It is a Prayer

A Lukewarm coffee sits beside my computer in the bagel shop.

Cars pass by the window, driven by people I only glimpse.

A smell of burnt toast wafts through the air.

A running man passes the shop window.

There’s a quick bang of a pan or two behind me in the kitchen.

A customer in nursing attire stirs creamer into her coffee at the counter. She has a black headband.

The coffee equipment is making an electrical, rattling noise.

An elderly couple graze over their food. They have careful hair; she with thick make up, and him with a shirt buttoned to his neck.

The workers are bantering at the end of their shift.

I have a message and a mandate of which to tell them.  Where do I begin?

It is a prayer.

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Letter to Tim Tebow

Dear Tim,

Okay – just between you and me, I don’t know if you need to kneel after every touchdown, good play, or completed pass as a football player.  I don’t know how many times is “correct” to mention our Savior’s name in an interview.  I also can’t tell you how often to quote Scripture in an article.  So I’m not going to tell you to do it more, or that you’re doing it too much.

However, I do know one thing.  The world’s answer to those questions will ALWAYS be to do it less.  They will always say, “We are tired of this Jesus stuff.”  The media will ALWAYS find a well-known Christian to help you see how you’re testifying too much about Christ.  Thus, with that in mind – keep on doing what you’re doing. 

Remember that Jesus promised one thing when you represent him – opposition.  He promised persecution, push-back, and ridicule.  I’m sure you feel you’ve experienced all of that at this point.  So just remember, if you are dealing with this, you must be doing something right.  I haven’t seen you do anything “crazy”.  So take it from someone who has done crazy things for the Lord – you’re not doing anything that is out of line.

Remember what happened to Peter and John in Acts, Chapter four.  They were, “commanded not to speak at all or teach in the name of Jesus.”  Sound familiar?  Their response was, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than God, you judge.  For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.”  Who can shut up about Jesus considering the great love he has and sacrifice he made for humanity.  You can’t! (That’s you Tim!) and neither can anyone who has truly grasped the importance of knowing Christ.

I also don’t see Paul anywhere telling Christ followers to be a little less bold about witnessing.  Can you really imagine Paul saying, “Preach the cross – sometimes!”; or “Just live a good life, and you don’t really need to mention the name of Jesus.”  That is laughable.  Unfortunately, that’s what your friend Kurt Warner is telling you, “Just tone it down, and live the life.”  Fortunately, those things don’t have to be mutually exclusive.  You can live the life AND say the Name.

Hang tough Tim – keep representing Him in your locker room, on the field of battle, and in the interviews.  Let the naysayers comment what they will; but our example in the Word is to lift high the name of Jesus.

Your Friend and Fan,  Shawn

Letter to KC Star (promoting abortion on the FYI page)

Isn’t the FYI page supposed to be about human interest items?  In a recent issue of the Kansas City Star the front page of the FYI section highlighted a local employee for Planned Parenthood.  My issue isn’t with her as my letter shows below, but the fact that the Star’s management seems to be using the FYI page to promote thier pro-abortion views – in my opinion.  What do you think?

Here’s the article…

http://www.kansascity.com/238/story/1202418.html

Here’s my letter…

May 23, 2009

Letters

The Kansas City Star

1729 Grand Blvd.

Kansas City, MO 64108

 

To the editorial board,

I am perplexed.  Why was the local Planned Parenthood public relations and media coordinator highlighted on the FYI front page recently? I am sure that Miss Phillips is an interesting and nice enough person.  However, it appears this section of the paper is reserved for human interest stories about random, local people. It’s surprising that this random person happened to be a Planned Parenthood employee during the week that the abortion/prolife issue was in the news because our President was scheduled to speak at Notre Dame. Perhaps the next person highlighted in this section could be one of the faithful employees of Rachel House an organization which serves several thousand young women each year with counseling, new baby supplies, and medical assistance.  The only difference between these organizations is that Rachel House protects life at all stages including the preborn.

Sincerely,

 

Shawn Barr

Adult Ministries Pastor

Antioch Bible Baptist Church

President Elect Obama Talks With Jesus

obamajesusoncar

 

Dear God, Thank you for the opportunity to lead this great nation.

You’re welcome.

Whoa – you answered.  That’s new.

Yes, I thought you could use some more direct communication from me over the next few years.

Wow – I’m talking with God.

You were before also. 

Uh,….good point.

Now – how can I help you?

What advice do you have regarding my new assignment?

Protect life.

Oh…abortion; I thought you might have an opinion on that.

I said life; you brought up abortion.   Forget about abortion for the moment.

Okay, you’re the boss.  I mean, um, er, … you’re God.

Back to the life question – shouldn’t the president protect life?

That would seem to be a part of the job…

You don’t sound convinced.

I’m responding carefully.

Very wise. Consider the constitution…“We the people…”  – that’s about life

Makes sense.

“A more perfect Union…”  – that’s about life

Really?

Well, a union of what? States – people live in states – people are living.  It’s about life.

Good point.

Thanks.

“Justice…” – that’s about life.

“Domestic Tranquility…”  – life.

“Common defense…”  – protecting life.

Yes, yes, and yes.

“General welfare…” – life.

Okay.

“Blessings of Liberty…” – for who? Living people – life again.

I’ve never thought of the Constitution that way.

You’re whole job is about life; so is the job of the Legislature and Courts.

Well, when you put it that way, I agree.

Good.  By the way, abortion ends a life.

I thought we might get back to that.

You were right.

What about a woman’s right to choose. 

Complete fiction.

How so?

Read my book, the Bible, and report back to me where you find this concept?

Let me put it on my list.  I’m pretty busy right now.

What about an unwanted pregnancy?

Unwanted by who? Who said I didn’t want it?

What about rape?

What a terrible crime.  There’s a special place in hell reserved for rapists.

So we have an exception.

No.  Simple answer – two wrongs don’t make a right. No matter how difficult this situation is.

What about babies with deformities?

I have a reason for everything and you said the key word, “babies.”

Shouldn’t the parents have some choice in this?

In what?

Whether the baby should come into this earth or not?  I mean a deformed baby.  What kind of a life will it have?

She will have a life, no matter how short.

But isn’t quality important?

Quality according to who? Everyone on this planet has some differing level of “quality of life.” Consider for example the wealthy Swiss banker compared to a black child in the slums of Nairobi.  Should that child be deprived of life because of an arbitrary standard of quality?  Should I allow that child be snuffed because of his economic conditions?

Abortion and infanticide – that’s a little different.

Not according to me.

I understand all the issues, difficulties, crimes related to difficult pregnancies, etc.  There are some truly difficult situations that are hard to understand and deal with.  However, my solution is not to end a life; but to be there, through my children, in these situations.  If a person will come to Me, I am able to provide help, direction and purpose even in difficult circumstances.  I love the mother, father, and baby more than anyone can imagine.

What about if the mother’s life is in danger?

Sin has made every pregnancy dangerous.

What about…

What if, what about, coulda, woulda, shoulda…

What about what I want?  You know – Me! God! :

·         The Maker of heaven and earth.

·         The Giver of life in the first place.

·         The One who breathed life into Adam.

·         The One who came to earth as a baby.

·         The One who died on the cross for all mankind.

·         The One who rose from the dead.

·         The Giver of eternal life.

Life was my idea.  Does anyone care what I want?

Sir, God – I really do care what you think.

Then read my book about this topic.  Read it in its context.  Read it for yourself. Don’t make it say something it doesn’t – like many others do.  And when you’ve come to what I want, adopt the right position and stand firm.  By the way, it’s not the position you currently have.

Many of my voters don’t like your position.

I love them anyway – but they are wrong.

I ran on a platform supporting the right to choose.

A change to the right position is never wrong.

Sigh.  This would be difficult.

Keep coming back, I’ll give you courage.

There are so many issues at the moment: the economy, Iraq, the war on terror, education, the inauguration, transition plans, staff selection, immigration, and on and on.

The protection of the most innocent person imaginable takes priority to all other issues.

I inspired another leader to say it best, “For you formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works and that my soul knows very well. ” (Psalm 139:13-14)

This would be tough.

More than you can ever imagine.  But it would be right.

My constituents won’t like it.

But I would and that’s what matters.

 

(Fyi – I believe God’s sovereignty has led to President-Elect Obama being our next president.  Although I disagree with him on this issue, I am praying for him.  He has a very difficult road ahead and I’m supporting my president as he prepares for office to tackle the enormous responsibilities before him.  I think it is historic in a very positive way that we have elected a black president.  It reflects the true opportunity in this great country in which we live. The picture at the top of this article was snapped as I was driving around Kansas City one day.  It was intriguing and prompted me to write this article.)

 

 

Best Pray of the Game

The game ended with a few desperation plays.  A long pass was thrown for a touchdown by Belton.  They also had scored one time previously in the second half.  Oak Park had some great passing and running plays.  But in the end Oak Park prevailed after leading all of the game.

The best play came at the end.

The majority of both teams met at the center of the field.  It appeared to be a meeting of opponents to say the typical, “good game.”  However, once there they dropped to their knees.  One of the players stayed standing and prayed.

Here were two teams that had just toughed it out for 4 quarters.  They each had penalties called on each other.  I’m sure there were times it got heated and words were said.  I’m sure I saw a couple of late hits.  But in the end they were able to put those things aside and pray to God with each other.

It was spine chilling to watch.

There’s something right going on in America.

(Game was September 5, 2008.  OP 30, Belton 12)

(Credit to Carolyn Hewitt for the pictures)

A Night With 10,000 Girls

  concert.jpg

My ears may never be the same.  I took my daughter to the Jonas Brother’s concert tonight.  It’s hard to describe the noise level that 10,000 adolescent girl’s voices can make. I told the guy sitting beside me that my voice wasn’t high enough to come to this concert.  We were just two of the Dads who had brought their daughters and felt a little out of place.  Just a little – like Barak Obama at the Clinton’s dinner table.

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