Boy Scout Troop 256 @ Camp Geronimo, Arizona 2004
“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.”
I pray you can rest “in” Christ as you meditate on this word from the Lord, “My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him” (Psalm 62:5).
Ok, I know what you’re thinking, ‘more slide shows from Dan.’ This past week I was talking to some friends about the scout troop we poured our life into. What precious memories! Our troop had a motto, “Taking boys and turning them into honorable men.” We all know the fall that the Boy Scouts of America has gone through and the changes that have taken place. In many cases, a severe departure common sense, ethical values and Biblical truth. So many of the young men today are more confused than ever. Many don’t know what it means to be a man. As we ponder this downward spiral, it breaks our heart.
In the 9 years as Scoutmaster of this troop, the adult leaders and I have numerous stories of how lives were changed, both with the boys and the men. Here is one where God touched one of the Scouts. On many of the outings and backpacking trips, in the late evening there were those times we could look up and see a plethora of stars, the whole sky was filled with them. There were those times we took advantage to talk to some of the boys about God and His Creation. The next morning, usually a Sunday, we would have a church and communion service that the boys planned and led. There was one in particular where the boys were discussing the 10 Commandments. The 5th Commandment as we know is, “Honor your Father and Mother.” After that service one of the boys came up to me and said, “Mr. Russell, how can I honor my Dad,…. you don’t know what he did to me.” [Note: about half of the boys in our troop were from single-parent homes]. His dad wasn’t in his life anymore, but we talked about God being 100% in control and that He gave you the dad you have, not to exemplify his behavior, but for a perfect purpose that He may reveal later. And….. if you are angry, bitter and hurt with the dad God gave you, your problem is not with your dad, but with God. The boy walked away without saying anything. Months later this same boy came up to me and said that for the first time “ever”…. he was praying for his dad. A huge burden had been lifted from this young man. Like Christ has done for us, this scout had forgiven his dad!
Let’s not forget what Paul said in the scriptures about proclaiming His truth:
“We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ. For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.”
I’ve been thinking about the eye. Mainly the human eye, but first I want to point you to a short 2 minute video of an Eagle that was released from the tallest building in the world, Burj Khalifa in Dubai (Over 1/2 mile tall – 160 stories). The test was for the Eagle with a camera strapped to its back to find its trainer on the ground 10 blocks from the bottom of the building. I believe it was done several years ago. Watch what happens
That is one crazy amazing video. Right?
I don’t have to tell any of you how amazing our eyes are. But here are just a “few” interesting facts:
- The human eye can detect 7 to 10 million colors
- Photoreceptor cells in our eyes can catch photons of light and send a signal to the brain which interprets what color it is and distinguishes various objects
- The retina of the human eye is made up of an average of 120 million rods and 6 million cones, each with their own neuron that carries messages to the brain (Birds have 10 times that number).
- In humans, basically all our eyes are the same, so all 7 billion of us and all humans in history must have descended from an original ancestral couple that had eyes like we all have now.
- All eyes have a lens made out of a transparent protein substance found nowhere else in the body
- There are 12 muscles on the outside that move the eyeball around in the socket, including one that uses a pulley mechanism to swivel the eye. Also the muscles surrounding your eyes are amazing. They “jitter” at the rate of 30-70 microscopic movements per second all day, every day. Without that, you couldn’t focus.
- You learned this one in school, the lens inverts all the images coming through so they hit your retina upside down. Your brain automatically turns them right-side up. This is yet another one that evolutionists cannot explain without giving you double-talk.
- Each eye has over 50 glands in the eye lids for secreting oil for lubricating the eyes. We also have tear ducts when something gets in the eyes or emotionally moved. Explain that one!
- Each human optic nerve contains between 770K – 1.7 million nerve fibers and then sends those impulses to the brain. Then, the most remarkable achievement of all is how the brain translates those impulses into “seeing” colors and then translating those colors into shapes and giving them meaning.
- Even Darwin, regarding natural selection said, “The eye to this day gives me a cold shudder………….I freely confess absurd in the highest degree possible.”
- I like this one: Even if one eye could evolve, how do you account for 2 eyes next to each other, perfectly connected and coordinated, working in harmony and connected to the brain to give us parallax vision and 3-dimensional mental images?
- An interesting fact is the fossil records only show eyes already developed, never a partial eye. There are no fossil records at all to support evolution of the eye!
The above information is good for the unbeliever that has a hunger to know. Don’t waste your time with the skeptic. Remember the old saying, “A person convinced against their will is of the same opinion still.” For the believer, these jaw-dropping facts are for us to stand in paralyzing awe of our Creator…….
“Praise the Lord!
How blessed is the man who fears the Lord,
Who greatly delights in His commandments” (Psalm 112:1)
Men: Take some time on these………… you don’t want to be accused of being “Stupid”
The Golden Rule and Stupid People – Red Book Day 106 & 107
The purpose of these devotionals is to help you think Biblically
Solomon said, “As a man thinks, so is he”
IN DISCIPLING PEOPLE, WHAT ARE THE PRIMARY VALUES WE SHOULD SEEK TO BUILD INTO THEIR LIVES?
Is it to help them develop a strong prayer life, or a disciplined pattern of Scripture memory? Or to be a faithful witness to the lost? Very possibly but…
Infinitely more basic is to help them form rock-rib convictions in three fundamental areas (I Cor. 13:13):
FAITH – Does your “disciple” believe God?
Does he demonstrate faith in God by a willingness to lay it on the line when the chips are down, even to the point of climbing into the fiery furnace (so to speak), as did Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego? (Daniel 3) Does your disciple authenticate his faith by demonstrating congruency of life between the secular and the spiritual? (Psa. 24:3,4)
“…Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him…The work of God is this: to believe in the One He has sent.” (Heb. 11:6; Jn. 6:29)
FAITH – Does your disciple have a “Pilgrim Mentality”?
Is his primary focus on the temporal or on the eternal? Does he, by his life demonstrate the fact that he understands the transitory nature of our earthly existence, and the importance of investing in the eternal?
“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth…looking for a country of their own…longing for a better country–a heavenly one…” (Heb. 11:13-16)
FAITH – Does your disciple live a life of selfless sacrifice?
Has he been so impacted by Christ’s love that he is compelled to live a life of loving service rather than selfish indulgence?
“For Christ’s love compels us…that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again.” (2 Cor. 5:14,15)
By the way, you and I both know that the way you build these qualities into the life of another is by modeling them first in your own life.
My prayer is that you are having a great week!
* (Original release date December 2nd, 1998)
It’s Far Too Easy Too Buy A Tiger
See attached PDF – Great article by Tim Challies. Here is a quote from the article:
“Welcoming a tiger into the home serves as an apt metaphor for welcoming a sin into the life…….. The sins we permit into our lives appear to be harmless when we first usher them in and we are easily convinced that we can contain them……… Once we have welcomed them in, it is just a matter of time before they grow big enough to turn on us, big enough to kill us, big enough to do what sins always do.”
Not All Great Bible Teachers Are Christians……. J.R. Miller (1840-1912)
Bible knowledge alone, does not make one a godly Christian. One might know all the great facts and doctrines of the Word of God, might be a profound Bible scholar and a wise theologian, and yet not be an advanced, or even a growing Christian. We are to learn to ‘live Christ’ as well as to know the truths about Christ.
Jesus in His teachings, makes a great deal of obedience, “You are My friends if you do what I command you.” (John 15:14). We are to learn to be patient, meek, gentle, compassionate. We are to learn to be humble, kind, unselfish, truthful, sincere. We enter Christ’s school to be trained in all the qualities which make up the true Christian life. Jesus is not only the teacher, His life is the textbook which we are to study!
We are to look to His life to learn just how to live, the kind of character we are to seek to have, and the meaning of the lessons which His words set for us. We are in the school of Christ to be trained in all Christian life and duty. The lessons which the Bible sets for us, we are to live out in common life.
For example, it is not enough to learn from the Beatitudes, that certain qualities are praised by the great Teacher; we are to get the Beatitudes into our own life as quickly and as perfectly as we can. Likewise for all the teachings of Christ, they are not for merely knowing, as one learns the fine sayings of favorite literary writers; they are for living! They are to become lamps to our feet and lights to our path, and to be wrought into the web of our character.
We are not to expect perfection in the school of Christ, but we have a right to expect an increasing knowledge of spiritual things, and also spiritual growth in all the qualities which belong to Christian character. We should become more patient, more loving, more unselfish, more like Christ!
“Whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.” 1 John 2:6