Links & Quotes

link quote

Some interesting reading from today…

“Good performance is the road by which one travels toward life. He who travels this road is in quest of life. ‘Take courage and do manfully.’ This road has its reward. As often as we become fatigued by the journey’s labor, we are enlightened by the grace of a solicitude from on high, and we ‘taste and see that the Lord is sweet.’ And thus comes to pass what was said above—what prayer asks, contemplation finds.” —Hugh of St. Victor (1096-1141 AD)

Help bring home USMC Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi.

[VIDEO] First century synagogue unearthed in Magdala may have been one in which Jesus taught.

A touching reminder from Ken Davis on how he honors his father on Memorial Day.

“We were created to glorify God (Isaiah 43:7), and because Paul said, ‘Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God’ (1 Corinthians 10:31). So it is sin to pursue any good deed, or any act of worship, without the intent to glorify God. But God is not glorified where we find Him less pleasing than other things. He is belittled. Knowing this, we cannot be indifferent to whether we find God pleasing in the actions we pursue. In all those actions, if we would glorify God, we must aim to find Him more pleasing than anything else.” —John Piper

“The One who made and counted all the stars—who monitored every action of the Roman Empire and who keeps all the galaxies in the orbits—has His eye fixed on you. And, Jesus asks, ‘Are you not worth much more to Him?’” —David Wilkerson

“If we function according to our ability alone, we get the glory; if we function according to the power of the Spirit within us, God gets the glory.” —Henry Blackaby

Experiencing The Spirit (book review)

Years ago I read Henry Blackaby’s outstanding book Experiencing God, which helped me see God’s relationship with me in a whole new light. Now Henry and Melvin Blackaby have done the same thing with the role of the Holy Spirit in a Christian’s life in Experiencing The Spirit: The Power of Pentecost Every Day.

I’m a fourth-generation Pentecostal, so I’ve grown up with a solid understanding of the Holy Spirit. But Experiencing The Spirit created in me a longing for something more. I don’t want it to just be a head-only theology, but a heart-felt relationship. In fact, this question in the book hit me right between the eyes: Do you spend more time and effort honing your skills than you do seeking the Lord and deepening your relationship with Him?

I don’t want to just know about God, I want to know Him. And a deeper relationship with the Holy Spirit is what allows that to happen. The Apostle Paul prayed for the church at Ephesus, and I want to make that my prayer too…

I pray that out of His glorious riches the Father may strengthen me with power through His Holy Spirit in my innermost being, so that Christ may dwell in my heart through faith. And I pray that as I am being rooted and established in love, I may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that I may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

For a more intimate relationship with the Spirit of God, I recommend checking out Experiencing The Spirit.

Does Either-Or Work?

Sometimes I read about this debate whether churches should be “attractional” or “missional.” The first approach says that church should attract people first, and then share the gospel with them. The second approach says that if churches simply focus on sharing the gospel they will then attract people.

Either-or. Either missional or attractional.

What about both-and?

Consider the life of Jesus. No one would ever argue that He wasn’t “on mission” all the time. In fact, numerous times He says, “I’m doing what My Father wants me to do,” or even, “It’s not time for me to do that yet.” Jesus was missional.

And yet… “Tax collectors and other notorious sinners often came to listen to Jesus teach. This made the Pharisees and teachers of religious law complain that He was associating with such sinful people—even eating with them! (Luke 15:1-2). People loved being around Jesus. Jesus was attractional.

Jesus exemplified both-and missional-attractional. I think He was able to perfectly balance this because of the work of the Holy Spirit. I can aim for the both-and of missional-attractional in my life … I can give it my best shot. But the only way I can truly achieve anything is by allowing the Holy Spirit to shape and direct my life, just as He did for Jesus. Henry & Melvin Blackaby, in their book Experiencing The Holy Spirit, wrote:

“The world doesn’t need to see good people giving their best to God; they need to encounter God doing in and through us what only He can do! …Our best isn’t good enough when it comes to kingdom work; we need the Holy Spirit in our lives if we’re going to be of use to God.”

I need the Holy Spirit in my life if I’m going to be of use to God, and be of any benefit to people.

I need the Holy Spirit in my life if I’m going to balance both-and missional-attractional like Jesus.

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