Christian Men? Isn’t that an oxymoron?

March 13, 2013 under Unlikely Christian
Share

Duck Dynasty

 

I never wanted to be associated with Christian men.

*

Yeah, I’m a Christian man, but don’t throw me in that category because I’m certainly not like them!

*

Christian men are all soft and proper.  They say things like, “Gee whiz” when they get disappointed.  They part their hair on the side and never have beard stubble.  They have wonderful manners and read books on how to improve them even further.  They don’t think farts are funny.  They like romantic comedies.  They smile too much.  They drive 4 door sedans.  They like to wave at people.  They take their families to “Disney on Ice” shows and enjoy it.  They wear topsider shoes and short with pleats.  The only sport they’ll play is tennis.  They enjoy flossing.  They don’t drink beer.  They only watch movies starring Kirk Cameron.  They prefer salads to burgers.  They apologize even if it wasn’t their fault.  They always tuck in their shirts.  They like to look at paint swatches with their wives, and understand colors like mauve.  They never call in sick.  They think its fine to name a dog, “Princess.”  They don’t use real butter.  They bathe daily, even on the weekends.  The only non-Christian music they’ll listen to is U2.  They never get grime under their finger nails. They don’t hunt, fish or ride motorcycles.  They enjoy shopping for sport jackets with those patch-looking-things on the elbows.  They know October 16th is Boss’s Day and plan for it accordingly with a trip to Hallmark.  They clip their nails with nail clippers and have no qualms about using a nail file, even in front of other people.  They aren’t competitive and believe things like, “It’s not whether you win or lose, its how you play the game that matters.” 

*

Yep, that’s what Christian men are like, so don’t you go lumping me in with them because other than a love for Jesus and a fondness of U2 tunes, we have nothing else in common.  NOTHING!

*

Ridiculous right?

*

Well, believe it or not, that pretty much summed up my preconceived notions about Christian men before I became a Christian.  Wait, let me rephrase that.  That pretty much summed up my preconceived notion about Christian men, even after I became a Christian.  It wasn’t until I let down my guard enough to be around them, that I actually realized I was way wrong. 

*

The fact is, Christian men still have their man cards.

*

That’s one of the MANY reasons I love the show Duck Dynasty!  If you haven’t heard about Duck Dynasty yet, congratulations on coming out of your coma this morning. 

*

It’s a great example of Christian men, being just that – Men, Guys, Dudes.  I could never relate to the Christian men of my preconceived notions, but these Duck Dynasty guys, I can totally relate to.  In fact I almost feel a kinship with these Louisiana boys.  Anytime the Robertson Clan wants to invite me down for some frog legs or fried squirrel nuggets, I’m there.  Really, I just mapped it and I could easily be there by dinner time.  I’m like 5 hours due west, all I gotta do is hop on I-20 and…..okay, starting to sound like a creeper here.

*

Seriously, I do love the show, but what makes me even more “Happy, Happy, Happy”, is that this show has to be shattering preconceived notions, like the ones mentioned above, for men all over the place.

 

What’s this?  Guys who like to hunt, fish, horse around and just be guys? 

*

And they’re Christian?              

*

But I thought…..?

*

Yeah…..I used to think so too, but “Hey,” I was wrong, “Jack”.

*

Hey Robertsons, keep on keeping on!  The world is watching!  Seriously, like every dvr in the world is set up to tape your show.  And I’m thankful for that! 

*

 

Share
comments: Comments Off on Christian Men? Isn’t that an oxymoron? tags: , , , , ,

Remember who God is.

March 4, 2013 under Unlikely Christian
Share

Remember who God is

 

Once upon a time, my church made me mad.  It was one of those moments that really had me questioning if I can do church.  I drove home with steam coming out of my ears that day, not knowing if I was going to go back. 

*

But…..I did.

*

It wasn’t easy for me to get over, but what eventually helped me is, I know these people.  I know their hearts and what they’re all about – reaching the lost.  So looking thru the lenses of truth, if you will, I was able to see past what I didn’t like.

*

It was a great lesson for me.

*

That was awhile back.

*

Then today I realized that the same can be said about God (insert Captain Obvious joke right here.)  What can I say other than sometimes I’m a little late to the party.

*

Seriously, there have been a couple of, okay MANY, times when I haven’t exactly been happy about my circumstances or things I was going through in life.

 *

Now I didn’t blame God for my circumstances…..but I did wonder and question why I was going through it.  Why wasn’t God helping me, moving me, rescuing me or at least helping me to understand.

*

So I would get frustrated.

*

At God?

*

Yeah, sometimes.

*

Take lately for instance.  I’ve been spending so much time in the state of frustration that I’m wondering if I’m even still considered a Texan.

*

I’m worn out, stressed out, got a ton on my mind and need some questions answered! 

*

Umm…..God, you’re seeing this right?!?!  Have my prayers been getting through?  Any time you’d like to step in…..

*

And then today I got smacked upside the head with some truth.  I was reminded that if I could so quickly forgive the church for ticking me off, based on knowing their hearts, how much easier it should be for me to remember who God is during the crappy times, storms of life etc…..

*

How could I have missed that?!?!

*

I may not be happy all the time.  I may visit the state of frustration more times a day than I’d like to but I just need to remember who God is.  And because I know who He is, trust in Him, put my hope in Him, and believe in His words.

*

Like:

*

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”Romans 8:28 NLT

*

and

*

…..but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”Isaiah 40:31 NLT

*

and

*

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.  Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”Philippians 4:6-7 NLT

*

And of course the one that I struggle with the most, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.  Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.” Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT

*

As long as I can do that, I know I’m gonna be alright.

*

Frustrated?  Stressed?

*

Calm down, take a breath, and remember who God is.

*

The peace He offers truly exceeds anything we can understand.

*

Share
comments: 1 »

Live Second – Where my workers at?

January 18, 2013 under Unlikely Christian
Share

So, a couple months back, I AM SECOND asked me to guest blog in their “60-Days-of-Second” campaign to promote their new book, “Live Second: 365 Ways to Make Jesus First.”  I was assigned ‘Week 10’ from the book and asked to write 4 posts, which would be featured on their official blog in December.

*

Here’s is number 4.

*

“The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.  Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”Luke 10:2

*

Eww…..I don’t like that verse.

*

“Wait…..did he just say he didn’t like a verse in the Bible?!?”

*

“I did indeed.”

*

“Wait…..did he just say indeed?  Nobody talks like that, let’s get him!!!”

*

“Hold up, let’s take a good look at this scripture and what it means.  “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.”  What is the harvest?  The harvest is the lost, the people out there that don’t know Jesus. Who are the workers?  Christians are the workers.  So take the harvest analogy out of this verse and it’s, “The number of people who don’t know Christ is large, but the number of Christians willing to reach out to them is little.” 

*

“Eww…..Right?”

*

“Eww, indeed.”

*

So what’s up with that? 

*

“The problem is not in the harvest; the harvest is ready.  It’s the workers; it’s us.  We need to get to work.”Live Second – Week 10, Day 7

*

 “We need to get to work.”

*

Well alright then, time to get out there and share my faith with……Whoa, hold on there big guy.  You sure you want to do that?  I mean, you do that and you’re out there.  That’s some toothpaste that can’t be put back in the tube, if you know what I mean.  You start sharing your faith and there’s a pretty good chance they’re going to think you’re one of them ‘crazy’ Jesus fanatics.  And once you’re labeled that…..I mean, say goodbye to hearing the “good” jokes, the party invites etc….

*

Hmm……..

*

Which of the following is most important to you?

A.  A “good” joke

B.  A party invite

C.  A saved life

D.  What others think about me

E.  Comfort

*

“Well that’s easy, I’m a Christian so I’m going to go with C – A saved life.”

*

“Is that your final answer?”

*

“Yes, that’s my final answer.”

*

“Okay……..The question was “Which of the following is more important to you?”  You answered C – A saved life……………Ohhhhhh, I’m sorry, the correct answer is D – What others think about me.  We would’ve also accepted E – Comfort.”

*

“Wait…….What?!?!?!  How can that be?!?”

*

“Okay…….Well thanks for being a contestant on “Based on my Actions!”

*

Eww…..I don’t like that game show. 

*

But isn’t there some solid truth there?  We know the right answers, but our actions tend to fall short in this area, so much so, that a scripture written back when there were only a handful of Christians as compared to today is just as relevant as ever.

*

So workers, why are you few?  Why aren’t you out in the fields getting your harvest on?  What is it that’s been keeping you from sharing your life-giving faith to the lost?     

*

Comfort.

*

What others think about you.

*

Your qualifications.

*

Somebody else will take care of it.

*

Sharing just isn’t my spiritual gift.

*

Fear of rejection.

*

I’m waiting for them to come to me.

*

Not sure what to say.

*

I’m an introvert.

*

Whatever your excuse is, and I’ve used all of the above, it doesn’t excuse us from the work that needs to be done, the work that Jesus has called us to do.

*

Christians, WE are it.  WE are the workers.  WE are Christ’s ambassadors; God makes his appeals through USWE are speaking for Christ, Himself when WE plead, “Come back to God!” – 2 Corinthians 5:20.  If WE don’t do it, it won’t get done.

*

The number of people who don’t know Christ is plentiful, the number of people willing to reach out and share their faith with them is few. 

*

WE need to change that.

*

WE need to get to work.

*

So…..“Where my workers at?”

*

2 Timothy 2:15 NLT“Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval.  Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.”

*

Hashtags:  #StakesAreHigh #WorkHard #LiveSecond

*

Share
comments: Comments Off on Live Second – Where my workers at? tags: , , , , , ,

Live Second – Huddle Up

January 17, 2013 under Unlikely Christian
Share

 

So, a couple months back, I AM SECOND asked me to guest blog in their “60-Days-of-Second” campaign to promote their new book, “Live Second: 365 Ways to Make Jesus First.”  I was assigned ‘Week 10’ from the book and asked to write 4 posts, which would be featured on their official blog in December.

*

Ladies and gentlemen, post #3.

*

Live Second – Huddle Up!

*

“What relational circles do you see in your life?”Live Second – Week 10, Day 6

*

I love talking about Jesus.

*

I love talking about how He pursued me.

*

I love talking about how He’s changed my life by giving me a new one.

*

I love talking about how He’s still shaping me today.

*

Yeah, I love talking about Jesus…..among my circle of Christian friends.

*

But the people who really need to hear the message?  Well…..to be honest, I’m not really hanging out with them much these days.

*

What can I say?  I love hanging out with my Christian friends.  They speak truth into me, look out for me, encourage me, and help keep me on track.  I always walk away from our get-togethers with some extra pep in my step, that’s right, pep in my step.  Plus hanging out with your Christian friends is Biblical – “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.”Proverbs 27:17 NLT

*

So what about the people who really need to hear the message?

*

Look, I’m a busy guy.  I have a job that keeps me busy, and a family that needs me to be there for them, so when I do have some friend time, I tend to want to spend it with my Christian friends.  Plus, did I mention, it’s Biblical?

*

As Christians it can be real easy to stay in our ‘Holy Huddles’ – hanging out with only other likeminded Christians.  I mean, after all, it’s comfy and tends to be mutually beneficial, and did I mention Biblical? 😉 

*

Speaking of huddles, I love football, and at the risk of losing a few readers, I’ll go ahead and come out as a Dallas Cowboy Fan.  Look, I can’t help it.  I was raised on Dallas Cowboy Football.  Besides, according to legend, which I was taught as fact, the hole in the original Texas Stadium roof was so God could look down and watch His team play.  So technically, being a Cowboy fan is also Biblical. 😉

*

Anyway…..I think Christians should be more like football players when it comes to their ‘Holy Huddles.’  Football players huddle up and encourage each other, but then it’s all about their mission.  They also know that if they stay in their huddle too long, they’ll get penalized, so they break the huddle with a handclap and get to work. 

*

Are your ‘Holy Huddles’ lacking in mission?  Consider the following: 

*

“But how can they call on him (Jesus) to save them unless they believe in him?  And how can they believe in him if they have never heard of him?  And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?  And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent?  That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of the messengers who bring good news?” –  Romans 10: 14-15NLT

*

The perfect verse to follow the above is – Isaiah 6:8, The Lord asks, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people?  Who will go for us?”  Isaiah answered, “Here I am.  Send me”

*

“Alright Christians, huddle up!  We have a lot of people out there hurting, searching for that something that’s missing in their lives.  They don’t know Jesus because nobody has ever told them.  The Lord is looking for messengers to reach out to these people, messengers to bring the good news!  Christians, we are the messengers!  So when we break this huddle, let’s expand our relational circles!  Let’s reach out to those in need!   Let’s be the beautiful feet!  Alright messengers…..send me on three. 1-2-3 SEND ME!”

*

Hashtags:    #HowWillTheyKnow?  #BreakTheHuddle  #SendMe  #LiveSecond

*

Share
comments: Comments Off on Live Second – Huddle Up tags: , , , , , , , ,

Live Second – Influencers

January 15, 2013 under Unlikely Christian
Share

So, a couple months back, I AM SECOND asked me to guest blog in their “60-Days-of-Second” campaign to promote their new book, “Live Second: 365 Ways to Make Jesus First.”  I was assigned ‘Week 10’ from the book and asked to write 4 posts.

*

Before you dive into post numero dos, check out this I AM SECOND video.

*

Live Second – “Influencers”

*

Yes, we should definitely tell influential people about Jesus!

*

Yes, we, being the influential people we are, should definitely share Jesus with others!

*

I couldn’t agree more.  What great truth for influential people, and people who know influential people.

*

I, however, am neither.

*

The end.

*

Wait…..hold up…..back up…..

*

Dude…..did you even watch the Stephen Baldwin – I AM SECOND video?!?!

*

A self absorbed, money hungry, wealthy, Hollywood actor was influenced by a woman who was hired to clean his house.

*

How absolutely fantastic is that?!?! 

*

Think about that for a second.  Those are two people on totally opposite spectrums and if anybody is going to influence anybody, much less change a life in that relationship; 99.9999 times out of 100 it’s going to be the other way around. 

*

Man…..I love this story because it has God’s stamp all over it.  I mean, who else but God can orchestrate a divine appointment such as that? 

*

As Christians, we shouldn’t really be surprised to hear a story like this, because that’s how God rolls.  He loves to use unlikelys to do the unlikely.  Just open your Bible and see the unlikely cast of characters God uses to do amazing things. 

*

Paul lived to persecute Christians, then not only became one, but went on to write a big chunk of the New Testament.

*

David, the runt of the litter, almost an afterthought in his own family, went on to become a king, and a man after God’s own heart. 

*

Moses was a murderer with a confidence problem when it came to public speaking, but was nevertheless handpicked by God to lead His people out of slavery. 

*

A prostitute named Rahab provides refuge and an escape route for Joshua’s spies, then ends up in the genealogy of Jesus.

*

Mary, a teenage virgin, gives birth to God in the flesh, in a barn.

*

The list of unlikelys goes on and on, Gideon, Esther, Joseph, Sarah, etc…. 

*

And since God is unchanging, He still uses unlikelys today – unlikely people & unlikely situations, e.g. Stephen Baldwin & his cleaning lady.  I don’t know about you, but that gives me hope, because I’m an unlikely. 

*

It was unlikely, wait…..scratch that, it was highly unlikely that I would ever become a Christian, but I did.  And my life, since I gave it to God five years ago, can only be described as unbelievably unlikely.  It’s completely different now and because of God, I’m doing things today that I never ever thought I’d be doing…..like ever.

*

You know what else is unlikely? 

*

My influence reaching an influential person. 

*

First off, I don’t really know any influential people, certainly no Hollywood actors, professional athletes, musicians or anybody who might one day end up sitting in the “I AM SECOND” chair.  

*

Secondly, I’ll just be honest here; talking to people isn’t really my strong point.  I’m a little bit socially awkward, plus I’ve got this whole introvert thing going against me.  God has been chipping away in this area over the last 5 years, and we’ve made great strides, but He’s still got His hard hat, safety vest and work gloves on, so to describe me as an influential person would be a stretch in my mind. 

*

But here’s the good news, where I say, “Unlikely!”

*

God says, “Give Me those odds all day long!”

*

God is setting our divine appointments, some of which are unbelievably unlikely.

*

Our job:  Be open and willing to share.

*

God will do the rest.

*

*FootnoteTo my peeps at I AM SECOND, if you found yourself feeling sorry for me because I don’t know anybody famous, next time David Murphy, Bethany Hamilton or Lecrae drop by HQ, hook a brother up.  I’ll bring the donuts. J

*

Hashtags:  #GodCanUseYou  #BeAnUnlikely  #LiveSecond

*

Share