Before we can begin to see the cross as something done for us, we have to see it as something done by us.
Whoever drinks beer, he is quick to sleep; whoever sleeps long, does not sin; whoever does not sin, enters Heaven! Thus, let us drink beer!
Under the law, in Adam, one is trapped in the cycle of sin and death, resentment and despair, self-righteousness and self-condemnation. Yet under grace, in Christ, one is not only justified apart from the law but is able for the first time to respond to that law of love that calls from the deepest recesses of our being as covenantally constituted creatures. It is not the law itself that changes, but our relation to it, and that makes all the difference.
It’s not so much that the church has mission, but the mission has a church- Alan Hirsch - What Is A Missional Church? (by VergeNetwork)
A lot of people been asking me how I’m doing. I guess I haven’t been really good at keeping people in the loop as to what’s going on in the Burr family, but things have been good. I’ve been bubble free since February 13th (out of full time church ministry) and things have been hard/fun/rewarding/different/beautiful all at once.
First off ministry was in a lot of ways a bubble. I’ve always tried to pride myself on cultural relevance, but stepping out of the ministry world and into the jungle I began to notice that its full of lions and tigers and bears and often I was missing what the culture was thinking about. The world is rough and it’s eating people alive. Living in the bubble of church ministry I would stress about meetings, get mad about decisions made, and fret over budgets to make my event be the one that someone got saved at. All those things can be noble, but its not what anyone in the jungle cares about. They are worried about their money, relationships, where they live, their health and many other things, and so often As a pastor I missed this. And often I never dealt with the underlying issues of the heart; issues such as how they worship their money, kids, bosses, self and not Jesus. How people are looking for fulfillment in the wrong place besides Jesus.
These past 4 months have been revealing.
They also been fun. My wife and I have been able to let down our hair and enjoy each other and be normal people. We go out and get beer, wine, and we have a good time. We laugh together and we enjoy our kids, and our friends. In a lot of ways being in the bubble and not in the jungle we were so concerned with offending other Christians. We always lived under the banner of what will people think of this (we really didn’t but when others would bring up what we would do we would get in trouble). Now we look at our lives as free in the way the bible describes it. We listen to Holy Spirit and we live the way he calls us to. We aren’t tied down by rules and its caused us to be ourselves and enjoy life. We don’t regret leaving and we are really genuinely enjoying our life. I recently sat down with a church leader and told him about how we are happy where we are in life, and he proceeded to tell us that we were burnt out and that’s why we are happy doing what we are doing. I listen and didn’t defend myself and later took it God in prayer. After thinking about what he said I decided that I wasn’t burnt out of ministry just the politics of it. My wife and I are still doing ministry and we really enjoy what we do.
This season has been really different too. We are still doing ministry, but It looks different than anything we’ve ever done, and there really isn’t a model for what we are doing anywhere. This causes us to lean into the spirit and trust what he wants us to do. We work at our apartments and our ministry is through the relationships we build here. We also have a mtg weekly with a couple of us and we talk about the gospel and how its transforming us daily into the image of Christ. This is so different for us because I’m used to the show. As a matter of fact almost EVERY church leader I tell about this treats it like “oh that’s cute” and then proceed to ask me “when I’m going to plug into their church system.” This sometimes causes frustration, but all along I’m learning to trust what Holy Spirit has told us and keep moving forward. It’s so different when you’re used to people coming to hear a sermon to meeting a neighbor who wants nothing to do with another neighbor much less a Christian. This is fun and challenging and I would envy your prayers as I walk through this part of our new season.
This new season has also been hard. I currently work at Sbux and I actually enjoy my job. It doesn’t pay much (we don’t really need much because we cut our budget by $12,000 this year) but sometimes its so monotonous. I get to deal with difficult people, and my schedule keeps me away from my family which is hard. I spend most of my day working and thinking about what my kiddos are doing and missing my wife. I get home and I put them to bed shortly after and don’t get much time with my wife because she works early mornings. My dream for my family is to make enough money to where my wife stays home with the kids and I get home around 6 each night. Its not that season for us, and so we walk through it. We really make a point to enjoy the moments together and the days off are golden for us.
So you can see that life for us in the jungle has been a mix of things, but I don’t regret the season I’m in. In every season of life I realize that you’ll laugh, cry, enjoy, hate, but the main thing is to trust God. Thank you for reading and thank you all that pray for Erin and I
The last 2 years has given me more scars than I can count.
There is nothing that keeps wicked men at any one moment out of hell, but the mere pleasure of God.
Before I get started, let me share some facts
In a fresh study of “Bible engagement” released yesterday, LifeWay Research surveyed more than 2,900 Protestant churchgoers and found that while 90 percent “desire to please and honor Jesus in all I do,” only 19 percent personally read the Bible every day.
LifeWay also found that higher levels of Bible engagement were correlated to six actions:
1. Confessing wrongdoings to God and asking forgiveness.
2. Believing in Jesus Christ as the only way to heaven and the number of years one has believed this.
3. Making a decision to obey or follow God with an awareness that choosing to do so might be costly. (63% of churchgoers say they have at least once in the last six months.)
4. Praying for the spiritual status of people they know are not professing Christians.
5. Reading a book about increasing their spiritual growth. (61% of churchgoers say they have in the last year.)
6. Having been discipled or mentored one-on-one by a more spiritually mature Christian. (47% of churchgoers say they have been discipled or mentored.)
Okay that’s heavy! If I’m going to be honest I’m sadly in the 81% bracket! I’ve recently felt a tug from God to change this, and would love for you to join me.
There are 1189 chapters in the Bible, my goal is to read through the whole book 3x per year; this will take 10 chapters per day. You can split it old and new or go straight through, but the point is to feed on God’s word. Consider joining me on this journey!