Dave Peterson's Posts (3)

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Hey everyone, just wondering if anyone else on here struggles with entertainment choices.  I love good old classic rock music, and blues...and movies.  I generally find myslef listening to christian music, but feel pulled back over & over again to the secular music. 

I just was wondering if anyone struggle with this.  I know that most of this music has subject matter that is not good.  Also, when it comes to movies, I am offended by the use of the "f" word and the using of the Lord's name in vain, and yet sometimes still watch movies containing these things.

I wonder is this is a result of living in an entertainment saturated culture.  I'm sure that the church in persecuted countries don't have this issue.

What are some of your thoughts?

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While reading 2 Chronicles, chapters 6-15 today, one particular verse jumped out at me. It was 2 Chronicles 7:1 "When Solomon finished praying, fire descended from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the LORD filled the temple."

I read that and paused for just a moment picturing what happened in my mind. I remember thinking..."WOW!" I mean, wouldn't you have wanted to see that! Here you are praying...and then suddenly the fire descends from heaven...consumes your offering...and the glory of the Lord fills the place you are at!!!! I'm serious people, I'm thinking "WHOOOAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!"

And then it hit me...this should be you and me...this should be our church services...our private prayer times...our private worship time...our corporate prayer time...this should be anytime we worship!

I say that because we have the glory of the Lord filling our temple (our body), the fire from heaven (the Holy Spirit) indwells us and should consume us!

But most of the time it doesn't happen. At the very least, if it is happening, somehow, someway, we have turned a blinde eye towards it...or we have become deaf, dumb and blind when it comes to the supernatural presence of the one, true, almighty, all powerful God of the universe!

I don't have all the answers here, but I have begun a journey this week, a journey of losing myself in the Lord, a journey of immersing myself in the Word, a journey of worship, a journey of prayer, a journey of living out the gospel, of not just knowing the gospel, or knowing the Lord, or knowing the Word, but one of walking the gospel, walking with the Lord, walking in the ways of the Word.

I desire, more than any other time in my life to be consumed by the fire of the Lord, to be filled with His presence, to see the glory of the Lord made manifest in my life and in the lives of those around me. I desire to come to worship with my brothers and sisters, rejoicing, expecting, anticipating the glory of the Lord to come fill this place!

If the church, both the individuals and the local gathering, would be consumed by the fire of the Lord, if the offering of our lives was consumed by holy fire from heaven, then those around us would come rushing to find out what is happening!

There is a quote attributed to John Wesley that goes something like this: "Set yourself on fire with passion & people will come for miles to watch you burn.” I have done some research and have found that some say Wesley never said this. Whether he did or not, I do not know, but what I do know is that this quote is very true. But I would like to state it this way instead, "Be set on fire by the Holy Spirit and people will be drawn to the Lord."

Glory come down, and heaven, fill my soul.
Pastor Dave 

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Over the last year or so I have been reading some books that have had a huge impact on my walk with Christ. They have caused me to rethink my commitment to Jesus, what it means to be a Christian, how to live out the Christian faith…what a life totally surrendered to Jesus might look like, and a host of other questions.

Some of these books have been: “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan; “Radical” by David Platt; “Not A Fan” by Kyle Idleman. Most recently I have just finished the novel, “Courageous” by Randy Alcorn.

This is based on the screenplay of the upcoming movie by the same name. As a pastor, I have been able to see an advance screening of the movie, and as great as the movie is, the book is even better, and has had an even bigger impact on my life than the movie.

All of these books, and the movie, have one theme in common…how can you stay the same after you have encountered Jesus. They may not seem as if they are addressing this issue, but at the core, that is exactly what they are saying.

How can you stay the same after you have encountered the “crazy love” of Jesus? How can you stay the same if you have come into a relationship with this “radical” Jesus? How could you ever be just a “fan” and not a totally committed follower of Jesus after you realize what He has done for you? And how could you not be changed into a “courageous” follower after you have been loved to the cross by this man, who is God in the flesh, Jesus?

Reading John chapter 8 today, these thoughts and more came to my mind, especially when I got down to verse 11.

In John chapter 8 a woman was caught in adultery and brought to Jesus. Now, the first thing that comes to my mind is where was the man? As my Dad used to tell me, “It takes two to tango.” Maybe the man was a Pharisee or a scribe and so they were protecting one of their own. Maybe this woman was a prostitute, so they were trying to get rid of an unwanted person in their society. Whatever the reason, they were one sided in their presentation of their religious beliefs.

Jesus would have none of that.

After he wrote something in the dirt…(ever wonder what He was writing? Maybe it was the name of the scribe or Pharisee that was with the woman)…He answered them with this in verse 7: “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.”

Well, that ended that. One by one they left. Until only the woman and Jesus remained. It was after this that He said these words to her in verse 11: “Neither do I condemn you. Go and sin no more.”

If I had a nickel for every person who quoted the first part of that statement from Jesus to me, well, I’d be a rich man for sure. Everyone wants the "no condemnation" Jesus, but not to many are ready to embrace the same Jesus that says, "Go, and sin no more."

But it is the second part of the statement that is essential and vital to this dialogue.

“Go and sin no more.”

In essence He was saying, “Go, and leave your old life behind. Go, and walk in a different direction than what you were heading. Go, and follow Me.”

And how could she not do so? After being forgiven by Jesus, how could her life not be changed? How could she continue in the life she once had? After this day, after this encounter, after being saved by Jesus, how could she not now live for Him?

And yet, many professing believers in Jesus seem to do just that.

Far too often, I have found myself doing just that.

No more.

Please don’t misunderstand me. I am not saying that I can be sinless…but I am saying that I can sin less. I am saying that I can follower Jesus closer. I am saying that I can love Him more.

And after all, isn’t that what it is all about.

Having this crazy love, this radical love, this courageous love, this love that causes me to be a follower and not a fan, of the one who gave His life for me…Jesus.

Will you join me?

Let’s go.

Pastor Dave

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