Small steps in faith

Sunday, May 31, 2009

"The Fatherhood of God and the Worried Soul"

These are my notes from Rob's sermon at Apex last night.
The worship music was beautiful. I love when we sing "True Light". It's a great song to sing if you've been struggling with anxiety..hard times. Another song we did is "Mighty to Save" I always loved the way my friend Adam sang that song.

Matthew 6:25-34

We all know how to worry. Anxiety is a poison.
Concern leads to worry leads to despair leads to death.

The audience Jesus is speaking to are people at the end of their rope,the dregs of the culture.

Anxiety is an assault on the Fatherhood of God.
Worry and anxiety is idolatry of unbelief. Anxiety is a sin.

Worry is a rejection of:

1. God's care for you
1 Peter 5:7
Dictators ruled by producing anxiety.
Jesus decreases anxiety

2. God's better wisdom for you
Jeremiah 29:11 "I know the plans I have for you..."

3. God's provision for you
Most of us aren't worrying about the food and water. We are worrying about the "extras" in our life.

Strategies for Defeating Worry

1. Get your focus off of yourself. Hebrews 12 "Fix our eyes on Jesus.."
The eyes of your heart are looking in the wrong place.

2. See worry for the sin that it is.
Worry limits you. It shuts you down. It affects your relationship with Christ. It affects your prayer life.
Worry has little substance.

3. Align your priorites with His kingdom
Anxiety is often a blend of value and kingdom.
We have convuluted our lives. We stay stressed out and worn out.
What God provids "isn't good enough"

Trust today that you will receive what you need for tomorrow when tomorrow gets here

Common phrases we use with worry
"But what if...."
"How Am I...."

Our life is a vapor
We are clueless what tomorrow holds.
Rob told a very touching and honest story of how he felt everything in his life was going wrong except for his family. He was stressed with school (he recently got his PhD)..ministry was hard..
He took a trip to his small hometown in Brookville,Indiana to visit the gravesite of his babysitter who had died in her 40's of a rare cancer. As he looked around at the gravesites he saw many who had died..suddenly. They may have worried and had anxiety..but for what?

If you are someone who doesn't worry...are you worrying about the right things? Lost souls

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Amish Love

What’s all the hubbub about Amish fiction? Major media outlets like Time and ABC Nightline are covering it, and authors like Cindy Woodsmall are making the New York Times bestseller list regularly. What makes these books so interesting?

Check out the recent ABC Nightline piece here about Cindy and her titles When the Heart Cries, When the Morning Comes, and When the Soul Mends. It’s an intriguing look at Amish culture and the time Cindy has spent with Amish friends.

And don’t forget that Cindy’s new book The Hope of Refuge hits store shelves August 11, and is available for preorder now.

"Night Watchman" by Mark Mynheir

I love mystery writers and detective stories. I haven't been able to finish this so I'm including the summary and info on the author. To order the book you can go here

Ray Quinn is a tough, quick-witted homicide detective in love with his partner, Trisha Willis. She gives Ray something to live for—something to hope in. Until a barrage of bullets leaves Trisha murdered and Ray crippled.

Struggling with his new physical disability and severe depression, Quinn turns to whiskey, scorn, and a job as a night watchman to numb the pain. But when a pastor and dancer are found dead in an apparent murder-suicide, the pastor’s sister approaches Quinn for help.

Reluctantly, Quinn takes the case and is plunged into the perilous Orlando. Soon he discovers that, not only was the pastor murdered, but the case may be linked to his and Trisha’s ambush. Torn between seeking revenge or responsibility, Quinn is thrust into the case of his life.

Author Mark Mynheir gives readers his most profound police thriller to date with The Night Watchman (first book in The Night Watchman Private Detective Agency Series). Readers of all ages will devour this gripping murder mystery that bristles with tension and intrigue. In a taut cop-style all his own, Mynheir delivers an inside look at the thoughts, feelings, fears, and challenges police officers experience while investigating violent crimes and the lost souls who commit them.

Author Bio:
A detective with the Criminal Investigations Unit of the Palm Bay Police Department, Mark Mynheir investigates violent crimes and writes riveting Christian fiction. A U.S. Marine with a passion for martial arts and firearms training, Mark has worked on narcotics units, SWAT teams, and myriad high-risk situations. His four novels offer a realistic glimpse into the gritty world of law enforcement and the rarely seen raw emotions behind the badge. Mark lives in Florida with his wife and three children.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Get the Gospel Right

These are my notes from Apex on Sat night.
Jason Wing did the message...and did a great job.
I loved our worship music. Phil,Abi, and Issac have awesome voices together.
I loved Hosanna,How Great is Our God, and Jesus Paid It All...made the hairs on my arms stand up.

Galatians 1:6-10

For context, Paul is angry because false teaching has crept in to the church in Galatia.
Most of the believers were less than 2 yrs in their faith.
They were taking Jesus and adding obedience to the Jewish tradition

Many false teachings today. At WSU they had a man "preaching" and condemning. The question is...Was he preaching the gospel? Is it really "a big deal?"

1 Easy Believism...Believe..pray the prayer. They leave out the obedience.
2 Health,Wealth, and Prosperity..We are not promised success,money,or healing if we believe.
3 Truth is subjective..radical postmodern movement
4 Singleness perfectionism...everyone who is saved speaks in tongues....

Big Idea
If we preach the gospel we must get the gospel right. Our doctrine needs to be in our forefront. It is a big deal.

Big Problem
We often get the gospel wrong.

Big Question
What is the gospel? Galatians 1:3-5
3Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, 4who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, 5to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
In a nutshell...that's the gospel.

Big Picture of the Bible
1 God is sovereign over all things...He is beyond space and time. God is the center
2 God created the world with sinless perfection..Genesis 1
3 Book of the end God will restore the world to sinless perfection

We live between Genesis and Revelation with sin affects us individually and collectively.
Jesus defeated sin through the cross and resurrection.
Romans 5

How does this tie into your life and story?
1 God and Satan are real
2 All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
3 God's wrath is poured out on all who sin. God is love but He is also just.

Spiritually we are dead
Our human nature makes us try to work our way to be right with God
Salvation is a gift of can't earn it.
The giver of the gift gets the glory not the receiver
God loved us enough to die and cover our sins. He rose.
The wrath remains on those who don't believe AND obey.
By grace we are's out of obedience that we advance the kingdom of God.

Jesus was our substitutionary atonement..He absorbed the wrath of God
Can you see how his death and resurrection affect your life and eternity?
Redemption from condemnation

You need to count the cost...deny ourselves and take up the cross. We live in a culture where we want to supply not deny ourselves. Jesus says "Follow Me"..not Rob,not Apex,not Buddha...Jesus
Life is Christ centered not self centered

Was the WSU preacher preaching the gospel? When you take koolaid and add 2 drops of's poison.
When you preach 99% gospel and add false's poison.
It is a big deal.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Do they have this at your Doctor's office :^)?

My friend Maggie sent this to me ...I thought it was cute.

I am sure that you have seen pharmaceutical advertising in doctor's offices on everything from tissues to exam table cover paper.. Well, in my book, this one should get the prize....

One of our doctor buddies e-mailed back: 'If the light stays on for more than 4 hours, call your erectrician.'

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Mickey Mouse's 'voice' dies

It's a sad day in Disneyworld :^(

Los Angeles - Wayne Allwine, the actor who voiced Mickey Mouse for more than 30 years, has died.

The Walt Disney Co says Allwine died on Monday of complications from diabetes, with Russi Taylor, his wife of 20 years and the voice of Minnie Mouse, by his side. He was 62.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Weekend messages..Apex and MCC

I went to two different services this weekend.
On Saturday I went to Apex. Rob talked about the Prodigal son . The focus is put on the younger son many times when the actual focus should be the father.
Which brother are you?
The younger brother is lost. So is the older brother.
Two ways we are alienated from God

1 Through self discovery
2 Through moral conformity

The younger brother makes a scandalous request by asking for his this culture this would be a dishonor to the father. The pharisees know this
He goes on an empty with pigs would also be unclean in the jewish culture
He comes to a sobering conclusion that he needs to come back.
Shocking homecoming...the father runs to him. In this culture the son would go to the father and the the father doesn't have to forgive.
The fattened calf signifies meat that they would have only eaten in special occasions

The older brother has a disrespectful response and a response of injustice
Many of us are like the older brother. We are obsessed with entitlement. " I go to church,I do my quiet time, I serve..therefore I'm entitled to...a good job,a child,a bigger house....etc
The only thing we are entitled to is hell...anything above that is grace.
Both brothers are trying to control the father.
You can obey the word of God and be lost.
A divided ending
Both sons are guilty of wanting what God provided...not God himself.

On Sunday I went to MCC(Miamisburg Christian Church) to visit my friend Adam who leads worship. did a great job with Cannons! :^) and I realized how much I've missed your prayers.
They are doing a series on Next Steps for their church
The church exists to help people begin and build their relationship with Jesus.
I really liked the quote on prayer they gave
"God rules the world through the prayers of His people."
"In prayer,real prayer, we begin to think God's thoughts after Him: to desire the things he desires, to love the things he loves. Progressively we are taught to see things from His point of view." Richard Foster

They are using the saying: Plug In..Charge Up..Live Out
He took each of these areas and applied them to their church and the goals they see for the church to help in these areas.

For Plug In..the goal is to plug in to a relationship with Jesus. So many people in Ohio that do not plug in to a church. 18% of Ohio population attend a weekend service..1/5.

Charge Up is becoming involved in the small groups. I know from my own experience that unless you become part of a smaller don't get that feeling of belonging. You don't connect on that more intimate level where you are sharing your life with those who genuinely care for you. "The way to God is seldom traveled alone"

Live becoming involved in the ministry and living out your faith...not just on Sunday. Their church is in the process of planting churches in Canada and New York. They are looking out to see how they can make an impact on other areas of the world by changing the future of 200+ children around the world.

Two churches..same focus...change lives for the glory of God.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Healthy Planet Healthy You

This morning I went to work on my day off to get nursing contact hours but also to find out how I can be a healthier person with what I use in the environment. The presentation was done by a nurse, Donna Walls, who is also an herbalist and aromatherapist.
She started with things around the house that we clean with and store with.
Her basic premise is that you should be more afraid of the chemicals than the germs.
Facts prove that many of our cleaning products cause serious health problems.

Safe alternatives you can use:
Vinegar,baking soda,coarse salt, lemon juice or fresh,sliced lemons,boiling water,sunshine,borax or glycerin soaps, and essential oils.
Some of these I knew. We actually do use vingegar to clean our toilets.
If you use bleach..stop. If you use Plug in fresheners..unplug them.

Another concern is plastic. No plastics are safe but some are safer than others.
Use #1,2,4 and 5. Avoid #3,6,7
Don't put plastic in the microwave...there's a big thing now about baby bottles..the safer is the glass or is free from BPA. The problem is they are creating zenoestrogens which attach to our receptor cells and cause problems such as infertility,ADHD,cancers.
Use glass,stainless steel,ceramic. DON"T reuse plastic water bottles!

For personal care avoid antibacterial soaps...they are why we see "superbugs"
Good old fashioned hand washing with soap and water is the best thing..I know that even from being a nurse.
Avoid....parabens and Phthalates(phth words) in your lotions,soaps,etc
The website gives you safe products to use. is best if possible. If not here are the "dirty dozen" that you need to go organic with:
peaches,apples, sweet bell peppers,celery,nectarines,strawberries,cherries,pears,grapes(imported),spinach,lettuce, potatoes
Don't use artificial sweetners..although splenda is from sugar they use chlorine to process it. Use honey,stevia(my diabetic patients use this) or sugar in the raw.
Choose dark chocolate. Use organic meats and dairy. They are not treated with hormones

For your lawn:
Here's a formula for a safe,inexpensive weed killer:
Equal parts of vodka,natural liquid soap,vinegar,...mix and spray on plants and vegetation as needed.
Natural fertilizers.. recycled coffee grounds..Darrell and I do this ..we get them from Starbucks,bone meal,wood ash, fish emulsion

Reuse,Recycle, Reduce and Repair

Reuse things such as towels,batteries
Use the canvas bags for shopping..NOT plastic or paper

Consumerism..85-95% of consumables are not in use 6 months after purchase..they are in landfills!

Can something be fixed or salvaged or swapped

Reduce your carbon footprint..You can calculate your own by going to

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mother's Day in Cleveland,Tn

These are some pictures of our trip to Cleveland,Tn for Mother's Day. It was a long 11 hours but worth it. We ate awesome hamburgers at a restaurant called 5 Guys with Kristen,Zach,and Kristen's friends Becca,Amanda,and Jackie. We got to see Kristen's new house and meet her cat,Templeton Snapps Brown :) We loaded up the car with Zach's stuff and brought him home for the summer.It was an awesome Mother's Day!!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Amazing musicians

I found this on another blog and loved it!!! What amazing musicians!

Friday, May 08, 2009

"Enduring Justice" by Amy Wallace

I had the best of intentions to finish this book but it turned into a crazy week.
I hope to finish it in the next week. It's a great story that keeps your attention.
You can buy the book by going here

Here's the info and storyline:

Enduring Justice, Hanna Kessler’s childhood secret has remained buried for over two decades. But when the dark shadows of her past threaten to destroy those she loves, Hanna must face the summer that changed her life and the man who still haunts her thoughts.

Crimes Against Children FBI Agent, Michael Parker knows what it means to get knocked down. And when the system fails and a white supremacist is set free, Michael’s drive for retribution eclipses all else.

A racist’s well-planned assault forces Hanna and Michael to decide between executing vengeance and pursuing justice. When the attack turns personal, is healing still possible?

This thought-provoking novel deals with healing from sexual abuse, the balance of justice and mercy, and maintaining mixed-race friendships in the midst of racial tension. Readers who enjoy investigative thrillers by Dee Henderson, Colleen Coble, and Catherine Coulter, and who watch crime dramas like Law & Order: SVU, Criminal Minds, and Without a Trace will love this book—and the entire series.

Author Bio:
Amy Wallace is the author of Ransomed Dreams and Healing Promises, a homeschool mom, and self-confessed chocoholic. She is a graduate of the Gwinnett County Citizens Police Academy and a contributing author of several books including God Answers Moms’ Prayers and Chicken Soup for the Soul Healthy Living Series: Diabetes. She lives with her husband and three children in Georgia.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

The Cloning Question...great article in Relevant

This is an article in my Relevant email today. I feel like it's an episode from Twilight Zone...only it's real life..and it's dangerous in so many ways.

The Cloning Question by Adam Smith

It's finally happened. The first cloned human embryos have been implanted in a womb. Well, that is, according to a self-described "maverick" doctor working from a secret lab somewhere in the Middle East.

It sounds like a cheesy sci-fi scenario, but Dr. Panayiotis Zavos announced last week that he had successfully cloned human embryos and implanted them into the wombs of four women. None of the cloned embryos resulted in a viable pregnancy, but Zavos is undeterred. He says he will continue trying, and believes the birth of the first human clone is just a few years away.

While human embryos have been cloned before (to harvest stem cells), this is the first time a scientist has implanted them. Most countries have strict laws against the implantation of cloned embryos. Zavos has been roundly condemned for the practice by religious leaders, President Obama and fellow scientists. Obama called the practice "dangerous" and "profoundly wrong," while Bishop Patrick O'Donoghue of Lancaster said Zavos' actions were "deeply repugnant for the future of humanity."

So, it appears human cloning may be verging on a possibility. Yet, there seems to be a disconnect between what can be done and what should be done. Human cloning, of course, raises a lot of ethical questions. Any kind of cloning presents grave risks for the cloned animal. Dolly, the famed cloned sheep, was euthanized six years after her birth due to lung disease and premature arthritis. Moreover, upwards of 90 percent of the sheep cloned after Dolly have died soon after birth. Cloned animals have been found to suffer a high rate of deformities and metabolic disorders. Considering the tremendous risks involved in the process and the trial-and-error involved (it took 276 failed attempts to clone a sheep before Dolly was produced), it seems reckless to subject a human life to those perils

The ethical implications, though, go far deeper than biology. What about identity and family relations? What relationship would a human have to a genetic copy of themselves? Would they be a parent? A peer? A twin? Also, where would a cloned human derive his or her identity? Of course, just because two people have an identical genetic makeup does not guarantee they will be in any way similar emotionally or psychologically (take, for example, identical twins), but imagine the psychological impact of having a twin who is decades older. Or, perhaps, is even deceased. One of Zavos' cloned embryos uses genetic material from a 10-year-old who died in a car accident. It raises concerns about the expectations of parents who want a genetic duplicate of a deceased child. The cloned outcome might be physically identical, but would develop as an entirely unique individual. In other words, cloning doesn't provide a second chance or a ticket back from the grave. It provides an entirely separate individual who happens to look like the deceased.

For Christians, cloning has theological implications as well. The idea of "meddling in God's domain" is not a new one in science or medicine, but it seems most appropriate in the case of cloning. The act of cloning removes the fundamental design of joining genetic material from two individuals to make a third, unique individual. And, on a more philosophical level, it raises questions about the nature of the soul. What is the makeup of a soul? Is it merely the sum of our experiences, or is there something more ethereal about it?

Zavos claims his work is both ethical and responsible. His only intention, he says, is to provide options for infertile couples. "We're not interested in cloning the Michael Jordans and Michael Jacksons of the world, but rather assisting infertile couples that deserve the right to have a biological child to have one," he says.

So, is cloning merely a new step in treating infertility? Will science one day judge human cloning as benignly as in-vitro fertilization? After all, there were ethical outcries against so-called "test-tube babies" at the outset, and now it's a common practice. Even those within the Church tend to see it as morally neutral. Will cloning be looked upon the same way?

Regardless of the clamor raised by politicians, scientists and religious leaders, it is likely that Zavos (or doctors like him) will one day succeed. We may face the reality of cloned humans living normal lives amongst us. How, then, is the Church to respond? As ludicrous and outlandish as it seems, odds are the Church will have to deal with the particular psychological, biological and theological implications of cloned humans. As much as our theology may rail against the idea, we have to prepare ourselves for the reality and respond—as best we can determine—how we feel Christ would have.

Monday, May 04, 2009

"Nine Ways God Always Speaks* offer only available in certain states " by Mark Herringshaw and Jennifer Schuchmann

I just finished reading this book this afternoon. Some books you breeze through and you're finished. This book I took chapter by chapter to catch every thought. When I first heard of the title on a twitter post it caught my eye. I've always known God speaks but when you say that out loud..many people think you're crazy. I have often said he yells inside my head until I listen. Sometimes it's something I don't want to listen to. I have tried to ignore it but the feeling gets stronger and stronger. It's hard to describe. They did an EXCELLENT job in this book describing exactly how I feel with a variety of stories from others who have heard God speak.
Each chapter describes a different way that God may speak go you. You see, God doesn't get all of our attention the same way. The other thing is...a lot of us don't hear because we don't listen. We aren't looking for that opportunity or we don't recognize it when it smacks us in the face.
Mark and Jennifer give us nine ways:
1 our circumstances
2 other people
3 history
4 nature
5 dreams and visions
6 emotions
7 our conscience
8 his word
9 the way you give him permission to speak to you in response to your obedience to what you last heard him say to you

I learned of ways that I didn't even think about. I found the chapter on dreams and visions fascinating because I do often wonder if there are people like Joseph who God speaks to through dreams.
I would highly recommend buying this book and figuring out for yourself how God speaks to you. If you don't hear his voice..why is that?

Sunday, May 03, 2009

An update

Just thought I'd give an update on some things:

1 Still working for Bull Family Diabetes Center 3days/5days...definite job security :)
2 Darrell still at Serra ...for the moment..announcements will be made this week as to which dealerships in the area are likely to close
3 Zach coming home in 1 week for the summer. He will be a server at Max and Erma's
4 Kristen graduates in Aug with a degree in Psychology from Lee. She will be living in Cleveland,Tennessee with 2 of her friends...looking for employment:)
5 Still attend Apex...and Chris's house church and love both :)
6 Looking forward to seeing Coldplay in June at Riverbend...thanks Darrell :)
7 Looking forward to seeing The Fray in June at PNC
8 Lost 11 lbs...5 more to go and I'm actually starting to like exercise :)
9 Getting ready to plant a vegetable garden
10 still loves Boston Red Sox !!!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

"A Son and A Father"

These are my notes from Apex.

John 5:19-23

Who is your dad?

Imitation is the most authentic form of worship
We imitate objects of our affection
How can I know God is my father?
By imitation of who He is...not just by doing religious things
1st John 2:6
1st Peter 2:21
Disciples of Christ imitate him

A bad impression is mocking
God will not be mocked

A key to understanding the fatherhood of God is acknowledging you are utterly powerless without Him.

If you store up religious acts but there is no heart of faith...Jesus will say depart from me...I never knew you

We imitate God because of:

1 His love. The father loves the son. Does your love motivate you to imitate him?
2 His enablement. We are given the Holy Spirit
3 His authority. All judgment is given to Jesus
Derived authority from God
4 His worth.

Are you imitating the nature of Christ so closely that others are worshiping him?
What is your motivation? Passion? Holy Spirit? Seeking God in prayer? stepping out in his authority? So that God gets glory?