Tag: fear

David’s Bad Day Prayer – Psalm 86

David’s Bad Day Prayer – Psalm 86

Encouragment
This article is much longer than our normal Lambchow Article. It is an edited transcript of the sermon Dale presented at Vineyard Church Peoria on June 11th, 2017. Thank you VCP and Pastor Ben Hoerr for the opportunity. The audio can be listened to on their iTunes podcast or from their website - http://www.thevineyardchurchpeoria.org/2017/06/11/davids-bad-day-prayer/ We’ve all had bad days. One of my bad days happened early in my career as a computer networking consultant. The office machine company I worked for had recently launched a division aimed at this new opportunity of making PC’s talk to one another. There were two of us dedicated to growing that business in Peoria. One of our early calls was to a local Police Department. They had a particular kind of server, and we want
Walking Through 1st Peter: If…Then…So…Because

Walking Through 1st Peter: If…Then…So…Because

Encouragment
We are all familiar with the “if…then” formula. In many ways, our world is made up of “if…then” points. If I eat then, my hunger is satisfied. If I go to work and do a good job, then I will get paid. And if I get paid then I can have a roof over my head. The little bits of code that make your computer or smartphone work are built on programmed “if…then” statements.  In our next step of Walking Through 1st Peter we encounter a powerful “if…then.” Welcome to our sixth installment of Walking Through 1st Peter. If you are just joining us or have missed the previous articles they can be found at Lambchow.com. In our last entry, Peter declared that we, as followers of Jesus, are to be (or become) holy. Immediately after that instruction Peter continues, “If you address as Father the One who i
Whom Do You Fear?

Whom Do You Fear?

Encouragment
Fear is a powerful motivator that we don’t always recognize. How many of our choices are fueled by what we fear? We fear rejection so we do whatever is necessary to try and fit in. We fear to be vulnerable and unsafe, so we curry favor with the strong or bargain with our foe. We fear to be insignificant, ignored, and unvalued so we puff ourselves up to be noticed. We fear being hurt so we create buffers and space in hopes that they can’t reach us. What we say, what we do, the clothes we wear, even the foods we choose can be motivated by fear. Sometimes we recognize our fears but usually they are hiding in the shadows of our thoughts. The book of Proverb is filled with phrases that teach a lesson or provide a warning. One such proverb reads, “Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trust
A Two-Sided Coin

A Two-Sided Coin

Encouragment
Some truths are so simple that we miss how profound they really are. One plus one is two. A simple truth that is foundational to all mathematics. The sun rises from the east and sets in the west like clockwork. How much of our day, even our lives, relies on that simple fact. We count days by it. We can know what direction we’re facing from it.  We can even figure out our latitude, how far north or south we are, even when there are no other landmarks to be seen. There is also a spiritual truth that is likewise so simple that we miss how utterly profound it is. What I have in mind is like a two-sided coin. On the surface they seem unconnected like heads and tails but taken together they change lives and even worlds. The first side of this truth is something we don’t want to hear. Ent
Seven: Dear Smyrna

Seven: Dear Smyrna

Encouragment
Say that you’re flying along at 36,000 feet and experience a bit of turbulence, a few pot holes in the sky. And let’s say that the captain can see an unavoidable thunderstorm ahead. Would you rather that he come on the intercom and say, “Sorry about that folks, nothing to worry about.” Or would you rather hear, “Ladies and gentlemen we have some weather ahead, please return to your seats and buckle in. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.” While we may not want to hear it we would rather know what is ahead. In the same way, Jesus didn’t mince words with the church at Smyrna and what was coming their way. Jesus’ second letter to the churches of Asia is addressed to Smyrna. Jesus wrote, “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: The first and the last, who was dead, and has come to li
The Cure

The Cure

Encouragment, Worship
A common character in the old west is the snake oil salesman. Those purveyors of medicinal elixirs guaranteed to cure whatever ailed you. “Step right up ladies and gentlemen and let me tell you about Dr. Throttlebottom’s Patented formula. Just one spoonful in the morning and another at bedtime is sure to cure rheumatism, cancer, diabetes, baldness, bad breath, and curvature of the spine.” Of course the “elixir” was mostly alcohol and the only thing that it cured was the drought in Dr. Throttlebottom’s wallet. The amazing thing is that according to a study in Scientific American the original snake oil was brought over from China and did have medicinal value. Derived from Chinese water snakes it contained high levels of Omega-3s. “These acids not only reduce inflammation, such as arthriti
Faith in Action

Faith in Action

Encouragment, Faith
One day Jesus’ disciples were practicing what Jesus had been teaching them.  The incident involved a young boy who was demonically self-destructive and a worried father. The disciples said the words to expel the demon, just like they’d seen Jesus do, but nothing worked. The worried father ran to find Jesus and implored Him to come and heal his son. Jesus responds with some harsh words concerning unbelief and twisted faith. “And Jesus answered and said, “You unbelieving and perverted generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I put up with you?” (Matthew 17:17, NASB95)  Jesus then calls the boy Himself, He rebukes the demon and heals the son. At sometime after the event, the disciples ask Jesus about their failure,  “Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why co
The Race: Get Set!

The Race: Get Set!

Series, The Race
This article is the second part of a sermon series based on 1 Peter 1:13-25.  The metaphor for these articles are the starter’s command of “on your marks”, “get set”, and “go”. The first article can be found here. The Race: Get Set! Once again the runners are at the line. At the call of “on your marks,” they have set their feet, placed their hands, and taken a moment of calm before the call to “get set”.  In the race of following Christ, we equated this moment to 1 Peter 1:13-16 where Peter instructs his readers to “prepare their minds for action”, “keep a sober spirit”, “fix their hope on grace through the revelation of Christ”, and “be holy”.  Now comes the call to “get set!”  The runners snap to their launch position. They raise from their almost prayer-like stance to one of readiness
Sally and the Unexpected Visitor

Sally and the Unexpected Visitor

Short Stories
“Class,” Mrs. Braxton began, “Its coloring time. Since it is sooo hot out I thought we should color something cooler. Brandon, would you help me pass out these pages?” A red-headed boy jumps up and enthusiastically “walks” to the front of the class. Sally is excited to get a penguin to color, some kids got polar bears, sea lions, or orcas but she liked penguins most of all. While the children work on their pictures Mrs. Braxton wanders around the room that has been darkened to help keep it a bit cooler.  A fan oscillates in the corner providing a little breeze.  Earlier that morning she had opened the fire door to let in the cooler morning.  “A purple polar bear, that’s quite imaginative Alex.”   “Mrs. Braxton, I’m hot,” a dark haired girl complained. “I know dear, we’ll have a co
Spirit of Knowledge and Fear of the Lord

Spirit of Knowledge and Fear of the Lord

Series, Spirit of the Lord
This is the final article based on Isaiah 11:1-2 where he identifies attributes of the Spirit of the Lord.  The last couplet or pairing is the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. Recently my daughter’s family decided to have hobo dinners.  For those that may not know what that that is - Hobo dinners are foil pack meals that usually contain hamburger, potatoes, and carrots.  The foil pack is laid on the coals of a campfire to cook.  In this case their campfire is built in a fire pit made of a shallow steel bowl resting on four legs. Rebekah, our daughter, dutifully warned two and a half year old Eli, to stay away from the fire pit because it was hot and he would be hurt if he touched it. Now, Eli took his mother’s warning to heart. A little while later Rebekah approached the fi
Unite My Heart

Unite My Heart

Encouragment, Prayer
This article is longer than usual. It is the text of the sermon I presented at New Life Community Church in Henry Illinois on June 29th, 2014.  One day at a nearby campground Chet was settling in to listen to the Cub-Cardinal game on the radio.  Now Chet was not just a Cub fan, he was THE Cub fan.  He had a Cub Cozy for his cola.  A Cub Jersey was his shirt of choice when he could get away with it.  He even displayed his Cubness on the roof of his camper with a carefully painted logo - just in case someone would fly over. Not only did Chet listen to every game he kept a scorebook and recorded every ball and strike, run and out. Somewhere along the third inning Art walked by. After exchanging campground pleasantries Art asked how the game was going. “Cubs are up 2 to 1 in the third