Friday, February 26, 2010

Emotions and Memory

I was defending my Doctor of Ministry research project the other day and one of my readers, Ed Welch, mentioned something about the place of emotions in counseling. I said that I thought emotions impacted the various events in our lives in a way that made them stand out in our experience. The stronger the emotion we feel the more likely it will be that the event that gave rise to the emotion will be one we will remember for a long time. Our emotions act as a kind of carrier which make events more vivid and the memory of the experience more full. For example everyone can remember what happened at 9:00 AM on September 11, 2001, but not many can remember what they were doing at 9:00 AM on September 10, 2001. The reason might be that there has been a lot of attention given to the former date and not much to the latter. But I would contend that it is actually because there was more emotion associated with 9/11 than with 9/10.

No Shame

So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, "This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man." Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
Genesis 2:21-25

Friday, February 19, 2010

Jubilant With Joy

But the righteous shall be glad; they shall exult before God;
they shall be jubilant with joy!
Sing to God, sing praises to his name;
lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts;
his name is the LORD; exult before him!
Psalm 68:3-4 ESV

The Grace of God Trains Us

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people,  training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age,  waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,  who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.
Titus 2:11-14 ESV

Confusing Stew

People often present a stew of problems: anger, desires, frustrations, fears, immorality, confusion, defensiveness, cruelty, interpersonal disasters, instability, misery, substance abuse, and anxiety. These defy simple categorization on a behavioral problem list! But such a confusing stew can be tied, item after item, to organizing themes in a person’s life. The Scripture presents many such themes: pride, the fear of man, mammon, the desires of the flesh, idolatry, trust in man and so forth. Biblical counselors need to learn to think thematically about the heart.
David Powlison, Crucial Issues in Contemporary Biblical Counseling, 60.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

1 John 1:1-10

Remember we begin with the “what does it say?” questions, move to the “what does it mean?” questions, and then, “what do we do with it?” questions.

Vss. 1-4
This first chapter is not really written in a flowing sort of way. One sentence does not really lead into the next sentence. So we’ll have to approach the text in a different way than with most of the rest of the book.

Who wrote the book? Who was it written to?
What is John talking about right from the start?
What other book begins by talking about the word?
What has John done with the word? “Word of life” Phil 2:16

Where Knowledge Begins

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Proverbs 1:7 ESV

Let All the Upright in Heart Exult!

Hear my voice, O God, in my complaint;
preserve my life from dread of the enemy.
Hide me from the secret plots of the wicked,
from the throng of evildoers,
who whet their tongues like swords,
who aim bitter words like arrows,
shooting from ambush at the blameless,
shooting at him suddenly and without fear.
They hold fast to their evil purpose;
they talk of laying snares secretly,
thinking, "Who can see them?"
They search out injustice, saying,
"We have accomplished a diligent search."
For the inward mind and heart of a man are deep!
But God shoots his arrow at them;
they are wounded suddenly.
They are brought to ruin,
with their own tongues turned against them;
all who see them will wag their heads.
Then all mankind fears;
they tell what God has brought about
and ponder what he has done.
Let the righteous one rejoice in the LORD and take refuge in him!
Let all the upright in heart exult!
Psalm 64:1-10 ESV

Monday, February 15, 2010

I Wait All Day Long

Make me to know your ways,
O LORD; teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long.
Psalm 25:4-5 ESV

Pressing On

Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,  I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13-14 ESV

Friday, February 12, 2010

With Thankfulness in Your Heart

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Colossians 3:16-17 ESV

Be Glad and Exult in God

I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart;
I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.
I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.
Psalm 9:1-2 ESV

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Take Refuge in Him

But let all who take refuge in you rejoice;
let them ever sing for joy,
and spread your protection over them,
that those who love your name may exult in you.
For you bless the righteous, O LORD;
you cover him with favor as with a shield.
Psalm 5:11-12 ESV

Monday, February 08, 2010

Running is Good

So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels.
2 Timothy 2:22-23 ESV

Monday, February 01, 2010

My Servant Shall Be Exhalted

Behold, my servant shall act wisely; he shall be high and lifted up, and shall be exalted.  As many were astonished at you—his appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance, and his form beyond that of the children of mankind—so shall he sprinkle many nations; kings shall shut their mouths because of him; for that which has not been told them they see, and that which they have not heard they understand.
Isaiah 52:13-15 ESV

Not Real Science

Hi Wilbur,

I understand what you said [an explanation of evolution]. Except for a few of the particulars, I've known what you're saying for the past 50 years or so. There's nothing new here.

What I'm wondering about is why you are so content to believe what they are telling you. You must not be a baby boomer. In the baby boomer generation, one of the creeds was, "Why?" "Why should I believe you?" "Who says?" "Where did you get that?"

The way we used it was to challenge authority, and to upset anything that stood for solidarity or permanence. Change was always good, even if it was for its own sake.