Saturday, February 1, 2014

Running The Race

Hey Sports Fans as you all know this weekend is the Holy Grail of all sporting events of the entire year super bowl weekend. On Monday morning we’ll know which is the best football team in the NFL, who is the best quarter back, the most valuable player, even what was the best commercial. Next year at this time we will do it all over again and…will you remember who played in the 2014 super bowl, who won, or will it be just a distant memory. Fame in this world is short Lived, athletes train for years for one event, only to be forgotten in a few short months or years after winning the event. Some athletes are better known for what they have done off the playing field then on. One such athlete is Eric Liddell, gold medal winner of the 400 meter race in the 1924 Olympics.  Strangely enough Eric Liddell is best known for refusing to run in the 100 m race because it was scheduled to be run on Sunday. And for Liddell to run on Sunday would be breaking the Sabbath, which would compromise his religious beliefs. You see Eric Liddell was a preacher who just happened to be a great runner, not a great runner who just happened to be a preacher. This distinction is what makes all the difference. Liddell‘s whole reason for running was to bring glory to God for the gift that God had blessed him with, to use this gift as a platform to proclaim the gospel of God. Even though he underwent intense pressure to change his mind Liddell stood his ground and remained true to his convictions.  More concerned about pleasing his God than he was pleasing man, Liddell was well aware of what he did for God would last forever, unlike his accomplishments in the Olympics. Eric Liddell’s story brings to mind the story of the Apostle Paul , who before he was a Christian was a up and coming religious leader who was on track to becoming the High Priest of Israel who was like the Pope. In Philippians chapter 3 Paul gives a list of his accomplishments as a person and that he counts them as rubbish. In Phil. 3:7 -8 Paul says “I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ”. Only what we do for Christ will last, everything else like Paul said is rubbish

Remember every breath is a gift from God, in Matthew chapter 28:19 Jesus Christ told us to make disciples of all the nations baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. This is what Eric Liddell was all about, he gave his life serving God as a missionary to China where he preached the gospel and died in a Japanese internment camp ministering to his flock. The souls that were won to Christ because of his ministry, the time he spent with God mediating on his word, the time he spent communing with God in Prayer & the glory he brought to God’s name because of the stand he took in the Olympics will last forever. The luster of his gold medal has long worn off.  My prayer is that we as Christians would serve God, wherever he has put us, spending our time wisely getting to know God better by hiding his word in our hearts. To be like Eric Liddell and do what the writer of Hebrews says to do in Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

If My Words Abide in You

Happy Thanksgiving 

I would just like to say how thankful I am for God and his word. That God gave us his word the Bible, so we can know him and enjoy him through spending time in his word. By that I mean by reading the Bible, by studying, meditating, delighting and yes by memorizing the Bible, God's Holy word. Which we as Christians so often take for granted, because as Americans the Bible has always been available to us. I would like to share with you a sermon from John Piper a Lover of God and his Word, I hope this will make us all more thankful, for God and how much he really does love us. If you like to memorize the Bible I pray this sermon will strengthen your desire to continue storing God's word in your heart, mind and soul. If your aren't into memorizing the Bible I pray you will start, or if you just enjoy hearing the Bible being quoted, this sermon is for you.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

What Memorizing the Bible Means to Me

Genesis 1:1, John 1:1, Acts 4:12 and John 3:16 were some of the first Bible verses I was given to memorize in Sunday school, four and a half decades ago. Ever since then Bible memorization has been my favorite spiritual discipline.
Through the years of memorizing Scripture, I have experienced my share of spiritual highs and lows. Usually the lows were caused by some kind of sin issue. The most difficult of these spiritual lows was about four years ago when my wife suffered a stroke, and in an instant she lost all of her short term memory, and a lot of her long term memory. Pretty much every Bible verse she had memorized was gone in the blink of an eye. God wiped her hard drive.
At that time, I thought, “what’s the point.” I too lost most of the Bible verses I had memorized, but by choice. Slowly day after day, this period lasted about two years. By God’s grace he drew me back to memorizing his word again when I was driving back home alone from Texas to New Mexico. As I drove down the road I asked God to help me to start re-memorizing the book of Colossians and he did. God led us to start a Bible memory group at our church, for accountability and to encourage other believers to memorize the Bible. Since then I have memorized the book of Romans, and am currently re-memorizing 1 Peter, and memorizing Psalm 119.
God showed me through my wife’s stroke that the most important part of memorizing Scripture is the process. It’s the seconds, the minutes, and the hours of each day that I spend in fellowship with him, delighting in his word. As I run the words of each verse into my mind, God’s truths seep into my heart, transforming me by renewing my mind, and making my thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ.
I am able to think God-breathed thoughts from his word instead of my own sinful thoughts. I thank God for the gift of desiring to memorize the Bible. There is nothing like the feeling of being able to drive down the road, or sit in a waiting room or lay in bed on a sleepless night and commune with God by meditating on his word. I pray all believers will experience the joy of hiding God’s word in their heart.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Guest Post on Psalm 8

Hi my name is Aaron Waite and I recently posted a video of me quoting Psalm 8 intermixed between English and Spanish. Since it was rather unusual, the members of this LWI (Living Word Initiative) thought I should record a video explanation. I hope it encourages you and sheds some light of the subject. Please make sure to watch both videos, especially if you haven't seen the quoting video before.

Background Video

The Scripture

In my explanation video I talk a lot about encouraging native Spanish speakers, primarily Mexicans to memorize scripture, but, I don't just want to encourage them. My vision, as is the vision of this group, is to see people all around the world quoting scripture in their native tongue. Living Word Initiative is by no means linked to any nationality. We want to encourage people of every nationality and language to memorize God's word and quote it. So, I very adamantly exhort those of you whose original language is other than English to memorize God’s word and quote it! Don’t let being shy or any fear you might have detour you! Scripture memorization is an amazingly excellent way of becoming more like Christ!

Gloria a Dios! (Praise be to God) 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Evidence Not Seen

While surfing for material on scripture memorization, I read an off handed coment, which went something like this. Darlene Rose was glad she had memorized so much scripture. And that is all it said, well this peaked my "cat killing" curiosity and I Googled Darlene Deibler Rose. Up popped this book along with a half dozen other web sites. On some of the sites you can read excerpts of this book, which I did, weting my appeite for more. I promptly ordered the book on amazon, which I am really glad I did. This is an amazing story of a young missionary woman forced to endure the horriably ordeals of a Japanese World War II prisoner of war camp. Her faith being tested, almost beyond belief at the hands of a sadisticaly keeper. At 6'4" 250 lbs I have never been accussed of being whimpy, yet as I read this story the words blured on the page as I wept reading this faith strenghtening story.

Romans 8:17 says we are fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him, in order that we might be glorified with him. Glorified she is for the suffering she endured, altought Darlene suffered so much, she never lost sight of why she was there, to be a good solider for Christ. And a Solider she was, standing in front of the comander of the camp, a man who she had seen beat men and women to near death, who was breaking the news to her of her husbands death, who had died some three months prior, in a prisoner of war camp for the males. Mr, Yamaji consoled her by telling her she was still young and when the war was over, she would be able to remarry, and live a good life. Darlene asks Mr. Yamaji for premission to speak with him, being granted permission, she tells him about the hope she has in Christ, and that God put her there, in that camp,at that time to share Christ with him. The nugget of Gold, I was looking for, was when Darlene tells of when, her  Bible is taken away,  and how God uses the scripture she had memorized as a child, and even during her imprisonment, to give her spiritual food. Read this book, you won't be able to put it down.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

How Busy People Memorize Scripture

I found this great website post about How busy people memorize scripture. This website is geared for women, but the advice given can be applied to men and women. I get the feeling many men, if not most think that scripture memorization is for Childern and women and that somehow they are given a pass. This is simply not true! As a member of the male species I believe it is important for men, the leaders of the church and family, to lead by example and listen to the good scriptural advice in this program, and lead your family in Bible Memorization.