Tuesday, June 15, 2010

George Washington and Cursing

I ran across a quote by George Washington that was very insightful...thought I would share:

"The foolish and wicked practice of profane cursing and swearing is a vice so mean and low that every person of sense and character detests and despises it."

Profanity has been around nearly as long as language itself, and it shows no sign of going away anytime soon. Vulgarity is everywhere: billboards, books and magazines, all over the web, music, everyday conversations, and especially movies and TV.

We all have that little voice inside us that lets us no something isn't right about cursing and swearing. Our wisdom, attitude, and character determines whether or not we make the choice to curse/cuss. When one chooses to use profanity, it's usually one of the following:

  • a sign of ignorance (such as the child who repeats what they've heard or the immature adult who is speaking without thinking)
  • a sign of rebellion (like the teenager who likes getting away with it or the criminal who curses an officer)
  • or a sign of insecurity (like the singer who uses it because they feel it's the only way they can reach their audience or the debater who uses it in as a method of intimidation).

There are other cases of course, but these are the most common reasons people will curse. As a youth minister I was often asked, "Is it a 'sin' to cuss?" Hmmm. Does the Bible really say that we're not supposed to? The answer is "yes." The Bible speaks very clearly about our speech, and how it should be used. Since we only have a limited amount of space, let me share this verse with you:

"Let no unwholesome word come out of your mouth..." (Ephesians 4:29)

"...from the same mouth comes blessing and cursing. Brothers this ought not to be this way..." (James 3:10

Jesus said it's not what goes into a man that defiles him, but what comes out (Matthew 15:11). There are several more verses you can find them by clicking here.

All this is to say that God has given us speech and words as a way to communicate, and even moreso to build each other up (Ephesians 4:29). So, today let's build someone up; encourage them. And if you have that bad habit of cursing, the grab these verses above and let them be your "weapon" against profanity. Learn and memorize them. When the time is right, you'll know it, and you'll be able to use your secret weapon. It's amazing the power in God's Word.

Praying these words have built you up...


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Don't Drink the Sand

Galatians 1:3

"Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ..."

What is listed above is Paul's greeting to the church in Galatia. It was very common for Paul to introduce himself in his letters and then grant the blessings of "grace and peace." In fact when he addressed the Believers in Corinth, Phillipi, Ephesus, and Thessalonica, he uses this phrase, and almost always follows it with a reference of God and Christ.

Because it is so common in his writings, and since it's just a part of the greeting many skip over the statement not realizing the importance. But, I would like to remind us about 2 we learn from the Scriptures:

1. Grace comes before peace. We could never experience the peace of God without first realizing and accepting the grace of God.

2. Grace and peace comes from God through Christ. We may try to look to other things to give us the satisfaction and peace we desire, but true peace only comes from God through a relationship with Christ.

When we try to quench our thirst by looking to other things (alcohol, entertainment, money, success, sexual immorality, etc.), we are basically "drinking sand." What happens if you were to drink sand? Your thirst isn't quenched, it's intensified and compounded. And so it is when we try to find peace outside of God's grace given through Christ.

Jesus told the woman at the well, "...whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

In the spirit of Paul and the Gospel, I pray that you will let Jesus quench your thrist. I pray we will all experience the blessings of grace and peace from God that comes through a relationship with Jesus Christ.

On the Journey Together,


Happy Father's Day

Another special day is just around the corner, and I'm sure you've been marketed to enough to know what day it is--Father's Day. Around America this weekend, we'll pause and say thanks to our dads. For most, they'll appreciate them a little extra and end the day a little closer than before.

me and dad.jpgI'm a rebel at heart and like to go against the grain when I can, but I would definitely be amiss if I didn't join the celebration and do the same. So, I'd like to say thanks to my dad. Thanks for working those long days and nights on the oil rigs and cotton gins. Thanks for showing me how to mow the yard, for putting up the basketball goal for me, and carrying me fishing and hunting. Thanks for accepting Christ and striving to be a godly man. Thanks for using the "leather" when I needed it. (I can't believe I just said that!) Thanks, most of all, for loving me. You haven't been the perfect dad (and I definitely haven't been the perfect son), but your love has always been authentic and genuine and for that I'm eternally grateful.


As I pause to say a prayer of thanks for and blessings over my own dad, I'm reminded of the thousands of people whose Father's Day won't be a day of celebration, but a time of mourning or anxiety. Many of our nation's fathers are fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Some have given their lives in the process. Some fathers will be in the hospital. Some will be at work. And, for whatever reason, some will fathers will be away from their families, on their own accord.

For those who won't be recognizing their earthly fathers this Sunday (and even for those who will), may I remind and encourage you to remember our Heavenly Father and His love for us. We have an (Abba) Father who loves us and will never leave or forsake us. He's never too tired, never too weary, and He always cares. He will draw near to you, when you draw near to Him. He will answer when you call; He's there to protect and guide you.

The Bible also says:

"A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling." (Psalm 68:5)

We all have a father who loves us. So let's celebrate our earthly dads and our Heavenly Father! Praise be to God!

Thankful for our fathers and our Father,