The A.D. Chronicles

If you have ever read a Brock and Bodie Thoene novel you already know that they are well-written, historically accurate and fun, exciting reads!

Brock and Bodie have written over 45 books. Their series include: Zion Chronicles, Zion Covenant, The Shiloh Legacy, the Saga of the Sierras and more!

However it is their latest series, the A.D. Chronicles that is their most significant novels to date. Heavily researched and well-written, these novels make the life and times of Jesus, the era in which he lived, leap off the page. You gain a huge cultural understanding of the times and I came away wanting to dig deeper into the Gospels, reading them with fresh eyes.

If you have never read a Thoene novel, over 10 million have been sold to date, I would highly recommend you start today. Pick up the first book in the A.D. Chronicles and let yourself be transported to another place and time!

The A.D. Chronicles are published by Tyndale.

Brock and Bodie's website is www.thoenebooks.com


Am I ashamed of Jesus?

Apparently I am ashamed of Jesus. I did not know this was true. I pastor a church and proclaim His Name every Sunday. Throughout the week I share Jesus with those I meet via my job at the Salvation Army. I spend time counseling others and trying to point them to the Savior. Yet every week I am told that if I did not FW the latest "Christian" email spam, then I was ashamed of Him and that He would deny me before God because I had denied Him before men!

How did this happen? How did Scriptures like Mark 8:38, where Jesus had been talking about taking up our cross and following Him, get misappropriated to mean if we did not FW emails we were dishonoring God? Why is Matthew 10:33 flying around in my inbox telling me to FW long emails of nonsensical stuff to everyone on my list? Why am I being browbeaten by Luke 9:26 and told that I don't love God enough if I don't FW these emails to all my friends and the person who sent it to me?


You can call this a rant. It's ok.

I find myself disturbed by this misuse of Scripture.

The Bible is God's Word. According to 2nd Timothy 3:16, "Every Scripture passage is inspired by God. All of them are useful for teaching, pointing out errors, correcting people, and training them for a life that has God's approval."

Now I believe email and the internet can be used as powerful tools in sharing God's Word. To teach, encourage, correct and train people in the the Word. However when we manipulate Scripture to encourage people to send cutesy emails around the world we do a major disservice to the body of Christ!

The sad part is some of these emails are really interesting but when I read a misuse of Scripture I immediately delete them. So before sending the next FW of the latest Christian Chain Letter stop and look at the Scripture you are sending. Is it applicable, appropriate and used in a way that will glorify God? If it is then by all means send it. If it only furthers the "blessings and cursing" of a chain letter with a bit of Scripture added, do everyone a favor and hit delete.


Locusts and Wild honey Anyone?

My daughter was reading Matthew this week and found John the Baptist's diet of locust and wild honey (Matthew 3:4) to be a bit....well.....disgusting.

While talking with her I realized how beneficial that diet would have been to ol' John.

Now I myself would have to be pretty desperate....ok...majorly desperate...and a bit concerned if I was hearing from the Lord, before I would attempt this diet myself.

However I did a bit of research...ok I googled it, and found out that locusts are high in protein and low and fat. They are a rich resource of many vitamins. Honey aids in constipation, boosts your energy, helps with sore throats, etc. I can see how, while preaching in the desert, this diet would greatly aid in accomplishing what God sent John the Baptist to do.

God does provide when He calls us forth to do His work. It may not be the way we want but even in the desert places He can sustain us.

Now if I can just find a recipe for honey glazed locusts......


5 Questions with Anne Jackson

Welcome to 5 Questions With.....

Today's guest is Anne Jackson. Anne is on staff at Cross Point Church in Nashville, TN and is the author of Mad Church Disease. She is an active blogger and has traveled with Compassion International

And now without further delay, on to the questions:

Hi Anne,

Question 1: What one word would describe your current relationship with God?


Question 2: You were very open in your book, Mad Church Disease. Was there ever a moment when you hesitated in being so transparent?

A few times...sharing that I still struggle with trusting people in leadership, all while taking a new job in leadership, was a little risky. Also sharing the quick bit about abuse was difficult.

Question 3: Your book covers a fair bit of ground in the area of burnout. How long did it take you to write the book?

It had been in my head for six months, and then took another six months to put it on paper. Then it went through six months of editing...but there are chunks of it I wrote two or three years before the book was even an idea.

Question 4: How big a part do you think fear plays in the area of burnout?

A ginormous part! I think we're afraid to show we struggle, afraid to ask questions, to share what we think, afraid to get fired, afraid to lose our position and power...so we keep quiet.

Question 5: If there was a Christian biography written about your life what would the title be?

The Girl who Turned to Chocolate: A True Story of "You are what you eat"

Thank you Anne for participating in this.

There you have it folks. Please go out and purchase Anne Jackson's book today.

To see past 5 Question guests, check out the rotating interview links on the sidebar.


Mad Church Disease, Part 2

I have now finished this book I partially reviewed earlier. I will say again that if you can get a copy of Mad Church Disease do so today. Having been awfully close to burnout myself, including the recent past, I found this book to be a Godsend. This book is a must for anyone in ministry, leadership or just living life day to day.

I found the book to be challenging and God used it to help me re-evaluate how much is on my plate on a day to day basis. I started making recent changes that have allowed me to clear that plate more and to increase my time in more important areas, like spending time with my family and the Lord.

Warning: The book is frank and not for the faint of heart. It's for those who need to have a heart challenge!

Read and be blessed!

Mad Church Disease is published by Zondervan.


Do I Really Mean It?

I remember one time a friend in Croatia stated she would not sing certain worship songs. When I asked her to explain she stated, "Why should I sing that I surrender all if I am truly not surrendering all? I do not want to lie to God."

At the time I thought that was a bit extreme but I now see what she means. Today I had these lines from a worship song bouncing in my head:

All of my ambitions, hopes and plans
I surrender these into Your hands.

It got me to thinking.....do I really mean that? Am I surrendering my ambitions, hopes and plans? As I thought about it I could not honestly say I was doing that.

See this week I have been thinking a lot about surrender. To surrender is to give up, to relinquish. Are we willing to lay it all down, even our lives, for Christ? The spiritual answer would be, Yes! In reality is that my answer?

Would I really let go of everything? Better yet would I willingly let go of everything if God asks?

I'd like to say yes. I really would.

I know this is where God wants me....surrendering daily....at times I struggle. It's easy in some areas...harder in others. For example I can easily surrender my media choices to Him. It's harder when it comes to my own health or that of my family. Do I really believe God can do all things? To protect me and those around me?

Father please help me to trust You more. To not hold on to the things you say to release and to cling tightly to You! I want to trust you, with everything, not fearing this means you will take it but knowing you have a plan that far exceeds any I could come up with. I believe Lord, Help my unbelief. (Mark 9:24) In Jesus Name, Amen!


God Keeps His Word!

I was 15 and had given my heart to Jesus Christ just over a year before. I was contemplating what I wanted to do with my life. I remember wanting to be a lawyer as a kid...don't ask me why. I thought about teaching or even preaching....both which God has allowed me to do over the years.

The one thing I had not thought of was missions.

One night while sleeping I had a dream. I remember this dream even now, 23 years later, (no old man jokes) because it was so vivid.

In the dream I was looking at a huge world map and Russia, Africa and Israel popped off the map in a kind of 3D type thing and in the dream I sensed the Lord saying I would be a missionary and go to these countries.

I've reflected on the dream from time to time. Like 14 years ago when I finally got the chance to go to Russia. It was literally a dream come true and I learned so much about Him on that trip...not to mention getting engaged to my future wife.

Recently I was reading a mission biography when I began thinking how I still have not seen Israel or Africa.

Deuteronomy 7:9 says, "Keep in mind that the LORD your God is the only God. He is a faithful God, who keeps his promise and is merciful to thousands of generations of those who love him and obey his commands."

I have found that to be true. Just as quickly as I was reading this mission bio and the thought came to me how I had not seen Africa and Israel I felt the Lord show me how wrong I was.

I have not physically shared the Lord in Africa or Israel...yet I have been there! I have shared the Gospel of Christ via this blog in Africa and Israel. I love seeing those countries pop up as hits on this blog. When the Lord first showed me this dream I had never heard of the Internet...it was still a ways out from the use it gets today.

I may one day get to physically be in Africa or Israel but I will look at that as icing on the cake. The Lord is faithful and true...I have been able to share Him around the world.

Stay encouraged. He does answer prayers and He does fulfill His promises...maybe not the way you want or expect but definitely the way that will allow Him to receive the most Glory!


5 Questions with Bruxy Cavey

Welcome to 5 Questions With.....

Today's guest is Bruxy Cavey. Bruxy is the Teaching Pastor of The Meeting House - A church for people who are not into church. The Meeting House currently has 8 locations in Ontario. He is also the author of The End of Religion.

And now on to the questions:

Hi Bruxy

Question 1: What one word would describe your current relationship with God?

Christ-centred (if that feels too much
like a two-word cheat, then we can go with Christocentric!)

Question 2: Your book is very relationship focused. How do you, as a Teaching Pastor, maintain relationship in a church your size?

I'm part of a small home community within our larger congregation, just as we encourage everyone to be. That's where we get to live out significant aspects of the Jesus life. The Meeting House is really a family of home churches that also have Sunday services together. So my upward and outward relationships really start there.

Question 3: When you see Jesus face to face, after loving on Him for a time, what is one question you would ask Him?

Why me?

Question 4: What do you think is the biggest hurdle for the church today in relating to the world around us?

Lack of humility. Christians claim to be re-made on the inside, but we cloud people's view of God at work in us because we've wrapped our regeneration in religion instead of repentance. Repentance, like faith, isn't something we do once to become a Christian, but an attitude we carry with us into our relationships, always being ready to learn, to change, to grow. When we are ready to approach our world with a repentant disposition, we will also be modeling for them what we will also call them to experience.

Question 5: If there was a Christian biography written about your life what would the title be?

An Irreligious Life: The Bruxy Cavey Story


An Unlikely Candidate: The Bruxy Cavey Story


The Face of Jesus, The Body of Buddha: The Bruxy Cavey Story

Thank you such much Bruxy for taking the time to answer these questions.

All the Best to you! Peace, Bruxy

There you have it folks. Please go out and purchase Bruxy Cavey's book today.

To see past 5 Question guests, check out the rotating interview links on the sidebar.


The End of Religion

I came across a book in May of last year that so challenged and blessed me I could not stop raving about it. I have been recommending it far and wide.

That book is The End of Religion by Bruxy Cavey.

The book makes the point that Jesus came to renew the relationship between God and man not to start a new "religion." From the opening chapter this book had me going back to the Scriptures and looking with fresh eyes.

Written with crisp style Bruxy Cavey dives right into the thick of things without mincing words. He goes right to the Word of God and draws out things I never noticed before.

If you have not read this book yet I would HIGHLY recommend it.

The End of Religion is published by Navpress.


The All Sufficient God - Just A Thought #31

Philippians 4:19 says "And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus."

According to one definition in the dictionary, sufficient means "enough to meet the needs of a situation or a proposed end."

What an awesome description of an all sufficient God! Too often when life throws us a curve we are guilty of trying to figure out and solve the problems that God already has answers for; if we would go to Him on bended knee first we would see His solutions. Over the last month, Sarah and I have been talking to more and more people about how only God can meet all of our needs. When we have a lack, even before we know we will have a lack, God is there to meet that need. It may not be in the way we would like or think it should be done, but I can attest to the fact that God never, ever abandons His children.

I think back over my years as a teen and even our years as a missionary. There were hard years there. As a teen we lost nearly everything. As a missionary there were times our support was so low it would not even cover our actual living expenses. Yet I look back and I see a time where we never went hungry, we never went without clothing. Even when we had no home God provided a place to lay our head.

I think in Christianity today we often confuse our needs and our wants. God does supply all of our needs. He is truly faithful to His Word! Yet many times He will not supply all of our wants. Is that fair? Yes. God knows what we need before we even ask, I can tell numerous stories to testify of that. Yet, He does not always do what we want. He is not a puppet on a string to be pulled in whatever direction we want. We are not in control and the sooner we realize that, the better! God will not give us our wants when they go against His plan for our lives.

Oh, some people still try to fight God. They figure they know best and they take and do what they want anyways...and for a season may even look blessed, but I've talked to many who have gotten their "heart's desire" only to find their desire leaves a bitter taste in their mouth. However, the more we seek God and His will for our lives, the more His desires will become our desires and then we will see Him granting us those things.

Many go into marriage thinking their spouse will meet all their needs....and the high divorce rate will tell you how that works. Yet if those couples would put God at the center of their marriage and seek Him first, they would find that He is the ultimate provider. Our marriages will be healthier when we quit trying to get the other partner to do the things only God can do.

Only God is all sufficient to meet our every need. It starts with us going on bended knee and laying our rights down at the foot of the cross. We must walk in humility.

Lets allow God, the ultimate provider, to meet our needs. We'll never be the same!