Friday, June 25, 2010

God Loves The Freaks

Okay, a brief break from my own tale to share someone else's.  For full disclosure, Steve Weese is a good friend of mine that I met through the ministry of Fans For Christ (which he founded).  He has also written a great book, God Loves The Freaks, which I highly recommend to Christians and non-Christians alike.  To go along with it he recently made a video that I think is important for everyone to watch.  And for more information, check out the website that accompanies the book.

Watch God Loves the Freaks in Faith & Lifestyle  |  View More Free Videos Online at

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Remembering God....Or Not

So my journey through The Love Dare with God continues, despite less frequent blog entries.  I have been following the book every day, and as before am finding some challenges easier than others.  Giving up one of my own interests to spend time with God?  Easy...I spend a little less time on the computer and trade that time for prayer and reading the Bible.  Trusting Christ for my salvation (the latest Dare)?  Well, it's easy but I did that twelve years ago. Showing honor and respect above the normal routine?  A little harder.

But my real challenge has been remembering God throughout the day.  When I did the Dares with my wife I would see her physically for hours each day and talk to her throughout the day.  That physical and audible presence was hard to ignore.  Though God should be even more prominent, His presence is more spiritual and less obvious, making it easier to forget.

Wow. Forgetting God.  That sounds pretty harsh.  I mean, I pray and talk to Him throughout the day, but it's in shorter periods of time.  As much as I hate to admit it, I can get caught up in my own daily chores and routines and put God aside.  That's the worst thing we can do and the wrong way to order our lives.  But it's apparently easy.

But that's the reason for my 40 day journey.  I'm becoming more aware of my relationship with Him and how I fail in that.  Hopefully that will lead to better changes and a stronger bond.  We have to recognize our shortcomings before we can overcome them.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Loving God

Though I haven't posted on this blog for a while, I have continued to work on my Love Dare with God.  Family vacation and business travels have prevented me from blogging, but I have been trying to follow God and become closer to him.  Here's a summary of the last week or so of challenges.

One of the tasks was to come up with the good things about God.  That was easy, and I quickly listed loving, patient, powerful, Grace, caring always there, and forgiving.  The next task was to write down the negative things about God.  How do you do that if he's perfect and good?  So I thought of the things related to God that bother me.  He is too mysterious, he doesn't tell me His plans, and He sometimes doesn't seem to communicate clearly.  Really, though, these are all problems with my understanding of God and my own patience, not characteristics of God Himself.  The second list was thrown away as a representation of letting go of the things I don't like.

The next several days involved me doing something for God with enthusiasm, doing something out of the ordinary that proves my love for Him, meet His need, giving in on an area of disagreement with Him, and coming up with rules for when we fight.  As with many parts of this self-induced challenge, these have been difficult to do.  It is hard to find things to do for God, or at least I've not been very successful in discovering them.  I also do believe that any time I argue with God, I'm the one who loses.  After all, how can I be right and God be wrong?  I have ended up trying to pray more, talk to Him more, and thank Him more.  I think it's also been difficult since I've traveled a lot over the last two weeks and haven't been in areas that I know and can find things to do.  Maybe that's just an excuse, but I know God knows my heart and knows that I'm sincerely trying.

It's now been 13 days.  Do I feel closer to God?  Yes.  But I'm not even half-way through this journey.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Facing Our Failures

Today's Love Dare challenge required me to ask God to show me three problems or failings I have and then listen to Him without judgment.  It didn't take long for Him to point out to me my temper, depressive tendencies, and really more than three things.  We are supposed to confess our sins to God, but as Christians we should also know that He can tell what they are before we do them.  Expressing this to Him is more about recognizing it in ourselves.  It's also different when we ask God to specifically make a list of our problems and listen to what comes into our hearts.

I am very, very grateful that announcing my sins isn't the end of the story.  Though God is holy and righteous, He is also forgiving and has designed a way to have those sins removed.  Christ's sacrifice means that even if we are aware of our sins, we don't have to live with them.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Offering Some Help

It's been an interesting couple of days for the Love Dare.  Yesterday I was supposed to buy something special and unexpected.  How do you buy something for God? So I thought that I would give money to a cause or somehow help out someone in need as God led me.  However, I was at the zoo with my family all day and then at my father's in the evening, so I never saw an opportunity present itself.  I'm not giving up on that one yet, and will continue to look for some way to fulfill this challenge.

Today's task was to call up God at some point during the day and ask Him if I could do anything to help him.  For spouses the intent is to give of ourselves and not expect the spouse to always be the one to do something.  In this case I "called" God (prayed) a few times today to let Him know that I was thinking about Him, and then asked if there was anything He needed me to do for Him.

Me do something for God?  Well, He's God, so if he can't do it what chance to I have?  But the point isn't for me to do something that He's incapable of doing, it's to offer to do something in the first place.  It's putting His needs before my own.  It's looking to make sure His goals are reached before my own personal ones.  And it really is the thought that counts.  I can't say that God directed me to do anything in particular, which is okay since the challenge was to offer help as needed.

So where am I now that I've been at this for four days?  Well, I'm finding that taking this particular challenge is tricky when directed at an incorporeal being.  But it's making me more aware of Him than I have been in a long time, and that's not a bad thing.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

How Do I Act Kind To God?

Day 2 of the Love Dare challenge....

Today in addition to not saying anything negative I was supposed to do at least one kind act.  How do we do that towards God?  It was especially hard for me since my family spent most of the day driving across several states to visit my father for a vacation.  I tried to think of ways that I could be kind to God or His someone who seemed to need help, give a kind word to someone in need of support, help an injured wild animal, etc.  Nothing seemed to present itself.  Now the day's not completely over as I write this, but I think that I'm nearing the end of my opportunities as the rest of the evening is going to spent with my wife, children, and father.  How can I do an act of kindness to Him in that setting?

Maybe I can respect my wife more since He gave her to me.  Similarly with my children, since they are gifts from God, I can be a little more lenient towards their typical rowdiness.  Since God instructs us to honor and respect our parents, I can give my father a little more leeway.  In each of these instances I am following God's commands and wishes.  Since I can't interact with Him in person, I have to do so through intermediaries, such as His creation.

I know that God forgives any of my failings in this endeavor and knows the intent of my heart.  I pray that He will help me in this journey.