Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Listen to God

When Kim and I were on staff with Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ), we talked with the college students about a personal relationship with God. It is intimate and dynamic.

But in reality, we were not sure how to experience such a relationship with the Living God on a daily basis. We studied the Word. We prayed. We tried to live according to the Kingdom principles.

They are good and profitable practices and the starting point of our walk with Jesus.

Then the question rose. How did Jesus experience His fellowship with the Father?

He knew Scriptures. He prayed frequently. He practiced and taught the Kingdom principles.

And more...His relationship with the Father was one of utter trust and unconditional love. He said,
"Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise." (John 5:19)

Jesus repeated the same idea that He was in close and constant contact with the Father in John 5:30; 8:28 and 14:10.

That is what we want. Don't you? To have an intimate and dynamic fellowship with the Father in such a way that you are regularly having a conversation with the Lord as with a friend or a family member. You can ask him not only about the major decisions of your life but also about dozens of choices you make every day. Granted, you may not need to ask the Lord what to wear in the morning. But then, why not? At least, once in a while?

Now, if we want the kind of fellowship Jesus enjoyed with the Father, we will need to listen to God more regularly. We are discovering that God speaks directly to our hearts far more often than we have come to expect.

This is where our new journey began several years ago, the pursuit of intimate and dynamic fellowship with God as exemplified by the Lord Jesus Himself. Join us as we learn and discover how deep and rich our walk with Christ can go.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas

I love the sense of innocence that surrounds Christmas. It is pure, intimate and holy.

Have you experienced it this year?

It is very fragile. If not handled with care, it is gone. And yet it is very persistent. You cannot push it away. It is always there during Christmas. I even felt it long before I learned the true meaning of Christmas. It wants to capture your heart and imagination.

Once you choose to give your moment to dwell in it, however, it becomes a window to a different world, It's not the wonderland of Santa and elves, but it is as if you were looking into the realm of the gods or the different world like Narnia - the world that is dangerous, beautiful, adventurous, romantic and epic. It feels real, far more real than our everyday living in that it feels that this is what life should be.

The wonder of Christmas is that it has brought our world and this realm together. These two are now superimposed on top of each other to become one reality.

The noise of shopping, parties, family gatherings, special events and above all, the complexities of all the relationships involved in all our activities often drown out the whisper that calls us to this quiet place where the veil between the two worlds is thin, where you will sense this powerful innocence that was once yours.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The 4/14 Window

The idea of the 4/14 Window is not our idea (probably you figured that much). It's a global initiative to reach the critical demographic group - children and youth between the ages of 4 and 14. They are open to the Gospel. In fact, they are open to almost anything that the world has to offer. Whoever they choose to follow today will determine the course of the world tomorrow. Check the 4/14 Window Movement website for more detail.

Download the higher quality version of this video HERE

Monday, December 5, 2011

Coffee! - Reflection III

I'm dreaming of a tall machiatohhhh! Yes, the coffee was amazing! Only 25 cents for a demitasse size and about a dollar for a tall. I tried to drink as much as I could, but alas, like the sunshine you only feel its effects when it's actually there. Kaldi's is their version of Starbucks-so if you're in Addis, and need the ambiance, head on over.

at Kaldi's

I noticed how there weren't any drive-through coffee places. But then, drinking coffee in Ethiopia is for relaxing with friends, not getting your daily dose of legal stimulant! Besides, driving requires both hands and full attention-your drink would be down your front.
My first taste of the famed machiatto was at Sami Grill. We ran into some friends of Tenaye and Solomon, and they were having coffee. I asked Solomon quietly what the friend was drinking and Solomon asked him if I could have a taste!! I was so embarrassed! Asking a stranger (at least to me) for a drink of his coffee! Our American friend and host told us later that it's common for friends to share freely. I ordered one of my own. :)