Connecting man to man to God
For week of July 11, 2010
Issue 312

The Men’s Ministry newsletter of Path Of Life Ministries.
Our 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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I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
John 13:34

He who sacrifices his conscience to ambition burns a picture to obtain the ashes.”
Chinese Proverb

It takes guts to paraglide over the Antarctica, hike through remote jungles, and eat yak eyeballs for dinner. It also takes a little faith, according to a fun new profile of Bear Grylls, the star of Discovery Channel’s Man vs. Wild adventure show in the evangelical magazine Relevant. It turns out that Grylls, the appropriately-named star of the nature show, is a devout Christian.

Grylls told Relevent that he gets strength from God to take risks in nature. He says he sometimes feel as if he is “being held” when he is in the wild: “It’s about being strengthened. It’s about having a backbone run through you from the Person who made you. It’s about being able to climb the biggest mountains in the world with the Person who made them.” .... Read this in full at

In one Mexican drug cartel, mandatory reading now includes an American evangelical's best-seller. Drawing from an unlikely source, La Familia Michoacana (the Michoacan Family) bases part of its ideology on the book "Wild at Heart," by John Eldredge of the Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Ransomed Heart Ministries.

Eldredge sees the violent gang's use of his book in a positive light. "At first, I was really mad that they hijacked my book for their purposes," he said. "But on second thought ... maybe it will touch the hearts of the people who use (it)." .... Read this in full at

Once we understand Jesus in his own words and measure his claims and promises against our deepest needs, we will be surprised at just how personal and magnificent he really is -- the way and the truth and the life (John 14:6) -- rather than being merely the focus of deviously rendered fictitious story lines.

C. S. Lewis's conversion story, Surprised by Joy, describes this precisely. Lewis says that his greatest realization after he had finally recognized who Jesus is and what he offers to every human heart was that he had not come to a place or accepted a belief; he had come to a person -- and that person is the very person of God.

When we are close enough to the Jesus of history that we can look at history from his perspective, we actually see how mighty and strong he is.”
Ravi Zacharias, from his book Has Christianity Failed You?

With dozens of kids toting Florida Gator signable footballs or miniature orange football helmets, or decked out in blue jerseys with "15" on the back -- and grown-ups wearing their game-day Gator shirts -- it could have been October in Gainesville, Fla.

Instead, the site was First Redeemer Church, a sprawling, 4,000-member SBC church in Cumming, Ga., right in the middle of Georgia Bulldog and Georgia Tech country. The draw was Tim Tebow.

The 6-foot-3, 250-pound former University of Florida Gator, Heisman Trophy winner and new Denver Bronco quarterback spoke to 4,800 in two packed worship services and at a breakfast on Sunday, July 4 as part of the church's annual "God and Country Day."

Tebow, who turns 23 in August, was nattily dressed in a pink tie and gray pin-striped suit that failed to hide the bulging left arm that helped lead Florida to two national championships and two SEC championships. But Tebow, a member of First Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla., didn't come to talk about football.... Read this in full at

From the printing press to the radio to the Internet, advances in communication technology have almost always instigated rapid and profound changes in religious practice. The proliferation of mobile devices like the iPhone is currently provoking a similarly profound change, simultaneously allowing worshippers to craft a personal religious environment in an otherwise secular world, but also diluting many practices central to all religions.

Already, hundreds of iPhone apps allow parishioners to bring Bible quotes, Torah-chanting practice, and Buddhist prayer wheels wherever they go, allowing them to practice their religions in new times and spaces.

But some religious leaders worry that the inherently isolating and attention-diverting nature of smart phones has created a generation of worshippers unable to fully engage with the sublimation of self and quiet meditation that underlie both the Eastern and Western religious traditions.... Read this in full at

by Steven Lawson
Former players, university officials and friends eulogized John Wooden at a public memorial service Saturday June 26, 2010, remembering him as the greatest coach ever, a dedicated family man and a wise teacher who lived out the values of his renowned Pyramid of Success™, which includes the component of faith.

Coach Wooden was one in a billion,” said former player Jamaal Wilkes. “Coach lived a Christian life and he died a Christian death.”

Current UCLA men’s basketball coach Ben Howland described Wooden as a humble man. “His basic nature was love,” Howland said.

Wooden’s pastor, Dudley Rutherford, assured the crowd of 4,000 gathered at Pauley Pavilion on the UCLA campus, of his parishioner’s eternal destination. “Coach made it,” Rutherford declared. “He is there [in heaven] not because he was a good teacher . . . or won basketball games. He is in heaven because he put his faith and trust in Jesus Christ.”

Rutherford gestured to the record 10 NCAA national championship banners won by Wooden’s teams that hang in Pauley Pavilion [more championships won than any other coach ever], and said, “You can win one-thousand of these things and it will not get you into heaven. The only thing that gets you into heaven is putting your faith in Jesus Christ.” .... Read this in full at

by Rusty Wright
A while back, a friend emailed me a list of “Worst analogies written by high school students.” I began using them when presenting at writers and editors conferences. They were genuine side splitters, an English teacher’s nightmare. Here are some:

Her hair glistened in the rain like nose hair after a sneeze.”

From the attic came an unearthly howl. The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you're on vacation in another city and ‘Jeopardy!’ comes on at 7 p.m. instead of 7:30.”

The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn't.”

He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.”

Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.”

Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.”

John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.”

The thunder was ominous-sounding, much like the sound of a thin sheet of metal being shaken backstage during the storm scene in a play.”

His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.”

Recently, I decided to track down these shaky analogies’ original source. Turns out they weren’t culled from high school classrooms, but rather were published entries from The Style Invitational, a Washington Post humor writing contest. Apparently, Internet rumors morphed them into high school bloopers.... Read this in full at

Tullian Tchividijian is the grandson of evangelist Billy Graham. There, that’s out of the way. But maybe even more important in his bio is the fact that he took over the congregation of D. James Kennedy after his 2008 death. But it was a transition that did not go easily when a number of members, including Kennedy’s daughter, tried to oust Tchividijian.

The matter became a messy public dispute, and the dissidents eventually left to form their own church after a vote did not go their way. Tchividijian, 38 this month, merged his New City Church with that of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church.... Read this in full at

Chester Harding was painting Daniel Boone's portrait in 1820, when Boone was nearly 86 years old. Harding asked Boone if he had ever been lost during his travels. Boone replied, "No, I can't say as ever I was lost, but I was bewildered once for three days."

Even Christians can be much like Daniel Boone. We can be saved and covered by God's grace, but we can also be "mightily bewildered" sometimes by circumstances and tribulation in our lives. We must look to the source of our salvation for direction. When we do, we can overcome the obstacles that hold us back in our relationship with the Creator.
Keith Todd,

To mark the 100-day countdown until a historic world evangelization summit, organizers have launched a global chat room in eight languages. Cape Town 2010: The Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization, which is a follow-up of Lausanne II in 1989, now offers The Lausanne Global Conversation in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.

The online conversation invites mission-minded Christians and leaders worldwide to discuss and debate pressing issues facing the global church -- such as increasing hostility to Christianity, the threat of terrorism, and HIV/AIDS -- in the months leading up to the event.

Multi-lingual features enable the whole church to dialogue on a common platform,” said Naomi Frizzell, director of digital media for Cape Town 2010. “We look forward to evangelicals worldwide bringing their unique experiences, insights and perspectives.”

Some 4,000 select Christian leaders from 200 nations will attend the highly-anticipated missions event. Those who cannot attend in person can watch broadcasts of key addresses at the official GlobaLink sites offered in 68 nations and also share their thoughts on the website.... Read this in full at

Also see

Every spoken language in the world may have part of the Bible written in their own heart language within 15 years because of new technological advances as well as translation strategies. Wycliffe Bible Translators, the world’s largest scripture translation organization, believes Bible translation into all of the remaining 2,200 languages used by some 350 million people is possible by 2025.

The man responsible for raising the $1 billion needed for the effort, called the Last Languages Campaign, believes God will provide people and money to finally finish the more than 2,000-year effort. “By God’s provision we went through a financial crisis and during the very same year as the financial crisis we have our greatest year ever in the number of translations started,” said Paul Edwards, executive director of Wycliffe’s Last Language Campaign.... Read this in full at

by Martin E. Marty
Philip Jenkins, Mark Noll, Lamin Sanneh, and others reveal the same, with important books on what Jenkins calls “The Next Christendom” and Noll describes as “The New Shape of World Christianity: How American Experience Reflects Global Faith.” They see the Christian population “going South.” In American slang, “going south” means going down to an inferior position.  But in demographic terms, the capital “S” signals going up, as the masses of Christians are doing, while Christian power slides from Europe and North America to Africa, Latin America, and other points South.

It is impossible to quarantine the diseases of the old North’s Christendom so that they do not also spread South.  So the worst of the “prosperity Gospel,” with its guarantees of material prosperity to converts, has taken over and predominates in many movements, such as in Kenya. The homophobia that leads nations like Uganda and Kenya to debate whether to condemn homosexuals to death is richly related not only to old tribal taboos, but to new-style Pentecostal churches there. And the conflicts over gay issues in the American Episcopal church are heated up by interventions on the part of Ugandan and Kenyan Anglicans. The Lutheran World Federation, meeting this month, deals with Tanzanian Lutherans (who number one-third as many Lutherans after a few decades as there are Lutherans in the United States after three centuries of presence), as they say they will not accept funds or help (or prayers?) from Lutheran bodies that have different views of homosexuality than they do.... Read this in full at

A US church leader has challenged the new World Communion of Reformed Churches to move its headquarters out of Geneva, Switzerland and follow the global shift of Christianity to the Southern Hemisphere.

Addressing the group’s founding meeting on June 24, the Rev. Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, general secretary of the Reformed Church in America, described Geneva as one of the most expensive cities in the world. He questioned how the Reformed group could talk of promoting global justice, when it had its headquarters in a place of “significant economic privilege.”

Granberg-Michaelson said that a shift away from Geneva was also a matter of solidarity with its member churches, when the church “has moved dramatically to the global South.” .... Read this in full at

Megachurches in the heart of the Bible Belt are thriving enough to support a major building boom despite a sluggish economy.

First Baptist Church of Gardendale has built a $19.7 million, 2,700-seat sanctuary about 15 miles north of Birmingham. After a small arson fire in April delayed the opening, the first service in the new building is now set for Aug. 8.

First Baptist Church of Trussville is in the midst of a $7.5 million expansion that will include a new, larger home for its preschool, expected to be ready in January.

A new $4 million, 1,000-seat youth sanctuary is under construction and expected to open this fall at the Church of the Highlands, and Dawson Memorial Baptist Church in Homewood is getting ready to break ground on a $9 million children's building.... Read this in full at

"Instead of making vows about how my spiritual life will be perfectly well organized until I die, I seek to surrender my will for just this day. I look for small graces. I try to engage in little acts of service. I pray briefly to accommodate my limited attention span. I look for ways of being with God that I already enjoy. I try to go for half an hour without complaining. I try to say something encouraging to three people in a row. I put twenty dollars in my pocket that I will give away during the day. I take a five-minute break to read a page of great thoughts."
John Ortberg, in his book Me (p. 71)

Christian Solidarity Worldwide reports that the Eritrean Paltalk community has started a 24-hour prayer chain for Eritrea. The movement comes in response to the increasing suffering of Eritreans both inside the country and in countries like Libya, Ethiopia, Sudan, Egypt and Israel, where they live as refugees. The prayer chain began on July 1 and will run until September 30.

Poverty and food shortages, as well as an extremely repressive government, mean that many Eritreans flee the country to seek refuge elsewhere. Among them are Eritreans who have been denied the right to freedom of religion. Many Christians are amongst the estimated 20,000 people currently in detention, where many are slowly dying as a result of the harsh prison conditions. The coordinators of the prayer initiative are inviting people worldwide to join them by praying for at least one hour per day for an end to the suffering of the Eritrean people.... Read this in full at

But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, [the Lord's] mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in [the Lord].’”
Lamentations 3:21-24

Those who won our independence believed liberty to be the secret of happiness & courage to be the secret of liberty.”
Louis D Brandeis

Jessie Reed was incarcerated in 1985, when he was 23 years old, for committing a homicide. After 24 years as an inmate, he celebrated his one-year parole anniversary in June.

Reed remembers envying some fellow inmates at the California State Prison in Solano.

"I heard men praising God and reading their Bibles, and I heard them saying how wonderful it felt to have God in their lives, and I called them 'church fanatics,'" Reed, who recently graduated from Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, said. "They talked about how they had purpose and felt good, and I began to wonder why I never experienced what they were talking about."

Although he grew up in a Christian home in Oakland, Calif., where both of his parents were ministers, Reed said he chose a different path.

"I didn't come from a troubled home. I had a good upbringing, but I didn't want to go to church, to choir rehearsal, to Sunday evening services," he said. "I was tempted to do what my friends were doing. When I got old enough, I ran as far away from church as I could, and I ended up in a bad place."

Reed spent a total of 24 years in prison: five years in San Quentin State Prison, then Solano for five years and back to San Quentin for 14 years, before he was released in June 2009.... Read this in full at

UCB-TV, part of one of the largest Christian media ministries in the UK and Ireland, has been launched as the world’s first Christian mobile TV channel, thanks to global mobile TV network Yamgo.

Across the world Christians and non-Christians alike can enjoy the refreshing and easy to watch Christian programming on mobile phones for the very first time.

According to a report in Christian Today the exclusive launch by Yamgo will provide UCB with the potential to reach millions of mobile phone users with UCB TV. The industry leading technology, used by the mobile TV and video on demand network, provides an ideal tool for UCB TV to provide great family friendly TV on an exciting new platform.

Neil Elliott, Head of UCB TV commented, “We’re really pleased to be partnering with Yamgo, it’s great to see our live TV on mobile phones. Great advances in mobile technology have meant that tens of millions of people around the world now own a mobile phone. We believe that utilising the excellent Yamgo mobile streaming solution to broadcast UCB TV on mobile is perfect timing, enabling thousands of Christians to have access to UCB TV at the touch of a mobile button, anywhere, anytime.” .... Read this in full at

Paul insists that our social lives be governed not by ‘purity rules’ but by three simple but profound goals. First, we should live with a desire to bring glory to the one true Lord: ‘So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God’ (1 Corinthians 10:31).

[“Second,] ‘Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God -- even as I try to please everyone in every way’ (1 Corinthians 10:32-33). Throughout Paul's letters ‘stumbling’ usually means missing out on salvation. This verse, then, is not simply about upsetting people it is about acting in a way that puts their salvation at risk.

[Third,] not only are we to avoid jeopardizing the salvation of others; we are to actively pursue that salvation: ‘even as I try to please everyone in every way. For I am not seeking my own good but the good of many, so that they may be saved. Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ’ (1 Corinthians 10:33 - 11:1).

I want to ask you to reflect on Paul's teaching and on Jesus' example. Is your social life oriented toward the good of others -- being with them, befriending them, doing good to them and speaking to them about Christ when opportunity invites? In short, does your life illustrate the fellowship with sinners God so keenly desires?”
John Dickson, from his book The Best Kept Secret of Christian Mission

Among various important discoveries, the 2010 Kinneret Regional Project discovered an ancient synagogue, in use at around AD 400. This year's archeological focus is the first systematic excavation on Horvat Kur, a village inhabited from the Early Roman through the Early Medieval periods located on a gentle hill two kilometers west of the Lake of Galilee.... Read this in full at

Church-backed campaigners on water issues say they have received a boost from a global body representing 80 million Protestants that has called on its members to support access to water as a basic human right.

"Preserving the world's water resources, and securing access to water for all, is one of the greatest challenges we face," Maike Gorsboth, the Geneva-based coordinator of the secretariat of the Ecumenical Water Network told ENInews.

Gorsboth was speaking after the World Communion of Reformed Churches at its June 18 to 28 founding meeting in Grand Rapids, Michigan, urged its churches to support and adopt a declaration on "Water as a Human Right and a Public Good".

The declaration, drawn up by Swiss and Brazilian churches, urges that "the human right to water be recognized at the local and international level in the same way as the right to adequate food." .... Read this in full at

Accountant's child............Ira/Penny/Addison
Announcer's son............Mike
Archaeologist's son............Doug
Archer's son............Mark
Architect's son............Archie
Astronomer's daughter............Luna/Star
Athlete’s child............Victor/Victoria
Auto mechanic's son............Jack
Backpacker's daughter........Carrie
Baker's daughter .................Cookie
Band director's daughter........Claire Annette
Banker's daughter ........Fanny Mae/Penny/Linda
Banker's son............Rich/Cash
Baptist's son............Duncan
.... Read this in full at

You've probably heard the many negative media reports about the evangelical church, such as:
*· Christian young people are leaving the Christian faith in record numbers
*· The divorce rate among Christians is as high as those of nonbelievers
*· Christians today are watered down in their beliefs and actions

But are these truly accurate? In "Christians are Hate-Filled Hypocrites...and Other Lies You've Been Told" (Bethany House), sociologist Bradley R.E. Wright, PhD, shatters these popular myths, along with many others. Using the best available data, he reveals to readers why and how many of the commonly shared statistics are incomplete and inaccurate.

He discusses the different dynamics of how statistics are often misquoted as they get passed on and how even Christian leaders will pick statistics for their usefulness rather than for accuracy. And he highlights the problems caused for the church by the continuing emphasis on negatively slanted statistics.... Read this in full at

A religion that is small enough for our understanding would not be big enough for our needs.”
Corrie ten Boom

Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us.”
Romans 5:3-5

Words: Charles Wesley, 1738
Music: Thomas Campbell, 1825

And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

Tis mystery all: th’Immortal dies:
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.
Tis mercy all! Let earth adore;
Let angel minds inquire no more.

He left His Father’s throne above
So free, so infinite His grace—
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!
Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

Still the small inward voice I hear,
That whispers all my sins forgiven;
Still the atoning blood is near,
That quenched the wrath of hostile Heaven.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine;
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

>from NetHymnal at

Civilization is littered with unsolved problems, baffling impasses. The best minds of the world are at the end of their tether. The most knowledgeable observers of our condition are badly frightened. The most relevant contribution that Christians make at these points of impasse is the act of prayer -- determined, repeated, leisurely meetings with the personal and living God. New life is conceived in these meetings.” Eugene H. Peterson, from his book Earth & Altar


Use the following list as your daily prayer guide. Think of a brother or situation that applies and lift them up in prayer.

I am agreeing in prayer with you for God’s blessings to overtake you!

Marital harmony
Family unity
Children saved
Faithful pastor
Spirit-filled church
Real friendships
Relatives redeemed
Educational benefits
Recreational time
Fulfilling career
Favor with God and man
Be in God’s will

Better Jobs
Raises or bonuses
Sales & commissions
Business Growth
Estates & inheritances
Investment increase
Rebates & returns
Checks in the mail
Gifts & surprises
Money to be found
Bills decrease while blessings increase

"And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God" (Deut. 28:2).

[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.]

Are you looking for something or do you have something to sell? Let me know and I'll put it in this newsletter.

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Tell us what sites you find enjoyable and why.

Play Wimbledon

Antique Maps and Atlases

Summary of How to Win Friends and Influence People

It’s the Dad Life video

All links to websites are provided as a service, and do not imply endorsement by this ministry.

(BTW: whenever the URLs in this newsletter are too long to turn into links on your e-mail program, just copy the entire URL (two lines or more) and paste it into a temporary email message. Then delete the return in the middle of it and copy it again. Then paste it into your web browser and hit enter.)

Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every person has many, not on your past misfortunes, of which all people have some.
Min. Frank Coleman, Editor

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CONNECTIONS is a periodic newsletter of announcements, news, recommendations, articles, and other information helpful to men in our spiritual growth. Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!


The CONNECTIONS Team offers a variety of activities for men to interact with other men on our journey of faith in Christ together. Large group, small group, and one-to-one events encourage relationship building and spiritual strengthening that result in maximizing the potential we all have in Christ.
Contact Min. Frank Coleman, 773-410-1483, if you'd like to participate in a men's discipleship program.
Path Of Life Ministries is located in Chicago, IL.
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