Tuesday, July 28, 2015

types of God in the story of Moses being drawn from the Nile

Brandi was teaching the preschool kids on Sunday morning about Moses being drawn from the Nile, and (this may be heretical, but) I was thinking about several types of God represented in three women.

In this story, Moses could be a type for all of humanity, condemned to death.  Pharaoh's daughter could represent Christ in the sense that she rescued Moses from the curse of death for all (boys) and made Moses an heir of the kingdom.  Moses's sister (presumably Miriam) could represent the Holy Spirit in the sense that she oversaw Moses's rescue by Pharaoh's daughter and guided Moses to nourishment and care by his mother, who in this case, could represent the Heavenly Father.

It feels a little weird to me to see the Holy Trinity in the three ladies in this story, but I think it is an artifact of my culture as opposed to a Biblical basis why God would preclude revaluation of Himself through a particular gender. (Gal. 3:28 may have some relevance).  

Heavenly Father, I believe that you are compassionate and motherly.  You nourish us and protect us.  Lord Jesus, you rescued us from certain death, and you have made us co-heirs with you.  Holy Spirit, you stay with us, watch over us, and guide us to the Father.  Thank you for revealing yourself to us.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Monday, July 27, 2015


I have said before that Jesus was falsely accused so that the religious leaders could kill him.  But I was impressed this morning by the reality that, while Jesus was indeed falsely accused, Jesus was ultimately sentenced to death because He is the Messiah, the Son of God:

NLT Mark 14:55 Inside, the leading priests and the entire high council were trying to find evidence against Jesus, so they could put him to death. But they couldn't find any. 56 Many false witnesses spoke against him, but they contradicted each other. 57 Finally, some men stood up and gave this false testimony: 58 "We heard him say, 'I will destroy this Temple made with human hands, and in three days I will build another, made without human hands.'" 59 But even then they didn't get their stories straight! 60 Then the high priest stood up before the others and asked Jesus, "Well, aren't you going to answer these charges? What do you have to say for yourself?" 61 But Jesus was silent and made no reply. Then the high priest asked him, "Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?" 62 Jesus said, "I am. And you will see the Son of Man seated in the place of power at God's right hand and coming on the clouds of heaven."

NLT Luke 22:66 At daybreak all the elders of the people assembled, including the leading priests and the teachers of religious law. Jesus was led before this high council, 67 and they said, "Tell us, are you the Messiah?" But he replied, "If I tell you, you won't believe me. 68 And if I ask you a question, you won't answer. 69 But from now on the Son of Man will be seated in the place of power at God's right hand." 70 They all shouted, "So, are you claiming to be the Son of God?" And he replied, "You say that I am."

Fundamentally, Jesus died because He is the Messiah, the Son of God.  

Heavenly Father, thank you for giving Jesus as the sacrifice for the sin of the world.  Lord Jesus, thank you for your faithfulness to our Father's will.  Teach me to be faithful.  Holy Spirit, please guide me to a more humble and grateful appreciation for what Jesus did for me.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Working with my Father

We took a long weekend vacation to the Hill Country to relax and splash in the Frio river.  Its been 14 years since we were here last.

On Friday, we were playing in the river, and I started working on building a little dam to divert more flow into a little set of rapids and improve the rapids for a tube ride. Beau jumped in to help me, and we had a great time hauling rocks.  I moved one big rock that probably weighed a couple hundred pounds, and Beau was very impressed.

We were having such a great time that we didnt notice that the rocks had a surface like very fine sandpaper, and unfortunately most of Beau's fingertips were bleeding before we noticed.

I was so impressed with his love for me and his enjoyment of our collaborative work.  It was challenging to me as I considered the spiritual analogy of how Jesus loves His Father and enjoyed working with Him.  Jesus said that He did what He saw His Father doing.  Jesus loves His Father so much that He was even willing to allow His hands to be bloodied to accomplish His Father's work.

I want to join my Father in His work, enjoying fellowship and colaboring with Him.

Heavenly Father, help me see your work.  Jesus, thank you for your example of working with the Father.  Holy Spirit, please show me how to join in the Father's work.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Courageous faith

Yesterday, we were playing in the river, a little bit further down from the cabin.  There is a large boulder with a ledge about eight feet above the water, conveniently adjacent to a deeper pool in the river.  After seeing Jason jump into the water, we asked Beau and Jude if they wanted to try.  I was surprised that both of them were willing.  Jude climbed up, and after only a moment of hesitation, he jumped!  And Beau soon followed!  I was so proud of them!

Later, I told each of them (individually) how proud I was of them for jumping off of the rock.  I want them to to be courageous men, and it fills my heart with joy to see them be courageous.

I was thinking about how our Heavenly Father must enjoy it when we courageously obey the Holy Spirit when He leads us to try things in faith that are new or outside of our convention.  I want to be a courageous son.

Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us the Holy Spirit to guide us in truth and obedience.  Heavenly Father, help me see that you love me, independently of my obedience or disobedience, but help me want to bless you by trusting you and obeying you.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Floating the river

On Saturday, we floated a section of the Frio river.  I was thinking about the analogy of floating down the river of life, and I thought of two seperate analogies. 

During the first hour, I spent so much effort trying to keep Brandi's tube on the right, and the boys' tube on the left, and all of us facing downstream.  I spent so much time managing our configuration that I was missing the peace of just going with the flow and trusting the current to take us downstream.  I think I do this in life.  I spent too much time trying to figure out how to keep everything the way I want it to that I miss the beauty of the scenery around me.

Near the end of the float, the stream was wide, and we were moving very slowly.  A mild headwind came through and started blowing us back upstream.  I had to paddle a little bit, and then I jumped into the river to tow my family downstream.  I was thinking about how, as a husband and a father, I need to be seeking the Lord to know which direction to go, and when the winds of adversity come against us, I need to work to keep us moving in the right direction.

Heavenly Father, I want to be moving with you.  Holy Spirit, I want to be in your flow, and I don't want to be overly concerned about how you are moving me, as long as I am going forward with you.  Help me to trust you.  Please give me wisdom as I lead my family, and please give me discernment to know when I am fighting a headwind.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

living water

Yesterday evening, we walked a few miles to a park that the boys really like.  It rained a few days ago, and there is a low spot that retained some water adjacent to the park.  The water was stagnant and murky, and it stunk like anaerobically digested organic waste.  I commented to Brandi that there was a good spiritual analogy in seeing that stagnant water stinks.  She confirmed and added that stagnant water also grows things that suck your blood (mosquitoes).

John 7:37 On the last day, the climax of the festival, Jesus stood and shouted to the crowds, "Anyone who is thirsty may come to me! 38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, 'Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.'" 39 (When he said "living water," he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given, because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.)

Heavenly Father, I don't want to be stagnant; I want to have your Holy Spirit flowing through me continuously.  Lord Jesus, I believe in you, and I want to come and drink from the fountain.  Holy Spirit, please anoint me and use me to continue the work that Christ began.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015


I think God might be testing me.  You can choose to control your attitude and emotions to remain joyful, in spite of your circumstances.  In the midst of a lot of work pressure and 16 month old who still doesn't sleep through the night, I have a perfect opportunity to demonstrate maturity and to be joyful in spite of difficult circumstances.

I think He wants me to see that I am stronger and more resilient than I think I am.

I am reminded of strain hardening metals.

Ultimately, I am responsible for my own attitude, avoiding bitterness, and choosing to be joyful in spite of inefficient support services at work and chronic sleep deprivation at home.

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. ...  May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Heavenly Father, please help me be mature.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Serving with Him

Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.

It is encouraging to me that Jesus said that we are serving with Him.  And later, He said that He would send the Holy Spirt to empower us.

I want to serve with Christ today, by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Heavenly Father, please help me join you in your work.  Lord Jesus, help me stay with you.  Holy Spirit, please empower me today to serve.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.

Friday, July 3, 2015

sweet fellowship

Brandi and I had a couple over for dinner Monday evening.  They are a sweet couple, both relatively new believers.  It was so encouraging to see them growing in their faith, asking clarifying questions, and really pursuing the Lord.  It is such a blessing to be involved in their lives.

We had them over for dinner several months ago, and they gave us a bottle of wine.  This week, they gave us some special bread.  On Tuesday night, I used the wine and the bread that they gave us to serve communion to our home group.  It made me think about how fellowship with other saints, especially new disciples, helps us remember and appreciate Christ's sacrifice.

Heavenly Father, thank you for encouraging us and challenging us to continue growing in our faith and making disciples.  Thank you for your great love for us, and thank you for ministering to us within the Body of Christ.  Holy Spirit, please help me see the importance of spending time making disciples.  I love you, and I pray in the name of Jesus.