A 30 Day Challenge for you!

22 11 2013

Just came across it this morning during devotions at https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/748-niv-live-30-day-challenge, and was immediately captivated by it. I am taking up the 30 Day Challenge!

This takes you through the Four Gospels in  30 days, in audio format, in 20 minutes a day!  Once I started today’s audio I just couldn’t stop listening!  I really wanted to keep going ahead!

Try it, I am sure you will be thankful you did!

The Prodigal Who? Are we being too harsh and critical?

20 11 2013

The Prodigal Who?

Luke 15: 11-32 – http://bible.com/116/luk.15.11.nlt – gives us the story of what we call “The Story of the Prodigal Son”.  But would it be better to identify it as “The Prodigal Family”?

We see three flawed characters.

1. A father who has not disciplined his younger son, to learn between good and bad.  He was strict with his older son and taught him to be disciplined and responsible. Then when the younger son came around he was lenient and let down his guard on the rules and regulations.  Could this be a reflection of other stories in Genesis of Isaac with Esau and Jacob  http://bible.com/116/gen.27.1.nlt and then Jacob with his son Joseph http://bible.com/116/gen.37.2.nlt?

2. A younger son who is self willed and vagrant. He seems liked a pampered and spoiled brat, who has had his father give into his every whim and fancy, and his every request has been granted. Did he throw a temper tantrum, if he did not get his way?

3. An older brother who is hard working and legalistic and totally self centered. He was responsible and had a good work ethic and served his father and family well.  But he was not happy with the way his father treated his younger brother.  Was his Dad playing favorites?  What about his rights?

Do we not fall into each of these areas in our life at different times in our relationships with different people? Which one are we TODAY?


Teacher vs Student

15 11 2013

We as teachers can not determine how the the student wants to receive information.  The student will receive information best when given in the method they prefer.  It is the task of the teacher to discover that method and use it. 

Therefore when it is determined that 80% of the world want to get their information in story form, shouldn’t we as teachers use that method to expound information.  The prudent teacher will change their own preferred method to the one of the learner to insure that information will be received.

World view

15 11 2013

It has been stated that world view is formed by age 5.  But stories change world view!

What is with this man Paul? What makes him tick?

14 11 2013

            His life is an extraordinary life.  He started out as a zealous young Pharisee and was well on his way up the ladder of success.  Everyone knew that he would be the “Most Likely to Succeed” when the Sanhedrin met.

            But a sudden and radical change occurred in his life as he was on a mission to Damascus.  Later many times he described it as a meeting with “Jesus”!  He was never to be the same again.  The same people who looked up to him and thought of him as a brilliant up and coming leader opposed him and set about to kill him.

            The Book of Acts in the New Testament from chapter 13 gives the story of his life and adventure.  Our lives are never the same when we read this account slowly and deliberately.

            Then we read a summary of his life as he lays it out in 2 Corinthians 11: 21-27.  It reads in The New International Readers Version,

 21  … What anyone else dares to brag about, I also dare to brag about. I’m speaking like a fool! 22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Do they belong to the people of Israel? So do I. Are they Abraham’s children? So am I. 23 Are they serving Christ? I am serving him even more. I’m out of my mind to talk like this!

I have worked much harder. I have been in prison more often. I have suffered terrible beatings. Again and again I almost died. 24 Five times the Jews gave me 39 strokes with a whip. 25 Three times I was beaten with sticks. Once they tried to kill me by throwing stones at me. Three times I was shipwrecked. I spent a night and a day in the open sea.

26 I have had to keep on the move. I have been in danger from rivers. I have been in danger from robbers. I have been in danger from people from my own country. I have been in danger from those who aren’t Jews. I have been in danger in the city, in the country, and at sea. I have been in danger from people who pretended they were believers.

27 I have worked very hard. Often I have gone without sleep. I have been hungry and thirsty. Often I have gone without food. I have been cold and naked.

            So what was this man all about?  How could he when he was all beaten up and sore sitting in a Philippian jail be singing at midnight and then later writing to these same people in a letter written from another prison say to them, “Rejoice”?

            Could it be that he was motivated by what he knew was ahead of him? Let’s see what he says in 2 Corinthians 4: 16-18,

16 We don’t give up. Our bodies are becoming weaker and weaker. But our spirits are being renewed day by day. 17 Our troubles are small. They last only for a short time. But they are earning for us a glory that will last forever. It is greater than all our troubles.

18 So we don’t spend all our time looking at what we can see. Instead, we look at what we can’t see. What can be seen lasts only a short time. But what can’t be seen will last forever.

            What can we learn from Paul’s life for our lives today?

Bible Orality changes the Face of Missions!

12 11 2013

A new method of “Telling God’s Story” which is as old as when time began is changing the Face of Missions! Jesus used this method it seems in an exclusive way as we read in Matthew 13: 34, “…Jesus spoke to the multitudes in stories; and without a story He did not speak to them.”
We want to encourage the use of this method, and share the tools we have found to be effective as widely as we can, so we can take the Gospel to the ends of the earth, and so hasten the return of Jesus back!

Is Story-Telling just a Fad?

11 11 2013

Story Telling a Fad!

          I had learned in my Homiletics class in Bible College to do an Inductive Study of a Bible Story or a passage of Scripture and then to find three points from the story to preach/teach what I felt the Holy Spirit would have me share with the people for their edification.

          But now I am learning to do the Inductive Bible Study, so that I could tell the story accurately and with all the details and trust the Holy Spirit, who knows the hearts and innermost lives of the hearer to make the story personally come alive in their lives.

          This was at first a scary thought.  What if the person does not interpret the scripture properly?  I would have to take a back seat to the Holy Spirit.  I would have no chance to display my vast knowledge and my education.  Could I trust the Holy Spirit to do a good job?  And what are my responsibilities?

          Bible Orality has proved to be, not a fad, but what God has been preparing for us to use this modern age of technology, to reach the 70% of the people, who cannot or will not read, and wish to receive their daily information in Oral/Visual methods or in “sound bites”.

          I am finding that in an era of Information and Technology, where people are over loaded with knowledge, the best method to use is in engaging people in story-telling. Here are two resources that you will find helpful: