man to man to God
week of June 27, 2010
Men’s Ministry newsletter of Path Of Life Ministries.
mission is to lead men to Jesus Christ and provide opportunity for
Christian men to grow in their faith and minister to others.
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Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a
deer, he enables me to go on the heights.” Habakkuk 3:19
is not an argument, and Christianity is not given us in the form
of logic but in the form of beauty and love.”
Underhill (1875-1941), The Light of Christ, New York: Longmans,
Green, 1949, p. 30
CHRISTIANS PREACH A SHALLOW, SMALL CHRIST
is Christianity? "It is Christ. Nothing more. Nothing less,"
say two popular authors. Yet Christians have made the gospel about
so many things other than Christ, Frank Viola and Leonard Sweet
sad truth is that the Jesus who is preached so often today is so
shallow, so small, and so uncaptivating that countless believers
are enthralled with countless other things," the authors
wrote in their newly released book, Jesus Manifesto: Restoring the
Supremacy and Sovereignty of Jesus Christ. Christians have
dethroned Jesus from His rightful place, they say.
and Sweet were burdened and concerned about the place that Jesus
Christ was getting in Christianity as a whole. So in 2009, they
wrote a 2,400-word essay, titled it "A Magna Carta," and
subtitled it "A Jesus Manifesto." .... Read this in full
SOCCER'S GOODSON SAYS 'GOD HAS BEEN FAITHFUL'
Christians have miraculous stories of how they came to know
Christ. Some have found themselves in the deepest, darkest moments
one could possibly imagine and realized there was nowhere left to
turn but to a Higher Power. Clarence Goodson, a defender on the US
World Cup team, was not one of those stories.
in a very tight-knit family with strong Christian values in
Alexandria, Va., Goodson recognized at an early age the difference
in right and wrong and was active in his local church. His parents
were strong influences in his life and provided him with a
Christian foundation to build his relationship with Christ.
does recall, however, one of the lower points in his life. Having
dreamt all his life of being a professional soccer player, Goodson
tried out for the Olympic Development Program and was cut from the
district team, which is the lowest level of the league.
Discouraged that his dreams may never come true, Goodson knew that
however disheartened and disappointed he may be at the time, God
was faithful.... Read this in full at
see: “US players open about their faith”
EARECKSON TADA HAS BREAST CANCER
and well-known disability advocate, artist and quadriplegic Joni
Eareckson Tada has been diagnosed with breast cancer.
news was made public by Doug Mazza, Joni and Friends International
Disability Center president and COO, following confirmation by her
Tada, Joni's husband of nearly 28 years, is very hopeful. "The
doctors have assured us that more advancements have been made in
the last five years in treating breast cancer then in the last 150
years," he said. "We are confident Joni is in very good
echoed Ken's sentiments. "I've often said that our
afflictions come from the hand of our all-wise and sovereign God,
who loves us and wants what is best for us. So, although cancer is
something new, I am content to receive from God whatever He deems
fit for me," she said. "Yes, it's alarming, but rest
assured that Ken and I are utterly convinced that God is going to
use this to stretch our faith, brighten our hope and strengthen
our witness to others." .... Read this in full at
see: “Special Message From Joni”
day you will read in the papers that D. L. Moody, of East
Northfield, is dead. Don't you believe a word of it! At that
moment I shall be more alive than I am now. I shall have gone up
higher, that is all; out of this old clay tenement into a house
that is immortal, a body that death cannot touch, that sin cannot
taint, a body like unto His own glorious body. I was born of the
flesh in 1837. I was born of the Spirit in 1856. That which is
born of the flesh may die. That which is born of the Spirit will
Dwight Lyman Moody (1837-1899), quoted in
The Shorter Life of D. L. Moody, v. 1, Paul Dwight Moody &
Arthur Percy Fit, Chicago: The Bible Institute Colportage
Association, 1900, p. 9
WITH JOHN MAXWELL: RELATIONSHIPS AND RESPECT
Maxwell is one of the best-known leadership experts in the world,
and his books have sold over 13 million copies. In this interview,
Maxwell talks about his experiences in the corporate world.
You do a lot of work in the corporate area, as well as in the
Christian leadership community; so you really have a foot in two
different worlds. Are there some things you've learned about
connecting in that corporate world and culture that can be
translated into our church world as pastors seek to communicate?
Certainly. First, the hardest job I've ever had was not learning
how to connect. The hardest job I've ever had was when I left that
world and went into the secular world.
the Christian world, the key word is relationship. A few moments
ago, you got on the phone and called me. We haven't talked to each
other for a little time, but immediately it's like I talked to you
yesterday. We picked right up. "How are you doing, Michael?"
"John, how's it going?" We have this relationship
because of Jesus Christ and what He's done in our lives; we're
brothers in the Lord, and it's wonderful. It's what makes the body
of Christ so beautiful.
the corporate community, the key word isn't relationship. The key
word is respect. Almost all negotiating, deals, learning is based
on respect. Until the corporate community respects you, it won't
give you an ear and certainly not its heart. It guards its heart
pretty closely anyway; so what I realized when I got in that world
is that I had to gain respect. I had to teach some things people
in that world didn't know. I had to help them with some practices
in their business that would work, and I had to work very hard to
get respect.... Read this in full at
BULLETS AND GOD’S CONTROL
goes up must come down. As our family recently discovered, that
includes a .40-caliber bullet.
daughter Meredith, driving a car she had borrowed from a cousin
for a month-long summer job, was preparing to return to Fort Worth
after enjoying Father’s Day weekend with us. I volunteered
to back her car out the driveway. As I looked over my shoulder to
steer the car through the gate, I noticed the back window looked
like a transparent jigsaw puzzle rather than clear glass.
got out to investigate and there it was -- a dark bullet hole at
the center of a milky-white circle in the tinted glass. That’s
not a good way to start your week.... Read this in full at
WITH THE OFFICE CHAPLAIN
growing number of companies are offering the services of chaplains
in the workplace. Managers say many employees who wouldn't think
of calling a therapist or an employee-assistance program will
willingly turn to a chaplain. Executives at Tyson Foods Inc.,
which employs 120 chaplains serving a work force of 117,000, say
they believe the service reduces turnover. Other companies
contract with chaplain-placement services to handle workplace
disruptions that managers can't.
the military-chaplain model, these roving spiritual advisers
typically visit offices or factories weekly, greeting employees,
hanging out in the break room, handing out business cards and
meeting one-on-one with workers. But they're also on-call 24/7, so
chaplains rush to hospitals, restaurants or homes on request,
providing comfort and support free of charge to employees.
perform weddings or funerals for people who have no one else to do
so. And they pray with employees over problems from medical or
marital crises to job loss, addiction and financial woes, holding
the information in confidence. The Rev. Warren Wetherbee, a
corporate chaplain in LaCrosse, Wis., says he sometimes helps
employees make a budget if asked, or sits with them while they
decide to cut up their credit cards.
chaplain services reflect a growing openness about spirituality in
the workplace and an increasing desire among workers to express
their faith at work. Some 74% of Americans say faith is becoming
more important in their lives, based on a 2008 survey of 1,004
adults by the Barna Group, a Ventura, Calif., research company.
Although membership in churches and other religious organizations
has been falling for years, 71% of U.S. adults say they have
developed their own slate of religious beliefs, rather than
accepting the tenets of a particular faith or religious group....
Read this in full at
POLL: 2 IN
5 EVANGELICAL LEADERS DRINK ALCOHOL
percent of evangelical leaders said they "socially drink
alcohol," according to a new monthly poll. Many of them added
that they only drink "in moderation," "on special
occasion," or "infrequently." And they noted that
they do so only with those who share similar views on alcohol
poll was based on responses from the Board of Directors of the
National Association of Evangelicals, including the CEOs of
denominations and representatives of a broad array of evangelical
organizations. Among the majority who said they did not consume
alcohol, the common reason for abstinence was not because they
believe it is sinful to drink.... Read this in full at
dependability is appreciated by everyone. Brilliant display of
ability and occasional genius are seriously discounted if the
follow-through of reliable character is lacking. Those who are
outstanding for courage and devotion under the tension of an
emergency and who, at the same time, prove reliable in the long,
strong, steady pull are the ones whom great responsibility may be
placed with confidence.”
Dr. Henry Brandt
POLITICS AND RELIGION FORGED CHRISTIAN ORTHODOXY. A REVIEW OF
PHILIP JENKINS' LATEST BOOK 'JESUS WARS.'
Roger E. Olson
you hungry for a rip-roaring tale of theological intrigue filled
with conspiracies, Byzantine plots, murder, and mayhem? Or are you
longing for a solid, informative, and accurate history of the
development of Christian orthodoxy? If your answer is yes to both,
Philip Jenkins's Jesus Wars: How Four Patriarchs, Three Queens,
and Two Emperors Decided What Christians Would Believe for the
Next 1,500 Years (HarperOne) is your book. The church historian's
latest is a page-turner for anyone even remotely interested in the
history of Christianity and/or the Roman Empire.
Wars recounts in vivid detail the centuries-long struggle to
define and enforce the orthodox doctrine of the person of Jesus
Christ. The story begins in fourth-century Constantinople, where
Roman emperor Theodosius I made Christianity the official religion
of the empire and called a council of all Christian bishops to
settle once and for all the controversies about Jesus' humanity
from settling the matter, however, Constantinople I (First Council
of Constantinople, A.D. 381) engendered a dispute about Christ
that eventually led to the fall of the Roman Empire and permanent
divisions between Christians. Jenkins is well known as a scholar
of Christianity's rise in the "Global South," a catchall
for the non-Western world. In Jesus Wars, he explains the origins
of some little-known (to Westerners) branches of Christianity,
including the churches of Ethiopia, Egypt, Syria, Armenia, and
Persia (roughly modern Iraq and Iran).
all Christians since Constantinople I have agreed that Jesus
Christ was and is in some sense both human and divine. But the
question of how that truth is to be expressed and defended led to
the first killings of heretics by Christians. The great Christian
cities of Antioch and Alexandria fell into political and religious
rivalry over the fine points of Christology. Each city also wanted
stronger influence in the new imperial capital, Constantinople,
and so plotted to overthrow the city's patriarchs and replace them
with their own favorite sons.... Read this in full at
Bible puts forward two different kinds of faith. The one kind -
bold, childlike faith - impressed Jesus, and several times such
faith from the most unlikely sources "astonished" him.
Another kind, I term fidelity, a hang-on-by-the-fingernails faith
against all odds, no matter the cost. Abraham, Joseph, Job, and
others of God's favorites in the Old Testament demonstrated this
faith, and the tribute in Hebrews 11 honors them.
all its benefits, though, childlike faith has one major flaw: it
stakes everything on the future, on a desired change. For some,
that change never comes. If you wait until you are well or
employed or married or whatever new state you are asking for, you
may never get there. I have learned that I have no time in which
to live out Christ's life other than now. This very moment is all
I can count on.
one of his letters Paul described himself as afflicted but not
crushed, perplexed but not driven to despair, persecuted but not
forsaken, struck down but not destroyed. He learned a different
level of faith, one that does not remove difficulty but
nevertheless withstands, a fidelity in which weakness transforms
into strength and prayers for healing melt into prayers of
Philip Yancey from the book Prayer
EVANGELICAL: WE NEED TO GET TO KNOW MUSLIMS
Bob Roberts meets with Muslims around the world, he is always
introduced as an evangelical Christian or a Baptist pastor from
Texas. He is upfront and transparent about who he is and what he
believes, he says. "At the end of the day for me as a
Christian, as a follower of Jesus, ... I believe Jesus was God, I
literally believe that he went to the cross, he died and was
resurrected. I can't compromise on that," he said June 17 at
a forum on evangelicals and Muslims.
of Northwood Church in Keller, Texas, Roberts has been working
with Muslims for eight years now. And it's been eight years since
he stopped fearing Muslims and started building relationships with
those he knew very little about. While working in Afghanistan on
humanitarian projects he realized evangelicals lacked the "people
to people diplomacy" that former president Dwight Eisenhower
promoted.... Read this in full at
MARTYR NATE SAINT’S HOUSE SET FOR RESTORATION
house in Shell Mera, Ecuador, that MAF missionary martyr Nate
Saint built in 1948 still stands, but it's crumbling from termites
and the daily inch of rain that deluges the eastern Andean
Nevins of the non-profit construction ministry Fuel the Mission
has started to change that. On June 15 Nevins and teams of
Ecuadoran and North American workers began the loving labor of
restoring the historic building. “MAF holds so dear the
history of Nate Saint's work,” said MAF President John Boyd.
“This major undertaking to restore the house that Nate built
with a team of missionaries is so meaningful to MAF, not just for
today, but for the future.
people are taking an interest in Nate Saint and his sacrifice. I
know the Lord is going to use this project to inspire the next
generation to serve the cause of Christ to the ends of the earth.”
.... Read this in full at
TRAILER FOR 'VOYAGE OF THE DAWN TREADER' HITS WEB
first official trailer for the 3rd movie installment of the
“Chronicles of Narnia” made its public debut June 17,
giving fans a peak at what some thought wasn't going to be after
Walt Disney Pictures abandoned ship.
at midnight, the 2-minute trailer for "The Voyage of the Dawn
Treader" beckons Narnia fans to “Return to Hope,”
“Return to Magic,” and “Return to Narnia”
5 years after the first film hit theaters to positive reviews and
box office success. “You have returned for a reason. Your
adventure begins now,” says the series’ central
character, Aslan, in the trailer.
returning for the voyage are Pevensie siblings Edmund and Lucy,
and King (formerly Prince) Caspian. Not on board for the third
installment, however, is Walt Disney Pictures, which announced in
2008 -- just days before Christmas -- that it would not be
co-producing and co-financing “Dawn Treader,” citing
"budgetary considerations and other logistics" as
reasons behind the decision.... Read this in full and view the
not lie to one another, seeing that you have stripped off the old
self with its practices and have clothed yourselves with the new
self, which is being renewed in knowledge according to the image
of its creator. In that renewal there is no longer Greek and Jew,
circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and
free; but Christ is all and in all!”
takes men's hearty desires and will, instead of the deed, where
they have not power to fulfill them; but He never took the bare
deed instead of the will.”
Richard Baxter (1615-1691),
Directions and Persuasions to a Sound Conversion, in The Practical
Works of Richard Baxter, v. VIII, London: J. Duncan, 1830, p. 174
COMMUNION OF REFORMED CHURCHES IS BORN
than 80 million Reformed Christians in 108 countries around the
world formally united June 18 when the World Alliance of Reformed
Churches (WARC) and the Reformed Ecumenical Council (REC) approved
articles of union and a constitution bringing them together as the
World Communion of Reformed Churches (WCRC)
The merger of the two organizations took place at the Uniting
General Council, which met at Calvin College in Grand Rapids,
the long-awaited merger went through, afternoon discussion on
passage of a constitution and bylaws grew lively and took longer
than planned over the issue of representation of women on
committees and in leadership positions in the new body. "We
had a very vigorous and intense conversation. It may have taken us
longer than we thought it would," but God remained with
delegates and the Holy Spirit helped to guide the discussion, said
Clifton Kirkpatrick, president of WARC who chaired the discussions
for his organization that led to the formation of the WCRC....
Read this in full at
guidance of the Spirit is generally by gentle suggestions or
drawings, and not in violent pushes; and it requires great
childlikeness of heart to be faithful to it. The secret of being
made willing lies in a definite giving up of our will. As soon as
we put our will on to God's side, He immediately takes possession
of it and begins to work in us to will and to do of His good
Hannah Whitall Smith (1832-1911), Christian's
Secret of a Holy Life, M. E. Dieter, ed., Grand Rapids, Mich.:
Zondervan 1994, p. 134
REGULATING TOBACCO TAKES EFFECT
of landmark legislation regulating tobacco products took effect
June 22, the first anniversary of President Obama signing it into
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had implemented parts of the
Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act during the last
year, but some aspects of the law giving the agency authority to
regulate tobacco products for the first time did not become
effective until its initial anniversary. These newly implemented
Legal enforcement of FDA rules that restrict the sale and
marketing of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco to protect the
health of children and young people;
Prohibition on advertising and labeling of tobacco products with
the descriptions "light," "low" or "mild;"
Display of larger health warnings in advertising for and packaging
of smokeless tobacco products.... Read this in full at
CELEBRATES GAY DADS ON FATHER'S DAY
Day and Father's Day might spark thoughts of the traditional
family, but President Obama has commemorated both holidays this
year by applauding homosexual parenting -- a first for a
Father's Day proclamation included words that both liberals and
conservatives liked -- for instance, referencing how "government
cannot fill" the role of an absent father -- but also
included this sentence: "Nurturing families come in many
forms, and children may be raised by a father and mother, a single
father, two fathers, a step father, a grandfather, or caring
guardian." His Mother's Day proclamation in May included
nearly identical language and talked about how "nurturing
families" can involve "two mothers." .... Read this
in full at
NEO-PAGANS SEE STONEHENGE SOLSTICE
of New Agers and neo-pagans danced and whooped in delight June 21
as a bright early morning sun rose above the ancient stone circle
Stonehenge, marking the summer solstice. About 20,000 people
crowded the prehistoric site on Salisbury Plain, southern England,
to see the sunrise at 4:52 A.M. (1152EST), following an annual
event typically draws thousands of alternative-minded revelers to
the monument, as they wait for dawn at the Heel Stone, a
pockmarked pillar just outside the circle proper, which aligns
with the rising sun.
previous recent years, when the sunrise has been obscured by cloud
— the bright sun bathed the monument in orange and gold....
Read this in full at
is directed against forces of evil rather than against persons who
happen to be doing the evil. It is evil that the nonviolent
resister seeks to defeat, not the persons victimized by evil.”
Martin Luther King Jr., from his book Stride Toward Freedom
the mountains were born or you brought forth the earth and the
world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. For a thousand
years in your sight are like a day that has just gone by, or like
a watch in the night.”
WEEK'S HYMN: GRACIOUS SPIRIT, HOLY GHOST
Christopher Wordsworth, 1862
Friedrich Filitz, 1847
Spirit, Holy Ghost,
by Thee we covet most
Thy gifts of Pentecost
that mountains could remove,
of earth or heaven above,
I as a martyr bleed,
my goods the poor to feed,
is vain—if Love I need;
give us Love.
is kind, and suffers long
is meek, and thinks no wrong,
than death itself more strong;
give us Love.
will fade away,
in the light of day,
will ever with us stay;
give us Love.
will vanish into sight;
be emptied in delight;
in heaven will shine more bright;
give us Love.
and Hope and Love we see
hand in hand agree;
the greatest of the three,
the best, is Love.
Thy gold and silver wing
on us, who to Thee sing,
Prayer is especially to be used in temptation to private sin. ‘O
almighty God, infinite and eternal, Thou fillest all things with
Thy presence; Thou art every where by thy essence and by Thy
power; in heaven by glory, in holy places by Thy grace and favour,
in the hearts of Thy servants by Thy Spirit, in the consciences of
all men by Thy testimony and observation of us. Teach me to walk
always as in Thy presence, to fear Thy majesty, to reverence Thy
wisdom and omniscience; that I may never dare to commit any
indecency in the eye of my Lord and my Judge; but that I may with
so much care and reverence demean myself that my Judge may not be
my accuser, but my advocate; that I, expressing the belief of Thy
presence here by careful walking, may feel the effects of it in
the participation of eternal glory, through Jesus Christ. Amen.’”
Jeremy Taylor (1613-1667), Holy Living , in The Whole Works
of the Right Rev. Jeremy Taylor, D.D., v. III, London: Longman,
Brown, Green & Longmans, 1847, p. 43
PRAY FOR PERSECUTED
the following list as your daily prayer guide. Think of a brother
or situation that applies and lift them up in prayer.
agreeing in prayer with you for God’s blessings to overtake
God and man
Be in God’s will
Raises or bonuses
Checks in the mail
Gifts & surprises
Bills decrease while blessings increase
all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou
shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God" (Deut.
[As you travel on business or vacation, let me know
if you'd like the church guys to pray for your safety and
spiritual effectiveness. I'll add your name to the list for the
time you'll be away.]
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bonds of matrimony are a good investment, but only when the
interest is kept up.
Frank Coleman, Editor
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CONNECTIONS is a periodic newsletter of
announcements, news, recommendations, articles, and other
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result in maximizing the potential we all have in Christ.
Min. Frank Coleman, 773-410-1483, firstname.lastname@example.org
if you'd like to participate in a men's discipleship program.
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