If things such as integrity, orthodoxy, or humility are important to you then you will find pastoral leadership somewhere else.
In either case, Haggard has been in the news recently after he started a new church in Colorado. Rather than humbly attempting to repair his family and his life he has stepped back into the irresistable limelight with the help of clever marketing and a PR image-makeover.
Where is the sorrow for his hypocrisy and adultery? Well, in Mr. Haggard’s own words he “over-repented.” That’s right he “over-repented” for preaching against homosexuality and other immoral actions all while visiting a gay-male prostitute and sharing various illegal drugs with said prostitute.
Can any of us ever “over-repent?” If you think you can “over-repent” then you have never repented enough.
Haggard feels he is now more an “everyman” because he understands sin and cusses. You know you are a slimeball when you give cussing a bad name.
For those of you interested, I have recently added two pages on the site:
Many people have asked for books that I have found helpful. On the “Recommended Reading” page I have listed a random selection of books and tried to arrange them somewhat topically.
I’ve also added a “Resources” page that has a few sermons and notes on it. I hope to add more in the future as I collect them from various sources around the “interweb.”
Jim West has pointed me to a National Enquirer article which links prosperity gospel huckster and TBN pseudo-miracle working heretic (Benny Hinn) with the overtly hypocritical and unapologetic divorceé (Paula White) in a “romantic relationship.”
I’m sure you are shocked that a televangelist might behave this way (allegedly).
If this proves to be true, I agree with Jim West that their offspring would most certainly be the antichrist.
I’ve been a fan of Andrew Peterson for a while now. His newest release (Counting Stars) was released today. My favorite song is the gospel-saturated tune “Dancing in the Minefields.” It is a song about commitment, marriage, and Christ-like love.
As such, I want to dedicate this to my beautiful wife, Whitney.
It’s harder than we dreamed, but I believe that’s what the promise is for…
And we bear the light of the Son of Man, so there’s nothing left to fear. So I’ll walk with you in the shadowlands, until the shadows disappear. ‘Cause He promised not to leave us, and His promises are true. So in the face of all this chaos, maybe I can dance with you.
While watching the ESPY’s I was particularly moved by the story of Ed Thomas.
After watching this story I did a little more online research and found that the depths of character in the Thomas family run deep. You can read for yourself a moving account that describes Ed Thomas as a man of sincere Christian commitment; continuing his dad’s legacy, Aaron Thomas has tried to forgive in the face of conflicting emotions and overwhelming doubt.
While attempting to come up with an ironic, hip, appropriate t-shirt for the Nansemond River Baptist Church Student Ministry I was inspired at Busch Gardens amusement park. I saw a number of “youth groups” running around wearing matching shirts. I want the young adults at NRBC to have a shirt that identifies them as a part of our “group” while still being able to satirize other groups that have matchy-matchy shirts. Here is the result.
I have been a serious fan of James Tealy since I worked alongside him in ministry during the Summer of 2004 (back when he was still James Thiele). We were on a M-Fuge team that helped students learn about God and minister in the city of Denver. James proved to be one of the most talented men I have ever been around. He is a gifted speaker and a talented musician. Above all, he has a great heart for the mission of God among the nations. His heart will not be missed on this new album, Open Hands.
I also picked up (i.e., downloaded digitally from Amazon.com) a copy of Matt Papa’s newest Scripture Songs and Hymns. It is always refreshing to find Scripture songs performed in an honest and artistic way. I find Papa’s music to be saturated with the truths of Scripture without falling into the usual CCM clichés.
As my friends will tell you, I am quite the “mac-vangelist.” When it comes to design, functionality, and overall coolness all other computer companies are trying to keep up with Apple. If there was ever a flaw in the Apple plan to take over the computer world, it would be there attempt to control everything from hardware to software. This sort of control provides unparalleled integration but also leads to problems when one’s personal creative endeavors hit an Apple imposed roadblock.
Apple controls apps for iphone/ipad and much of the content released in iTunes. As a result, when it comes to buying music online I almost exclusively turn to Amazon.com’s mp3 service.
First, Amazon allows you to purchase music in a DRM free (unrestricted) mp3 format. I don’t have to worry about how I will use my music on various computers and media devices.
Second, Amazon has seamlessly integrated purchasing with my iTunes player. As soon as I purchase music it is immediately downloaded and moved to my iTunes folder.
Third, Amazon is almost always cheaper per album and often has sales of entire albums for less than $5. The other day they had almost 20 albums they were giving away!
Finally, despite the expected seamlessness of the iTunes music store with iTunes, I find Amazon’s more traditional website easier to navigate.
I came across a brief video clip of C. J. Mahaney. He was offering advice backstage at the 2010 SBC Pastor’s conference. His simple advice was from 1 Timothy 4:16: “Watch your life and doctrine closely.”
I empathize deeply with C. J.’s concern. It is much easier for me to watch my doctrine than my life. I must be careful to pay close attention that the information I gain about God results in a life transformed to look like Christ. The result of any knowledge about God is a life that bears much fruit for His glory.
A timely reminder.
I have been musing recently about the way political conservatives and political liberals (those on the “right” and the “left”) view the past and future of America. In the middle of one of these moments of reflection I stumbled on a blog post by Doug Wilson. Wilson’s reflections on Glen Beck and the Bible provided motivation for me to jot down a few thoughts.
1. The problem with humanity is sin. The only way for humans to “fix” their sin problem is to “repent and believe.” To say it another way, the only way to fix the problem of humanity is to trust Jesus.
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins… but because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions — it is by grace you have been saved (Ephesians 2:1, 4-5).
2. Wilson makes clear in his post that one of the main problems in America is humanism. Both liberals and conservatives have a basic belief that mankind is “good” and “the explanation for evil is ignorance.” I see this sort of logic applied on both sides of the political system. The result is a belief that good logic and argument will be enough to convince people to agree with you. With the right information and the right decisions our society, the humanists argue, will be “fixed.” Both sides (the right and left) are unable to agree on which direction to take our country, but the underlying assumption is that American can be “fixed” by proper information.
I came across a really good illustration recently that speaks to this very point.
Imagine encountering a man’s body lying by the side of the road. You decide to pull over to check the man’s condition. As your car comes to a stop, you jump out and run toward him. Reaching down to check his pulse, you realize he has none. He’s dead and gone, perhaps due to a heart attack. What can you do? Based on his appearance, you deduce that the man may have suffered heart failure due to a lifetime of poor eating habits. Instantly, you leap to your feet, rush to the car, pull out a diet book, and begin screaming important information from its pages as you head back toward him: “Chapter 1: Eating for Health and Heart!”
Stop to examine the absurdity of this situation. No amount of information on eating habits is going to resurrect this man. He’s already dead. The only real solution would be for him to somehow obtain a new lease on life. In the same way, no amount of education will change the heart of a spiritually dead person. Life is the only solution to death.
Andrew Farley, The Naked Gospel