Friday, January 18, 2008

Voice in the Desert

Mark begins his gospel like this:
"It is written in Isaiah the prophet: 'I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way' -- 'a voice of one calling the desert, "Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him."'
I imagine someone yelling at the top of their lungs, "Prepare the way for the Lord!! Make way!! He's coming!! Make straight paths for him!! Prepare the way!!" This person attracts attention. Those listening wonder who is coming. Some might go out to the road to help fill in those huge holes so royalty will not fall. Others begin getting the big rocks out of the road so this person can pass. The road must be made straight, the path cleaned and prepared. Preparation is necessary to receive the one coming!

How are we going to prepare?

Many times, I feel unprepared to receive the Lord. He desires to come close to work intimately with us. Yet, we fail to make the proper preparations. There are rocks in the way that prevent his coming close. I might even put up the fence of selfishness. As he comes near, he could disappear in the pothole of our consumption with TV and video games. The path is not made ready to receive the Lord.

John prepared the way for Jesus coming by preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. Change was necessary before Jesus came. Jesus desires to be close. He wants to use you in powerful ways. You need to prepare the way for the Lord. Let us do this today!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

TV and Movies

For Sunday college class this semester, I am wanting to focus on discussing video clips from various movies and TV shows. The impact on our younger generation is much more engaging. I love to think about the discussions that we will be having this year. Eventually, I would like to see students bringing clips from their movies that we can discuss.

Please help us, Lord, to use discernment as we watch TV shows and movies. While the entertainment is good, we want to bring glory to your name in our watching. Keep us focused on you. Amen.

Friday, January 11, 2008

My Plate took me eleven days to write anything in 2008. I have enjoyed the break from the normal routine. I got to enjoy platefuls of food with family and friends. This year I didn't eat as much as I have in the past! Even during Thanksgiving I think I only got one full plate and then snacked a little later on. Christmas was the same. This year was not the year where I couldn't fit something else on my plate if I tried.

I wish I actually had some sort of schedule plate to put things on so I would know that I cannot do anything else.

On Wednesday night I realized how much is going on right now, how much I have on my plate. I am training an LST team (maybe two at the same time); teaching Wednesday night class, Thursday devo, and Sunday class; creating the curriculum for our small groups each week; developing and meeting with a leadership team of students; leading a women's weekly small discipleship group; spending time being available for prayer on campus; leading a church small group discussion starting in February; preaching at least once a month; going through premarital counseling with one of our students; going through marital counseling with a couple at church; maintaining the church website and the campus ministry website; staying on top of two service assignments each month; raising funds for our LST trip this summer; spending better time with Tanya, Kayla, and Tyler; and trying to fit in hanging out with students when the opportunity comes.

I'm not sure if there is any more room on my plate...even for any garnish. I'm not sure what to do about all this just yet. I wait to see how things go.

Lord, help me to stay focused. Give me your energy. I cannot do this alone. May your presence sustain me.