Thursday, June 05, 2008

Session 12 - Chuck Smith

  • A bitter Christian is no credit to the Gospel

  • Tearing, looking at the negative

  • I have so many things to rejoice over

  • Not many verses that tell us to gripe

  • Many that tell us to build up and rejoice

  • It's problematic to find that which is evil & camp on it, instead of finding what is good.

  • Abiding in Jesus is fullness of joy

    • Difference between happiness and joy

      • Happiness - based on externals

      • Joy - based on the Lord, not related to outward circumstances, based on relationship w/Jesus

  • If I am in a right relationship with Jesus, I WILL have joy

    • Rejoice evermore - should/needs to be a constant

  • Prayer

    • Communion

    • Petition

      • Jesus encourages us to pray for our needs

    • Intercession

      • Where I see beyond my own borders

      • Take your cares, make them your prayers

  • I can't give thanks for everything, unless I'm convinced that God is working everything for the good

  • The Spirit is grieved & quenched when we don't submit to His leading

    • When I react in fear

  • Ninja Chuck vs. The Fly

  • Despise not prophecies

    • Keep services orderly

    • No, peeps are not going to just stand up in public, general services & start babbling off

      • "yes...I'm quenching... your spirit, anyway..."

    • At the same time - don't despise prophecy

      • ...only, test all things, that you might hold fast to what is good

    • The teaching of the Word is not that spectacular - but it's lasting.

  • Abstain from every appearance of evil

    • For pastors - tnis is especially important

    • I cannot be too careful at this point

  • The natural mind cannot understand the things of the Spirit

  • Session 11 - Warren Smith

    Keep in mind...these are just my raw notes

    • Part of our armor is not being ignorant of the enemy's devices

    • N.A. no longer referring to themselves as the "New Age"

      • Instead: the "New Spirituality"

      • ...the "Alternative Spirituality"

    • Eph. 5:12-13

    • "Take heed unto yourselves and unto the flock"

    • M. Scot Peck ( I do remember him...)

    • Problem of "contemplative prayer": no warnings about testing the spirits

    • Warren's encouragement: be careful

    • "The ECM seems to think it has a handle on helping people."

    • Stereotype of Bible-believers: 'oh, I'm just waiting for Armageddon to come."

    • For antichrist to have credibility, he would need to have a lot of people calling themselves Christians giving him credibility

    • Tony Jones calls Mat. 24 Jesus' "harrangue"

    • It all comes down to the Cross of Calvary

    • Acts 16:16 - there are divining spirits

    • "It was like a 'reverse sinner's prayer'."

    • "It was meant to be - but meant to be by whom...?"

    • Is the devil entirely predictable?

    • There is coming a false world peace (true, dat)

    • "Atonement" in the N.A. is the realization that I am a part of God

    • "We have an adversary - let's make sure he doesn't get in."

    • N.A. is saying if you don't recognize your own divinity, you're a hindrance.

    • ECM - "We have a hope-filled eschatology!"

      • ...well whoopdie-do. (I really liked that, to be honest.)

    • "There is no more effective method of concealment than publishing it (what you want to
      conceal) openly."

    • A Return To Love - really first book in Oprah's book club

    • "Self-centeredness" in the N.A. is in not recognizing you're God.

      • Oneness vs. Separation

      • "Separation" is when you don't believe in your own divinity.

    • The Aquarian Conspiracy - (I remember that book)

    • Teilhard deChardin

    • Eric Butterworth: The Power Within You.

    • Warren believes Oprah has a zeal for God (directly implying she's not evil), but according
      to her own wisdom.

    • There's a lot of N.A.'ers who used to be evangelical Christians

    • The Beautiful Side Of Evil

    • Alice Bailey - Emergence, used over 1000 times

    Session 10 - Norman Geisler

    • The methods change, but the message should not.

      • Conviction Without Compromise - book

    • "In essentials, unity; in nonessentials, liberty; in all things, charity."

      • The problem is - nobody knows what the essentials are anymore

    • Post-Protestant

    • Post-Orthodox

    • Post-Denom.

    • Post-Doctrinal

    • Post-Individualism

      • ...and much more I couldn't write down quickly enough.


    • "It aims at something else, and shoots itself."

    • Anti-absolutism

    • Anti-exclusivism

      • This is a major problem with MacLaren & Pagitt & others

    • Law of non-contradiction (A cannot be not-A)

    • Anti-foundationalism

      • Stanley Grenz - Beyond Foundationalism

      • "He got Descart before de horse..."

      • "Opposites (A is non-A) can both be true..."

        • The inverse cannot be true - think about it...

    • Anti-rational

      • Fideism

      • "...ever learning and not able to come to the truth..."

      • "If I have to believe it because it's absurd, I wouldn't believe it."

    • Anti-objectivism

      • All meaning is culturally relative

      • Skepticism ought to be skeptical of skepticism

    • Anti-realism

    • Anti-infalliblism

    • Anti-propositionalism

      • The Faith is more than doctrine, but never less than doctrine

      • Ideas are important - doctrine is important!

    • Post-orthodoxy

      • Unity over orthodoxy

      • Cannot surrender essentials

      • Cannot "sacrifice the right to be right"

    • Anti-condemnationalism


      • More & more ECMmers are coming out of the universalist closet - that's true.

      • There is a hell because God is loving - and man is free (sorry, Dr. White. :mrgreen: )

    • Anti-inerrantism

      • All other essential doctrines devolve directly from an inerrant Text

      • Everybody's making truth claims

      • Augustine's Dictum

    • Well, he seems to dig Driscoll, so I'll listen more...

    • for the PowerPoint

      • Get This!!!

    • ECM very much tends to be not only theologically liberal, but also politically

    I am being censored

    No I'm not.

    But you panicked, didn't you?

    Actually, I'll need to upload the last devo and last three sessions' notes later - probably much later - my fellow Michigan pastors, as well as my pastor are driving some brothers up to LA to catch their flights out tonight, so the rest of us are going to hang on the beach, get California fish tacos, and basically maximize fellowship before we all head back to the mission field.

    Wednesday, June 04, 2008

    Session 9 - David Barton

    So my palmtop boogered again.

    Windows Mobile.


    David Barton's session was quite good. I was already familiar with the material he'd spoke on - I first heard Pete Marshall at Horizon back when I was first born again, and since then had done my own intensive reading into America's history - but the way he connected it and how he put it all together - awesome.

    I didn't go to the Wallbuilder's thing this year - I chuckled when the invite came and promptly circle-filed it.

    If the Lord blesses and I'm able to go next year, I will.

    Christians - vote.

    Vote your conscience, truly; but vote.

    Session 8 - Pedro Garcia

    I had heard Pedro speak (I believe it was) last year, as a devotional speaker.

    I liked him then, I like him now.

    Also, I apologize for the scatterbrain-style note-taking - this is how I jot notes on my HTC 6800. It's more "stream-of-consciousness" than true notetaking.

    Mea culpa.

    • Paul lived as though each day could be his last

      • Lived in absolute abandon

    • We need to be passionate about what we do

    • Conviction - with heart, with faith

    • Paul was passionate about the church, the Bride of Christ

    • I need to grow in the gift of exhortation

    • Paul tells us what time it is, & then what to do in that time

    • In light of Jesus' soon return, it's not time to disengage, but to engage

    • A good leader is a good follower

      • A shepherd is also himself a sheep

      • We would be foolish to ignore the wisdom of what has gone before

      • Not only look for Timothies, but also Pauls

      • We need to use wisdom in who we allow to speak into our lives

    • We (I) need the elder statesmen of the movement, & the Church at large

    • Take the time to thank those who do the work in the fellowship

    • "Ministry is the extreme sports of the Christian world. It's for crazy people."

      • It's intense, pain-filled work

      • No room for lazy pastors that won't give themselves to the last full measure to love the sheep

      • It is a labor of love - or it is nothing

      • We need to be involved with the sheep

    • We are not to lord it over the flock

      • Our authority - which is real - is for their growth, not our benefit

    • The true pastor labors for, loves, & serves the people

    • In one sense, ministry is always warfare

      • DEAL WITH IT.

    • Many times, we teach the what - but we need to teach the why.

    • We need to remember that not everybody is a pastor

      • So don't get uptight when some don't get it

      • Just keep plowing & serving & exhorting

    • A loving shepherd will warn those who need it

      • Firmly

      • But humbly & with a servant's heart

    • God's eyes are always on the timid & weak

      • love them

    • Be patient with all.

    • People will hurt you as a pastor - love them anyway - and don't get a bad attitude

      • Watch out how we (I) respond when this happens

      • No, everybody does not have an agenda

      • Want to minister with the heart of Jesus?

        • Stop being paranoid

        • Love even (especially) when it hurts

    • NEVER retaliate

    • ALWAYS pursue what is good

      • Not just for yourself

      • But for all

    • Pursue the heart of Christ

    • Time is short - don't lose focus!

    Session 7 - Greg Laurie

    • "It's later than it's ever been before."

    • Live in light of the immanent return of Jesus

    • We have been called to proclaim the Gospel, and remind them of the urgency of the time

    • Bible prophecy should stir me to purity & godly living

    • The teaching of Jesus' return is a litmus test of where one is with the Lord

      • If I'm in love w/Him, that would excite me

      • But if I'm not...

    • Chuck didn't reach Greg by trying to be relevant - he was biblical and authentic

    • Passion to reach the lost

    • There was no youth group.

    • There was (an is) an emphasis on the immanent return of Jesus

    • If antichrist is close, Jesus is closer...

    • I am to:

      • Wake up

        • Get out of "spiritual cruise control"

        • Is it an alarm clock or a calling that gets me out of bed

        • Give younger men an opportunity to speak @ church

        • The Sixties are over.

        • Again: enjoy the day of small beginnings

        • Take risks

        • If you fail - fail big!!!

        • Peter sunk - but nobody else walked on water

        • Faithfulness is success

      • Sober up

        • Clear-headed

      • Suit up

        • The helmet - protect my thoughts

        • Worry? Why?

        • I need to train myself to pray instead of worry.

          • Conditioned reflexes can become natural reflexes

        • "Lord, this is your church..."

        • Finish well

        • "We must replace one passion with another passion"

    • I must avoid anything that hinders God's calling.

      • ANYTHING.

      • " Christ's men from head to foot..."

    Devotions 2

    • Some are experiencing the Father's favor

      • Growth, blessing

    • Some are experiencing "the pit"

      • ...the lack of the previous

    • Some are experiencing temptations

    • Trials are a part of ministry

    • There are temptations to compare our ministry to others

      • Enjoy the days of small things

    • It takes effort to maintain a devotional life

    • Joseph wasn't rewarded for resisting temptation - he was thrown in prison

      • There is a cost

    • The jacket of triumph can be the most dangerous

    Between Sessions

    The Afterglow last night was...indescribable. I have rarely experienced the presence of the Spirit in such a sweet, powerful way.

    After this morning's sessions (the notes of which I'll post shortly - I'm typing this as fast as I can before lunch - priorities and all - in the Overflowing Cup), and during the workshops (I again played hooky opted to rest and unpack the sessions' messages), I went to the front desk to pick up a package that my lovely and gracious wife sent to me. That woman - that insanely Proverbs-31-awesome woman - sent me a "DAD ROCKS" t-shirt (this is the first conference where I'm a daddy) and some sugar-free Reeses Cups and homemade sugar-free chocolate-chip cookies.

    Have I mentioned yet how very much I adore that woman?

    I also got to hang for a brief bit with John "Deadman Walking" Duncan and Chad "SMP" Myhre, before heading into the Cup.

    Speaking of the Cup, tonight - 8pm Michigan time. Mellon Arena. I will again be getting text message updates from my lovely and gracious wife. Go, Wings.


    I got to talk a bit more with Tom Stipe; we're both...looking forward to Warren's session. I am honestly interested to hear what he has to say. More to come.

    And in answer to the dude who chuckled at my having mentioned the "Roman Spa" earlier - hey; it's not my name for it. That's what the map we were given at check-in calls it.

    And here it is:

    Session 6 - Tommy Ice

    My battery died a cruel death before Dr. Ice took the stage, and I didn't have any paper to take notes the way the ancients used to.

    So, I shall summarize.

    Basically, I was impressed with Dr. Ice's presentation - but then again, I have always liked him. He's pretty cool for a Baptist.

    Yes, Telos; that was a joke.

    Many still don't like that Calvary Chapel stands solidly and unapologetically on the Blessed Hope; too bad.

    One of the things I very much appreciated was the sampling of pre-Darby immanence statements; for those of my fellow brothers-in-arms who didn't get to make it this year (and are still okay with being part of "our tribe," whatever that's supposed to mean), get the DVDs and watch this presentation.

    He's not the scholar that Walvoord was but - who is?

    I very much also appreciated that Ice stayed for the afterglow. Very impressed.

    Tuesday, June 03, 2008

    Before I forget...

    Now, how lame is this:

    I'm walking out of one of the sessions - Damien's I think - and I see one of my idols a man I worship from afar a dude I think is super-spiffy - David Guzik, whose online print and audio commentaries I have shamelessly copied into my study notes all but plagiarized used a bit...and he says to me, "Hi, Mike!"

    I felt like a teenaged girl in a Menudo show. (Menudo is still groovy, right...?) He knew me! He said my name! I'm never washing these eyballs again! I--

    --oh, no wait...I'm wearing a nametag.


    What's the saddest of all is that I thought for sure I was immune to hero worship.

    Stupid flesh...

    Session 5 - Mark Hitchcock

    I have never heard Mark Hitchcock speak. I was honestly a little apprehensive about this session, since a proper critique of Preterism is very, very difficult to do fairly in one hour, and honestly my fellow dispies tend to not do their homework very well on this subject.

    But given the obvious time constraint, I thought Mark did remarkably well.

    • Primary eschatologies:

      • Preterism

        • Full

        • Partial

      • Historicist

      • Idealist

      • Futurist

    • Hitchcock does differentiate between Full & Partial Preterism

    • Full Preterism is heretical

      • Caveat: you can hold to F.P., & not necessarily be a heretic, though the tendency is very much there.

    • Partial P. are brothers

      • They believe in a literal Second Coming

    • Hanegraaff is an example of a P. Pret./Idealist

      • He denies it, but hey...

    • (Hitchcock is an engaging speaker)

    • "If you don't label yourself, others will label you."

    • Some very articulate & influential brothers are actively promoting Pret. (Sproul, DeMar, Hanegraaff)

    • Many people are just tired of date-setting & sensationalism among inconsistent dispies

    • Grammatico-Historical hermeneutic is an indispensible cornerstone of good eschatology

    • Pret. use Matthew as the "timing key" for Rev.

      • 10:23 - the "Coming" was judgment on Israel in A.D. 70

      • Mat. 16 (answered by ch.17, xfiguration)

      • Mat. 26, (but Caiaphas died approx. A.D. 48, per evidence from ossuary)

      • Mat.24:34 -> Cornerstone of Preterism

        • All hinges on "this generation"

        • Did every eye see Him when He came in supposed judgment?

          • No.

          • Ooops. (for the Pret.)

        • Dr. Walvoord: the fig tree was a natural figure

          • Beware of date-setting!

        • "This generation" is the one alive when these things begin to be fulfilled.

    • One question by the disciples: when will this be, & what events signal them?

    • "You will not see Me until you say, 'Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!'"

      • Implies a gap in time

      • Implies ethnic Israel will cry out for Him before 2nd Coming

    • Didache regards 2nd. Com. Was future to it

    • Pret. is primarily/essentially about the dest. of the Temple, end of the Old Covenant, divorce of Israel

    • Preterists: small numbers are literal, but large numbers are literal

      • ...unless it becomes too inconvenient, then small #'s are symbolic, too

    • Rev. is the bill of divorcement of Israel to Preterism

    • Nero is the Beast of Rev.13

      • ...according to Pret.

    • The Achilles' Heel of Pret. is the dating of the Book of Rev.

    I was doubly-blessed this that though I was still consigned to the overflow, I got to hang with Chik Chikeles, Eric Cartier, and Sandy Adams. Eventually Bill Desrocher came by, too.

    ...but Chik apparently didn't have quite the same opinion about Mark's session that I did...

    ...I'm just saying, is all...

    Session 4 - Damien Kyle

    This conference just keeps on getting better and better. After sitting with Tom Stipe in the overflow room during Roger Wing's first workshop, getting to ask him some questions, then a great lunch of BBQ out under God's glorious (if somewhat hot - thank God He called me to Michigan) sky, I had my non-existent socks blown off by Damien "The 21st Century's Chucky Spurgeon" Kyle.



    • Paul was in Thessalonica only three Sabbaths

      • Despite that brevity, a healthy church was established

      • The believers were living & thinking as if Jesus could return any minute

        • There is a direct correlation between the one & the other

    • Paul believed that the doctrine of the Rapture had/has a very powerful influence on the Church

      • Does this expectation dominate my thinking...?

    • One of the most important influences of the doctrine: a concern for practical holiness

    • Purity begins with knowing God's standard:

      • V.3 -> abstain from sexuality

        • Includes fornication

        • Adultery

        • Prostitution

        • Etc.

      • Paul purposefully uses a very broad term in porneia

    • I must, as an act of my will, continually choose to make God's standard my standard

      • And I must cultivate a desire to live a holy life

      • Gotta bring the "want to" to the table

        • It's not enough to know what to do

    • God is the source

      • He gives the desire and the power to live holy

    • Do I hold the commitment to live after God?

    • My desire to live pure must come from a realization that my life is not my own - Jesus bought
      at terrible price

      • And so my life is set apart for Him - for His pleasure & use

    • I need to remember - my God has the right to demand whatever He wants from me

      • A commitment to sustained holy living was the mark of the Apostles & great men of faith

    • There is a price to pay

    • Seemingly harmless things, that I think I can control

      • I may have a technical right to engage in things that are not expedient to holiness & purity

    • When I no longer view my life as sanctified - I set myself up for a fall

      • I never come to the point I can say I've "paid my dues" and can "relax"

    • Pastors aren't called because they're so holy

      • Instead, because our Lord knows if He doesn't keep us busy with spiritual things, we'd booger it

        • AMEN.

    • I must become wholly a slave of righteousness

      • Otherwise I'll become a slave of sin

    • I must maintain a commitment to this

      • I must willingly & purposefully sow to the spirit

    • The fear of the Lord - especially in this - is good

    • Do I really realize the cost of sexual sin?

      • To me? My witness?

      • My wife?

      • My son?

      • The church I get to pastor?

    • Fear God's retribution to shepherds who fall in this!

      • The fear (terror, dread) of God is clean (and cleansing)

    • My ultimate motive for pure living: to please my God.

      • He's been so good, so gracious, so longsuffering

    • Maintaining of a love relationship with God that means more to me than the temptation

      • It takes a passion to conquer a passion

      • Do I love my God more than I hate my sin?

    • Daily "quiet time"

    • The "how":
      tho power of the Holy Spirit

      • The baptism, & then the continual re-filling

    Between Sessions

    So most of my brothers-in-arms are in the workshops currently.

    I can wait for the MP3s for the workshop sessions for today.

    So I head back, drawn like Mark "Blankety-Blank" Driscoll to controversy, to the Overflowing Cup.

    Robert Hall (who was once a Lieutenant on my ship, the USS Horne - also here - but long before I came onboard in 1992) pretty much literally knocked me out of line just as I reached the front and was ready to order...and then cruelly absconded with my bill, paying for me.

    The cad.

    I sit down to check e-mail,
    upload my notes for David Rosales' session (which, by the way, blew my mind - this is one that the servanthood at CC Lakeshore will listen to, definitely), enjoy my Lieutenant-bough-mocha, realize that MySpace is blocked here so I can't update that until I get back to the lodge, and see, sitting across from me, also skipping school the workshop sessions, Tim "Doulos" Burns.

    Sitting at the table directly to my left is Dennis Agajanian, encouraging a young lady who wants to get into professional music. He doesn't know the meaning of the phrase "inside voice," so I can't help but to overhear...and be tremendously blessed.

    Other than the fact that I miss my wife & son something fierce, and that I can't believe I haven't gone into the hot pools yet, it's a pretty good day so far...

    Session 3 - David Rosales

    • We all go through tough times But it's what God shows us through the tough times that really matter

    • Emphasize the (written) Word of God - it points infallibly to the (living) Word of God

    • "I am eternally grateful to you."

      • That's what's in the balance

    • "We're not in it for budgets & bodies."

    • "My people can watch the news if they want that - what they need from the pulpit is the Word of God."

    • I need to model the Word, not just teach it.

      • I must impart my life to the people

      • They can read my notes if it's just about Bible study disconnected from a life that reflects it

    • Common question I'm going to hear: "Do you also want to go away?"

    • Affliction & anguish bring that into my life

      • But they're an indispensible part of discipleship

      • A part of being conformed to Jesus' image

      • "the saw & chisel are cruel tools, but are needed to take crude stone & make it what it needs to be."

    • Tozer - not a megachurch pastor, but very influential - pshaw with numbers.

      • It's more about living it

    • Psalm 119:71

    • Spurgeon: "if we would be scholars, we must be sufferers. God's word is best read by wet eyes."

    • "To whom shall I go? You only have the words of life"

    • Afflictions purify

      • They help me center on the eternal

      • They can authenticate my ministry

        • I'm obviously not in it for the money & fame! :mrgreen:

    • What have I done to prepare the church for my eventual removal?

      • I must prepare Elishas, Joshuas, & Timothys

    • Regular discipleship is critical

      • Dave takes his men with him on ministry visits & trips

    • Paul discipled Timothy

      • Build the ministry on the foundation that God has given

    • I don't want somebody who wants to just teach...I want somebody who loves the sheep

    • Shepherds love the sheep - not use or abuse them

    A Fragile Hope

    My pastor just sat down and showed me this video...this is by some of the kids in his fellowship.



    • David glories in the grace & forgiveness of the Lord - his iniquities were covered

      • His iniquities weren't accounted to his account

      • How much more am I blessed?

        • Not only are my iniquities not accounted - Jesus' righteousness is...!

    • If David, the man after God's own heart, could live a mucu more me?

      • I am capable of living a lie

      • I don't want to live a lie!!!

    • God dealt with Dave - hand of correction - dryness

      • Don't despise the chastening of the Lord

    • Sin translates to spiritual drought

    • David confessed - he didn't make excuses

      • That's what opened the door for experiencing true renewal & refreshing

    • I need to stop making excuses.

    • "You are my hiding place...You always fill my heart with songs of deliverance..."

    • As David is worshipping & expressing himself to God, God speaks to him (vv.8-9)

      • I'm not here to hear more Bible studies...God desires to speak to me

      • I need to be looking & listening

    • I don't want to be vomitted to get where God wants me to be (Jonah)

    • The small things are important to God

      • I want to be led by God's eye - I don't want to wait for the bit & bridle

      • What affects the "small" areas of my life will affect the "large" areas

      • "I don't want you to be wild & unbroken."

    • Abraham got tired of waiting...and then Ishmael came

    After the session

    My lovely and gracious wife was text-messaging me an ongoing play-by-play of the game - I absolutely adore that woman.

    Anyway, the Wings just went up 3-2 with 10 minutes left in regulation when I shut off the phone for Bob Caldwell's session. So you can imagine the cry of anguished fury when the session was over, I turned the phone back on and - the Pens tied it up with 34 seconds left in regulation.


    But while I was in the Overflowing Cup, with NHL.COM loaded up and listening to the game online while on the phone with my wife during the last bit of the second and all of the third overtime periods, I did get to hang with Chad Myhre and Centorian, from The Blog Of Which We Do Not Speak.

    However, I had to run the gauntlet all the way back to Lakeside Lodge, with loving and gracious pastors (especially the dudes from Colorado - you know who you are...) heckling my every, stunned step.

    I did get to chat with Bill Walden on my way back to the lodge, who was marinating in the Roman Spa. He's a good brother.

    It's all good, though. I really think my wife was more disappointed in the outcome of the game than I was.

    Did I mention how much I adore that woman...?

    Right now, two of my roomates are synchronized-snoring. I'm fighting the powerful temptation to walk over to one/both of them and put their hands in warm water or dab some shaving cream on their hands or something equally mature and pastorial.

    ...must...fight urge a...punk...

    Lurking on The Blog Of Which We Do Not Speak, and heading to sleep myself.

    I miss my wife and son.

    Did I mention how much I adore her...?

    Session 2 - Bob Caldwell

    • It's amazing what an environment of faith,
      love, and truth can do.

    • We limit ourselves to ourselves too much.

    • Paul had a heart of great boldness in God,
      but with great conflict.

      • The people who had wanted his help style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>initially, turned on him & lit
        into him

      • "The last time I was sent somewhere
        by God, I got my head kicked in!"

      • ...but is it worth it?

      • is if you're called.

    • Can't look back - keep fighting through style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>for the sake of the people God called
      you to.

    • Conflicts are part of the ball game - they
      don't go away.

    • "If you think about it, most of us
      (pastors) just aren't all that sane."

    • The devil would love you to
      "play church."

    • Satan hates your guts.

    • Conflict is a gift - it's a great purifier
      - it will either crush us, or draw us to the Lord.

    • This isn't heaven - so get up & fight

    • "We have been approved by God to be
      entrusted with the Gospel" - & that's wat drove Paul on.

    • Am I seeking to please God...?

    • If I'm seeking to be approved, I style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>will

      • Everything I want to trust in I want to be

      • What's more powerful, more important than
        the Gospel?

    • Does the Gospel own my heart...?

    • My relationship with this Book (the Bible)
      is a heart thing.

    • I would rather teach a small little sermon
      that had real faith than a fancy one with sophistication that draws men to
      imagined greatness.

    • Don't despise the day of small beginnings.

      • That Bible study for 5 people is just as
        important to God as one for 5000

    • What is it that's holding me back?

      • Does the Lord have my heart, or have I
        let it grow cold...?

    • A local church, to not labor in vain, I
      must have a mother's affection for the people.

      • Does my son ever thank me for changing
        his diapers?

      • ...see how this applies to the ministry?

      • It's not about being appreciated - and I
        probably won't be

    • Pastors have to be "non-quitters"
      - but also gentle.

    • God would fan the flame of someone who was
      about to go out.

    • There are many bruised people - treat them
      with gentleness, not brutality.

      • We can't be too busy not to cherish the
        people & be gentle.

      • Chuck seems to love everybody - style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>even
        the bruised

    • Give not just the Gospel, but my style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>life,

      • When you give your heart to people, yoire
        going to get hurt.

      • Paul wasn't a disconnected professional.
        Many of the people you give your life for won't like you.

        • style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>Do it anyway style='font-size:10.0pt;font-family:Tahoma;mso-fareast-font-family:Tahoma'>.

    • Fathers invest in their kids and don't
      expect anything in return.

    • The Gospel is what it's about - not me.

    Monday, June 02, 2008

    Dinner is (more or less) served

    So, the Michigan pastors have a tradition. When we're at the Murrieta conference, we leave the conference grounds at least once and gluttonize eat at the Brazilian Steakhouse.

    We get there, at the mall a bit down the road outside the conference grounds's gone.

    Not the conference grounds. That would be odd.

    But the Brazilian Steakhouse - apparently, the Partial Rapture Theory is at least partially true.

    After much weeping and gnashing of teeth, we wound up settling for El Torrito's.


    So then I come back and hit The Overflowing Cup to check e-mail, upload some pics, and who do I see trying rather vainly to hide over in yonder corner?

    Corby of Stephens.

    Very cool; got to catch up with another brother I don't get to see but once per year, at this conference.

    So, now I'm going to go get some "Vitamin C" to help me stay awake during the next session - which really shouldn't be all that difficult - Bob Caldwell rocks the proverbial Casba.

    Session 1 - Mike MacIntosh

    I Thes. 1

    • The return of Jesus is mentioned in each of the chapters

    • The Church is in the Lord - not a man, or a denomination.

    • It's so important for us to be praying for each other.

    • We have a lot of power in our prayers

    • George Mueller & his 5 college friends

    • 65 years of praying for his friend

    • Paul's fruit among the Thessalonians came through the teaching of the Word.

    • Acts 17:11

    • Chuck Smith was always ministering - so much for the "you gotta take a break!" guys...d'oh...

    • Whatever we're doing today for the Lord should be a work of faith.

    • Pastoring the church takes faith

    • The day you stop loving the people is the day you walk out.

    • Labor of love - I.e., no strings attached.

    • No fingerprints.

    • We get "it" (it being a labor of love) when the devil knocks you down, & the Lord holds you & picks you back up.

    • Patience of hope - trust Him to work & deliver you.

    • Hope comes through affliction

    • If any man boast, let him boast that he knows & understands Me...

    • God will shake us, test us - do I really love Him, really love the people?

    • I should always give thanks to God for/in the ministry - not complain, not become embittered, not backtalk

    • "Mike, it's just a bump in the road."

    • Do I want to go on with the Lord? Then the afflictions will come.

    • These three things:
      • The Word

      • The Holy Spirit

      • Much assurance
          The last comes only with the first two.

    • I need to be an example even in how I suffer, forgive, & live in & give out grace.