June 2008


So … the time has come for me to change the name of this blog. “A Venture in Venice” is no longer going to cut it … since I’m no longer venturing in Venice. I picked out a new theme. Now I need a new title and picture. I’m at a loss on the title … I don’t have my good buddies Micah and Steve here with me to help me create one! Any suggestions??

Another quote from A Fight to the Death by Wayne and Joshua Mack:

“Sin is more than doing what we want. It is doing the exact opposite of what God wants. It is doing that which God hates. That is why it is so often called an abomination to God. Sin is disgusting to God.

To take is a step further, when we sin we are doing what the devil desires. God hates sin; Satan loves it. So by sinning, we are doing what God hates and what Satan loves. Thomas Watson explained, ‘Sin gratifies Satan. When lust or anger burn in the soul, Satan warms himself at the fire. Men’s sins feast the devil. . . . How he laughs to see people giving up their souls for the world, as if one should trade diamonds for straws. . . .’ ” (p. 30)

 

That quote from Thomas Watson is just amazing! There is so much that could be said about it. The last line reminds me of what C.S. Lewis said in his illustration of the child content to make mud pies when he was offered a holiday by the sea. Just like the child, we content ourselves with things that ultimately bring no satisfaction and are just plain stupid in comparison to what we are offered from the Lord.

 

These two paragraphs I quoted from the book really just take my breath away when I read them. Sin is not just doing what we want instead of what God wants us to do … it’s doing what He hates and what the Devil loves. How often do we think of sin in that way? How often do I think – “I am about to gratify Satan by doing ___________?”

 

Will you chose straw and mud pies or diamonds and a holiday by the sea today?

               

Last week, I started reading a book by Wayne Mack and Joshua Mack entitled A Fight to the Death. It is about fighting the sin within. I’m only through the first chapter, but what I have read so far is excellent. I wanted to share a quote from the book by Charles Spurgeon that deals with man’s depravity and the seriousness of sin.

“There are some professing Christians who can speak of themselves in terms of admiration; but, from my inmost heart, I loathe such speeches more and more every day that I live. Those who talk in such a boastful fashion must be constituted very differently from me. While they are congratulating themselves, I have to lie humbly at the foot of Christ’s Cross, and marvel that I am saved at all, for I know that I am saved. I have to wonder that I do not believe Christ more, and equally wonder that I am privileged to believe in Him at all – to wonder that I do not love Him more, and equally to wonder that I am not holier, and equally to wonder that I have any desire to be holy at all considering what a polluted, debased, depraved nature I find still within my soul, notwithstanding all that divine grace has done in me. If God were ever to allow the fountains of the great deeps of depravity to break up in the best man that lives, he would make as bad a devil as the devil himself is. I care nothing for what these boasters say concerning their own perfections; I feel sure that they do not know themselves, or they could not talk as they often do. There is tinder enough in the saint who is nearest to heaven to kindle another hell if God should but permit a spark to fall upon it. In the very best of men there is an infernal and well-nigh infinite depth of depravity. Some Christians never seem to find this out. I almost wish that they might not do so, for it is a painful discovery for anyone to make; but it has the beneficial effect of making us cease from trusting in ourselves, and causing us to glory only in the Lord.”

Charles Spurgeon, “Man’s Depravity.” Quoted in A.W. Pink, “The Christian in Romans 7,” www.pbministries.org/books/pink/Miscellaneous/romans_7.htm

When I was a Grace Community Church a couple weeks ago, Rick Holland preached an awesome message on Psalm 117. You can download his sermon here (5/25/08 “The Purpose for All People”), and/or read my notes below (I’d recommend listening to his message).

Psalm 117

“Praise the LORD, all you Gentiles!

Laud Him, all you peoples!

For His merciful kindness is great toward us,

And the truth of the LORD endures forever.

Praise the LORD!”

 

2 Exclamations to Recover the Motive for Missions:

 

1.       The Reach of God’s People is Universal

          “praise” comes the Hebrew word from which we get our word “Hallelujah;” it has the meaning in mind of “making bright”

          “laud” is to make boast in (esp. with singing)

          Combined, they mean to praise God with your life and your lips

          Every single human being is called upon to praise God

          Deut. 32:43; Psalm 150:6; Psalm 96:10; Isaiah 40:9

          Do you have a passion to see all peoples come to know Christ?

          Are you willing to sacrifice to go and be a part of it?

          What about you going?

          “Should I go?” is the wrong question. “Why shouldn’t I go?” is the right one!

          God’s praise is the reason to 1.) Go, 2.) Give, and 3.) Pray

2.       The Reasons for God’s Praise are Amazing

a.       God has colossal kindness

b.      God is eternally truthful

o   Every second, 3 people in the world die. We must prepare them for this!

          I Peter 2:9-10 = the reason we are saved is to proclaim His praises!

 

 

Last week I spent 5 days in Southern CA for my cousin’s graduation from the nursing program at Biola University. All of my dad’s family (except my parents) were able to go down, and we had a blast. My cousin, Heidi, and I got to “surf” (we didn’t actually get up. I almost got up the last time I went) at Hunnington Beach. This was so fun for me, because ever since I took a surfing lesson in Hawaii I have wanted to surf with my uncle at Hunnington Beach. He used to live down there and surf all the time … so this was really fun! And cold and salty and hard. 🙂 We spent a day at Disneyland, which was just wonderful! I love that place. Here’s a couple pictures of me and my cousins. A picture is worth a thousand words, so they should give an adequate idea of our time together. 🙂 And of course we attended Heidi’s nursing ceremony and graduation, which was quite exciting! Praise the Lord for His faithfulness to her! And we were so thankful for the Lord’s grace and strength for my aunt to make it down for this exciting weekend. Right before Easter she was diagnosed with cancer. We have all been praying and praying for her health and strength to make it through this week, and praise the Lord she did!

Here’s me and my darling cousin Andrew! Me, Andrew, and our Uncle Steve got to Disneyland before it opened – we basically had the park to ourselves for about an hour and a half. So great!

 Me and the cousins – our look of terror as we were facing possible death on Indiana Jones

Britt, Heid, and me before falling to our death on Tower of Terror

David, Heidi and me at her Pinning Ceremony – doesn’t she look so cute in her little nursing outfit.