Saturday, April 19, 2014

Cancer Does Suck, But...

Over the years several close family members of mine have been stricken by cancer. This includes my American aunt and grandfather, Japanese grandparents, and my mother-in-law. I, of course, would never in a million years ever wish cancer on someone; however, I am thankful that canceramniotic band constriction, dementiadiabetes, multiple sclerosis, spina bifida, strokes, and other medical conditions my family members have battled can be opportunities to cling to the cross and witness to the goodness and hope found in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. May He be given all of the glory during the pain-free and painful times of our lives.

Noah Spivey from The Summit Church on Vimeo.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Difficult Days, A Divine Deliverer

I recently started my ninth reading of the longest book in the Good Book, the Book of Jeremiah. If you need to be reminded how easy you have it and how good God is, this is the book for you. I'm puzzled how I can forget how difficult Jeremiah's life was, yet it happens. Here are some eye-opening facts about the Prophet Jeremiah that can provide us the right perspective on life:
  • Jeremiah was told he couldn't marry or have children (Jeremiah 16:2), and he preached the truth with dogged determination for 40 years. 
  • The people desired Jeremiah's death and discarded God's message. 
  • Jeremiah felt depressed, discouraged, and deserted, and he really started to doubt God's plan for him.
  •  Although Jeremiah has much to say about death and destruction, we see that God is the deliverer of the good news. 
  • Jeremiah did not just weep, but he was dedicated, and it was God who helped him to go the distance.
I do not understand everything we have to go through, but I know God is good and He is there for us. Sometimes I get furious about the injustice in the world, heartbroken about the personal challenges family and friends are facing, and pessimistic about dilemmas I must help resolve. At times I complain and want to quit, but I know our Father's grace is sufficient. I must look to the cross and remember that Sunday is coming. I look forward to the day when you, me, and Jeremiah can talk about the greatness of God.

Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. Jeremiah 33:3

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Son of Man Raised

1. The Resurrection proves that the Son of Man is the omnipotent God victorious over sin and death. We can trust Him.
2. The Resurrection confirms that God's wrath was satisfied and our debt was paid in full. We are forgiven for our sins.
3. The Resurrection assures us that we serve a living Savior who continues to intercede for us. We are to be envied.
4. The Resurrection guarantees our future resurrection. We are alive.

Victorious. Washed. Prized. New. Let's make sure we are constantly sharing this good news of blessed hope.

12 Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. 15 We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, who he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. 19 If the Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied. 20 But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 1 Corinthians 15:12-20

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

From Principal to Teacher

In a couple of months, I will move across the hallway from my second office to my sixth classroom. Many of my present duties will change as I transition from a middle school principal to a classroom teacher. Although I am excited about the change, there is still much to be done in my present position. Below is some of what the next school year will look like which I'll give more thought to when the summer hits. I will go from...

1. assigning teachers to spring trip teams to chaperoning the sixth-grade spring to Liaoning Province.
2. emceeing major House events to sponsoring House 4 - a mixed group of more than 20 middle school boys and girls who meet once a week and compete against four other Houses.
3. presenting faculty devotionals several times a year to facilitating the middle school team devotionals.
4. providing advisory resources and schedules to advising a small group of sixth-grade students.
5. speaking at middle school assemblies on a monthly basis to emceeing the assemblies on a weekly basis.
6. visiting the cafeteria occasionally to serving lunch duty every Friday.
7. watching middle school athletic events to coaching the middle school girls' soccer squad.

Serving as a principal these past four years has blessed me in numerous ways, and I look forward to seeing what our Father will do in the coming months. I'm blessed to work with such a great team of teachers who understand the great responsibilities we have, and the great expectations that are placed on us.

Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. James 3:1