The truth is that I can’t wait to spend some time this Sunday with everyone looking at John 21 and the resurrection record in the text. Jesus shows up on the beach and grills fish and bread for hungry seamen, especially three noteworthy characters: Peter, Thomas, and Nathanael. More about them on Sunday. It’s been a joy to dwell in that passage this week and go back through the commentaries on John as well. I probably have 30 or more commentaries and several more studies about this Gospel, including sermon collections.
Here’s a Pastor that has some wonderful messages on John and should always be read before crafting sermons for that Gospel: James Boice. They’re beautiful, biblical, and pastorally wise. Don’t imagine for a second that his expositions are overly technical and impenetrable, academic exercises for specialists. Far from that kind of necessary but frequently arid kind of book, Boice’s sermons are just that: sermons for everybody. You can purchase the volume easily and inexpensively and I have no doubt you’ll benefit from his gracious, Christ-exalting work. The new paperback edition is costly. The old, single volume hardback volume is not.
Speaking of Jesus at the beach, I’m going. Soon. It’s time for some rest and refreshing in the presence of the Lord – and the fact that he sanctified sand by his presence at the seashore means I can be led by the Spirit to be there and enjoy it. Picnic on the beach – holy activity right there!
Couple projects in the mix. The first is a Christianity 101 and the other is the Holy Spirit project.
In the aftermath of the recent Executive Order issued by the President addressing the legality of a Church’s right endorse political candidates, I’ve written a brief blog post on the Church and politics. Here it is: http://pastordavidcassidy.com/politics-and-the-church/
As you know, I deplore Churches endorsing candidates and parties, cherish the capacity to challenge candidates and office-holders on issues, and expect the Church to de-politicize its message, creating an environment in which the Gospel is front and center for all. The Church’s moral instruction is for its members, and we make no apologies for it; that said, we are not here to be the moral police for the rest of society: we make the case for our view of various matters, but we’re not looking to the state to make that view normative for all, either by judicial fiat or legislative action. If in a free society a Christian view is upheld in civil law it cannot simply be the result of a political power play. It must be the result of the Christian view winning the day because its wisdom in securing the common good has been agreed to by the wider society. The Church is a serving presence in society, not a power broker; we are not chaplains to a political agenda or party, whether on the left or the right.
There’s an exhausting level of political activity going on in our culture right now. I almost feel sorry for reporters, though it seems good for job security.
Jim is the owner-operator of Merridees in downtown Franklin, which is just the most tasty, wonderful place. Jim quietly and faithfully makes Franklin a better place to live and his church a better place to worship. I’m very thankful for his example and service to his community and to the people he’s called his church family for many years. Drop by there sometime and embarrass him a little by saying, “Thank you, Jim!”
As a Texas fan, I have a predisposition to despise Oklahoma. That doesn’t mean I can’t applaud the musical of the same name, and I will later today when I visit Franklin Christian Academy and see their performance of the famed Rogers and Hammerstein production.
There are some wonderful educational opportunities in the area, including some great Christian schools. FCA is among them, with several staff and students in attendance at C3. I am thankful for them, and for all who serve in education, both public and private.
Lost last night, but still lead the series 3-2. Let’s see if they can wrap this up in the next get together with the Blues. Go Preds!
Yes, I have a tattoo and yes, it is large. It’s on my left arm and celebrates the Cubs winning the World Series. Waiting 108 years made excessive celebration seem the only sane thing to do. It has the iconic Cubs ‘C’ over a background of Wrigley Field bricks, surrounded by Wrigley Field Ivy. On top is inscribed “Eamus Catuli”, Latin for ‘Go Cubs’, and at the base is ‘2016’. There’s room to mark additional championship years. That said, they’re not exactly playing like they’ll win it all just yet. Maybe I should get chef knives on my other arm?
Fellowship of the Bean
My favorite cup of coffee this past week was at The Good Cup. The ‘Utopia’ blend is perfectly balanced and hits the spot for mid-morning meetings. Man, I wish their wifi connection was better there, but apart from that, it’s not a bad spot, so long as you don’t mind everyone in the place being part of your private conversations.
Greg is a PCA Pastor in Austin and has been a friend for several years now. He’s also a smart guy and reads ancient near eastern languages like I read the ESPN website. He’s written a solid review of the Report from the Ad Interim Study Committee on the Ministry of Women in the Church, a report which will be the subject of deep debate at this years PCA General Assembly, meeting in June. I’ve asked Greg to fly up here and do an overview of the report for our C3 Leadership Community on May 24th.That’s going to be helpful!
Here’s one I listen to every week: The “Q” podcast with Franklin’s own Gabe Lyons. Q’s purpose is “to see Christians, especially leaders, recover a vision for their historic responsibility to renew and restore cultures.” The website goes on to note, “Inspired by Chuck Colson’s statement, ‘Christians are called to redeem entire cultures, not just individuals,’ Gabe set out to reintroduce Christians to what had seemed missing in recent decades from an American expression of Christian faithfulness; valuing both personal and cultural renewal, not one over the other. Re-educating Christians to this orthodox and unifying concept has become central to the vision of Q.”
From guests who are leaders in virtually every field of human endeavor to discussions on everything from the marijuana and the transgender debate to politics and the practices of healthy churches, you won’t be disappointed and you will most certainly be challenged and better informed. Q’s motto is ‘Stay Curious, Think Well, Advance the Good.’ That’s beautiful. I am thankful for Gabe and his excellent work. You’ll love this podcast.
Look up ‘Q’ on your podcast search, sign up for the feed, and start learning. You may see a subject you want to tuck into, but my favorite talks recently have been with Greg Thompson on ‘Six Practices’.
Praying Over Graduating Seniors
That’s Sunday at C3. Always moving, always inspiring. Thankful for each of these beautiful lives.
Things I Think
1. I think if it’s 47 degrees in Franklin, Tennessee while Bozeman, Montana checks in at 73 degrees, and it’s May 5, something funky is going on.
2. I think I need a garage sale.
3. I love a clean garage but the satisfaction is very short-lived. It’s like a clean pantry: no one EVER puts anything back where it belongs
4. I think David Filson is the most dedicated Presbyter in know and we could all learn from his example
5. Yokohama tires are the worst tires ever. You’ve been warned. Trust me on this.
6. Read Senator Ben Sasse’s new book. https://www.amazon.com/Vanishing-American-Adult-Coming-Crisis/dp/1250114403/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494075611&sr=8-1&keywords=sasse
7. I met Sen Ben when he was a member of Redeemer Pres in Austin when I served there. I had lunch with him at The Tavern on North Lamar one sunny day as he and his wonderful family were just joining the church. He was teaching UT back then. We were about three minutes into the conversation when I realized I was talking to a future President of the United States. Said so that day. He’s a brilliant and devoted public servant, gracious family man, and Nebraska should be proud to call him a native son.
8. Marty Camplair is an extraordinary servant at C3. There’s nothing he won’t tackle and his deep love for Jesus and people inspires me every day. When I grow up I want to be as godly as that guy.
9. I am teaching through Romans on Wednesdays over the next two years, starting in September. Fools rush in. Augustine set out to write a commentary on Romans and gave up after seven verses. Not seven chapters. Seven verses! But I’m going to teach it? Okie dokie then. Can’t wait, mostly because I hope to learn a lot as I go.
10. I think May is the new December and the busyness is off the chain.
11. I think there’s a point of diminishing return on events in downtown Franklin. I love my little town and get why everyone comes to visit. But hey, when you tell me 100K are expected over the weekend (as last weekend during Main Street), I cringe. And I stay home.
12. I won’t miss Pilgrim Fest though
13. It’s Derby Day. Who ya got?
14. I think there are my fave cooking mags
a. Bon Appetit
c. Sur La Table Catalog
d. Food and Wine
e. Donna Hay
The Food Network mag is a mess. Don’t bother. So is the Food Network, it seems to me. You’ll learn a lot more from Julia Child or Ina Garten on YouTube.
1. Not preaching in a Preds shirt again… unless they get to the Stanley Cup Finals. In which case I will have to spring for a ‘sweater’ and go all in.
2. Uncle Julios in Brentwood has this pinata dessert thing which is pretty dang awesome. You whack a chocolate sphere and good stuff pops out on a large platter with various sweet sauces into which said goodies plop. Win!
3. Air Travel nightmare stories from friends this week. Hey airline industry, get it together. Summer’s almost here.
4. Twitter is awesome.
5. Watched ‘Lion’ last night. What an astonishing film. SEE IT!!! Stick around for the credits and the message at the end. Powerful stuff.
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