When Daddy Comin?

For the past two weeks, I have been home with my family celebrating our new arrival! Since there is only so much I can do for our new baby, most of my time was spent playing with and taking Read more

Angel Tree

When I was a child, my family fully embraced the traditions of Christmas. We decorated our home with the most cherished ornaments, lights, and bows. We handmade or purchased gifts with much thought about the receiver. We made plans Read more

Begin with Jesus

The autobiography of G. Stanley Jones is titled A Song of Ascent, and it’s considered to be a spiritual classic. Jones was a great man: a missionary to India, a friend to Gandhi, a tireless world traveler, and a Read more

Weeds

Have you ever been responsible for a task you didn’t particularly enjoy? Perhaps you can relate to one homemaker who developed a unique perspective on some of her less enjoyable household duties. She said: I don't do windows because I Read more

New Each Day

Patrick Henry, whose primary contribution to the history books is the phrase "Give me liberty or give me death," made another memorable statement. He said, "I know of no way of judging the future but by the past." Repeat this before Read more

Bring It Home

Posted on by Mike Tucker in Articles | Leave a comment

walk the lineThe film Walk the Line is a biographical story of music legend Johnny Cash. In a scene based on Johnny’s first audition for a recording contract, Johnny and his two band members are in a studio with music executive Sam Phillips. The song that they’re auditioning, however, is a common gospel tune that he and his band perform flatly, without emotion or conviction. Part way through, Phillips interrupts:

“Hold on. Hold on. I hate to interrupt, but do you guys got something else?” After an awkward pause, he explains: “I’m sorry. I can’t market gospel no more. I don’t record material that doesn’t sell, Mr. Cash, and gospel like that doesn’t sell.”

Johnny asks, “Was it the gospel or the way I sing it?”

“Both,” Philipps replies.

“Well, what’s wrong with the way I sing it?” Johnny asks.

Phillips’ response is telling: “I don’t believe you,” he says.

“You saying I don’t believe in God?” Johnny’s friends attempt to get him to leave, but he pushes forward. “I want to understand. I mean, we come down here, we play for a minute, and he tells me I don’t believe in God.”

“You know exactly what I’m telling you,” Phillips says. “We’ve already heard that song a hundred times, just like that, just like how you sang it.”

Johnny protests, “Well, you didn’t let us bring it home.”

“Bring it home?” Phillips asks in disbelief. “All right,” he says, “let’s bring it home. If you was hit by a truck and you were lying out in that gutter dying, and you had time to sing one song, one song people would remember before you’re dirt, one song that would let God know what you felt about your time here on earth, one song that would sum you up, you telling me that’s the song you’d sing? That same Jimmie Davis tune we hear on the radio all day? About your peace within and how it’s real and how you’re gonna shout it? Or, would you sing something different? Something real, something you felt? Because I’m telling you right now, that’s the kind of song people want to hear. That’s the kind of song that truly saves people.”

True worship comes from the heart.  It may be simple and it may be familiar, but it is always from the heart.  That’s the kind of worship that saves people.

My Offering

Posted on by Graceroots Movement in Video | Leave a comment

Sabbath Wrest

Posted on by Matthew Gamble in Articles | Leave a comment

Wrest – v : obtain by seizing forcibly or violently

Does Jesus order us to obtain rest by means of wresting? The definition for wrest continues, “To obtain by or as if by pulling with violent twisting movements.”

I recently saw a short film clip where an alligator trainer was sticking his arm into the mouth of one of his “house trained pets”. Suddenly, without warning, the jaws clamped down on the trainer’s arm and the animal began to twist violently as he would when encountering an enemy or a bit of prey.

Our society has painted an elegant picture of a dog eat dog world; what’s mine is mine, and what’s yours is mine! The mentality of entitlement is rampant. On the other hand we have Jesus’ Kingdom modus operandi (MO): what’s mine is yours and what’s yours is yours-to do with as you please. The confusion comes in when we take something that Jesus is giving us freely (Sabbath rest), and we twist it around until it becomes a burden; even bringing us to the point of seeing Him as the enemy. “The Sabbath, designed originally to afford man an opportunity to know his Maker through a study of the things He had made, and to reflect upon His love and goodness, became, instead, a reminder of the selfish and arbitrary character of Pharisee and scribe. It effectively misrepresented the character of God, by picturing Him as a tyrant.”[1]

Jesus taught that, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.” (Mark 2:27) Somehow, we have mistaken the blessing of the Sabbath with seeing it as a curse (at times). God made the Sabbath for our benefit. His intent was never for it to be a burden. He wasn’t thinking, “I want to make a rule so that people everywhere won’t do anything fun until they see the last ray of sun dip beyond the horizon on Saturday night.” Nor was He thinking, “It’ll all be OK just as long as they don’t go into the water past their knees on the Sabbath” (where did that rule come from anyway?). God reserved the Sabbath day as an opportunity for you and me to enter into a zone of Sacred Space with the Divine. May God forgive us of the times where we have taken the Sabbath and violently twisted it into something that God never intended it to be.

:: ENCOUNTER ::

Do you see the Sabbath as a blessing or a curse? Take a moment to reflect on where in your life journey this invitation that Jesus offers us started appear burdensome. Spend a couple of moments listening to Jesus speak to you and tell you what He actually intended the Sabbath to be.

[1] The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Vol 5, p. 587