Archive for December, 2012

Thoughts from a Friend

Posted: December 30, 2012 in Just A Thought

I received this email from a friend not long ago. I thought it was worth passing along as something to think about.

My daddy taught me that men do not cry. Even after getting the belt, if we cried we got more, my brother and I.  I remember him saying that a man only cries if his heart hurts, not his body. I learned what he was training me for, as we experienced the passing of loved ones, my papaw, my grandma (his mother). I never saw him cry, which is hard to pull off when your mother dies. He could not, because his family needed him, through those funerals, there was always someone who needed his shoulder, and someone who needed mine, and I could do that because he taught me.

Friday morning I saw the news, I shut my office door and fell to my knees and cried. Saturday, I held my 3-year-old daughter as she took her afternoon nap and her head was wet with my tears. I have been worried that I had to play Christmas songs for church which is so hard when your heart is so heavy. What can men do against such reckless evil, such suffering and sorrow.

I am only beginning to understand this theology, but I believe I know what to do. It may be best related to an old story I heard a long time ago. A man and his wife, lived up on the side of the mountain, cobbled a living as best they could. When they were older they finally had a child, a little girl. She was turning 7 when he was turning 60, and then she died. The man was the quiet type, most that came to the funeral had never even heard him speak. One man in particular, came with his family, his two little girls and his wife. They lived in town and his thoughts were with his business, his house, his life. He felt bad for the couple but he had things to worry about too. At the funeral, the preacher had spoken, the choir had sung, as the old man stands up, with his wife’s head still on his shoulder weeping. He sang praise to God almighty, Glory to all his works, praise to God. The young man was a bit stunned, he took notice, he looked around, he saw so as old graveyard, with many little graves, everyone with a lamb on top. He said he began to understand what was lost from this older generation, that strength, that courage that even when the world was at its worst, to raise your face to the Lord and praise Him.

Its does not make sense to the machinery of this world, it comes from knowledge of a greater world. In sorrow we come face to face with the distance between us and God, the necessary distance of mortality, of that bitter-sweet breath of life. As hard as it is, as unreasonable as it seems, we have to muster what strength we can and Praise God so much more in hard times, in the worst of times. It terrifies me what that may come to mean in my life, and I know that I do not have the strength to handle what is to come, but for right now, I know what it is that I need to be doing. What I need to be doing is praising God, the act of worship is my answer.

Living It Out

Posted: December 11, 2012 in Coming Up, Standing Strong

Having a healthy head is important, to know the truth from God’s Word. But, we need to have healthy hearts as well. Unfortunately, and too often men do the work to gain the head knowledge but don’t do the heart work of putting the knowledge into practice. Guys go to church to hear a great sermon and can recall all the details of the sermon. They attend small group and do great at answering questions about the sermon and the commentary of the scriptures. They may even attend a class to ‘dig deeper’ and still struggle to put the words and lessons into practice in their lives. Jesus talked about putting the words into practice in our lives.

 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock” Matt 7:24

 Catch that?  He said hears the words and puts them into practice is like a wise man, not just hears the words.

 Later in the Book of James we see the very same thing in James 1:19-25. Go read it for yourself. In verse 22 he writes Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. There’s a do there and that do is often what keeps men from really impacting those around them for the kingdom. Nobody is saying that it’s easy to put the words into practice. You have to take some risks to put the words into practice. But in doing the hard part you may be risking what people might think or in doing what is right, you may have to show what lies under the exterior. You may actually have to show what’s in your heart and not just what’s in your head.

We are all tempted to keep it all inside and not reveal our hearts, it’s safer that way. At least that’s what we think. If you struggle with not doing what you are hearing and reading in God’s Word then check out Core Health For Men, it starts in January. In the Temptation small group  you will find some tools necessary for men to stand strong against the temptation of not doing and practicing what God’s Word tells us to do.

Married or Going To Be…

Posted: December 5, 2012 in Coming Up, Marriage

If you have been married for four days, four years, forty years or are thinking about getting married here is an article for you. If you have been married multiple times and can’t face up to the fact that you are the common denominator then check this article out.

If you are married, want to be married, want to be married again or just desire to be a better husband then consider coming to Core Health at Bethel Richland in January. The Intimacy Group is about helping guys understand a woman’s heart.




Core Health For Men

Posted: December 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

Core Health is designed to encourage and equip men to build and maintain healthy relationships in their lives.

Our spiritual pathway for men is: Get In – Get Healthy – Get Strong – Get Going. Getting spiritually healthy, takes hard work, time, dedication and humility. Having good friends, a great marriage, and a solid family all depend on healthy relationships with your spouse, your children, other men, and most importantly Jesus Christ.  Spiritually healthy men recognize their dependence on God in every area of their life.

The Core Health group Bible studies will equip men to be obedient to Christ by studying and applying scripture, meaningful prayer, and forming healthy relationships.  The Core Health messages and discussion help us look at our lives and relationships through scripture, study, and discussion. Come join other men, like you, who are on the journey to becoming stronger Christians, better husbands, better dads, better friends, and better disciples.

Coming in January to Bethel Church.  Questions? email