Under The Cross

Southside Bible High School Ministry – 1 Corinthians 1:18

City Life

There is nothing quite like a city. The chaos, noise, smells, and masses of people.  Suzy and I love to walk downtown Indianapolis on Mass Ave.  New York City to me is one of my favorite places in the world.  Now there is another in the running – Port au Prince. It has all the things one might love about a city but times 10.  More chaos, more noise, more smells (many are not so good), and one of the densest populations in the world. 

It isn’t an aesthetically pleasing city.  Garbage lines the streets and fills the water ways. Buildings which were once whole have been destroyed or broken by the 2010 earthquake which rocked the city at a magnitude of 7.  Slums of tin roofed and walled homes patched with cardboard are spotted throughout.  

The best part of this city though is the people. They line the streets selling their wares – raw meet, mangoes, sugar cane, medical supplies, clothing, shoes, drinks, lottery tickets, etc…  They speed around in cars, on motorbikes, in tap taps (Haitian buses): even when the double line is there and a vehicle is coming their way.  Sitting in parks, speaking with neighbors, yelling about politics through bull horns.  People everywhere, but people everywhere means people made in  the Image of God. 

Port au Prince has many needs but as with any place with people, Port au Prince needs God.  All the financial gain, infrastructure, government aid would be a benefit but in the end it is empty.  Christ is eternal and these people each have a date with Him at the gates of eternity. 

I like cities because they are full of people. People God loves. People who need God. 

As you pray for our trip, pray for the people of Haiti that God would make Himself known to them. They need many things but above all Christ. 

Breaking Barriers 

Three years of French in high school and I always wondered when I would use it. Here I am more than 15 years later and I wish I would have paid more attention and worked harder.  

If anything is difficult about the time in Haiti it has been the language barrier. For the last two days we have been working with a gentleman named Karly in his yard where he has invited local kids, many of whom are part of a ministry he runs every Sunday.   


We have had great opportunities to sing with them, share Bible stories, color, jump rope, and many other things.  In all of this language is the biggest barrier: but smiles, laughter, play, and most of all love has made interactions easier.  It has been awesome to see God working through the kids to be bold and step outside their comfort zones.   

If you would pray for anything please pray that Karly’s ministry might flourish and that God would bless him that he might continue to bless others.

Karly helping us organize the kids during soccer

Haiti 2016

It has been almost two years since I have posted to this blog and I thought the Haiti trip would be a good reason to bring it back.  This is where we will post details about our trip.  I don’t want to over promise, but we will try and send a couple of updates throughout the week of the trip and one or two more before we leave.

For starters here are some things you can be praying for as we prepare.

  • Servant hearts among the students and leaders
  • Unity among team members
  • Good preparation for our VBS
  • Parents and families of those attending

Check back over the next couple of weeks for some more information before we depart.

Haiti

 

ACTS Prayer

On Sunday I promised I would create a blog post to explain the ACTS prayer method.  The idea is to have a guided way to pray rather than just asking for things from God.  While asking God for things is not bad, it is to often the only type of communication we have with Him.  Consider how frustrating it would be to be in a relationship with someone who only asked you for things.

The ACTS prayer method encourages you to do the following.

A – Adoration: Praise God by speaking to Him about His greatness.

C – Confession: Talk to to God about your sins, ask for forgiveness and repent (turn away) from your sin.

T – Thanksgiving: Thank God for all He does and is doing in your life and in the lives of those around you.

S – Supplication: Request from God that He intervene in your life and the life of others.

 

As you use this method one suggestion is to actually write down your prayers rather than just talking.  This may help you focus a little better.

New Start

On Wednesday my son began his school career with his first day of pre-school.  What an exciting day it was for him and for my wife and I as parents a nervous one. 

Regardless of your start to the new school year it is another opportunity.  An opportunity to be different.  Yes, many of the people at your school have known you for years, but every year seems like a chance to be a new person maybe a better person. 

This year as you start the school year make a commitment to be better, not of your own ability, but rather through Christ. 

Philippians 4:13 – I can do all thing through Him who strengthens me. (ESV)

Let Him work through you and thus be a better person in Him. 

 

 

Slavery?

1 Corinthians 7:22-23  For he who was called in the Lord as a slave is a freedman of the Lord.  Likewise he who was free when called is a slave of Christ.  You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men. (ESV)

Essentially one has two options – either you are a slave of Christ, in which you have freedom, or you are a slave of men.  Which are you?  What controls your thoughts and actions?  Is spending time with God only pulling you away from everything else you enjoy or does everything else pale in comparison to being with God?

Separating oneself from the world and training ourselves on Christ (or fixing ourselves on Christ as the author of our faith as the author of Hebrews calls us to do) is not an easy task and, in fact, is impossible without leaning on Him.  But as Adam, Moses, Rahab, and many others we must do this by faith.  Lean on Him to provide a heart and mind for Him.

Decorating Tips

Consider your daily thoughts.  If you were to stop right now and list the five things you have thought about most today what would they be?  Now consider turning these five thoughts into posters/decorations that you would hang in a room for your family and friends to come and see.   How would you feel about the decorations in your room, how would your friends and family feel about the decorations, how would God feel about the decorations? 

This may seem like an odd thing but the truth is that it is similar to our body which is a temple inside which the Holy Spirit dwells if we have accepted Christ as our Lord and Savior. 

1 Corinthians 6:19 – Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?  You are not your own. (ESV)

So how well have you been decorating God’s temple?