Thursday, November 29, 2007

What does Pullman say??

Christians seem to once again in some circles be circling the wagons regarding the upcoming movie "The Golden Compass". It is written by and atheist, they kill God in the movie, it is a book that is a reaction against the Narnia Books of C.S. Lewis. Well it always seems like a smart move to take time to listen to the man behind the novels that are inspiring the movie. FilmChat has a great interview that answers a lot of questions we all have regarding this movie.

My opinion is that a movie is not something that seems to be able to shake the Kingdom of God, even though it seems to shake us up a lot! I think this movie is a great chance to go watch and purposely pursue conversation with people about the truth in the film, about the truth in the gospel. I probably would not let my 12 year old daughter (she is 2 right now but...) go see the movie alone without making sure to invest time in discussing the themes of the movie after. I do think there needs to be a level of discernment upon entering in ANY movie, even ones with "Passion" in their title.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Is it Yes or No??

I think I am going to tell Zach Nielsen our worship leader to look into playing this song this Sunday. I think it is applicable as we are approaching an election year! I realize that if you are an Arminian that there are not a lot of songs that speak of our "free will" and our ability to choose God, maybe cause there are not many verses that allow that...maybe... is it yes or no?

HT (Founders)

Monday, November 26, 2007

SubUrban Jungle

I live in the suburbs and the church I work at an upper middle class church in the suburbs, I am not a fan of the suburbs, I am not a fan of kids who drive around in daddy's BMW. I have grown so much in this church though, where I would be happy and comfortable in the University area of town or downtown ABQ which are a "little rougher" than the Desert Springs Neighborhood, I realize that the Albuquerque suburbs is my Samaria. This is where I would normally avoid going to, the Starbucks with the 14 year old ordering a non-fat, decaf iced Carmel organic latte while the mom is checking how her last botox treatment went. Yeah this is the place I did not want to be, but God has stretched me, has challenged me to see that the gospel is not just for the city, the gospel is for the suburbs and in a lot of ways I am dealing with college students that grew up in a youth group that was all about fun, and stupid games, never hearing the gospel, but yet thinking they are saved. I am growing up around a bunch of Zach Morris's and Kelly Kaposki's and I am learning to be content and learning to love these people. I am not there yet, but I hope some day!! Until then I am going to be hitting up Steve McCoy's blog over at Reformissionary and his new page "Mission to the Suburbia"

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Must be a tough year for Hawkeye fans...

So yes we here at UNM are excited for the hire of Coach Steve Alford a man I consider a friend. We are 6-0 right now with wins over not the best of teams, but still all you can do is play who is in front of you right? Well it seems Coach Alford's old school is not doing so well either in basketball or football.... Although I am not sure if God is a Hawkeye fan or not, relating their trials to Job's is a little extreme, living in Iowa must truly truly suck, maybe I will ask former Iowa resident Vitamin Z his opinion...

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


I have the extreme pleasure and privilege to be this year's UNM Men's Basketball Team Chaplin. I had previously been the video coordinator before leaving to work full time at my church Desert Springs to lead the college/young adult gathering. As Chaplin my job is not super complicated, I give a 10-15 minute message to the players who wish to stay for it as well as for Coach Steve Alford and his staff. I am leading the team through a fly over of the bible and hoping to connect the reality that all stories in the O.T. all point and are shadows if Jesus Christ.

Today though for their chapel time before their game against Hawaii I read Psalm 100, a Psalm of thanksgiving. I also read these statistics to them:

1. More than 1.5 billion people around the world live on less than a $1 a day.

2. More than one billion people do not have access to clean water.

3. Every year six million children die from malnutrition before their fifth birthday.

4. More than 50 percent of Africans suffer from water-related diseases such as cholera and infant diarrhea.

5. More than 800 million people go to bed hungry every day, 300 million are children.

6. Of these 300 million children, only eight percent are victims of famine or other emergency situations. More than 90 percent are suffering long-term malnourishment and micronutrient deficiency.

7. Declining soil fertility, land degradation, and the AIDS pandemic have led to a 23 percent decrease in food production per capita in the last 25 years even though population has increased dramatically.

8. A woman living in sub-Saharan Africa has a 1 in 16 chance of dying in pregnancy. This compares with a 1 in 3,700 risk for a woman from North America.

These stats were taken from a sermon from Pastor John Piper, here is the manuscript. The reason I wanted to read these was for these players to and myself for that matter to realize that we are blessed, blessed beyond blessed. Most of these players dream of playing for the NBA and probably most will never achieve this, so my hope was that they realize in the larger scheme of things on this planet having a pair of shoes is a blessing, having clean drinking water and food 3 times a day, heck having food 1 time a day is a tremendous blessing given from our Lord.

I hope as the season goes on that they will see that being sponsored by Nike and playing one of the greatest arenas in sports, "The Pit" are great joys, but nothing compared to the blessing that is offered in Christ. The joy of being redeemed and brought into an unbreakable family, given eternal nourishing bread of life, and being able to drink from the fountain of life, that those things found ONLY in Christ would being their and my motivation to get out of bed in the morning!!!

Well I am off to the game, in my SUV with my beautiful wife and daughter to cheer with 15000 fans for the team, and all I can say is......blessed!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Only Thing of Importance...

"The only thing of transcendent importance of human beings is the knowledge of God. This knowledge does not belong to those who endlessly focus on themselves. Those who truly come to know God delight to just know him. He becomes their center. They think of him, delight in him, boast of him. They want to know more and more what kind of God he is. As they learn that he is the God "who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth," naturally they want those same values to prevail- not because their egos are bound up with certain arbitrary notions of, say, "justice," but because their center is God and they take their cues from him and his character. They boast in him."

D.A. Carson "The Cross and Christian Ministry: Leadership Lessons from 1 Corinthians"

Awesome Video

I saw this video this morning and it just reminds me of what I have in Christ alone! Yeah something to be thankful for come Thursday, someOne to share with family and friends!!!

HT: (Life Together)

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Thank God We are All Perfect!

Ok this is a bit of a rant, but here it goes. I was on another blog, Between Two World's reading about Mark Driscoll's apology and seeking for Humility and while most people would praise or even be convicted by Mark's words instead they (the commentators) are freaking upset about a joke and T-Shirt. This is what I do not get about reformed people sometimes (and I am one) we are so unbelievably fast to critisize about anything. We take out our magnifying glasses and pick apart every little thing. And it seems like a lot of these reformaniacs seem to think that we should all preach like Jonathan Edwards and speak like John Owen! Are you serious?? I love those two men and love to read them, but that does not mean I preach or I act like either 2, I am a 27 year old hispanic preacher in New Mexico, not an old white dude in London or New England. I have noticed that we are so quick to pick apart a song sung, or a preacher if he ever so slightly slips up. Yeah we sure are a great city on a hill sometimes, we pick each other apart, we get upset when someone makes a freakin joke on stage or if someone talks about loving others in their city more than loving the Puritans. I do not get it, I do not want any part of it.

We need to get off our butts ( would say another word but don't want others to miss the point of the blog cause something off hand was there) get our nose out of theology books for like 5 min and be in the world. We (Calvinists) suck at this, I am not talking about mission trips to China, I am talking about Mission trips to Starbucks tonight!!! We suck at loving those around us, we suck at proclaiming the gospel in a loving way, basically we suck at loving our neighbors.

This is some real frustrations I have, I think they are legit, I do not know the answer, but I think throwing grenades at someone who is confessing is not the best start.

Here are my fav. living preachers, all of which I have heard people critisize for one reason or another, John Piper- he is too friendly to charasmatics, he said ass in a sermon. Matt Chandler-Charasmatic...enough said, Mark Driscoll-Do I even have to go there...

Thursday, November 08, 2007

The Golden Compass

I have received a couple email forwards that are warning me about a new movie coming out called "The Golden Compass". These emails come from Christians and have told me not to take my daughter, and to boycott this movie. From what I have read this movie along with the other 2 that will follow are based on books written by an atheist who wrote this series as a reaction against C.S. Lewis's "Chronicles of Narnia". The whole stink about this movie is that it is promoting a atheistic agenda and that we need to avoid it and boycott this movie, one email even told me that "they kill God in the end", kinda dramatic if you ask me.

I do not like mass emails that warn me to boycott this or this because of anti-Christian messages, or avoid so and so because he has this political agenda, and I down right loathe the email messages that tell me if I am not ashamed of Jesus I will forward it on to 10 of my best friends. The truth is that, that email has got me wanting to see this movie, whereas before I probably could have cared less. Why? Why should we not boycott it. Because were are called to be in the world, we are called to understand different worldviews, we are called to love people outside our bubble. Crazy, I know, but we are called to be lights in darkness, which means we need to go to the dark places.

Internet Monk shares a great response to such boycott and warnings and I think he is right on... Check it out here

Here is a thought, go see this movie, use discernment, realize it is a movie enjoy it for what it is. And then maybe engage people who want to discuss the underlying themes that are in it. Remember God's Kingdom is a Kingdom that cannot be shaken!