his children and wife is I don’t know what to do here but lets pray and ask God.
B. Character: Fathers it is more important who you are than what you do. It has been said how you live matters more than what you do for a living.
Ecclesiastes 7:1 English Standard Version (ESV)
A good name is better than precious ointment,
and the day of death than the day of birth.
None of this is to say fathers should be perfect. The key dad is how you deal with your sins and mistakes. The best thing fathers can do when he does something wrong to his child is to tell the child he is sorry. There is no sinless perfection but we should deal with sin in our lives.
I found this while doing a search on the net.
The Six Pillars of Character:
Now only five count for this teaching so I am going to only use five of them.
Be honest • Don’t deceive, cheat, or steal • Be reliable — do what you say you’ll do • Have the courage to do the right thing • Build a good reputation • Be loyal — stand by your family, friends, and country
Treat others with respect; follow the Golden Rule • Be tolerant and accepting of differences • Use good manners, not bad language • Be considerate of the feelings of others • Don’t threaten, hit or hurt anyone • Deal peacefully with anger, insults, and disagreements
Do what you are supposed to do • Plan ahead • Persevere: keep on trying! • Always do your best • Use self-control • Be self-disciplined • Think before you act — consider the consequences • Be accountable for your words, actions, and attitudes • Set a good example for others
Play by the rules • Take turns and share • Be open-minded; listen to others • Don’t take advantage of others • Don’t blame others carelessly • Treat all people fairly
Be kind • Be compassionate and show you care • Express gratitude • Forgive others • Help people in need
C. Love for his wife:
1. “Love your wife as Christ loved the Church.”(Ephesians 5:25)
Risk your life to help or save your wife. Christ’s love for the church is without limits, nothing is held back. He gave His life for the church – before you loved Him. His love does not depend on your love for Him. Under God’s authority – love your wife as service–as giving your life to God.
2. “Love your wife in the same way you love your body and your life.”(Ephesians 5:28-33)
You care for your body daily to be as well fed and healthy as possible. You quickly take care of any needs or desires. Any sexual desire as a husband should be cared for with your wife. In the same way, care for your wife’s needs and well being. Feel your wife’s pain and illness and rejoice in her health as if it were your own life. A husband must see his wife’s sexual desires and make supreme efforts to meet those needs too. Basically, her need or desire whether financial, physical, emotional or spiritual in your relationship must receive your full effort. Only in this way can you love her and provide for her just as well as you do for yourself.
3. “Be considerate as you live with your wife, with respect …”(I Peter 3:7) The Bible says that if we neglect this command, our prayers will be hindered! To be considerate, quit any irritating habits! When she needs to be helped carrying heavy items, do it! If she needs time you can take care of the family! Help your wife with all of your energy, show your love to her with all consideration. Pray to see where you may be inconsiderate.
4. “Do not be harsh with your wife.”(Colossians 3:19)
When a wife is sensitive realize that harsh answers, angry looks, irritated tones of voice and impatience will deeply affect your wife. Rejoice that she is a lady and isn’t like you – remember that she is a precious gift God has given you.
5. “Call your wife ‘blessed’ and praise her.”(Proverbs 31:28-29)
Tell her that she is special and is greater than any other woman on earth. Don’t just mention her physical beauty, but her care for you, her hard work, and her ladylike attributes. Watch the flower of your wife blossom as you repeatedly fill her ears with your praises. She longs for those words and she wants to hear them from you! Of course you don’t need pride, but that does not change the wife’s need and longing to be treasured.
6. “Be thankful for your wife and realize the favor you have received from God.”(Proverbs 18:22)
Just think of how lonely you would be without a wife. Adam was alone and it wasn’t good for him to be alone, so God gave him a wife. You have a lifetime companion, a friend, and a lover to enjoy every day. What a blessing! Thank God and pray for her daily. She is a tremendous “prize” from God.
7. Demand your children respect your wife.
Mr. if your child doesn’t respect their mother you should bring the hammer
down on them. I don’t mean abuse your child but if they give your wife attitude it is time for some tough love.
D. Discipline Life:
“God has given us a spirit of discipline” (2 Tim.1:7)
“The fruit of the Spirit is self-control” (Gal.5:22,23).
Discipline is what modern believers need the most but want the least.
The following comes from this website http://www.edgewoodcoc.org/5TheChristianAndSelfDiscipline.htm
The Christian life is often compared to a race in the New Testament, and we all know that training to compete in a race or any athletic competition requires a degree of discipline and self-control by the one who competes. We compete daily to remain faithful to Jesus and to “walk in the light” (1 John 1:7). It takes discipline and self-control to follow the commands of God and live a holy life. The apostle Paul compared his own spiritual life to a race when he said, “Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it” (1 Cor. 9:24). He then spoke of his own personal need for discipline by stating, “Therefore I run thus: not with uncertainty. Thus I fight: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified” (1 Cor. 9:26,27).
1. Let’s learn to discipline our daily devotion to God. We know that we should all study our Bibles each day (2 Tim. 2:15). The apostle Paul wrote that we should “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess. 5:17), and “continue earnestly in prayer” (Col. 4:2). We should follow the Old Testament example of speaking to our family daily about God and his word (Deut. 6:6-9). Like any other routine, it takes discipline and self control to stick to it. When we discipline ourselves to do these things on a daily basis, we will grow closer to God.
2. Let’s learn to discipline our doubtful thoughts and attitudes. Satan has made sure to fill our environment with doubt and negativity about God. We are bombarded with anti-God and anti-Christian propaganda everywhere we turn. We must be careful what we allow to enter into our minds. The Bible says, “For as he (man) thinks in his heart, so is he” (Prov. 23:7). Christians can be overtaken by negative thoughts. We must discipline our minds by thinking on positive things. The apostle Paul said, “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy – meditate on these things” (Phil 4:8).
3. Let’s learn to discipline our worldly desires. The apostle John wrote, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:15,16). If we do not practice self-control and discipline, we can easily be pulled back into the world. We fight these desires by focusing our attention and desire in the right direction. Paul said, “If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth” (Col. 3:1,2).
4. Let’s learn to discipline ourselves to do our duties. We have all heard it said, “Idle hands are the devil’s workshop.” If we learn to be about the Lord’s business on a daily basis, we will be less likely to be involved in things we shouldn’t be. Paul told the Corinthians, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Cor. 15:58). Remember, our Lord said, “So likewise you, when you have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.'” -Ed
E. Love to make Christ known:
Ephesians 3:17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith …
The key to sharing the gospel is not sharing what you have done but sharing what God has done for you. Eph. 2:8-9
A Godly father should help his kids see not only the duty in sharing Christ but the joy in doing ministry. By the way ministry is not only teaching a Sunday School class but it can be just bringing someone a cold glass of water.
So you might ask how does a Godly dad pass on the joy of doing ministry work onto his children.
1. Serve in the home: A father should serve his children and wife. A Father’s most important job is when he comes home from the office. Your children along with your kids need to see Jesus in you in the home. If you are telling everyone away from the home about Jesus but are not serving your family Mr. you got a problem. How do you do that? Play with the kids, cook, wash the dishes.
2. Teach your family the word: Every family should have a regular Bible Study and prayer time. Where possible that should be led by the father.
3. Do ministry with your kids: Take your family to a soup kitchen. If possible take your teens on a mission’s trip.
4. Not only take your family to church but go with them to church: Dad you should not just drive your kids and wife to church but you should lead them into the church door.
F. Love for the Lord and his word:
2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,
Matthew 22:37 And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.
The greatest thing a father can pass onto his children is a love for the Lord and his word.
So how can fathers pass those onto his kids.
A. Fathers should have a quiet time each day: In that time you read from the Bible, pray and perhaps read study something else spiritual.
B. Fathers should show their faith in everyday life not just a Sunday faith. A way I do that is no matter who is in the car before I take I pray.
C. Fathers should be growing in their faith: No follower of Jesus including dads are perfect. However with birth must come growth = Bible answer man
D. Fathers should obey the word of God: Dad if you are telling your kids about Jesus and taking them to church but at the same time you are mistreating your wife or children what you say will have little or no impact for good. Never underestimate what one person can do outside the will of God. If you don’t live for God while talking about God that will show your kids Jesus is not that important.
Now you fathers who don’t have a relationship with Jesus you really can not pass on to your kids anything that will last forever. However if today you will receive Christ and repent of your sins you can start a new direction for you and your family that will last forever.
You dads who do know Jesus but you have not lived for him all you have to do is repent of the way you have been living and let God help you to live for the Lord.
Now a word to those of you who did not have a good dad. The Lord wants to be your father. He becomes your father when you become his child by placing your faith in Christ. God the father will give you spiritual spankings but he will never abuse you.
Billy David Dickson All Rights Reserved, 2014
This blog may be reproduced in whole or in part with a full attribution statement. Contact Billy or read more commentary on current issues at https://billydteacher.wordpress.com/.
Washington Redskins are dropping name because it is embarrassing
9-Year-Old Fighting To Keep Free Library After City Council Shuts Him Down
Meriam Ibrahim Charged With Falsifying Documents, Can’t Leave Sudan
Congressman rebukes Presbyterians
Group says pro-homosexual pastor ‘selfish’ in staying with UMC
And from yesterday’s blogging….
Obamas Biggest Regret in the White House ( audio commentary )
John Kerry is working to ensure’ U.S. has LGBT ambassadors even if it puts the nation in danger
A 9-year-old Kansas boy is fighting for his right to operate a tiny library from his front yard after city officials deemed it an illegal structure.
Spencer Collins built his “Little Free Library” — one of 15,000 “take a book, leave a book” structures that have popped up around the world — both as a Mother’s Day gift and as an attempt to engage with his Leawood, Kansas, community through one of his favorite pastimes.
It’s a way to “get into reading, get to know your neighbors, and … make friends,” he told Fox 4 News.
But a month after setting up the birdhouse-sized structure, the Collins family received a letter from the city telling it to take down the library by June 19 or face a fine for violating a code banning freestanding structures. The Leawood City Council said it received complaints about the library and could not presently make an exception for it.
( Billy’s thoughts – Good job government try to stop a kid from encouraging others to read. Read more on this issue by going here. )
We’ve been following this case rather closely and the news is only getting worse. Though Meriam Ibrahim’s life was saved two days ago when Sudanese authorities invalidated her court-ordered execution for apostasy (that same day, incidentally, she was finally reunited with her family), she’s now been accused of fraud and banned from leaving the country indefinitely. The Daily Mail reports (via my colleague Ed Morrissey):
( Read more )
An expert on Methodism suggests a United Methodist pastor who was defrocked for his personal beliefs on same-sex “marriage” should have resigned rather than put the denomination through two trials so far.
Frank Schaeffer lost his preaching credentials last year after a trial over charges that he conducted his son’s homosexual marriage ceremony in 2007 and then declined to promise not to repeat the mistake. On Tuesday an appeals panel in Pennsylvania reinstated him with back pay, saying the jury that convicted him of breaking UMC law erred when determining his punishment.
John Lomperis, director of United Methodist Action for the Institute on Religion & Democracy, hopes that decision will be appealed to the UMC’s Judicial Council, the denomination’s highest court.
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