You are currently browsing the monthly archive for June 2016.


Spirit Writer

Dad

In the above image, my father Jim Bass was putting the final touches on a sign he’d built for the Chidomoyo Christian Mission compound in Zimbabwe Africa. He is now with the Lord.

It was fascinating to watch my father work. He was a true craftsman in every sense of the word. Whether working with steel, wood, rock or concrete, he could build most anything. But I was not content to simply observe.  When dad added a beautiful extension onto our Florida home, I stood watching wondrous things take shape under his deft hands. Oh how I wanted to be like him, and I wanted be a part of his improvement projects around the house. He would put me to work on tasks that would effectively keep me out of his way.

Work Crew

Above is preacher & missionary Jim Bass and his construction crew getting ready to put a roof on…

View original post 743 more words


“If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back. Matthew 18:15

conflictEach of us have gone through those periods of time when relationships fail. Those relationships that are closest are the most painful to lose. Some translations leave out the phrase “against you”. Others include it. In reality, as followers of Jesus it doesn’t really matter if the wrong is committed against you (most painful) or against others. Either way, the offense is destined to hurt a brother or sister in Christ and others!

So what do we do? It’s easy enough to say we need to pray. Sometimes prayer is a scapegoat and can be better paraphrased as “I don’t want to get personally involved” or “I hate conflict” or “It’s really none of my business, it’s God’s job to do the work.”

There is some truth to each of these excuses. But, the reality is, Jesus never shied away from involving himself in the ugly part of ugly people’s lives. Aren’t we called to do the same?

Here are some suggestions for what may help. I’ll say up front that I’m still working on these in my life and it’s not easy. I have a long way to go! Praise Jesus for grace!

Pray: This is the obvious but be specific. Pray for your wisdom. Pray for the welfare of the one who wronged you or who is in danger of hurting themselves or others. Pray FOR them, not ABOUT them. Remember prayer is a two way conversation with the wisest, most loving being in the universe!

Reflect: This mixes in easily with prayer. As you are praying ask God to reveal anything YOU may have done to bring on this situation. Rather than focus on what the person did, try to ascertain why the person may have acted as he did. Most of the time, actions are a symptom, not the disease.

Ask: This is a tricky one and must be used with the utmost care and wisdom. If you have a close friend you can trust to make sure this goes no further, ask them for insight into the situation. Be careful not to turn this into a gossip session!!

Restore: Restoration demands action! To be done well, restoration is done with love. It can’t be hurried. First attempts often fail. Compassion and patience are the two best tools to use. If at all possible, refrain from step four until steps 1-3 are firmly in place!

Rest: The Psalmist states that during the storm we rest in the arms of almighty God. Remember that once we have done all we can to lovingly, gracefully and compassionately strive for resolution, the Holy Spirit is the ultimate source of healing.

PRAYER: Father God. Right now, I pray for those with whom I am in conflict and those I’m concerned about because they are in danger of destroying themselves or others. Give me wisdom to know what I need to do to begin the healing process. Help me follow you. Amen.

 


In the last days, the mountain of the Lord’s house will be the highest of all— the most important place on earth. It will be raised above the other hills, and people from all over the world will stream there to worship. Micah 4:1

moutainWe’d arrived in the middle of the night at our hotel. Although I grew up in the North woods, I’ve always had a fascination with mountains. From time to time in my travels around home I’d enjoy looking out over an area from some high hills, but the mountains still intrigued me. This would be my first trip into the Rocky Mountains. (start John Denver music here)

As I pulled back the curtains in our room the next morning my view was dominated by a huge rock wall that seemed to tower over everything. The top was covered with snow. I couldn’t wait to begin our ascent!

One of the first things that caught my attention as we headed west was that the mountain, which seemed just a stones through from our hotel was really miles away. As we approached the mountain I saw from the hotel we had to travel through some smaller mountains, the foothills, in order to reach our destination.

The road seemed to be a gradual incline at first, until I looked in the rear view mirror and realized we were much higher than when we started. That mountain was much higher and much more dominant than it first appeared. Our car strained to reach the top, but once we reached the summit, the view was breathtaking!

There are times in our lives when it seems our God is small. There are times when we may seem overwhelmed by the future. There may be times when we question our ability to go on. But our God, the one and only true God is much larger than we can imagine. Just as the large mountain towered above everything around it, our God towers in strength, and power over every other god that others may choose be follow.

Don’t be discouraged by the struggles you face as you make the ascent to the mountain. Sometimes the road is gradual. Sometimes it is steep. But the end result is worth the trip.

PRAYER: Father God. There are times when traveling here in the valley I forget your strength and how you tower over everything in my path. Help me to focus on the end of the journey as I struggle, at times, on the way. Amen.

 

 

 


theologicaltraining

For an introduction to the series, read this.

We have now completed the first two articles of the Apostles’ Creed on the Father and the Son. That brings us to the third article on the Holy Spirit, the church, and last things.

View original post 477 more words


curlingupwithGod

On Friday afternoon, I was IMG-20110407-00025near the high school office and there was a small group of recent graduates there. Two of the boys were wearing their hats, which is against the school rules. When I asked them to remove their hats they looked at me with a touch of, “we aren’t students here anymore, we don’t have to follow the rules” in their expressions. Being rather congenial individuals they did remove their hats. Over the years there have been many who immediately do something they were not allowed to do as some sort of proof that they are free of school and its rules!

Rather than continuing with Elijah today, we join the church in Galatia reading letters from Paul. Paul had been in correspondence with them for quite a while. There were issues in the church with the false teaching that salvation could only be achieved through first…

View original post 1,168 more words

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3,736 other followers

RSS Podcasts from Zion

  • Strength in Suffering
    From our series, "Different not Weird: Life Lessons from 1 Peter" Because God loves me and is sovereign I can rest in him when in the midst of suffering.
  • Be Extraordinary
    From our series, "Different not Weird: Life Lessons from 1 Peter." Your attitude determines your altitude. Suffering now prepares us for future glory.
  • Focusing Fully on Jesus Christ
    From our series, “Different not Weird: Life Lessons from 1 Peter”
  • GROW UP
    From our series “Different not Weird: Life Lessons from 1 Peter” Like physical growth, spiritual growth is a necessity in order to become healthy followers of Christ in a foreign land.
  • The Give-and-Take of Domestic Harmony
    From our series, “Different not Weird: Life Lessons from 1 Peter” Harmony in the family is one of the best testimonies of God’s love to the world around us.

LinkedIn

Candle Lighter Award

Built With Grace

Twitter Updates

  • RT @castda: All I do is think about Jesus - when I wake, in the office, during conference calls, driving, at home, before I sleep. I'm tal… 6 hours ago
  • RT @FromGoatToSheep: In today's world, the words "punishment" , "discipline" and "judgement" are being systematically wiped out from the vo… 6 hours ago
  • RT @sharonePack: 🕊 May Jesus Strengthen ~you 🌟 Be still Be content Be delivered Be at peace Be of good cheer Be of goo… 6 hours ago
  • RT @bryant_selena: The mind is powerful, what you think about yourself, you become. 6 hours ago
  • RT @Thale7532: For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption. But he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap etern… 6 hours ago

Archives

June 2016
S M T W T F S
« Mar   Jul »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930  
Follow Built with Grace on WordPress.com
%d bloggers like this: