Monday, April 30, 2012

Laborers Together

So, this summer I will be working at Northland Camp.  I will be working as a Junior Counselor, which is of course with the little kids.  As a camp staff member, I'm supposed to raise $500 to support the ministry at Northland.  I've already donated the $500 required, but I know there is still a great need for support, so if you could follow this link and donate whatever you feel led to donate, I would appreciate it!

If you can't give any money, that's completely fine, but if you could pray for me this summer, I would appreciate that as well!  It's going to be a long, but fun, summer and I look forward to the opportunities I'll have to disciple a bunch of little kids!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Do I really love my Lord?

When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him,“Feed my lambs.” He said to him a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.”  He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was grieved because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep.  Truly, truly, I say to you, when you were young, you used to dress yourself and walk wherever you wanted, but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and carry you where you do not want to go.”  (This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God.) And after saying this he said to him, “Follow me.”
John 21:15-19

Dr. Olson preached from this passage of scripture in Chapel this morning.  He posed the question, "Do you really love God?"  I you REALLY love God?!  We as Christians would say that we do...but would our actions show it?  Will the evidence of this love be clear in our lives?

Our reaction to this dilema, as Christians, leads us to conform outwardly.  We think..."If I start doing things for God, and getting busy at church, or I'll go a missions trip, then I'm loving God."  Outward conformity to our ideas of what a Christian is supposed to do, is worthless.

I know I've talked about this before, but It is so easy to forget it in my sad worthless Child of God existence (almost said "My Walk with the Lord", but I realized that makes it sound like it's my effort that makes me walk with God...left to myself, I would not have sought after God).

A truly, deep, humble, broken Christian life is marked not by outward conformity, but by a seeking after God.  Seeking to know and understand Him more and more.  It also means asking God to give us the love that He loves us with.  To be honest, though...we can never achieve this on this earth.  It is truly impossible to love God, and others as much as He loves us...but He can teach us how to get close...but we must never get to the point where we feel we've "arrived"...for it is at that moment that we are so puffed up in our own pride, that we truly have not "arrived"...

When a man is getting better, he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still in him. When a man is getting worse, he understands his own badness less and less.
-C. S. Lewis

Monday, April 16, 2012

Bird Nerd Central!

Since I've come to Northland I've been trying to figure out what this noisy bird is that I often hear off in the distance on campus. At first I caught short glimpses of it off in the distance, and it looked really big. Finally I saw it before I left for spring break, and it looked like some kind of crane. It definitely wasn't a Great Blue Heron because it flies with it's neck extended. Well, I kept meaning to look it up, but I kept yesterday on the way to church, I saw one, and once again I thought, "I need to look it up, to see if I can find out what it is!" So, this morning I's a...drum roll please?! It's a...Sandhill Crane!

Wisconsin and Michigan are in it's summer breeding range. Their range does not extend into Ohio and Pennsylvania, which explains why I don't remember ever seeing them before. 

I'm such a bird nerd...

Here's some info on it for my fellow bird nerds.  Click here.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Student Conversation with Professor

I found the following conversation on facebook a little while ago.  The post claimed the student in this coversation was Alber Einstein, but I did some internet searching, because I didn't want to post something that made a false claim.  Every relaiable website a viewed said it probably wasn't him.  But there's no solid evidence that he didn't's a very interesting and thought provoking conversation regardless.  Read on!

Professor: You are a Christian, aren’t you, son?

Student: Yes, sir.

Professor: So, you believe in GOD?

Student: Absolutely, sir.

Professor: Is GOD good?

Student: Sure.

Professor: Is GOD all powerful?

Student: Yes.

Professor: My brother died of cancer even though he prayed to GOD to heal him. Most of us would attempt to help others who are ill. But GOD didn’t. How is this GOD good then? Hmm?

(Student was silent.)

Professor: You can’t answer, can you ? Let’s start again, young fella. Is GOD good?

Student: Yes.

Professor: Is Satan good?

Student: No.

Professor: Where does Satan come from?

Student: From … GOD …

Professor: That’s right. Tell me son, is there evil in this world?

Student: Yes.

Professor: Evil is everywhere, isn’t it ? And GOD did make everything. Correct?

Student: Yes.

Professor: So who created evil?

(Student did not answer.)

Professor: Is there sickness? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All these terrible things exist in the world, don’t they?

Student: Yes, sir.

Professor: So, who created them?

(Student had no answer.)

Professor: Science says you have 5 Senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. Tell me, son, have you ever seen GOD?

Student: No, sir.

Professor: Tell us if you have ever heard your GOD?

Student: No , sir.

Professor: Have you ever felt your GOD, tasted your GOD, smelt your GOD? Have you ever had any sensory perception of GOD for that matter?

Student: No, sir. I’m afraid I haven’t.

Professor: Yet you still believe in Him?

Student: Yes.

Professor: According to Empirical, Testable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says your GOD doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son?

Student: Nothing. I only have my faith.

Professor: Yes, faith. And that is the problem Science has.

Student: Professor, is there such a thing as heat?

Professor: Yes.

Student: And is there such a thing as cold?

Professor: Yes.

Student: No, sir. There isn’t.

(The lecture theater became very quiet with this turn of events.)

Student: Sir, you can have lots of heat, even more heat, superheat, mega heat, white heat, a little heat or no heat. But we don’t have anything called cold. We can hit 458 degrees below zero which is no heat, but we can’t go any further after that. There is no such thing as cold. Cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, sir, just the absence of it.

(There was pin-drop silence in the lecture theater.)

Student: What about darkness, Professor? Is there such a thing as darkness?

Professor: Yes. What is night if there isn’t darkness?

Student: You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is the absence of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light. But if you have no light constantly, you have nothing and its called darkness, isn’t it? In reality, darkness isn’t. If it is, well you would be able to make darkness darker, wouldn’t you?

Professor: So what is the point you are making, young man?

Student: Sir, my point is your philosophical premise is flawed.

Professor: Flawed? Can you explain how?

Student: Sir, you are working on the premise of duality. You argue there is life and then there is death, a good GOD and a bad GOD. You are viewing the concept of GOD as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, Science can’t even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism, but has never seen, much less fully understood either one. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing.
Death is not the opposite of life: just the absence of it. Now tell me, Professor, do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey?

Professor: If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, yes, of course, I do.

Student: Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?

(The Professor shook his head with a smile, beginning to realize where the argument was going.)

Student: Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor. Are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you not a scientist but a preacher?

(The class was in uproar.)

Student: Is there anyone in the class who has ever seen the Professor’s brain?

(The class broke out into laughter. )

Student: Is there anyone here who has ever heard the Professor’s brain, felt it, touched or smelt it? No one appears to have done so. So, according to the established Rules of Empirical, Stable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says that you have no brain, sir. With all due respect, sir, how do we then trust your lectures, sir?

(The room was silent. The Professor stared at the student, his face unfathomable.)

Professor: I guess you’ll have to take them on faith, son.

Student: That is it sir … Exactly! The link between man and GOD is FAITH. That is all that keeps things alive and moving.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Though many important things must be learned about effective leadership, the most important thing comes only by spending significant time at the feet of Jesus; becoming mesmerized by his heartbeat and captured by his love.
-"Introducing World Missions: A Biblical, Historical, and Practical Survey." By A. Scott Moreau, Gary Corwin, and Gary B. McGee.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Wonderful, Merciful Savior

by: Eric Wyse and Dawn Rogers

Wonderful, merciful Savior!
Precious Redeemer and Friend!
Who would have thought that a Lamb
Could rescue the souls of men?
Oh you rescue the souls of men!

Counselor, Comforter, Keeper!
Spirit we long to embrace!
You offer hope when our hearts have
Hopelessly lost the way.
Oh, we hopelessly lost the way.

You are the One that we praise!
You are the One we adore!
You give the healing and grace
Our hearts always hunger for.
Oh, our hearts always hunger for.

Almighty, infinite Father!
Faithfully loving Your own!
Here in our weakness You find us
Falling before Your throne.
Oh, we're falling before Your throne.

You are the One that we praise!
You are the One we adore!
You give the healing and grace
Our hearts always hunger for.
Oh, our hearts always hunger for.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Well, I had to make a difficult decision today.  I ended my relationship with Charity.  It was extremely hard to do, but it had to be done.  Let's just say, I made a lot of mistakes, and I had to end it before my mistakes got even worse.  We're not completely closing the door to any future relationship again...but at this point we're done for a while...

Please pray for the both of us as we try to learn through this experience, and strive to become more like Christ.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Be Yourself

One thing that God has been teaching me lately, is how much I like to keep myself isolated from other people.  I've always been very good at opening up to people in casual conversation, and I'm pretty good at getting to know people, I always have been.  But God showed me lately, that I too often still keep a wall up for protection.  I'm so afraid of letting people see the real me, that I keep that wall up.

This has caused me to often spend far too much time in my room not socializing with people.  I see people out in the hall talking in the dorm, and just keep going on my way getting done what I need to do, with no thought of how others around me are doing.

Through my relationship with Charity God revealed this to me, and I'm so thankful for it!

As of late, God's been teaching me how to let go of my fears and just cut lose and have fun with people.  Granted, as a result, I do not get my homework done as early, and as quickly as I would like, but I know it's better for me to do this.  Christianity should be about building relationships, and I'm so thankful for the good friends I've been developing this semester, and I look forward to other people God will enable me to become friends with.