Family Ministry

Go Ironwood Eagles!

So, Friday night, Stephanie and I went out to eat using a gift card a co-worker had given me. When we got back to the house, we realized what a nice night it was and decided to go for a walk around the neighborhood. That’s when I heard the announcer. He was calling the local football game at Ironwood High School; it’s across the street from my neighborhood. We decided to walk over and take a look.

The lights were on, the stands were full, the sounds of whistles blowing, helmets clashing, and silly trivia from the press box filled the air. The band was playing, the cheerleaders were cheering, the color guard was color guarding (although one of the girls dropped her flag more than once). Young girls and boys were walking hand in hand while gazing into each others wide starry eyes. I forgot how much perfume high school girls wear.

Stephanie and I really enjoyed this unexpected night cap to our evening. As we walked back home with still more than six minutes left on the fourth quarter clock (the score was 41 – 6 Ironwood), I looked back at the stands. I couldn’t help but wonder if these young people knew my God. Has anyone told them about Jesus?  How can I be available to do the work of the LORD in the lives of these young people?

Ministry Moments Of Insanity

Cut These Cords!

C.S. Lewis happens to be my favorite author, and The Silver Chair happens to be one of my all time favorite books. I don’t believe I will ever be as excellent a word smith as The great C.S. Lewis but I do hope to one day be a published author. I have had a strong sense of the book I would very much like to write for many years now, but never have I taken a moment to jot even one line down. My unwritten book, whose working title is “Moments of Insanity”, is based on a passage from my favorite book by my favorite author. I don’t know how many people will relate to the premise, which I’m sure would be essential for a successful book, but the whole idea strikes deep within me and I would very much like to finish the work if for no other person’s benefit than my own. I’ll pretend this is a two way conversation and that you’ve just asked “What is the premise?” Many of my friends might suggest that reading my blog is very much like a conversation with me – one in which you don’t often get a word in, but I digress. To answer your question:

In the book, The Silver Chair, there is a Knight who assists the Queen of an under world and is in all discernible matters a very well put together, very sane person. At night however he is strapped to an enchanted chair because, we are told that he has fits of rage and pure insanity. The enchanted chair is the only thing keeping him together. But during one of these nightly fits, the Knight shouts these words:

“Quick! I am sane now. Every night I am sane. If only I could get out of this enchanted chair, it would last. I should be a man again. But every night they bind me, and so every night my chance is gone. But you are not enemies. I am not your prisoner. Quick! Cut these cords.”

In this moment, we are faced with a choice. Do we believe this insane, enraged maniac? Or do we prefer the put-together version of the character. As a Christian, I have had moments in my life when everything suddenly seems more clear than before, when I know some action I must do, despite not always knowing to what end or what purpose that the thing must be done. These moments seem to occur most often during a church service or personal devotion; times when my focus is most on the creator.

I believe we are created beings, creatures made by a creator. I believe God created us with a purpose or purposes in mind and that at some point we as a species left that divine purpose to follow our own. For the most of us, we get along just fine in this condition; pursuing careers, mates, pleasures on both intellectual and physical levels. These are our daytime hours, our daily lives when things are almost on auto-pilot. I wake up, goto work, goto lunch, return to work, go home, spend time watching TV, eat dinner, spend time with the family, goto bed, wake up, and do it all over again. But there are moments that break the white-line-fever method in which we go about our lives. Its in those moments that I believe we become aware. I want to write a book about those moments. Or more precisely, how to ‘cut these cords’ that keep us from leaving the ‘chair’ and walking in that strangely clear frame of mind.

Ministry myThoughts


I learned something interesting as I was watching a documentary about Border Patrol last night.  Drug smugglers from Mexico will use people who want to come to America as distractions for the border patrol agents to allow themselves a window to get their illegal imports across the border.  They send people across with a people smuggler and watch from the Mexican side how the patrol officers find them, where they come from, how they catch the illegal aliens, and then use that information to cross undetected.

I thought of a friend of mine, who is a magician (  He uses entertaining stories to distract his audience from whats really going on.  A simple waving of his hand, or making eye contact at just the right moment, delivering a punch line, these are the tools he uses to create the illusion of magic.  Distractions…

Yesterday I got an email from an old high school friend informing me that she was no longer going to accept the new gold dollar because the words “In God We Trust” have been moved to the edge of the coin instead of on the face or the back as in previous versions.  This fact was brought to the attention of many people when the US Treasury mistakenly minted several coins without the inscription on even the edge.  This upset many Christians and has resulted in several angry emails and email chains like the one I got today.  My friend didn’t seem angry, just adamant in Her decision to expressly not use the new dollar. 

Not to pick on my friend, but think about that for a moment.  There are Christians who have decided to ‘take-a-stand’ for God by refusing to use the new dollar coin.  I began to consider how they would make this stand.  Images of gas station clerks standing baffled as some stranger explains to them why they won’t except those ungodly coins as change come to mind.  Are we really so distracted from the great commission that this is what we allow to pass as taking a stand? 

The enemy has sent distractions across our borders and is watching us react, all while moving undetected in the process.  We are watching the left hand, while the right hand is doing that thing we needed to see.  I don’t believe we should ignore the attack on our faith in matters such as the inscription on a coin, or “under God” being removed from our pledge, or the Ten Commandments being removed from our court house walls, anymore than I believe the border patrol should ignore illegal immigrants crossing the border.  But aren’t these things simply symptoms of the problem? Isn’t there a better way to spread this Gospel than refusing to accept a coin?  We are focused on the left hand when our attention should be on the right.  Wouldn’t it be great if we actually showed people how to live the montra “In God we trust” instead of demanding it be printed their coins?