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Archive for January, 2010

Controversy, Controversy

Good Morning!  Here’s an update for those who are curious about how the ministry is going here in Nebraska.  Last night we had about 40 kids total – it was pretty exciting to see how God is already beginning to work in this ministry. Next week we split high school and middle school, so your continued prayer is greatly appreciated.

Today I was reading another blog and I thought everyone else should read it too, so without further ado:

“We had a great team of people show up for Atlanta Gay Pride Event. We are going to post stories and recaps here…Stay tuned:

Standing in our vendor booth at the Atlanta Gay Pride Festival caused a commotion of compassion.  Rarely, was there a minute that went by that we were not able to give a white bracelet to the attenders that simply said, “We’re Sorry” and pink bracelets that said, “It’s True, He does.”   The first, begged the question, “Sorry for what?”  For Craig and I, this last stop on the Jesus Loves You This I Know book tour, offered us an opportunity to apologize to the gay community for the way many Christians, Evangelicals, and Fundamentalist have made the gay community their punching bag over the last three decades.  The second reiterated the truth that we have shared is more than a cliché, “Jesus Loves You.”

Beyond the vendor area and along the parade route, we were able to hand out more than 1000 bottles of water wrapped with the aged old truth, Jesus Loves You This I Know.  In the midst of such a diverse culture, we realized that the traction our book has found created the opportunity for a new conversation that starts with spirituality rather than sexuality.

The book is an easy read to take back the message of Jesus that has been high-jacked by zealots and hate mongers who claim to be God’s spoke persons.  At Atlanta Pride, we had hundreds of conversations, one person at a time, that helped close the gap that has created polarizing propaganda on both sides.  For us, it’s simple, Jesus’ love is available for anyone.”

Jason and Craig

Check out the videos, but even more read the book Jesus Loves You This I Know by Craig Gross and Jason Harper.

http://www.jesuslovesyou.net/blogs/news/atlantagaypridevolunteerinfo.html#content

Thoughts and comments?

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Good morning!  Last weekend was enjoyable; I went to Lincoln to watch a couple teens play indoor soccer.  Then Sunday Shannon and two of the youth preformed a great skit at church.  But my favorite part came Saturday night where I received an unsavory comment.

The comment was based on the changes that are being made to the church and the things that the person doesn’t like.  The person feels that I am ruining the church to the point that they can’t come anymore.

 Now, some would take a comment that was made towards them and dwell on it and take it as a complete insult.  I, on the other hand, take it as a compliment.  A compliment?   Well, in the Bible it says, “Do not be surprised if the world hates you for my sake.  For it hated me first”.  Now, I am not saying that this person is of the world, but sometimes we get so comfortable it’s like we are in the world.  

But truthfully, change is refreshing and gets out of our comfort zone.  I have a prime example of this.  A year ago, my mom could not text, Facebook, and could barely use a computer (no offense mom).  But with a little effort, she now has a cell phone that she uses to text often and she updates her Facebook status more than I do.  Change keeps us from staying in our comfort level. Change is necessary in order to adapt with the times.  Churches and youth ministry, doctors, hospitals, and other business all have to adapt and change with the culture.

Therefore, in my eyes a negative comment, even delivered as a rude insult, is a compliment because it means that you are rocking the boat and making changes.  Keep this in mind next time you feel insulted – sometimes insults are the best indicators that you are making difference.

Thoughts and comments?

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The Book of Eli

To my followers, I’m sorry I haven’t been keeping up with Frosted Flakes.  The internet connection in my new office has been sporadic, but I do believe it is fixed now.  Well, let’s jump right in.

Two nights ago, I went to a movie by myself.  This isn’t particularly surprising, since Shannon and I don’t have the same taste in movies.  So what did I see?  I went and saw “The Book of Eli”.  Now, if you have not heard of this epic flick, let me enlighten you. It’s about a man name Eli.  Eli’s world is a dry and weary one. There’s no water, and he walks through the ash of a jagged place, where men eat men and the sky’s torn in two.

Godforsaken, many would call this dystopian earth. But God is not gone, nor forgotten. For Eli carries, along with his gloves and guns and cruel, broad blade, something special. Something sacred.

A book. The Book.

In the age gone by, Bibles were burned by the bushel. They caused the war that tore a hole through the sky, the people said. It’s a book of evil, the people said. It must be destroyed—wiped from the face of the earth.

But they didn’t burn them all. Eli found one—or it found him—and for the last 31 years he’s carried the thing, protecting it by day, reading it by night. He carries it west, always west, where the sun comes down from heaven and seems to set upon the ground. The rest you will have to see I don’t want to ruin it for you.

This movie is rated R; there is no sex and only some language, but considerable violence.   After all, Eli protects this book with his life.

You may be thinking, Chad, it’s a Hollywood movie, so big deal, they have a Bible in it.  My friends, I promise you – see this movie and you won’t regret it!  I walked away inspired.  For 30 years, this man has been walking to an unknown destination led only by faith, and every night, he reads his Bible.  Without giving away the ending, all I am going to say is that it’s inspiring and powerful to see a man protect, cherish, love, dedicate, and endure all things for this Bible.

To think, I probably have 15-20 Bibles, and sadly to say, sometimes a day or two will go by when I don’t read from a single one. Eli made his Bible seem as essential as water or air.  He would do anything to keep it, to protect it, and to honor it.  In biblical times, that’s how it was with the Ten Commandments; they were guarded and protected, carried through wars, and sealed in back of the temple.  What happened to the honor and privilege of having a Bible?  Why don’t we read it and recognize its power like people once did?  I wish I knew that answer.

Please share your thoughts and comments.

See this movie, hide your eyes through the violence, but open your eyes to see Hollywood portray the Bible so accurately.  It doesn’t happen often.

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Finally Back!

Folks, it’s been awhile, but “Frosted Flakes” is finally back.  It took a while, but now I’m here. Where did I go? Well, for those who don’t know, I am now the new youth director at Norfolk Presbyterian Church.  Our four day drive went well – we had some interesting stops, but those stories are for another time.

Truthfully, I have been so busy that I haven’t had a quiet moment to think. So give me a second…

So, the winter Olympics are fast approaching.  When I think of winter Olympics I think of athletes in training.  Much like an athlete prepares for a race, we have to continue to race with the end in mind.  My sister, who is an amazing swimmer, has often told me how she visualizes the finish; how she sees herself taking each stroke and each kick.  She sees every stroke into the water and out of the water. I believe this is what makes her so great.   

It is important to remember this same technique in our faith.  2 Timothy 4:7 says, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”  We have to continue to train, to push, to persevere; because if we don’t have the end in mind, at times it seems like such an arduous journey that we can’t make it.  It is at those times when we lean on the strength of others and of God to pull us through. But we must continue to train so we are prepared when the road gets tough.  It would be so easy for a sprinter to throw in the towel if he trips, or a swimmer to quit because their goggles fell off.  It’s just as easy to get tripped up in life if unexpected things take place, such as divorce, death, cancer, illness, miscarriage, depression, etc.  That’s why it is even more important to train.  This means taking time to know and read our Bibles, and making every effort to be connected with God.  That way, when turmoil strikes, we are trained to overcome.

Thoughts?

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