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Showing posts from 2011

Not a thumping gizzard.

First I would like for you to go and read this post by a woman I know as Jamie the Very Worst Missionary.

http://www.theveryworstmissionary.com/2011/11/guard-your-heart-bro.html

Now then. Here is my response to her post.

Distant. Angry. Frustrated. Driven. Workaholic. Crude. Bastard. Jerk. Jock. Checked out. 
Layers upon layers of names have been given to men over the course of their lives. Crybaby. Queer. Punk. Sissy. Useless. Quitter. Failure. 

Over and over again, the lies wash over our identity hammering at who we really are. Denying what is the truest about us. That we were created to bear an image, to reign over all created things, to stand up to the adversary that seeks to ensnare and destroy the truth about you and me. 

And it has damn near worked. 

There is a voice that speaks other words, gives other descriptions...

Son. Warrior. Lover. King. Mighty one. Kinsman, Redeemer. Brother. Husband. Father. Friend. 

A voice that cries out from the dirt and the rocks. A voice that whispers th…

What's that sound?

My friend Ken Holsberry taught on Sodom this past Wednesday night. Here were some thoughts from his lesson. 

Sin has a sound. Genesis 18:16-33; Isaiah 59:4. Is there anyone to intercede? God hears the shouts of the abused, mistreated and tortured. 
He hears the moans of poverty, and the cries of the hungry. 
What does my sin sound like to God?
Why can I not hear it? Do I ignore it?
Abraham stepped in between God and Sodom to bargain for their life. (Gen 18:22-32)
Paul would go to hell to save his countrymen. Moses bargained for the lives of the Israelites. 
They all loved someone who was going to be destroyed. Do we love any who are in danger? Do we love those caught in their sin?
God hears the deafening sound of sin. 
During the triumphal parade like entry into Jerusalem, Jesus stopped and wept over the city for the destruction to come. The Christ begged they be forgiven from the cross and he desires that all would come and repent and be redeemed From their lives of brokenness. 
 God is a justif…

stuck in the pages

I was thinking today about how I read the Bible. I read the stories, the lists, the events, and I think on them and then teach from them. But I have no idea of the space and time that these events happened.

I know the historical situation surrounding most of the information. I know the teaching of some of the church fathers. What i don't get are the smells, the sounds, the dust, and sweat, the tension of the participants, the emotion showing on their face, the hearts racing in their chests, the silence...

I read stories of a man building an Ark, telling his neighbors about a rain and flood to prepare for, loading up his wife and sons and daughters-in-law. All in the space of 3 chapters, 68 verses, 2 1/4 pages. Astounding!! This 100+ years of life and activity and people and animals and wood, and splinters and arguments between husbands and wives......whew. Exhausting.

I lose this wander, and awe and excitement when I just readrightthroughtryingtofinishachapter. Yet the richness an…

Why?

My friend Benny Nowell (http://www.sevensonline.org) told me once about a vision he had outside of a place called Freedom tunnel (ironically spelled Freedoom). He witnessed this girl fixing up her heroin to shoot. The vision was that Jesus was standing next to her, His hand on her shoulder eyes fixed on Benny and saying, "it's about time you got here." 
The message was that Jesus is waiting for us, for His disciples to arrive in the dark places so we can reflect His light.  Many times we get all caught up in taking Jesus to the lost; yet, the fact is HE is waiting for us there. HE is wanting to take me to the lost. 
I hear the question frequently, "why would a good God allow suffering; bad things to happen to good people; children to starve...?" 
The question I ask in return is, "Why are you allowing it to happen, what are you doing to help?"
We can no longer just sit by and "Occupy Space and Time" we have a responsibility. When Jesus was asked …

You!

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I have been between most of my life, between the world of church and “reality.” There has been very few times in my life where I have felt fully accepted, or where I had a sense of really fitting in.  I have felt a divide between the world of home, school, work and church. I have also felt I have stood most of my life between two men. Two men who I love with all that I am. Two men that I look up to but quite simply do not fully understand. I cannot understand how two men so much alike in my eyes, who I have so much affection, and who I long to make proud could be so far apart.  It has felt like therefore that I must offend one to love another, or that I need to bring them together. So i have lived this life of two worlds and they have collided.  So how do I develop grace to all now?  I'll start with this. 
Yesterday I wrote about second chances to men like Osama Bin-Laden. Today I move past that hypothetical situation and speak about actualities. 
I could write out a list of men, women…

Never Beyond? Now just wait a daggum minute

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This is a picture put out this week by a group called People Of The Second Chance. This is the latest in a series of posts about who may have wandered out past our limits of a second chance. Here is my initial reaction.

WHAT THE... now just hold on a stinking minute. Have you lost your ever-loving mind? Are you totally crazy? What could you have possibly be thinking? This is a mass murderer, a man who commissioned and planned the murders of men, women and children that refused to cow to his beliefs and demands. How in the world can you even entertain the idea of asking me to give a second chance to a... terroristic zealot like this man.

That was my internal conversation yesterday. Every time I looked at this picture I cringed inside. I even asked my friend Tanner, "do we offer a second chance even if it risks someones life?" Hey said "sometimes that is the price." Me: "that's a steep price." -end of conversation-

So today I was reading some of the com…

My focus needs more focus

A nationalistic Christianity is a toothless religion. This boils it all down to behaviors and laws. This has been seen before. The Jews used a faith based system and flooded themselves with so many laws and edicts they drowned. 
Rome eventually legalized Christianity, but the only thing that resulted was the Catholic church and Rome's demise. While officially a religious, pious culture; the deceit and depravity led to a destruction of holy living before the collapse of the empire. 
So what is it that we want as Christians in America today? What is it that we want of our leaders? Are we willing to demand the same things of ourselves? Having yielded the welfare of the poor to the government, do we now cede the moral welfare to a few elected officials with little to no accountability? Do we legislate change among men and women, or do we pray and lead lives of such holiness and Christ-like love that people have only two choices: embrace the truth or flee?  Will we continue to lament and …

Troublesome times are here...

There are times we have taken a large amount of joy in the idea that some will be in Hell. It is a somewhat soothing thought that men like Hitler, or Jim Jones might has received eternal torment for the innocent lives they consumed. It is like a grand game, or competition...it is "just" in our minds that men who commit grievous, gargantuan acts of violence against others need more than just our scorn. These who so violate our prescribed standards of good and evil, who tilt the ledger so drastically must; must absorb some form of everlasting punishment that surpasses this mortal sphere of life.
So, we have taken joy; and assigned weight to deeds and plans of men and women and graded on our own scale the hellish consequences deserved or level of grace dispensed.

Yet GOD knows more than I the level of depravity that would cause HIS wrath, and whether or not said wrath would last eternally. That is not my decision to make nor do I seek the authority to wield such power.

Here …

Saved for What?

My Dad

Bond Jennings “Gene” Bond, 79, of Wichita Falls, died Friday, September 16, 2011. The funeral service will be conducted at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, September 21, 2011, at the chapel of Owens and Brumley Funeral Home with Joe Glenn, Larry Suttle and Johnny Bond officiating. Interment with military honors will follow in Crestview Memorial Park. Arrangements are under the direction of Owens and Brumley Funeral Home of Wichita Falls. A son of the late Janie (McClure) and Johnny T. Bond, Gene was born on May 14, 1932, in Stigler, Oklahoma. He was a member of 10th and Broad Church of Christ. Gene served with the United States Air Force for four years during the Korean Conflict. He was a member of the VFW #8878, also serving as Commander, and later #2147. He was a member of the Military Order of the Cooties and Eagles. Gene served as District Commander of the VFW District 15 and as State Service Officer of the Texas VFW. He also served as secretary/treasurer of the Eagles Lodge. Gene devoted 40 yea…

Never Beyond

So what the heck am I supposed to write? There are many who have already given amazing thoughts to this idea of never beyond a second chance. What will my words be in addition? Not sure, but here we go...

The idea that we have a second chance does not mean that we start over, from scratch. It means that we now have a fresh slate going forward. We can drop all of our baggage here and walk on unhindered from our past screw-ups. We are the people who did those things, yet they no longer set our steps, burden our walk, or entangle our hearts. We are set free. GOD will not be sending out HIS wrath, or our friend will not seek revenge, and we need not carry the guilt one more step, stumble or stagger. We can now walk along with the opportunity to love well, live free and offer to someone else the grace we have received.

simply HIS,
jb

Adventure

This August I will begin the 42nd year of my journey on this planet if the LORD desires for me too. I am not necessarily some sort of remarkable man. I have not discovered a new continent, star or medicine. I probably will never be world renown, famous or be someone you would recognize for something all that grand. I have done things in my life that I have told no one but GOD, because HE was the only one who would replace my shame with HIS grace.
This all sounds like a great beginning for a mid-life crisis hunh?
But it is not!
It is just information.
What I have done is love my bride of 16 years faithfully, raise my children with the idea that they should fear GOD and serve HIM only, and for the last 5 years served as a minister for youth Littlefield, TX, a church in San Jose, CA, and college students in Wichita Falls, TX.
I probably have made a number of errors in all of the tasks I have undertaken, and I for sure am not the most patient of shepherds with GOD'S sheep. But I belie…

Freedom?

It's a trap! I want to stand at the entrances of sinful paths with a big stick and smack everyone and shout this warning.

The reality is that the freedom you think you gain with these "lifestyles" is just a big smokescreen. It is the art of misdirection, it is a cesspool made to look like a waterpark.

You see promises are made about the freedom of sex with whoever and whenever, glory is given to the heightened awareness of drug use and alcohol.

The truth if the matters is plain to witness though. Sex with whoever whenever leads to babies. Babies are not a limited demand item. These young boys ad girls demand that you feed, water, clean, support, invest, assist, repeat; for the many years to follow. For the first 10 years, these little ones are almost helpless, the for years 11-? They demand freedom that they are not able to responsibly earn.

Besides babies, there is the emotional tie that binds two people who engage in sex. See we are people of appetite; meaning if we like s…

miraculous

what happens when we live God's way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.

23-24Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified.

25-26Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare our…

Warning: Comments may be offensive to some...

Sometimes I think it would help if we were more ignorant and not so enlightened. We are a culture so full of information and self-confidence that we have trouble hearing truth and obeying. We talk, and question and debate the thoughts of Calvin vs Arminius vs. Luther vs Stone-Campbell vs blah, blah blah.
Truly, it reminds me of Paul's warning to the Corinthians in 1 Corinthians 1:10-13 I have a serious concern to bring up with you, my friends, using the authority of Jesus, our Master. I'll put it as urgently as I can: You must get along with each other. You must learn to be considerate of one another, cultivating a life in common.I bring this up because some from Chloe's family brought a most disturbing report to my attention—that you're fighting among yourselves! I'll tell you exactly what I was told: You're all picking sides, going around saying, "I'm on Paul's side," or "I'm for Apollos," or "Peter is my man," or &quo…

Abandoned...

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Sometimes I pass these cars along the highway with orange stickers stuck to the window warning the owner that the car is to be towed away and impounded. ABANDONED.
Each time I hear the word abandoned, I flinch...I mean this word has such a negative connotation in our society.
ABANDONED -: given up : forsaken is the second definition of abandoned. SYnonyms include - derelict, deserted, desolate, disused,forgotten, forsaken, rejected, vacant, vacated, void.

With a word like this, it is a tough word to find much good in, and nigh impossible to find comfort in.


But think about the call of Christ to crucify ourselves daily, to no longer conform to the pattern of the world (Romans12:2), to no longer desire or even be friends with the world (1 John 2:15; James 4:4)... This is living with abandone.
To abandon the things of the world could also be called repentance. To leave the things that our flesh desires and follow after the SPIRIT of GOD.

Abandoned also has another definition. wholly free fro…

Church Growth

Church by the numbers.

What if the way we have looked at church growth was shortsighted. What if just simply having people show up and observe and sing and tithe was not a real sign of growth? What if a mega church only had 50, 75 or even fewer members? What if we looked instead for evidence of the Holy Spirit being active and making us radically different? Jesus told the 12 that people would know they belonged to HIM if they "loved one another."

So...what are we known for?