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    How to Establish the Truth

    HOW can we ESTABLISH the TRUTH? 

    God has not left us to guess whether certain things are right or wrong.

    Three connected parts are necessary to establish the truth.

    1. OBJECTIVE – separate from any personal feelings, situations, or opinions
                 (Deuteronomy 32:4, Psalms 18:30-31)
    2. UNIVERSAL – applies to all people in all places
                 (Psalms 103:19, Psalms 97:5)
    3. CONSTANT - does not change with time…
                (Isaiah 40:28, Ecclesiastes 3:14)

    The Source of Truth can be found in only in God!

    John 14:6

    There are basic elements of truth that can always be counted on no matter what I feel, no matter where I am, and no matter what my age!

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    Put down your phone

    12 WAYS YOUR PHONE IS CHANGING YOU by Tony Reinke

    Interesting chapter titles says it all...  What do you think?

    1 We Are Addicted to Distraction  . . . . . . 41

    2 We Ignore Our Flesh and Blood . . . . . . 55

    3 We Crave Immediate Approval . . . . . . .65

    4 We Lose Our Literacy . . . . . . . . . . . . . .79

    5 We Feed on the Produced . . . . . . . . . . 91

    6 We Become Like What We “Like” . . . . .109

    7 We Get Lonely . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . . . 119

    8 We Get Comfortable in Secret Vices . . .131

    9 We Lose Meaning . . . . . . . .  . . . . . . . . .145

    10 We Fear Missing Out . . . . . . . . . . . . .153

    11 We Become Harsh to One Another  . . . .163

    12 We Lose Our Place in Time . . . . . . . . . .177

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    Lent - Mardi Gras Tuesday - Ash Wednesday - Self Denial - Fish - Easter - Gospel Story

    LENT(Old English for Spring) is a 40-day period (before Easter, excluding Sundays) of fasting and repentance culminating in the celebration of Holy Week. LENT began by early Christians in an effort to identify with biblical 40 day periods of trial and fasting(Genesis 7:12, Exodus 34:28, Numbers 13:25, Numbers 14:34, 1 Samuel 17:16, 1 Kings 19:8, Luke 4:2, Acts 1:3)leading up to Easter. The Lenten season beacons us to deepen our understanding and appreciation for the abundant grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ's saving work on the cross.

    MARDI GRAS Pre-Lenten celebrations (Carnival, Festival)culminate with FAT TUESDAY(Mardi Gras in French or Shrove Tuesday)the day before Ash Wednesday. Since Christians have often chosen or been taught to fast from all sweet food during Lent, including milk, eggs, and meat, the traditional dinner on this night is pancakes to use up their milk and eggs and syrup so there won't be any of the tempting stuff around during Lent. Many have mutated this season as an excuse for indulgence before the fast. It is often looked on as one last “binge” before having to give something up for 40 days. These celebrations foster the unscriptural notion that you can do whatever you want on Fat Tuesday, as long as you show up in church on Ash Wednesday.

    ASH WEDNESDAYbegins the Lenten season and is six and a half weeks before Easter every year. Ash Wednesday isthe tradition (not a requirement)of putting ashes on the forehead in the form of a cross as a sign of humility and recognition of our own sin (the ashes usually come from the dried and burned palms from Palm Sunday the year before). "From dust you came, and to dust you shall return. Turn from your sin and receive the good news." By reminding ourselves of our need and willfully submitting to Christ's authority, we prepare our heart to celebrate Easter with a renewed sense of joy and amazement!

    Many equate LENT with SELF DENIALand give up something enjoyable (like meat or chocolate or movies)for the 40 days as a way of focusing more intently on the meaning of the season. While there is certainly nothing wrong with preparing for Easter through some form of self-denial or intentional good works, it is important to realize that these will not win us God's favor, earn special blessing, or increase His love for us. God’s love for us could not be any greater than it already is! If you plan to give up something, please make sure to use the margin created to grow in love and appreciation with Christ. Remember the Lenten season is about preparing the heart; so, if you plan to give up something, then make plans to REPLACE it with something that would turn your heart more toward Christ! Maybe take the challenge to read the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John), memorize certain scriptures, or read the Purpose Driven Life daily devotional book during Lent. (free YouVersion Bible App for reading plans & FighterVerse App for scripture memory)

    FISH Catholic traditions often practice various acts of penitence and spiritual self-discipline during Lent. One of those disciplines is a fast that requires Catholics to abstain from meat on Fridays during Lent. The rule is based on the authority of the Church, not on the authority of Scripture. The stated reason for Catholics not being allowed to eat meat on Fridays during Lent is to remind the faithful that Jesus died on a Friday. Jesus gave up His body (His flesh), and Catholics, in an effort to attain greater communion with Christ, refrain from consuming flesh.

    EASTER  Christians celebrate Easter as the resurrection of Christ on the third day after His crucifixion. It is the oldest Christian holiday and the most important day of the church year because of the significance of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the events upon which Christianity is based(1 Corinthians 15:3-4,14). The four Gospels make it clear that Jesus was crucified in conjunction with the Jewish Passover (Matthew 26:17-19; Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-15; John 18:28,39; 19:14). The four Gospels also make it clear that Jesus was raised from the dead three days later, on the first day of the week (Matthew 28:1; Mark 16:2,9; Luke 24:1; John 20:1,19). Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox. Whether we call it “Easter” or “Resurrection Sunday,” what is important is the reason for our celebration, which is that Christ is alive, making it possible for us to have eternal life (Romans 6:4)!

    GOSPEL STORY[BAD NEWS]Since SIN is any thought, attitude, word, or action that falls short of God’s perfect, holy standard and deserves punishment, we are separated from the Source of LIFE and we ALL desperately need RESCUED! [GOOD NEWS]Love motivated Jesus Christ to step out of heaven and sacrificially give His innocent life on a bloody cross for the just punishment of our sin and also conquer sin’s penalty (death) by victoriously rising from the grave! [Romans 10:9-10][Ephesians 2:8-9]To reject this Gospel story is to condemn your self to death. To receive this Gospel story for your own is embracing LIFE!

    FMI – Questions – Share a Decision: northshorefamilychurch@gmail.com

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    Love and Respect

    Ephesians 5:33
    Let each one of you LOVE his wife as himself,
    and let the wife see that she RESPECTS her husband.

    The Language of Love & Respect
    Cracking the Communication Code with Your Mate
    Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

    MEN: How to Spell LOVE to Your Wife? COUPLE

    Closeness: She wants you to be close.

    Openness: She wants you to open up to her.

    Understanding: Don’t try to fix her; just listen.

    Peacemaking: She wants you to say, “I’m sorry.”

    Loyalty: She needs to know you’re committed.

    Esteem: She wants you to honor and cherish her.

    MEN:  You don’t motivate your wife to become more respectful by acting in unloving ways.  [Tony Evans] The less a woman feels appreciated, needed, and valued as an equal with you, the less responsive she will be following your functional lead as head in your house. 

    LADIES: How to Spell RESPECT to Your Husband? CHAIRS

    Conquest: Appreciate his desire to work and achieve.

    Hierarchy: Appreciate his desire to protect and provide.

    Authority: Appreciate his desire to serve and to lead.

    Insight: Appreciate his desire to analyze and counsel.

    Relationship: Appreciate his desire for shoulder-to-shoulder friendship.

    Sexuality: Appreciate his desire for sexual intimacy.

    LADIES: You don’t motivate your husband to become more loving by complaining and criticizing to get what you want.  The less a man feels respected, the less motivated he will be to want to treat you well, love you, and be good to you.

    [got ?'s quote] God’s commands for husbands and wives are not conditional. Submission is not contingent upon love, and love is not contingent upon respect. Taking the first step in obedience, regardless of the actions of the other, goes a long way to breaking down the conflict and establishing new patterns of behavior.

    LADIES: What would you think of a man that is consumed with CHRIST and empowered to LOVE you and your family with the self-sacrificial love of Christ?

    MEN:  What would you think of a lady that is consumed with CHRIST and honors your position as husband with endless respect?

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Aggie Experience

I've always heard about the tradition and atmosphere surrounding Texas A&M, but have never experienced it myself until the 2010 A&M / Nebraska football game.

My friends, the Abel's & family, were naturally excited about introducing me to their passion.  The adventure began with planning to leave at 11:30am for the 7:00pm game kickoff.  We toured the campus, got our official "maroon out" shirts, went to the player walk-in (a pre-pep rally) with the F-16 fighter fly-by, band sound off, corp line-up, and on through a sea of tailgating fans in route to the stadium.  We immediately were handed growl towels after getting in the gate.  All ages were together as one.

As we surveyed the area from the top of the stadium before heading down to our seats on the 10th row, I couldn't help but think... this is what church should be like.

Yell leaders strategically positioned around the stadium united the massive crowd in one voice.  My leg was pushed in front as people throughout linked arms on shoulders to sway to a familiar cheer.  I couldn't get the songs out of my head for days!  There was much more to the football game, band, crowd, and storming the field after an intense battle for victory just to celebrate.  I couldn't get it out of my mind... this is what church should be like.

I could have been dropped off in the city and found my way to the game myself.  I know football and would have enjoyed the game by myself... BUT it could not have matched being guided through the experience from someone who knew all the background and was excited about sharing it.  Again... that is what church should be like.

Acts 15:19, “...we should not make it difficult for the Gentiles who are turning to God.”

You can't come in contact with the Gospel... Cross... Relationship with Jesus... without serious struggle - something we all must give account.  Yet, we are reminded of the Peace in knowing Christ personally and the Joy in sharing His love with those around us.

What other positive lessons could we apply in the church that we see demonstrated at a ball game?

4 comments (Add your own)

1 Stacey - Sat, January 15, 2011 @ 9:23 AM

Rockin!!!
2 Mike Jones - Sun, January 16, 2011 @ 3:59 PM

Good Post Josh! Miss you guys, wish we were there today!

Your website looks great. Just need a blurb about the Pastor!
3 Lowery - Thu, January 20, 2011 @ 8:25 AM

Josh, it was nice to meet you that weekend. I enjoyed our conversation on the way to the game! Your blog reminded me of a lesson I did for a group of students in Houston. In the lesson I displayed a personal collection of over 60 pieces of clothing that I own with "Texas A&M" referenced somewhere on it. Plus another 40 or so other items. It's obvious I have a passion for Texas A&M. Shouldn't I have the same passion for our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ? Just another way that the Kyle Field atmosphere you witnessed that day should be like church. We should all be so bold, outspoken, excited and unafraid in our responsibility to the Gospel. What a change we could make!
4 Dana Fryar - Thu, January 20, 2011 @ 11:53 AM

Web site page is great! Very excited to read about it! Tell everyone a little bit about you & your family. Love you guys,
Dana & Mamaw

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