Connecting man to man to God
For week of October 3, 2010
Issue 324


The weekly 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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"Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows."
Luke 12:6-7



    
CONSIDER
He who goes with wolves learns to howl.”
Spanish proverb



    
THE UPDATED BIBLE: MOSES V. STEVE JOBS
2011 marks the 400th anniversary of the King James Version, a classic Bible that still outsells many of the most contemporary translations.

Recent technological advances are changing how businesses publish the Bible, how people consume the Bible, and how we share the Bible, says John Sawyer, former vice president of Bible marketing at Zondervan and current brand and marketing strategist for Somersault (http://somersau.lt), a publishing strategy and services agency.

Sawyer told attendees of Religion Newswriters Association's conference September 23 that people are reading the Bible without historical context and reading the Bible in isolation as a result of many technological advances.... Read this in full at
http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctliveblog/archives/2010/09/the_updated_bib.html


    
USA RELIGIOUS KNOWLEDGE SURVEY
Atheists and agnostics, Jews, and Mormons are among the highest-scoring groups on a new survey of religious knowledge, outperforming evangelical Protestants, mainline Protestants, and Catholics on questions about the core teachings, history, and leading figures of major world religions.

On average, Americans correctly answer 16 of the 32 religious knowledge questions on the survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life. Atheists and agnostics average 20.9 correct answers. Jews and Mormons do about as well, averaging 20.5 and 20.3 correct answers, respectively. Protestants as a whole average 16 correct answers; Catholics as a whole, 14.7. Atheists and agnostics, Jews, and Mormons perform better than other groups on the survey even after controlling for differing levels of education.... Read this in full at
http://pewforum.org/Other-Beliefs-and-Practices/U-S-Religious-Knowledge-Survey.aspx

See also “Is knowledge of religion important? Why?”
http://onfaith.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/2010/09/is_religious_knowledge_importa/all.html


    
RELIGIOUS KNOWLEDGE QUIZ
How much do you know about religion? And how do you compare with the average American? Take this 15-question online quiz to find out. Go to the online quiz at
http://features.pewforum.org/quiz/us-religious-knowledge/index.php


    
DO HIS WILL
Teach us, good Lord, to serve Thee as Thou deservest:
To give and not to count the cost;
To fight and not to heed the wounds;
To toil and not to seek for rest;
To labor and not ask for any reward,
Save that of knowing that we do Thy will.
... St. Ignatius of Loyola (1491/5-1556), included in A Treasury of Sermon Illustrations, Charles Langworthy Wallis, ed., Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, 1950, [1548] p. 61


    
THINKING GOD THOUGHTS
We have no control over how we feel, how we act- our attitudes, and actions -- except as they are determined by our thoughts. All these elements are irrevocably tied together. But since we do have control over what we think, it is possible to control our attitudes and actions…All thoughts can be divided into two basic categories: true and false. The thoughts that come from God are true. He is the God of all truth and has sent the Holy Spirit to dwell in us and to guide us into all truth. If I can receive God’s thoughts, I can think the truth. Therefore I will have the right attitudes and actions. How do you get the air out of a glass? By filling it with water. How do you get rid of wrong and untrue thoughts? By filling your mind with true and right thoughts from God. The control of our thought life, then, comes by thinking God’s thoughts with Him.”
Peter Lord



    
PROMISE KEEPERS OPENS DOOR TO DALLAS WOMEN FOR FIRST TIME
Until recently, the world's largest Christian men's ministry would have considered allowing women into its conferences unthinkable. But for the first time on Saturday, Oct. 2, men in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex will attend a Promise Keepers meeting accompanied by their wives, mothers, sisters and young adult daughters -- signaling one of the most significant changes in the ministry's history.

In addition, Promise Keepers will extend a special invitation of honor to single mothers. In keeping with the times, Promise Keepers recognizes that nearly half of all US homes are led by single women. In order to fulfill the ministry's vision to transform homes for Christ, it became clear that women should be invited. Promise Keepers still pursues its ministry to men with PK Classic events for men only.

"Igniting Transformation is about a revolution of the Word of God," said Coach Bill McCartney, the former University of Colorado head football coach who founded the ministry in 1990 and recently came out of retirement to again serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors. "We realized the time had come for Promise Keepers to expand its vision beyond ministry to just men." .... Read this in full at
http://christiannewswire.com/news/8020315074.html


    
CHURCHES FIND EMPTY PEWS AT SUNDAY EVENING SERVICES
by Matt Vande Bunte
Doug De Vries describes Sunday evening worship as “a lot less formal” than the morning service at Plymouth Heights Christian Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, MI. It’s also a lot less crowded.

Plymouth Heights is in step with a larger trend of declining evening attendance in evangelical denominations that long have cherished a heritage of worshiping twice on Sunday. Some evening services are more intimate; others have been cancelled or replaced by an alternative.

It’s a business question that has been asked,” said De Vries, the church’s minister of music. “People are spending time with their family (on Sunday nights) or using that time to get together in small groups. We were concerned that we were squandering resources to put the evening service together.”

Plymouth Heights’ 5 p.m. worship service continues, with about 25% of the people who attend the weekly Sunday morning service.

That mirrors data from across the CRC, based on survey results presented this summer to the church’s annual Synod. The survey found evening worship attendance is “plummeting,” down from 56% of members in 1992 to 24% in 2007. Researchers wrote that the data “seems to suggest evening service attendance has become optional.” .... Read this in full at
http://www.religionnews.com/index.php?/rnstext/churches_find_empty_pews_at_sunday_evening_services1/


    
OBAMA DISCUSSES HIS FAITH: 'I'M A CHRISTIAN BY CHOICE'
President Obama took the issue of his faith head on September 28, telling residents in New Mexico that he is a "Christian by choice" who came to religion later in life after being inspired by the teachings of Jesus Christ.

During a stop at the home of an Albuquerque school teacher and her husband, a disabled veteran, the president spoke about the economy, education, abortion, the upcoming elections, and why he believes the Republican agenda would set the country back on the wrong path.

But it was a question about religion that garnered one of Obama's longest responses. "Why are you a Christian?," he was asked.

The president said while his mother was very spiritual, he wasn't raised as a churchgoer. It was only as an adult did he embrace Christianity.... Read this in full at
http://www.politicsdaily.com/2010/09/28/obama-discusses-his-faith-im-a-christian-by-choice/


     ELECTION '10: DEFINITION OF 'PERSON' IS ON COLO. BALLOT
Two years after losing in an election climate that was unfavorable for conservatives, pro-lifers in Colorado are back this year with another ballot initiative that would answer a simple question: What is a person?

Amendment 62, as it is called, would amend the Colorado constitution so that it defines a person as "every human being from the beginning of the biological development of that human being." Such a statement may seem like common sense to many Americans, but actually is quite controversial and, if upheld, would have a dramatic impact on the state's abortion laws.

In 2008, a similar proposal -- the first of its kind on a statewide ballot -- lost, 73-27 percent. Although it didn't come close to passage, it sparked a nationwide movement that saw personhood amendments pass the North Dakota House and the Montana Senate in 2009. Neither bill went any further, but it showed that the issue was not limited to Colorado. Mississippi citizens, for instance, will vote on a personhood initiative in 2011, thanks to a successful petition drive.... Read this in full at
http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=33748


    
WHAT IS FAITH?
Faith is the avenue to salvation. Not intellectual understanding. Not money. Not your works. Just simple faith. How much faith? The faith of a mustard seed, so small you can hardly see it. But if you will put that little faith in the person of Jesus, your life will be changed. He will come with supernatural power into your heart. It can happen to you.”
Billy Graham



    
FAITH AND SCIENCE
[S]cience and faith are not merely compatible but comparable in many ways, and ought to be inseparable. Together they open our minds to the grandeur of our world and promote the best kind of science.

For any scientist to dismiss the laws of nature and the objects of creation so clearly recognizable as the handiwork of God as nothing more than by-products of time and chance is to miss out on one of the most amazing gifts mankind has ever been given: the opportunity to unravel some of the greatest mysteries of all time. Surely this is the worst kind of science.

But as Richard Bube wrote, there is another alternative. ‘The Christian philosophy of science is this,’ he said. ‘Christian science is good science. And good science is science that is faithful to the structure of reality. Science that is honest, open, seeking to capture and to reflect the structure of the world that is really there-that is good science, and that is Christian science.’"
Jim Nelson Black, in his book The Death of Evolution



    
FORMER BAYLOR COACH RECOUNTS REDEMPTION
"I cheated," David Bliss told students at Hardin-Simmons University Sept. 28. "I allowed the competitive world of college athletics to compromise my moral compass," said Bliss, former Baylor University men's basketball coach who was fired in 2002 because of NCAA violations from what he called his dream job. "But my story is one of encouragement," Bliss said. "It gives reason to believe."

In a chapel service at the Baptist university in Abilene, Texas, Bliss said, "I am the headlights flashing on the country road, warning you of something ahead....I never thought I would do something to humiliate my family and the people I love. But it did happen to me and I am here to warn you that it happens."

A student of legendary coach Bobby Knight, Bliss recounted that his violations were exposed after one of his basketball players was murdered. "I cheated on something I didn't need to cheat on," Bliss said. "I was afraid of not having enough basketball players, so I paid for two of my players to continue going to school after their scholarship money ran out." .... Read this in full at
http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=33769


    
LOVE & HATE
The opposite of love is not hate; it’s something much worse than that. Hate with all its negation and emotion at least takes the other into account. The opposite of love is something much cooler, more pallid, and really much more cruel. The opposite of love is indifference.”
William Hague



    
COLBERT PUT MORAL ISSUE BACK INTO IMMIGRATION EQUATION, SAYS EVANGELICAL LEADER
While many have criticized Stephen Colbert for his recent testimony to a Congressional subcommittee on immigration, an evangelical leader with 13 years experience on the issue has commended the comedian for reminding the public that the nation’s immigration problem is a moral issue.

Galen Carey, director of government affairs for the National Association of Evangelicals, further noted how Colbert became “uncharacteristically serious” while citing the words of Jesus – “whatsoever you did for the least of my brothers, you did it to me” (Matthew 25:40) – during his testimony.

The Comedy Central star, who is a practicing Catholic, said he knows there are many “least brothers” in the current poor economy. But he highlighted that “migrant workers suffer, and have no rights.”

These are not idle comments,” remarked Carey in a column posted Wednesday on CNN. “Christians take Jesus’ words as a call to show justice and mercy to those at the very bottom of the social hierarchy.

If a slightly irreverent comedian can help to prick the nation’s conscience and move us to finally rectify this long-standing injustice, then we welcome his intervention,” added the evangelical leader, who worked for 26 years for World Relief, the NAE’s humanitarian arm.... Read this in full at
http://www.christianpost.com/article/20100929/colbert-put-moral-issue-back-into-immigration-equation-says-evangelical-leader/index.html


    
VERSE TO PONDER
"The Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; it is he who will save us."
Isaiah 33:22



    
CONSIDER
When anger enters the mind, wisdom departs.”
Thomas a Kempis (1380-1471), Hortulus Rosarum, quoted in The Story of the "Imitatio Christi", Leonard Abercrombie Wheatley, London: Elliot Stock, 1891, IV.ii, p. 212



    
WHAT ROLE SHOULD THE BIBLE HAVE IN SOCIETY?
Interpreting the Bible has become a divisive issue for some and little more than sport for others. Some want to talk about the “authority” of Scripture. They’re asking questions like, “How is the Bible authoritative in our lives today?” Others are wondering if the word “inerrancy” is making a comeback. Is it? Or is the term only useful for theological debates, to separate those who are “in” and those who are “out”? How then should we interpret the Bible as God’s word for our culture today? These questions are discussed on video by Tim Keller and Alister McGrath and Brian McLaren. Watch it at
http://www.qideas.org/video/what-role-should-the-bible-have-in-society.aspx


    
THE DECLINE IN WORSHIP ATTENDANCE
by Lovett H. Weems Jr.
Many people assume there has been a steady decline in worship attendance for all the mainline denominations since the mid-1960s -- the era when most of them began to see their memberships decline. But trends in attendance -- usually thought to be a better indicator of church vitality than trends in membership -- have actually followed their own patterns.

For example, the Episcopal Church reported higher attendance in 2000 than in any year since 1991, the year the denomination began recording attendance figures. The United Methodist Church reported worship attendance figures in 2000 that were higher than those in the mid-1980s. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America had relatively flat attendance rates in the years before 2001, and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) in the 1990s had several years showing modest gains in attendance.

But the years following 2001 have shown a deep recession in worship attendance. The losses in worshipers year after year were more dramatic than what data from the previous decade would have predicted.... Read this in full at
http://christiancentury.org/article/2010-09/no-shows


    
WHISPERS
With my hand on a Bible, I would tell you that God unmistakably spoke to me. "For reasons you do not have to understand," he said, "I am calling you to serve church leaders beyond the borders of the United States. I am making no promises that it will be easy. In fact, it will require more sacrifice than anything else I have asked you to do, but I am asking you now ...serve church leaders wherever I give you opportunity around the world."

There it was, in about fifteen seconds flat- one innocent whisper that would upturn a major part of my life.

Whispers can be dangerous things. They can come with huge price tags. God's whisper to his Son, Jesus- to make a redemptive visit to planet Earth- was a costly one, and as we will see in the next chapter, high-cost whispers are a huge part of what has kept the kingdom dream alive throughout the centuries. Therefore it should come as no surprise that a certain number of whispers that come our way will drive us to our knees and stretch our faith like nothing else can. So be it. We only live once, and I much prefer the idea of standing before God one day, having done his bidding to the best of my understanding than to face him knowing full well that I ignored his voice and sidestepped the tougher promptings I received.”
Bill Hybels, in his book Power of a Whisper



    
HOPES FOR CAPE TOWN 2010
by Darrell Bock
It does not happen very often. This is the third time. The others were in 1974 (Lausanne) and 1989 (Manila). On October 15-26 over 4000 Christian leaders from around the world will gather to reflect on the call of God for the church.

There will be discussions about truth, reconciliation, the gospel, and the needs of the church worldwide. Each region of the world will get to speak. Beyond this over 600 sites in over 90 countries will be hooked up to watch and participate, so that the event truly will cover the globe.

I am looking forward to hearing what God is doing around the world. I hope to be inspired and renewed in my sense of call. I also hope to sense a greater connection with other believers around the world as we consider what God has called us all to do in and for the world.

My role is Communications Coordinator for the command center of over 600 global link sites. I am overseeing 15 people who will work three shifts around the clock to bring summaries of the events to the Globalink sites to make the conference even more global. Our job is to produce video summaries of sessions within 5 hours of their ending and post them on the Net so other locales can get a sense of what is going on. We will have video material, and reflection questions, as well as summaries of the content. 

The schedule is a full one. Exposition of Ephesians will lead off each day. Key topics are a part of the second set of daily meetings of the full gathering. Topics are truth, reconciliation, world faiths, priorities, integrity, and partnership. In addition, specific topics will be the focus of certain afternoon sessions. In the evening sessions, reports on what is taking place in various continents and among various kinds of people groups will take place.... Read this in full at
http://www.koinoniablog.net/2010/09/darrell-bock-hopes-for-cape-town-2010.html


    
SHAPE-NOTE SINGING LIVES ON THROUGH SMALL DEDICATED FOLLOWING
The archaic sounds that fill the historic former church sanctuary echo, hauntingly, like a whispering ghost from the past. Inside the 1902 building that once housed the Second Presbyterian Church, the elaborate archways bounce back the sound of sacred harp singing.

It's a style of music that once dominated rural evangelical religion, in the days before the Civil War and church organs, when a capella singing was the norm. It's never entirely died out, in part because of people like Tim Cook.

"It was once common throughout the South," said Cook, a shape-note singing aficionado who brought his lessons to the former church that's now part of the University of Alabama at Birmingham campus.

Cook's group of more than a dozen interested singers sat facing Cook as the song leader, holding wide-page hymnbooks filled with notes in the shapes of open and solid squares, diamonds, triangles and ovals.... Read this in full at
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/27/shapenote-singing-lives-o_n_741019.html


    
OCTOBER IS PASTOR APPRECIATION MONTH
by Bill Ellis
Every October, pastor appreciation month, thousands of churches throughout the United States and other countries find special ways to honor and express gratitude for pastors.

In recent years, I have appeared on hundreds of radio stations to talk about this unusual month and what churches and congregants may do to express their appreciation for their pastors. Let your ministers know they are genuinely appreciated.

Pastors come in all shapes and sizes. They may be men or women. No two are exactly alike. Some are more highly educated than your medical doctor, lawyer, teacher, governor or president. Some of our most effective pastors, however, did not have the opportunity for higher education. These pastors have spent many years in self-directed study.

Some of the best educated pastors I have known, and I have known thousands of them, were not graduated from college or even high school, but they spent years and hours each day in reading, serious Bible study, attending conferences, learning from others and relying on superb mentors to rise to the top of their profession and calling.... Read this in full at
http://www.assistnews.net/Stories/2010/s10090169.htm


    
VOCAL DYSLEXIA
There is a disease terrible that strikes 10 out of 1 Americans 15 every minutes. Vocal Dyslexia it's called. An elment I've been lifing all my fight. It can warn without striking and has no regard for case, read, or crolor.

Symptoms:
~ speechaled garb
~ backs coming out wordward
~ and an inability to sent a complete putence together

The victims: innocent people like you and pe.

Sadly, Vocal Dyslexia is wilding liek spreadfire and there is no cureful symp, butthere is hope. The dyslexia foundation has recommended these things 3:

3rd: at the first trub of signale phonsult a confition
2nd: stay in bed and drink flenty of pluids
1st: read as can as you much

For more information write: 999 Teenfifth Street, Grand Mapids, Ricaghan

Thank you muchy ver.
http://www.mikeysFunnies.com


    
CONSIDER
The function of fear is to warn us of danger, not to make us afraid to face it.”
Author unknown



    
VERSE TO PONDER
"I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches."
Psalm 119:14



    
THIS WEEK'S HYMN: ABIDE IN THEE
Words: Joseph D. Smith, 1869
Music: Francis Cunningham, 1834

Abide in Thee, in that deep love of Thine,
My Jesus, Lord, Thou Lamb of God divine;
Down, closely down, as living branch with tree,
I would abide, my Lord, my Christ, in Thee.

Abide in Thee, my Savior, God, I know
How love of Thine, so vast, in me may flow:
My empty vessel running o’er with joy,
Now overflows to Thee without alloy.

Abide in Thee, nor doubt, nor self, nor sin,
Can e’er prevail with Thy blest life within;
Joined to Thyself, communing deep, my soul
Knows naught besides its motions to control.

Abide in Thee, ’tis thus alone I know
The secrets of Thy mind e’en while below;
All joy and peace, and knowledge of Thy Word,
All power and fruit, and service for the Lord.

>from NetHymnal at
http://nethymnal.org/htm/a/i/abinthee.htm


     ON PRAYER
Most men pray for power, the strength to do things. Few people pray for love, the quality to be someone."
Robert Foster



     PRAY FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS TODAY
http://christiansincrisis.net/


     DAILY BLESSING PACT
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!

PERSONAL
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

FINANCIAL
Better Jobs
Raises or bonuses
Benefits
Sales & commissions
Business Growth
Settlements
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 us to add you to our prayer chain to pray for your safety and spiritual effectiveness. I'll add your name to the list for the time you'll be away.]


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

Book your next vacation with us!
http://www.ChristianConnectionTravel.com

Books, Music & More!
http://www.ChristianConnectionBooks.com

Get your domain name here!
http://www.GoGlobalDomains.com

Let me show you how to earn money as you travel!
http://www.earnGlobalVacations.com/
It's as easy as 1-2-3!


     SHARE YOUR FAVORITE WEBSITES
Tell us what sites you find enjoyable and why.

Free nature sounds
http://naturesoundsfor.me/

How to build a fireball you can hold in your hand
http://www.break.com/index/how-to-build-a-fireball-you-can-hold.html

A colorful photo of the 4 seasons
http://www.jeffsweather.com/archives/Picture1.gif

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.)


He who throws mud loses ground.
Min. Frank Coleman, Editor
Rev.frank@gmail.com


Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!

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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!

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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, frank@frankcoleman.com if you'd like to participate in a men's discipleship program.
Path Of Life Ministries is located in Chicago, IL.
Visit our website at: http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/  

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