The blog has again slowed as of late and if it were not for my good friend Tim Dees and some facts of the days it would have been a bit boring around here. I have just finished up a pretty crazy but very rewarding week. Grace was abounding and we have watched God work.
Thursday Night's African Connection Night - We had a benefit concert at Inversion to launch our Mocha Club - an initiative from African Leadership Ministries. A mocha club is a cool idea for friends to get together, pool their resources, to make a big dent in ministry in Africa. The concept is that for the price of 2 mochas (7 bucks) we can do a lot of good together. We are partnered with a mission in Sudan. So, all you POCblog readers - go here now, and sign up for the "Inversion" club to kick in a measly 7 bucks a month. Who can't do that? I know you can, so if you are still reading...go here now and do it.
Friday/Saturday - Inversion Men's Overnight - On Friday the some young men from Inversion headed out to hang some together and look at manhood through the tripartite offices of Jesus as Prophet, Priest in King. A little fun theology for today. In the Old Testament there are three offices which were anointed with oil into the service of God. The prophet, the priest and the king. These offices are types which were fulfilled in the life and ministry of Jesus, "the Christ = the anointed one" as our great prophet, priest and king. John Calvin describes it well:
Moreover, it is to be observed, that the name Christ refers to those three offices: for we know that under the law, prophets as well as priests and kings were anointed with holy oil. Whence, also, the celebrated name of Messiah was given to the promised Mediator.
Jean Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion
Jesus then flows his ministry into the church through his offices. Through the preached Word of God flows his prophetic ministry. Through the sacraments of baptism and communion he mediates the new covenant and his priestly ministry, and through the rightly established authority of elders he exercises his rule as King. As men I encouraged them to see these roles of Jesus, and his ministry, extended to their homes. Men should take seriously the study of God's Word, his call to mission and repentance, to keep families together on mission - a prophet's life is marked by prayer and the Word. The worship of God is to be facilitating in the home by Fathers who follow Jesus in priestly role, empowering and leading family worship. JI Packer recounts the following in the Puritan view of the family:
It was the husband’s responsibility to take them to church on the Lord’s Day, and oversee the sanctifying of that entire day in the home, to catechize the children, and teach them the faith; to examine the whole family after each sermon, to see how much had been retained and understood, and to fill any gaps in understanding that might remain; to lead the family in worship daily, ideally twice a day; and to set an example of sober godliness at all times and in all matters. To this end he must be willing to take time out to learn the faith that he is charged to teach.JI Packer, The Quest of Godliness, The Puritan Vision of the Christian Life (Wheaton: Crossway, 1990) 370.
A forward thinking vision for these mostly single men to prepare their lives for the days ahead. We gave many practical examples of leading a family in the home in the worship of God and raising of children. Finally, we spoke of the leadership role in relation to all things practical. Finances, vision, developing/shepherding our wives and kids...it was just a great weekend. We had a 4.5 hour teach in on all these things.
Sunday Morning - Faith...I preached three services at Fellowship Bible Church expositing Hebrews 11:1-6. It was a fun morning and God challenged me greatly to continue to live by faith. For without faith it is impossible to please God. A quick little thought for the road:
By faith in Christ we are accepted and forgiven by God, by works of faith in Christ we please the heart of God
Wow - Calvin and Packer are so much smarter than me.
This week - I just finished cranking out an application to the Acts 29 church planting network. We turned the whole thing around in 2.5 days. Many quick-turnaround thanks to my references (Doug, Jeff, Jeff, and Maridus) and to the A29 staff for helping me get er done. We head to Seattle tomorrow for church planter's training and then a theology conference hosted by the Resurgence. The conference is hosting Bruce Ware for a look at the modes of Divine Providnece. It was a privilege to connect a friend, Gary Shavey who directs The Resurgence, with Dr. Ware and seeing the conference taking place. Should be a fun week with some R&R as well.
Many thanks to my beloved wife Kasey for being so steadfast and encouraging in these days. I can't wait to get away with you this summer...no kids, no e-mail, nothing but you and me.
Out for today.