Sometimes Christians are the worst people

4 09 2009

I have had this pastor on my mind for a few days. After hearing parts of a sermon he gave  “Why I hate Barack Obama” Mark Arum of WSB 750 replayed some of it this past weekend. It has deeply upset me, that someone who calls themselves a believer can stand upinfront of others he is trying to lead to a relationship with Christ and say that he prays at night that “Barack Obama would die and go to hell.”

Regardless of Obama’s poicies or even live choices he has made, nothing he has done has warranted this prayer from this man. Even if one would say he was evil (which i don’t) the bible would say pray for your enemies, pray for everyone’s salvation. Love one another, your neighbor etc. I am deeply troubled by this man preaching this about anyone, let alone our president. Though i an Obama supporter politically, i do pray God would lead him in leading our country. For God asks us to pray for our leaders.

So i pray now for Stephen L. Anderson to realize the true word of the bible and understand the love and grace that is poured out through our relationship with God. I pray that God can change him so he could be someone who could lead people to God not down the “religious” path that is hurtful and excluding. The “religious” path that so many people are mistaking God for, and not the church.

I just hope what this pastor has talked about hasn’t turned anyone away from the grace of Christ. Because Stephen Anderson isn’t a good representation of the body of believers.

Here is the link to the sermon i am referring to Click Here here is the link to the church he pastors Click Here.

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Mr. Stanley talking about the next President.

10 09 2008

Well these next 50+ days we are going to elect a new president. It is a wonderful expierence, and this election has truely been one to make the history books. I wrote a month or so ago about a series my church did called “letters to the next president” and i posted the letter i would like the next president to read. I have included in this post a video from my pastor talking that. So regardless what you stand for or who you want in the white house. Check this site out! Write a letter you cannot create something you want or something different without talking about it and letting it be known.





Sometimes I am embarassed to Be a Christian!

28 08 2008

So I have been looking around for a good topic to blog about for the past several days. Outside of the political world I haven’t had much to talk about. For some reason I don’t want to write a lot of political stuff. So I was just browsing some of the news sites I read from time to time. I came across a new item that is coming out soon called (are you ready for this) “Guitar Praise.” When I read this I thought it was a joke. Nope it isn’t a joke at all it is real. Guitar Hero with praise music for $100, hey I can plug into your trendy Mac as well.

Yes that is a knock off of Guitar Hero for us Christians. I mean what is more arrogant than the freakin Christian marketers just ripping off stuff, not making it new in anyway except adding some stupid Christian music. I know I know some of the music is good, but for the most part the corporate Christian music is worse than the Top 40 stations on the mainstream. Why do we feel we need to not be original, not think for ourselves to come up with good ideas. Not use a successful idea from someone else steal it and add the word God, Jesus, Church, or Praise to make it “Christian.” I wouldn’t be surprised if the Devil himself (Family Christian Stores) had a hand in creating this crap.

I mean we have so many problems as believers to not be thought of as arrogant, selective, judgmental, mean bastards by the world. Now we create this crap along with the “Christian” mints, “Christian” pot holders, “Christian” crack rock, and more. Just because you put a cross on something doesn’t make it “anointed” by God. It definitely doesn’t make it cool or awesome. Example Bible Man, Bible Man, Bible Man! These things makes us look like elitists, I know you should have an alternative to the violent themes of the “superheroes” on TV. You know what why not come up with something for your child, and not rely on the poor marketing of cheap toys with crosses on them so your child can be ridiculed by his peers. Wait you probably home school the poor child.

Look I don’t want you to think I don’t like things that are for the Lord, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Those things don’t try to look like, sound like, or pretend to be the “secular” thing.
Example, I like Todd Field’s music, now he doesn’t take non-Christian songs and changer the lyrics to make himself more appealing. No he writes what he wants or is lead to. That’s why I like him. Veggie Tales, I know it is for kids, but it was very original and it was well written. They both Todd Field’s and Veggie Tales are “Christian” things, but they are original and real. Not reformed like the potato head Christian products that just slap a cross on an item and double the price to sell in the “Christian” store. I mean you are loved more by God for shopping at the “Christian” it’s like showing up at church twice on Sundays. (though the crappy revelation movies are quite a riot, I mean if you absolutely nothing to do)

I have heard all the objections to what I have said. I know I might have offended you. I know. It’s just Jesus didn’t come to earth and hang out at the Jehovah Java all day with his Christian friends and go shopping at the LifeWay Christian Store for his music. No he was with the hookers, murderers, tax collectors, liars, adulterers, and more. In fact the people he had the worst taste in his mouth for was the people outside the temple like in John 2:12-25. So why do we feel the need to make ourselves separate from others with our trendy little “Christian” only stuff. When if we were original it would minister to people.





My Letter to the Next President!

5 08 2008

Recently my church did a series called “Letters to the Next President” the pastor (Andy Stanley) talked about what the bible would say to the next leader of our country. He ended up forming three letters from different stories about leaders in the bible and how they led in hard or difficult times. North Point also created a website for the general public to write their own letters to the next president. Not a specific person but to the one who ends up getting elected. Well I almost wrote one a few different times but for one reason or another I decided to not. Well this afternoon I did write one and I have put it below. I encourage you to write a letter. I mean he probably isn’t going to read but you never know. You don’t know how maybe God could inspire you and it could speak to the write person even if it isn’t the next president.

Dear Mr. President,

I know I have said I know what I would do that would fix the situation and I know how I would act as president. Even when I was a high school kid I wanted to actually have your job. After growing up I now realize I wouldn’t get the votes, but I would still like the job if I had the opportunity. Moving on I would like to say I know that what I see as an American watching news, reading blogs, and forming my own opinions that I do not know what you know just from the very nature of your position. So I know I would say I would do things a certain way, I pray that you can seek counsel from God and your staff to do what is right not just what makes you popular. Now I know Andy Stanley said that and if you were going to read these letters his would be the first ones and you wouldn’t make it to this one. I also highly doubt that you will make the mature correct decision for the people. I just pray that you will. Now I know you will get into office with the first 90 days of your campaign planned out and it will be what rallied you in, in the end. You will then probably take office realize what you wanted to accomplish will not be as easy to do and you will “distract” us from the goal you laid out. I already am, ok with that. I am bouncing off the letter Chuck Colson of the Nixon administration said and ask you to start your day with a devotional and scripture. I totally agree with him, have your quiet time with the creator before coming out and ruling the “free world.” Though I sort of envy your job, I do not envy your time of taking office. There is a lot of things changing in this nation and you are going to be in one of the strangest times of office.

So I pray that you do seek God, and I pray that you are humble enough to REALLY put the needs of the American people before yours.

Sincerely,

Joanthan Hoover
Amercian Citizen





Beheaded Canada bus man

1 08 2008

I was reading a story this morning about a man who killed a young man on a bus. Actually removing his head, walking to the front of the bus and presenting it to the passengers. Who were then frightened. So I was interested in his story, it is sad the young man’s life was so tragically ended this way by a man he didn’t know and for no apparent reason. The story said that the murderer was emotionless and cold when he went to the front of the bus, as in he wasn’t mad, crazy, or any of the normal emotions you would think that would warrant a man do stab someone 16 times and cut off their head. It is a horrible story and the more you think about being present the more you would realize the crippling fear you would experience when that happened. While all the news people are talking about security and all that in the bus travel industry.

I am pondering what snapped in a persons mind like that?

How do something like that happen without a fit of rage?

How does human life then become so impersonal that you could snuff it out like that with as much reactions tying your shoes?

I bet a lot of people wonder why would God allow someone to do such a thing?

Or Why that kid, who was said to be funny and “bubbly?”

You would hear in church that things happen for a reason and God is weaving a tapestry and we cannot see the ultimate picture. That pain and suffering is a “megaphone of the cross” to steal Louie’s words. I am not going to answer that cause there are far more intelligent communicators who can explain that better than I can.

What I want to discuss, is how does a man or woman snap like that? Personally I notice when I do something difficult or tough the first few times it is hard. Then it gets easier! Had this man done this before? Another thought I have is God says he loves everyone, Does he really love this man?

The answer is yes, and this man still can be forgiven by the blood of the savior. He is one of the ones the church leaves out to dry, I dunno if it is cause some people don’t care for them to be loved since they showed no mercy or compassion for someone to cut off their head.

But we look at television and see a man named Jack Bauer cut off a man’s head to help solve the situation. Jack did this with no remorse or visible pain. Now I know it is television and it was the good guy doing something to bring down the bad guy. But on the show we would forget and even overlook this action by Jack Bauer. I know you are thinking, yeah this is a silly comparison. My point is that murder is murder and it is wrong. But like murder there are other things that are wrong and doesn’t make a person bad. We all have done things we wouldn’t want others to know about and would be shamed if they did. But actions don’t make our whole selves bad. I am not condoning or saying that the murderer is a good man I do not know him.

What I am saying is that this country has this “damn them to hell” attitude with people who commit crimes.

We have this “oh, I cannot believe they did that!” When you have thought about the same action! We say, “Eye for an eye, they killed a little boy they should be put to death.” Then they say they believe the bible and love Jesus. Not doubting that they love Jesus but, Jesus was the largest advocate for love, grace, mercy, and compassion EVER! He was with murders, prostitutes, thieves, and he loved them. He didn’t damn them to eternal suffering. He didn’t stone them for being a whore, even when he could have. He showed them love and compassion. Now the bible does say that there are consequences to wrong doing. (Gal 5)

How can we as a people and body of Christ sentence someone to death for their crimes we caught them doing?

How can the person who says they were appointed by God to lead the nation, send more people to death than any other leader?

I am not saying they should be set free, or they should work with our children of course not. What I am saying is that even the worst of the worst (Paul) can be changed in an instant by God. Even the man going out to slaughter a whole group of people for believing something can be stopped changed and go on to lead that group.

So let’s have some mercy let’s show people, “hey even though you messed up you are still lovable.”Cause Jesus did and God calls us to. I know you will say, “can you love a killer?” I want to answer yes, but the truth is through the Holy Spirit I know I can. Just because you have written someone or something off cause you think there is no hope. DON’T put God in the box! For He CAN change that man’s heart. And God may want to use you as the segway into his spirit.

So let’s pray for the persecuted and the persecutor that they both find their way to the Lord!

-hoov





S#&$ man, this is awesome!

25 07 2008

Shit, for a lot of people this isn’t a word they give a “shit about. For me growing up in the church they always equated cursing with drug-use, pre-martial sex, smoking, and drinking. As a youth these things that were pressed upon me to abstain from because it makes your relationship with God not so good. Now as an adult, I quite often use that word. I look back on my youth and realize it was a good thing for the young people to be given rules and guidelines not as legalism or earning salvation. But more helping you, helping you keep margin at a younger age so that you will can try to stay away from things that can really hurt your life physically, mentally, and spiritually. I bring this up cause I have been hearting a lot from the past couple weeks about Christians and their mouths.
I think it is rather comical that most of society curses all the time with no real moral guilt or anything unless they are in front of an old lady, priest or you know what I mean. As a whole no one cares. The ones who do are the religious ones. The ones who say it is a terrible thing to say these things. Personally, I haven’t read in the bible or had a prophetic word spoken to me about the specific words I was using in my language. My take on this, I encourage you to read and find out for your self is not based from the bible directly (as I haven’t ever read anything about cursing or not cursing.) is that it is the intent of the words being said rather than the specific words at all.

Example 1. Let’s pretend someone said this to you, “Your are an ugly human being, your life makes me sad!”
‘That was very hurtful and it would make you feel terrible to hear that some anyone weather you knew them or cared about them or not.

Example 2 Here is something using a curse word, “Hey did you see Dark Knight, man it was the shit?”

Example 3 and another one “Hey man, this band fuckin rocks!”
Now on television both example 2 & 3 would have been bleeped out and edited. But the first sentence would be fine.

Moving on I understand that the “curse words” of our society do accentuate things and give them more power for the good or the bad. What I am saying in short is that; is it is NOT hypocritical for a believer to use any word in a positive manner. PERIOD they are words, the English language wasn’t invented till long long after Jesus and the bible.
Even still I hear from church leaders and such about how some other leaders said this curse word or that one. I think it is ridiculous, we should worry about the negative words being about the person who was using said curse word.

Jesus called us to love God with all our heart, mind and soul. As well as to love our neighbor as our self. I understand leading by example and the others argument about the limited vocabulary of the people who curse a lot. But sometimes you want to say what you want to say. Intent not that the word is what does the damage to someone else. It is the intent of your mouth that can start a forest fire not the word said.

So let me know what you think I mean I could be wrong, and I could be misguided.

-hoov





Don’t be fooled you cannot mock the justice of God!

1 07 2008

I was reading Gal. 6 for my small group this week and the first part of that chapter was striking to me Gal. 6:1-10. The chapter entitled “We Harvest What We Plant,” I know this is an age old adage. You reap what you sow. But how many of us actually don’t believe that. I mean most of us don’t believe that with our “doings.” We recognize it in others and understand the principle, but we fail to see our own issues, and quickly proclaim the issues of others. Like it says in Matthew 7:3.

What I love about what Paul was telling the church in Greece (where Galatia was) was keep planting, keep doing for others. I was reading a commentary this is what it had to say about it. “When we sow acts of love, we reap a harvest of love in return. When we give generously and sacrificially to the needs of others, we reap a harvest of gratitude as those needs are met. When we sow the seed of God’s Word in needy lives, we experience the joy of response. But we must remember that reaping a harvest almost never happens on the same day as sowing the seed. We may not even see a harvest in this life from what we have sown. Nevertheless, we must never give up, because we know that at the proper time our Master will return and reward those who have been faithful servants.”(www.biblegateway.com)

I don’t know about you but I have great satisfaction in knowing that doing things for others not just for my own end is going to be used weather you see it or not. Reminds me of a principle I heard, “leverage what is yours for something bigger than you so that you can grow the number in heaven.” It was a monumental thought to me that the things, not just money I have, but stuff I can leverage for others to allow the “good news” to do it’s thing.

I know this entry was a little more preachy this time. But this is so important. Not just the principle of reaping what you sow. But the message of freedom, and grace through Christ. Paul talks a lot in Galatians about living free from the law, but brought into the law of love. It hurts me when I see other churches pastors and believers squabbling about the right and wrong with different things in our theology. A lot of us worry about the amount of curse words use by someone, or the number of times someone has done something we deem as wrong. When that doesn’t matter. We need to leverage our lives and our belongings to come together as believers and unite in showing God’s love to EVERYONE. When I say everyone I mean, black, white, gay, straight, murders, molesters, homeless, wealthy, arrogant and humble. We are all important to God and we ALL are loved by Him unconditionally, so we ALL can receive his GRACE. Never mind what who has sown they will reap what is theirs, it doesn’t void their acceptance in God’s house.

Sorry for the tangent, but we need to as a community and the body of Christ to come together to show we are here to love and embrace EVERYONE! Not push our views, condemn, judge, or sneer! Andy asked what are you praying for big, I am praying for a REVOLUTION in the believers community to leave the religion behind and show love, show the love of Christ to everyone around the world. I know it is big but our God is big enough!