Monday, March 30, 2009

Clutter-Free Christianity Blog Book Tour

Just from the title, the book held great possibilities, and having shared many sections of the book with others, nobody was disappointed or had negative reactions. That says a lot about any book.

We hear so often that it takes so much to be a Christian, the do's and don'ts, just--well, complicated. The Pharisees created 613 regulations that keeps man in a constant state of "I'll never be good enough for God." Jesus gave two great commandments: "Love the Lord your God, and Love your neighbors as yourself." How simple is that!

When did the Christian life become so complicated?

Your greatest desire is to please God, but with each passing week, your spiritual to-do list grows longer. As you strive to fulfill a never-ending inventory of requirements for being a godly parent, spouse, voter, employee, and more, you feel increasingly disconnected from the God you're trying to serve.

It's time to cut through the clutter and get to the heart of what it means to plese God. In this liberating look at the core principles of faith, Dr. Robert Jeffress reveals the truth about what God really wants from you--and what He wants to do for you.

Through solid biblical teaching and practical insights, Dr. Jeffress points you toward a revitalized faith centered on becoming more like Jesus in action, attitude, and affection. You'll learn how to partner with God in the process of spiritual transformation as you choose to follow Christ in forgiveness, obedience, trust, contentment, service, and prayer.

Through a renewed focus on experiencing the kingdom of God right now, you'll find your to-do list shrinking and your spiritual life deepening. It all comes with embracing Clutter-Free Christianity.

Another great feature of this easy to read book is the Bible study guide for personal growth and group discussion.

Author Bio

Dr. Robert Jeffress is the senior pastor of First Dallas and the Bible teacher on the internationally broadcast television program Pathway to Victory. A graduate of Dallas Theological Seminary and Southwest Baptist Theological SEminary, he has written sixteen previous books, including Outrageous Truth and When Forgiveness Doesn't Make Sense. Dr. Jeffree and his wife, Amy, are the parents of two adult daughters.

To Purchase this book:

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Updated: Constitutional Denial HR 1388

UPDATE 3/27/09:
After checking again with the government offices the bill does have the information in it but interestingly, when you call the White House information number and Senator Carolyn McCarthy's [D-NY] office, they have a different twist on the way most people have interpreted the bill. This is the way they state it.

This is not a camp in any way, but there will be three months service. The participants go to their home every night and are not allowed to serve [do their community service] in any house of worship, church, including the Salvation Army. This is a community volunteer agenda. It is much like the Pell Grants. There is some wording, however, that states there may be allowances for housing, uniforms, and food. That is a very broad stroke of the pen.

It does remind me however of when government started out with programs for people to get checked for STDs. Then it moved to youth can come without parental knowledge, and now it has turned into your parent has no rights to know your medical condition, girls can have abortions without parental knowledge. Planned Parenthood started out as a counseling center, and we know how it grew into the system it is today.

While the current law is being touted as just another form of community service to get kids to be civic minded, we the people should read the bill carefully. Some of the language lends itself to add-ons without another congressional vote.

By the way, the first link below is known by the Senator's office and states there are many errors in the link below for without going into specifics.

Some of my questions: if a soup kitchen is run by the Salvation Army or any other religious group, does that mean someone can't give community service? According to the Senator's office, No, they can't. In previous programs such as this current program, churches and other religious institutions were able to receive help from the volunteers--that is now cut out. Also no flyers to Pro-Life [assume Pro-choice as well], no protests, etc. The no going to church and worship would simply mean you can't go to church on your alloted time to volunteer such as a shift or schedule.

Hopefully this will answer some of the questions, and put to ease some of the more horrific conversations we have had on this HR 1388. But bear in mind, what the government starts with always sounds innocent and fluffy...but the outcome is very different from the origin.


Congress is moving at a very fast pace, and interestingly there is very little public outrage over a bill before Congress. It has already passed the House and on its way to the Senate for approval. We the people are being stripped of our Constitutional freedoms in HR 1388.

Below will be several links for you to look at and consider calling your senator or house representative and let them know your position on this very serious matter.

This is just one section of the bill, but note NO worship or service(s) in reverence to God will be "tolerated". NO religious instruction, NO facility to worship or receive instruction at the camps. But they will be indoctrinated in service to the state. In its current version, it is a willing participation, but this is not the end of the story. Read on ...

(7) Engaging in religious instruction, conducting worship services, providing instruction as part of a program that includes mandatory religious instruction or worship, constructing or operating facilities devoted to religious instruction or worship, maintaining facilities primarily or inherently devoted to religious instruction or worship, or engaging in any form of religious proselytization.

In its current version, this youth directive or camp is not mandatory. However, President Obama has made no secret of the fact that he desires and will make it mandatory that all people young, middle, and seniors will be required to do "mandatory volunteerism". On the second link below, is the Open Congress website, where the bill can be read in its entirety, as well as any amendments, charts as to voting, and those in congress that people are following in regard to this bill.

Americans are urged to take this seriously, it is believed that this is the test bill prior to mandatory regulations. If you value the Constitution, your religious freedoms, and authority over your children and family, you are urged to contact your Senator before this vote is taken. And then call your House Representative and let them know what you want them to do. Yes, this vote may have already been taken, but a more sinister and mandatory one is in the making. We have been forewarned in campaign speeches and recently that change is coming and not necessarily those that are family healthy.
This has full text of the bill ...

Would love to hear your comments and yes they are moderated so that profanity will not be posted.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived

Welcome to the Random House blog book tour for Steven K. Scott's new book, "The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived." Scott guides readers in a step-by-step application of the life-changing principles, skills, and methods that Jesus used throughout his earthly life. Although believers may spend a lifetime learning from Jesus' teachings, it's easy to overlook the powerful lessons demonstrated in His life. But when these incomparable lessons are learned and put to use, they enable ordinary people to achieve extraordinary success and happiness.

From Jesus' earthly life readers will learn:
  • How to break through the barriers that prevent them from achieving extraordinary success at work and relational success at home
  • How to experience a level of happiness and fulfillment that nothing the world offers can duplicate
  • How to use adversity and opposition as a springboard for greater success
  • How to love others in a way that increases their love as well

No matter what a person's area of expertise and in what setting a person influences others, living by the principles of Jesus' life on earth produces extraordinary success, unprecedented achievements, personal fulfillment, and blessings for others.

Author Bio:

Steven K. Scott is the best-selling author of The Richest Man Who Ever Lived, The Greatest Words Ever Spoken, and Mentored by a Millionaire. After failing in nine jobs, he started reading a chapter of Proverbs every day--and the wisdom of Scripture changed his life. Scott and his business partners have built more than a dozen multimillion-dollar companies from scratch, achieving billions of dollars in sales. He is the co-founder of Max International, Total Gym Fitness, and The American Telecast Corporation. He is a popular international speaker on the subjects of personal and professional achievement and the application of biblical wisdom to every area of life.

This makes a great gift to your friends, family and anyone that wants to know more about the lifestyle of Jesus.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Shack Author Denies Biblical Substitutionary Atonement

In a recent radio interview, The Shack author, Paul Young, told the interviewer he did not hold to the traditional view of the atonement in that he does not believe Jesus Christ bore the punishment (i.e., penalty) for man's sins when He died on the Cross (transcript).

He also stated, with regard to this topic: "I don't know if you're aware, but that's a huge debate that's going on in theology right now within the evangelical community." That debate, to which Young refers, is the new theology (or as we call it the new spirituality) that is entering Christianity through contemplative and emerging figures such as Brennan Manning, Brian McLaren, and Marcus Borg.

This "huge debate" states that a loving Father would never send His Son to a violent death on behalf of the sins of others. And while they do not deny that Jesus did physically die on a Cross, they insist that His death was not to be a substitutionary act wherein He was punished for our sins.

Rather, they say, He was killed by man, not for man. And he was a perfect model of sacrificial servanthood. As Episcopal new spirituality author, Alan Jones, states, "Jesus' sacrifice was to appease an angry God. Penal substitution was the name of this vile doctrine" (Reimagining Christianity, p. 168).

Contemplative proponent Brennan Manning, quoting Catholic mystic William Shannon, says: "[T]he god who exacts the last drop of blood from his Son so that his just anger, evoked by sin, may be appeased . . . does not exist" (Above All, pp. 58-59). Mystic Marcus Borg has this exact same view. He is opposes the doctrine of penal substitutionary atonement and sees the Cross as merely a metaphor for transformation in the mystical sense. 1 Brian McLaren shares this view (and indeed resonates with Borg) when he says that hell and the Cross are "false advertising for God." 2

The Shack, still at the top of the New York Times Best Seller list, is being heralded as one of the best Christian books ever. But as Lighthouse Trails and other concerned ministries have reported in a number of documented articles, The Shack is not a Christian book, and it should not be packaged, presented, and promoted as such.

While many who have read The Shack, tout that it has changed their lives, what these people do not understand is that the book appeals to people's senses; thus, the book is sensual. And because it makes people feel good, they assume (wrongly) that it must be from God. But The Shack is appealing to the carnal man and not the spiritual, and as the Bible warns, there is a "wisdom [that] descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish" (James 3: 15).

With this in mind, Lighthouse Trails has posted an article by free-lance writer, John Lanagan, who attended a large evangelical church meeting this past weekend in which The Shack author spoke. The church is presenting a series on The Shack and began the series by having Young address the congregation. It is not the intention of this report to single out this particular church but rather to warn believers of The Shack's interspiritual, panentheistic, and non-biblical theologies and the book's major impact on many many churches. Please click here to read this article.

We have also posted an article this week of a serious nature regarding the heightened involvement by Nazarene pastors worldwide with contemplative spirituality: "Nazarene General Assembly Welcomes Contemplative Spirituality--Nazarene Pastors Worldwide Invited."

In His grace,

Editors at Lighthouse Trails Research

Monday, March 16, 2009

Don't Let Me Go

Don't Let Me Go is one of the most delightful, inspiring, thought provoking books I have read in a while. The true story of a father and daughter team that conquerors many things, including a father's coming of age. The subtitle of the book tells the story: What my daughter taught me about the journey every parent must make".

A book within a book, David W. Pierce watches how his daughter maneuvers over and around obstacles, encouraging her dad to come along on the journey. What an awesome thought when your kids want you along for their journey. He takes the challenge and in the process gives the reader insights into his own youth, the pain he endured growing up, now wanting to make a real difference in his daughter's life.

Chera, David Pierce's fifteen-year old daughter reads a book about a wilderness adventure and announces that she wants to climb a mountain. What her father heard was his daughter is growing up and the games they used to play are no longer on the board. A few weeks later, they bought matching backpacks and the adventures began.

Over a three-year period they climbed five mountains and ran in two marathons. Together they suffered sore muscles, bitter cold, sprung knees, shin splints, and broken spirits. But they also reveled in blazing sunsets, glissaded on a glacier, and celebrated numberous civtories great and small. And in the process, they built an unshakable father-daughter bond that will stand the tests of time.

In Don't Let Me Go, David Piece--the husband of popular Christian comedienne Chonda Pierce--offers a down-to earth, funny-yet-serious book for parents with the same universal appeal as Bob Carlisle's heart-tugging song, "Butterfly Kisses," only with well-worn running shoes and an ice axe.

About the Author:

David W. Pierce is the coauthor of two children's books with his wife, and a memoir, Salvage. He has written ten short stories appearing in Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine and Ellery Queen's Mysttery Magazine. A professor of English at Middle Tennessee Sate University, he also teaches at Taylor University in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. David and Chonda and their family live in Tennessee.


Thursday, March 5, 2009


This morning on Twitter, @dcagle gave a link to a new cartoon for the change in the newspaper industry. After looking at it, letting it settle in my senses reminds me of another time in our history when people were really forced into a new way of life. Then the question arose within me, are we part of the change or trying to hold on to a past that is going to change anyway?

Think about when the colonists first came to America. There were no stores and shops like they were used to, no bakeries, no ... nothing. Started from scratch. America transformed into an industrial age, and then technology. History has recorded the bemoanings of people who said it wouldn't work. Well, some of us are old enough to remember booming industrial plants like the steel mills that have now rusted out and been torn down. Their time is over. Thousands of workers displaced, new training available but many just were unable for many reasons to grasp the new era.

We keep doing something until something no longer works. When products and venues change. Will I miss the local paper? Absolutely! It represents an era that I had gotten used to, could count and depend on.

We are in the age of greater information as the Bible so eloquently described--in the last days, information will multiply faster than man can comprehend. We are certainly seeing it. Even"Baby Boomers" have gotten on the Information Highway and now able to race along with the techies. Now I thank God for great software writers.

To all the political cartoonists, writers, journalists, editors, and many people who made the newspaper industry work; who gave us daily updates, got us thinking, and showed us the world even in back country USA--THANK YOU FOR A JOB WELL DONE!

Look for you in cyberspace, which apparently we all will be getting our daily dose of trivia, information, and even the local news. To those papers who still are on the stands, stay around, hopefully you'll stay around for a while longer.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Your Focus Is .....

Are you one of those ignited with the current situations--no matter what they may be. All we have to do is read the news, watch international clips, or talk with people through the Internet to understand that we do not live in a segregated world. The pain and struggles of one nation is no greater than another, in my humble opinion. And it takes all to succeed, some recover before others, but there is a common goal of survival.

I received an email from an associate that said their country was suffering much more than others in a particular area. It is difficult to find words to explain that when you are only focused on self, you miss the larger picture of a suffering world.

Governments of the world knew years ago that today would come. Actually, that the collapse of the international financial market would one day collapse but apparently were not prepared for the actual date and time. So why does the United States get accused of being the root cause of the world financial collapse?

We can, of course, point international fingers at the Bank of England, Central Banks, and the like, but the bottom line, America has put itself in the position of being the guardian of the world, the protector of all nations, the champion of the small countries. Now its like Goliath stubbed his toe and unable to fight right away. Or the hen hurt so the chicks have no place to hide under her wings.

These are world views but for those with a belief in God, there is not fear. With God all things are possible, and nothing too big. Our focus is in God, because of God, and through God. He rules, not man. But make no mistake about it--even the people of God can be taken into physical captivity because of the actions of the majority of the nation.

Never give up hope and desire. Never give up the freedom to think and believe.

Everything starts with one thought, one word, one step--make yours in the direction for success.