Things I Think

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44 Responses

  1. London says:

    Works for me

  2. covered says:

    Michael, it appears as though you have come to your senses! I can’t imagine how difficult it is to deal with so many different personalities as you do here. It has to be like herding cats. You do it well and you do it as unto The Lord. When I can quote guys like Steve Brown and then N.T. Wright from the pulpit, it’s because you helped expand my borders and I am grateful. This blog is no longer a place to hate CC. You have given this work to The Lord much like the boy gave the fishes and the loaves, and God has blessed this work and is being glorified by it. I wish I knew how many people like me have sat here and learned from others like you, MLD, Xenia, Nomans, EM, Josh, BrianD, brian, jlo, etc, etc,. This is a safe place to grow in the knowledge of our Lord on a daily basis. For this reason alone, I hope that you know that we appreciate you, we love you, we trust you and we believe that this is one of God’s tools. Thanks for your obedience.

  3. London says:

    I do hope that folks like Normans, BrianD, Scott etc will at least come back and participate even if they don’t want to lead or moderate.
    We need their voices in our lives.

  4. Michael says:

    Covered,
    I hope and pray that I’m doing the right thing.
    I don’t see any value in personality conflicts and division…we have enough of that without the blog contributing to it.
    When we dialog with folks outside our traditions, our vision of God gets bigger…and better…and more wonderful.
    If I can help facilitate that, then we have value.
    I’m not sure I have the right to take down the prayer thread without providing an alternative…that always stops me when I want to shut down and move deeper into the woods.
    there will be days when I write about CC or SGM or the others…but my main concern is about how we go beyond these issues to find real hope and faith in Christ.
    Than you for the kind words…you think more of me than I am…and I hope I pass that gift on to others who may not know how much they mean to someone.

  5. Michael says:

    London,

    We need all the voices here…even the contrary ones.
    This can’t be about my voice alone…I don’t have that much to say of value.
    Right now I feel very strange without them, though.
    I feel like I got dropped off at camp for the summer… 🙂

  6. Joe Marino says:

    Some personalities need dividing. I have learned from experience that you can have a contrary opinion without being a condescending, sarcastic, hurtful person.

  7. I did not see the Go Daddy commercial. I had an interesting Super Bowl Sunday.
    We were suppose to go to LA after church to a high school buddy’s party that we attend every year, but decided we were too tired and agreed go home after church, and watch the game alone and probably fall asleep for the afternoon.

    Coming home from church, my daughter called wanting to bring the kids over so she could do her laundry – strike one!

    When I was helping her unload the car, I noticed a screw in one of her balding tires. So I told her I would have it looked at. 3 places later and $650 lighter, I bought her 4 new tires – strike 2!

    I arrived home at 4:30 and my grandkids wouldn’t let me watch the game. My granddaughter sat on the remote to hide it from me. So we watched SpongBob (up to that point, it was a better choice than the 1st half of the game.)

    My daughter came in later, flipped my granddaughter over to get the remote and made me watch Beyoncie with her, which was pretty good. I got to watch the 2nd half opening kickoff return and the beginning of the blackout. The kids commandeered the remote again and it was Cartoon Network the rest of the way. Strike 3!

    But that’s OK, my wife said she had never heard of the Raisins before… so perhaps the game would have been lost on her. So, we in fact saw none of the commercials.

  8. Sarah says:

    Michael…continuing to pray for wisdom, and I’m still around for what it’s worth.

    Oh, and #5…can I brag on our fellowship again? We traditionally take the Super Bowl Sunday and the following week to serve at Room at the Inn. This is a ministry shared by local churches and hosted by a very large Baptist church…they take in homeless people beginning in the afternoon. They are given the chance to shower, have a meal, have some fellowship, sleep in a warm place with decent bedding, have breakfast and a service of some type in the afternoon. On Super Bowl Sunday we have the game on and provide “game type” food.

    The other thing I love…there is literally a line to sign up to volunteer every year and it get filled up and has a waiting list.

  9. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Commerical was disgusting even if the woman in it was beautiful

  10. Michael says:

    Sarah,

    It’s worth more than you will ever know…
    Love the Super Bowl idea… 🙂

  11. Michael says:

    MLD,

    I saw the “Raisins” comment on Facebook yesterday and laughed all afternoon.

  12. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    I never understood why Super Sunday is an either or propsition when it comes to going to fellowship. Ours is usually on saturday so its no issue for me but for those who gather on sunday the game starts at 3:30 so no reason to miss one over the other

  13. Here’s my take on GoDaddy,
    Actually I heard it took 45 takes. Chalk one up for the homely guys.

    Here’s my take on Alex,
    If you engage Alex just validate his quest for justice and avoid taking personal offense and avoid escalating. In other words just let him have the last word.

    Here’s my take on N T Wright,
    He is the greatest gift to serious Bible teaching Christians of this generation. I will die digesting and dispersing his stuff.

    Here’s my take on “Where’s God?”
    Heard and later preached a sermon on Judges 19, the unnamed concubine and the Levite. The text is about a levite and his concubine traveling home and looking for Hebrew hostility only to find a repeat of the story of Lot at Sodom. The Levite gets spared but the concubine is abused and raped by a violent mob all night in his place, in other words God does not show up for her. What ensues in the last chapters of Judges is too horrible to imagine and more victims are slaughtered. The unnamed concubine is a metaphor for all who die violently without rescue. What can we say?

    I heard a black woman preacher attempt answer the thing. She said, “The real story is where is God? I thank God the story of the woman is not the ONLY story in the Bible and I thank God it is not the LAST story.” And then she goes on to preach the LAST STORY with incomparable passion.

    Here’s my take on all the people who skipped church for the Super Bowl:
    It wasn’t that long ago that I had the smallest crowd in the HISTORY of my church. That was Christmas Day for the celebration of the Birth of Jesus. Not only that…but if you challenged it all you got for your trouble was violent anger. Pretty funny. Thank God the Super Bowl isn’t played in the morning.

    Here’s my take on Phoenix Preacher
    It is funny to me that it is often a kind of critique on culture at the same time it is a fixture in my life because of the changing culture I inhabit. In other words the blog is a bit uncomfortable in its own skin. But we who come here…even if only casually… would not feel good if it were not here.

  14. Sheesh… correction… The Levite and his concubine were looking for HOSPITALITY and found hostility… oh well

  15. Michael says:

    BD,

    You would make a good therapist…while I’m pretty comfortable in my own skin….not so much here.

    I owe you a great debt for forcing me to read Wright to refute him. 🙂
    One one hand it didn’t work out real well for me, on the other, I’ve been greatly schooled.
    I concur that he is this generations gift from God in the teaching area…

  16. from this corner says:

    the three superbowl ads worth remembering:
    wash your brains out with the VW Beetle ad, the Dodge tribute to the farmers ad and, gulp, the Budweiser Clydesdale colt ad

    and then rebuild your brains with the Phxp

    just sayin … 🙄

  17. You don’t know how relieved I was to see “Things I Think” this morning. Good thoughts, and I always appreciate it.

    Any movement, denomination, church…whatever, only has so much capacity for growth. Its just natural. The more centralized structure, the less room for growth. This isn’t as much about a group like CC losing their way (whether they have or not), this is just the normal life cycle of any group. Growth and waning. It will happen to all until someone figures out how to bottle the Holy Spirit.

    Your #4 is right. It isn’t easy, or pleasant, but it is correct. I wish God was always easy and pleasant but He is not. And he knows better than I do.

    My church service last night was about suicide. When I saw the topic, I cringed. Didn’t want to go. SuperBowl sounded much more appealing. However, the Gospel broke out. It’s been a long time since I felt like shouting just from hearing the truth of the Gospel. I didn’t. We are respectable Baptists 🙂

  18. Sarah says:

    BD: “t is funny to me that it is often a kind of critique on culture at the same time it is a fixture in my life because of the changing culture I inhabit. In other words the blog is a bit uncomfortable in its own skin. But we who come here…even if only casually… would not feel good if it were not here.” Amen!

    Josh…wow, I think I want to hear that service!

    Teaching through Exodus with the boys today. Nope, God is not easy and pleasant and the boys are learning that sometimes we have to say we don’t know the answer…and that’s okay.

    By the way…the little girl who passed away…for what it is worth, the family is surrounded by a wonderful faith community. They live one community over from us, but the mom was a dance teacher in our little town. Many of our friends are friends and once again our little town is rising to the challenge. It makes me glad to live in a small town.

  19. filbertz says:

    The go-daddy commercial is the gospel in a nutshell…we’ve been kissed by God. I imagine the angels couldn’t take enough showers… 😉

    I, too, was delighted to find a thingsIthink thread this morning…not so glad I have to do parent-teacher conferences all day.

  20. papiaslogia says:

    I check PP most every day, and am always happy to read another Michael post.

    I just usually don’t have much of any value to add, due to time contraints and ….just not having anything to say.

    Missed the first half of the Super Bowl due to church, but it was worth it. 🙂

  21. Nonnie says:

    Really glad to see you all back today!

  22. Kevin H says:

    Adding my voice to the chrous of those who were glad to see this thread today. Thinking of all of those who have chosen to leave recently or even not so recently. Hoping they may choose to return and contribute again someday as they see fit. Regardless of who stays and who goes, praying for wisdom for Michael as he struggles through what to do with this place and how to do it. I’ve not been around nearly as long as many others, but this place has seemed to have always been a peculiar collection of characters forming a borderline dysfunctional family. And fully ordained by God.

  23. erunner says:

    #6…… I didn’t care for the go daddy commercial. They went for the creepy factor and I imagine they’re pleased with themselves. I also thought of all of the not so hot looking men who saw that and wondered how that made them feel. I count myself among them and all of us not born with good looks should consider that ad a slap in the face.

    This blog has been a part of my life for a long time and I’m glad it’s still around and look to see how the future treats all who participate here. My hope is some who have moved on would consider returning as they added so much to this community.

    God bless you Michael.

  24. from this corner says:

    #3. “The most difficult persons in your life are often the ones whom God is using the most to teach you about Himself” perhaps, but it’s more likely that He is using them to teach you more about yourself … i’m thinking of a verse that says something about His kingdom is not of this world … and, usually, those difficult people aren’t of His kingdom … why do we keep trying to make God the author of the troubles of this world, when in His wisdom He has seen fit to establish a chain of command that has turned it – the planet – over to the control of some evil fallen angel band?

    and that’s all i’ve got to say about that!

  25. from this corner says:

    “We need all the voices here…even the contrary ones.”

    now don’t you wish that you hadn’t said that? 😎

  26. Lutheran says:

    ‘When in His wisdom He has seen fit to establish a chain of command that has turned it – the planet – over to the control of some evil fallen angel band?’

    Really?

    That’s a pretty lopsided view of things.

    Here’s what I believe:

    “None of us is qualified to give detailed explanations about divine use of evil, but we are all qualified to entrust ourselves into God’s wise hands, know that he governs us and all things in perfect wisdom and love, and proclaim with joy that in Christ we remain safe and secure despite the temptations and disappointments that are a part of our earthly pilgrimage.

    “Satan does not have free rein on earth or anywhere else; God limits and governs wickedness in ways that are very real although beyond our full comprehension. We are humbled and heartened with this truth.

    While it brings us great pain and heartache to observe the results of sin and suffering in the lives of so many others, God calls us back to the cross of Christ and to learn again that appearances are so often deceiving and nothing is out of God’s control. When all is said and done, after the final chapter of world history is concluded, perfect justice and love will be understood and experienced. Meanwhile we indeed walk by faith, not by sight.”

    http://www.wels.net/what-we-believe/questions-answers/hell/satan

  27. Lutheran says:

    He has seen fit to establish a chain of command that has turned it – the planet – over to the control of some evil fallen angel band?

    Thankfully, there’s more to say.

    Your view is pretty lopsided.

    Here’s what I believe Scripture teaches.

    “A balanced study of all that the Bible reveals about God’s permitting of evil to be and remain in this world reveals that God sometimes prevents sin from happening and sometimes allows sin to happen.

    “If he does allow sin to happen, he limits it and its impact on people and always uses it to serve his ultimate purposes. The same is true regarding Satan and his efforts to do evil. It is God’s wise desire not to annihilate Satan or remove evil completely from the world at this time.

    “None of us is qualified to give detailed explanations about divine use of evil, but we are all qualified to entrust ourselves into God’s wise hands, know that he governs us and all things in perfect wisdom and love, and proclaim with joy that in Christ we remain safe and secure despite the temptations and disappointments that are a part of our earthly pilgrimage.

    “Satan does not have free rein on earth or anywhere else; God limits and governs wickedness in ways that are very real although beyond our full comprehension. We are humbled and heartened with this truth. While it brings us great pain and heartache to observe the results of sin and suffering in the lives of so many others, God calls us back to the cross of Christ and to learn again that appearances are so often deceiving and nothing is out of God’s control. When all is said and done, after the final chapter of world history is concluded, perfect justice and love will be understood and experienced. Meanwhile we indeed walk by faith, not by sight.”

    http://www.wels.net/what-we-believe/questions-answers/hell/satan

  28. Lutheran says:

    when in His wisdom He has seen fit to establish a chain of command that has turned it

    There’s more to say. You’re not telling the whole story. Your view is lopsided.

    Here’s what I believe God’s Word says about the topic..

    “A balanced study of all that the Bible reveals about God’s permitting of evil to be and remain in this world reveals that God sometimes prevents sin from happening and sometimes allows sin to happen. If he does allow sin to happen, he limits it and its impact on people and always uses it to serve his ultimate purposes. The same is true regarding Satan and his efforts to do evil. It is God’s wise desire not to annihilate Satan or remove evil completely from the world at this time.

    “None of us is qualified to give detailed explanations about divine use of evil, but we are all qualified to entrust ourselves into God’s wise hands, know that he governs us and all things in perfect wisdom and love, and proclaim with joy that in Christ we remain safe and secure despite the temptations and disappointments that are a part of our earthly pilgrimage.

    “Satan does not have free rein on earth or anywhere else; God limits and governs wickedness in ways that are very real although beyond our full comprehension. We are humbled and heartened with this truth.

    “While it brings us great pain and heartache to observe the results of sin and suffering in the lives of so many others, God calls us back to the cross of Christ and to learn again that appearances are so often deceiving and nothing is out of God’s control. When all is said and done, after the final chapter of world history is concluded, perfect justice and love will be understood and experienced. Meanwhile we indeed walk by faith, not by sight.”

    http://www.wels.net/what-we-believe/questions-answers/hell/satan

  29. Lutheran says:

    Test

  30. Lutheran says:

    hen in His wisdom He has seen fit to establish a chain of command that has turned it – the planet – over to the control of some evil fallen angel band?

    That’s a very lopsided view of things. Unbalanced. Here’s what I think Scripture says.

    “A balanced study of all that the Bible reveals about God’s permitting of evil to be and remain in this world reveals that God sometimes prevents sin from happening and sometimes allows sin to happen. If he does allow sin to happen, he limits it and its impact on people and always uses it to serve his ultimate purposes. The same is true regarding Satan and his efforts to do evil. It is God’s wise desire not to annihilate Satan or remove evil completely from the world at this time.

    None of us is qualified to give detailed explanations about divine use of evil, but we are all qualified to entrust ourselves into God’s wise hands, know that he governs us and all things in perfect wisdom and love, and proclaim with joy that in Christ we remain safe and secure despite the temptations and disappointments that are a part of our earthly pilgrimage. Satan does not have free rein on earth or anywhere else; God limits and governs wickedness in ways that are very real although beyond our full comprehension. We are humbled and heartened with this truth. While it brings us great pain and heartache to observe the results of sin and suffering in the lives of so many others, God calls us back to the cross of Christ and to learn again that appearances are so often deceiving and nothing is out of God’s control. When all is said and done, after the final chapter of world history is concluded, perfect justice and love will be understood and experienced. Meanwhile we indeed walk by faith, not by sight.”

    http://www.wels.net/what-we-believe/questions-answers/hell/satan

  31. Lutheran says:

    A balanced study of all that the Bible reveals about God’s permitting of evil to be and remain in this world reveals that God sometimes prevents sin from happening and sometimes allows sin to happen. If he does allow sin to happen, he limits it and its impact on people and always uses it to serve his ultimate purposes. The same is true regarding Satan and his efforts to do evil. It is God’s wise desire not to annihilate Satan or remove evil completely from the world at this time.

    None of us is qualified to give detailed explanations about divine use of evil, but we are all qualified to entrust ourselves into God’s wise hands, know that he governs us and all things in perfect wisdom and love, and proclaim with joy that in Christ we remain safe and secure despite the temptations and disappointments that are a part of our earthly pilgrimage. Satan does not have free rein on earth or anywhere else; God limits and governs wickedness in ways that are very real although beyond our full comprehension. We are humbled and heartened with this truth. While it brings us great pain and heartache to observe the results of sin and suffering in the lives of so many others, God calls us back to the cross of Christ and to learn again that appearances are so often deceiving and nothing is out of God’s control. When all is said and done, after the final chapter of world history is concluded, perfect justice and love will be understood and experienced. Meanwhile we indeed walk by faith, not by sight.

  32. Lutheran says:

    My #27 is in response to #24. That’s a very lopsided view of Satan’s power.

    Here’s the link to my quote

    http://www.wels.net/what-we-believe/questions-answers/hell/satan

  33. Good morning, PhxP. I’m also glad we’re still here. I don’t have the luxury of coming around as much as I used to, but like an old friend, love to know we’re still here.

    Saw an ad for Dricoll’s Real Marriage Tour coming to Scottsdale. I know at least one person who won’t be going.

    Off to work. Y’all have a great day!

  34. Hey Captain,
    “I know at least one person who won’t be going.”

    I assume that one person is you – does that mean that Mrs. Captain IS going? 🙂

  35. papiaslogia says:

    “I’m completely stuck on the point I mentioned last week about the fact that Paul’s epistles are addressed to entire churches and not to individual leaders who would then pass it on to the pews.”

    And not only that – but that churches were instructed to read letters addressed to other churches as well.
    “And when this letter has been read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans; and see that you also read the letter from Laodicea.” Colosians 4:16
    This tells me that there was a “sharing” of sorts, not only among individuals inside a church, but amongst churches as well. Pauls letters were not just addressed to the church to whom he wrote the letter – he tells the church to read the letter he sent to the other church, and to read his letter in the other church as well.

    This also dispels the notion that these epsitles were only addressed to the church to whom Paul was addressing.

    It is a beautiful way in which not only does every person benefit from the word, but every church gets the same message as well.

  36. from this corner says:

    #27, the response to #24 … an interesting phenomena is that a response can completely miss the point and still be full of truth … yes, amen, all that is occurring on this earth is completely unfolding according to a mysterious and redemptive plan of God … Isaiah 46:8-10 …

  37. from this corner says:

    #32 … makes me think … good point to ponder today

  38. Reuben says:

    Paul saw a universal “Body of Christ”.

    We don’t.

  39. Paul hoped for a universal body of Christ, but SAW and exposed many divisions… even at the Lord’s Table.

  40. I see a Universal Body of Christ.

  41. papiaslogia says:

    “Paul saw a universal “Body of Christ”. We don’t.”

    Reuben, I disagree, but that doesn’t prove your point. I hope that you don’t see every disagreement as proof of a lack of unity?

    I would like to think of the Body like attending a large family reunion at a big park. Some people will be “over here” and some will be “over there”. Some folks will walk around and and visit with others and catch up, while others will keep to themselves and not want to go “over there”.

    But its still one big family, whether people know it or not.

  42. I see the church as universal with varying segments. It’s like the USA, one universal nation made up of 50 segments (57 if you use Obama’s count 😉 )

  43. London says:

    Perhaps Paul saw a universal church. But keep in mind how small that “universe” was geographically than ours today is.
    He traveled around a very small part of the world compared to where we are able to go now.
    We can cover his journeys in a few days compared to the months it took him.
    We can compared notes with millions of people across the world instantly on line.
    He wrote letters, or had some one write them, that were hand carried from place to place.
    Then there were a few thousand Christians. Now there are millions erc.
    Comparing and being disappointed is pointless. It’s like having an apple and complaining that its not more like an orange.

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