Friday, December 4, 2009

Thoughts on Bearing Burdens

Learning to Bear Burdens

I have been thinking a ton lately about bearing the burdens of others. As a family we have been praying much for the healing of Matt Chandler. We have also been praying for several guys on staff at The Village and their families. Our prayers have simply been the following:

Papa, please make Your thoughts their thoughts. Make Your feelings their feelings. Give them a peace that will surpass all understanding that guards both their heart and mind in You.

As I have prayed this for each of them I have realized how much of a distorted view of carrying a burden I possess. Many times I have looked at it as asking God to take the persons “burden” and pass it to me. The problem is that it would crush me, so I definitely would not be carrying it well.

He has been teaching me the only way to properly carry a burden is to look at Him and ask Him to take it from the person. It does not have to do with the burden being “taken on” in order to relieve the other person because of my ability to carry their burden. After all, this is still practical atheism. God has nothing to do with that thought process.

He asks us to intercede in such a way that the relief people experience is MAINLY from Him, not my prayer. If it is any other way I am focused mainly on my glory and ability in prayer and not looking for Him to be all in all. Let me give a word picture (although analogies breakdown).

A little boy and his friend were playing outside in the woods. Lightening struck a tree and it fell over on the little boys friend. The little boy runs to His daddy, who is the world’s strongest man, and says, “Daddy, My friend is being crushed by a tree in the woods! Please come and help! I KNOW you can lift the tree.” The father quickly runs out and lifts the tree off the friend and brings him to safety. As the boy recovers, they both constantly talk about the father and what he did.

Let’s look at a few things in this analogy.

First of all, in a situation like this the father does not begrudgingly come to help. It is his good pleasure (Mt. 7:7-11). He is fully confident in His own strength. The strength of the Father should give us a source of comfort and confidence. He is not like the father who hates to be interrupted in the middle of a college football game to come and help!

Next, the son knew exactly where to go. He did not take time to try and lift the tree. He knew it was hopeless, yet it did not cause TOTAL hopelessness. His lack of ability caused him to seek out someone greater than himself. This is the call of truly “carrying a burden”. We are to seek out Him who is truly greater than us and ask Him to lift the burden. After all, HE IS INFINTELY STRONG!

Finally, notice how the relief of the injured child and the relief of the son was found in the work of the Father. The strength of the father produced an intense confidence that culminated in His praise. It would have been ludicrous for the son to turn toward his friend and start talking about how great he was because he ran to his father and THAT ACTION is what saved the boy. It is not that the action was not important it just was not the saving source of the boy. The father was.

The size and weight of the tree was not mainly the focus either. The problem was not the focus. Looking at the power of the tree would not have saved the boy. The focus was the father. His strength. His compassion. His love. His power.

As we think about “carrying burdens” for others I pray we will mainly look to Him who is infinitely stronger, more loving, more compassionate, and more powerful than we will ever be. As we pray for others, I pray our focus would be on our Father in Heaven who feels infinitely stronger about every situation than we will ever feel. Pray for all those involved in this situation with Matt. Yet, pray in such a way that the way you carry the burden is by Ps. 37:5.

“Commit your ways to the Lord; trust in Him, and He will act.”

Love Truth


Friday, November 20, 2009

His Voice and The Advent Conspiracy

His Voice For Sudan Advent Conspiracy Video from Amber Burger on Vimeo.

I made this little video up last night to go along with The Advent Conspiracy. If you, your small group, your family or your Church are looking for a avenue to give to children around the world, we would love for you to consider our sweet friends in Sudan.

For more info on what the needs are visit our website's Partner Page or CLICK HERE for a document that has goals you could set for your group.


(scroll down to previous post if you are unaware of The Advent Conspiracy)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Advent Conspiracy

If you have not already heard of The Advent Conspiracy, please take time to watch this video and consider how you can be involved::

Last year we had a couple families give to His Voice for Sudan instead of exchanging gifts! I have heard all kinds of great stories of people giving money to help build water wells, helping send missionaries to remote lands, providing for single parent families in their church and buying animals for families around the world so they can eat. All these things by simply buying less extravagant gifts and giving more relational gifts.

One example may be: Instead of giving a nephew a $40 gift card, buy two tickets to the cheap seats of his favorite sports team and go with him. Spend $15 and give the other budgeted $25 to your favorite non-profit or even better, tell him about a child in need and let him brain storm how the $25 could help them.

Happy Conspiring!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Thoughts from Tim Keller

I am reading Tim Keller's new book called Counterfeit Gods. It is amazing!

Here is a great quote that he gave about reading the Bible:

We usually read the Bible as a series of disconnected stories, each with a "moral" for how we should live our lives. It is not. Rather, it comprises a single story, telling us how the human race got into its present condition, and how God through Jesus Christ has come and will come to put things right. In other words, the Bible doesn't give us a god at the top of a moral ladder saying, "If you try hard to summon up your strength and live right, you can make it up!" Instead, the Bible repeatedly shows us weak people who don't deserve God's grace, don't seek it, and don't appreciate it even after they have received it.

Have you ever read the Word as MAINLY trying to get something out of it for yourself and put the MAIN STORY as secondary? I definitely have. If you have not done this, good deal. Keller's words have been a timely reminder and encouragement.

What do you think about his thoughts?

Love Truth

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Islam in France

The following video was posted on Islam in Europe regarding a couple of streets that are literally shut down for 2 hours during Friday prayers. It is pretty wild to see but really crazy if you remind yourself, as you watch it, "this is PARIS, FRANCE" a self proclaimed secular country.

The blog post also notes that this is not being reported on by the mainstream French press.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Provoking Thought by Richard Foster

Here is a passage from the book Freedom of Simplicity by Richard Foster. He is talking through the generosity of God and how this reality should help us to simplify our lives, instead of complicate it with the sin of "Me First Hoarding".

Here it is:

A dominant note in the Old Testament witness is the generosity of God, who freely gives to his children. Repeatedly in the creation story we have the confession that the earth is good. God lavished abundant provision upon the original pair...

The book of Deuteronomy is peppered throughout with promised blessing, and we do the text a grave injustice if we seek to spiritualize the blessing. It was literal land and flocks with which God said he would bless the people... (See Dt. 7:13 and 16:15) Note that the rejoicing is because of the abundant provision from the hand of God...

We do need to stress the promise of material blessing was a conditioned promise. It was no blank check. There was the stipulation, "If you are willing and obedient you shall eat the good of the land" (Is. 1:19). That is to say, there was the strong emphasis upon the inward nature of simplicity - holy obedience - that conditioned all the promised provision. And a vital aspect of that obedience was compassionate provision for the poor and needy.

And why shouldn't the high note of obedience have among its secondary notes the promise of blessing? After all, it would be a strange kind of God who would always repay obedience by withholding the good of the earth. Such did sometimes happen, as the Psalmist testified, but even so he was puzzled by the prosperity the wicked enjoyed while he suffered (Ps. 73). God at times does withhold material blessing for our greater good, but that is the exception to the rule of gracious provision, which is also for our good. It is like God to want to give us good things.

The connection between obedience and blessing is genuinely significant, and the significance is not primarily in the notion of being rewarded for doing what is right. That has its place, but it is a minor place, almost a childish place. The deeper reality in obedience is the kind of spirit it works into us. It is a spirit that crucifies greed and covetousness. It is a spirit of compassion and outreach. It is a spirit of sensitivity and trust. Once the inner disposition has taken over our personality, material blessings cannot hurt us, for they will be used for right purposes. We will recognize material goods to be not for us alone, but for the good of all.

This leads to another important factor in understanding the Old Testament emphasis upon material blessings. Almost without exception the promised provision was for the community rather than the individual. The stress was upon the good of the nation, the tribe, the clan. The idea that one could cut off a piece of the consumer pie and go off and enjoy it in isolation was unthinkable.

What are your thoughts? Do you agree or disagree? Has Foster taught you anything you didn't already know?

Love Truth

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Check out the following statistics. What are some ideas you have on how to practically engage this issue? Are you willing to be a person who helps to answer this problem? We love you all much!!

There are 143,000,000 orphans around the world.

143,ooo,ooo orphans standing shoulder to shoulder will go around the 10,913 mile perimeter of the USA nearly 4 times.

143,000,000 orphans in a single file line would reach around the earth over 2 times.

You could fill Michigan University Stadium 1,330 times to EQUAL 143,000,000


Take all the people in
NYC {8,214,426}
CHICAGO {2,873,326}
then add all the people form the next 47 largest US cities
HOUSTON {2,144,491}
PHOENIX {1,512,986}
PHILLEY {1,448,396}
SAN ANTONIO {1,296,682}
SAN DIEGO {1,256,951}
DALLAS {1,232,940}
SAN JOSE {929,936}
DETROIT {871,121}
COLUMBUS {733,203}
AUSTIN {709,893}
MEMPHIS {670,902}
FORT WORTH {653,320}
BALTIMORE {631,366}
CHARLOTTE {630,478}
EL PASO {609,415}
BOSTON {590,764}
SEATTLE {582,454}
D.C. {581,530}
MILWAUKEE {573,356}
DENVER {566,974}
LOUISVILLE {554,496}
NASHVILLE {552,120}
O.K. CITY {537,734}
PORTLAND {537,081}
TUCSON {518,956}
ATLANTA {486,411}
LONG BEACH {472,494}
FRESNO {466,714}
SACRAMENTO {453,781}
MESA {447,541}
K.C. {447, 306}
CLEVELAND {444,306}
OMAHA {419,545}
MIAMI {404,048}
OAKLAND {397,067}
TULSA {382,872}
HONOLULU {377,357}
ARLINGTON {367,197}
WICHITA {357,698}

the entire population of IRELAND {4,109,086} as well as NICARAGUA {5,603,000} and NORWAY {4,770,000} and DENMARK {5,457,415}
then COSTA RICA {4,133,884}
and the entire population of GREECE {11,170,957}
and finally add the 62,000,000 people who live in FRANCE.

to EQUAL the 143,000,000 ORPHANS WORLD WIDE

Friday, November 6, 2009

BBC Article on Darfur

This article has a couple of quick facts about the conflict in Darfur. I think you’ll find the death toll staggering. It is good however to see various leaders throughout the continent trying to gain some leverage on this horrible situation.

Thanks for reading,


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Orphan Sunday

Here are some staggering Stats:

There are 143,000,000 orphans around the world.
143,ooo,ooo orphans standing shoulder to shoulder will go around the 10,913 mile perimeter of the USA nearly 4 times.
143,000,000 orphans in a single file line would reach around the earth over 2 times.
500,000 of those orphans are in Southern Sudan alone.

Orphan Sunday from Christian Alliance for Orphans on Vimeo.

This Sunday, November 8th, is Orphan Sunday. As you think of the orphans around the world this week, consider the orphans and widows in Southern Sudan. Living in a war torn country brings insecurities and devastation.

By the Lord's great mercy, a partnership between His Voice and EPC of Sudan was formed. Through this partnership, over 200 orphans and over 30 widows have a home, meals and education! If you are interested in ways to partner with us please check our our Partner Page on the His Voice Website.

Here is a video of the sweet children in Southern Sudan::

His Voice for Sudan from Amber Burger on Vimeo.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Notes from Nicaragua

Okay, I know it's long, but it's worth the read.

I recently had the opportunity to spend a week in Nicaragua with a group of 18 men representing The First Baptist Church of Irving. Our mission was to build housing for two pastors that had been leading congregations in remote villages outside of Puerto Cabezas. The pastor whose house my team was building had been traveling approximately 50 miles, weekly, from her current home in Puerto Cabezas to shepherd her flock on the weekends.

Now don’t gloss over 50 miles. I understand that many Americans commute equal or greater distances to their place of work on a daily basis. You have to consider we’re talking about a 3rd world country 50 miles. Translated: 50 miles = about 5 hours! And you thought your commute was bad.

Our team departed from DFW, had a lay over in Miami, caught a connecting flight to Managua, Nicuragua and then boarded a single prop twelve-seater with a weed-eater engine, which carried us on into Puerto Cabezas.

We spent the night at a mission house/ranch-place. We went over some logistics for the week, divvied up various responsibilities for each team, then the following morning we loaded up in an old yellow school bus and made the 5 hour commute to some remote villages along the Wawa River (which I have now bathed in…don’t drink the water).

The first night both teams, 18 of us total, crammed into the tiny church, where my team would call home for the next week. The church was a wood building, four walls, a tin roof, and a mud floor. We laid out our cots and mosquito nets and bed down for the night. The next morning we got the other team reloaded in the “Ole Yellow Dog” and on their way to their destination for the duration of the week.

As we were rearranging our camp for the week one of the men in our group made an interesting discovery, three feet from my bed. Sitting happily on the wall three feet from my bed was a big fat hairy tarantula…three feet from my bed. So I walked over to the proximity of my bed and sure enough three feet from my bed there was a big fat hairy tarantula, three feet from my bed. Awesome! So needless to say throughout the rest of the week I was very attentive to my surroundings, especially about three feet from my bed.

This brings me to a very important part of my trip. For those of you who haven’t yet had the opportunity to sleep in a place that requires a mosquito net please allow me to offer a smidge of insight. Whilst sleeping under a mosquito net, the last thing you want to do is have to get out of that net in the middle of the night for any reason.

Let me recap for you the events of Thursday night. It is a tail of one man’s struggle against his own mind and body which unknowingly lead him to a great blessing of wisdom and insight from God.

At this point in the week it had been raining almost every night and this night was no different. At times throughout the week the rain on the tin roof was very soothing. On Thursday night however, the rain came down angrily, seemingly taking vengeance on our roof. It was pretty awesome to hear. Despite the raging storm I managed to find sleep, little did I know that when I next awoke a war would be waging.

Consciousness crept over me suddenly, not fully awake but very aware of one thing…I had to pee. What ensued over the next five minutes was a battle between my mind and my bladder. I will now recount for you the internal dialogue that took place in my semi-conscious-state.

Bladder: Wake up dude, I seriously need to purge.

Mind: “Oh, no, no, hold it till morning man.”

To which the rest of my body agreed as it was weary from work. Except Bladder…Bladder answered sharply with a contrasting opinion to my inner dialogue.

Bladder: “You’re an idiot!”

Mind: “Dang it!” “Maybe if I rollover?”

Bladder: “No, NO, you’re making it worse!”

Now at this point I had no idea what time it was when my bladder reached its full capacity. I had no watch, no cell phone, no clock, and one mentally retarded rooster that crowed at dusk, dawn, twilight, midnight, and everywhere in between. So I sat up in my cot, still fortified in my net. I peered out the open window above my cot. I could hear the storm had calmed to a gentle rain on the tin roof and judging by the moonless cloud covered sky I was assured that the sun was still sleeping and had no intentions of rising early so that I might relieve myself.

Bladder and Mind had now formed an alliance and were clearly telling me that I had no choice. I’m not sure what a bladder feels like moments before rupturing but I knew I had to be getting close.

I briefly considered just going. It had been raining for a week and everything I owned was damp. So really if I just went in my cot no one would notice. No, no that’s going to smell once the sun starts beating down on the tin roof.

Left with no alternative I bravely freed one hand from my mosquito net and blindly pawed at the bench at the head of my cot where I had place my head lamp. I was trusting the Lord had not allowed a giant hairy tarantula to bed down on my head lamp; as this would have no doubt caused me to immediately empty my bladder while simultaneously screaming like a little girl.

I blindly found my lamp, spider-less, praise the Lord! I donned my head lamp, not wanting to disturb my sleeping brothers; I groped in the dark under my cot for my sandals. Ah-ha, holding them by the toe I gave them a few firm taps against the ground to shake out any unwanted guests that might have made my foot ware their home.

Okay, sandals on, headlamp on. I bit the bullet and fully emerged from my impenetrable fortress of fine netting. Now standing I was completely awake and very aware of the full weight of my bladder. I shuffled painfully, blindly, towards the front door in a pair of Keen’s, a headlamp, and my REI seven day underwear; thankfully it was a moonless night.

As I made it to the door I turned on my light so I could inspect the door for big fat hairy tarantulas before I reached for the handle, all clear. I stepped outside into the mud and made my way to a barbed wire fence about 15 feet from the building. It was still raining lightly and the grass was wet and cold on around my ankles. Once I had my bearings I switched off my light as it was a beacon to all flying insects in the Nicaraguan jungle.

At last, at last sweet relief! As I stood there in the dark relieving myself I could think of no greater feeling in the world. As shivers went up my spine I was suddenly blinded by a flash of light. I looked up into the sky now brightly lit. From one end to the other as far as I could see from left to right the entire sky lit up.

As I stood there mid-stream I felt very small against the sky. I’m sure this all took place in a matter of seconds but it seemed like the lightning flash lasted for minutes; followed quickly by a slow deep rolling thunder in the distance. It was as if the power of God had come crashing over me.

Within an instant of lightning flashing out of the darkness I saw the silhouette of the mountains in the distance and the cloud line just above them. It was as if I saw Earth and sky collide before me and my vulnerability in that moment knew no bounds. In that moment when the sky seemed limitless and the Earth illuminated around me I felt the absolute ginormousness of God, and when the thunder rolled in the distance I felt His power, and in the midst of it all I felt very, very…small.

Instantaneously, like the tide crashing into a rocky shore I felt a word of God come over me. “Yes, you are small; but you are not insignificant. What you do matters.”

Wow! I was amazed, and inspired and felt so empowered. The crazy thing is that this entire revelation took place in less than 30 seconds. As a matter of fact I was still peeing after it was all over and I realized I was standing in soggy horse poop…awesome.

As I walked back to my cot I thought less about big fat hairy tarantulas resting three feet from my bed and more of how often we miss opportunities to be significant because we think so little of ourselves.

My prayer for each of you is that you would realize the full potential of who you are in Christ. And the moral of this story is; when nature calls in the middle of the night, always answer. You’ll never know what message you might receive if you don’t.

If you would like to see pictures from the trip, you can visit the Nicaragua picture site by clicking

Thanks for reading,


Orphan Sunday

Orphan Sunday from Christian Alliance for Orphans on Vimeo.

This Sunday, November 8th, is Orphan Sunday. As you think of the orphans around the world this week, consider the orphans and widows in Southern Sudan. Living in a war torn country brings insecurities and devastation.

By the Lord's great mercy, a partnership between His Voice and EPC of Sudan was formed. Through this partnership, over 200 orphans and over 30 widows have a home, meals and education! If you are interested in ways to partner with us please check our our Partner Page on the His Voice Website.

Here is a video of the sweet children in Southern Sudan::

His Voice for Sudan from Amber Burger on Vimeo.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Project 365

The guys over at We Were Naked//Modern Philanthropy have a new shirt out that supports the His Voice orphans! For every Project 365 shirt sold, one day of orphanage cost per child will be covered. This is a great idea for Christmas. Get a shirt for a family member as a gift and support an orphan at the same time! Here's the new shirt: Enjoy!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Scripture Memorization

Justin Taylor posted the video below on his blog. It was, for me, an awesome and stern rebuke to memorize scripture as the power and comprehensibility of it are undeniable as you watch and listen.

I hope you enjoy and are stirred up to love and good works by the truth and beauty of The Word.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A Very Important Principle

Here is an article John Piper wrote. What do you think about this approach?

Love Truth

One of the Most Important Principles in Reading the Bible

October 27, 2009 | By: John Piper | Category: Commentary

Sometimes readers of the Bible see the conditions that God lays down for his blessing and they conclude from these conditions that our action is first and decisive, then God responds to bless us.

That is not right.

There are indeed real conditions that God often commands. We must meet them for the promised blessing to come. But that does not mean that we are left to ourselves to meet the conditions or that our action is first and decisive.

Here is one example to show what I mean.

In Jeremiah 29:13 God says to the exiles in Babylon, “You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.” So there is a condition: When you seek me with all your heart, then you will find me. So we must seek the Lord. That is the condition of finding him.


But does that mean that we are left to ourselves to seek the Lord? Does it mean that our action of seeking him is first and decisive? Does it mean that God only acts after our seeking?


Listen to what God says in Jeremiah 24:7 to those same exiles in Babylon: “I will give them a heart to know that I am the Lord, and they shall be my people and I will be their God, for they shall return to me with their whole heart.”

So the people will meet the condition of returning to God with their whole heart. God will respond by being their God in the fullest blessing. But the reason they returned with their whole heart is that God gave them a heart to know him. His action was first and decisive.

So now connect that with Jeremiah 29:13. The condition there was that they seek the Lord with their whole heart. Then God will be found by them. But now we see that the promise in Jeremiah 24:7 is that God himself will give them such a heart so that they will return to him with their whole heart.

This is one of the most basic things people need to see about the Bible. It is full of conditions we must meet for God’s blessings. But God does not leave us to meet them on our own. The first and decisive work before and in our willing is God’s prior grace. Without this insight, hundreds of conditional statements in the Bible will lead us astray.

Let this be the key to all Biblical conditions and commands: “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:12-13). Yes, we work. But our work is not first or decisive. God’s is. “I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me” (1 Corinthians 15:10).

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Great Words From Jared Wilson...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009, 8:46 AM
Jared C. Wilson

One fear we must put aside in our quest for greater gospel-centrality is that it will not preach week to week. The enemy and our own flesh will test our commitment with the “plausible argument” (Col. 2:4) that the gospel will just sound so one-note. We are tempted to think the repetition will have the unintended effect of boring people or making the gospel appear routine and commonplace.

But the gospel is resilient. It is miraculously versatile. It proves itself every day for those awake to it. Because it is the antidote for all sin of all people, power effectual for every type of person no matter their background or circumstance, it is God’s might to save every millisecond and therefore every Sunday.

The gospel is indeed one song. But it is a song with many notes. The news is the same, but some of the words may change and the angles shift. (Use a thesaurus if you have to.) If we are awake to the gospel and seek the wakefulness of others, Christian and non-Christian, the playing of the greatest song at every instance is a lot like the exuberance of childlike wonder in monotonous fun. In Orthodoxy, the great G.K. Chesterton writes:

“Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, ‘Do it again’; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, ‘do it again’ to the sun; and every evening, ‘Do it again’ to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.”

When we “get” the gospel for what it really is — the power to save, the most thrilling news there could be, the declaration that God’s Son died for us and then came back to life! to be the risen Lord and supreme King of the universe, not just the entry fee for heaven but the currency for all of life — we revel in the new creation it unleashes in its wake at every turn. We never get tired of hearing it. It’s the new song that never gets old. “Play it again, play it again!” we will cry.

Gospel wakened people have been given the strength enough to exult in the beautiful monotony of the gospel.
The further good news is that those who are dulled in their senses will not be further dulled by the gospel. In fact, only the gospel can deliver them from their dulled state. No amount of fog and lasers will do it.

What are your thoughts?

Love Truth


Monday, October 19, 2009

My Thoughts on Knowing God Through His Word

Believers, let me ask you this:

If we do not know the Word of God, how will we know the character of God?
If we do not know the character of God, how can we know who God is?
If we do not know who God is, how can we know who we are in Him?
If we do not know the Word of God, the character of God, who God is, or who we are in Him, then how will we ever know the will of God for our lives?

If…“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” (John 1:1) Then, the beginning to knowing God is putting the Word of God first in your relationship with God.

Before we get any further let me preface by saying that I am in no way discounting the power of prayer…I’d be a fool. Rather, I am seeking to greater emphasize the power of the Word, and how the power of the Word magnifies the power of prayer. What caveman brain trying say is:

“Words in Bible make prayer stronger…uhg”

Too often we forget that “The Word (our Bible) became flesh and made His dwelling among us…” (John 1:14)

So many times we seek to know God only through prayer, or mainly through prayer, which means many times we are doing all the talking (since it is very rare that prayer is seen as a two way conversation). Please name for me any other relationship you’ve had where you intimately knew a person by continuously engaging in one-sided conversations with them. If you named more than exactly 0 persons you are delusional.

When we do not seek to know Christ first through the word I believe we are putting our proverbial cart before the horse. Now that is not to say that one must fully know and comprehend the entire Word of God in order to begin a relationship with Him, but if we truly want to know the Word, know Christ, know God’s character, know God, and know God’s will for our lives, then we should strive for nothing less.

Thomas, in John 14:5, says “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answers him in verse 6 with a passage many of you will find very familiar. “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Constantly we are seeking the will of God. I challenge that if we first know the Word of God we will in shorter time know the will of God.

We so often ask God to bless our endeavors, whether in business, school, family, health, travel, missions, and so on. Too often for many believers we have no power in our prayer because they lack substance. Even though we pray to an all-powerful God, if what we are praying for doesn’t match the Word of God or the character of God, it is not going to match GOD! Therefore, it will never, ever, ever, match the will of God.

Thanks for reading,


Monday, October 12, 2009


Daniel Davis is a photographer here in Dallas and a member of The Village Church. He was on the last team that The Village sent to Sudan and he got some amazing photographs of the people whom we love and minister to in Sudan. If you want a visual of the sweet people in Southern Sudan, take a look at these photographs! Thanks Daniel for bringing their sweet faces back to us here in the states!

HERE is the direct link to the Sudan gallery

It is it doesn't work, or you just want to look around his sight, Click HERE then go to click on See the Way. There you click on Galleries and you will find Sudan.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Thoughts from Henry Scougal on Love

Henry Scougal wrote an amazing letter to a friend that was turned into a book. The title is The Life of God in the Soul of Man. Here is a quote he gave on love. Scougal died at the age of 27.

"Love must needs be miserable, and full of trouble and disquietude, when there is not worth and excellency enough in the object to answer the vastness of its capacity...nothing below an infinite good can afford room to stretch itself, and exert its vigour and activity. What is a little skin-deep beauty, or some small degrees of goodness, to match or satisfy a passion which was made for God; designed to embrace an infinite God?"

I have been thinking much about the "active love of God". Many times I make the mistake of viewing His love almost as this "impersonal force" that is pursuing me instead of seeing the relational reality that His intimate love is designed to mainly lead me to Himself, which will naturally overflow in the love for others.

In fact, this will allow me to love others the way that He does instead of loving others in order that they return love back to me. I believe this is the focus He gives us when He tells us to even love our enemies. The point is not that we just "grit our teeth" and do it because He said, but it is because this is the same love He had for us when we were enemies of Him (see Romans 5:10).

What are some thoughts that you have on the "active love of God"?

Love Truth

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Italy considers banning burqa

Considering banning the burqa in Western Europe is like going green in the states....everybody is doing it. Italy just recently joined the group.

I find this topic interesting because of all the factors involved (religious, political, etc...) and the heated debate that it sparks. I also wonder what will happen if all of these countries actually follow through on their considerations and impose the ban. What affect would it have on the spread of Islam and it's influence on the culture and government of Western Europe?

I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject. That is actually why I made this post. This isn't the most natural topic to bring up in conversation but since you all are already here reading tell me what you think. If you don't know much about the topic do some research and get back to me.


Friday, October 2, 2009

Great Thoughts by C.J. Mahaney on Adoption

Not long ago we looked at God’s initiative in our adoption. The more aware we are of God’s initiative the more amazed we are of grace. Our position and status as adopted sons and daughters was secured by God’s initiative in sending his Son.

Today I will focus on the work of the Holy Spirit in our experience of adoption. “God’s purpose was not only to secure our sonship by His Son,” John Stott writes, “but to assure us of it by His Spirit. He sent His Son that we might have the status of sonship, and He sent His Spirit that we might have the experience of it.”*

In other words, God first sent his Son to die for our sins and then God sent his Spirit into our hearts. The immediate cry of the Spirit within our hearts is “Abba! Father!” (Galatians 4:6; Romans 8:15).

The Spirit’s Call

This cry—“Abba! Father!”—is the precious privilege and common experience of all Christians. This cry is evidence that we have received adopting grace. This cry assures us of God’s love. It is a means of certainty that God loves you!

I never tire of reading the following illustration from the ministry of Charles Spurgeon:
I once knew a good woman who was the subject of many doubts, and when I got to the bottom of her doubt, it was this: she knew she loved Christ, but she was afraid he did not love her. “Oh!” I said, “that is a doubt that will never trouble me; never, by any possibility, because I am sure of this, that the heart is so corrupt, naturally, that love to God never did get there without God’s putting it there.” You may rest quite certain, that if you love God, it is a fruit, and not a root. It is the fruit of God’s love to you, and did not get there by the force of any goodness in you. You may conclude, with absolute certainty, that God loves you if you love God.**
Let me ask: Are you aware that God loves you, if you love God? You can be. You can be assured of God’s love for you. That cry did not originate with you. That cry is a gift from God. That cry is an evidence of adopting grace. That cry is a means of assuring you of God’s love for you.

Yet it’s possible to grow less aware of this cry. It is possible to hear only the voice of slavery and fear and grow insensitive to the cry of the Spirit.

This was happening to Christians in Galatia. In Galatians 4, Paul writes people who have been seduced by legalism and no longer enjoy adopting grace and have grown deaf to the cry of the Spirit within.

Many voices cry out for our attention each day and seek to distract our attention from the voice of the Spirit. The cry of indwelling sin is one voice. So is the cry of legalism. And the voice of condemnation can be consistently noisy, too. These are loud and distracting voices.

Which voice are you most aware of?

If you are distracted by these voices and the noise in your soul created by sin and legalism and condemnation, this cry will be muffled.

If this is you, I would recommend a pair of divine noise-cancelling earphones. What I mean is that I would encourage you to memorize Galatians 4:1–7. What is revealed in these verses about adopting grace and the Spirit's work within revealing and applying adopting grace will protect you from the voices of sin, legalism, and condemnation. And it will help you to better hear the Spirit’s cry—“Abba! Father!”—for yourself.

* John R. W. Stott, The Message of Galatians (IVP, 1968).
** Charles Spurgeon, sermon: “The Relationship of Marriage” (sermon No. 762).
Posted by C.J. Mahaney

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Thoughts on One Foot Raised

I read this passage via the notes Abraham Piper took of the talk Sam Storms gave on John Calvin.
The idea of living in a disposition of having "one foot raised" is so powerful. Please take time in every day to meditate on eternal realities. Heaven/The New Earth and Hell help to clarify so much in life. Here is the passage:

On August 5, 1563 Calvin wrote a letter to the wife of one of the Reformation leaders in France. She was experiencing physical illness and he wrote to her, "They [our physical afflictions] should serve us as medicine to purge us from worldly affections and remove what is superfluous in us. And since they are to us the messengers of death, we ought to learn to have one foot raised to take our departure when it shall please God."


Love Truth

Friday, September 25, 2009

Muslim NGO delivers aid to Quake Victims

I read the following article this morning from one of my favorite blogs, Islam in Europe. It was a great reminder of the following: in all that we do, whether it be building orphanages in Sudan, giving to the poor and needy in our own cities, or comforting a friend during a tragedy our end goal must always be the glorify God by sharing Jesus and His gospel in order to establish His Kingdom here on earth. That is not to say that what this group has done should be frowned upon. It just falls short of what is ultimately necessary. We have so much more to give than food, shelter and clothing. We have been given the task of reconciliation and the tools to carry out that task. We have been given living water that quenches thirst eternally and hope that does not fail. We have failed to love our neighbor if we fail to give them the most important thing that we have to offer, Jesus. I hope that you find this as challenging and convicting as I did.

1 Cor. 10:31


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Here is a book you can get for free about the Islamic Prophets

Free book of stories of the Islamic Prophets

Free book of stories of the Islamic Prophets: "Hey guys, here 228 pages: a free book that can be downloaded, on the lives of the Islamic prophets. This helps you understand how Islam views its prophets, and how it views history in general. PBUY. DOWNLOAD HERE.
More info on this book HERE. "

Some Thoughts by Simon Fox on Compassion

Here is an interesting article. Let me know what you think.

FYI, approximately 85% of people who are in senior citizen communities do not EVER get one person who visits them for their entire stay (this includes family members)!

Love Truth

September 23, 2009

The Practice of Compassion

What it means and how to live it.


Simon Fox is executive director of Adventures in Caring, an organization that mobilizes volunteers to visit the sick and lonely in hospitals and nursing homes. He spoke with about the practice of compassion.

What is compassion, and how can it be taught?

Let's start with what compassion is not. It's not just a feeling, a sentimental, touchy-feely thing. At its heart, compassion is the art and practice of being with someone who is suffering. It comes from the Latin root compati. Com means "with, together" and pati means "to feel intensely, to suffer."

There are three aspects of compassion: giving to, doing for, and being with. The first two can be done at a distance. Giving to (those who are poor) can be a check in the mail, and doing for (those who are unable to help themselves) can happen at an emotional distance, such as bandaging a wound without any feeling. But being with requires all of you showing up in body, mind, heart and soul.

Compassion cannot be taught by lecture or sermon alone. Clear examples must be presented, not just theory or philosophy. It is a process of self-discovery. And it is an art, so it must be practiced.

Is compassion always appropriate? Are there situations when you should not be compassionate?

Well, compassion is not being a doormat or never saying no. And for people who are not suffering, tough love is appropriate. But compassion is the balance to severity. It is being with people authentically. Authentic compassion teaches people to be grateful, accountable, and resourceful.

Compassion also means giving the right assistance in the right amount in the right way at the right time. Like medicine, it needs to be given in a therapeutic dosage. This is the art of it, the attention to detail that puts the care into the giving.

What benefits does compassion bring into the church? How does it benefit the congregation?

Compassion is nourishment for relationships. It holds families and communities together. Relationships grow stronger through compassion. This ability to be there for others, when it counts, speaks louder than any words. When people are truly there for one another in their darkest hour, the bonds of trust and love go deep. The sense that someone will love you despite your imperfections and failings builds lifelong friendships and true communities of faith. People want to be part of a congregation because of the quality of the relationships in it.

The practice of compassion also develops our ability to accept our own imperfections. When you fail and want to beat up on yourself, you can look at yourself with God's loving kindness instead.

Where can people serve? Where are the best places to practice compassion?

If you want to see the power of God's love at work, practice compassion where people don't get any. Look to where people get the least attention, acknowledgment, affection, or acceptance, or where they are forgotten, abandoned, ignored, disrespected, humiliated, isolated, never touched, or harshly judged.

The most obvious places are nursing homes and orphanages. Then there are the homeless, or boys without fathers who join gangs looking for some sense of connection. And then the sick in hospitals and the dying in hospices.

Also, choose places where you can have an in-depth conversation. And remember, the most important thing in anyone's life will be related to his or her faith, family, or work.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Thoughts of Mortimer Adler on Teachability

Teachability is often confused with subservience. A person is wrongly thought to be teachable if he is passive and pliable. On the contrary, teachability is an extremely active virtue. No one is really teachable who does not freely exercise his power of independent judgment. He can be trained, perhaps, but not taught. The most teachable reader is, therefore, the most critical. He is the reader who finally responds to a book by the greatest effort to make up his own mind on the matters the author has discussed.

We say "finally" because teachability requires that a teacher be fully heard and, more than that, understood before he is judged. We should add also that sheer amount of effort is not an adequate criterion of teachability. The reader must know how to judge a book, just as he must know how to arrive at an understanding of its contents.

(How to Read a Book by Mortimer Adler, pg. 140)

What do you think about this passage?

Love Truth

Waking up early

I have always been somewhat of an early riser but never on a consistent basis. I manage to string together a week or two of early mornings but eventually I will reset my alarm and pretty much loose an entire morning. As my life has become busier and busier (with mostly good things like a hot wife) it has become more imperative for me to try and get the most out of each day. I also know that my most productive hours are early morning to mid-afternoon, which means if I am going to consistently spend quality time with the Lord it is going to have to take place early in the morning. So a couple of weeks ago when Tim Ferriss tweeted a link to a blog about How to Become an Early Riser I was intrigued.

If consistently getting up early to increase productivity is something you are interested in I think that the blog post is worth a read. It is a fairly simple concept created by combining two schools of thought on sleep patterns. If early mornings are not for you then have fun being one of those "weird late night people".

If you end up trying it out let me know how it works for you.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Thoughts from J.C. Ryle on Prayer and Faith

Rik, a friend of mine, sent me an article by J.C. Ryle and I thought Ryle's thoughts were quite profound. Here they are:

I know that much may go on in a person's mind before they are brought to pray. They may have many convictions, desires, wishes, feelings, intentions, resolutions, hopes, and fears. But all these things are very uncertain evidences. They are to be found in ungodly people, and often come to nothing. In many a case they are not more lasting than the morning cloud, and dew that passes away. A real hearty prayer, moving from a broken and contrite spirit, is worth all these things put together.

Faith is to the soul what life is to the body. Prayer is to faith what breath is to the body. How a person can live and not breathe is past my comprehension, and how a person can believe and not pray is past my comprehension too.

Let me know what you think.

Love Truth

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Great Article On The Need For Christians to Read Widely

I read about this article on Justin Taylor's blog. He has an incredible amount of resources and great articles that he links.

The following article has to do with an area that I am greatly interested and believe that a renaissance in Christian thinking needs to take place. We must be people who not only read, but read widely. Here is the article. Click here.

Let me know your thoughts.

Love Truth

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Three Reasons For A New Blog

1.) Everyone who is on staff with His Voice will be contributing. Therefore, you will be able to get a very diverse look at all the things the Lord is teaching us, articles we think you should read, books you may enjoy, etc.

2.) One desire that I have for His Voice is that it is not mainly seen through a “Sudan centric” lens. Although I definitely want all of you to know more about the Sudanese, I believe it is important to see a full orbed view of what is happening in our lives on an everyday basis. Even more importantly, I pray you will be able to see the love of Jesus in our everyday lives.

3.) We want to learn from you. We hope the comment section will be lively and very interactive. We greatly desire to always be learning and growing, so this is going to be dependent on your interaction also :)

Welcome To Our New Blog!

Hey Everyone! Thanks for stopping by our new blog! As you can see it is still under construction so in the mean time, find us at