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Showing posts from April, 2011

Royal Weddings, Presidents in Disasters, and the Incarnation

As I sit down to write this, my heart is still heavy for my fellow Southerners that have lost so much in tornadoes this week. Mock us all you want for not knowing how to drive in snow, but these storms? Those are a fact of life for us. It's not if a Southerner's life is affected by a tornado. It's not even when. It's how many and  how close?  The roof portion we lost in Mississippi back in 2008 is nothing compared to the property loss, much less life lost this week.On to the task at hand: a real blog post. To look at current events today, there are three big things happening, and I'm going to take a look at two of them right here.First of all, there is now a new Duchess of Cambridge in Her Majesty's United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. His Royal Highness William, Prince of Wale, wed Catherine Middleton. Theoretically, Prince William, son of Prince Charles and the late Lady Diana, is second in line for the throne, but the aforementioned Prince C…

BookTuesday: Time with God for Fathers

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As we approach Mother's Day and Father's Day, there will be a nice list of books marketed as gift books for those occasions. Ann recently review Time with God for Mothers, and I've got Time with God for Fathers.As a gift book, this is short. On its own, that's not good or bad. The buyer should be aware of it, though. This is not a long, in-depth devotional like My Utmost for His Highest or On This Day in Christian History. The author intended short, and short is what you get.The devotionals are good, though they are not incredibly deep or moving if the reader is used to a daily devotional. However, for someone getting started in the practice of a daily time, this is a good entry point. The content is generic enough to be of value to anyone claiming the Christian faith. You'll not find any devotions extolling denominational specifics. There are also none highlighting any non-Biblical people. The sole focus here is on fathers and Scripture.The weakness here is obviou…

Easter Sermons

Early AM Sermon AudioAM Sermon AudioBeing Sunday People in a Saturday WorldJohn 19:31-42: Read it all:“Then the Jews, because it was the day of preparation, so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came, and broke the legs of the first man and of the other who was crucified with Him; but coming to Jesus, when they saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you also may believe. For these things came to pass to fulfill the Scripture, “Not a bone of Him shall be broken.” And again another Scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they pierced.” After these things Joseph of Arimathea, being a disciple of Jesus,…

Consider yourself warned

Last night, the name of the small town I live in was mentioned on the 2 of the broadcast TV stations in Little Rock. While this sounds like we have arrived into fame, it was actually this:"Looks like that rotation is headed toward….Almyra."That rotation? Well, that's the radar echo in a cloud that makes the weatherman think a tornado is either there or soon to be there. It's not a happy thing.At that point, we decided to go ahead and get the kids up, move them to our bedroom, and watch to see what happened. Before that, just Ann and I were up and watching radar screens. Well, watching the internet posts of radar screens. We don't have our own weather radar though that would be awesome!It's a debate for us how to respond to the storm warnings. We've both been here in the South for a long time, and we're kind of dull towards certain weather words because of it. "Tornado watch" and "Severe Thunderstorm Watch" are two of them. Why? The…

BookTuesday: Max on Life

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Just like last week, BookTuesday is making a special Monday appearance. Thomas Nelson Publishers has a good April going, with last week's release of Andy Andrews' The Final Summit and then this week's special release. What is this week's? It is the latest book from Max Lucado, Max on Life. Here's a picture of the cover and the expected Amazon.com link:Max On Life: Answers and Insights to Your Most Important QuestionsThis book is a departure from the typical Max Lucado fare. If you've typically read Max Lucado, you've seen him illustrate the 23rd Psalm, the story of the Crucifixion, and the return of Christ. He typically writes inspirational stories to illuminate specific passages of Scripture, and he does it well. The departure here is that Max on Life is a collection of answers to letters and questions.  In total, there are 172 questions with one to two page answers for each of them. Lucado reports these as real questions that have been posed to him. By su…

Sermons: Palm Sunday

Morning Audio LinkEvening Audio LinkMorning Sermon: What's happening? I. It's time to enter Jerusalem:      A. First important point: Coming in from outside the city      B. Second important point: Riding on a donkey:           1. Sign of peaceful entry           2. Fulfillment of Zechariah 9 prophecy II. The crowds:      A. Shouting "Hosanna"      B. Incorrect identification---"This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee" III. This is how the same crowd turns a deaf ear (at best) to "Crucify!" in less than a week: (Note: there are changes, certainly, as much of the Sunday crowd is also coming into Jerusalem, and it seems the crowd on Friday is assembled within the city. However, where did those people go? The Passover is that day. They’re around there somewhere.) How we identify Jesus matters 1. There is a constant pressure to redefine Jesus:      On CNN's website just this past week someone tried to redefine Jesus as not knowing or a…

The wheat and the tares

We're growing a garden this year in the Hibbard family. We've planted corn, carrots, cantaloupe, broccoli, and tomatoes. Right now, as I look at the garden, I see lots of little green sprouts coming up.Sounds good, right?Well, about half of those green sprouts are grass. Some of those sprouts are weeds. A few of them really are the plants we want to grow.I'm just not sure which ones. This has shed a whole new light Matthew 13:24-30 for me. This parable teaches about a field sown with both good and bad seed, and how the field owner allowed both types to grow until harvest.I'm not going to allow both types to grow all the way until harvest, but I do have to let them grow a little while longer. At least some of them I'll have to. Here's the breakdown:1. There are some sprouts that are obviously grass. I can tell this by the root runners to the grass outside of the garden. Those are coming up right now.2. There are some sprouts that will show themselves pretty soon…

BookTuesday: The Final Summit

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Yes, it’s Monday. Occasionally, in exchange for a free book, I have to write a review with a due date. This is one of those cases. The date? Today, April 11. So, BookTuesday on Monday.What is the book? This book is Andy Andrews’ newest book: The Final Summit. Here’s the Amazon link: The Final Summit: A Quest to Find the One Principle That Will Save HumanityHere are a few things this book is not about:Quitting mountain climbing. It’s not that kind of summit. Crystal-clear theology. Let’s clear that up right quick: This book is a fictional story, not a theological treatise. You should never base your theology on fiction. Ever. Fiction illustrates principles and can teach principles, but take the principles from fact. It’s not about a feather, no matter what the cover art seems to show.Ready to move on?Good. This book is about:History. Andrews is at his best when taking historical facts and weaving them into points that the reader can apply right now. He did this for The Traveler’s Gi…

Sermons: April 10

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Morning Audio Link hereEvening Audio Link hereA couple of quick notes:Sunday morning, the audio is a little different. Why? Well, I left my recorder at home, so I captured the audio via Blackberry. And you know how Blackberries get sometimes: frozen.We observed the Lord’s Supper, so the overall service ran differently. Also, picture this: in front of the table with the elements of the Lord’s Supper, there’s a table stacked pell-mell with books. Lots of books. Got the picture?Good.Also, there’s not a written outline for the evening service. Why? Because I haven’t written one. Sometimes, I just don’t. This is one of those times.

Here's to Yuri

I nearly missed an important anniversary this weekend. No, mine's in December. Rather, this weekend has been the 50th anniversary of the first man to enter space and return. Cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin launched into space in 1961, causing a panic in the United States and a rush to the moon for us.I was reading the AP article about the original mission and noticed this exchange which I thought worthwhile:On the eve of the flight, Gagarin and his backup, German Titov, went to bed early and were awakened at 5:30 a.m. Gagarin was joking, his pulse was an exemplary 64 beats a minute and it remained the same after he took his seat in the Vostok.Before boarding, Gagarin saw Korolyov looking haggard after a sleepless night. "Don't you worry, Sergei Pavlovich, he told the chief designer, "everything will be just fine." "It was he who was comforting me!" Korolyov would marvel later. He thought of Gagarin as a son, and Gagarin carried Korolyov's picture in his wal…

I don’t live….well, anywhere

A little less than a year ago, Ann and I moved to Almyra, Arkansas. It’s great town with some very wonderful people in it. Moving here, we’ve really only had one major problem. Care to know what it is?Our address doesn’t exist.Seriously.There are some underlying components of this:1. There’s only about 300 people in town. So, the Post Office doesn’t deliver to the main part of town. Everybody gets a PO Box. 2. In Google Maps, and apparently their underlying source, “Eleventh” Street is spelled as “Elevth” Street. This also confuses such wizard-like objects as GPS receivers.3. Many companies use the address verification database provided by the Postal Service.So, what has happened?Well, we upgraded our cell phones, but they couldn’t send them to us. Why? Our address isn’t real and AT&T won’t ship to a PO Box. Never mind that UPS knows where we are and has no problems with it.FedEx Express can find us, but FedEx Ground couldn’t even find the street. There have been problems with ban…

Milk: it does not the Body good

“Concerning him we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. ” (Hebrews 5:11–12, NASB95) This morning, reading through Hebrews, I hit this verse. The first thought was the normal one: there were immature people being addressed in this passage, and we have immature Christians in churches, and they need to get mature. Except that, well, one of the absolute worst things you can do with the Word of God is look at the Word and then not look at yourself. We do much damage to others when we don’t look in the mirror first. As I looked at this a second time, I began wondering: where am I in terms of having solid food? Am I really past needing milk? Not that a little bit from time to time isn’t a necessity. We’re all helped by remembering the basics of the Gosp…

BookTuesday: Heaven Revealed

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Today's BookTuesday selection comes, freely given and freely reviewed, from Moody Publishers. This book, and a copy to be given away to a reader of either my blog or Ann's, were provided in exchange for the review.What is this book? It's from Paul Enns, and the title is Heaven Revealed. Which you knew from the title of the post-right? Right. Here's a picture with a link to Amazon, in case you'd like to buy this book: Heaven Revealed: What Is It Like? What Will We Do? . . . And 11 Other Things You've Wondered AboutNow, to the question of whether or not you should buy this book. I'll admit that my first reaction to the book's title was wrong. Right now, the publishing world seems to be awash with books about going to heaven and coming back. These books border somewhere between entertaining but questionable to outright nonsense. (Click here to read someone else's review of one of them---I'll be reading that particular book later this month.)How…

Sermons: April 3 2011

Morning Audio Link HereEvening Audio Link HereNote: Due to changes in servers, older sermons, especially pre-January 2011 will probably not link properly. If you really want to hear those, shoot me a message and I can email them to you.~~DougMorning Outline:Matthew 25:1-13The Bridegroom as Christ--What is the story here?It's a story of preparedness. Of readiness. That's the main point, certainly, that we ought to keep oil on hand for our lamps.Yet let's dig into this parable, let's consider what's going on here.First, a few identifications. Parables are meant to make a point. The people and events are generally meant to symbolize a larger group.So, to the text: The Bridegroom is the Lord Jesus Christ. It's typically hard to find a parable in the New Testament that the King or the Groom or the Chief isn't there to point you to Jesus. Even if the king in the parable is wicked, he's there to point you to the not-ever-wicked King Jesus.So we see that the Br…

Blog Preview

I would apologize for my lack of content lately, but instead I'll just go ahead and issue everyone refunds on your March subscription payments. Then, I'll make sure April is really worth the money. Actually, nobody has complained or even really noticed that I didn't blog most of March. I'm not sure if there's been a gaping hole in your lives that you just couldn't bring yourself to talk about or if you were just being gracious. Whatever the case may be, thanks for coming back.Just as an aside, though, does anyone else get a little aggravated when people go to heavy duty complaining about things like Gmail, Twitter, or Facebook not doing exactly what you want them to do? It's one thing when say, FedEx, doesn't even bother to try to deliver your package: you paid for that service, they should deliver. What did you pay Twitter? Facebook? Not a dime---so take a deep breath and read a book when they go down. Make a <gasp> phone call…I thought I'd g…

The House Saga

I'm back into a blog habit, but I'm coming back with a bit of wordiness, so if you're busy, skip this. Seriously, it's long.I want to give an update on our house saga. To do that, let's give you the background: a little over four years ago, we lived in an apartment. We were in Mid-America Seminary Student Housing. We had moved there in 2002, and had been in housing for 4 years. I had been in and out of school due to finances and some other frustrations over those years, but the vacancy ratio in housing encouraged the school to just let us stay put.However, MABTS was relocating and building new housing in the process. For the first time, student housing would be within walking distance of the school, and this was (and is) a great thing! The school, though, sold the existing apartment complex. The low rent was going to go to a market-value rent. Which was going to be about $900, according to the management that said "they still weren't sure." So, with A…