Thursday, March 30, 2006

Back in 1999 a group of Jesus followers knew something drastic needed to happen to help Christendom. Thus, the 24-7 prayer movement began. Founded in Europe, this movement dedicated continual prayer throughout day and night for a consecutive month hoping to spurn on revival. The movement was so successful that it lasted for more than a month, more than a year, and continues even today.

On Sunday, April 2nd, the movement awakens in Arizona. For 24 hours during the week of April 2-9, Jesus followers will be lifting up Arizona to the Lord. The focus will be on the campus of Arizona State University. Having gone to that school for my undergrad work, I know it needs the prayer. Even though ASU is the focus, prayer will be lifted up for Phoenix in general also.

History has shown us that God wants prayer and responds to prayer. Will you join us? Anyone interested in mobilizing for this event please contact me via email or by "commenting" on this blog. I plan on going down every day and we can hash out times that everyone can go. Prayer blocs last for an hour. Having read the book about this prayer movement, Red Moon Rising, I can promise you God will meet us there and none of us will ever be the same........

For more info visit.....,

Monday, March 27, 2006

Falling In Love

Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus? This question is posed countless times as Evangelicals try to find out the status of one's soul. This is something I have always struggled with. As I learned in seminary, the idea of having a personal relationship with Christ (or inviting Him into your heart) is a foreign concept biblically. Now before you brand me as a heretic, hear me out.

Repentance and belief. This is the biblical way to eternal salvation. So, for years I would sleepwalk through my faith journey knowing that I BELIEVED in Jesus and what He had done for me and also recognized I was a sinner in need of REPENTANCE. But I never fully grasped what it meant to know Jesus intimately. You see, even though my belief and repentance was enough to secure me to heaven as a final destination, it never filled me up with this idea of being in love with God, only duty and obligation. And as we all can attest, that type of faith only lasts for so long.

I fought this for a long time. I figured that since the Bible specifically does not call us into a personal relationship with Christ (in those terms) then I really did not need to pursue it, even though countless people around me were experiencing it. I also had people tell me it was because I was raised without a father and thus lost the intimate way of dealing with the Lord. It was a true mess I tell ya. All I know is that my faith lacked something.....And I knew what it was: I was not in love with God, I loved Him, but I was not in love with Him.

Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. This will sound so simple, but for me it had escaped me for so long. My life radically changed when I found this simple truth. To have a personal relationship with Christ is to try to pattern your life after His teachings. Hello! It is so easy, but I had lacked the devotion to try my hardest to live like Jesus. Now I try hard to do this. I fail a lot and I succeed also, but I can finally say that this revelation of trying to pattern my life after Jesus has led me to fall in love with Him. Its a great feeling.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Have you met my mother.......Hannah?

First off, as most of you know, my mother's name is not Hannah. It is JoAnn, but after reading through 1 Samuel I couldn't help but notice the similarities and I had to give my mommy props. 1 Samuel opens with an account of a woman named Hannah who was barren and unable to have kids, as was thought by my mother who adopted me in 1978 (she later was able to have kids...thank God..because now I have the best brother and sister in the world).

So, Hannah pleaded with the Lord for a child and the Lord "remembered her" (1 sam. 1:19) and blessed her with a son, Samuel. Hannah was overcome with joy and thankfulness. Being an obvious woman of God, she recognized that the child was not her's but rather the Lord's and uttered this remarkable bit. "For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. Therefore I also have lent him to the Lord; as long has he lives he shall be lent to the Lord." (1 Sam. 1:27-28)

I couldn't help but think of my mother upon reading this. I am going away to a place that is considered dangerous and "impossible" to many. This no doubt scares my mother (and for that matter all of my family) but she understands what also Hannah did. She has given me over to the Lord, knowing that this is my calling in life. That takes great faith.

I know there are a lot of "Hannah's" out there. My brother Collin's mother is another Hannah. Whether it be mother's who watch their sons or daughters go off to military service, missions, or anything like is a powerful thing. I am glad that 1 Samuel starts off with this account. It makes the story much more real and practical. Thank you to all the Hannah's out there.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Did You Know......

20% of the population in the developed nations, consume 86% of the world’s goods.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Joshua was "tight"...God's "tighter".

Ok. So. I just got done reading through the book of Joshua again. The first and most important thing I realized: Joshua was a pimp, but God's a bigger one. So, check this out. Joshua breezes through the Canaanites no problem, right. The South. The North. Whatever, he got 'em. In fact Joshua 12 lists the kings conquered earlier by Moses which were 2, and as if to say, that was nice but look at this, it then goes on to discuss the 31 ! kings Joshua conquered. So, picture it. Joshua is in total control. You have to admit the Israelites were probably like...this guy is good man!, did you see him kick the king of Geder's butt! They were in awe with him, Im sure of it.

Then Joshua is close to dying. He knows the end is near. What would you be doing if you were a great king? I would probably be eating fruit and "sitting like royalty" as someone used to say I like to do. I would be figuring out my net worth, you know stuff like that. But Joshua, he exhorts Israel big time (Josh. 23). He tells them to hold fast to the Book of Law and not turn towards foreign idols. He just lays into his countrymen. He even tells them that WHEN (not if) you transgress the Lord your God He will inflict harmful things on you and goes on and on about it. How is that for straight talk?!?! Finally, the book wraps up with this: "Israel served the Lord all the days of Joshua". Quite a nice run for ole Joshua.

But here is the thing. No doubt Joshua was a good man, but what I love about the book of Joshua is that it is clear who is The Man in all of this. God. Yes, Joshua was used by Him to conquer and receive the promise, but God is the one who makes the sun stand still (Josh. 10), and "routed all before Israel" (Josh. 10:10), and was the deliverer. It was God's promise that was fulfilled upon the receiving of the land (Josh. 21). God was responsible for all of this and the author of Joshua makes that abundantly clear. So to that, thank you Lord.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Did You Know.....

One of my favorite shows of all-time, SportsCenter, used to give its faithful watchers a daily dose of "Did You Know". This information would likely be obscure facts about something in the sports world that even the most educated sports buff would not know. Well, now I am taking up the pastime forgotten by ESPN, except mine will not be daily, it will be weekly, and I will not fill your heads with useless sports trivia but, instead, social issues.

"Did You Know"....According to UNICEF, 30,000 children die each day due to poverty. "And they die quietly in some of the poorest villages on earth, far removed from the scrutiny and the conscience of the world. Being meek and weak in life makes these dying multitudes even more invisible in death."
That is about 210,000 children each week, or just under 11 million children under five years of age, each year.

Time for action Christendom.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Celibacy.....(what's that?!?!)

So, I thought I would tackle a light, non-controversial issue first....Haha. I really do not have any type of agenda in addressing celibacy initially. I am a Christian that is socially concerned; concerned with the way Christendom is living out the teachings of Jesus. This is just one aspect of many facets of our world that needs attention.

God is love, and being a part if being created in God's image means knowing love. We are designed to love, and will be unhappy and unsatisfied until we know deep love within our hearts. This type of love is found in a spiritual union with God first and foremost. Unless we first experience the luxurious love of God, human love will only be frailed and flawed.

Is it wrong to marry? Of course not. It can be a very God-centered endeavor and I know of many couples who have flourished in this union. The problem I have with marriage is the Western mindset that marriage is the "end all" for many Christians. Celibacy is not even talked about in the church or in other religious institutions. That is a problem. Thus, many never know the beautiful life of celibacy. Celibacy can give one a spiritual focus, a carefree abandon, and a physical mobility that provide the opportunity to focus solely on God and His work. Monks followed this calling because most of them thought marriage would distract them from worshipping God.

So, I know you are all wondering.......No, I have not claimed the life of celibacy. But it is an issue I have wrestled with God about and I do honestly feel that every single person should tackle this issue and most singles I know will or do not do it. There should be more interaction on this topic. What does it mean to be a follower of Jesus? The Word tells us that our goal is to become more like Jesus. Well, Jesus was single. Why are Evangelicals passing over this fact so easily; implying that it is not relevant to our lives.

Marriage is a beautiful thing. An experience most of us will have and is an institution honored by God. The problem with it is that our wives or our husbands can replace God in our hierarchy of love, affection and devotion. I see this happening all around. This is the dangerous place to be.......Ok, I'm ready for the windfall...Haha.

Matthew 19:12.....and there are those who have made themselves eunuchs (celibate) for the kingdom of heaven's sake. The one who can accept this should accept this. --Jesus

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

An Ordinary Radical

Ordinary.....In the sense that I do not think I am better than anyone else.

Radical.....In the sense that I want to realize what it means to truly love, to truly FOLLOW Jesus, not just believe He existed.

So, I am an Ordinary Radical. A person who chooses to live in a radical way. I clarify that I am NOT some kinda Saint who has a monopoly on radicalness (is this even a word), because that is just vain, but I am also NOT a person who is satisfied with the way things are.

I look forward to sharing life together......