Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Abraham's Faith

Rom 4:20 Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God,

With respect to the promise of God, Abraham did not waver in unbelief. He did not vacillate between faith and doubt as many believers frequently do. When from the human viewpoint things are going well, it is easy to trust God. But when things seem impossible, it is even easier to distrust Him.

It would seem from the Genesis narratives that Paul was mistaken about Abraham's unwavering faith. When "the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision, saying, 'Do not fear, Abram, I am a shield to you; your reward shall be very great,'...Abram said, 'O Lord God, what wilt Thou give me, since I am childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?...Since Thou hast given no offspring to me, one born in my house is my heir'" (Gen 15:1-3). Abraham openly admitted before God that he could not understand how the divine promise of an heir, much less of a multitude of nations, could be fulfilled. The only heir he could see was his chief servant, Eliezer, who would have received Abraham's inheritance had no son been born to him by Sarah.

But struggling faith is not doubt, just as temptation to sin is not itself sin. The very fact that Abraham was trying to understand how God's promise could be fulfilled indicates he was looking for a way of fulfillment, although he could not yet see a way. Weaker faith might have simply succumbed to doubt. Sincere struggling with spiritual problems comes from strong, godly faith. Such faith refuses to doubt and trusts in God's promises, even when no way of fulfillment is humanly imaginable. God's testing of His children's faith is designed to strengthen their trust, and they should thank Him for it, hard as it seems to be at the time (see James 1:2-4).

2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. 4 Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

When Abraham was tested by God, he grew strong in faith.
(from The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (c) Moody Press and John MacArthur, Jr., 1983-2002)

This really touched my heart this morning as it relates to our waiting to see if God will bless us with another child. Sometimes I feel like Abraham, not understanding how it could happen, and I begin to wonder if I am doubting. This study this morning gave me some peace-knowing that trying to understand God's plan for us is not doubt, but simply our faith struggling, exercising our spiritual muscles. And we hope that God is glorified. We want God to have glory no matter when or if he blesses us with another child. He is God, wonderful and awesome, no matter what his plan is for our family. He deserves to be glorified and we are striving to do that daily.

I love it when I study God's words and he reveals things to me that I needed at that time. May anyone who reads this have that same blessing from the Word in your own personal study.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Cool Art

How many horses in this picture? Should find 7

Sunday, August 28, 2005


Faith is never the basis or the reason for justification, but only the channel through which God works His redeeming grace. Faith is simply a convicted heart reaching out to receive God's free and unmerited gift of salvation.

The story is told of a poor farmer who had saved his money for years in order to buy an ox to pull his plow. When he thought he had enough saved, he traveled a great distance to the nearest town to shop for an ox. He soon discovered, however, that the paper money he had been saving had been replaced by a new currency and that the date for exchange from the old to the new had long since passed. Because he was illiterate, the man asked a neighbor school boy to write a letter to the president of their country, explaining his dire situation and asking for an exemption. The president was touched by the letter and wrote back to the farmer: "The law must be followed, because the deadline for exchanging bills has already passed. The government can no longer change your bills for the new ones. Even the president is not exempt from this rule. However," the president continued, "because I believe that you really worked hard to save this money, I am changing your money for new money from my own personal funds so that you will be able to buy your ox."

Before God, every person's good works are as worthless as that farmer's outdated money. But God Himself, in the Person of His Son, has paid the debt. And when a confessed sinner casts himself on God's mercy and accepts in faith the Lord's atoning work in his behalf, he can stand forgiven and divinely righteous before Him.

(from The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (c) Moody Press and John MacArthur, Jr., 1983-2002)

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Friday, August 26, 2005

A few days off

This past Wed-Fri I took off from work. I wanted to take some time off to have a little break before we get busy at work again. We were going to go to Six Flags on Wedesday, but it was just too hot. So we went to the Cowgirl musuem instead. These pictures are from there.

On Thursday I played XBox games all afternoon while M & M went and visited Michele's grandmother. Then on Friday MearBear and I went to see the movie Valiant while Michele took the day to herself, which included shopping for fall clothes.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

God's great truth

God's justice and grace are on a perfect and infinitely grander scale than human wisdom can perceive or comprehend. Because of His justice, no sin will ever go unpunished; yet because of His grace, no sin is beyond forgiveness.

(from The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (c) Moody Press and John MacArthur, Jr., 1983-2002)

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Cool Art

Stare at this picture and see the Senoras and Senors

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

We miss you, Elvis

Today is the 28th anniversary of the day Elvis Presley died. I can still remember how devastated I was when I heard that the King was gone. But his memory lives on in his music, his legend, and the many Elvis impersonators and tribute artists, including yours truly.

So to you, Elvis, we say:

"Thank you, thank you very much!"

Monday, August 15, 2005

Seeking God

I recently started a personal study of Romans. In Rom 3:11 Paul states that no one seeks God. In response to that, is the following quote from John MacArthur's commentary. Oh that I could be like this:

The person who truly seeks for God is like David, who declared, "I have set the Lord continually before me" (Ps 16:8). Such a person seeks first the kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matt 6:33). God becomes the focus of everything, the source of everything, the beginning and end of everything. To truly seek for God is to respect and adore His sovereign majesty and to feed on the truth of His Word. It is to obey His commandments, to speak to Him in prayer, to live consciously in His presence with a desire to please Him. No one can do such things naturally, but only by the Spirit of God working through him. The natural inclination of men is to "seek after their own interests" (Phil 2:21).(from The MacArthur New Testament Commentary, (c) Moody Press and John MacArthur, Jr., 1983-2002)

God, may we all truly seek you fully today and everyday.

Monday, August 08, 2005

Cool Art

Houses or People? You Decide!

Friday, August 05, 2005

Elvis Update

It looks like I've got another fun Elvis gig lined up. In January '06 I will be doing Elvis with a live band for 500+ CPAs and lawyers.

So what do you think might be the best Elvis songs for this group of folks? Feel free to change up the lyrics to fit the audience.

For example, during "Hound Dog" instead of singing "You ain't nothing but a Hound Dog, crying all the time" I could sing a verse that says "You ain't nothing but a lawyer, objecting all the time".

Cool Art

How Many Tall Ships are There?

Third time's the charm

We're going to Longview this weekend to visit my parents.

That may not sound like such a big deal, but given recent history it will be a big deal if we have a complete visit for the weekend. Let me explain.

Our last trip there did not end well. We were there for Memorial Day weekend, but on Sunday of that weekend Mom's blood pressure dropped so low that she passed out. We had to call 911 and she was taken to the hospital where they were able to stabilize her. But she had to spend the night in the hospital, so all Sunday and Monday we really didn't get to see her. Plus the tense situation of seeing emergency personnel working on her was tough on us.

Then two weekends ago we had planned to go see them, but we got a phone call from them on Friday morning. Mom was not feeling well due to some problems with her medications and they advised us that it would be better for us not to come that weekend, so we did not go.

So here's hoping we have a successful visit with my parents this weekend. If you're reading this, please say a prayer for us to that end. Thanks.

Pitbull vs. Porcupine

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Judge ye not?

By now you may have heard about Rafael Palmeiro being suspended for testing positive for steroids. In reading this story, I couldn't help but think about Danny's series on being judgemental. Palmeiro told Congress in March that he had never used steroids. Yesterday he said that he has "never intentionally used steroids." So how do we judge this man? Is he a liar? Or is he telling the truth? If he's telling the truth, then how did the steroids get in his system? Is it right to call him a liar when we don't really know him or really know for sure if he in fact did use steroids? What about that word "intentionally"? Does that change our thoughts of the situation? Can you "accidentally" use steroids?

Very interesting questions-especially in light of not wanting to be judgemental of some one.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Random thoughts

Entertainment can take away from time with God

Contributions are tax deductible but interest on credit cards is not
(It's almost as if God had a hand in the Tax Code)

Spilled paint does not come out of carpet

Every time I ask God for patience, I end up driving behind someone going slow when I'm running late for work

TIVO is the best invention ever(next to air conditioning)