Thursday, May 22, 2008

One Down

Yipee! One semester is in the bank! Thanks to those who prayed me through it. Although there may have been some slacking off on the day I took Ethics, it was rough. That professor thinks in theory and I think practically so...ugh. Anyway. I did enjoy my classes this semester and I hope that's a trend that continues. I am taking one class this Summer and then the Fall semester cranks back up in mid-August.

I also want to thank those of you who prayed for my job search. God heard you and answered even before I truly started searching. Next week I will begin a part-time internship at the North Carolina Baptist State Convention. My responsibility will be to serve the Director of public relations. Some of the advantages of the job include: Leslie and I will be in the same building, I will be able to learn a lot about the church here in America and about baptist life in general and I'm looking forward to meeting lots of pastors and church leaders from around the State. It should be a very good experience and I'm thankful for it.

We move into our house at the end of the month. If you live in the area and want to lift furniture on the 31st you are welcome:) We are looking forward to having our own place.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Call to Personal Growth

No one can lead others beyond the level of his or her own personal growth, and the basis for all growth is growth in the knowledge of God. Genuine knowledge of the one true God does expand, elevate and transform a life. In fact, it is so powerful that we often shrink from a true encounter with the Infinite-Personal God we have studied. One of the greatest temptations we all face is to cut God down to manageable proportions. A man named Wilbur Rees put it this way:

"I would like to buy $3 worth of God, please; not enough to explode my soul or disturb my sleep but just enough to equal a cup of warm milk or a snooze in the sunshine. I don't want enough of him to make me love a black man or pick beets with a migrant. I want ecstasy, not transformation; I want the warmth of the womb, not a new birth. I want a pound of the Eternal in a paper sack. I would like to buy $3 worth of God please." (Leadership 4, no. 1 [Winter, 1983], 107).

Resist the temptation to shrink God; let all you have learned and all that is in Scripture shape your mental picture of God, and grow in the powerful, transforming knowledge of that God.
Dr. Hammett, SEBTS, Theology 1, Spring 2008.

Here is a helpful hint...read one book of Theology every year. There are of course plenty to choose from on the issue. If you have not read Knowing God by J.I. Packer I suggest you start there. Write me if you are interested in further suggestions.

P.S. So far the education here at SEBTS has been fantastic. So from time to time I thought it would be useful to share some of the insights gained in the classroom. I hope you enjoy it and that God will use it in your life as He has in mine.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Weekend

Leslie and I had an event filled weekend and since we have been somewhat negligent in updating the blog lately I thought I would tell you about it.
First, my friend Letha who is an M.A. student in Womens Studies here at SEBTS was visited by part of her family. Mark and Hannah Bustrum are meant to be at the IMB's training facilities in VA. But due to a scary food virus which made numerous people sick the facilities have been shut down for two weeks thus delaying the Bustrum's training and resulting in their two week homelessness. But like any good MK's would the Bustrum's decided to use their free time to travel. Mark, Hannah and Tirza (their two year old daughter) stayed with us Friday night while their other daughters Sahara and Bria camped at Letha's. It has been quite sometime since I last hung out with the Bustrums' so it was really good to see them again and catch up on what they are doing. Letha made Middle Eastern food for all of us, Fazulia, it was quite good although I'm not sure the kids liked it as much as Letha had hoped (Mac&Cheese to save the day). After Fazulia we all went to the playground for a bit and then to Goodberry's for some ice cream.
After training the Bustrums' are on their way to Portugal. Please keep them and their 3 girls in your prayers as they finish up training, travel to Lisbon, move into a new apartment, start language study and begin forming new relationships. Pray that the Lord of the harvest would bless their efforts as they seek to make Him known.
After the Bustrum's left on Saturday our friend Natalie came to visit. She went with Elizabeth and Leslie to Raleigh's handmade market. The report made it sound like they all had a good time. I stayed at the apartment to put a dent in a book for my baptist history class. (The book is called Uneasy in Babylon by Barry Hankins it is a history of the SBC controversy from the perspective of a moderate.) Later that night Letha came back over to the apartment, we made shrimp and chicken kabobs and watched Natalie's favorite new movie Juno. Sunday morning we attended the Summit Church in Durham. Leslie and I have spent the entire semester visiting churches in the area. After a lot of thought we have decided to throw our lot in at the Summit. The pastor here is J.D. Greear and if you would like to get to know more about him you can check out his blog, J.D. is an excellent communicator and many in the SBC have high hopes for him, the Summit Church and the work being accomplished through them amongst the major Universities in the area. We were told yesterday that the RDU area has been ranked the #1 educational center in America for the second year running by Forbes. The fact that this church is so burdened to reach these universities and the world for Christ is the main reason we decided to join. We are excited about all that God has in store for us and the Summit over the next 3 years.

Below are some ways that you can being praying for us during the month of May.
-I'm finishing up my first semester on the 22nd. There are exams to be taken and a few papers to still be written before then. Please pray for me as I seek to get it all done.
-On the 29th Leslie and I will close on a house here in Wake Forest. Please pray that all that will go smoothly.
-When the semester is over and the house move is complete I will begin looking for a part-time job. Please pray that God would lead me to a place where I can use and develop my gifts in and for His kingdom.
-Leslie has been enjoying her job at the State Convention. Continue to pray for her as she has a long drive there and back everyday.
-Please pray for the Bustrum family as they move to Portugal. You will be blessed to read their blogs and follow the work that God is doing in and through them in Western Europe. (If you click on their names a link will take you to their blogs. Mark and Hannah)

P.S. Mark, I bet you can't write a blog with more hyperlinks than this one.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Good quote

I stole this quote from a friend of mines Facebook page. It may or may not make you feel warm inside like it does me. But I thought it was worth posting anyway.

But the soul of Africa, its integrity, the slow inexorable pulse of its life, is its own and of such singular rhythm that no outsider, unless steeped from childhood in its endless, even beat, can ever hope to experience it, except only as a bystander might experience a Masai war dance knowing nothing of its music or the meaning of its steps.

--Beryl Markham