Monday, December 29, 2008

Is the Lord Christ Central?

For Christmas- My parents gave me a daily devotional book by Martin Lloyd- Jones. The first time I heard about this man- I was sitting at my first Passion conference in Nashville, TN. I was listening to John Piper speak and he was preaching about "Joy." He mentioned a quote from MLJ from the book- "Spiritual Depression." The words were so true and so biblical- I immediately wrote his name down and and searched and searched for this book. Eventually I came to find- his name was rare and I had to order it offline- and so I did, along with many other books. I have enjoyed reading MLJ over the past few years. He speaks of great TRUTH and Doctrine. I have learned so much from his teachings. And so, when i was skimming through this new devotional- one in particular caught my eye. It made me really step back and think how often is Christ the center of my life? and how much I TRULY need Him as my savior. I write this in hopes that whoever may stumble upon this- will see the light of Christ, his Love, and the spiritual encouragement your heart desires, so that we may become a better example in the light of Christ's name.

From "Walking with God- Day by Day"
June 4

Is the Lord Christ Central?

"In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace." Ephesians 1:7

If the Lord Jesus Christ is not crucial, central, vital, and occupying the very center of our meditation and our living, thinking, and praying, we have no right to look for revival. And yet, if you go and talk to many people, even in the church, about religion, you will find that they will talk to you at great length without ever mentioning the Lord Jesus Christ. I am never tired of putting it like this, because it is something that I am so familiar with in my experience as a pastor. People come and talk to me about these things, and I put my question to them. I say, "If you had to die tonight, how would you feel?"
"oh," they say, "I believe in God."
"All right," I reply, "what will you say when you stand in the presence of God? What are you relying on?"
"Well," they say, "I have always tried to live a good life, I have done my best, I have tried to do good."
"But nevertheless you have sinned, haven't you?"
"Oh yes, i have sinned."
"So," I ask, "what do you do about your sin?" What will you say to God, in the presence of God, about your sin?"
"Well," they say, "I believe God is a God of Love."
"And how does that help you?"
"Well," they say, "I believe that if I acknowledge my sin to God and then ask Him to forgive me, He does forgive me, and I am relying upon that."
The point I am trying to make is that they do not even mention the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. They seem to think they can go to God directly without the Lord Jesus Christ at all. There is a great deal of so-called Christianity that is quite Christ-less.

*A Thought to Ponder*
If the Lord Jesus Christ is not occupying the very center of our meditation, we have no right to look for revival.

Monday, December 8, 2008

LA and All Her Crazy Charms.

So I know it's been about a month since I've posted anything- but here is a recap of what's been going on...

Took a trip down to Chinatown.

On election night we went to see a Broadway show.... Spring Awakening. It was... well... Interesting. I thought it had to do something w/ Lyle Lovitt- but far from it. This is our reenactment of the poster. Exciting isn't?

During the intermission of the show... we heard cheers and claps.... can you guess why?? Needless to say... I hope he proves this painting to be true.

Later in the week we went up to the Griffith Park Observatory... One of the coolest views of LA you'll find around here.

They also have the Planetarium there too... It's rather fascinating...
Inside they have an awesome pendulum !

Downstairs they have a very educational area. There you can learn all about the planets.
Even how much you'd weigh there. I'd like to live on Mercury. k, thanks. :-}

That following weekend Sam and I went all over LA. Even attempted to climb up to the Hollywood sign. As evidence that it was not successful, I have no photos to show other than the aftermath of me sliding down a HUGE rock after losing my footing. I was bruised from tummy down to my ankles. It was fun.

Later I discovered a massive splinter in my hand. The only way I could describe it to you- is after I pulled it out- it looked like the tip of a sharpened #2 pencil.
I have never been so grateful for my thumb until that day.

Later, after the looong hike, we treated ourselves to the famous BIG TEXAS DONUT.
It was bigger than our hands.

Later we went to Malibu to enjoy some cold water.
It was nice considering how dirty we were at that point.

And then the following weekend, we had my sister's baby shower. But before I could get there- some fires broke out down near my house, and the wind carried the smoke and spread west towards Simi Valley. It was a spectacular destruction, and I'd like to say that I'd rather be stuck in a hurricane or tornado any day than deal with this nasty smoke.
My car smelt like a campfire for several weeks.

I then finally made it to my sister's
and we headed over to her friend's house for the shower.

Later- driving home- I got some pictures of the sunset.
You wouldn't even know there were mountains behind there.

We procrastinated at Halloween, so decided to carve pumpkins in mid November...
and my cat, Pumpkin, wanted to take part.
Curiosity did not kill my cat.
{note: this was not a set up- & no animal was harmed.}

Then it was Thanksgiving. Some old friends from college just moved out here to LA... they live about 5 minutes away from me and it has been amazingly wonderful to have them near. Non of us had anywhere to go and not going home for Thanksgiving, so we all crowded into my tiny little apartment and made some yummy food.
I made my first successful turkey!

And this was quite horrifying.

but the food was amazing and the time together was priceless.

From the words of Kirk, "Anna- thank you for making Thanksgiving feel like home."



Desperately, helplessly, longingly, I cried;
Quietly, patiently, lovingly, God replied.
I pled and I wept for a clue to my fate...
and the Master so gently said,"Wait."

"Wait? you say wait?" my indignant reply.
"Lord, I need answers, I need to know why!"
Is your hand shortened? Or have you not heard?
By faith I have asked, and I'm claiming your Word.

My future and all to which I relate
hangs in the balance and you tell me to Wait?"
I'm needing a 'yes', a go-ahead sign.
Or even a 'no,' to which I'll resign.

You promised, dear Lord, that if we believe,
We need but to ask, and we shall receive.
Lord, I've been asking, and this is my cry:
I'm weary of asking! I need a reply.

Then quietly, softly, I learned of my fate
as my Master replied again, "Wait."
So I slumped in my chair, defeated and taut,
and grumbled to God, "So, I'm waiting...for what?"

He seemed then to kneel, and His eyes met with mine...
and He tenderly said, "I could give you a sign.
I could shake the heavens and darken the sun.
I could raise the dead and cause mountains to run.

I could give all you seek and pleased you would be.
You'd have what you want, but you wouldn't know Me.
You'd not know the depth of My love for each saint.
You'd not know the power that I give to the faint.

You'd not learn to see through clouds of despair;
you'd not learn to trust just by knowing I'm there.
You'd not know the joy of resting in Me
when darkness and silence are all you can see.

You'd never experience the fullness of love
when the peace of My spirit descends like a dove.
You would know that I give, and I save, for a start,
But you'd not know the depth of the beat of My heart.

The glow of My comfort late into the night,
the faith that I give when you walk without sight.
The depth that's beyond getting just what you ask
From an infinite God who makes what you have last.

by Russell Kelfer

Monday, November 3, 2008

Apple Orchards!

So the day after Haloween- My sister and Jon asked me to come along on an Apple Pickin' good time w/ a few of their friends from church... I decided to go- b/c I was totally in the Fall Spirit... and that day... kicked my Fall Spirit up a notch! Here are a few pics from the amazing day! The kids were adorable.... Check out more HERE.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

This is Halloween!

So I work with a bunch of weirds... But they're a lot of fun. Here are a few pictures from work... but you can check out more HERE.

I decided to go as the Morton Salt Girl.

My roomie went as the Sock Monkey- Which fit her perfect!

And my old roomie went as a Crazy Cat lady.

My other friend didn't go as anything... lame! But she's still just as beautiful... To me she looked like a Mexican Doll! bahah... hey- no one really has to know right?

Honestly- All we did was just eat and go up to my favorite spot near my sister's house. We decided that would be the safest... and it was fun. Especially when you get to the restaurant and they sit you down in the furthest booth-- away from any human contact, and then eventually sit more people down w/ kids, make the kids cry b/c the "human" monkey scared them, have a mixture of characters and a camera...
Oh Good Times.

It's been a while since I've laughed that hard...