Sunday, July 28, 2013

loving people to heaven or hell

there is a great difference
loving people into the kingdom
loving people into hell
if we only accept
without speaking truth
dealing with the sin
without enlightening
we are only enabling
speaking emptiness
loving with little redemptive hope
only enabling
speaking emptiness
feeding the very cancer that damns a soul
there is no genuine love in that
take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness
expose them
speak the one truth in love
love people
love people into the kingdom
love people
 by living and giving the gospel
do not deceive with empty words
the wrath of God comes
upon the sons of disobedience
so speak
so live
be light
love them into the kingdom
and not into hell

Ephesians 5:11

Friday, July 26, 2013

seeing red

Since movie admission prices have gotten so high, I am very particular about what movies I go to see.  I used to go all the time.  Now I pretty much do a little Internet research before going before I make the mistake of emptying my pocket for something mediocre.

I don't mind waiting a month or two to see most movies on my home TV via Redbox or Netflix.  There are some movies that are big screen movies.  I'm still waiting to see the next installment of The Hobbit on the big screen.  Some movies should be seen on the big screen.  Let's face it, most movies today are just as good on the little screen as the big screen. Most movies I don't mind waiting to see.

We're celebrating Gina's 50th birthday this week.  Gina worked last weekend so she could take a couple of days off for herself this weekend.  She didn't have to wake up early this morning, so we ended up hitting a late show last night.  Gina likes action movies as much as I do.  She likes comedies as much as I do too.  I knew when I saw Red 2 out, that it would be a great date night movie for the two of us.  We went and neither of us were disappointed.

I really enjoyed Red 2.  This franchise is a cut above Expendables franchise because of the writing.  Both these movie franchises are comprised of star studded casts (older established actors) with lots of action, but the Expendables movies are one dimensional.  They are enjoyable to watch, but the Red franchise offers more.

Red 2 is is just as much of a thrilling roller-coaster ride as the most recent James Bond movie Skyfall.  You love all the characters, you don't know what's going to  happen next.  It's just a great ride.  I love the characters, the banter, the story...everything.

One thing though that I particularly enjoy  about the Red movies ~ is the generosity.  Even though this is a Bruce Willis vehicle, Bruce is an extremely generous actor.  In Red, Bruce lets John Malkovich steal the show.  In Red 2, both John Malkovich and Anthony Hopkins really shine.  I can't help but think that Hopkins had the time of his life playing Edward Baily. Though Bruce is a funny guy, he doesn't seem to mind playing the straight man.  Everybody shines in this movie, everybody gets to play and I like that.

There is nothing formulaic about Red 2.  Like it's predecessor, it's unpredictable.  As much as I enjoyed the first movie,  I like this one better.  It was money well spent.  It was good to know that Gina enjoyed it as much as I did.  Since we don't go to the movies like we used to, I really try to make sure it's a movie she'll enjoy too.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


I've come across many Christians who suffer from needless wounds because they do not do battle.  In Ephesians 6 we are instructed to put on the full armor of God.  This order is intended for us to stand our ground against the enemy.  We as Christians WILL engage in spiritual combat.  Warfare is unavoidable.  Warfare is part of our daily life.  We cannot have a pacifist mindset or we will suffer wounds.  Defeat can come to us if we do not prepare ourselves for battle.

If we are to put on the full armor of God, we must not only put it on, we must know how to USE IT! Wearing it just isn't enough.  We must learn to walk in it, live in it, and do battle in it. We will be of little service if we merely walk around with a sword and not learn to wield it.  If we carry a weapon without knowing it, it's just for show.

Faith is our defense and faith can help us move through the battle without sustaining injury.  We can use our shield for personal protection.  We can use our shields collectively.  The shield of faith is not to just hang on a wall to show to our friends.  Our faith is our survival.  Our faith sustains us from enemy attacks as we each move through life.  We must each learn to walk with shield in front of us to absorb the blows.

If we do not put on the FULL armor of God, the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, and our feet are not ready - we are leaving soft spots open, unguarded, unshielded opportunities for the enemy.

"Firstly, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.  Stand firm then, with the belt of truth bucked around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  Take the helmet of salvation and the word of the Spirit, which is the word of God.  And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.  With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord's people."
-Ephesians 6:10-18

"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
-2 Timothy 2:15

And that from a child you have know the holy scriptures, which are able to make you wise to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.  That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished to all good works.
-2 Timothy 3:15-17

Indeed, we live as human beings, but we do not wage war according to human standards; for the weapons of our warfare are not merely human, but they have divine powers to destroy strongholds.  We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle raised up against the knowledge of God, and we take every thought captive to Christ.
-2 Corinthians 10:3-5

So prepare your shields, both large and small, and march out for battle! Harness the horses, mount the steeds! Take your positions with helmets on! Polish your spears, put on your armor!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

sixth to seventh

from sixth
to seventh
stepping from an innocent place
into a harsher place
from sixth
to seventh
from sixth
to racial unrest
as a boy i knew nothing
nothing about the hate
between races
between skin
nothing about a martyred king
nothing about that dream
from sixth
to seventh
i stepped over
walked down the halls
halls of bitterness
and hate
i was hated
i was hated for the color
the color
God gave me
i was slapped
chastised chased
rundown beaten
because i was not like them
i turned the other cheek
and never returned hate
for hate
beyond my persecution
i tried to show
that i didn't look down
didn't look angry
didn't disrespect
i didn't
even when i was cornered
sometimes forced to fight
i didn't show hate
didn't hate
didn't have hate to give
children left home
every morning
road the bus
dropped off
public school
where adults seemed absent too often
looking the other way
not their fight
not their trouble
left the children
to deal with it
the consequences
of a nation's past sin
to integration
we knew nothing of it
strange words
that soon took a brutal meaning
we knew nothing
of any race
any man's struggle
just wanted to get through
get along
there in the halls
there in the bathrooms
there in the locker rooms

behind the gym
trouble always seemed to lurk
before during after class
the children
black and white were left
left alone
left to deal with the consequences
i realized it
even then
those other children
those children
different from me
who hated me
were taught by their parents
to hate
 to hate like their parents hated
the grievances frustration
the anger of old sins
ever unforgiven
ever unforgiving
passed it down
to their children
mantle of misery
to be born again in them
 to pick up the torch
lash out
ever lashing out
 ever lashing thrashing out
at whatever was is white
seeing only through back eyes
 and not through the blood
this wasn't the martyred king's dream
countless roads since named for him
countless highways and byways
his good name
trodden under so many feet
decades decades
marching in his name
a road named well
but a road seldom walked
his good words
trampled under rioting feet

his good dream
not by the color of skin
but by
content of character
forgotten or ignored
listen to him
repent forgive
lay down that nightmare
lay down that yoke

don't stir those ashes
don't kindle those flames
put out that fire
that consumes the soul
lay down that nightmare
wake to the dream
walk that road
listen to him
that old preacher of yours
that dear wise man
calmly calling
repent forgive
repent forgive
not through black eyes
only through the blood
of Jesus Christ

Colossians 3:12-14

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

up up

there is a reason
you were born
born here
born where you are
who you are
fearfully wonderfully
uniquely specifically made
with divine intent
we remind each other to look up
focus up
instead of around
which is the world
to focus up
to live up
instead of down
to be in
but not of
to be who we were made to be
the more we look up
the more we pursue up
the more we'll become
who we were made to be
being and becoming
who he made us to be
looking to the kingdom
instead of this old place


Saturday, July 6, 2013

goodnight girls

kelsey is the first to go down
sometimes mother
sometimes katie
sometimes me
someone will help her go to sleep
always with a prayer
like most little girls
wants a little comfort and company first
she'll ask for a story
loves to be tickled
her good-nights
a little prolonged
always be accompanied
always with a hug

i think
she likes hugs
more than kisses

at seventeen
katie is old enough to put herself to bed
she'll stay up a little later
to read a little longer
she'll come down later in the evening
to wish me good-night
since she was little
always desired 'good-nights'
has always loved kisses

i think
she likes kisses
a little more than hugs

my girls
so different
so unique
so precious

hugs and kisses
kisses and hugs

Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.
-Matthew 18:10