I believe that . . .

I gave my church an assignment last Sunday based on this story.

Philip Yancey

Philip Yancey

Popular author Philip Yancey’s father-in-law was stripped of his health in his later years. A nerve disease robbed him of almost all of his motor skills. He could not be up and around. His 39-year-old daughter also battled a severe form of diabetes. Because of these health and family matters, financial pressures mounted. In the midst of all of this, He took a piece of paper and he said, “This I believe.” He wrote down three things:

Number 1 – life is difficult. Number 2 – God is merciful. Number 3 – heaven is certain.

What would you write down? That was the assignment. Here is what I wrote:

I believe…

That God is the only one true God.

That Jesus is the only way to salvation.

That the Holy Spirit completes the Trinity.

That the Bible is God’s Word.

That sin separates us from God.

That salvation is by grace alone through faith alone.

That believers in Jesus should be baptized as a point of identifying their belief in Jesus.

That the church is God’s idea and therefore a good idea and necessary in the life of every believer.

That Christ is returning and when He does all things will be brought unto completion forever.

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How to Pray the Next Couple of Weeks for the Louisiana Baptist Convention

On Tuesdays, I try to use this blog to write about something of interest to my larger reading audience of Louisiana Baptists. It continues to be a pleasure to serve as president of the Convention. Someone asked me last week, “What have you learned as president?” The question is interesting, but I had an immediate answer.

I said, “There are a lot of great people in Louisiana Baptist churches.” My life is richer for making many new friends. There are a lot of unsung heroes in churches across our state that care deeply about the lost and our cooperative effort to reach our neighbors.

I want to ask you to pray very specifically for all of our Boards over the next week. Over the next 5 weeks all of our boards will meet—LC, Louisiana Baptist Foundation, Executive Board, Baptist Message, and the Children’s Home.

This week it is the board of Louisiana College. I look forward to being with Dr. Rick Brewer in his first series of board meetings since being hired as president of LC.

In the next days, I will also be announcing a major challenge to all Louisiana Baptists regarding continuing to meet the challenges we adopted in our Vision 2020 Strategy.

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Defined by Personal Crisis

Often times, personal crisis will be a defining moment. The question is “How will the crisis define us?” Will the crisis define us by increased or decreased faith? Early in their journey with Jesus, the disciples faced a crisis while crossing a lake on a boat. You can read their story in Mark 4:35-41. Their reactions give evidence to how this crisis became for them a defining moment.

We see the disciples’ reaction in the phrase, “Don’t you care that we’re going to die?” Everything about that question was wrong. Jesus did care, and they were not going to die.
The disciples did what we do. We overreact. We overreact with emotions—“We are going to die.” We overreact because of our circumstances—“A fierce windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking over the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped.” And worst of all, we overreact even with accusations against God—“Don’t you care?”

Philip Yancey is an author. He has written a lot about his own faith journey. He once told about his father-in-law, who was a Bible teacher through his life and found troubling times in his last days. A nerve disease robbed him of almost all of his motor skills. He could not be up and around. His 39-year-old daughter battled a severe form of diabetes. Because of these health and family matters, financial pressures mounted. In the midst of all of this, He took a piece of paper and he said, “This I believe.” He wrote down three things:

Number 1 – life is difficult. Number 2 – God is merciful. Number 3 – heaven is certain.

(If you would like to receive an email notification each time I post, use the ““Subscribe to this site” link at the top of the right column.”)