Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Gary Thomas, in his book Authentic Faith, tells the following story:
When we visited Knott's Berry Farm, an amusement park with a frontier theme, there were virtually no lines, and we went easily from major attraction to major attraction, in many cases walking right on. If the kids really enjoyed the ride, they stayed on and rode again. 
My then six-year-old daughter Kelsey was having the time of her life. After about three hours, however, I noticed something curious. She jumped off some little cars; she had ridden a train, a log ride, a Ferris wheel, a flying school bus- you name it. Her words, however, revealed a spirit that was getting more hungry, not less: "What's next?" she asked, with a slightly desperate edge to her voice.
That's when I realized there's never quite enough excitement to quiet the human heart. We'll never have as much excitement as we want. This has been true from the beginning of time. (Gary Thomas, Authentic Faith, p.175)

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Our prayer focus this week at Generations is for the lost. We are praying for the unreached, the nations, this nation, our own city and for those in our spheres of influence who do not know that what makes for peace (Luke 19:42). We are asking God to give us a deeper love for His lost sons and daughters and for Him to give us persistence in praying for them and boldness to bear witness to the truth of the gospel. Here is another prayer from the treasure trove that is The Valley of Vision. This is a prayer for God's Cause, again adjusting language for readability:

            SOVEREIGN GOD,
            Your cause, not my own, engages my heart,
                   and I appeal to you with greatest freedom
                   to set up your kingdom in every place where Satan reigns;
            Glorify yourself and I shall rejoice,
                   for to bring honor to your name is my sole desire.
            I adore you that you are God,
                   and long that others should know it, feel it,
                          and rejoice in it.
            O that all men might love and praise you,
                   that you might have all glory from the intelligent world!
            Let sinners be brought to you for your dear name!
            To the eye of reason everything respecting the conversion of others
                   is as dark as midnight,
            But you can accomplish great things;
                   the cause is yours,
                   and it is your glory that men should be saved.
            Lord, use me as you will;
                   do with me what you will;
                   but, O, promote your cause,
                   let your kingdom come,
                   let your blessed interest be advanced in this world!
            O do you bring in great numbers to Jesus!
                          let me see that glorious day,
                               and give me grasp for multitudes of souls;
                          let me be willing to die to that end;
                               and while I live let me labour for you
                                    to the utmost of my strength
                                    spending time profitably in this work,
                                    both in health and in weakness.
            It is thy cause and kingdom I long for, not my own.

            O, God, answer my request! (The Valley of Vision, God's Cause, p.177)      

Friday, November 8, 2013


We are preaching through a series on prayer at Generations right now, but more importantly we are in a season of prayer as a church. My own personal prayer life has been enriched by the collection of Puritan prayers compiled in the book, The Valley of Vision. I wanted to begin offering some of these prayers for the edification of our church family and as a help to them in their personal prayer and communion with God. This prayer, in the book is titled, A Convert's First Prayer, but it is actually a wonderful prayer worth offering at any time in one's journey with Christ. It's really more of a prayer that God's grace would continually grip our hearts and that His great love for us in Christ would increasingly shape us. I have altered the original language, replacing the "thee's and thou's" for the sake of readability... This is my prayer today and I hope you'll make it yours:

I could never have sought my happiness in your love,
            unless you first loved me.
Your Spirit has encouraged me by grace to seek you,
            has made known to me your reconciliation in Jesus,
            has taught me to believe it,
            has helped me to take you for my God and portion.