Archive for December, 2007

I recently came across this great podcast Missionary Talks, where David Peach interviews missionaries and they talk together about their experiences overseas.

From the blog:

Missionary Talks has a three-fold purpose. Primarily it will help young people, and those considering missions, realize that missionaries are normal people fulfilling God’s will in their lives. It will also be a help to those church members who support missionaries know better how to pray for the men and women on the field. Finally, it is to be an encouragement to other missionaries as they learn about other fields of service and how God is working around the world.

I have just started listening and it has become a great addition to my podcast list. Just over a year old, podcasts are uploaded weekly and can be listed to through any mp3 player or even straight from your computer! I personally find it interesting to hear about what God is doing around the world and the short stories of His workers! Each show is about 15 minutes long.

He also has a little section about unreached people groups on the right side column.

You can listen to a short introduction audio here (clicking the link will open a mp3).

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About a month ago we attended the Global Health Missions Conference, one of the breakout sessions was entitled Ten Essentials of Highly Healthy Marriages by Walt Larimore, based off of Ed Young’s book The Ten Commandments of Marriage. Here are the 10 Essentials and what I took away from them.

  1. Thou Shalt Not Be a Selfish Pig

Don’t get a case of Self-ITIS. Self-ITIS comes from Immaturity, how you make your Time choices, Insensitivity to your spouse, Stubbornness vs. Submission.  This really struck a cord with me and how selfish I can be at different/most times! The cure for Self-ITIS is putting PEP back in your marriage – Priorities, making sure you are on the same page – Expectations, define and understand each others – Patterns, what are good lifestyle patterns. He also suggested reading The Five Love Languages and His Brain, Her Brain: How Divinely Designed Differences Can Strengthen Your Marriage.

  1. Thou Shalt Cut the Apron Strings

Cleave to your Spouse – Cleave to a Covenant (not a contract) – Leave your Parents (counseling and economic are the 2 big ones) – Leave the Past behind.  Genesis says that you will leave your mother and father and the 2 shall become 1. Jesus actually quotes it in Matthew 19:4-6, adding that no one should split what God has put together. I like the idea of this one, but it can be a little tricky to find the balance, especially with family.

  1. Thou Shalt Continually Communicate

This is a no brainer! Communication keeps any relationship healthy and happy.  Unfortunately, in married life there is a lot that can hinder it including schedules, kids, TV, fear of conflict and much more. I would say that the biggest hindrance in our communication is our schedules and self-ITIS.

  1. Thou Shalt Make Conflict Thy Ally

This is a tricky one as well, because not many people really embrace or desire conflict.  It needs to be resolved at some point and the sooner the better.  I didn’t have good conflict resolution role-models so this isn’t a strong suit of mine either.  Dr Walt says that we should Utilize our Faith – Understand our Spouse – Understand Self – Don’t let the sun go down on anger.  Seems simple enough right? Making Confession and Forgiveness a priority is something that I struggle with a lot.

  1. Thou Shalt Avoid the Quicksand of Debt

Over 50% of divorces stem from money problems.  Some of this can be overcome by talking about money, budgeting, and holding each other accountable. He suggested that after subtracting taxes and tithes you should operate on 70%, save 10% and use 20% for debt reduction.

  1. Thou Shalt Flee Sexual Temptation Online and Otherwise

God has a design for sex, but sexual temptation should be treated as a disease (outside of marriage).  I really like this quote: “Intimacy takes time, good timing, and time away together.”

  1. Thou Shalt Forgive Thy Spouse 490 Times and More

Due to time constraints he didn’t finish going through his presentation, but I went back and looked at a copy of it and gleaned this information. FORGIVING

                • Forgiving is highly healthy
                • Organize your thoughts by writing
                • Review your experience
                • Give the boot to anger and regret
                • Invest in removing resentment
                • Victory comes in forgiving others
                • Increase your gratitude for past pain
                • Navigate to Inner peace
                • Give comfort to others
  1. Thou Shalt Keep the Home Fires Burning

Dr. Walt describes three stages of marriage:

1) Honeymoon Stage – this is where we are still! Everything is perfect!

2) The Party’s Over Stage – Resigning to the fact of married life, just getting through

3) The Best is Yet to Be Stage – forward looking, working on mature love.

He talked a lot about mature love, using 1 Corinthian 13:4-8 as the model. He said MATURE love should be Motivated, Attentive, Tender, Understanding, Respectful, and Excited.

  1. Thou Shalt Begin Again and Again

This is his secret to marriage survival, being willing to start over, time after time.  Using the 6 A’s of Acceptance, Attention, Adjustment, Amnesty, Appreciation, and Affection to go through the process.

  1. Thou Shalt Build a Winning Team

We have built a winning team called TEAM CROSS! we have built that team with a competent architect (God), the right coach (we are still searching for a good coach), the players (we are the right ones!), the intangibles (we’ve got lots of those too!), fan support (we are blessed with loving friends and family), and finally determination and commitment (we’ve got that too!).

A full copy of his presentation is available at the CDMA website (scroll down to Walt Larimore and click on Marriage (ppt)).

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In May I created a blog focused on running in Central Indiana called Run Central Indiana, since we are moving away from Central Indiana to Minnesota this blog wouldn’t work for me to continue writing about my running!

I tried to find someone to continue it, but haven’t had any luck so far. Here is my updated information for those who wish to follow my running:

If you would like to continue to follow my running journey I have created a new blog, this time not location specific! You can continue following my journey at Team Cross Runs the actual URL is www.teamcrossworld.com/running. Click here to subscribe to the new feed (e-mail feeds are also still available). My new e-mail address will be running (at) teamcrossworld.com

In many ways it will be very similar to RCI, except that it won’t have content about weekly races and results (related to Central Indiana).  The new blog will be more personal although I’ll still blog about broad-based running topics, with others filling in the remainder of my time.

It is hard to know what to do with my subscribers and friends and I hope many of them will continue to follow me around, where ever my travels may lead!

Thanks!

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10… 9… 8… 7… 6… 5… 4… 3… 2… 1… 0!!!!

Perspectives 2008 is rapidly approaching! In less than 3 weeks Moms, Dads, Sisters, Brothers, Daughters, Sons, Aunts, Uncles, Grandpas, Grandmas, and maybe even some Great-Grandparents will begin experiencing the power and majesty of God in a new and different way as they explore Him through the framework of Perspectives on the World Christian Movement.

“He’s just being dramatic again,” you may say. Or, “He’s getting paid to say all this stuff.” So I’ll let you hear from a few others who value this course.

What Others are Saying

Perspectives 2008 should be a requirement for all Christians! Especially for young believers at the start of the journey to understand what God is doing in regions all over the world. This course will help us discover that we are here to bring glory to Him and to Him alone. This study provides a comprehensive view to what God is doing and how we can be involved in the work that he is doing. Do whatever you need to do to take advantage of this GREAT opportunity! Whether you are new to the faith or a seasoned veteran, you will benefit immensely from Perspectives 2008! Mark Shaner, missions pastor at East Side Church of God.

One of the very finest classes I’ve ever taken. 2007 Student from Anderson Perspectives

If I had my way, every believer in America would take this course! Dr. Don Finto – Senior pastor, Belmont Church, Nashville TN

First Night Free – don’t forget that the first night will be free for everyone to attend!

Steve at Theological Musings has compiled an excellent list of ways we misrepresent God at different points in our life or through our whole life.  I found myself at different stages of life in some of this list.  Here is only a small sample of the list.  Please check his site for the full list.

  • If you think that sickness, financial problems, hurricanes, broken bones, auto accidents, and terrorist attacks are all tools of God “to teach you something”, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you believe that Christianity is best represented by a set of propositional statements and/or a systematic theology, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If your message does not lead to freedom, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that America is “God’s chosen country” and that everything America’s foreign policy represents is ordained by God, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that the Republican party is “God’s party, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that religion and Christianity are compatible, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that you can only “cooperate” in ministry and missions with people who have been baptized by a pastor in your same denomination, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that true Christianity is only represented by a particular denomination or systematic theology, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that the only legitimate way to articulate one’s belief in God is found in a 4th-century statement, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that our main responsibility in relationship to God is to study the Bible, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that a relationship with God means that you will accept or reject certain styles of music, certain hairstyles, certain beverages, or hanging out with certain people, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you think that Jesus turned water into mere grape juice, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you believe that a particular translation of the bible is the only inspired version, you might be misrepresenting God.
  • If you believe that one’s beliefs about baptism, bible translation, rapture timing, tongues, or a particular interpretation of Genesis 1-2 are absolute essentials to salvation and/or fellowship, you might be misrepresenting God.

Thanks Steve for some great Jeff Foxworthy style points!

Hattip Imago Dei

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It has always been a little odd in my book that churches would cancel services due to extreme weather.  In a very practical way it makes sense because some people who try going to church even with 5 feet of snow and end up in the ditch or with a broken hip.  But since when is Christianity a practical religion?

We continually rely on Christ for protection and blessing, why wouldn’t He protect us on Sunday morning? That being said, pretty much every church in the area was canceled yesterday morning.  Some still held their late morning/early afternoon services.  It was probably a pretty smart decision because at 8:30 our road still hadn’t been plowed and there was a nice layer of ice covering everything as well. I would have still tried to make it to church!

On a similar note our student ministries pastor was traveling home Saturday evening from a trip to Wisconsin and arrived home 5 hours later than expected.  He’s a few years younger than me, but was seriously contemplating just stopping and getting a hotel.  He had been praying for safety and really started praying again for protection and safety, when he made the next turn he “ended up” right behind a snow plow which he was able to follow for 2 hours!! In his own words: Without that, I don’t know what would’ve happened.  But it’s cool to see God even in crazy stuff like a snow plow, I knew He was watching out for me and got me home safe.

What do you think about canceling church?

 

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You may or may not have noticed but Crossinator has a new web home!! It is still being hosted by blogger, but can now be reached at blog.teamcrossworld.com. Any of your old blogspot links will still work (indefinitely) with this change, they will just be redirected to the new address.

So far everything seems to be working smoothly.

Let me know if you have any problems!

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