Thoughts On Gideon’s Birthday

Gideon, my youngest child of three, turned one year old today. We sang, had cupcakes, and gave him a little something. While our simple festivities were going on it struck me that this birthday party looked very different than when my first child turned a year old. It seemed like such a big deal to me and my wife then such that we felt obligated (not in a bad way) to celebrate differently, to some, even appearing over the top.

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On Rahab

Rahab was not only adopted into the Church, she was not just tucked away into some obscure corner of history, like we probably will be, but she was called and chosen to be apart of the blood line of the Messiah. Faithful Rahab was in God’s mind as a part of the ancient promise that the seed of the women would crush the head of the dragon.

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Songs We Sing (11/2/14)

We will be learning a new song this week, O God of Earth and Altar. This hymn was written by G.K. Chesterton in 1906 for The English Hymnal as a prayer for the nation. Although written in a different century about a different nation, it is very much relevant for Christians in America today. Listen and learn and […]

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Songs We Sing (10/5/14)

We will be singing a new song this Lord’s Day. In the video below you will not only hear the song, Though You Slay Me; as an interlude, you will hear an excerpt of a sermon by John Piper entitled “Do Not Lose Heart“. The name of this song is taken from Job 13:15, “Though He slay […]

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One Child, One Image

If two men were building a house together, but they both held tightly to differing sets of blueprints, it would not be to the point to say that they still had much in common. They both own hammers, saws, nails, carpenter’s belts, and so on, and let us say that both of them were of […]

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Eternal Life

On Tuesday, July 1st, 2014, Adam and his brother Lou were working under his truck. Unfortunately they didn’t have it blocked up and the truck fell off the jack. The truck came down on both brothers. Thankfully Lou was able to walk away from the incident with only aches and pains. Adam on the other […]

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Songs We Sing (8/24/14)

Here are our songs for this Lord’s Day: Come Let Us Return Oh My God Jesus Paid It All Future Past You observant ones may recognize the song Future Past by John Mark McMillan as we frequently play his albums before and after service. We sing a good few of his songs and really enjoy his music. This […]

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Songs We Sing (8/10/14)

We will be singing a new song this week. “Thy Mercy, My God” is believed to be written by John Stocker and was first published around 1776. This forceful hymn has been beautifully retuned by Sandra McCracken. Listen and learn. Let its truth move you to the Father of mercies. Here are our songs for this Lord’s Day: Come Thou […]

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Songs We Sing (7/20/14)

We are learning a new song this week called Come Let Us Return. Listen to it below. Here are our songs for this Lord’s Day: Come Let Us Return Did You Feel The Mountains Peace On Earth Joy To The World

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A Greater Rest Than Noah

[Sermon from 7/13/14 at Christ Fellowship Church.]   Text: Genesis 8:20 – 9:28 The Bible is a collection of different books written by different authors spanning centuries and covering a period of centuries. Although the Bible is made up of different books and characters, it is important to understand that it makes up one single […]

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Songs We Sing (6/1/14)

This week we will be singing a new song called, All Glory Be To Christ. You will likely recognize the familiar Scottish folk melody borrowed from the song Auld Lang Syne. The reworked lyrics were written by Pastor Dustin Kensrue and the band who recorded it (in the video below) is Kings Kaleidoscope, both from Mars Hill Church. Enjoy […]

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Songs We Sing (5/11/14)

I know it is the middle of May and the weather here is anything but Christmas-like but this Lord’s Day we are going to sing a Christmas song—Hark! The Herald Angles Sing. What for? I’m glad you asked! For the precious promises, petitions and proclamations that are found there. I am certain, when you mind all of Charles […]

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Here are our songs for this Lord’s Day: Seen A Darkness For The Beauty Of The Earth In Christ Alone Who Would True Valor See

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Songs We Sing (4/13/14)

Lord willing, we will be singing a new, old song over the next couple of weekends. The song is How Sweet And Awful Is The Place by Isaac Watts and it wrestles with undeserved, free grace that was granted us in spite of our rebellion and depravity. It is a call to magnify that grace in our […]

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Songs We Sing (4/6/14)

The following is from Mother Kirk: Essays On Church Life (p. 134-135) written by Douglas Wilson. The issue of worship is crucial because, for good or ill, the Church leads the way in our culture… One of our problems is that we have confounded praise and worship. The definition of praise seems obvious, and fortunately, it is. […]

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Concerning the Collection

[I have much gratitude for Pastor David Platt who recently preached through this very passage and from whose faithful work I gleaned much in preparing this sermon.]     .  .  . Text: 1 Corinthians 16:1-4 This Lord’s Day as we approach the end of 1 Corinthians, we come to what is apparently the last […]

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Songs We Sing (3/9/14)

Enjoy this, as you ask God to soften and stir your heart to sing. Here are our songs for this Lord’s Day: Everything Seen A Darkness O Lord You’re Beautiful Give Us Clean Hands Be Thou My Vision

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Songs We Sing (3/2/14)

Hear the words of Psalm 73, a psalm of Asaph: Truly God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart. But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled, my steps had nearly slipped. For I was envious of the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. For they have no pangs until death; […]

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Songs We Sing (2/23/14)

O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods. In his hand are […]

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Songs We Sing (2/16/14)

Someone once said, worship isn’t music just like love isn’t kissing but where there is worship, there will be singing just like where there is love, there will be kissing. Music is a means. Our songs are avenues to express the beauty and awe and wonder and majesty of who God is and what He […]

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Songs We Sing (2/2/14)

This Lord’s Day we will be singing a new song. It may sound tricky at first, but you’ll get it. Listen to the video below for practice. Here are our songs: That Where I Am In Christ Alone 10,000 Reasons Who Would True Valor See

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Children and Covenant

UPDATE: Articles 7 and 8 in the series have been added. I came across a series over at by a gentleman named Luke Welch. In these articles, he is laying out  a strong (and easy to follow) case for covenant theology, specifically the inclusion of our children in the covenant and therefore the sacraments, both baptism […]

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Songs We Sing (1/19/14)

“Worship is the act of ascribing ultimate value to something in a way that energizes and engages your entire being.” – Tim Keller   Worshipping is essentially a cyclical process of giving and receiving. We ascribe ultimate value to The One who is supremely worthy and in doing so we are validated and fulfilled and […]

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Songs We Sing (1/12/14)

This week we are learning a new song. ‘And Can It Be That I Should Gain’ written in 1738 by Charles Wesley. Below you can hear Maddy Prior singing it. Listen to it. Learn it. And let’s sing it together. Here are our songs for this Lord’s Day: Christ Is Risen, He Is Risen Indeed Feels […]

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The Night Before Christmas

At the beginning of this series, we started by establishing that Christmas didn’t start with the pregnant virgin Mary and the birth of Christ. Christmas began in Eden, in the garden. We then looked at Isaiah’s prophecy to try and better understand what the incarnation was; what Christmas really was and did and is going […]

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Gideon’s Baptism Exhortation

This Lord’s day Ej and I baptized our new baby, Gideon. Our church is non-denominational and has been historically credobaptist. After having to baptize my first two sons in private ceremonies the leadership finally agreed to allow the households to decide the matter for themselves rather than exclude families based on this particular belief. I am so grateful […]

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He Can’t Be Serious

Text: Isaiah 9:1-7  [L]et us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire. (Hebrews 12:28, 29) Sovereign Father, let my words be true. Let this sermon be glorifying to You. Magnify Your Gospel […]

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Be Merry

Merry Christmas. So much more than a greeting or a salutation. Merry Christmas is code for “The Child has been born, the Savior King is alive. He is reigning and His Kingdom is increasing. And nothing and no one can stop it or slow it. He is coming again and I want you to know […]

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Can an infant be a Christian?

As my wife and I get ready to meet and baptize our soon coming little boy, these are some of the thoughts rolling around in my head. We are pedobaptist. We baptize our children as infants, welcoming them into the covenant. I do this because I believe Biblically they are to be counted as members […]

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Songs We Sing (11/10/13)

As if we didn’t already have more than enough reason to celebrate this Lord’s day, it happens that the Sunday marks the birth of the great reformer, Martin Luther, who randomly shares the day with our very own future reformer, my son, Noah Elliot. So raise a glass and thank your Father who has given […]

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Songs We Sing (11/3/13)

This Lord’s day will be the 44th Sunday of 2013. That means there are only 8 more Sundays in this year! This means that it has been roughly 2014 years since the birth of Christ. That may seem like a long time ago, until you think about those 43 Sundays of 2013 that are now […]

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Songs We Sing (10/27/13)

Happy Reformation Sunday! In honor of the day and in gratitude to God who sovereignly shone the light and guided faithful men to rediscover the truth of the gospel. We are going to sing the song that was dubbed the “Battle Hymn of the Reformation.” From Tim Challies: Based on Psalm 46, the hymn is […]

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Songs We Sing (10/6/13)

A couple quick notes on our songs for this week. I want to plot a road map of sorts in your mind so as we sing through these you can hopefully have a better idea of where we are and where we are going and that it would help you to worship better. We are […]

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On Worship 2

Don’t miss the first installment of this series: On Worship 1. If you would like to listen to this sermon or other past sermons, you can find them at Finally, I want to express how very grateful I am for Tim Keller, John Piper, David Platt, and Doug Wilson who’s books, studies, sermons, and blogs regarding worship have been […]

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On Worship

Unfortunately we didn’t capture the audio of todays sermon, but here is the manuscript.  Over the next two weeks we are going to be talking about worship. My goal for this week is for us to develop a more solid understanding of what it is to worship and how we are to worship properly. And […]

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Songs We Sing (9/8/13)

We are going to be singing There Is A Hope again this week so if you need to become more familiar with it in order to confidently sing along, please take some time and listen to it between now and then. Below you will find a video of the song or if you’d like, you can buy […]

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Songs We Sing (9/1/13)

We are going to learn a new hymn this week—There Is A Hope by Stuart Townend. The video is below, so please take some time to listen and familiarize yourself with it. The lyrics are potent. Here are our songs: That Where I Am Let Us Love and Sing and Wonder There Is A […]

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Songs We Sing (8/18/13)

Below are our songs for this Lord’s day. You will notice I did not include sheets to “Let it Rain” and “Awesome God” as those are both unusually short and easy. Did You Feel The Mountains Tremble Let It Rain Awesome God Come Thou Fount You Have Redeemed My Soul

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Songs We Sing (7/28/13)

Hear the words of David from the 32nd Psalm. Listen and obey. Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the LORD counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning […]

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Can’t Dance The Forgiveness Tango Alone

Many people misunderstand forgiveness. What follows is a concise excerpt from Douglas Wilson’s book, For A Glory And A Covering: A Practical Theology For Marriage (p. 94-95). It deals with one commonly misunderstood aspect, that forgiveness is a transaction. In other words, it’s not possible to dance the forgiveness tango alone. Forgiveness comes from someone whose heart is […]

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Songs We Sing (7/7/13)

Q: How could a loving God send anyone to Hell? A: How could He not? Everyone knows God. If you believe your bible, you must believe that. What this means then is that, like the scriptures teach, all unbelievers are without excuse and they suppress the truth. Every individual, who dies without believing the gospel […]

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Songs We Sing (6/30/13)

The Lamb was slain to make straight crooked things; to recreate! His Kingdom is here! He’s ransomed His people! Worthy blood has won! Weep no more, the Lion has come for peace on earth and goodwill to men! How can we keep from singing? Here are our songs for this week: Hearts Bleed In Christ […]

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What is the point of preaching to the lost if God already knows who will accept or reject Him?

Recently in my immediate circles, there have been many discussions regarding predestination. What the word means. What it may or may not imply about God’s character and nature. What it implies about salvation and so forth. There are many facets of God’s sovereignty that can and should be discussed by Christians in an effort to grow […]

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Songs We Sing (6/16/13)

Knowledge is scaleable. Truth that can fill volumes can be scaled down to fit on a bumper sticker or in a sound byte or in the 120 characters of a tweet. If you don’t believe me, just think of the universal Christian confession, Jesus is Lord. We can leave that truth claim to nothing more than […]

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Songs We Sing (6/9/13)

The year was 433 AD and it was Easter’s eve in northern Ireland. This particular evening before Easter also marked the beginning of the festival of Bealtine, a druidic festival, as well as the beginning of the spring equinox. Because of the significance of the night, the pagan King Leoghaire (pronounced “Leary”) decreed that no […]

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Exhortation To Learn To Die

After last Wednesday’s gathering I received a couple questions and comments about one of the songs we sang. “This doesn’t sound like a worship song. Why are we singing it in worship?” Good observations. So I thought I would take a moment and say a little something about it. The song is “Learning How To […]

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Songs We Sing (6/2/13)

Do you see that date up there? This year is almost half way through! Let that sink in for a moment… As you look over these songs we will be singing this weekend, take some time to reflect on your life. On the big picture and on a smaller, closer, more immediate level. This Sunday […]

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Songs We Sing (5/26/13)

I am sorry to have missed last week. I was out of state for a family wedding and consequently I didn’t get to post our songs either. While Ej and I are still out of town I am glad to have a chance to post the songs for this Lord’s day: 1. How Can I […]

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Merry Mother’s Day

With another Mother’s Day upon us, Jared Wilson recently quipped on twitter, “We love moms, so we’re gonna focus on Jesus this Sunday.” This witty line contains a much needed sentiment we in the church should all happily affirm. So go retweet it ASAP. Another good article in an ongoing series by Joe Carter, 9 Things You […]

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Songs We Sing (5/12/13)

Maybe you don’t like to sing loudly (or out loud for that matter), if that’s you, I encourage you to take some time this week and ask God search your heart and show you what it is inside that keeps you from “singing loud for all to hear” as our friend Buddy the elf would […]

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Prayer For Media

Our Father in Heaven, You are most worthy of all praise. Your word and Your world teach us that You have made everything for its purpose even the wicked for the day of trouble. We believe this. We look at the right leaning bias and the left leaning bias in the media today; we hear […]

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Songs We Sing (5/5/13)

This is the first in what will hopefully become a weekly series where I will post the songs we will be singing for both our mid-week gathering and our Lord’s day gathering. I mean for it to accomplish at least a few things: 1) It will supply you with the lyrics so you can all […]

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Do Likewise

As parents it is our natural disposition to protect our children. Obviously, this is not a bad thing. We can all recall instances, whether as a parent or a child, where we have experienced first hand this parental instinct. However, because we are all sinners by nature, this good and beneficial instinct, like the rest […]

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Jealous much?

If you feel that Jesus’ parable about the workers in the vineyard from Matthew 20 is unfair, perhaps thinking of it in the following way could help. Imagine you are one of the first shift, at the end of the day you will be paid 20 million dollars for your measly days work. In fact, […]

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What About Tomorrow

Twenty children were brutally murdered today by a cowardly monster. All kinds of folks from a whole slew of political and ideological persuasions are weeping all over our nation and rightfully so. Flags fly at half-mast for these 20 children. No matter who we are or what we believe, we should in no way minimize […]

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Simply Be Happy

Here is a little something I wrote for my Mom on her birthday back in 2009. I still mean it. ………………………………………………………………………………………………… Mother, dear mother I desire to take this time To pronounce this rhyme To use this sheet for my Heart to speak Words not of excellence (For which you are known for instance) Rather […]

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Reformation Sunday Exhortation

As we prepare to come to the Lord’s table, I want you to think about Taylor and the surrounding communities that we come from. Do you have hope that the Gospel will triumph here? Do you really believe (like feel-it-yin-your-bones kind of believe) that the light of the Kingdom will conquer this present darkness? It […]

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On Controversy

So apparently I’m a little late to this party but I just realized that John Newton is a calvinist. This doesn’t surprise me given the hymns he’s written (i.e. Amazing Grace, Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken, Let Us Love and Sing and Wonder, etc.) but to my credit, any Christian sounds like a calvinist when they stick […]

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Context Matters

I am not a minister in New York City. I am not a minster in a college town or on a college campus. I am a minister in a small rural community in central Texas called Taylor. Here, the opium of the masses is apathy. Apathy as opposed to equally seductive intellectualism. Of course I’m […]

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A Dead Baby Is A Dead Baby

A recent case of forced abortion in China outraged the international community, which only serves to show our hypocrisy. If we remember to take the child into account, all abortions are forced abortions. Sometimes, as in China, the mother and child are both coerced. Other times, as practiced in America, only the child is. But […]

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Triumphant Lamb

In light of recent events, it just doesn’t seem appropriate to celebrate our independence from tyranny. Any such celebration would be a charade as we the people are being relentlessly tyrannized by an overreaching government that believes its power and authority to be unlimited. However, hope is not lost, I believe reformation is at hand. […]

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Unfortunate Father’s Day

For some of you fathers with less than desirable wives, a happy father’s day is going to be impossible. I pity you and will pray. Let me be clear to avoid any unnecessary offense and to further level offense with a bit more precision, what I mean by “less than desirable” would be a wife […]

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Only God Can

Go out and open [blind] eyes. Don’t stop because you can’t do this. Of course you can’t. Only God can open the eyes of the blind (2 Cor. 4:6). But the fact that you can’t make electricity or create light never stops you from flipping light switches. The fact that you can’t create fire in […]

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Don’t Be Like Cain

Cain didn’t kill Abel simply because Cain was evil. He killed him because the contrast between Abel’s goodness and Cain’s evil made Cain angry. It made him feel guilty. Abel didn’t have to say anything; Abel’s goodness was a constant reminder to Cain that he was evil. And instead of dealing with his own evil […]

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If you don’t love God…

If you don’t love God, and you can’t do anybody any ultimate good. You can feed them clothe them and house them and keep them comfortable while they perish. But in God’s mind, that by itself is not what love is. Love does feed and clothe and house—and keeps the commandments that include helping others […]

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Puny Savior?

We have taken the infinitely glorious Son of God, who endured the infinitely terrible wrath of God and who now reigns as the infinitely worthy Lord of all, and we have reduced Him to a poor, puny Savior who is just begging for us to accept Him. Accept Him? Do we really think Jesus needs our […]

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This Is The Gospel

As long as you and I understand salvation as checking off a box to get to God, we will find ourselves in the meaningless sea of world religions that actually condemned the human race by exalting our supposed ability to get to God. On the other hand, when you and I realize that we are […]

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Contrasting Gospels

Note the contrast, however, when you diagnose the problem biblically. The modern-day gospel says, “God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life. Therefore, follow these steps, and you can be saved.” Meanwhile, the biblical gospel says, “You are an enemy of God, dead in your sin, and in your present state of […]

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Curse Of American Comfort

The Gospel reveals eternal realities about God that we would sometimes rather not face. We prefer to sit back, enjoy our clichés, and picture God as a Father who might help us, all the while ignoring God as a Judge who might damn us. This is why we fill our lives with the constant dribble […]

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A Cry To Unity

This article was originally written on September 12, 2010 by Jeff Ripple. His confession and exhortation for our church and the broader community of believers is eerily applicable in light of recent events surrounding Christ Fellowship Church. One thing many pastors struggle with is how to bring discipline to the body.  In our politically correct culture […]

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On The Recent Controversy

It has been said that those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. I believe this and I hope you do too. I would even take this idea a step further and add that those who cannot remember the past are condemned not only to repeat it but also to rewrite it. […]

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Easter Reflections

Easter the holiday has come and gone and while reflecting on the events that we commemorate with this special day, I had some thoughts start to buzz around. Nothing novel but interesting nevertheless. First, as I was mulling over the scriptures where these events are recorded for us, Luke 23:20 stuck out, “Pilate addressed them […]

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You must show that a man is wrong before you start explaining why he is wrong. The modern method is to assume without discussion that he is wrong and then distract his attention from this (the only real issue) by busily explaining how he became so silly. In the course of the last fifteen years […]

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A Defense of Calvinism

The following is taken from here and was written by Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892) who was a Calvinist although he preferred as do I, to be called a Christian. This article, while long gives a good overview of the doctrine.  “The old truth that Calvin preached, that Augustine preached, that Paul preached, is the truth that I […]

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Free Advice Friday:

If “God says something” to you and it turns out to be false, it wasn’t God saying something to you. And next time you “hear” that “voice” don’t listen. Now, to avoid confusion or unnecessary offense let me give you a brief example. If “God tells you” who is going to be the next P.O.T.U.S. […]

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Breastplate of St. Patrick

I arise today Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity, Through the belief in the threeness, Through confession of the oneness Of the Creator of Creation. I arise today Through the strength of Christ’s birth with his baptism, Through the strength of his crucifixion with his burial, Through the strength of his resurrection […]

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Justice Has Prevailed

Psalm 16:2 – “I say to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord; I have no good apart from You.’”  Ecclesiastes 7:20 – “Surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins.” Romans 7:18, 24-25 – “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to […]

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Objections Anyone?

Read this carefully, and I would appreciate your feedback. Please let me know if you agree or if and where you have quibbles. Here it is: Apart from the work of Christ you are completely helpless to save yourself. Christ came to save the world and accomplished that when He rose from the grave. This […]

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What’s In A Name?

I’ve been sitting on this one for a while now—thought perhaps it was a bit grating. But alas, I don’t care, to loosely echo Jefferson, a little ruckus now and then is a good thing. Let’s get things rolling with a quote something like this: “A convenience store approach to birth control is this generation’s […]

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Spiritual Gifts & Cessationism

Here is a good conversation and a much needed conversation. Doug Wilson interviews Mark Driscoll on the subject of spiritual gifts and cessationism. If you don’t know what cessationism is, don’t worry they’ll cover that in the video. If you don’t know what spiritual gifts are, you probably won’t find this video very helpful or […]

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Pastors As Painters

(John Calvin, Commentary On Galatians And Ephesians, Galatians 3:1-5) “To shew how energetic his preaching was, Paul first compares it to a picture, which exhibited to them, in a lively manner, the image of Christ.   But, not satisfied with this comparison, he adds, Christ hath been crucified among you, intimating that the actual sight of Christ’s […]

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Who Died And Made You King?

(C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, p. 51-52) “One part of the claim tends to slip past us unnoticed because we have heard it so often that we no longer see what it amounts to. I mean the claim to forgive sins: any sins. Now unless the speaker is God, this is really so preposterous as to be […]

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Conflict, may it never be…

by David Keen Where has the desire to avoid conflict, and tension in our relationships come from? A heartfelt desire to keep peace? Because peace is the most important thing, of course… Get the end, no matter the means, right? Or has the desire to avoid conflict, come from a lazy heart and/or a fear of admitting […]

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Faith of Jesus Christ

In studying different resources on Galatians, i ran across an article by Doug Wilson (one of my favorites) and found it very helpful and encouraging. I’d like to share the following excerpt with you. His exposition here covers Galatians 2:16-21. You can read the whole article here. What is meant by “the faith of Jesus Christ”? […]

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A Wet Noodle To A Sword Fight

Recently i instigated (rather sarcastically i should add) a logic discussion with someone who by their own admission isn’t a Christian. Now don’t throw up your hands at my insolence just yet. To my credit i didn’t know that at the time as he was making himself out to be a most authoritative and outspoken […]

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A Vision for Discipleship

(Guest post by Jeff Ripple my father and pastor on our church’s vision for discipleship.)  Christ Fellowship Church is called to impact the city of Taylor, surrounding area, and beyond, through discipleship that equips families and individuals to become an effective living witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In our vision to disciple families; […]

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The Sands Of Time Are Sinking

This Lord’s Day we’ll be singing a new song, and while new to our fellowship, this song has been around a good while. I thought it would be most enjoyable and helpful to introduce the song a bit more thoroughly before.     The Sands of Time are Sinking was written in 1854 by Anne Ross […]

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Critique Modern Youth Ministry

Just read a really good and helpful booklet—Critique of Modern Youth Ministry by Christopher Schlect. As i’ve been struggling and thinking much about “modern youth ministry” i’ve realized that there is so much that is assumed and not actually biblical. Here are a few of my favorite miscellanies from the essay. If you’d like to […]

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Sorry, it’s been so long…

Yesterday Ephraim was 6 months old. It’s hard to believe it’s been that long and yet i can’t very well remember life without him. It feels as though a lot has happened since i last posted; not even to mention the progress of the house. Ephraim’s rolled off the bed, we’ve vacationed in Trinidad, Colorado, […]

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Let there be lights!

Lately, our goal was to be able to safely turn breakers on, and therefore we have been hooking up outlets, switches, light fixtures and smoke alarms.  It is exciting to be able to walk through the house and turn on lights…  We were dreading having to buy ceiling fans because they are so expensive or […]

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Second wind’s struck!

A touch of grey on the walls of our house will serve our purposes spot on: to let the colors of home tell a story.  Everything’s painted and we’re humbled and ecstatic to finally be at this point.   This coming January will mark the one year aniversery since we broke ground.  It will also mark […]

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First Light

We have turned on the first light ever in the house! Also, we have Sheetrock taped and floated and ready for texture… We are getting really excited!

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Alas, we’ve made progress!

I know, i know, it’s been a while.  Something about being a dad is pulling me away from my other things like writing and even working on our house.  But alas, we have made progress and quite a bit at that—at least since the last time i posted…  We have sheetrock now! Also, i haven’t […]

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Water again.

We have water again! The water company moved our meter because it was on our neighbors property and we needed a bigger line. So after we finished plumbing and we tested everything, we called them to come move it. I just got the line put in yesterday. It’s actually kind of funny, we used a […]

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Smooth Words for Hard Hearts

The following is an excerpt from a book by Pastor Doug Wilson entitled Mother Kirk, Essays on Church Life. The chapter is “Thundering the Word” and this section is “Smooth Words for Hard Hearts”.  I believe this message is extremely relevant for us and i’m going to quote it verbatim.  The emphasis added is mine. “Much […]

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Coming right along…

Well, as you have probably guessed, i have been somewhat preoccupied hence my inattention to the blog.  The last three weeks have been an amazing time with our boy, he’s changing so fast.  He’s extremely content and sleeps pretty well for the most part, although he has his nights… We finally have insulation in.  It […]

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Getting ready for insulation!

Here’s what’s been going on with the house.  Electric inside is ready thanks to Terry Richardson and his gang, and we have ducts run upstairs.  We are using ductless units downstairs and in the apartment so those are pretty well ready.  Today a gentleman came out to bid the insulation, i already have a bid […]

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Water and Wire!

Last time i posted, (July 29th) i was eating my words, and i told you all we were ready for plumbing and wiring.  I am glad to announce that the plumbing for the entire house is complete. All we need is to install our water heater and we’re actually having the water company move the […]

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Another perspective…

Since Caleb is neglecting his blog, I’ve decided to update you all.  Now that all the framing is finally finished, (Caleb finished it about a week ago! yay!) we’ve moved on to plumbing.  Our contractor friend, has graciously recruited one of his employees to come over and guide Caleb through all the specifics of plumbing. […]

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Just dropping a quick line.

Well, i’m eating my words, technically, we are done with framing as in no more walls and ceilings but we aren’t totally ready for sheetrock, and i believe that is a big part of what framing entails. I am ok with where we are, now besides the few loose ends to tie up with framing, […]

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Just say it!

I’m going to step out on somewhat of a limb and go ahead and say it: i think we’ll be done with framing this week.  There it’s out there which means i will either have to eat those words or we will in fact be done.  This probably doesn’t seem that astonishing or even exciting […]

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My sweet angle.

Well we’re moving right along and like i’ve said, i am having a blast doing this stuff.  We have everything decked and turns out i bought about 6 or 7 sheets of plywood too many.  We got our stairwell celling up, the angle was tricky and we didn’t have to buy any more lumber for […]

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I would say that i’m a logical person.  Some say they see the glass half full other the glass half empty but there are those of us who would say, “well technically both are equally true”.  We’re sometimes labeled realist, but i prefer the label: Biblical. In the Bible what you’ll find is an infinite […]

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At least i don’t think so…

Tomorrow is the day that the cabinets (for the apt) will finally arrive home!  Today we ripped some more plywood for the tops and such, we cut the hole out for the sink and trimmed out a couple doors.  Fun stuff!  Like i said, these are only the kitchen cabinets for the apartment, we still […]

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Un dia a la vez…

I know what you’re thinking, twice in one week… It’s kinda like the old days—back when i started this blog… and i blogged. Well today was quite productive according to our standards of productivity.  As Ej would say, you guys are averaging one wall every two weeks, and i would say, gee you’re being fairly […]

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Just thinking

You know what i’ve been thinking a lot about lately? Infant baptism. Have you ever really thought about that topic? If so, i would love to hear some of your thoughts. If not, you should. If you are interested in doing a little reading on the subject, here are two articles one arguing for by […]

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God’s Tools.

No, i am not talking about pastors and evangelist or any believers for that matter. I’m talking about when evil things happen, when bad stuff happens we are all so quick to rebuke the devil and blame it on a fallen world and for some strange reason we, in those times, suddenly forget that God—the […]

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Truth isn’t Inconsistent.

Yesterday we were all sitting around on the porch and Ephraim (just so we are all clear, we pronounce it: *Efrum) was majorly rejoicing in his mommy’s belly.  We have seen him already moving around plenty in there but yesterday he was dancing like crazy.  Ej pulled her shirt up and we could all see him […]

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Part 3 of the Saga

Well as you can see there has been quite a bit of progress since the last post which is entirely because we hired two guys to get it started in here!  And turns out two guys who know what they are doing are actually quite fast… so i pretty much just get out of their […]

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The Framing Saga p2

This step (framing) has been a slow train coming but we are beginning to pick up momentum, with much thanks to Manny and his crew.  It is amazing how fast things can get accomplished when two guys who actually know this trade start working.  As you can tell from our last post we did build […]

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The framing saga begins…

Well we have begun framing which is pretty exciting, although frustrating at the same time.  I have been well informed by several people but i still am not at all confident in what i’m doing so my natural inclination is to drag my feet because of my uncertainty.  Nonetheless we are moving forward and with […]

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All dried in.

Drum roll please… the house is all dried in!  This is a good thing because my parent’s garage was literally filled to the max with only small trails between the immense amount of stuff.  Now it’s time to frame… I am pretty sure we’re ready…pretty sure. Here is what has been Spencer’s and my project […]

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A gen-u-ine operation!

Ok we went out of town this weekend, so i have a little catching up to do.  Thankfully, lots has been accomplished and we are moving right along at a fairly steady pace.  Enjoy the pics! Ok so here is the story on the wood.  Our gracious and EXTREMELY generous cousin Ardalia E. Martin and […]

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Where we are

Before we get on with the house news and pics, we found out what we are having yesterday, and let’s just say Ej has a little Chinese turtle named wang—it’s a boy!  Can’t wait to meet my boy Ephraim Alexander Ripple, yes we know, EAR, we think that’s cool! Moving right along, here is where […]

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Prone to Wander

Come Thou Fount Of Every Blessing is one of my absolute favorites songs we do.  Not only from the perspective of us playing it, but what it does to my heart when i do.  The lyric that for me is one of the most ‘cut you to the heart’ lyrics written is the line that […]

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Songs we sing!

Here are a couple of the songs from this weekend, you should enjoy them—we sure do!  (Even if the recording is subpar.) // Amazing Grace // You Have Redeemed my Soul

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Zeppelin hanger/Thimble

Today we have finally begun on the roof panels, it had to be really calm for them to get the first few down and luckily this morning was perfect.  But before we go there, i have to catch up and show you what else has been going on this week… It is pretty interesting that […]

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Windy Hiatus

We’re back online!  Although it’s not “much” every little bit counts. If you look closely you’ll notice that they put in all the windows on the east side (which is the side with the most windows)…

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Back from Memphis!

We just got back from a wonderful trip to Memphis for Erin’s brother’s wedding, it was a great time with all of the family. And here are some pics of what all has been going on around here, enjoy!

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A good day indeed.

Well happy St. Patrick’s Day to you too… …and setting the last two corner beams. Ej and i are truly blessed, and our constant prayer is that the Father would keep us faithfully satisfied with Him alone.

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Re: end of the world as we know it?

Here’s one from the archives… Just found an article entitled “‘Fusion Centers’ Expand Criteria to Identify Militia Members” on and thought it was pretty interesting in an alarming kind of way.  I submit to you that it won’t be long before christianity is put on the list of “unsafe” organizations to be monitored and labeled as domestic terrorist and national security […]

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This is going to be tall… 20′ sidewalls to be precise, and with a 2:12 pitch roof… And we finally have window and door openings!

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We have steel…

It was a misty, moisty morning so at this half way mark (noon) we finally have steel.  Can’t wait till it’s vertical! But before you go, enjoy this “Misty Moisty Morning” by Steeleye Span

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That just happened!

Wow what a day, it was great, and now we have a foundation to build on! After a little premature start, and dad getting a little upset, the steel is now up and ready to go. I will leave you with this little poem to accompany this last photo: The day is done It surely […]

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What just happened?!?

Yes that’s right i am posting twice in one day… Today’s earlier post was from this morning before any of the laborers arrived and now at the end of the day we basically have all of the plumbing in the slab ready to go… They (the plumbers) will come back out tomorrow morning (Wed, March […]

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Rain Rain Go Away…

It has been so stinkin’ wet here and the weather prophets say much more is on the way so the workers are kicking it into high gear and wanting to accomplish much before monday.  We are now ready to plumb this bad boy and put the steel in the trenches… I must confess, when this […]

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In the beginning…

So in case you haven’t heard (and i don’t necessarily expect that you have), we are starting to build our little homestead.  Of course this is going to get really fun the further along we get into the year with Erin (my wife) being prego (due in September). So we have a house to come […]

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Irish Casserole

I have never anticipated that i would share recipes on this blog but i am going to now. The background/introduction: This morning was my groups turn to distribute food and preach the gospel at Shepherd’s Heart, the local food pantry. It was a great morning and we go to pray with a handful of people […]

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Random Mobile Post

At the doctor this morning with my wife. We are tired (long story)… There’s a funny old man in the waiting room with us, they told him he had to drink a huge cup of stuff and he just laughed and took the cup. After fumbling around with it, he dropped the straw and asked […]

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The Stage—The Story

When you feel like just shutting it all down, closing the doors (imagining of course they’re mine to close).  People are so ungrateful, so selfish and self centered, i see it so clearly in myself and even more clearly in others.  Humanity is so lazy when it comes to all the right things and so […]

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We used to be pagan too!

Just read a great article on Christmas here and thought i would pass it right along.  If it is any incentive, i highly recommend it, especially if you or anyone you know refuses to celebrate this joyous season (or certain aspects of it) because of the supposed pagan roots… “Some object to the celebration of […]

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How would you like your eggs?

Jesus says His yoke is easy and His burden is light, i believe this wholly and i also know that in this world we experience tribulation and suffering.  Both equally and simultaneously true… The necessary response: Thank you God that your grace is sufficient even though you aren’t removing this unrelenting, persistently painful, troublesome and […]

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Thanks Given

When we talk about thanksgiving we can’t get very far before we must define our terms.  In society, the understanding and interpretations of definitions tend to evolve with culture and especially so in a post-modern society.  As believers we don’t take our cue from the outside, from the society, we base everything on Scripture, believing […]

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Quite a Stir

Yesterday i picked up a book and randomly opened the page to find a quote by St. Augustine that said, “Love God and do as you please.”  As is my custom when something strikes me, i tweeted it.  I understood that this could be perceived as shocking and low and behold it caused quite a […]

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Jesus Under the Word

This is an exhortation by Pastor Doug Wilson.  Seems quite significant for this generation.  Here is an excerpt, you can click the link to read it in it’s entirety along with comments… When our Lord was tempted by the devil in the wilderness, He answered with Scripture, as we all know. Three times He was […]

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Our Abiding Breath

Living by the Spirit. Text: Romans 7:18 – 8:11 When discussing life as a Christian, or when discipling believers, you are inevitably faced with, usually by very sincere, desperate Christians, the infamous question “How do i do that?”, “How do i just abide in Christ”, or “How do i walk in the Spirit?”. These question […]

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‘In Chapel Style’

Had some fun recently with some friends (Tori, Spencer, and Mareli) in an old school gym built in the 30’s, i had to capture the moment and all i had was my phone… Click the link and have a listen if you like… *the link

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Let Love

12.1 I appeal to you therefore brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies… It is by God’s grace and mercy that we can even approach Him.  Just think about the Holy of Holies. No one but the High Priest could go beyond the curtain.  Jesus Christ is now the High Priest for […]

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Impending Poem

This is a project i was a part of. Just so you know, we didn’t get the greatest grade but i am still very proud! “Impending defined is, about to happen. Our video is a poem of words and images. We felt very limited in our personal … all » ability to accurately give convincing […]

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The only reason we dislike the idea of being “robots” is because as humans we are always on the controlling side of things… Animals, innovation, technology, relationships, etc. including robots. Do robots hate the idea of being robots? They do in the movies, but what about real life?

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finished my own cleaning turned off the flow of water and now here i stand naked because i am alone when i look toward the mirror i see only the gray haze all that’s created is steam and  fleeting so appropriately a byproduct of my self-absorption depending on my timing and my position, could see despair […]

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Eye Spy – 2

Stumbled across this wonderfully inspiring post.  Enjoy. Behind Closed Doors “…who shut in the sea with doors, when it burst forth and issued from the womb?”Job 38:8 As with all good government, important kingdom decisions are carried out in private. This is pictured in many ways, not least in God’s design of our everyday lives. […]

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The Gospel and Forks

Q: How do you teach immature children the truth of the Gospel and a Christian life? A: The same way you taught them how to use a fork. I recently inherited my brand new baby sheep. With the start of every school year i get all the new 6th graders. It is always culture shock […]

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Thank God

This is a raw live recording of a song we wrote earlier this year, here is the mp3 and the chart… Enjoy! Thank God (chart) Thank God (mp3)

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Robert Bly’s Poetry

Heard this on the radio today and thought they were beautiful and intriguing… Follow this link to read more poems and find out about his very interesting and original style. THE SLIM FIR-SEEDS The nimble oven bird, the dignity of pears, The simplicity of oars, the imperishable Engines inside slim fir-seeds, all of these Hint […]

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Psalm 23

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.  He makes me lie down in green pastures.  He leads me beside still waters.  He restores my soul.  He leads me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.  Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, […]

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Devote Yourself

The Holy Spirit has been prodding and convicting me the last few months about my knowledge of the Word of God.  In Acts 2:42 we see that the birthing of the Church started with people devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching.  There are other things listed in the passage but i believe that their devotion […]

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Litany of Praise #1

// / One: Thank God in my weakness You are Strength All: Praise God You are Strength Thank God in my shadow You are Light Praise God You are Light Thank God in my sorrow You are Joy Praise God You are Joy Thank God in my struggle You are Peace Praise God You are […]

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Genesis 4:1-16

I recently had an incredible moment, call it a revelation call it coincidence some might even call it Biblical poetic prophecy, all i know is that it blew my mind.  It all began during our thursday morning bible study and the Scriptural passage in Genesis chapter 4 verses 1 through 16.  It reads as follows: […]

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Ode 11

This song is from the ancient Odes of Solomon.  Let it inspire you with it’s beauty like it inspired and is inspiring me. 1 My heart was cloven and its flower appeared; and grace sprang up in it: and it brought forth fruit to the Lord, 2 For the Most High clave my heart by […]

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Does Satan Exist?

Annie Lobert and Pastor Mark Driscoll face off with Deepak Chopra and Bishop Carlton Pearson in this intriguing discussion. This is definitely worth watching. Click here for the rest of the of the videos.

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end of the world as we know it?

Just found an article entitled “‘Fusion Centers’ Expand Criteria to Identify Militia Members” on and thought it was pretty interesting in an alarming kind of way.  I submit to you that it won’t be long before christianity is put on the list of “unsafe” organizations to be monitored and labeled as domestic terrorist and national security threats, and the Bible […]

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U2, No Line On The Horizon

After anticipating therelease for over a year now, the new U2 album, No Line On The Horizon, is finally here.  This is definitely an album worth owning.  It is one of those where you don’t even care what song comes on because they are all so enjoyable to listen to.  As i listened to one of the songs, […]

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Ok so i was so excited about the forum that i forgot to tell you where to find it! Sorry! Go to to join the conversation!

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cfc community forum

You all will have to go check out CFC’s brand-spankin new community forum!  As you can probably tell by the ridiculous adjectives i am using, i am incredibly excited about this!  I hope this will be a tool for you to get to know one another, encourage one another, challenge one another, ask questions, make […]

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Just heard an awesome quote… “You can’t stay young forever, but you can stay immature for the rest of your life!” Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

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Impending Poem

Impending defined is, about to happen. Our video is a poem of words and images. We felt very limited in our personal ability to accurately give convincing evidence to anyone, even slightly critical, that we could actually and permanently change the world. We opted to look back on history and observe how others have changed […]

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Since you all are going to be commenting so frequently, you guys all need to go over to and sign up to get a globally recognized avatar (which is just the little image that appears by your name when you comment or post from blog to blog).  So go on don’t hesitate, get a […]

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Christ Fellowship Church

Everyone be sure to check out our new church website  One of the many cool things about it is that you can listen to and download the messages and the message guides.  That is especially awesome to think about when we understand what the Bible says in Gal. 2:20, “…the life i now live […]

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mirror mirror on the wall…

i love change!  Whether you think it right or wrong, i generally equate it to progression and growth.  The biggest problem i run into is my lack of patience, getting agitated because i, i, i.  i am stuck in my predictable box and i am viewing life out of my little cardboard peephole.  Imagine the […]

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did you know?

This stuff totally blows my mind… i have watched it at least 7 times now and it still amazes me everytime!  Take a look for yourself… i told you it was crazy awesome!

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dualing concepts

My life for Christ  vs.  Not I, but Christ Gal. 2:20 says, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave […]

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new year; new ways?

So it is almost next year as i sit here at a quarter till 7 on December 31, 2008 and i have just been thinking: what is the big deal with these new years? I mean honestly we have to buy new calenders and sign some things a little differently, and i am sure there […]

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my morning epiphany…

So just to be clear, these morning epiphanies aren’t necessarily a usual occurrence for me although i surely wouldn’t complain if they were… It’s going to sound cliche and incredibly cheesy but i am going to share it just how it happened. I was in between asleep and fully coherent and i don’t even remember […]

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“50/50 vs. 100″

I just stumbled onto this blog post by Jonathan Dodson that I thought was so awesome. It is called “50/50 or 100 percent gospel?” check it out here. It so elequently diagnosis the fundemental problem of the institution that is the western church.

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this site…

So this is and just to be clear, I never actually intended on starting a blog site but I thought since I already owned this domain I might as well use it for something! So here goes…

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