2nd look

Has Science Buried God? Part 1

Has Science buried God? Have we found enough evidence through the rigorous study of science – to sufficiently dismiss a need to look to a God for answers on why we are here – why the universe exists; what truly gives us meaning and purpose and so forth? There are some voices out there that would claim we have; that science has given us all we need to sufficiently and confidently leave our archaic faith in God behind. But has science really done this?

A few weeks back I had a very lengthy and pleasant conversation with a man who identifies himself as an atheist. He told me that he was not a religious person at all – but that he felt he was a man who placed his trust in science. The assumption he made in this statement was that the two are polar opposites. You either are a religious man – or a man of science – however, I find that this distinction between the two is not necessary. In other words – you don’t need to be one or the other as a matter of fact – I think there is no good reason why you cannot and should not be both.
This past weekend we discussed some scientific findings in the universe that seem to imply not only a cause behind the universe’s existence – but a designer. Now, to be fair – each of the “fine tuning” points I made in the sermon are debated although I still find these fine tuning arguments more compelling than the arguments against them and I’m not alone; many in the scientific community do. In fact a new theory has emerged called the “multiverse” and it is somewhat of an answer or response to how our universe could appear to be so specifically fine tuned. The theory states that maybe it’s because there are millions of universes out there – some universes exist without capability of supporting life and some universes do exist with this capability. So we just happen to live in one of those universes. It’s like saying: Yea we know the universe is fine tuned but it’s no big deal because there are millions of possible universes out there – this one just happens to work and so we live in this universe… The problem with this statement is that there seems to be no real hard evidence – no real evidence at all for the existence of a multiverse – nor an explanation for why there is such a multiverse and where it came from. In other words – it takes faith to believe in a multiverse – big time faith – I would propose even more blind faith than some have accused me of having for believing in a God who created everything and yet there are some scientists out there who believe in the multiverse. One scientist named Martin Rees concedes that he sees fine tuning in the universe – but he attributes it to the existence of a multiverse – here’s what he says: “If on does not believe in providential design, but still thinks the fine tuning needs some explanation, there is another explanation – a highly speculative one, so I should reiterate my health warning at this stage. It is the one I much prefer, however even in our present state of knowledge any such preference can be no more than a hunch…” What’s he saying? Basically he’s saying: “I know it’s no more than a hunch, this multiverse – but I prefer it anyway…” At the very least this is not scientific fact – it’s a highly speculative hunch that explains why we might see fine tuning without referring to a designer; but nevertheless; only a hunch it seems. Is it not fair at least to say someone needs to exercise some bit of “faith” to explain away a possible designer behind a universe with what appears to be… Design? And I must also add- there are new arguments arising that suggest that should we discover a multiverse – it wouldn’t necessarily disprove the existence of God even then.

Here’s my point:

We are asking the question – has science buried God. From what we have seen science has not seemed to bury God but on the contrary some could argue that science points us to God. This is very exciting when we consider this because we may find such a highly respected field of study like science – showing us divine fingerprints throughout the universe. For me – it fills my mind and heart with awe. And I am reminded of David’s words in Psalm 8: “What is man that you are mindful of him?”

Did you know that He is mindful of you?  He is not only mindful of you – He has considered you a friend – an heir to his throne – an adopted child – His beloved. You don’t believe me?  Go on google search and type in: “I am God’s friend” or “I am an heir to God’s throne” or “I am God’s beloved.” You’ll likely find a Scripture reference that talks about this. The God who made all of this – the God whose fingerprints we can see on this universe – who finely tuned it all – is not only aware of you – but loves you. My hope and prayer for you this week – is that you will be reminded of not only God’s amazing power – but His wonderful love.

I’d like to give you an assignment. It’s called a beauty project. For some time every day this week – take some time to enjoy nature. Maybe it means you get outside – or maybe you watch a movie; tv show – or look at beautiful pictures online. Take sometime to just marvel at the creation of God and let that bring you back to the reminder – you are loved by the same God who made all of this! You are loved by the same God who imagined colors – or wove the stars into space – the same God who conceived of Yosemite; the same God who can dip a finger in the ocean and stir a tidal wave; this same God – loves you. Be at peace this week for you are known and loved my friend.

Pastor Ryan



Doubts?

Hello SNC friends-

You may remember on Sunday I spoke about some reasons to think Christianity is sound as a place we can put our trust in. You may notice that over the next ten weeks we will address each of these 7 areas I spoke about. Next week we will address the question: “Has Science Buried God?” I truly hope you can join us on Sunday morning.

Recently I’ve been reading a book titled: “Tough questions; Real Answers” by William Lane Craig. In the book he has a chapter on the issue of doubt in the life of a Christian. Is it ok to doubt the existence of God? Is doubt something we can eradicate completely from our lives? How do we deal with doubt? In my journey as a Christian I have wrestled with moments and seasons of doubt; and it has become clear to me that there may be places where we don’t have all our questions resolved – but can this lead us to doubt? Dr. Craig talks about the destructive nature of doubt and how we can combat it in our lives. He gives four ways to wage war against our doubts:

1) Recognize that doubt is never just a purely intellectual problem.
This was a powerful reminder to me. If God is truly there and everything we read in the Scriptures is true – then not only do we have a Savior – but we have an enemy, and if so – then we have someone devoted to the destruction of our faiths. Doubt may be a result of spiritual attack. If you are struggling with doubt – perhaps prayer is the first place to begin. To ask God to allow you to hear His voice and to silence the voice of the enemy.

In addition to this – our doubting may have more reasons than just intellectual problems. Many times I have found that doubts often arise in connection with other emotional reasons: grief; anger; bitterness; pain; health struggles; pride; even sin. I’m not saying this is purely the cause for our struggles and certainly we can doubt God’s existence for intellectual reasons – but I have often found those aren’t the only reasons. George Wald; winner of the nobel prize in physiology and medicine wrote this:

There are only two possible explanations as to how life arose: Spontaneous generation arising to evolution or a supernatural creative act of God . . .There is no other possibility. Spontaneous generation was scientifically disproved 120 years ago by Louis Pasteur and others, but that just leaves us with only one other possibility . . . that life came as a supernatural act of creation by God, but I can’t accept that philosophy because I do not want to believe in God. Therefore I choose to believe in that which I know is scientifically impossible, spontaneous generation leading to evolution.”

I don’t think it’s unfair to say that Dr. Wald is making his decision to believe in the non-existence of a God for more reasons than just intellectual. Hey at least he’s honest. He just doesn’t want to believe in God. This shouldn’t be a surprise to us – the Scriptures are clear that we are unable to desire the Gospel with God’s Spirit moving in our hearts – opening our eyes, minds and souls to Him. In the heart of our doubts – I think it is accurate to say – intellectual difficulties aren’t the only reason. It may be helpful when you are dealing with doubt to recognize it’s not necessarily just about reading books or listening to seminars. There may be other things we need to look at.

2) When doubts arise – keep in mind the proper relationship between faith and reason

When we ask the question: Is my faith true? The truth is – our intellect doesn’t give us the answer to this. Dr. Craig’s point is that The Holy Spirit in our lives authenticates our faith. This is not to put our powers of reason down but to actually give them their rightful place in our lives. The counsel and voice of God need to be first in our lives and our reason needs to be second.

I was meeting with a friend of mine who is an atheist. We were talking with him and his wife about their marriage. At one point in the conversation he admitted that sometimes he relies too heavily on his powers of reason when trying to work on things with his wife. I responded: “I agree – but let me ask you this – don’t you think that perhaps you might be doing the same thing with God?” Wouldn’t it be possible that while you are willing to admit you may have gotten things wrong about your wife – a human being you see every day with your own two eyes; and while she is mysterious she is nothing compared to God. Wouldn’t it be somewhat reasonable to doubt your doubts about God?” Faith is active trust and sometimes we can trust even when we don’t have all the information or things don’t always make sense.

3) Remember the frailty of our limited intellects and knowledge.

I alluded to this on Sunday. Claiming absolute knowledge of something is highly difficult to defend, and yet there are many questions brought to Christianity that do just that. To make an absolute claim that there is no God – while you do not have absolute knowledge of the universe or even what is outside this universe – is simply not defensible. Our intellects have limits and is it possible there are things we do not understand simply because we just can’t? For those of us wrestling with doubts – it can be very comforting to note that even though somethings don’t make sense to us – to a higher intellect who has the advantage of foresight; hindsight; and any other sight; it might make sense to Him. Sometimes to battle doubt it’s helpful to remember we don’t have everything figured out.

4) Lastly, We need to wrestle this doubt to the ground

If you have a doubt – instead of just accepting it – perhaps it is an invitation to wrestle with this thing. Do some research. Explore what it is you are doubting, in particular the Christian response to this. See what others have written and said about this issue. Maybe it can help you resolve some of your questions. This has been hugely important for my journey with God. I have had many conversations; read books even sat down and listened to lectures on the areas of struggle that I’ve had. My friend Greg is another great example of this.

Greg has struggled with Hell. He has struggled with it emotionally; philosophically and Biblically. He has deeply wrestled with this issue and has done lots of research; debating; writing and thinking on the issue. He has done so much that he is now at a point where I think he can debate and hang in there with some of the most brilliant minds regarding this issue, and his doubts that have arisen with Hell – have been put to rest.

Sometimes we are too quick to accept that our doubt is unresolvable – or that it is just always going to be a dark spot on our Christian horizon. Wrestle that thing! Don’t let go! I knew a guy who was struggling with his faith. We gave him a ton of books to read. Hey he asked us for it! We met with him to discuss the books. Years later – when he had made his decision to abandon his faith he was giving his Christian books away because he wouldn’t be needing them anymore. So he offered me some of these great Christian books on philosophy and apologetics. I gratefully took them. As I was reading them I noticed they were brand new – looked like they’d never been cracked, and in knowing my friend; I know that he marks up everything he reads. He abuses books – littering them with his thoughts and reactions. Yet in these books? Nothing. Not a mark. It was so dismaying to me. It doesn’t look like he ever gave these books the time of day. This saddened me. He was so willing to read any atheist author out there but yet it seemed he wasn’t willing to balance it with a Christian response. If he didn’t; then he never really wrestled his doubts; he just accepted them. We don’t have to go down that road.

Doubt can be a very difficult and painful experience in the life of a believer – but it can be combatted and we can find victory there. Let me add this – please don’t go through doubt alone. If you have areas of doubt – seek out people you respect and see if they can help you – at least to discuss and verbally process; but also to maybe point you in the direction of answers. This is the beauty of being part of the family of God because we can support each other – but often we go through experiences like this alone; in isolation; because we do not want to admit that we are struggling.

My hope is that this series will help to give you some more foundation to the hope you have and maybe even serve to help combat doubt when it arises. Have a great week everybody and get ready – this Sunday we look at something called the “Kalam Cosmologial Argument.” It’s going to be awesome!!!

Have a great week my friends and may God fill you; and use you to build His kingdom,

Pastor Ryan



2nd Look

Hello Everyone!

And we’re off!

The series of tough questions has begun. What I’d like to do with this week’s 2nd look is to give you some resources for the journey ahead. Are you a book reader, see the post below for some books below that you might find very helpful and stimulating in this process. Are you a person who reads articles? I have some great website resources for you. My hope is that with these things you will find nuanced arguments that are sophisticated and not hokey. It has been a huge relief to me through the years to find that Christianity has a defense and brilliant men and women are standing in the gap – debating at the highest levels of philosophy and science. Take some time this week to check out some of these resources. I think you might be pretty surprised to see all that is out there. Have a great week everybody!

Pastor Ryan



Pastor Ryan’s favorite books & articles on Defending the Faith

Lee Strobel: The Case For A Creator
Lee Strobel: The Case For Faith
Lee Strobel: The Case For Christ
Lee Strobel: The Case For The Real Jesus
Paul Copan: Is God a Moral Monster
Paul Copan: How Do You Know You’re Not Wrong
Paul Copan: When God Goes To Starbucks
John Lennox: Gunning For God- Why The New Atheists Are Missing The Mark
John Lennox: God And Stephen Hawking
John Lennox: God’s Undertaker- Has Science Buried God
Gary Habermas: The Case For The Resurrection Of Christ
Gregory Boyd: letter From A Skeptic
C. Stephen Layman: Letters To Doubting Thomas
William Lane Craig: Hard Questions Real Answers
Dr. Steve Kumar: Christianity For Skeptics
Tim Keller: The Reason For God
 
 
 
There are many, many more- I truly hope this can be helpful to you in the days ahead as we take a deeper look at the defense of Christianity!


Anchor – Song for Tough Questions Solid Answers Series

Anchor by Hillsong is the song that Pastor Ryan is using as the anthem for our Tough Questions Solid Answers series. Click here to listen to it.



Merry Christmas!

Hello everyone!!!

For this week’s 2nd look I want to share a song that has been haunting me this Christmas season. Below are the lyrics and the link for the song.
My truest hope for all of you is that this Christmas would not merely be a time of festivities – but also a time of reflection.  May God bless you and have a merry, MERRY Christmas!!!
What Kind of Child
By Evan wickham
In the stillness of this night
all my fears have got me frozen
In this darkness shine your light
I’m not seeing, where i’m going
Then your love broke through like an angel fire
And you burned this heart alive
And I heard your truth, I saw the sign
My hope is born tonight
What kind of child is this, what kind of child is this
even the angels praise him
What kind of child is this; what kind of child is this
In the desert I will rise
As you call me to follow the star
I’ll be looking to the skies
with your promise deep in my heart

 

What kind of child is this, what kind of child is this
even the Stars shine for him
What kind of child is this; what kind of child is this

 

Emmanuel, emmanuel
the night is done, the light is come
Emmanuel
Now he is the prince of peace
He is conquering the darkness with His light
And He is the risen King
He is leading me from death and into the life
What kind of power is this, what kind of power is this
That even owns the grave
what kind of power is this, what kind of power is this
Emmanuel, emmanuel
Hallelujah
emmanuel, emmanuel
The light is come, the night is done
Emmanuel
you’ll need to scroll down the page to find the song…  merry christmas everyone!!!
Pastor Ryan


Jesus The Strength

If you were with us last Sunday you may remember we spoke about how Jesus is meant to be our strength; our vitality; our purpose; the change agent in our lives; and our ability to have self control. Jesus is the vine and we are the branches. He calls us to remain in Him for apart from Him we can do nothing. This is a pretty large claim. After all – how many people have you known who would earnestly look at you and say: “Follow me for apart from me you can do nothing?” That is a claim of the most audacious order.
But is it true? I think this may be one of the biggest problems the church faces today.  We may sing songs about Jesus and all He has done but we often end up living our lives as if He doesn’t exist. Someone called this: “Practical atheism” not that we don’t believe in Jesus – we just live our day to day lives as if He doesn’t exist. In the 90s there was a band called: “Live.”  They wrote a song called: “Operation Spirit.” One of the lines from the song goes like this:
“Hear alot of talk about this Jesus
A man of love a man of strength
but what a man was 2000 years ago
means nothing at all to me today.
He could’ve been
telling me about my higher self
but he only lives inside my prayer
so what he was may have been beautiful
but the pain is right now and right here.”
What are they saying? Yea sure this Jesus was a neat guy but everything He was means nothing to me today. I’ve got my pain and my life and while this Jesus guy lived a beautiful life – it doesn’t help me in the here and now. Here’s the problem – that is simply not what Jesus claimed. Jesus claimed He was the answer to life’s problems and questions; that apart from Him we could do nothing.
I think “Live” points to an issue I’ve often had in my 39 years connected to the church. I hear a lot of talk and yet have seen few lives changed. I’ve even seen how my life has failed to change even though I’ve gone to church. I wrestled deeply with my journey with God. Is this whole thing real? Are we really different because we know Christ? Have we really found an answer here – or just another set of questions? I began to wrestle with this question: If Jesus is really here – what am I missing? This question hit me hard in college. I looked around me and in me; and saw prayerlessness; a lack of change and this fruit of the Spirit Paul talked about.
“God I don’t want to be here if you’re not.  I want more.  If there is more to have…”
This is when I began to come into contact with many writings and challenging experiences and God has been so good and faithful to begin to show me what it means to have a Christ centered life. He has repeatedly challenged my thinking through the years. Bringing me face to face with the destructive ways I think – and how my mind needs to be transformed – and that this is a slow process. God has repeatedly brought me back to my need for relationship with Him and with His church; And He has stoked a fire in me to Share the Gospel with others and to get out there and do the things Jesus did.  So as my mind and my relationships; and my life changes; it grows to look more and more like Christ. This is what it is meant to be. We are meant to look more and more like Christ. Let me remind you of this Scripture:
For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.  Romans 8:29.
He knew you before time and His plan; that you would be conformed to the image of His Son – that you would look more and more like Jesus.
Isn’t this crazy!!!! Bring it back to Christmas. A baby lying in a manger; so many years ago; was there so you could be brought into a process of becoming more and more like Jesus! To have Jesus as the center and the strength of your life.  Amazing.
Have a great week everybody.  may you find your strength in our precious King Jesus!
Pastor Ryan


Jesus The Hope

WHAT DO YOU PLACE YOUR HOPE IN?
That is the major question from last week’s service. We as humans place our hope in all kinds of things. It’s natural for us to do so. Scientists tell us that as organisms we are always trying to achieve a sense of balance and safety in life and that when things get out of whack we fight to get that balance back. They call it “homeostasis.” We often put our hope in things that help us feel balanced; safe or happy because we are constantly seeking homeostasis in the moment.  The interesting thing is just how God doesn’t always seem to be concerned about this. He doesn’t always care to make us feel balanced – safe – or happy. He is in the business of real everlasting hope and that is what Christmas is all about.

It seems so interesting or ironic to think about how real everlasting hope was once found in the form of a baby in the midst of filth and poverty; born in complete anonymity; hunted by ferocity; with every strike against Him – and yet here was the hope of mankind: Fragile; tiny; and lowly. A lot of the stuff we place our hope in tends to be big – advertised; glitzy, glamorous; complete with huge promises, or we have people singing songs about it on the radio. The irony of the Christmas story is how there is none of this here. Hey; even after all this time – the hope of the manger is still easily obscured to us by all the glitz and glamor of Christmas time – yet the eternal everlasting hope of the manger shines more brightly throughout history than any of the things we put our hope in. Ten thousand years from now we will look back not on the 70 or 80 Christmas’s we celebrated – or how successful our stock portfolio was – or how many friends we had on Facebook – or where our kids went to college – or how big our inheritance we that we left for our kids – or if our kids remembered us fondly after we died. No, ten thousand years from now we will look back at that moment in the manger as the moment hope broke into the world – almost unseen – almost unknown – with very little fanfare; but quiet; peaceful even.

This week, my hope is for you to be reminded of the hope of the manger.

Here’s a song for you this week:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXDGE_lRI0E

Have a great week everybody

Pastor Ryan



Jesus The Humble Servant

Hi Everyone!

I want to thank Dennis for opening the Scriptures with us and taking time to explore a powerful truth about Jesus. He is a humble servant. As a matter of fact – it is often said that the Gospel of Mark is written with the intention to communicate this theme. John Mark wanted to communicate in his gospel that Jesus is a suffering servant and the Messiah. I appreciated Dennis’s point in bringing us back to Philippians. Let me remind you of what Paul says to us in this powerful letter:

Philippians 2:5-11

5 You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.

6 Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.

7 Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form,

8 he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.

9 Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names,

10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

As we examine just who Jesus is this Christmas – there are some powerful lessons for us to learn and for us to try to emulate. One of these years I’d like to do a series titled:  “How to survive the holidays – with our ______ intact.” This is a great point to emphasize in a series like that. How do we survive with our hearts; heads; souls intact? Make Christmas more about serving Christ and others and less about serving ourselves. Maybe this is a point of emphasis for us this week. How do we keep close to our hearts that Jesus becoming a baby in a manger – and then becoming the sacrificial lamb of God to save us – was an act of service? He served us even though we did nothing to deserve it! Maybe it starts for us – every time we see a manger – or a nativity scene – to be reminded that this is a picture of one of the greatest acts of service the world HAS and WILL ever see.

When we are reminded of the great act of Jesus to serve mankind – to serve us – it is not a far leap for us to be reminded of Paul’s call for us to serve each other. What might it look like for us to seek to serve others this holiday season? To do some specific things to love on others and meet needs.

Lately my children have been writing their christmas gift wish lists. I’m often reminded of how ironic it is – that this is Jesus’ birthday party and we are giving each other presents. Do we give Jesus presents on His birthday? Well – that’s an interesting question. I think Jesus may be one of the toughest people to shop for ever! How do you give a guy who has the whole world in His hands a present??? But then again – didn’t He make it clear what He would love for Christmas? Do we stop and ask ourselves or maybe even ask Him: “Lord Jesus – what would you like for Christmas this year?”

My family is beginning to ask this question. I think if you were to search the Scriptures looking for this – you’d find some pretty clear Christmas present ideas for Jesus: Serve and love the poor – the oppressed – the widows and orphans – and serve each other. I think He’d also love time with you this Christmas. You are His beloved. I think He’d love to spend time with you. So there are all kinds of ways to give Jesus presents but it seems serving each other would be a huge start.

I pray you might be blessed this Christmas as we follow the example of our great Savior and King; Jesus; the humble servant. I want to give you a couple links of websites that can help you give a really great gift to Jesus this Christmas:

http://www.compassion.com/

http://www.worldvision.org/

Be blessed my friends!!!!

Pastor Ryan

 



Christians: Built to Build

Hi everyone –

As we begin this week’s 2nd Look I want to direct you to click here and watch a story of a young man who lived in my hall when I worked at Biola.

This is a perfect example of what I was talking about on Sunday. We have been given skills and talents and special gifts for the common good – the trick is figuring out how to use our gifts for the benefit of the kingdom! Zach lived in my hall when I supervised a dormitory at Biola. I remember him always being a quieter guy – very respectful and creative. It’s so awesome to see him using his talents to give Jesus glory.

On Sunday we looked at Bezalel and Oholiab – two guys who were appointed and empowered by God to build His tabernacle. This was a place that would become central to the nation of Israel’s life with God. It would be God’s house among His people. This was a big task – a huge job that most would find intimidating. It’s interesting how God allows us to join Him on even His biggest tasks out there.

The point I was making on Sunday was that God does this over and over again. He has a big task that needs to get done – He brings us along – empowers us and gets the task done! Each of us is wired to join God on some task He is undertaking. Each of us is specifically constructed to make a unique contribution to what God is doing here on earth. I have two great examples for you.

If you missed either of the things I’m about to talk about – you really missed out. But do not worry – we will do these things again:

1) The worship and prayer night: At the worship and prayer night we saw a group of people using their passion and talents for music and prayer to lift up God’s praise. As a congregation we joined together and praised Jesus! Such a powerful night and while God could just put a huge flaming cloud over our church and draw us there – then have a choir of Angels erupt the heavens in song – this is not what He did. He chose to use humans to do His work.

2) The prayer day – was another great example of people in our church using their God given creativity – passion – and effort to make a really cool innovative experience here at church. I was so proud of our prayer team for the fact that they would put something so simple and yet helpful together. What a great experience for me to pray. Next time I’m bringing my kids with me.

I see examples of people using their God given gifts to serve every day. One of the biggest challenges however is that there are still many who haven’t really discovered the ways God is calling them to make a difference. Let me give some thoughts that might help you if you’re someone trying to figure out how to get involved:

1) Passion – This is a great question to start with. When you think of working at the church, are there things you get excited about? Is there something out there that gets you mad – or motivates you to get going? This might be a great indicator of an area God stirs your heart to ministry, service and action. When I think of people and ministering to them – the thing I get most excited about is when I see people grow and lives changed. I have found I want to devote myself to helping others grow especially in their relationship with Jesus. If you want a good indicator of what some of your passions might be – look at your bookshelf. If you’re a reader – you may find your bookshelf tells the story of what you are passionate about. Or look at the things you are often drawn to learn more about; the things you get animated about when you talk about them – or the things you think often about. These are all indicators of passion that God has placed within you.

2) Natural fit –  Are there things that seem to come naturally to you? Certain jobs you excel in? Are there certain environments where you feel more at home than others? What would people tell someone in need to call you about? For example – if someone needed help fixing their car – people would not tell this person to call me. But if someone was having marital problems – I might be someone this person would be pointed to. Natural fit can often be an indicator of wiring. Certain people are a great fit for children’s ministry. They love kids – have a great disposition around them and a huge reservoir of patience. Others feel – from the minute a child walks in the room, that their energy and vitality is draining away. They feel uncomfortable. This is a good indicator that children’s ministry is not a good fit for them. Sometimes we think the things we do naturally or that we receive joy from doing are things God would not want us to do. After all – doesn’t He want us to suffer as His servants? Sometimes our path leads us down a road of suffering and trials even when we are where we are supposed to be – but that doesn’t mean we aren’t wired for it. Jeremiah – a prophet for God – suffered greatly in His service to God and yet there was no doubt he was passionate and wired to do what he was doing. I read the book of Jeremiah in the Bible and I cannot see him as a guy who would remain silent and uninvolved if he didn’t have this ministry calling. He was naturally wired to be a man with a voice.

These are two indicators of God’s wiring. There are many others we can look at if we had the space. My hope for you is that you find God’s wiring for you; or you take joy in how he has wired you and use this to serve the kingdom of God. There is no better thing to do because what you are doing has eternal significance. Think about it – if God is eternal and He is building a kingdom that is eternal; then it stands to reason that the contribution you make has eternal significance as well.  Is there any other endeavor we can be part of that has that kind of distinction to it?

Have a great week everybody!

Pastor Ryan