Why I Write These:
These are written in honor of my grandfather, Leon Milton Buttermore, who has a memory that I am envious of, and I hope that by doing this I am able to be the kind of man who starts to treasure the things given him.
Godly thought of the day:
Acts 7:51 says: “You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit!”
Stephen’s impassioned speech culminates, I think, in these words. It is a warning to me to not put too much stock in traditionalism. As Brad once said in a sermon, “Tradition is the living faith of the dead, but traditionalism is the dead faith of the living.”
It’s not wrong to enjoy the benefits and wisdom of those who have gone on ahead of me. But I must never become so stiff-necked that I cannot see past those things to remember that Christ is alive and active and his Spirit is beckoning me onward, sometimes even to uncomfortable places.
Favorite meeting of the day:
I had the opportunity to get dinner with Scott Bielinski. I find him an immensely great guy to spend time with! Very thoughtful and a mind and heart that is on fire for the Lord. He’s the kind of brother that makes you feel confident that you’re prepared to walk through the fires and travails of life with God’s people.
Hardest part of my day:
Writing my lesson today for Tuesday morning has been hard. I think I finally got it to lock into place! It took me forever and a lot of writing to get it there, but this lesson was a bit of a struggle.
I’m realizing that, for whatever reason, I’m not wrestling as much with the fruit of the Spirit lessons I’m writing. I’m sure I need them in increasing measure, but perhaps I don’t have as hard of a time wrestling my way through these things as some of the other lessons I’ve had?
But in some ways, I think this is healthy because not every sermon you’ll ever write will be your deepest struggle or problem at that time and yet you must be faithful enough to deliver the word to God’s people well. So I’m trying to learn what that looks like where my sermon is not exactly something I’m wrestling with intensely, but still find the beauty of the Bible and allow the Spirit to speak through my lessons.
Also, I wanted it noted that Duke lost today and that’s not really on the top of my mind. I even went to church instead of watching the 2nd half of the game. I feel like that’s a sign of progress.
Favorite moment of the day:
I got to see Chris Hembree at church today! Thanks to Ryan Troglin for pulling some strings to let me out of childcare so I could do that. It was appreciated and Troglin saying that “I do enough already.” and finding ways to let me sit with my friend meant a lot to me. Chris was there with his girlfriend and parents.
Close second on this was that there was a moment during the sermon where Brad was talking about how we are “chosen” according to Ephesians 1. He talked about how great it is to realize someone has eyes for us and thinks we’re of value. He mentioned being asked on a date, and I could see the girl I like and I kind of started daydreaming a bit, if I’m honest, and then I realized that how I was looking at her was but the barest foretaste of what Christ looked at me with when he and the Father decided to lay the plan that they were crafting before they even laid the foundations of the world.
What was the weather like today?:
A pretty nice day! Slightly chilly? But not too bad. I felt comfortable all day.
Most unfaithful moment of my day:
I got caught up talking to Scott and without really realizing it, I ate 5 pieces of pizza. Yes, I was hungry. But that’s too much. I need to be careful. It was just thoughtless eating as we were intensely in conversation. Not the worst thing, perhaps. But if you have too many of those moments, you find yourself a rather large individual. I want to avoid that. Guess I better get to the gym tomorrow, huh?
What am I currently reading?:
Daily Bible Reading – Judges 14-17
Dangerous Calling by Paul Tripp – No reading for this today.
Church History by Eusebius – No reading for this today.
Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave by Ed Welch – No reading for this tonight.
On the Incarnation by Athanasius – I like how Athanasius pointed out that the proof that the Jews are in folly is that Jerusalem was destroyed. He also pointed out how there are no more prophets. God is not speaking to the Jews. That should be incredbily disquieting to the Jewish people. God never stopped speaking for that long to them.
It also makes sense that the Jewish people have become what they are now. You stereotypically think of them and it may be some New York banker who is very wealthy. Of course, if you were part of a religion where your God had not spoken to you in ~2400 years and you were still waiting for a Messiah your heart would also grow cold and money and the pursuits of the world would take over you.
But Athanasius pointing out how all these things are allowed to lapse into silence is rather unlike God, and points to how Jesus was, in fact, the Christ that they so desperately longed for. How sad that so many missed him.
No Place for Truth: Or Whatever Happened to Evangelical Theology? by David F. Wells – No reading for this tonight.
What was for dinner?:
Tiny Tim’s pizza and water. At least I drank water instead of ordering a drink. I almost did, but that much sugar would have made me feel awful.
Song of the day:
Trapped In the Drive Thru by Weird Al – Okay, so this one is silly. But Scott and I talked about it and it is hilarious. If you want a funny, funny song you have to listen to this. It is a masterpiece.
Quote of the day:
“When we make our salvation about us, we take God and make him a foster parent instead of a father.” — Brad Wheeler
Part of Brad’s sermon today was that people who have foster parents live in trepidation fo being sent back to the orphanage at the slightest of failings. They can never live in peace with their parents.
The beauty of election and God choosing us is that it makes him a father, not a foster parent. He signed the adoption papers in blood– the blood of Jesus Christ. And that paperwork is legal and you can take it to the bank and get a deposit of the Holy Spirit that is good for eternity. What a comfort the doctrine is! I will not pretend it does not have hard questions attached to it. No matter which way you go, you get hard questions.
But this seems to me to be the Biblical teaching and it is the more comforting teaching to know I am held fast by my God, who adopted me as a son so that he might be my father.
Prayer of the day:
Lord, thank you! Before you ever crafted a tree. Before you ever formed a bird or a fish. Before you ever puffed out a cumulonimbus cloud. Before you ever thought to give us an aurora borealis. Before you ever made the expanse of space. Before any foundation of the world or galaxy we now see, you first had a thought for us. You knew who we would be and you made us. You shaped us. And you called us, in Christ Jesus, to be your sons and inheritors. May I live a life worthy of this calling and so show others that they too might be your sons if they accept the name of Jesus Christ as the way, truth, and life. .