Great Sermon! Brother Burke, grace and peace to you, your family and the local assembly that you are ministering to! Today, I found myself struggling about my role as a single mother of a 12 year old young man. I have been battling growing weary as each challenge comes. I run from faith to doubt, questions to surrender discontentment to peace that God knows what He is doing, even if I don't. But today, I had lost my footing...I was beyond weary, beyond confused...I found myself lost, not knowing what to do, especially since I have been faithfully praying and seeking God only to find that my son is still rebellious (for now). After praying, I found this message...RARE message might I add, and I began to understand the truth that I am not forgotten and what my son's dealing with is not the end. God used your message to remind me that His great strength is made perfect in our weakness. I was encouraged to say the least and I praise God for your obedience, your honesty and your compassion for those like me and my son. May the Lord bless you beyond measure...Sincerely, A single mom, chosen by the Most High God!
Thank you! Pastor Burke, thank you for tackling this virtually untouched subject. Single parents tend to be treated as ‚Äúnot quite up to par‚ÄĚ at churches and it is disheartening at times. Single parents need support and encouragement in the church and not condemnation or condescension. I look forward to Part 2!
Travis, Thank you for your tone to me directly. I am not sure how prudent further dialogue would be. To post a blog like this shows that you are pretty steeped in your opinions. We definitely come from opposite sides of the spectrum. In my initial walk, I suppose I could have beat my war drum as you are now doing, depending on my experiences and those I interacted with denominationally. Calvin's system had its work in me. Luther showed me my error of perception concerning savings faith and the tormenting misconception I carried for many years.
I listened to your sermon. Saw some contradictions in what you were saying there and what this blog was doing. I live to discuss the things of our Lord. However, I have also experienced futility of effort in some dialogues. Not sure what category this one is in. In regards to the Proverb, why did you not see an 'at-a-boy' in the "...with the well advised is wisdom" rather than the indictment in the "By pride cometh only contention?" God may indeed be pricking your conscience. I pray He is. My email is JeffreyLahman@gmail.com The blog comment may not be the forum to continue our discussion. Email me if you would like to sharpen iron with me.
It is hard to prove a lack of pride without seeming prideful. Instead, I would ask you to listen to a message I recently preached to our church on "What's Our Motivation?" I think you will understand our heart.
Jeff, I appreciate you taking the time to read this. I will address your comments and prayerfully it will suffice. First concerning your statement "A funny thing about Proverbs - how the individual conscience aligns itself with the message it conveys. I noticed you aligned yourself with the pride portion and felt a need to defend your humble duty to defend God and His word. Could this perhaps be an inkling of conviction towards error within your conscience?" No, it was not a linking of conviction towards error... Let me please explain. I think we both know why you wrote that verse. I don't assume you went and wrote that 'verse of the day' on numerous blogs. It was meant to accuse. For illustration, let me assume you are married and you write an essay on how wonderful your wife is. Let's assume someone comments and writes "Thou Shalt not commit adultery." You are NOT an adulterer, the Spirit is NOT convicting you of that sin, but you will respond to that comment...thus have I (please note this was for illustration, I don't know you but I do NOT believe you are an adulterer). I don't believe you know me, but if you did I do believe you would feel assured that I have not put my self in a judges seat and pride in my stance is not the motivation.
A funny thing about Proverbs - how the individual conscience aligns itself with the message it conveys. I noticed you aligned yourself with the pride portion and felt a need to defend your humble duty to defend God and His word. Could this perhaps be an inkling of conviction towards error within your conscience? Obviously you've read much concerning the Reformers, but I can't help but think that you're proud of the duty you have done and are doing, taking the judges seat. I recognize the paradox in us all, for am I not doing the same thing in this dialogue? However, I think you're playing with fire in your condescending glance at the Reformers. I am saying this as a potential friend, hoping to prevent you from having to being jerked by a chain of correction by our Lord (like the dogs we are), removing our inherent fallen misdirected pride. Look deeper into what these men were saying. Your message indicates that you haven't yet understood.
If you are suggesting pride in my heart, you are mistaken. I am sorry you feel that way, as it was not my intention. I seek only to examine facts and expose false teaching, which is my Biblical duty. It is then each individual's duty to choose
Great Sermon! Every child of God should hear this message! Oh, that there were more men of God that preached the whole counsel of God in season and out of season like Brother Cloud. Pray for him that he will stay the course. There is rampant apostasy and spiritual famine in the land.