CONNECTIONS – 07/25/10

For week of July 25, 2010
Issue 314

The Men’s Ministry newsletter of Path Of Life Ministries.
Our mission is to lead men to Jesus Christ and provide opportunity for Christian men to grow in their faith and minister to others.

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Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”
Colossians 3:1-4

CONSIDER
The moment we choose to love we begin to move against domination, against oppression. The moment we choose to love we begin to move towards freedom, to act in ways that liberate ourselves and others. That action is the testimony of love as the practice of freedom.”
bell hooks from Outlaw Culture

CUSSING ISN’T OUR ONLY PROBLEM — THOUGH THAT’S BAD ENOUGH
by Mollie Ziegler Hemingway
Taking the Lord’s name in vain has become something of a pastime in popular culture. Jonathan Chait, a senior editor at the liberal political magazine The New Republic, wrote a blog post during the health-care debate that shocked me. “J—- C—–,” the headline began, followed by the statement that some arcane legislative process was “Not That Difficult!”

When Tiger Woods returned to golf following his sex scandal, he retained his habit of cussing a blue streak whenever he made a bad shot. “G–! Tiger! J—- C—–!” he said after a lousy drive. The announcers didn’t even flinch. Critics scolded Brit Hume for suggesting that Woods needed Christ’s forgiveness, but almost no one cared when Woods swore in Christ’s name.

Vice President Joe Biden got a lot of grief for dropping the f-bomb before President Obama signed health-care legislation into law. But how many people noticed that he used “Jesus Christ” to curse in a Wall Street Journal interview last year?

Unlike the mythic gods of the ancient world, Yahweh is not revealed only by things in nature but is primarily known by his name and the deeds associated with that name. In the prologue to the Ten Commandments, Yahweh identifies himself and says he brought the Hebrews out of bondage. God’s name is mentioned 5,343 times in 23,213 verses of the Hebrew text of the Bible.

“It is the revelation of his name that makes the Hebrews into his people, and it is by his name that he is to be remembered among his people forever. The name, then, is the only thing that Yahweh’s people have by which to know and to worship him,” writes David L. Adams in The Anonymous God…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2010/july/21.48.html

THE CHRISTIAN ATHEIST: BELIEVING IN GOD BUT LIVING AS IF HE DOESN’T EXIST.
by Craig Groeschel
Charles Blondin was a world-renowned tightrope artist and acrobat. On June 30, 1859, before a stunned crowd of 100,000 excited onlookers, Blondin was the first person to cross Niagara Falls by tightrope. He crossed 1,100 feet on a single three-inch hemp cord, strung from 160 feet above the falls on one side to a spot 270 feet above the falls on the other. The breathless assembly watched him accomplish, step by slow step, a feat most believed impossible.

But Blondin was just getting started. In the years to come, the daring entertainer crossed again and again: on stilts, in a sack, even pushing a wheelbarrow! The story goes that an exuberant onlooker called out, “You could cross with a man in that wheelbarrow!” Blondin agreed and invited the man to climb in. The spectator nervously declined.

My dysfunctional relationship with God was often like that. I’ve always believed in God, just not enough to trust him with my whole life in his wheelbarrow. I knew God could fulfill his promises, but I was never sure he’d do it for me. My selfish Christian Atheist view was that God existed for me, rather than I for him. If he’d do what I thought he should, I’d trust him more. If he’d come through for me, I’d give him more of my life. If he made my life better and pain-free, I’d believe him more passionately. But anytime God didn’t meet my expectations, we had a problem. God created me in his image. I returned the favor and created him in mine. The kind of God I wanted to believe in was this: if he’s not what I want, then he can’t have my whole life…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2010/july/19.58.html

FREE WEBINAR WITH J.I. PACKER
J.I. Packer will answer questions about biblical interpretation in a free webinar August 4 at 10:30 am Central Time. Dr. Packer is the Board of Governors’ Professor of Theology at Regent College in Vancouver and author of numerous books, including Knowing God…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianitytoday.com/lyris/eblast/archives/2010/men-cbs_webinar-072210.html

HIS COMIC BOOKS CONVEY GOD’S STORY
In 1872, baby boy John Harper is born in the dark of night in the Scottish village of Houston.

“Father, he is a gift from You, thus we will dedicate him to You. His name will be John,” his mustached, middle-aged, working-class father declares, looking toward the heavens, clutching the baby to his chest.

“Yes, a good Bible name,” John’s mother says, drops of sweat pouring from her otherwise serene face as she reclines against a rumpled pillow, a midwife looking on.

On a glossy comic book’s opening page, bright graphic artwork in four blocks introduces the engrossing biography of a Baptist preacher who survived three close brushes with drowning before finally perishing with the Titanic.

“The Last Convert of John Harper” is one of a new line of comic books which encompasses five genres — adventure, biography, sci-fi, biblical epic and historical fiction — and the creative passion of Art Ayris, who is both the executive pastor of First Baptist Church in Leesburg, Fla., and CEO of Kingstone Media.

Ayris has long been part of the inventive leadership at First Baptist, a congregation which ministers through a Christian school and through a Christian Care Center encompassing a men’s shelter with drug and alcohol rehabilitation, shelters for women and children, a pregnancy care center, medical help for the unemployed and other benevolence aid and a counseling center….. Read this in full at
http://www.bpnews.net/BPnews.asp?ID=33381

HOW MUCH DO YOU HAVE TO HATE SOMEONE TO NOT PROSELYTIZE?
by James Emery White
As a culture, we are rediscovering the validity of spirituality, once again making room for insight, intuition and even revelation. Articles on angels, near-death experiences, prayer and healing have become cover stories. Spiritual themes run throughout contemporary music. Films and television increasingly explore religious ideas and settings. People are interested in spiritual things, they’re asking spiritual questions and are beginning to see that many of their deepest needs are spiritual in nature.

But in the new search for the spiritual, Christianity may lose while others gain. Or there may be such an eclectic gathering of spiritual commitments that Christianity will, at best, be only sampled. You may have heard of the term metrosexual. A metrosexual is a man found deep in the hair-care aisle or in the salon having his nails buffed to the perfect shine, while he’s checking out the latest fashion magazines. He’s a sensitive, well-educated urban dweller in touch with his feminine side. He loves to shop, wear jewelry and fill his bathroom counter with moisturizers—and maybe even makeup. In other words, he embodies a new definition of what it means to be a man. One that borrows heavily from what it means to be a woman, and combines it into a new identity…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianity.com/Home/Christian%20Living%20Features/11635119/

IN THE LAND OF MAO, A RISING TIDE OF CHRISTIANITY
Official Chinese surveys now show that nearly one in three Chinese describe themselves as religious, an astonishing figure for an officially atheist country, where religion was banned until three decades ago.

The last 30 years of economic reform have seen an explosion of religious belief. China’s government officially recognizes five religions: Protestantism, Catholicism, Buddhism, Islam, and Daoism. The biggest boom of all has been in Christianity, which the government has struggled to control.

One way it has tried to do that is by establishing government-sanctioned churches. In one such church in the east of the country, China’s Protestant heartland, parishioners bow their heads as the pastor says grace. Hundreds are huddled around circular tables to eat lunch.

The official church is part of what’s called the Three-Self Patriotic Movement, the state-sanctioned Protestant organization. Three-Self refers to the strategy launched in the 1950s of removing foreign influences from Chinese churches — self-governance, self-support, self-propagation…. Read this in full at
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=128546334&ft=1&f=1016

EVERYONE COMMUNICATES, FEW CONNECT
Read an excerpt of this book by John Maxwell at
http://www.scribd.com/doc/28231498/Everyone-Communicates-Few-Connect-by-John-C-Maxwell

DO THREE THINGS
Dallas Teague Snider (http://purposewithoutlimits.com/), a speaker, radio host, and personal coach, offers this advice to her clients: “Celebrate success daily. Each day, write down the top three things you must do. You might have other items on your list; however, be sure that you do the top three things. If you will focus on three items each day, five days a week, 52 weeks a year, you will have small successes each day that can help you build a sense of accomplishment. That’s 780 action items. Talk about productive!”
http://www.preaching.com/resources/articles/11635041/

IN FAREWELL, N.T. WRIGHT URGES CHURCH TO PURSUE BOTH JUSTICE, FIDELITY
Bishop Tom Wright bid farewell to the Diocese of Durham July 13 with a reminder to the Church to stand against political correctness and be the voice of justice for the poor and God’s creation.

Delivering his farewell sermon before his retirement as Bishop of Durham in August, Bishop Wright challenged the notion that being interested in social justice meant denying the resurrection of Jesus, whilst being interested in eternal salvation meant having to treat the world as irrelevant. He urged Christians to speak out in the face of injustice and give hope to those in difficulty, such as the poor and asylum seekers. He said: “Some voices are suggesting we should now put the cart before the horse and have the church dance to whichever tunes the government of the day want to play. Not so.” …. Read this in full at
http://www.christiantoday.com/article/bishop.wright.says.church.must.challenge.worlds.selfserving.notions/26287.htm

PASTOR COMPENSATION KEEPS UP WITH INFLATION
Compensation for full-time Southern Baptist pastors is rising slightly faster than inflation. However, the mounting cost of benefits is forcing churches to provide fewer pastors with medical insurance. These and other findings are part of the SBC Church Compensation Study, a survey of 11,674 staff positions in Southern Baptist churches.

Adjusting for church size, the average full-time Southern Baptist senior pastor’s compensation (salary and housing) rose 0.78% between 2008 and 2010. That rate of change was only slightly higher than the compounded 0.67% inflation rate for the same period.

“Not all churches have paid non-pastoral staff, especially small churches,” Scott McConnell, associate director of LifeWay Research, said. “Churches with these positions gave larger salary increases than the average church gave their senior pastor over the last two years.”…. Read this in full at
http://www.bpnews.net/bpnews.asp?id=33353

GROWTH THROUGH ADVERSITY
I have no reason to complain of any crosses, because they are the bitter fruit of my sin. Nothing shall hurt us but sin; and that shall not hurt us, if we can repent of it. And nothing can do us good but the love and favour of God in Christ; and that we shall have if we seek it in good earnest. Afflictions are God’s potions, which we may sweeten by faith and prayer; but we often make them bitter, by putting into God’s cup the ill ingredients of impatience and unbelief. There is no affliction so small but we shall sink under it, if God uphold us not: and there is no sin so great but we shall commit it, if God restrain us not. A man who hath the spirit of prayer hath more than if he hath all the world. And no man is in a bad condition, but he who hath a hard heart and cannot pray.”
John Dod (c.1549-1645), as quoted in The Lives of the Puritans, v. III, Benjamin Brook, London: J. Black, 1813, p. 3

NAVPRESS LAUNCHES BIBLE VERSE MEMORY APP
NavPress, a leader in discipleship and Scripture-memory resources, has released the VerseMinder Topical Memory System iPhones app on iTunes.

Based on the popular Topical Memory System (TMS) developed by The Navigators, VerseMinder Topical Memory System marks a first-of-its-kind development for NavPress. With 60 verses in the NIV, NASB, KJV, and NKJV versions, all organized by topics, this app helps on-the-go users memorize Bible verses in the translation of their choice and at their own pace.

NavPress is excited to make our Scripture memory system available for a mobile device. We believe in the truth and sufficiency of Scripture for the whole of life and are committed to translating that belief into new tools in this digital age,” says Michael Visentine, NavPress COO. “We’re currently looking into additional mobile platforms and plan on launching more apps in the future.”

VerseMinder Topical Memory System is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad; it doesn’t need an Internet connection. It requires .5 MB and iOS 3.0 or later. It retails for $3.99 at iTunes.

US TEENS HESITANT TO EVANGELIZE, STUDY FINDS
Mission News Network reports that Christian teens in the US are less enthusiastic about sharing their faith than they were in 1998. According to a new study from the Barna Group, less than half of teenagers (45%) say they’ve explained their beliefs to someone with different faith views in the last year. In 1997, that number was almost two-third of teenagers (63%). “I think many teens as well as young college students have really bought into the cultural view of tolerance,” said Terry Erickson, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship National Director of Evangelism. “You don’t want to offend anyone, so there’s a reluctance to share your faith. So we see lots of students that have to get over that hurdle in college if they want to do evangelism.”
http://www.mnnonline.org/article/14487

VERSE TO PONDER
A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.”
Proverbs 15:1

CONSIDER
Be persuaded, timid soul, that He has loved you too much to cease loving you.”
Francois Fenelon (1651-1715), Selections from Fenelon, ed. Mary Wilder Tileston, Boston: Roberts Bros., 1879, p. 188

PLANNING IN ORGANIZATIONS
Planning is traditionally considered to be one of the four major functions of management, along with organizing, leading and coordinating/controlling. Simply put, planning is identifying where you want to go, why you want to go there, how you will get there, what you need in order to get there and how you will know if you’re there or not. The following are many of the types of plans generated in a business organizations…. Read this in full at
http://managementhelp.org/plan_dec/plan_dec.htm

PRESIDENT OBAMA’S IN-HOUSE PASTOR
The young minister’s alarm goes off at 6 am, time for his own devotional and the one he will send to the president of the United States. This particular morning, Joshua DuBois, director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, meditates on the disciple Peter’s first letter to the early church. The text he prays over and emails to Barack Obama half an hour later is about something else.

It’s a private start to the day for the president and the pastor, a spiritual BlackBerry session they guard carefully. Hours later, they meet in a public setting, when the president arrives to give a speech at a community center. DuBois is wearing an ear bud and carrying a clipboard, standard equipment for a mid-level White House staffer. Obama climbs from his car and greets DuBois and another aide with a casual, “Hey, guys.” ….. Read this in full at
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-white-house-minister-20100721,0,4142629,full.story

NATIONAL ‘BACK TO CHURCH SUNDAY’
Momentum is building for national “Back To Church Sunday,” slated for Sept. 12. Already more than 1,500 churches across the country have committed to inviting people who once attended church — but who don’t anymore — to special worship services.

Last year, hundreds of churches took part in the first national “Back To Church Sunday” (www.backtochurch.com), which saw members invite more than 700,000 friends and family. This year, an estimated 1 million “unchurched” and “dechurched” people will be invited to the special day.

A survey by Outreach, Inc., a California-based church marketing company supporting the initiative, found that last year’s participating churches increased their weekend attendance on average by 19%.

“A recent survey of 15,000 Americans indicated that 67% would be open to an invitation to church coming from a member of their family,” said Ed Stetzer, president of LifeWay Research, an organization dedicated to church health and effectiveness. “‘Back To Church Sunday’ is a great opportunity for reminding and refocusing church members to reach out to their unchurched family members.” …. Read this in full at
http://www.religionnews.com/index.php?/pressreleases/momentum_building_across_america_for_national_back_to_church_sunday/

GROWING MOVEMENT OF CHRISTIANS SKIP THE SERMON, WORSHIP IN SMALL GROUPS AT HOME
To get to church on a recent Sunday morning, the Yeldell family walked no farther than their own living room to greet fellow worshippers.

The members of this “house church” are part of what experts say is a fundamental shift in the way US Christians think about church. Skip the sermons, costly church buildings and large, faceless crowds, they say. House church is about relationships forged in small faith communities.

In general, house churches consist of 12 to 15 people who share what’s going on in their lives, often turning to Scriptures for guidance. They rely on the Holy Spirit or spontaneity to lead the direction of their weekly gatherings…. Read this in full at
http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/faith/98936519.htmlhttp://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/faith/98936519.html

NIV BIBLES TOP AMAZON AND APPLE EBOOK RELIGION CHARTS
Ebooks are among the fastest-growing segments in the publishing industry, and eBibles are no different. Zondervan NIV Bible and Zondervan NIV Study Bible have been among the Top Five eBooks in the Religion & Spirituality Category of Apple’s iBookstore and Amazon’s Kindle Store since the beginning of 2010.

“A growing number of consumers are adopting the e-reader format, whether it’s the Amazon Kindle, the Apple iPad, Barnes & Noble Nook or Sony Reader. Many of these consumers are purchasing an eBible so they can have the Word of God in an easy to use digital format,” said Chip Brown, senior vice president and publisher of Bibles at Zondervan. “We’re encouraged by the success of our eBibles to date and remain committed to offering consumers the content and features they want in the format they desire.”

Zondervan’s eBibles now represent more than 40 percent of the company’s eBook revenues, and in several instances they also outsell some traditional hardcover Bible products. From mid-May to mid-June, the Zondervan NIV Study Bible eBook for Kindle sold more units on Amazon.com than the hardcover edition…. Read this in full at
http://christiannewswire.com/news/8435814465.html

GUIDEPOSTS RELAUNCHES WEBSITE WITH CONTENT AIMED AT EXPANDING ITS AUDIENCE
Guideposts, the non-profit organization dedicated to providing hope, encouragement, and inspiration to millions across America and the world, has relaunched its website with a whole new look and feel. The new Guideposts.org offers daily inspirational stories, blogs, photos, and videos as well as a library of free ebooks. Additionally, the website has expanded its newsletter offerings and daily content based on the needs and interests of Guideposts readers.

“For more than sixty years, millions have come to Guideposts for inspiration. The redesigned Guideposts.org builds on that legacy by providing users with access to more free inspirational content as a way to introduce the expanding suite of Guideposts products.” said Philip Charles-Pierre, VP, Digital Media, Guideposts. “By providing users this unprecedented access, we hope to attract new users to Guideposts, and to become their new source of inspiration, hope, and encouragement regardless of lifestage or need.”
http://www.guideposts.org/

CROSSES
On the same Christmas day that Caleb and Eli each gave me a flashlight, Celeste gave me a cross made of two nails welded together and polished. I saw it at an arts-and-crafts fair and dropped a subtle hint, something like, ‘Hey, why don’t you buy me that for Christmas?’ Celeste has always been attuned to my nuances.

I like this cross because it has some heft to it. I used to wear a small cross made of light stone, but there were plenty of times I forgot it was there. I can feel this one thump against my chest when I walk, and poke my skin when I twist the wrong way. Crosses are only what we make of them, I suppose, if that. Some people like small crosses tucked beneath a shirt, others like a bold crucifix dangling outside their vestments. As for me, I like this simple cross of nails against my skin. At times it is the slightest bit painful, and its weight keeps it never far from my mind. I’ve done my blackest deeds when I put the cross far from mind. I need this weight, just like I need my bookmarks and flashlights and love offerings of sticky chewing gum.”
Tony Woodlief, from his book Somewhere More Holy

LAWMAKERS TURN TO FAITH LEADERS
Associated Press reporter Christine Simmons explores the role religious leaders often play as unofficial confidants and advisers to members of Congress. She cites a 2008 Pew Forum report that found that more than half the members of Congress are Protestant, about 30% are Catholic, and about 8% are Jewish…. Read this in full at
http://hosted2.ap.org/WTICAM/b7538a1b675b4d059de3e728edc01923/Article_2010-07-13-US-DC-Confidential/id-36f756f717e14331ba2b75439e6e91d6

PEW FORUM RESOURCES ON CATHOLICISM AND THE POPE
The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life has a variety of resources on Catholicism and Pope Benedict XVI, including public opinion polls, research studies, event transcripts and interviews.
http://pewforum.org/Christian/Catholic/Pew-Forum-Resources-on-Catholicism-and-the-Pope.aspx

LIVING FOR SOMETHING BIGGER
by Paul David Tripp
I went for years as a Christian and didn’t really understand confession. I think there’s a subtle, yet significant, difference between the admission of wrong and true heart confession. True confession always results in forsaking the small aims of a self-centered life and living for something bigger…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianity.com/Home/My%20Bible%20Study%20Tools/11579264/

THE BIBLE AND YOU
There is, in a word, nothing comfortable about the Bible — until we manage to get so used to it that we make it comfortable for ourselves. But then we are perhaps too used to it and too at home in it. Let us not be too sure we know the Bible … just because we have learned not to have problems with it. Have we perhaps learned … not to really pay attention to it? Have we ceased to question the book and be questioned by it?”
Thomas Merton, from his book Opening the Bible

ON TARGET MINISTRIES JOINS MEN’S MINISTRY CHANNEL ON SKY ANGEL’S NATIONWIDE TV SERVICE
Sky Angel, an affordable faith-based television service available in the US, announces the addition of On Target Ministries programs to the Men’s Ministry On Demand channel (www.skyangel.com). The Men’s Ministry channel brings together some of the most challenging and inspiring video content, sermons, conferences, bible studies, tools to use at work and movies guys love. Sky Angel subscribers will find the content by choosing Video On Demand, selecting the Grow category then choosing Men’s Ministry and On Target Ministries.

On Target Ministries is a Christian outreach to men, pastors, and couples led by Vince D’Acchioli. On Target will be launching their 1 year curriculum series called Men on Target, as well as volume one of “Essentials of the Journey,” on Sky Angel’s On Demand section of the television service…. Read this in full at
http://christiannewswire.com/news/3626014458.html

LUTHERANS FORGE AHEAD ON PLAN TO REACH 100M PEOPLE
The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod has raised more than half of the $100 million it needs to launch 2,000 new congregations, revitalize existing ones and support outreach efforts worldwide. The denomination is looking to complete the fundraising campaign by Reformation Day 2011.

Called Fan into Flame, the campaign was launched in 2005 in an effort to gather support for the LCMS Ablaze! movement, through which Lutherans hope to share the Gospel with 100 million people worldwide by the year 2017. That year marks the 500th anniversary of the Reformation when German theologian Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianpost.com/article/20100715/lutherans-forge-ahead-on-plan-to-reach-100m-people/index.html

ASSOCIATED BAPTIST PRESS CELEBRATES 20 YEARS MARKED BY GROWING PAINS
July 17 marked the 20th birthday of Associated Baptist Press, an independent news service created by and for Baptists interested in a free press during a tumultuous time within the Southern Baptist Convention.

On July 17, 1990, the SBC Executive Committee voted in a closed session to fire the two top editors of Baptist Press. The committee chairman said it was because members believed BP’s coverage was biased against conservatives who, over the course of a decade, had gained majorities on most of the convention’s boards of trustees. Those boards included the Executive Committee itself.

Upon learning he had lost his job as BP’s news editor, Dan Martin, 51, told a crowd of about 200 supporters at the Executive Committee headquarters in Nashville, Tenn., that leaders of the denomination wanted to replace the journalists at the convention’s official news service with “their own minister of information.” …. Read this in full at
http://www.abpnews.com/content/view/5354/53/

ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS
The book of Job is known even by those who have no respect for God and his Word as that which best symbolizes the struggle of pain. Yet few have taken to heart what Job really says. I remember debating an atheist in which he quoted from Job and said that the answers given to Job were insufficient. I surprised him by telling him that Job would agree with him.

Then I asked him if he knew what Job’s answer was to that insufficiency he was offered? The man was silent. Job finds his answer in stages. He refuses to let one diagnosis or a great one-liner provide the satisfactory explanation for his situation. He starts his journey toward finding his answer for suffering and pain from the assumption of God as the Creator and Designer to seeing God as the Revealer of Truth, to recognizing him as Redeemer and Savior, and finally to experiencing him as the Restorer and Comforter.

How fascinating, for here the three aspects of the Trinity emerge — God the Father as Creator, God the Son as Redeemer, and God the Holy Spirit as Comforter. This triune God is a Being within whom there is a relationship. For Job, the overwhelming answer to his questions was not found in an argument. It was not found in a theological, philosophical, or scientific proposition. It was not even found in his relationships with his friends or his family, or in the truth or falsehood of their analyses of Job’s problems. Job ultimately found the answer to his questions and his fear – to his pain and his grief — in the voice of God and his divine encounter with him. The answer to his questions was a Person.”
Ravi Zacharias, from his book Has Christianity Failed You?

FOR WEIGHT-LOSS HELP, FAITHFULS TURN TO GOD
Hallelujah diets. Body by God. Karate for Christ. Gospel groove workouts. Using the Lord’s name (not in vain), fitness and diet enthusiasts are injecting the Almighty into nutrition programs, exercise DVDs, martial arts and healthy living courses.

In a DVD released in June, a gospel choir in full-length gowns sways back and forth while a fitness personality, Donna Richardson Joyner, sashays to her aerobic exercises. Her smiling, spandex-clad entourage echoes her movements. All lift their hands to praise the Lord. “Give him some love!” she shouts. “Honor him!”

Exercise DVDs with religious themes, such as this one, have streamed into the market. More churches have opened fitness centers and started healthy living groups…. Read this in full at
http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/07/21/faith.fitness.god/index.html

ARGENTINA LEGALIZES GAY MARRIAGE; FIRST IN LATIN AMERICA
Argentina legalized same-sex marriage July 15, offering gay couples all the same rights given to their heterosexual counterparts, including adopting children.

In a 33 to 27 vote, with three abstentions, Argentina became the first country in Latin America to legally recognize gay marriage. While same-sex civil unions are recognized in Buenos Aires, parts of Mexico and Brazil and in Uruguay, no other Latin American country prior to Argentina had allowed gay and lesbian couples to marry.

The unprecedented legislation passed despite intense opposition by the Roman Catholic Church, which is powerful in the predominantly Catholic nation. President Cristina Fernandez and her center-left government are strong advocates of gay rights and legalization of gay marriage. Fernandez has stated she will sign the legislation.
Cardinal Jorge Mario
…. Read this in full at
http://www.christianpost.com/article/20100715/argentina-legalizes-gay-marriage-first-in-latin-america/index.html

CONSIDER
Half the world is starving; the other half is on a diet. We are not privileged because we deserve to be. Privilege accepted should mean responsibility accepted.”
Madeleine L’Engle

VERSE TO PONDER
Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.”
Hebrews 9:28

THIS WEEK’S HYMN: FATHER, IN WHOM WE LIVE
Words: Charles Wesley, 1747
Music: George J. Elvey, 1868

Father, in Whom we live, in Whom we are and move,
The glory, power and praise receive for Thy creating love.
Let all the angel throng give thanks to God on high,
While earth repeats the joyful song and echoes to the sky.

Incarnate Deity, let all the ransomed race
Render in thanks their lives to Thee for Thy redeeming grace.
The grace to sinners showed ye heavenly choirs proclaim,
And cry “Salvation to our God, salvation to the Lamb!”

Spirit of Holiness, let all Thy saints adore
Thy sacred energy, and bless Thine heart renewing power.
Not angel tongues can tell Thy love’s ecstatic height,
The glorious joy unspeakable the beatific sight.

Eternal, Triune God, let all the hosts above,
Let all on earth below record and dwell upon Thy love.
When heaven and earth are fled before Thy glorious face,
Sing all the saints Thy love hath made Thine everlasting praise.

>from NetHymnal at
http://nethymnal.org/htm/f/a/t/fatherin.htm

ON PRAYER
A man who loves the Bible will love to pray. A man who loves to pray will delight in the law of the Lord.” EM Bounds

PRAY FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS TODAY
http://christiansincrisis.net/

DAILY BLESSING PACT
Use the following list as your daily prayer guide. Think of a brother or situation that applies and lift them up in prayer.

I am agreeing in prayer with you for God’s blessings to overtake you!

PERSONAL
Marital harmony
Family unity
Children saved
Faithful pastor
Spirit-filled church
Real friendships
Relatives redeemed
Educational benefits
Recreational time
Fulfilling career
Favor with God and man
Be in God’s will

FINANCIAL
Better Jobs
Raises or bonuses
Benefits
Sales & commissions
Business Growth
Settlements
Estates & inheritances
Investment increase
Rebates & returns
Checks in the mail
Gifts & surprises
Money to be found
Bills decrease while blessings increase

“And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God” (Deut. 28:2).

[As you travel on business or vacation, let me know if you’d like the church guys to pray for your safety and spiritual effectiveness. I’ll add your name to the list for the time you’ll be away.]

CLASSIFIEDS
Are you looking for something or do you have something to sell? Let me know and I’ll put it in this newsletter.

Book your next vacation with us!
http://www.ChristianConnectionTravel.com

Books, Music & More!
http://www.ChristianConnectionBooks.com

Get your domain name here!
http://www.GoGlobalDomains.com

Let me show you how to earn money as you travel!
http://www.earnGlobalVacations.com/
It’s as easy as 1-2-3!

SHARE YOUR FAVORITE WEBSITES
Tell us what sites you find enjoyable and why.

iPhone Central
http://www.macworld.com/weblogs/iphonecentral.html

All links to websites are provided as a service, and do not imply endorsement by this ministry.

(BTW: whenever the URLs in this newsletter are too long to turn into links on your e-mail program, just copy the entire URL (two lines or more) and paste it into a temporary email message. Then delete the return in the middle of it and copy it again. Then paste it into your web browser and hit enter.)

If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.
Min. Frank Coleman, Editor
Rev.frank@gmail.com

Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!

———-

CONNECTIONS is a periodic newsletter of announcements, news, recommendations, articles, and other information helpful to men in our spiritual growth. Thanks for welcoming CONNECTIONS into your in-box!

———–

The CONNECTIONS Team offers a variety of activities for men to interact with other men on our journey of faith in Christ together. Large group, small group, and one-to-one events encourage relationship building and spiritual strengthening that result in maximizing the potential we all have in Christ.
Contact Min. Frank Coleman, 773-410-1483, frank@frankcoleman.com if you’d like to participate in a men’s discipleship program.
Path Of Life Ministries is located in Chicago, IL.
Visit our website at: http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/

———-

Subscribe!
Subscribe to CONNECTIONS here

Get Archives of all past issues here:
http://www.pathoflifeministries.net/connections/archives_all.html

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