Tuesday, May 26, 2009

NEXT Thoughts

Memorial Day Weekend 2009 was spent in Baltimore, MD attending and exhibiting (for CBMW) at the NEXT Conference (Sovereign Grace Ministries). It was held at the Baltimore Convention Center just blocks away from the Inner Harbor (water, the Atlantic, I loved it!).
There are plenty of lives blogs on it and those folks do a much better job than me (find it by clicking on the NEXT in the above paragraph), so I am just putting down some thoughts from the weekend.
Funnest part of the weekend - hands down - was the drive to DC on Sunday night for the Memorial Day Concert at the Capitol. Cool time in our Nation's capitol, making me again proud to have men and women fighting for us and to live in a free country. The generations of men, especially from war eras, take this stuff seriously. You could see it when they stood up as their particular branch was mentioned. Very cool. And then on the way back, dying laughing to Brian Regan...so stinkin funny, then hunting for a place for dinner and ending up at the 7-11. You do what you gotta do!
Random - ok, down to some serious stuff.
I got the chance to exhibit for CBMW, my whole reason for going. I got the chance to speak to many young men and women about God's grand and perfect design for manhood and womanhood, founded in Creation, for the church, home, and family. Amazing stuff. I love this ministry!
I read a verse in my Bible reading on Friday: "Our God is in the heavens, He does all that He pleases. (Ps 115.3). This verse really was in my heart the entire weekend.
My friend Wendy couldn't come at the last minute, but I got to hang out with 3 great guys all weekend. I haven't laughed so much in what, ever? It was a blast. Genuinely great guys. Loved it. Missed Wendy though. And hanging out with other new friends from the seminary was fun too, sitting together at the sessions, texting, laughing, eating together, building community. Life together.
The first session I went to was D. A. Carson. I had never heard him, but was familiar with some of his books. He gave one of the best sermons on the Incarnation that I have ever heard. Here are some random things from his talk:
1. When we read John 3.16 the amazing things shouldnot be the vastness of God's love, but that God loved the world - and we were so evil.
2. Must have an understanding of lostness. The Light came to the darkness and it knew him not (his text was John 1.1-18). We can know little of the saving power of Christ without recognizing our total depravity. If we do not believe in the total depravity of man, then we will hardly grasp the infinitude of the power of Christ. If we weren't totally depraved, then we could have done something to earn our way to God. Not if we are totally lost.
3. Jesus himself is the meeting place between God and us - not be His incarnation but by His death. In His death, we see the glory of God.
CJ Mahaney spoke on the death of Christ. Mark 15-33-39 was his main passage:
1. We can't think on the death of Christ too often - Spurgeon
2. Don't let me become indifferent to the cross of Christ.
3. There was no alternative to the Cross. When Jesus cried out from the Cross to the Father - there was only silence, not a plan B.
***4. Death is God's way of limiting our arrogance.
Carolyn McCulley's breakout session - simple amazing! Breaks my heart for the 1200 young women in there and more so in the world who don't get this stuff. And thankful for all the ones who do. And points a spotlight on my sould where I don't live it. If you don't have her book - Radical Womanhood - get it.
1. Christian young women today may not know the names of the philosophers from the past of feminists, but they are definitely living in the wake of their thoughts.
2. Seed of feminism lies in all of us. Our enemy is not feminism, but spiritual power - Satan.
3. My worldview determines my solution to the problem.
4. Planned Parenthood is - at its core - anti-Jesus, anti-gospel. Justice can be had without having an explicit belief in the gospel of Jesus.
5. 1870 census started saying that the only productivity that mattered was the money brought home from outside the home (men's salaries). What this did to the breakdown of the SAHM worth is on its on - irrevocable.
Sinclair Ferguson - on the Resurrection - cool Scottish dude and no kilt.
1. No resurrection = No Gospel
2. The resurrection is staying with the faithfulness of God - His covenental, eternal, trustworthiness didn't stop and leave Jesus in the tomb - Jesus is alive!
3. We have a liturgist in the Heavens - a great High Priest! Love the song Before the Throne of God Above.
Then in my personal journaling time, many thoughts of which I won't be completely open about on here:
1. God's gracious compassion He has finally poured in to my heart for young women on the issues: being whole and satisfied in Christ, modesty, pursuing femininity, healthy bodies.
2. How my sense of rejection is so acute. When it happens to me - it bothers me so much. Even though I'm not an outwardly emotional person a lot of the time, rejection is the thing that hurts the most to me.
3. Biblical male leadership - how precious and incredible and cravable that is.

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