Radical

Here’s a book I’m looking forward to reading: Radical by David Platt

Brent @ Holiday at the Sea summarizes the book like this:

Always pointing to Jesus, Platt reminds us that, what we now call “radical” is simply what Jesus expects of all of His followers. The answer is not to try harder but draw closer to Jesus. The book culminates in what Platt calls the Radical Experiment, calling people to one year of:

  1. Pray for the entire world
  2. Read through the entire Word
  3. Sacrifice your money for a specific purpose
  4. Spend your time in another context
  5. Commit your life to multiplying community

While this list initially seems like quite a bit for most people, closer examination simply reveals it to be biblical living. If that’s what the world now calls “radical,” then so be it. But it’s time that we realize that there is no other way of living if we truly desire to follow Jesus. Here is Platt introducing the book:

Via: Holiday at the Sea

What Did You Sign Up For?

Ernest Shackleton’s 1907 ad in London’s Times, recruiting a crew to sail with him on his exploration of the South Pole:

Wanted. Men for hazardous journey.
Low wages. Bitter cold.
Long hours of complete darkness.
Safe return doubtful.
Honor and recognition in the event of success.

Sounds like another ad:

And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. (LK 9.23-24)

We didn’t sign up for easy lives.  But afterward there will be glory.

Copied from The Blazing Center

In times like these, it helps to remember that I’m to die daily to my self and my desires, and follow after Jesus. It’s not easy and I don’t see a future where it gets easier, this journey is arduous and it’s supposed to be (with varying levels of difficulty), because it’s supposed to prepare me for an eternal life with my King. In the end victory will come, my flesh, my pride, my own derived self worth, will all be vanquished, and all that will be left will be Him, His Word and His love.

The Manly Campout

This past weekend, the men of Living Waters had a great time camping outside like the mighty (modern) woodsmen that God created us to be (thanks to Pastor Joe for your constant support and for the awesome tents).

We had the best Bar-B-Q ribs (thanks to our chef Angel) for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Ok I might have exaderated a bit, but they were darn good ribs.

Our fire was roaring (thanks to Ron) and there might have even been a bit of jumping over the fire to prove once and for all just how manly we were.

Our conversations had depth (thanks to Pastor Jay) and plenty of laughs (thanks to a single night of camping six years ago).

We had the pleasure of introducing one of our brothers to the wonders of camping plenty (thanks to David’s new wife for allowing him to come).

Our day was filled with time on the water, floating down a lazy river, for some much need rest and relaxation  (thanks to Jeff for always being ready to get wet).

Even in the midst of the fun and the food, we were challenged (thanks to Scotty) to seek God through quiet time or long walks through the tick infested woods. And he spoke to us….

He called us out, telling us that we are calling ourselves kings without actually acting like them.

He raised the bar, telling us to throw off the dunce caps the world had given us, and put on the crowns that he was giving us.

Then he crowned us with new crowns, not crowns of our own making or some old crown we just picked up off the ground, but a new crown that God created.

From here on out, the world will be different because there will be ten Godly men ruling and reigning the way God intended them to.

Thank you, Lord, for the great out doors that you created for us to explore, and for the beauty and power therein that draws us closer to you.  Thank you, Lord, for keeping us safe (even from ourselves). Thank you, Lord, for speaking to us.

Thank you, Lord, for loving and understanding wives and families.

Thank your, Lord, for good friends and strong brothers.

More Pics here…

Dreams: Bridge

In this one Arielle and I were flying back and forth between what we called in the dream Columbia Florida it was like an island off the coast. Ari recommended that I try the bridge next time. So I rented a car and started driving. The bridge was normal at first but after a few mins it got crazy I was doing loops and going upside down and crazy fast. It got to the point where I was going so fast that it felt as if I had left the car behind and was just flying along. About half way across there was a big chunk of the bridge missing and so I ended up in the water. In the water I started swimming intending to finish my journey. Along the way I found a big floating box that I was able to climb on top of and then hop from box to box till I was able to get back up on to the bridge and from there I was able to get to the other side. I got there around the time the sun was setting and my rental car was waiting for me right next to my hotel. Which was a nice spanish style place.

Book Review: Fathered By God

Books seem to have the most profound impact on my life. Especially when it comes to changing my mindset or the way I view the world around me. In recent years books like Driven by Eternity by John Bevere and Wild at Heart by John Eldredge have taken me from the brink of despair to a land full of hope and life. It’s hard not to understate how big of an impact these two books in particular have impacted me. Driven By Eternity helped me through a difficult time after my father’s death. And Wild at Heart helped me navigate the tricky time when a new love was blossoming by helping me to grow as a man, secure that I had what it takes to be a lover and a good husband. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not the books themselves or even the authors that change my life, but the Holy Spirit working through the book to reveal the truth.

I say all that so that when I say that this book rates right up there with these other life changing books, you’ll have a real sense of what that statement means to me. But it wasn’t just the book that had such a big impact it was the mighty men of God that took this journey with me. Every week we would gather to watch the DVD session for that week, and then sit around for a few hours discussing it. It was from these discussions that what we had just learned about became real. It wasn’t just theory anymore it was actively being applied to our daily lives, and that made it powerful.

The book is broken up into 3 parts, the first two chapters establish a foundation for why this type of book is so neeeded today in this mordern world. The next 8 chapters take us through the various stages of masculinity starting with boyhood to the cowboy to the warrior and lover next the king and finally the sage. Along the way each stage gets broken down in how God is trying to father us and then how the masculine heart can be wound. The last chapter is really a challenge, calling men out and given them the driver through which they will take this journey and that is by being intentional.

The book starts off describing itself as a map. A map of the masculine journey and in a world where what it means to be a man and where good fathers are so rare this book couldn’t be more important.

To read more about this book and others by John check out Ransomed Heart ministries.