Thursday, January 26, 2017

When Claiming to be a Christian is Blasphemy

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)


    Anybody who read my comments on former First Lady, Senator, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and present President Donald Trump knows I have deep reservations about both.

    I struggled long and hard on my way into the voting booth in Garden Prairie, Illinois back on November 8.

    I don't like what I know about Hillary and don't like what I don't know about Donald.

    In short, no one has been able to convince me that Hillary is not a criminal and Donald is not a roll of the dice.

    Always disinclined to Fletcherian situation ethics, I found myself leaning one way over the other as the lesser of two evils; which really unsettled me in that I've always assumed the lesser of two evils is still evil and...

    The deciding factor for me was I could never and will never and didn't vote for someone who advocates and enables partial birth abortion.

    While I don't consider myself to be a one-issue kinda guy, I've been to Yad Vashem in Jerusalem many times, the memorialized sites of former concentration camps in Germany while studying in Heidelberg back in the early 70s, and...have come to conclude that people who advocate and enable partial birth abortion make Nazis look like Brownies.

    Of course, there are people who don't know what partial birth abortion is; and when I explain it to them, they cannot and often won't believe it is practiced in America apart from criminal prosecution as a legal way to end...a life.  They cannot and often won't believe that such a barbaric procedure is permitted in the United States of America; and when I told 'em before November 8 that one of the candidates supposedly dedicated to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" is an advocate and enabler of partial birth abortion, they could not and often would not believe me.

    So, yes, there are people who voted for the advocate and enabler because they just didn't know the truth about that candidate; which is why I've concluded people who would vote for someone who advocates and enables such horror are ignorant, deceived, defiant, apathetic, or co-conspiratorial with...satanos.

    I guess this is kinda related to the last edition ("Dearly Beloved").

    People, especially pastors, who claim to be "Christian" pastors yet undermine the exclusive claim including the inclusive invitation of Jesus as Lord and Savior in John 14 as representative of Christology consistent with over 2K years of Biblical, confessional, constitutional, historical, traditional, and common sense Christianity can hardly be classified as "Christian" pastors unless over 2K years reimagined, denied, disregarded, debunked, and deserted.

    I would add anyone who advocates and enables partial birth abortion and claims to be a "Christian" is reimagining, denying, disregarding, debunking, and deserting the existential ethics of Jesus so quickly assayed by getting a Bible with red letters and reading 'em.

    Yeah, the 1st Amendment is still around; so people can say whatever the hell/heaven they wanna say.

    People are free to say they're "Christians" if they wanna say it.

    Nobody can/will stop 'em.

    Lots of folks in mainline denominations and emergent churches and sideline sects and cults are going around calling themselves "Christians" even though any connection between 'em and what was formerly considered Christianity according to over 2K years only coincidental.

    Maybe I'm making too much of the issue(s); and if I'm wrong and you can point out my error by Jesus, Holy Scripture, and common sense, I'll confess, pray and try to repent, and ask forgiveness.

    But, c'mon, Christianity used to stand for something/Someone.

    Listening to too many of today's clergy and the people that they've made twice as fit for...can be so confusing.

    They make it seem as if Jesus can be whoever you want Him to be and Christianity is whatever you wanna think it is.

    Have you ever wondered what the Founder not the latest version would say about all of this?


    Matthew 7:21-23.

    While you're at it, read that again after reading the eight preceding verses.

    There's more to claiming to be a Christian than claiming to be a the end.


Blessings and Love!


Salt! Shine! Leavenate!
Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!




Monday, January 23, 2017

About My Beloved

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)


    Because I have loved the PCUSA and its predecessors and sister mainline franchises so much in their previous incarnations as introducing me to Jesus, nurturing my faith in Jesus, and enabling my undershepherding call for Jesus, I have prayed and labored for their return to Him as esteemed in over 2K years of Biblical, confessional, constitutional, historical, traditional, and common sense Christianity.

    I weep in prayer almost every day over what has become of them.

    Previously, in a book that few bought and runs behind the toothy Texan by almost a trillion to one to force humility (Fifteen Secrets), I have said the problems include unconverted clergy, unconvinced laity, and pharisaical reincarnations substituting organizational order for Biblical authority.

    I threw that out back in 2004.

    Today, I think the problems also include glorified social workers masquerading as pastors who like some of the personal and social ethics of Jesus while having the arrogance to ignore even challenge and condemn most of the personal and social ethics of Jesus and have excluded the eternal that they don't believe for the existential that they kinda like.

    Truth is too many of today's clergy, especially in mainline denominations, never understood what it means to believe Jesus is Lord and Savior by the book, never really believed what they pledged at ordination and lied to get a job that's glorified social work, or changed their minds sometime after ordination and don't have the integrity to quit because they're in denominations with unconverted clergy, unconvinced laity, and pharisaical reincarnations enabling their hypocrisy.

    I may be wrong on that; and if shown my error by Jesus, Holy Scripture, and common sense, I will confess my sin, pray and try to repent, and ask forgiveness.


Blessings and Love!


Salt! Shine! Leavenate!
Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!




Friday, January 20, 2017

Inaugural News

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)



Trump, Media, and Jesus

“Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ be ‘No.’”

(Matthew 5:33-37)

          Back in February 1977 when I was making the circuit of neutral pulpits aka ecclesiastical meat markets to hawk my wares, land a job, and prove the previous seven years of college and seminary were worth it, I preached in a franchise church in Oil City, Pennsylvania.

             Because Dr. Macleod taught us in every homiletics class that it’s not only not rude to be on time but we should always arrive at least an hour before worship so that we’re prayed up, calmed, and ready to go, I got to town about two hours before my advertising and their inspecting and had breakfast in a local diner.

          That’s where I came across a cartoon that I’ve kept ever since that reminds me not to be a speck-inspector when I’m log-impaired.

          Specifically, it has a bald pastor introducing prayer from a pulpit, “And at this time our hearts go out to all those pure and perfect newsmen who search for sin in others.”

          As I’ve watched President Trump joust with media who are so quick to highlight the lowlights of whatever dirt can be dig up about him, I’ve often wondered about them; recalling another warning from Jesus about the mercy to be received will be determined by the mercy extended.

          I also remember Sproul, a theologian who lived not too far from Oil City, who often said, “Pray for mercy!  Don’t pray for justice or you may get it!”

          Or as my home pastor the Rev. Harold F. Mante often reminded me, “There’s two ways of looking at grace – getting what you don’t deserve and not getting what you deserve.”

          Besides, I’ve also learned over the years that lots of people who are busy pointing out the sins in others are usually hiding some juicy ones of their own in the Lombardi strategy of the best defense being a good offense; or lighting fires in somebody’s else’s backyard keeps people from seeing your house is burning down.

          Simply, I don’t think our President’s past, present, and future will be judged by the only Judge who counts as that much better or that much worse than ours.

          So it hasn’t bothered me at all when the President doesn’t take questions from people who are always looking for the bad in him; or as I tell young pastors, “You must love everybody; but you don’t have to smoke cigars with ‘em.”

          Frankly, there’s more and more and more fake news out there being generated by people who don’t tell the truth about anyone or anything.

          People in churches and most organizations know how that goes.

          If you can’t win or get your way by telling the truth or persuading others to your version of the truth, you make up stuff to win or get your way.

          Really, there are people in our world and too often worldly church who don’t really care about those rules in Exodus 20 and throughout God-breathed revelation; for they say, in effect, “I know that’s what Jesus and the Bible say, but I think…”

          How do you think our church as well as nation and world got into such a mess?

          Sooner or later and definitely in the end, God does not bless those who dishonor Him as personified in Jesus and prescribed in the Bible.

          Yeah, I find myself laughing every now and then that Trump is the 45th; though the last two or three or four or…have proven anyone can grow up/down/around to become President of the United States of America.

          Yet, I’m among those Americans who believe it’s important to respect the office and trust whoever gets into the Oval Office until they prove they can’t be trusted.

          Moretheless, Christians are Acts 5:29 kinda citizens.

          Unfortunately, our media has been more about inventing news or managing news or ideologically filtering news than reporting it in recent years.  O.K., maybe they’ve always done that; but, eschatologically, it seems to be happening with greater intensity and frequency as of late.

          I’ll never forget talking with the editor of what she thought was a major newspaper about fifteen years ago.  I asked why I hadn’t seen anything about the Confessing Church Movement in the paper; noting it was a very popular movement in our denomination to bring Jesus, Bible, and holiness back into the mainline.  She said, “As you know, I’m an elder at ___ and I’m against the Confessing Church Movement.  That’s why I’ve not run stories about it.”  I said, “I thought your job was to report news instead of deciding what news is good for us.”  Come to think of it, we never talked again.

          I guess it all comes down to this.

          President Trump will be judged - eternally by God and existentially by everybody else – by his trustworthiness.

          Media will be judged in the same way.

          You decide who’s ahead right now.

          While I join you in doing that, we may want to take a long look in the mirror.

          One of the lessons that I learned from Victorious Ministry Through Christ is to dump your garbage before someone digs it up.

          That means it’s better to confess before getting caught.

          People who confess first are usually forgiven quicker.

          People who are caught are never really trusted again.

          Just ask…

          Of course, VMTC got it from the big ten and Jesus who inspired the wisdom, “Tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.”

          I like how Jesus put it: “Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes’ and your ‘No’ be ‘No.’”

          He went on to say, “Anything more doesn’t come from God!”

          “Your word,” He said, “is enough.  To strengthen your promise with a vow shows that something is wrong.”

          Christians don’t need to say, “I swear I’m telling the truth…To be honest…You can trust my word…Let me be honest…Cross my heart and hope to die…”

          Christians are honest by definition.

          Christians are honest to God; and part of being honest to God is being honest with others.

          Read Matthew 25 again.

          When people spend too much time spinning or rationalizing or making excuses and blaming society, poor potty training, and that Hillary lost and Donald won or something or somebody else for their bad behaviors, everybody, especially God, knows they’re lying and nobody trusts liars.

          I think of Dr. McCord who often said, “You must always tell the truth and never lie because lies always catch up with you and truth honors God and never changes.  You don’t have to tell anyone everything that you know; but never lie.  You can say it’s none of their business.  You can say you may talk about it later.  You can say you’ll pray and think about it and get back to them.  But never, ever, lie because it doesn’t honor God and only the truth liberates.’

          It’s the truth about the truth.

          Truth never changes.

          If you tell the truth, no one has to guess or gossip or continue to distrust.

          Time will tell with President Trump.

          Time has already told with too much of today’s media.

          I’m reminded of a doubles tennis tournament many years ago in Kansas City. 

          During the first few rounds, we played by the honors system.

          Well, I hit an ace right down the middle and on the line.

          Immediately, one of our opponents yelled, “Out!”

          “Out?” I shouted incredulously and began to rush the net.

          My partner stopped me and said, “God knows!”

          It’s the truth.

          My spirit calmed.

          It’s the only thing that matters in the end.

          God knows.

          He’s the only One who matters in the end.

          He’ll be the Judge that matters most for President Trump, media, you and me in the end.

          In the meantime before the end of time, it’s still true.

          Honesty is the best policy.

          Yes or no or I don’t know or…

          Truth…or consequences.


Blessings and Love!


Salt! Shine! Leavenate!

Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!




Friday, January 13, 2017

More Than A Game

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)


PEDs on Display in Boylan Win Over Bucs
(Bob Kopp, BDR Sports Correspondent)

It's the elephant in the room - uh, I mean on the court or field or diamond - whenever a public school plays a parochial school for NIC-10 seedings, titles, regards, recognitions, rewards, and all of the rest.

Indisputably, nobody wants to talk about it, parochial schools deny it, educators ignore it, and the IHSA rationalizes it as public school players, coaches, parents, and fans grin and bear it while their counterparts pretend their competitive excellence is not fueled by the use of Performance Enhancing Demographics.

Simply, parochial schools competing in athletic conferences with public schools don't play by the same rules.

They are not bound by geographical districting and everybody knows they cherry-pick, recruit, enable, and celebrate PEDs.

They don't play by the same rules of eligibility.

It makes Russian hacking look sophomoric.

People who deny this reality think Michelle Obama and Donald Trump will divorce their spouses so I can preside at their nuptial on January 21.

Now before those who want to pretend there's no elephant in the room burn up cyberspace with their letters to the editor to deny and rationalize their use of PEDs to move to the head of their classes, anyone who has ever read anything from me in the past - Not many! - knows I am an outspoken advocate for schools like Boylan who are dedicated to academic, spiritual, and athletic excellence; or as they say, "striving to be saints, scholars, and champions."

Praise God!

While public education has been the backbone of America in leveling the academic, athletic, vocational, and socioeconomic playing fields regardless of color, class, or culture, parochial education respects decisions to provide educational, social, spiritual, and athletic opportunities not tainted by the increasing insistence among public educators to distance themselves and those entrusted to them from America's spiritual roots.

Whenever I go to Boylan, I am overwhelmed and humbled by the civility of their fans, unashamed Christian confessionalism, and exercise of their constitutional right for collective prayer before every contest; begging the question why they can and public schools can't if they're in the same conferences playing for the same kudos.

Every once in a while, a public school will push the Titans out of the athletic spotlight; but that happens only slightly more frequently than the possibility of the aforementioned nuptial.

So it may be worth considering giving the trophies to Boylan and the other school in town vying to match their prowess before seasons begin; and then acknowledge the real champions who play by the same rules without the indisputable advantage of PEDs.

Now that that's not out of my system, Thursday's 50-33 Boylan win over the Bucs seemed more like a football game than night at the hoops; especially when checking the scoreboard.  15-3 Boylan at the end of the 1st.  21-6 Boylan at half.  33-15 Boylan going into the 4th.  And that's not to mention the laudably feisty play of Boylan captain and Air Force Academy recruit Zach Couper and Bucs captain and first-team-all-state QB Austin Revolinski who've been mixing it up against each other on the court and field most remarkably throughout their careers.

With their PEDs and daunting height advantage, the Bucs never posed a threat to their visitors. 

While Couper played as solidly dominating as ever in every aspect of the game (8 points as the court general), his usual offensive display wasn't needed in a balanced scoring attack led by 6'6" senior Ronan Jansen who led all scorers with 14 points. 

Senior Nate Horton led the Bucs with 9 points.

After four games (TBA) at Jefferson's Martin Luther King, Jr. Shootout on January 14-16, Belvidere returns to conference action when they host Auburn on January 20 at 7:00 p.m.


Blessings and Love!


Salt! Shine! Leavenate!
Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!




Monday, January 9, 2017

Devotional for Church Officers and Other Professed Followers of Jesus

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)


Devotional for Church Officers and Other Professed Followers of Jesus

First Meeting of 2017
(January 9)

          Having been around the horn a lot during my tenure in whatever it is that I do, I’ll confess my least favorite time of the year is from the first Sunday after Thanksgiving until the first Monday after Easter; and if you don’t know what I’m talking about, it means you’re not one of the reasons why those seasons aren’t the brightest pour moi.

          Let’s just say euphemistically that there’s too much drama around those times of year; and because I take my call more seriously than some others in the business, especially the John 14 part, my cup overflows around then.

          So I wasn’t thrilled to hear that no one signed up for the devotional for our first officers’ meeting of the year.

          Besides, nobody really pays too much attention to what I say or write or I’d really enjoy Christmas and Easter a lot more; and, moretheless, I like to listen to what God is saying through others and really like those devotionals that I’m not leading at meetings of officers, clergy, and others.

          Anyway, here’s my devotional text: “If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.  Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves…Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus” (see Philippians 2).

          There’s a lot in there; yet I think – and I may be wrong – the big thing that God is trying to impress upon people who say they’re praying and trying to love Jesus by loving like Jesus is that Christians, a word or description or profession not to be taken lightly or thrown on those who really don’t get it/Him, are supposed to model Someone better.


          Again, there’s a lot in there and you can wrap yourself around it in a Psalm 1 kinda way if you’re up for it; but some things came to my mind about modeling Someone better as I read that text…and they’re - I think yet may be wrong - especially true for people who do what I do or accept other offices in the church or say they’re followers of Jesus.

          1. Nobody but God knows everything; which means it’s better to admit it rather than act like a holier-than-thou/Thou-know-it-all and stay teachable.

          2. If you’ve got to pant and pout to make a point, you’re probably wrong.  Some nuns taught this to me: “If you’re right, you don’t have to argue.  If you’re wrong, you can’t afford to argue.”  People who like to argue or argue a lot betray their lack of confidence in what they’re arguing about.  If you don’t want people to pick-up-their-marbles-and-run-away-when-they-don’t-get-their-my-way-or-the-highway, then you better model Someone different for them.

          3. It’s wise to begin campaigns by saying, “I may be wrong but here’s what I think…”  You may be wrong!  Sorry to burst the bubble!  It’s taken a long time but I try to say this when making a point, “I may be wrong but here’s what I think; and if you can show me how I’m wrong by Jesus, the Bible, and common sense, I will confess my error, pray and try to repent, and ask your forgiveness.”

          4. Remember some wisdom from Eugene, “You don’t have to motivate Christians.  They’re already motivated.”  Or as Holtz revealed, “I never motivated players.  I recruited motivated players.”

          5. Jerry Kirk taught this lesson to me: “I don’t expect anything from people who don’t love Jesus; but I expect people who say they love Jesus to pray and work to prove it.”  Let me put it another way.  Believers expect nothing from posers.  Believers only expect more than less fidelity from authentics.

          6. Shepherds don’t follow sheep.  If you want the sheep to do something, lead the way!  Also, remember you’re not an officer or clergywoman/man to represent the opinions of people when you meet.  You’re called and ordained to honor God as God has revealed Himself in Jesus by the book.

          7. Picking up on that last one, don’t expect people to worship regularly, attend Sunday School, send children to Midweek and VBS and youth group and Confirmation Class, tithe, volunteer, forgive, reconcile, show up for stuff, and not act so miserably and cranky and contentious if you’re not modeling Someone better. It’s worth repeating.  Don’t expect people to model Someone better if you’re not!

          Finally, to drop a name, Lloyd Ogilvie, former pastor in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and Hollywood before becoming Chaplain of the United States of America Senate, told me how he cooperated with our Lord in the transforming of church officers and clergy into modeling Someone better.

          He began each meeting around the sacrament of Holy Communion.

          He discouraged people from opening their mouths at meetings if they had not been to worship and experienced the sacrament before meetings; recalling Dr. Macleod who often said something in seminary that I’m only beginning to grasp, “We get Jesus better during Holy Communion.”

          Lloyd said it’s hard for people to be jerks during meetings and anywhere else if they begin at the table with Jesus and each other and focus on Him so they can filter everything in their meetings and lives through Him for Him.

          O.K., that’s the devotional.


Blessings and Love!


Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!




Friday, January 6, 2017

Balance in Leadership

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)


Devotional Before Oath of Office


Officer Cameron Worley

Belvidere Police Department
Boone County Sheriff’s Department

City Hall
Belvidere, Illinois
January 6, 2017

          I was going to say what I’ve always said at these times - that I’ve been a Kopp all of my life - but nobody ever laughs; and I realize some folks just want me to get on with it and say a quick prayer so everybody can get going.

          Please don’t think that I’m singling you out; because that’s how most folks feel when I preach on Sundays.

          Well, I won’t take too long because I’ve also got things to do; but this is a special day for Cameron and we should savor it with him as we are reminded of our fraternity dedicated to the health and welfare of Belvidere and Boone County America and the special qualities required for our ministries of law enforcement and crime prevention.

          Today, I want to encourage Cameron and remind the rest of us about the emotional, intellectual, and spiritual balance required of “shepherds” like us who are charged by God through our oaths of office to protect citizens from the wolves ready to ravage them.

          Jesus explained the balance like this, “You are called to protect sheep from wolves; so be as wise as a serpent and as gentle as a dove.”

          To be “as wise as a serpent” is to recognize there are predators in our world and dedicate ourselves to prayer, training, vigilance, and teamwork to protect people from them.

          To be “as gentle as a dove” is to remember there are many more good people than bad people in our world and that the overwhelming majority of them are praying and rooting for us with thanks to God.

          I like how Martin Luther King, Jr. explained this balance: “We must combine the toughness of the serpent and the softness of the dove, a tough mind and a tender heart.”

          He went on, “The shape of the world today does not permit us the luxury of softmindedness…[but]…Toughmindedness without tenderheartedness is cold and detached…Jesus reminds us that the good life combines the toughness of the serpent and the tenderness of the dove.  To have serpentlike qualities devoid of dovelike qualities is to be passionless, mean, and selfish.  To have dovelike without serpentlike qualities is to be sentimental, anemic, and aimless.”

          Jesus says we must join Cameron and all of our sisters and brothers in law enforcement and crime prevention in being tough and tender; for one without the other makes us imbalanced.

          If you are one without the other, you are an imbalanced Kopp/cop with a K or C.

          Remember, there are wolves out there.

          Our job is to protect people from them and put them out of business.

          Remember, there are sheep out there who are praying and rooting for us to succeed/fulfill our call to law enforcement and crime prevention.

          Be tough.

          Be tender.

          Be balanced…and you’ll always tip the scales of justice for righteousness’ sake.

          Let us pray.

          Thank You, God, for the privilege of law enforcement and crime prevention as a sacred calling to honor You by protecting the health and welfare of citizens entrusted to our care.  As we thank You for Cameron and his particular call to this shared ministry and pray every encouragement for him, bless his partnership with our Mayor and Council, municipal employees, firefighters, police, Fire Chief, Police Chief, Sheriff, State’s Attorney, Judges, public servants, and citizenry dedicated to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as endowed by our Creator, guided by Holy Scripture, and ultimately redeemed by grace through faith in Jesus as we pray in His name.  Amen.


Blessings and Love!


Salt! Shine! Leavenate!
Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!





Sunday, January 1, 2017

January 1, 2017

Kopp Disclosure
(John 3:19-21)



    New year's resolutions.

    Here's one.

    Let's resolve to live our lives in such a way that the preacher won't have to lie at our funerals.

    I think of two notoriously naughty brothers.

    You know the kind.

    They transfer their pejorative pathologies to everyone because misery loves/embraces/enables...

    Well, one of 'em died and the survivor went to the preacher, "I am very wealthy.  If you agree to preside at my brother's funeral and say he was a saint, I will underwrite your church's budget for a decade."

    The preacher, notorious as well for telling the truth no matter who/what/where/when, agreed and opened the funeral with this prayer: "Lord, he was an evil man.  He abused his family.  He was selfish.  He did not share any of the wealth entrusted to him by You.  He did nothing good.  He was an evil man; but compared to his brother, he was a saint."

    Back to resolutions, Twain quipped, "Now is the accepted time to make your regular annual resolutions.  Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual."

    Or as my daddy had to remind me on too many occasions, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."

    Be that as it is in a Pauline kinda way - and if you don't know what that means, read Romans 7 - I think resolutions, with all apologies to Jesus in Matthew 5:37 which the fundamentalists in town get while I'm still trying to figure it/Him out, are the only, uh, Christian thing to do for women and men of faith who want to get, uh, better in their, uh, discipleship.

    But before I record my resolutions for 2017 so relatives and family on the corner of Lincoln and Main can hold me accountable in a why-don't-you-practice-what-you-preach kinda way, I recalled some resolutions from the past from folks who inspire mine.

    Tony Evans: "Let me make this bold statement to every local church.  The fuller of the Spirit you are, the fewer 'programs' you need.  Because no program on earth can match the filling from heaven.  Counseling would be cut short if more people who are being counseled were instead being filled."

    Rhonda Hughey: "If we aren't longing for Jesus, our ministry activities will be routine and hollow.  There is certainly no shortage of ideas, plans, methods, books, teachings, programs, and activities in the church.  What we are suffering from is a drought of desperation for God!  Desperation is the underlying fuel that ignites our hearts for unity, prayer, worship, and repentance."

    Chuck Legvold: "I'm going to learn to care less about what the 'saved' think and more about what the 'lost' need."

    Gary Beets: "If we meet and you forget me, you've missed nothing.  But if you meet Jesus and forget Him, you've lost everything."

    Chuck Colson: "Don't follow me!  Follow Jesus!"

    Specifically, pour moi, in 2017 to spark/provoke/compel some from you for Christ's sake:

    1. I'm going to read fewer books about the Bible and spend most of my study/devotional time reading the Bible.

    2. Because I'm going to live around here for the rest of my life and stay on the corner of Lincoln and Main until assassinated by an Islamofascistnutball savage or that girl/guy who's still mad at me for taking the church away from her/him and giving it back to Jesus or Grandpa Jacob's cancer genes kick in, I'm going to stop complaining about the pizza being awful compared to the slices of Northeastern Pennsylvania.

    3. I'm going to retreat into the privacy of my own mind and revel in pony rides when sitting with an irascible, irregular, or irreconcilable and remember as I wrote in a book nobody bought, "Trying to be rational with the irrational is illogical."

    4. With #3 as context, I'm not going to talk/write/weep or waste another minute on the PCUSA that is increasingly apostate under current management and spend my time praying/sowing for its return to Jesus by the book which means I will serve as called, not conspire with schismatics in renewed obedience to John 17, and network with anyone anywhere at anytime who convinces me that she/he/they really want to honor and follow Jesus by the book.  In other words, when in cultures hostile to Jesus like most mainliners and sideliners with their peculiarly and selfishly navel-gazing idolatries only coincidental to Christianity as incarnated in Jesus and prescribed in Holy Scripture, I will shut up when tempted to condemnation in obedience to John 3:17 while praying/trying to salt, shine, and leavenate.

    5. I will pray/try to follow Thumper's counsel: "If you can't say somethin' nice, don't say nothin' at all."

    6. I will surrender all wistfulnesses to Him as well as remember Picasso when I speak/write: "When I was 12, I could paint like Raphael.  It took until now to be able to paint like this."

    7. Existentially and metaphorically, I will spend my energy, emotions, and resources savoring Quorum and Camacho Bertha rather than higher ends that aren't really that much better.

    If you don't get #7, don't worry about it.

    My resolutions are only intended to fuel yours and provide ammo for the self-righteous and judgmental in my life and ministry.


Blessings and Love!


Salt! Shine! Leavenate!

Look up! Stand up! Speak up! Act up for Jesus!