Be free, bouncies! Be free!
It ought to be the business of every day to prepare for our last day.
VBS 2005 - an opportunity to teach boys and girls the One Great Reality.
Vacation Bible School started up Monday and our church has officially been transformed into a jungle. . . complete with a boardwalk, pond, Jungle Jim, 15 foot palm trees, live animals, and a huge pygmy hut. Amazing. We have been having a blast getting set up and now running the program for the kids.
We struck a gold mine this year for new children. A woman in our church got saved about 2 or 3 months ago and has just jumped in to our ministry. She is the apartment manager for a large complex in town that just happens to be full of kids. We have had blitzes and parties over there for weeks getting the kids excited. Boys and girls from over there have been getting pumped about this week for a long time, and they have come out excited.
We approached canvassing differently this year. Normally we worked the standby method of door-to-door, but we have had little to no fruit from a lot of effort with that, so we tried some new ideas. We held Wal-mart blitzes and pre-registration parties in an apartment complex and in our neighborhood. We rolled out our big blow-up bounce house, our gorilla costume, free candy and ice cream, face paint and balloon animals. The response has been very good - lots of visitors and excitement in the community. The kids have come ready for a great time.
Every night as I have looked into the eyes of many boys and girls that have never been in our church before, I am struck with the truth that this is why I am here. This is it. I am here to introduce boys and girls to a God that is huge and a God that has very important commands and plans for thier lives. Boys and girls need to know that God is the One Great Reality. There is nothing like giving the gospel to kids. They listen, they get excited, they are with you on every word.
Christ spent a large portion of His ministry on children . . .and so ought we. A look at a child teaches us a lot. Our faith is small. God gives grace to the humble and lowly. The big things and the small things are important. His love knows no partiality. He is supreme over all creation.
He took time to scoop them in His arms and bless them.
Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God...he took them in his arms and blessed them, laying his hands on them. - Mark 10:14-16
He resurrected a child.
Taking her by the hand he said to her, "Talitha cumi," which means, "Little girl, I say to you, arise." And immediately the girl got up and began walking (for she was twelve years of age), and they were immediately overcome with amazement. - Mark 5:41-42
He healed a little girl's sickness with a word.
"O woman, great is your faith! Be it done for you as you desire." And her daughter was healed instantly. - Matthew 15:28
He used a boy's bread and fish to perform an amazing miracle.
"There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?" Jesus said, "Have the people sit down." - John 6:9-10
Children praised Him in the temple as He came.
The chief priests and the scribes saw...the children crying out in the temple, "Hosanna to the Son of David!" - Matthew 21:15
He used children to teach us about our little faith.
Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. - Matthew 18:3-4
He said if you recieve children in His name, you recieve Him and His Father.
"Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me, receives not me but him who sent me." - Mark 9:37
Adapted from "Strong Enough to Care about the Weak," A Godward Life, Volume 1
I bet you had no idea what you were missing.
I could think of about 3 without looking at the list, how many could you?
I've always wanted to cut a rug in front of the president.
Supreme Court Nominee John Robert's son escaped his Mother at the nomination announcement. And what else would you do at a time like that? The boy showed his glee for his dad with a little victory dance.
Has anyone played the dice game FARKEL?
Beth and I went over to a family in our church's house last night, and we had a blast playing the crazy intense game. We played 4 games of it. It is fast paced...you can build up points around the board...use other players points...and even work some strategy. Okay, so I really just think its fun to say, "farkel."
Read on for the official rules and regulations.
. . : : FARKEL RULES AND REGULATIONS : : . .
6 dice, Pen and Paper
All players roll one die, high die goes first. (Winner of previous game goes first otherwise)
POINT VALUES FOR DICE
3 ones = 1000
3 twos = 200
3 threes = 300
3 fours = 400
3 fives = 500
3 sixes = 600
3 pairs = 1500
2 triplets = 2500 (example: 3 3 3 6 6 6 )
straight = 1500 (example: 1 2 3 4 5 6 )
4 of a kind = 1000
5 of a kind = 2000
6 of a kind = 3000
You must have 500 ponts to open. Roll all six dice. Hold the dice that are worth points (keep only the dice you want to keep, but you must keep at least one die worth points to continue rolling). Roll the remaining dice. Continue this until your roll results in no die worth any points ("FARKEL") or you decide not to roll further. If you score with all six dice then you get to roll all six dice again, adding the score of the previous roll to the new roll.
You cannot combine scores from different rolls to make a larger roll score. For example, if a 5 is thrown in the first roll and removed from the active dice as a score of 50, and then 2 more 5's are rolled in the next turn, the player can't make this a triple and score 500. The score at this point would be 150. Triples and straights must be rolled in one roll.
When a player is finished with their turn, the next player has the option of using the previous players points by rolling however many dice were not used by the previous player. If a 1 or a 5 is rolled, the player can use the previous players points and continue thier turn until they "farkel" or decide to stop. Example: Player One scores 1850 points and decides to stop without rolling 3 remaining dice. Player Two then has the option of resetting the score and simply rolling all six dice like normal or rolling those 3 remaining dice for the 1850 points plus whatever the dice score. If a farkel is rolled, that players turn is over. If points are scored, Player Two uses the Player Ones points (1850 pts) plus whatever they roll and may continue rolling or stop and keep thier score. The next player may use however many dice Player Two did not use, and the score continues to grow until someone "farkels" or starts thier turn over.
1st roll: 6 2 3 1 1 5 You could keep either of the 1's the 5, all three of these, or any combination of these.
Keeping 1 1, Rolling four dice, Current score = 200
2nd roll: 3 3 3 4, You would keep all the 3's (300 pts), Current score 500 (200 from 1st roll + 300 from 2nd roll) If this is your first turn or you are not on the "board" yet, you will probably want to stop here. You must have 500 points to get on the "board". You could roll the last die, but if you fail to roll a 1 or 5 then you "Farkel" and lose all the points and your turn.
The goal is to get to 10,000 points. Once a player reaches 10,000 points or higher all other players have one turn to beat the high score. Highest score after final turn wins. (No, the player that reached 10,000 first does not get another turn if someone beats them.)
I came across this article the other day posted on eucatastrophe.
As I write this, looming over my shoulder is my office bookshelf chocked full of books. Sitting on the shelves are quite a few titles that I either haven't started or am merely part-way through. For most of them, though, I have at least gotten through them over the last few years. But, to my shame, among the ones I have read, it is quite a task, if a plausible one, to recall all the things I wanted to remember about the book.
I say, if you read a book, you ought to be able to remember what your read. At least the good stuff.
In the article, Greg Koukl of Stand to Reason addresses this problem. He institutes a plan for mastering books that are worth it. His plan is a preview skim followed by skimming on top of deeper skimming on top of word-for-word reading to accomplish book mastery. I happen to like the sounds of book mastery. If I could accomplish book mastery over some of the daunting titles in my library, I would be a happy man.
A book is like a garden carried in the pocket. CHINESE PROVERB
Hope it is helpful.
The only hope of a decreasing self is an increasing Christ.
F. B. MEYER
The law breaks the hard heart, but the gospel melts it. A stone duly broken, may be still a hard stone; but the gospel melts.
There are some people I just can't wait to speak to in heaven. David's Mighty Men are pretty high up on my list.
Jashobeam, a Hachmonite. . . wielded his spear against 300 whom he killed at one time. - I Chronicles 11:11
Benaiah the son of Jehoiada was a valiant man. . . He struck down two heroes of Moab. He also went down and struck down a lion in a pit on a day when snow had fallen. And he struck down an Egyptian, a man of great stature, five cubits tall. The Egyptian had in his hand a spear like a weaver's beam, but Benaiah went down to him with a staff and snatched the spear out of the Egyptian's hand and killed him with his own spear. - I Chronicles 11:22-25
Abishai, the brother of Joab. . . he wielded his spear against 300 men and killed them. - I Chronicles 11:20