Are you satisfied with Jesus?

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Last night our youngest son, Drew, put a post on Twitter concerning a YouTube video he claimed as ‘incredible’.  It is a small portion John Piper’s sermon from June 21, 2009, The Tragic Cost of Her Cavernous Thirst.  His message was taken from John 4: 16-26, the conversation between Jesus and woman at the well.  I loved and was challenged by this portion of the sermon:

Learning About Jesus—And Ourselves

Here we are learning about Jesus, and we are learning about ourselves. He is compassionate and aggressive and surgical and relentless in his love. He knows all your past and all your present. Nothing is hidden from him. One person in the universe knows you completely—the most important person. He is indeed a prophet, and more than a prophet, as we will see more clearly next week.

And you are meeting yourself in this woman. One of the evidences that we have not drunk the water of life, or that we are quenching its spring, is that we are unstable like this woman, and always moving from one thing to the next seeking to fill the void that Jesus promises to fill.

I am amazed that Christ, the most important person in the universe and the person who knows me completely; he knows everything about me, yet he loves me….there is no greater love than this!

Enjoy the video that Drew placed on Twitter….

Drew turns 21 today…

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Today our youngest son, Drew, turned 21.  As I thought about this special day, I was reminded of God’s kindness in Drew’s life the love I have for him. Some of my thoughts are as follows….

  • Drew has been saved from his sin, is an adopted child of God and will live an eternity enjoying the glory of God…
  • Drew knows what he has been saved from…
  • Drew is actively fighting sin…desiring to abhor what is evil and cling to what is good
  • Drew knows his salvation was paid for through the horrific death of Christ on the cross…
  • Drew witnessed the mercy of God first-hand in the redemptive restoration of his family…
  • Drew loves his church…
  • Drew demonstrates his love for his family…
  • Drew loves to laugh and make others laugh…
  • Drew is a good friend…
  • Drew is a good listener…
  • Drew has been gifted by God as a leader…
  • Drew desires to be married one day and is trusting God’s guidance…

As I listed my thoughts, it became more and more evident that God’s gentle and loving hand is on Drew’s life.  As his father, I have one desire for him; that he would find complete and lasting satisfaction in Christ.  That all lesser pleasures would pale in comparison to Christ and him crucified.

Drew…If you read this, please know it was written from the heart of a man whose sin has caused you pain but is trusting in and pointing you to the One who will never leave you or forsake you…I love you…Dad

Remaining desperate…

Good Advice versus Good News

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Today I was watching John Piper explain why he invited Doug Wilson to come and speak at the Desiring God Conference in September.  In the video he discussed a story Doug told to explain the difference in Good Advice and Good News….I loved it and was edified…enjoy…

Never a stone he gave….

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I spent the morning with my step-father last week; it will be a morning I will hopefully never forget.  As we sat and talked and we served and cared for one another, I thought of these verses in Matthew 7

9 Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!

My step-father came into my life, or should I say into my mother’s and my life, when I was three.  As I was sitting there with him, God was kind to help me see the correlation between my step-father, who is sinful and dependent on God’s grace, and God the Father.  If my step-father, who loved and cared for me, never giving me the proverbial stone, how much more will God give me if I ask?  If my step-father, who took the day off last week to spend time with me, how much more does the One who crushed his Son with my sin desire to be with me.

Lord, I thank you for placing my step-dad in my life.  It is without a doubt a direct reflection of your grace and mercy in my life; grace and mercy that was and is only possible because of what transpired on the cross.  The great exchange that occurred, Christ taking what I deserved and me receiving what Christ deserved, is truly amazing grace.  Thank you for last week and thank you the gift of the man you sent my way at three.  Grant him many more years to enjoy his grandchildren as they honor him with their love; a love born out of your Sovereign grace.   And Father, grant me the faith to believe what Matthew 7: 9-11 says about you and may my time with you reflect that belief.  May my desires from you be that of becoming transformed into the image of your Son…at whatever the cost.

In the name of Jesus I pray…Amen

Remaining desperate…

Quotes in the moleskine…

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I have a small moleskine journal that I keep with me at all times to write down quotes that I come across in my reading.  There are occasions that I will take it out to read, share a portion of it on twitter or just to meditate on it as a means of God’s grace.  I would like to share one that has served me in the past as well as tonight before I call it a day.  It has been a wonderful Father’s Day and I have felt God’s pleasure through my family.

Always Accepted for Christ’s Sake

” There is nothing in us or done by us at any stage of our earthly development, because of which we are acceptable to God.  We must always be accepted for Christ’s sake, or we cannot ever be accepted at all.  This is not true of us only when we believe.  It is just as true after we have believed.  It will continue to be true as long as we live.  Our need for Christ does not cease with our believing; nor does the nature of our relationship to him or God through him ever alter, no matter what our attainment in Christian graces or our achievements in behavior may be.  It is always on his blood and righteousness alone that we can rest. ”

B.B. Warfield

I love this quote and the inference of desperateness on behalf of Warfield.  May we all walk in the knowledge of our need for him…every moment of every day.

Remaining desperate..

Longings After God

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Well, being out of town is ending and I am looking so forward to being back at home tomorrow with my wife. Before calling it a day, I opened up the book of Puritan prayers, Valley of Vision.  I was greatly moved by one of my favorites, Longings After God, a great reminder of my desperate need for Christ.

Longings after God

My dear Lord, I can but tell Thee that Thou knowest I long for nothing but Thyself, nothing but holiness, nothing but union with Thy will. Thou hast given me these desires, and thou alone canst give me the thing desired. My soul longs for communion with Thee, for mortification of indwelling corruption, especially spiritual pride. How precious it is to have a tender sense and clear apprehension of the mystery of godliness, of true holiness! What a blessedness to be like Thee as much as it is possible for a creature to be like its creator! Lord, give me more of Thy likeness; enlarge my soul to contain fullness of holiness; engage me to live more for Thee. Help me to be less pleased with my spiritual experiences, and when I feel at ease after sweet communings, teach me it is far too little I know and do. Blessed Lord, let me climb up near to Thee, and love, and long, and plead, and wrestle with Thee, and pant for deliverance from the body of sin, for my heart is wandering and lifeless, and my soul mourns to think it should ever lose sight of its beloved. Wrap my life in divine love, and keep me ever desiring Thee, always humble and resigned to Thy will, more fixed on Thyself, that I may be more fitted for doing and-suffering.

Remaining desperate…

Live in the light…escaping anonymity

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One of the most challenging articles I have read on escaping anonymity was an article by Tim Challies, Behind Closed Doors.  Included in the article was the following:

“Admiral Lord Nelson once remarked that “every sailor is a bachelor when beyond Gibraltar.” This was a statement about anonymity, a rare concept even just a few short generations ago. Nelson knew that once his sailors moved beyond the bounds of the British Empire, beyond society’s systems of morality and accountability, they underwent a transformation. Every man became a bachelor and sought only and always his own pleasure. Those who have read biographies of John Newton will see there a vivid portrayal of a man who was a gentleman at home but who was vulgar and abusive while away. Given only a measure of anonymity he became a whole new man.”

I agree with John Newton that I know two things….I am a great sinner and Christ is a great Savior.  As I am traveling this week…..out of town, around strangers, in a hotel room with cable television and the computer that I am writing this post, I am confronted with heart-revealing questions….

  • What is your treasure?
  • Are you going to settle for sinful, fleshly pleasures instead of the pleasures of God?
  • Are you going to find enjoyment in the very things that nailed Christ on the cross?
  • Are you going to dishonor your wife….an incredible gift from God?
  • Do you realize you are a debtor of mercy?

I thought of an article that John Piper wrote that I carry with me at all times….here is a portion of it…

Who Understands the Full Power of Sin?

“No, you don’t need to experiment with particular sins in order to know the power of sin in your life. Think of it this way. Someone says: How can you really know the power of the temptation to lust – say to look at Internet nudity – if you’ve never given in and experienced it? Let me give an answer in a parable. There are three men – women, you supply the necessary changes to make the parable fit your situation – and each of the three stands beside a pit of lewdness and sin. Three ropes extend out of the pit, one bound around each man’s waist. The strength of this narrow cord is one-hundred-pound test.

The first man begins to be pulled into the pit that looks exciting, but that he knows is deadly. Five pounds of pressure, ten pounds, fifteen pounds. He resists and fights back. Twenty pounds, twenty-five. He digs in his heels with all his might. Thirty pounds, thirty-five pounds, and the rope starts to squeeze and he stops resisting and jumps in. Click goes the mouse button.

The second man begins to be pulled into the pit. Five pounds of pressure, ten pounds, fifteen pounds. He resists and fights back. Twenty pounds, twenty-five pounds. He digs in his heels. Thirty pounds, thirty-five pounds, and the rope starts to squeeze. He says, No! and fights back. Forty pounds, forty-five pounds, fifty pounds, fifty-five pounds. It’s harder to breathe as the rope tightens around his stomach and it begins to hurt. Sixty pounds, and he stops resisting and jumps into the pit. Click.

The third man begins to be pulled into the pit. Five, ten, fifteen, twenty, twenty-five pounds of pressure. He resists and fights back. Thirty, thirty-five, forty, and the rope starts to squeeze. He says, No! and fights back. Fifty pounds, sixty. It’s harder to breathe as the rope tightens around his stomach and begins to hurt. Seventy pounds and his feet start to slip toward the pit. He cries out for help, and reaches out to grab a branch – shaped like a cross. In the distance he sees his wife going about her business, trusting him; he sees his children playing, and in their hearts admiring him. And beyond them all, he sees Jesus Christ with a gash in his side standing, with both hands lifted and fists clenched and smiling. And filled with passion, the third man holds fast. Seventy-five, eighty, eighty-five pounds, and the rope cuts into his sides and the pain stabs. Ninety, ninety-five and the tears flow unbidden down his cheeks. One hundred and the rope snaps. No click.”

My prayer is that God, by the power of the Holy Spirit, will burn within my soul such a passion and satisfaction for Him that nothing can compete for the pleasure I find in Him.  I know that it is not only by draining (confessing & repenting) the cup of unholy passions that will cause me to honor God, my wife and family this week, but by filling the cup with the water that he gives so we will never thirst again.  May I drink deeply this week with a full understanding of my desperate need for God…

Enjoy this video concerning a wartime mentality…

Remaining desperate….

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