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The letter to the editor that I wrote to the Progress-Index was printed today.  You can read it here.

The editor and I had to change the letter quite a bit because the mall management wouldn’t return phone calls from the editor.  Since mall management wouldn’t confirm that Ron and I were banned, we decided to focus on the legality of the mall’s leafleting policy.

So what now?  Pray.  Pray for the mall management.  The mall seems to hiding behind unreasonable rules and deception (that’s what started this whole mess).  Pray that the gospel will continue to move forward through our city and that the Lord will continue to use Ron and I as conduits for the gospel.

Thanks for reading.  Please leave any comments you feel lead to leave.

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We know God wants what’s best for us here and now.  He is concerned with what is best for us right this moment.  He wants you to be comfortable and clean.  Just claim it.  Believe it.

And then watch this…

“a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited.  Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me,  “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” -2 Corinthians 12:7-10

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For the 2 people that read this blog, you’ll remember the ridiculous incident of my fellow evangelist, Ron Fletcher, and I getting banned from the mall.  If you’ve stumbled here for the first time today, well go here to get caught up.

Last night was the prayer walk at the mall that Dianna Penn and my wife, Belinda, organized.  A handful of people showed up to shower the mall and our sometimes still backwoods town in prayer.  Ron and I didn’t go as we’re banned, remember 😉 ? 

From what I understand, it was pretty uneventful but full of the presence of Christ. Belinda said everyone, including two of my children, prayed. 

Belinda also mentioned the sad and ironic fact that Southpark Mall has moved Spencer’s to a much more prominent area in the mall.  This is sad and ironic because now all the families that walk through the mall are able to view adult themed material without any hinderance to their view but we were banned from the mall for passing out gospel tracts.  My 10 year old daughter saw things that shouldn’t be allowed to be seen out in a supposed family friendly environment.  This is also the same mall that allows some of their tenants to display rude and sexually explicit tshirts in the middle of their concourse.  Also the same place that on occasion you have the joy of listening to unedited Snoop Dog when walking up to the mall (we were first hand purveyors of Senor Snoop and his F-bombs one morning).  Sad indeed.

Diana Penn has done a much better job that I could do in describing the walk and how even in this small way we can live out our faith in our communities. 

 Below is a note that Diana posted on Facebook this morning:

“I am moved to tears – not because of something I have done that I feel good about….not because maybe someone might have heard the Word of God tonight…..not because a handful of people showed up on a cold night to do something kind of strange….no, none of that.

I am moved to tears because I have done NOTHING for Christ that has cost me a thing.  Nothing.  Ever. 

Tonight, as my oldest son and I pushed my niece around the mall – we stopped and prayed at various stores.  Sure, I felt foolish, embarrassed, and strangely guilty and proud at the same time for my son who went with me.  After we walked once around the mall and prayed, we both commented on how we had run out of words to pray.  So, Isaiah 55:11 came to my mind – about the Word of God not returning void – so I decided to read the Word to him – out loud – as we walked.  I started in 1 Peter. 

As we walked and I read aloud, I felt stares, heard snickers, and felt a tinge of pain for my son who walked by my side – his crazy mom (at least how others probably viewed us).  My voice sounded weak and small in my own ears, but I kept on – pretending I didn’t hear the giggles, or feel the condemning stares.  I ignored the thoughts of wondering how my own brothers and sisters in Christ would view this as we walked, and I read aloud.  I tried to stifle the worry about how this might “appear” to the people in my church – what would they say?! 

Then I read 1 Peter 2:21 – For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you.  He is your example, and you must follow in his steps. 

I can’t tell you those words stopped me in my tracks – no, it was more like a planted seed that sprouted very quickly by the time I got home.  As we were leaving, I began to feel the same passion I felt when I heard about my brother’s plight of being banned.   

We are to follow Christ’s example!!!  Did Jesus quietly live a righteous life for others to “view”?  Did He go to church every Sunday – sitting in his pew, dropping a few dollars in the plate?  Did he put a bumper sticker on his car….sanctimoniously proving he was a “Christian”?  No – of course not!!  Those seem like extreme examples, and I know most of you have heard that before…..but it really struck me tonight…..Christ is our EXAMPLE!! 

Wow.  He lived out loud for us, for everyone…..have we done that…..lately….ever? 

I haven’t.  God….change me.”

Thanks be to God for the people in my life that are willing to live soldout for Christ.  May Christ be glorified in all that I do.

 

Check out On the Box, Living Waters’ new webshow that is designed to answer questions directly from folk out in the field spreading the gospel.  This is episode 2 that aired yesterday. 

If you listen all the way to end you’ll hear my name called as a big weiner (winner, in case you couldn’t catch on)!

Have a blessed Friday!

Kirk Cameron was on Anderson Cooper 360 the other night.  It seems that Anderson thought that since Kirk had been in the Left Behind movies that he would have some special insight into the end of times.

Notice how Kirk explains how the birds falling from the sky is probably a problem better suited for a vet than an actor, but how he quickly moves into how the more important issue is knowing that we are ready for what happens after death.

If you don’t know, Kirk is involved with Living Waters,the ministry behind the evangelism outreach program called The Way of the Master.  I would recommend that you watch this produce by Living Waters to see definitively if you ARE ready for what happens after death.

One of my favorite places to stop on the internets is An Eye For Redemption, a blog by Kansas Bob.  I was reading through some of his entries yesterday and came across a great post titled Blessed are the Meek.  In this entry, which I highly recommend you read, Bob alerts me to how Albert Barnes defined meekness.  Barnes said meekness is “patience in the reception of injuries”.

This definition comes from Barnes’ work, Barnes Notes on the New Testament.  I think this definition of meekness is the most accurate I’ve read.  Barnes goes on to write about meekness, “It is neither meanness, nor a surrender of our rights, nor cowardice; but it is the opposite of sudden agner, of malice, of long-harboured vengeance.”

Meekness is a quality that we should all strive for, with the help of the Holy Spirit.  Christ claims that the meek will inherit the Earth in His sermon on the mount in the Gospel of Matthew. 

What I like about Barnes’ definition of the meek is that it’s complete.  We are not to react negatively to those that harm us by harboring hatred or plotting vengance, but we’re not to lay down when we see a wrong being committed.  If you are serving in the name of Christ, good things are going to happen, however, in the process trials are guaranteed to come.  Pray for the spirit of meekness to be a part of your response to any injury that comes your way, especially an injury that comes as a result of the name of your Savior.