Saturday, April 23, 2011

Resurrection Morning, 2011


John 2.19: "Jesus answered them, 'Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.'”

DPC's Easter Service will begin at 10:45 am.

"The Death of God's Son Undone"
from the Gospel of Luke


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Good Friday, 2011


Isaiah 53.10: "It was the will of the LORD to crush him; he has put him to grief."

DPC's Good Friday service will begin at 6:30 pm.

"The Death of God's Son"
from the Gospel of Luke

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth." - 1 Timothy 3.15




"Alone I cannot serve the Lord effectively, and he will spare no pains to teach me this. He will bring things to an end, allowing doors to close and leaving me ineffectively knocking my head against a wall until I realize that I need the help of the body as well as of the Lord."
-- Watchman Nee

"It is not the business of the church to adapt Christ to men, but men to Christ."
-- Dorothy Sayers

"A community is only a community when the majority of its members are making the transition from 'the community for myself' to 'myself for the community.'"
-- Jean Vanier

"The Bible is all about community: from the Garden of Eden to the City at the end."
-- George MacLeod

"My God, grant me the conversion of my parish; I am willing to suffer all my life whatsoever it may please thee to lay upon me; yes even for a hundred years am I prepared to endure the sharpest pains; only let my people be converted. My God, convert my parish."
-- Cure d'Ars

"Ideally when Christians meet as Christians to take counsel together, their purpose is not -- or should not be -- to ascertain what is in the mind of the majority but what is in the mind of the Holy Spirit -- something which may be quite different."
-- Margaret Thatcher

"I would rather fail in the cause that some day will triumph than triumph in the cause that some day will fail."
-- Woodrow Wilson (28th President of the United States; son of a highly-esteemed Presbyterian minister)

"There is a subtle false teaching that says we can be evangelical without being evangelistic. It has us believe we 'go' to church rather than we 'are' the church."
-- Chris Lyons

"The church that does not evangelize will fossilize."
-- Oswald Smith

"I always prefer to believe the best of everybody -- it saves so much trouble."
-- Rudyard Kipling (see 1 Corinthians 13.7)

"More people have been brought into the church by the kindness of real Christian love than by all the theological arguments in the world, and more people have been driven from the church by the hardness and ugliness of so-called Christianity than by all the doubts in the world."
-- William Barclay

"The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church."
-- Tertullian

"The greatest criticism of the church today is that no one wants to persecute it: because there is nothing very much to persecute it about."
-- George MacLeod

"A walloping great congregation is fine, and fun, but what most communities really need is a couple of saints."
-- Martin Thornton

"What makes a good manager?" - someone asked Yogi Berra.
"A good ball club." - Yogi replied

"We are like dwarfs, seated on the shoulders of giants. We see more things than the Ancients, things more distant, but it is due neither to the sharpness of our sight nor the greatness of our stature. It is simply because they have lent us their own."
-- Bernard of Chartres


Monday, April 18, 2011

Dr. Chapell's 2:34 Easter Message

Click here to enjoy a beautifully presented reflection on the resurrection from Dr. Bryan Chapell (president of Covenant Theological Seminary). The footage is taken from his recent trip to Israel.

2 minutes & 34 seconds. You can do it.

Death has indeed been swallowed up in victory. 1 Corinthians 15.54

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Palm Sunday!

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
Hark! all the tribes Hosanna cry;
O Savior meek, pursue Thy road
With palms and scattered garments strowed.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die!
O Christ! Thy triumph now begin
Over captive death and conquered sin.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
The wing├Ęd squadrons of the sky
Look down with sad and wondering eyes
To see the approaching sacrifice.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
Thy last and fiercest strife is nigh;
The Father, on His sapphire throne,
Expects His own anointed Son.

Ride on, ride on, in majesty!
In lowly pomp ride on to die;
Bow Thy meek head to mortal pain,
Then take, O God, Thy power, and reign.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Tim Challies presentation

A very interesting, very thought-provoking 25 minute presentation from Tim Challies (whose book is mentioned in the post below) can be found here.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

More on being alone together... there but not there...

Tim Challies, The Next Story: Life and Faith after the Digital Explosion

Check out the one minute, 14 second clip on youtube by clicking here.

Publisher's Description: Even the least technical among us are being pressed from all sides by advances in digital technology. We rely upon computers, cell phones, and the Internet for communication, commerce, and entertainment. Yet even though we live in this 'instant message' culture, many of us feel disconnected, and we question if all this technology is really good for our souls.

In a manner that's accessible, thoughtful, and biblical, author Tim Challies addresses questions such as:

How has life—and faith—changed now that everyone is available all the time through mobile phones?

How does our constant connection to these digital devices affect our families and our church communities?

What does it mean that almost two billion humans are connected by the Internet ... with hundreds of millions more coming online each year?

Providing the reader with a framework they can apply to any technology, Tim Challies explains how and why our society has become reliant on digital technology, what it means for our lives, and how it impacts the Christian faith.

224 Pages
Published April 2011

About the Author: A pastor, noted speaker, and author of numerous articles, Tim Challies is a pioneer in the Christian blogosphere. Over 20,000 people visit Challies.com each day, making it one of the most widely read and recognized Christian blogs in the world. Tim also is editor of DiscerningReader.com, a site dedicated to offering thoughtful reviews of books that are of interest to Christians. Tim has previously authored The Discipline of Spiritual Discernment, and Sexual Detox. He and his family reside near Toronto, Ontario.

Commendations:

“No one I know is more thoughtfully connected to and wisely critical of the digital universe that envelops us than Tim Challies. In The Next Story, he helps us navigate the rapidly expanding digital explosion. The beauty of the book is not simply its wow factor (“I had no idea all of that was happening on the web...”), but more importantly its heart concern (“How do I stay virtuous in a virtual world?”). Challies’ work is cutting-edge in the best sense, helping Christians to sever themselves from the sin that so easily (and subtly) entangles in order to run the race that glorifies Christ.”
— Bryan Chapell, President, Covenant Theological Seminary

“There are many books evaluating the nature and impact of new media. There are many books on Christian discipleship. However, this book brings these issues together, with profound simplicity and well-informed analysis. This is an important book not only for church leaders but for all of us who seek to understand how we are used by our technology as well as use it.”
— Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics, Westminster Seminary California

“We all marvel at the rapid technological advances that have taken place in our lifetime. But few of us stop to reflect on the profound way these changes are shaping what it means to be human. The Next Story is a great place to start... Instead of simplistic rules or proof texts, it offers a penetrating analysis of the modern world in the light of the biblical story together with practical principles that will enable you to ensure technology is your tool and not your master.”
— Tim Chester, Author, You Can Change

“The digital revolution is one of the most important developments of our times. Christians need good, solid, and insightful guidance as to how to engage the digital world without surrendering to the digital mind. Tim Challies is uniquely qualified to write this book, and I greet its arrival with enthusiasm.”
— Albert Mohler, President, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Monday, April 4, 2011

Frank & Barbara Barker


Second man from the left in the picture above is Frank Barker, former pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church in Birmingham.

My family & I read his book "Flight Path" several months ago, and then wrote to ask Pastor Barker and his wife Barbara if we might be able to take them out to eat and enjoy a visit with them. Frank immediately returned the letter with a phone call, and we did indeed enjoy an afternoon visit over some BBQ.

This last Saturday Barbara spoke to the women of DPC at a one-day retreat. And then on Sunday Frank spoke to the men & boys during the Christian Education class time while Barbara spoke again to the women & girls. And in the worship service Frank preached from John 15.

Funniest true story (of many) that we heard over lunch afterwards: A 102 year old woman confided in her pastor: "I need to hurry up & die! My husband died 41 years ago. He's going to think I went to Hell!"

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Flash

"We're going to have a few surgeries now when he's a baby. Then when he starts walking there will be some more major surgery. Then probably more surgeries down the road. He'll walk... with a limp... but he'll never really be able to run or jump or climb trees and things like that."

That's what the doctor told us when our firstborn son was less than 24 hours old. And looking at his left foot, it should have been easy to believe. It was all twisted around. The part of your foot where your shoelaces go was touching the back part of his leg -- just above the back of his ankle. There was some big, impossible-to-pronounce condition that he had been born with.

And the Lord's grace would have been more than sufficient for dealing with that affliction, if indeed it had remained with him... & with us. But we started fasting & praying. Actually I was the only one fasting; Elizabeth was nursing a baby, so no fasting for her. But we both prayed that the Lord might be pleased to just remove this affliction from our precious baby boy. He could do so if he pleased. He's the Sovereign Lord of heaven and earth.

And six weeks of casting treatment later by Shriner's Hospital, my baby's boy's foot looked perfectly normal.

Last night I watched him run in his first track meet. Oh yes, he can run. He can run pretty well, actually.

"Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!"
1 Chronicles 16.11






Friday, April 1, 2011

April 1st... one of our favorite days of the year...


This picture is a favorite memory from April Fools, 2009. One boy came downstairs & started playing with his toys, completely unaware.

Next boy comes downstairs a few minutes later, does a double-take at the first boy & starts giggling: "Your face!"

This prompts the first boy to look up at the second boy & start giggling back: "Your face!"

Then a conversation begins that went roughly like this:

"No, your face!"
"No, your face!"
"No, your face!"
"No, your face!"... giggling more & more all the time...

Still laugh out loud when I think about it.

Lots of good April Fools memories.

This morning is no exception...