FLAME Set Lists

Monday

  • Forever
  • Sing To the King
  • Come Thou Fount, Come Thou King
  • Your Great Light

Tuesday

  • Everlasting God
  • Your Grace Is Enough
  • The Wonderful Cross
  • Offering

Wednesday

  • Sing, Sing, Sing
  • All Creatures of Our God and King
  • Revelation Song
  • I Will Follow

Wednesday Communion

  • Mighty to Save
  • Glorious Day (Living He Loved Me)
  • The Great I Am
  • How He Loves

Thursday

  • Not To Us
  • Blessed Be Your Name
  • The Saving One
  • Amazing Grace (My Chains Are Gone)

Friday

  • Awesome Is the Lord Most High
  • Hosanna
  • Your Love O Lord
  • Your Great Light

Running In Indiana

This past week I traveled to Indiana to lead worship at FLAME.  It has been rare for me at this point to run when I go there.  I knew that the afternoon would probably be the best time to run, so I did that on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.  It was different running in Indiana, because there are no hills to speak of.  Some would say that it would be great to run without hills.  You would think that, but while it is difficult to run up hills, (and it is) there’s always the nice down hill part of hills.  Running down hill gives you a break. That was the first observation.

The second was on Monday the wind was blowing 30 mph.  I had never run in winds like that.  The wind was blowing out of the south and in Indiana almost every road goes either east/west or north/south.  When I was running east/west, the wind nearly blew me off the road.  While running south, it slowed me down big time and didn’t feel like running with the wind had any effect.

The third observation was not as running related, but related to the courteousness of the drivers in Indiana.  Here in Virginia, drivers almost gun for runners running along the road.  On the backroads of Indiana the drivers would pull clear into the opposing lane of traffic if there wasn’t any traffic coming the other way.  If there was, they would stop and let me have the shoulder.  It really was interesting to see how that worked, compared to being here.

It is good to be back home.  I ran today back in the park and in familiar territory.

Pressing On!

St. Patrick

Who Was St. Patrick? (Click to go to original article)

St. Patrick is one of Christianity’s most widely known figures. However, for all his celebrity, his life remains somewhat of a mystery to many. The myths associated with St. Patrick’s Day blind us to the reality of God’s work in the man.

Taken Prisoner By Irish Raiders

Patrick’s story reads like an Indiana Jones-type adventure. We know that Patrick was born in Britain around 390 A.D. to wealthy parents. He’s believed to have died on March 17, around 461 A.D. His father was a Christian and served as a deacon.

At age 16, in 405 A.D., a group of Irish raiders who were attacking his family’s estate, took Patrick prisoner. They transported him to Ireland where he spent six years in captivity.

Many believe he was taken to live in Mount Slemish in County Antrim, while others surmise that he was held in County Mayo near Killala. During this time, he worked as a shepherd, outdoors and away from people. It was at this time that he became a devout Christian, embracing the Christian faith of his upbringing, something that had mattered little to him beforehand.

In his own words, Patrick explained:

“And there the Lord opened the sense of my unbelief that I might at last remember my sins and be converted with all my heart to the Lord my God, who had regard for my abjection, and mercy on my youth and ignorance, and watched over me before I knew Him, and before I was able to distinguish between good and evil, and guarded me, and comforted me as would a father his son” (The Confession of St. Patrick).

This was also the time that Patrick first began to dream of converting the Irish people to Christianity.

Escape and Ministry

After more than six years as a prisoner, Patrick finally escaped from Ireland and made his way back to his home in Britain. But, in time, he sensed God’s call to return to Ireland in order to share the good news of Christ. Patrick then began his spiritual training, a course of study that lasted more than fifteen years.

After his ordination, he was sent to Ireland where he found unprecedented success in his evangelistic endeavors. His experience of Irish language and culture during his years as a slave enabled Patrick to communicate the Christian gospel with unusual effectiveness.

Although there may have been a small number of Christians on the island when Patrick arrived, most Irish practiced a nature-based religion. Patrick was able to show how Christ was the one true Son of God.

Tradition holds that Patrick lived into his seventies and died on March 17 461 A.D. In approximately three decades of evangelistic work, he led thousands of Irish to Christ and was responsible for Ireland becoming one of the most Christian nations in Europe. For this reason he is called “the apostle of the Irish.”

For more, visit http://www.rpmministries.org/2012/03/who-was-st-patrick/

You Must Look Up to Live

The Fourth Sunday In Lent
March 18, 2012

Numbers 21:4-9  • Psalm 107:1-3, 17-22  • Ephesians 2:1-10  • John 3:14-21

The children of Israel were traveling through the wildness. God had rescued them from slavery in Egypt. At one time Moses sent ten spies into the promise land to see what they thought about taking over the land that God promised them.  All but two told the people how impossible it would be to enter the land. God decided to punish the children of Israel and made them wander in the wilderness for forty years. He told them that because of their disobedience that they would stay in the wilderness for forty years.  Throughout the wandering, there were times when the children of Israel would complain about how God was not taking care of them.

In Numbers 21, we see this happen again.  4 Then the people of Israel set out from Mount Hor, taking the road to the Red Sea[to go around the land of Edom. But the people grew impatient with the long journey, 5 and they began to speak against God and Moses. “Why have you brought us out of Egypt to die here in the wilderness?” they complained. “There is nothing to eat here and nothing to drink. And we hate this horrible manna!” 6 So the LORD sent poisonous snakes among the people, and many were bitten and died. 7Then the people came to Moses and cried out, “We have sinned by speaking against the LORD and against you. Pray that the LORD will take away the snakes.” So Moses prayed for the people.8 Then the LORD told him, “Make a replica of a poisonous snake and attach it to a pole. All who are bitten will live if they simply look at it!” 9 So Moses made a snake out of bronze and attached it to a pole. Then anyone who was bitten by a snake could look at the bronze snake and be healed.

The Children of Israel were complaining about having to eat manna all the time. Once again they wanted to go back to Egypt and thought it would be better to be slaves again. The children of Israel had everything they needed – even their clothing and shoes never wore out. They had the presence of God in fire and a cloud where ever they went.  God would get upset when they complained and on this particular occasion he sent poisonous snakes to teach them a lesson. There are some people who would like point out how mean God is for doing this to people who he said “he loves and this are his children.”  In our human world, a father who loves his children will discipline them with love to make them the adults he knows they can be. When God hears his children cry for help, like a good father he reached out and made a way to save them.  It was a bronze. All they had to do is to look up to the snake and they would be healed.

Before anyone starts judging the children of Israel, let them take a look in the mirror at yourself.  There are times that I have complained to God even when he was taking care of me. As human, we easily get upset when we do not get our way. It is part of our sinful nature to act this way. Even though God cannot have anything to do with sin, he has made way to save us from our sins. The bronze snake was a picture of Christ on the cross. The snake gave only a short term cure for those who looked upon the snake because all those people who looked at the snake died eventually.  In the Gospel of John we read14 And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.

But when we look as sinners look at the cross and believe in Christ we can have eternal life.

16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.  17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

Too many times there are people who think that God just wants to judge us and punish us. God is a loving father who wants everyone to have eternal life with him. God sent his son to die for us. How many would give up our son’s life to save someone else. All we have to do is just to look upon on the cross for eternal life.

The Bible Uncensored

From Children’s Ministry Magazine

From the account of Cain murdering Abel, to David committing adultery with Bathsheba, to the woman at the well’s five husbands, to the beheading of John the Baptist, the Bible is fraught with some gruesome and disturbing accounts that expose humankind’s sinful nature. Whether it’s dodging narratives of brutal murder, rape, and incest or navigating Jesus’ crucifixion on the cross, children’s ministers face a unique challenge when it comes to knowing how to teach kids the tougher parts of the Bible. How do we prayerfully cover all Bible stories for all ages? It’s no simple task-nor one to be taken lightly.

For some, the idea of quietly censoring the Bible has its appeal. And it’s true: To a degree, simply leaving out the tough stories of the Bible would be easier. But-and this is a big “but”-children’s ministers and experts all agree that omitting certain accounts of the Bible is a flawed approach that can result in children developing a flawed faith.

So what’s the best approach to handling the racier events of the Bible? Read on to find out.

  1. Unpack the Reality of Sin
  2. Use Age-Appropriate Discretion
  3. Build a Simple Foundation 
  4. Don’t Turn Truth Into a Fairy Tale
  5. Build on Basics
For details on each of these steps, click here

• • •
When we look at the amazing array of events in the Bible, it’s all too easy to lean toward censoring the ones that make us uncomfortable. Rather than censoring or omitting, change your frame of reference. Everything in the Bible is there for a reason; it’s up to us to seek out the ways to help kids find the meaning God has for them in his words. Rather than censor it, we can simplify concepts and de-select details so they don’t become a distraction to the understanding kids can get from the basic story. Learn to release and hold back just the right amount for
the kids you minister to.

“Should we censor the Bible?” ponders Brolsma. “Of course not. But we should use wisdom as we teach God’s Word, gleaning applicable and meaningful truths from every portion of Scripture. It means we step out in faith, sharing God’s Word honestly and simply in ways that today’s kids can best understand.”

I Told God I Was Angry

I Told God I was Angry by Jessica Shaver

I told God I was Angry

I thought He’d be surprise.

I thought I’d kept hostilely

Quite cleverly disguised.

 

I told the Lord I hate Him;

I told Him that I hurt.

I told Him that He isn’t fair,

He’s treated me like dirt.

I told God I was angry,

Bet I’m the one surprised

“What I’ve known all along,” He said,

“You’ve finally realized.

“At last you have admitted

What’s really your heart:

Dishonesty, not anger,

Was keeping us apart

 

Even when you hate Me,

I don’t stop loving you.

Before you can receive that love,

You must confess what’s true.

“In telling me the anger

You genuinely feel,

It lose power over you

Permitting you to heal”

 

I told God I was sorry,

And He’s forgiven me.

The truth that I was angry

Had finally set me free.