to man to God
For week of February 12, 2012
The weekly 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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and sisters, we must always thank God for you. This is only right
because your faithfulness is growing by leaps and bounds, and the
love that all of you have for each other is increasing.”
Thessalonians 1:3 (CEB)
are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you
can live as if everything is a miracle.”
SLIDES AVAILABLE FOR LENTEN BIBLE READINGS
time for the beginning of the centuries-old tradition of Lent on Ash
Wednesday (Feb. 22), churches, bloggers, and others can now share the
season’s official and coordinated Bible readings in a free
PowerPoint® presentation consisting of vivid color photography of
nature scenes combined with Scripture verses from the new bestselling
Bible translation Common English Bible
presentation (http://CommonEnglishBible.com/CEB/LentDownloads and
http://slideshare.net/CommonEnglishBible) is comprised of nine Bible
readings to observe Ash Wednesday, each Sunday of Lent, Good Friday,
and Easter. It’s flexible enough to display only portions from it
or all the slides, and to present them prior to or during church
services, embed in blogs and other websites, or email to friends.
Verses are selected from the Revised Common Lectionary (Year B) ....
Read this in full at
GLOBAL WAR ON CHRISTIANS IN THE MUSLIM WORLD
Ayaan Hirsi Ali
hear so often about Muslims as victims of abuse in the West and
combatants in the Arab Spring’s fight against tyranny. But, in
fact, a wholly different kind of war is underway—an unrecognized
battle costing thousands of lives. Christians are being killed in the
Islamic world because of their religion. It is a rising genocide that
ought to provoke global alarm.
portrayal of Muslims as victims or heroes is at best partially
accurate. In recent years the violent oppression of Christian
minorities has become the norm in Muslim-majority nations stretching
from West Africa and the Middle East to South Asia and Oceania. In
some countries it is governments and their agents that have burned
churches and imprisoned parishioners. In others, rebel groups and
vigilantes have taken matters into their own hands, murdering
Christians and driving them from regions where their roots go back
media’s reticence on the subject no doubt has several sources.
may be fear of provoking additional violence. Another is most likely
the influence of lobbying groups such as the Organization of Islamic
Cooperation — a kind of United Nations of Islam centered in Saudi
Arabia — and the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Over the
past decade, these and similar groups have been remarkably successful
in persuading leading public figures and journalists in the West to
think of each and every example of perceived anti-Muslim
discrimination as an expression of a systematic and sinister
derangement called “Islamophobia” — a term that is
elicit the same moral disapproval as xenophobia or homophobia....
Read this in full at
REAFFIRMS IT DID NOT DELETE 'FATHER,' 'SON,' FROM BIBLE TRANSLATIONS
Bible Translators denied allegations that it removed the terms
"father" and "son" from Bible translations meant
for Muslim countries and said any problematic texts are no longer
Hersman, senior vice president of Wycliffe Bible Translators USA,
told The Christian Post that many of the works that critics like the
organization Bible Missiology have pointed to as changing familial
terms for God and Jesus have either done no such thing or have
already been pulled from circulation.
of the Prophets] was an audio drama that originally substituted
inadequate familial terms in the mid-1990s. Since that time, the
translation has been removed from circulation and will not be
re-released until it has been corrected and revised," said
Hersman.... Read this in full at
ARROWS AND LIGHT ARROWS
Clare De Graaf
Clare, I have a very important and potentially tough meeting today.
Exactly what does it mean to be led by the Holy Spirit in that
the question a CEO of a major company posed to me a few years ago
over breakfast. He didn’t want the theologically correct answer;
wanted advice in a way he could understand and use. Today! So,
what I told him.
you’re an amazingly gifted man. You have an MBA from one of the
best schools in the country. You’re athletic, aggressive,
intelligent and have wonderful communication skills – a natural
born leader. You’re also a serious follower of Jesus, which means
you’ve been given unique spiritual gifts as well.
today, when you go into that meeting I know you’ll use every
and gift you have to charm and persuade everyone to agree to your
proposal. I’d like you to think of all these wonderful skills,
your spiritual gifts as white arrows. White arrows are simply all
your natural and spiritual gifts, your life experiences and all the
knowledge and virtuous skills you’ve acquired.” .... Read
FORGET VALENTINE’S DAY, FEB. 14
Easy — and Mostly Free! — Ways to Say "I Love You"
strengthen unions, marriage experts advise couples to "make
weekly dates" or "go away on a couple's weekend."
Those are great ideas, but let's be realistic: how often can busy
couples expect to drop everything and get away? These 11 quick and
simple ways to express love let busy couples rekindle romance among
the chaos of everyday life.
Embrace your past. Assemble a scrapbook together, pull out your
wedding video, or write your own personal romance story. Reliving
special memories together is a great way to strengthen your bond.
Be kids together. Have a pillow fight, challenge each other to a game
of hopscotch, or cuddle on the couch and laugh as you watch cartoons.
Wrap your mate in love. While your sweetie showers, sneak her towel
into the dryer, and as she steps out, wrap her in fluffy warmth. Or
use the same idea to warm her feet when she snuggles in bed on a
chilly autumn night.... Read this in full at
STAR: GOD GAVE ME ANOTHER 'OPPORTUNITY'
much of the season, Chase Blackburn watched the NFL season the way
millions of other fans did - from his couch. He ended the season,
however, in the middle of the New York Giants Super Bowl victory
gave me another opportunity to play," Blackburn said at the
Super Bowl media day Jan. 31. "I'm just trying to make the most
six-year veteran linebacker with the Giants, Blackburn became an
unrestricted free agent at the end of the 2010 season and fully
expected to continue his career in 2011. But no team was interested,
so he had begun pursuing a second career as a teacher.
his future in the classroom had to wait when the Giants signed him
prior to their week 13 game against Green Bay on Dec. 4.
Sunday's Super Bowl XLVI win over New England in Lucas Oil Stadium,
Blackburn made one of the game's biggest plays.... Read this in full
TO ANSWER 'WHY WOULD GOD ALLOW EVIL?'
number one lie that Christians are often confronted with is the
argument that evil, pain, and suffering prove that there is no God,
said author and apologist Mark Mittelberg.
a rebuttal to the question of why God would allow such things can be
challenging, said Mittelberg, who is the author of The Questions
Christians Hope No One Will Ask and other books about defending the
told The Christian Post recently that in fact, it was the issue of
evil that initially led the renowned author and scholar C. S. Lewis
into atheism. However, upon further reflection, Lewis began to see
that if there is no God, then there is no such thing as evil either.
can only be known and measured against a standard of good. Apart from
God and the morality that flows from Him there is no standard –
therefore no evil either," he explained. "But we know in
our hearts – it's inescapable – that evil is real." ....
Read this in full at
NEED TO EXAMINE THE MORAL FRAMEWORK BEHIND THE CONCEPT OF 'ETHICAL
topic of oilsands production has long been contentious, with
environmental critics at home and abroad branding oilsands as 'dirty
oil,' in large part due to the environmental impact caused by the
the idea of 'ethical oil' has entered Canadian politics like a
lightening bolt, mainly due to Environment Minister Peter Kent who
seems to have taken a cue from lobbyist Ezra Levant. 'Ethical oil' is
considered to be the opposite of 'conflict oil,' which is produced in
countries with poor human rights records.
idea seems to have caught on. Today, many Canadians think America's
real choice is between Canada's 'ethical oil' or 'unethical oil' from
tyrannies like Saudi Arabia, Nigeria or Iran. Is this a healthy
development? Should Christians join the 'ethical oil' parade? ....
Read this in full at
anybody happier because you passed his way?
anyone remember that you spoke to him today?
day is almost over and its toiling time is through;
there anyone to utter now a kindly word of you?
you give a cheerful greeting to the friend who came along,
a churlish sort of "Howdy"; then vanish in the throng?
you selfish, pure and simple, as you rushed along your way,
is someone mighty grateful for a deed you did today?
you say tonight, in parting with the day that's slipping fast,
you helped a single brother of the many that you passed?
a single heart rejoicing over what you did or said?
the man whose hopes were fading now with courage look ahead?
you waste the day or lose it, was it well or poorly spent?
you leave a trail of kindness, or a scar of discontent?
you close your eyes in slumber, do you think that God would say,
have earned one more tomorrow by the work you did today?"
not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge
others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be
measured to you.’ Matthew 7:1 NIV]
sayings of Jesus have caused more frustration than his words about
judging. From everything else Jesus taught, we know Jesus wasn't
telling us just to turn a blind eye to sin. So we struggle to find a
way to sort out sin without actually calling it that, so that we
won't sin by judging.
this teaching of Jesus grows much more applicable when we hear how it
fits into the wider conversation going on among Jewish thinkers.
about 120 BC, Yehoshua ben Perachia, one of the earliest rabbinic
sages, shared the following wisdom: ‘Judge each person with the
scales weighted in their favor.’ The saying evokes the imagery of
the ancient marketplace, where a merchant measures out grain by
pouring it into one pan of a hanging scale until it swings level with
the weighted side. A friendly shopkeeper will heap a little extra on,
letting the pans tilt past the balance point. The idea is that you
should ‘weigh’ the deeds of others on the side of
Simply put, give others the benefit of the doubt.
employed a similar metaphor about judging: ‘A good measure,
down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap.
For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you’ (Luke
6:38). Jesus too says that we should let our scales of justice fall
past the balance point, bestowing on others a little more than they
almost every situation, a person can either look for a good or a bad
motive behind other people's behavior. The way you choose to
interpret others' motives has a profound effect on the way you react
to them... I'm still working on putting this into practice, but
imagine the possibilities if I consistently looked at other people in
the best possible light... When I heard someone insulting my faith, I
might say, ‘That person must have had a bad experience with the
church in order to make him feel that way.’ Truly, this small
practice can change your entire outlook on life.”
Lois Tverberg in
Walking in the Dust of Rabbi Jesus: How the Jewish Words of Jesus Can
Change Your Life
debut issue of FamilyFiction Edge Feb/Mar 2012 features interviews
with Frank Peretti, Terri Blackstock, Bill Myers, and more!
FamilyFiction Edge is devoted to Christian authors who write
Suspense, Speculative Fiction, YA/Teen, Comics and DVDs. Read it
IGLOO OF WORSHIP
Diana Magnay reports on a snow church made famous by a postcard in a
chilly Bavarian village.... See this video report in full at
SIN TO DEATH
is my once-monthly post on the Puritan John Owen. In this series of
posts I am sharing some of what John Owen says about putting sin to
death, or what he calls mortification. I have been going through John
Owen’s book OVERCOMING SIN AND TEMPTATION and trying to distill
each chapter to its essence—to a few choice quotes that capture
flavor of what Owen is trying to communicate.
far we’ve looked at THE FOUNDATION OF MORTIFICATION, we’ve
encouraged to DAILY PUT SIN TO DEATH, to understand that IT IS THE
HOLY SPIRIT WHO PUTS SIN TO DEATH and to acknowledge that YOUR
SPIRITUAL LIFE DEPENDS UPON KILLING SIN. Last month we saw WHAT IT IS
NOT TO PUT SIN TO DEATH. Today we look to the flip-side of last
month’s teaching and see what it is to put sin to death.
this quote serves as introduction rather than the main point, I
thought it was too good not to share: “
reason why a natural man is not always perpetually in the pursuit of
some one lust, night and day, is because he has many to serve, every
one crying to be satisfied; thence he is carried on with great
variety, but still in general he lies toward the satisfaction of
self.” .... Read this in full at
RULES THAT ALLOW FRIENDS TO BE REAL FRIENDS
an unusual gift lies behind that word "friend." Some things
in life we can acquire by direct effort—people can make a pile of
money, or get their bodies into great shape. But no one can make
someone become their friend. Friendship happens, when it happens at
all, as a gift.
in church ministry are particularly vulnerable when they don't have
friends. Another friend of mine told me recently a depressing litany
about how many pastors are depressed, or have strayed sexually, or
would take up another line of work if they thought they could get a
good job. The single most powerful indicator of whether or not
someone in pastoral ministry will be able to sustain their ministry
is this: do they have a "full-disclosure friend," someone
before whom they have no secrets?
does a full-disclosure friendship look like? Another friend of mine
(actually, he's a guy I really admire and like a lot, but we've never
lived in the same town, so I probably can't legitimately call him a
friend; he's more of a
deeply-admired-good-chemistry-semi-disclosing-acquaintance) just gave
me the five rules anyone needs to know.... Read this in full at
RED-LETTER DAY AWAITS YOU
words of our Savior in red," some Bibles say on their spines.
But what about the words printed in black? I recently posted a
picture on Facebook of a tattered Bible, opened to no place in
particular, but the two pages looking like a Technicolor spectacular,
with notes, revelations, and reminders in its margins. Bookmarks and
Post-It notes splayed forth from many spots. Many people mark verses
and passages that speak -- or shout -- to them in their Bibles.
this picture I found was the quotation by Charles Spurgeon, "People
whose Bibles are falling apart usually lead lives that aren't."
It reminded me of the country song whose title warned listeners
against "dust on the Bible."
are some devout people who think that any notes or marks we make in
the Holy Bible is a form of desecration, but I am of the school that
thinks that scripture, the Holy Word, is also God's User Manual for
Life. I suspect it pleases Him when we are touched by a truth... want
to revisit things easily... find ways we can organize the wisdom,
commands, and promises... and know it all better.... Read this in
have heard that it was said, You must love your neighbor and hate
your enemy. But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those
who harass you so that you will be acting as children of your Father
who is in heaven. He makes the sun rise on both the evil and the good
and sends rain on both the righteous and the unrighteous.”
is not gush; joy is not jolliness. Joy is just perfect acquiescence
in God's will because the soul delights itself in God Himself.”
Hammer William Webb-Peploe
SOURCE OF UNFAILING LOVE
of us has tried to make another person’s love the foundation for
our love for others — maybe a parent, friend, or spouse. But what
happens when we don't feel their love? We can get trapped in the
downward spiral of ‘you don't feel like loving me, so I won't
like loving you,’ and then it becomes abundantly clear that we
a stronger foundation. We need a love that will never fail us.
loves you just like that. Jesus laid down his life for you! The most
eternally significant moment in your life comes when you first
recognize the truth, ‘Jesus loves me.’
cannot give what you have not received. You cannot give unconditional
love unless you have received unconditional love. You cannot give
unselfish love unless you have received unselfish love. You cannot
give patient love unless you have received patient love. You cannot
love in forgiveness unless you have been loved in forgiveness.
5:1-2 reads, ‘Follow God's example, therefore, as dearly loved
children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and
gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to
One of the most empowering steps you can take to love others is to
realize that you yourself are a dearly loved child. Never get over
Tom Holladay in Love-Powered Parenting: Loving Your Kids the
Way Jesus Loves You
FORCE REMOVES 'GOD' FROM LOGO
group of Republican lawmakers is protesting the removal of a
reference to God in the patch logo for the Air Force Rapid
Capabilities Office (RCO), The Hill reports.
patch included a line in Latin -- common for military patches -- that
translated to "Doing God's Work with Other People's Money."
However, after the Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers
complained, the Air Force replaced the line several weeks ago with
the Latin for "Doing Miracles with Other People's Money."
legislators, led by Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.), wrote a letter to Air
Force Secretary Michael Donley and Chief of Staff Gen. Norton
Schwartz, urging them to restore the original logo. "It is most
egregious," Forbes said. "The Air Force is taking the tone
that you can't even use the word 'God.' ... It is a very dangerous
course to take."
NEW CHRISTIAN ABOLITION MOVEMENT
know from talking to other victims and other agencies that girls are
taken to truck stops and they’re actually traded,” says
Mitchell, North Carolina human trafficking manager for World Relief.
World Relief is a Christian nonprofit attached to the National
Association of Evangelicals and is best known for its efforts to
combat global hunger and respond to disasters around the world.
Mitchell is trying to tackle a disaster in her home state. And she is
not alone.... Read this in full at
COLTS GUARD SETH OLSEN SEES FIRST HAND HOW LIFEWATER INTERNATIONAL
BRINGS CLEAN WATER AND HOPE TO THE WORLD'S POOREST PEOPLE
Luis Obispo, California-based Lifewater International is a
non-profit, Christian group that is working with other non-profits in
Africa to bring safe water, sanitation and hygiene education to some
of the poorest communities in the world.
to UNICEF and the World Health Organization, diarrhea alone kills
more young children than AIDS, malaria and measles combined.
by training their local partner to dig a new well just outside their
community, Lifewater has provided the people of Alyet Village in
northern Uganda with sustainable access to safe water that will not
only improve their health, but reduce their exposure to rapes,
assaults, and kidnappings.... Read this in full at
ART OF NAZI HUNTING: HOW ISRAEL’S MOSSAD FOUND ADOLF EICHMANN
Finale: The Story of the Capture of Eichmann” is a museum
exhibition that chronicles the secret Mossad operation that stalked
and captured Nazi war criminal Adolph Eichmann from his refuge in
Buenos Aires, and smuggled him to Israel to stand trial for his role
in organizing the Final Solution. Eichmann was the chief logistician
of the Holocaust, and the exhibit at the University of Tel Aviv is
satisfying in every possible way: Not only seeing justice done, but
laying eyes on the homespun artifacts of early spycraft that made it
happen, like the stubby metal needle that administered a sedative
before the prisoner was led, dressed in the uniform of a flight
navigator, up the staircase of the El Al plane that carried him
across the Atlantic.
exhibit, at The Museum of the Jewish People, has it all: The soft
leather briefcase with a camera hidden inside, its shutter activated
by a button on the bottom pressed by an Israeli agent who pretended
to happen by the house on Garibaldi Street on day in 1960, inquiring
about investments in the area. Here are the black and white images,
captured at an upward angle, of the man calling himself Ricardo
Klement: A thin bald figure gesturing with arms akimbo, some quality
of arrogance on display along with the actual prints, their
negatives, and even the cardboard sleeve of the Buenos Aries photo
shop that developed them.... Read this in full at
General Douglas MacArthur retired from the military in 1951, he
stated famously, "Old soldiers never die, they just fade away."
But five-star generals are not the only ones who never die:
never die, they just lose their drive.
never die, they just pine away.
don't die, they just lose their balance.
managers don't die, they just lose interest.
mechanics? They re-tire every day.
never retire, they just lose their bearings.
never retire, they just buzz off.
never retire, they just decompose.
never retire, they just wind down.
never retire, they just lose their faculties.
librarians never die, they just check out, become overdue, and lose
milkmaids never die, they just kick the bucket and lose their whey.
math professors never die, they just go off on a tangent.
mimes never die, they're just never heard from again.
PLACE OF PRAYER TO PLACE OF BEER
Richard Allen Greene
leafy, genteel north London neighborhood of Muswell Hill is well
stocked with stores, coffee bars, restaurants and apartments.
also has plenty of churches – at least four were built within a
hundred yards of each other, thanks to the generosity of the
developer who built Muswell Hill in the late 19th century.
turned out that was too many.
Presbyterians and Congregationalists merged in 1972, leaving Muswell
Hill with a church that had no congregation.
was nearly torn down, then saved by local protests, and was briefly
used as offices, abandoned, and finally turned into a pub in 1995.
visited the church-turned-beer-hall recently to take a look.... See
this in full at
future is not about what we have or don't have, or about what might
happen or what might not happen. Our future is all about Who we know
and how well we know Him.”
of you who love the LORD, hate evil! God guards the lives of his
faithful ones, delivering them from the power of the wicked.”
WEEK'S HYMN: Have Mercy
& Music: Ken Bible, 2002
our arrogance and pride
come to You.
our weakness and our guilt
look to You.
Lord, our Lord,
Lord, our Lord,
our trouble and our pain
come to You.
our darkness and our grief
look to You.
God of love and power
come to You.
are here, and You are now-
look to You.
through the yearly observances of holy Lent,
we may grow in understanding
the riches hidden in Christ
by worthy conduct pursue their effects.
our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.
FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS TODAY
DAILY BLESSING PACT
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 you!
with God and man
in the mail
to be found
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. 28:2).
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.]
looking for something or do you have something to sell? Let me know and
I'll put it in this newsletter.
Complete Gift Solution
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Skydiving: Falling Human to Break Sound Barrier?
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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
is good as long as I don't have to do anything differently.
Frank Coleman, Editor
for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!
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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have in Christ.
Min. Frank Coleman, 773-410-1483, email@example.com if
you'd like to participate in a men's discipleship program.
Life Ministries is located in Chicago, IL.
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