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:
1 Corinthians 1:17 says: “For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel– not with words of human wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power.”
Just think about that for a second. That’s a monumental verse. It’s not only that it’s not necessary to preach other things on top of the Gospel. It doesn’t mean that it’s just not important to talk about cultural transformation that can occur with the Gospel. It’s not that it’s just not necessary to talk about the logical validity of the worldview of Christianity for societal outcomes.
This actually means that if we try to rationalize the Gospel to someone we’re preaching to, we are actually emptying they Gospel of its very power. This is crazy to me. I’m already bad enough at sharing the Gospel, but truth be told the times I’ve resolved to know nothing except Christ crucified with a non-believer are so incredibly limited that I’m ashamed of myself. I try to add in all these fancy, wise-sounding additions to the Gospel and the whole time the cross of Christ is begging for me to stop so that it can take center stage and tell the story of the God-man who died on it to pay the righteous wrath that had to be spent somewhere because of mankind’s sin, and because it was paid on the cross and the Son, Jesus Christ, was accepted as a worthy sacrifice this was shown to be accepted through his ressurection showing that death no longer holds sway over those who believe in Jesus Christ as their final righteousness and hope.
Honestly, it makes the Gospel easy. It doesn’t make it cool. It doesn’t make it sexy. But it does simplify the message. I resolve not to get lost in future Gospel conversations trying to beat around the bush. I resolve to get to a real man who was really crucified for real sin. I will know this and nothing more with non-believers.
Favorite meeting of the day:
No meetings today.
Hardest part of my day:
Aside from being sick, just seeing our ABF be really small. I like the growth that has come. I like that we’ve got energy, vim, and vigor in our class. So to be down to 10 people (praise God I think this is small now!) is tough. I know many of those folks are in some other topical ABFs, and that is fine. I really don’t mind that for any individual. But it is deflating and taxing to try and get consistency, especially with the age range we minister to.
Favorite moment of the day:
Listening to my Sunday evening service. I haven’t listened to it in awhile. I was really down going into Sunday evening today. I just haven’t felt very confident lately. My life just feels a bit “stuck” and I don’t know where it’s going. I don’t know much of anything. I’m very small and powerless. This world is big and I’m a blip on a planet in a small slice of human history. I don’t like it. But listening to the message I got to deliver back on December 17th, 2017 was incredibly fun and it made me love the Lord that my own words could be so encouraging 6 months later when I just see darkness around me.
What was the weather like today?:
It was very hot today. I don’t like my leather seats much. I got out of my car for Sunday evening service and Stephen Martin said, “That’s some intense Bible reading you’ve been doing!” in reference to a very sweaty back I had.
Most unfaithful moment of my day:
I don’t know if this is a “moment” so much as an attitude. Lately I’ve just felt that I’m walking close to a line of some old ways where I’m a bit too sarcastic and while I don’t feel that I’ve made fun of anyone yet, I always am leary of that habit. It can be funny sometimes, yes. It can be fun, yes. But sometimes I leave places and realize that I wasn’t nearly as encouraging or thoughtful or kind as I could have or should have been. And ultimately, I’d really hope that someone finds me kind and gentle than that they find me funny. And I’m not sure that when I’m being my funniest that I’m my most kind and gentle. I don’t know. I never know where the line is or what people are thinking of me. I just need to be careful of this.
What am I currently reading?:
Daily Bible Reading – Esther 1-5
Church History by Eusebius – No reading for this today.
On the Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther – No reading for this today.
Holiness by J.C. Ryle – No reading for this today.
Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper – No reading for this tonight.
Out of the Silent Planet by C.S. Lewis – The hrossa talking about the idea of an event not being contained only to the moment it occurred but actually growing sweeter as it is remembered was very compelling. They only have sex and procreate for a few years of their life. Ransom wants to know why, if it such a good experience, they ever stop. The hrossa don’t understand this question at first. They just understand so much better that to remember thankfully the experience of something ought to be just as rich as the actual experience itself. I could use more of that mentality in my own life.
Also, this book is a lot more fun when I can see more of the Bible and great catechisms in it. For example, the “Old one” being described as one “without body, parts, or passions.” is straight from the Westminster Confession. That’s fun to pick up on this time around as I know more and can see some of Lewis’ Anglican roots coming out.
What was for dinner?:
Eggs, a biscuit, and a few strawberries. A small glass of Dr. Pepper at Guy Wilcox’s house as we watched the game.
Song of the day:
Thy Word by Michael W. Smith – This was the perfect song to end the day with. As I felt I am trodding on a gloomy pathway recently, I need to recenter myself on God’s word. I don’t know where I’m going. I don’t know what the Lord will do with me. I really just don’t know much and there’s things and opportunities I am always weighing. Which girl might the Lord bring into my life that finally would be someone I can partner with in the Gospel? Will he even bring a girl into my life like that? When will the pastorate start becoming more real? What do I do with my current job? How do I make my ministries fruitful so that they take on lives of their own independent of me? There’s questions there I just don’t have the answers to.
But there’s a shred of light just there, right in front of my feet. It’s enough to take a simple step. That’s the step I need to take. It’s the only I know that won’t lead to quicksand. And I don’t want to sink. I want to be faithful.
Quote of the day:
“There’s only two ways to live. One leads to prospering. One leads to perishing.” — Trey Richardson
A succinct way of describing the dichtomous lifestyles Psalm 1 presents. There’s no middle ground. Let me be found on the side of prosperity at the end of my days.
Prayer of the day:
Lord, I admit that today I have trouble seeing how I’m prospering. Yet I know that the prospering only truly comes as I end my life and come face to face with you. It’s a future kind of prospering that most fully gets delivered. In the meantime, Lord, let my heart truly, hungrily, and thirstily yearn for the way of righteousness where I am planted by the stream. Help me to bear fruit and let not my leafs wither even in the wasteland and heat of uncertainty. You are good, Lord. You come and stand on our behalf even when we are too weary to lift our weapons and continue fighting for ourselves. You are my help when I am to weak to trudge any further. Hold me fast, Lord.