Do You Have Fun At Church?

Typewriter

 

I was sitting on the steps off the sanctuary platform at church this morning, watching two of our team member’s kids run around the front of the sanctuary. They acted like they were having the time of their life, chasing after each other, and taking breaks in between to sing a song and rock out on invisible instruments.

It made me smile, sitting there and watching them, but it made me a little sad as well. How many people come to church on Sunday morning, not to have a good time with friends and family, but because it is an obligation, something they feel like they have to do in order to have a good week, or because someone is making them come?

It is unrealistic to expect everyone that comes to church to show up with the same kind of joy and freedom these two kids had, for a variety of reasons. But it still begs the question:

Do you have fun at church?

What In The World…

Typewriter

 

I have finally reached the realization that all of the planning, thinking and talking about writing that I have been doing over the past few months (my poor wife!) has been nothing more than procrastination.

I keep telling myself that I want to write about theology, share different music stuff, and even write some fiction. In all of that it is easy to get overwhelmed and think that I need to have a separate “platform” or blog for each of those interests.

If that were the case, I would have to find a way to separate myself into at least three different people, and let each one focus on writing and talking about those different things.

Since I cannot split myself into multiple beings, I have realized that I need to accept myself and my growing list of interests as simply a part of who I am.

If you read my byline on this blog and other social media sites, it reads, “writer, husband, musician, pastor”. These are not in order of priority, but do a good job of describing me and what I am passionate about.

If you find yourself stuck trying to find your voice or figure out what you should write about, start with where you are. Be comfortable writing in your own voice, and write from your heart.

Review – Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Nelson's Illustrated Bible DictionaryI got home the other day and noticed a rather bulky box sitting on my front porch. I retrieved it from the porch, and I could not wait to open the box so I used my car keys to pry open the box and cut the tape that held the flaps down. Once I got through the air filled plastic bubbles, I found a lovely hardcover book, and I was immediately taken with how nice it looked.

Once I cracked open the book, I realized that this bible dictionary is much nicer than most I have seen. While many of the one’s available are printed on “normal” paper, with black and white images and a handful of color photos and maps. If you took the color-filled pages from other dictionaries, added more pictures, charts, maps and so on, and then added words, you would have Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary.

If you are looking for a well done bible dictionary to add to your arsenal, I would recommend this one. It may not be as in depth for someone looking to do seminary homework or deep research, but for the casual bible study or for a good general resource, this one is perfect.

I received a copy of Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary in the mail in exchange for an honest review from booklookbloggers.com.

[Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”]

A.D. 30 – A Novel, by Ted Dekker

A. D. 30In Ted Dekker’s latest offering, “A.D. 30 – A Novel”, we have the story of Maviah, and follow her along in a quest to restore honor to her family and her father’s kingdom. This is no simple story that just happens to occur during a time of great political and religious upheaval. This is a story that intersects with the character of Yeshua in way that makes his words come alive in new and exciting ways. Too often we come across attempts at including Yeshua (Jesus Christ) in a story that fails to capture more than just his name in the storyline. In this novel, Dekker treats Yeshua in a way that both honors and adds an air of mystery to him. He paints him as a man that many long to follow, but few can understand.

Without giving away much of the story itself, I would encourage anyone that enjoys reading Ted Dekker’s work to pick up “A.D. 30″. It is well worth the time to read, and will offer you a different perspective on Yeshua and the political struggles that were going on during the time. If you have never read a Ted Dekker novel before, this is the one I would recommend you start with.

 

What I Am Reading

Scenic ReadsSince I am a seminary student, there are quite a few books that I read during the semester for a given class. This semester I am in a course titled Proclamation, so several of the books I am reading are on preaching. Three of the books we are using for the course are:

Another great book we are using (which I have already read) is Preaching Essentials: A Practical Guide by Lenny Luchetti. A bonus is the fact that Lenny is one of the professors for the course!

In addition to reading for school, I have my nose in three other books at the moment:

I always find myself reading more than one book, but I seem to be in quite a few more than normal. I’m enjoying reading the new Ted Dekker book as it is a bit of a departure from his normal, but presents a story that takes place in Jesus’ time from the perspective of a very unique character. I will post a review of the book once I have finished reading it.

What books are you reading right now?