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 same...to 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 BuildingChurchLeaders.com 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 www.sudanskids.blogspot.com