Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Fishtank Pastor

It is often the ban and blessing of a pastor that he, and his household, live in a fishtank. That is, they live in imaginary glass houses and everyone is watching them at all times. I am always caught off guard, and a little freaked-out when a parishoner tells me the saw me doing such-and-such in a town 45 minutes from home. It always reminds me that they are watching me no matter where I am. More importantly God is watching me every moment of every day.

The old poem, If Jesus Came to Your House” seems appropriate here.

If Jesus Came to Your House

If Jesus came to your house, to spend a day or two,
If he came with out warning..I wonder what you'd do....

Yes, if Jesus came to your house, to spend a day or two,
If He came unexpected, just dropped in on you.

I know you'd give your nicest room to such an honored guest,
And all the food you'd serve to Him would be the very best.

And you would keep assuring Him you're glad to have Him there,
That serving Him in your home is joy beyond compare.

But when you saw Him coming, would you meet Him at the door
With arms outstretched in welcome to your heavenly visitor?

Or would you have to change your clothes before you let Him in?
Or hide some magazines and put the Bible where they'd been?

Would you turn off the radio and hope He hadn't heard?
And wish you hadn't uttered that last loud hasty word?

And would you hide your worldly music and put some hymn books out?
Could you let Jesus just walk right in, or would you rush about?

And I wonder, if the Savior spend a day or two with you,
Would you go right on doing the things you always do?

Would you go right on saying the things you always say?
Would life for you continue as it does from day to day?

And would your family conversation keep up it's usual pace?
And would you find it hard each meal to say a table grace?

Would you sing the songs you always sing, and read the books you read,
And let Him know the things on which your mind and spirit feed?

And would you take Jesus with you everywhere you'd planned to go?
Or maybe would you change your plans for just a day or so?

Would you be glad to have Him meet your very closest friends,
Or hope that they would stay away until His visit ends?

And would you be glad to have Him stay forever on and on?
Or would you sigh with great relief when He at last was gone?

Oh, it might be interesting to know the things that you would do,
If Jesus came in person to spend some time with you.

If Jesus came to your house, I wonder what you'd do.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Do All For The Glory of God

Scripture: I Corinthians 10:15-11:1
Key Verse: I Corinthians 10:23, 31

23. Everything is permissible--but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible--but not everything is constructive.
31. So, whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

We cannot have real communion (fellowship, friendship, or intimacy) with the world, the flesh, and the devil, and at the same time claim to have fellowship with the Father. Oil and water don’t mix. God says nothing is bad in and of itself, for all things were created richly for us to enjoy. But the devil has hijacked some of earth’s pleasures to ensnare us, to pull us away from God, and to trap us in sins vice-like grip. Nothing is bad except for its attachment to the evil one and his demons. That makes it evil, even though the thing itself is not evil.

All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. – v 23
All things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. – v 23
All things are lawful for me, but not all things glorify God. – v 31

What is he saying? Is he saying we should not have anything to do with the world? No, for then we would have to leave the world altogether. He is simply saying we cannot be double minded, or two-faced, or speak out of two sides of our mouth. “Fellowship with” is the key here. To enjoy, to have fun with, to value certain things, to laugh at the same jokes, to go to the same excess as the world is to cut ourselves off from fellowship with God. God won’t have anything to do with the devil’s stuff.

Ask yourself three questions about every activity
* Is it helpful to me, my family, my neighbors?
* Is it edifying, uplifting, constructive, or is it destructive?
* Is it glorifying to Christ? Does it magnify him, please him, or shame him?

I know what you are thinking. “How can I possibly evaluate everything I do this way?” The answer is to put this test to the things distract you from the Lord. Is Facebook glorifying to God, does it edify, is it helpful? It can be, or it can go the other way. It can be used for evil and the purposes of the evil one. Make the distinction clear.

“Whatever you do, in word, or deed, (or in typing) do all for the glory of God.”

Thought: “The unexamined life is not worth living.” – Socrates

Walk with the KING today, and be a blessing!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Welcome To Your Pastor's Blog

Did you ever feel like you have more to say than can be said in an allotted time? Well, I do. I know that sounds amazing, after all, the preacher gets 40 minutes on Sunday, every Sunday, to blog or blab his way. Yet, there are things to say that are not always in sinc with the message topic.

Over the past few weeks I wrote a community paper for our neighborhood addressing some problems all of us have been complaining about to the township. Five days later my neighbor greeted me and said how helpful that was. By that time I had already forgotten which paper he was talking about. You see, because of my three web sites, preaching, writing a church planting articles, writing articles for the church newsletter, writing for a prayer magazine, and writing chapters for a book I am working on, and writing hundreds of e-mails, and my daily devotional journal, I couldn't remember which article he might have been referring to.

So, here I am to blab to my heart's content. Perhaps this will be like Seinfeld, "a TV show about nothing", this too will be about nothing in particular, but everything and anything that might be on my mind and heart on any given day.

In any event it is an attempt at something new, and I am up for that. Are you?

Pastor Dick LaFountain
Senior Pastor
Grove City Alliance Church