Saturday, September 15, 2007

And Here is the Lesson!

here's the lesson I'll be giving in Sunday school. I will be preaching a shorter version tonite downtown.
Goodnite everybody!

1 Thessalonians 1

1. What are the three things that Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy remember before God about the Thessalonians? 1 Thessalonians 1:2, 3

2. How did they receive the Gospel? 1 Thessalonians 1:5

3. Why is the way they received the Gospel important to their congregation? 1 Thessalonians 1:4

4. What is the Job of the Holy Spirit in the world and to the believers?
John 16:7-14

5. Describe the faith of the Thessalonians. 1 Thessalonians 1:5-8

6. How did the world regard the Thessalonians? 1 Thessalonians 1:8

7. What kind of life did they have before they converted to Christianity?
1 Thessalonians 1:9

8. When they turned from their former lives, what life did they begin to live? 1 Thessalonians 1:10


Friday, September 14, 2007


Ok, it's not of BASIC, but it is still relevant. I found this by simply googling "Homeless News" without the quotes, and finding a Blog that is about Homeless news.

Here's the video:

It's pretty good, but like anything, I don't agree with everything the video assumes. It's easy to assume that money is the primary way to fix homelessness, but I think the primary emphasis needs to be on prevention, and the problems that lead to homelessness are more complicated than mere money. Not to say there could be more money spent on the issue, just that there are bigger fish to fry, like world view transformation, justice under the law, personal sin. It's more important to get someone out of their comfort zone, both homeless and not, and get them to a place where they are actively seeking and doing God's will than it is to simply increase spending. If you are not homeless, and you are doing God's will*, I think you will find that something changes you to the point where homelessness stops being the problem, and homeless people are blessed by you, and they can turn and bless God because of you.

I think I want to write more about that, but for now, just sit and think about it. Sunday I'll be going downtown, Saturday I'll post my lesson for the trip, which is based on the lesson I'll be giving this Sunday in Sunday school at Highlands Church of Christ in Lakeland, FL.
Until Next Time!

*I include this post to Arron Chamber's entry on a new program because I really like the WATER concept he is using for his young adults ministry. It's something that the whole church needs to read, understand, and realize that this is what they've been thinking all along. The part about worship really says something special to me. Read it, and the rest of his bloggings too.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Creating Perspective

Much of what BASIC does involves "creating perspective".

Ok, let me define that: Creating perspective is the art and science of giving people the chance to remove their assumptions about anything. Once their assumptions are removed, and they have a chance to re-examine a situation and consider a different way of viewing the situation, then perspective is created. The goal is to understand that no one person knows everything, and that knowing everything about a situation is the only way one person can permanently judge someone's actions as being damning or liberating. Ultimately, this should lead to a service producing humility where one can obey the command to display a sincere love to others, even our enemies. Romans 12:9-13 says:
9Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

I must admit, I have a hard time displaying love toward everyone. Seems like if I have a chance to ignore the situation of someone who either doesn't like me, or if I can find a reason to not like them, then I will ignore their situation, or pose some cutesy little paradigm to their situation that neatly absolves me from responsibility to help them overcome their sin.

What I need is perspective.

If I had the right perspective I would understand who my real enemies are. A couple of posts ago I asked a question about my enemies. I don't remember mentioning the names on that list. I mean, I suppose the only people who are my enemies are the ones who directly oppose the spread of the message of God. They are not drug addicts, prostitutes, murderers, adulterers, abortion doctors, or other "sinners" that many preachers preach against. I would say that most muslims are not "my enemy" because they are at least willing to talk to Christians and hear us out. This article is not about who is and is not my enemies though, I'm writing this so that hopefully you will understand what I mean when I talk about creating perspective.

What perspective do you need?

I know homeless people who need the perspective that they need to know me before they make demands of me. There may be very good reasons why I don't hand out money to them, even thought that's what they say they need. I know people with money who need perspective about homeless people, that they are not just hopeless alcoholics without morality. I know liberals who need to understand that Jesus really does need to be involved in the process of restoration. I have never met anyone who didn't have a comfort zone from which they examined the whole world, and thus missed out on something that is so obvious;

When you have the right perspective.