Theological Lessons from Horton the Elephant

I have recently come across a wonderful book and as the title would suggest it is about an elephant by the name of Horton. I had know about the book Horton Hears a Who, however I did not know about Horton Hatches the Egg. After a recent library trip that Beckie made with the kids they returned with a few books one of them being, Horton Hatches the Egg. Upon reading this to Natalee I realized just how profound a book it was.

The book talks about Horton being asked to sit on an egg because the mother bird was too lazy and wanted to go and play and do other things. Horton promises to do so no matter what. The line that rings though the entirety of the book is this “I meant what I said and I said what I meant, and an elephant’s faithful one hundred percent!”. Despite all that would provoke him to go he refused and endured ridicule and danger and storm just to hold true to his word. It got me thinking about Horton Hears a who as well where he defends what he knows is true despite the fact that no one believes him.

As Christians in our culture today it is amazing how often we are pushed to compromise or back down from teachings of the Bible or about giving up on things. Reading this book to Natalee made me think of Paul’s words through several of his letters calling us to persevere, to run the race, to finish strong. What an amazing opportunity to say to my own children that God calls us to do the same things in regards to our faith, to tell them that there are those who would ridicule and make fun of them because they do not believe the truth of scripture but that we are called to be faithful, to have integrity and to stand firm with Christ. How amazing would it be to have children that grow and say “though people will speak against me I will not back down God is my strength”? How amazing would it be for us as the Church of Christ to stand and say the same thing?

Maybe we need to take example from Horton and say “I said what i meant and I meant what I said I will stand with Christ who is faithful one hundred percent”.

Something to think about.

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Hello March!

We have some big news in the Keezer home:

If you can see, it says, "We're Prego" LOL

Yes, we are expecting our THIRD child! Can you believe that? I said to Chris, “This means we’re real grown-ups now!”

I am currently 8 weeks along (according to my calculations). So far I feel great, tired, but really good! No morning sickness with this baby. We are already praying that this is a sign that baby #3 will be different than our past two fussy-colicy newborns.

We are so thankful for how God has blessed us. His timing is perfect – in all things!

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
are the children of one’s youth. Psalm 127: 3-4

Monday Morning Commentary

A website that I frequent is the blog of Holly Furtick, wife of Pastor Steven Furtick of Elevation church (you can check it out yourself at http://www.hollyfurtick.com). Every Monday morning she posts a commentary on her husbands sermon. Once a month my husband, Chris, has the privilege of preaching God’s word to our church family. Yesterday was his Sunday to preach. So, today I will do my own “Monday Morning Commentary” on my husbands sermon.

I love to hear my husband preach! He really has been gifted by God in this area. If you know my husband well you know that he is fairly mellow in personality but if you put him behind a pulpit all of his passion comes out. He is so passionate to share the word of God with others!

Chris is very intense with his study of God’s word and has a lot packed into a twenty minute sermon. That being said, if my notes don’t make sense you’ll just have to come out to Summerside Baptist Church when Chris is preaching (the last Sunday of every month) and take your own notes 🙂

The Title of Chris’ message was “For the Honour”, with his key scripture verse being Romans 13:7. Sometimes we, as Christians, forget what honour is. My husband posed the question, what does it mean to honour? Some of the words Chris shared to describe honour were, to esteem; respect; defer to; revere; worship; or adore.
– We looked at Mark 10:18 and Romans 1:21. These scriptures show us that we are not worthy of honour, even if we think we are good. ONLY God is good.
– However, we are given a place of honour because of Jesus (Romans 3:23; Romans 5:8).
– We need to choose to honour God with our speech, actions and interactions with the world (through our marriages, work, sleep, money, time etc)
– God is passionate for His glory and our good
– All creation will recognize it’s creator if we don’t. We need to be at the forefront of giving honour to God. (Chris joked, “Don’t wait until the maple tree on your front lawn is clapping it’s hands and worshiping God.”)
– God seeks his honour – Isaiah 48:11 – because he alone is worthy of praise
– What you fail to honour will eventually leave your life. We need to remember to thank and honour God for our yesterdays to allow him to continue to work in our tomorrows.
– My husband shared the story of Moses and quoted Numbers 20:12. In this section of scripture God tells Moses he is not allowed to enter the Promised Land of the Israelites because he dishonoured God. Chris challenged us by asking, what opportunities has God placed in your life that may slip through your hands because we were dishonouring to God?
– Then my husband talked about obeying God’s commandments from the heart, using Isaiah 29:13 as his example scripture verse.
– My husband often uses the example that we tend to think of God like this, “I will obey SO THAT God will love me” rather we need to think; “God loves me! Because of this truth I choose to obey.”
– Chris finished the sermon by reading Malachi 1:6-2:2 (key verse being Mal 2:2) and challenged us by saying, “It is time that we claim who God is and give him the honour!”
– He closed with reading lyrics from the song “For the Honour” by the Elevation Worship band.

I want to encourage those that regularly attend church to bring along your Bible and a notebook. Being prepared to hear a word from God opens our hearts to receive a word from God!

Leading Well (How You Doing?)

For those you that frequent this blog you get a lot of information from my wife about daily adventures and things we are doing as a family (this last month withstanding as she is fasting from this stuff). So usually when I write something it tends to be a bit different and focuses more on what God is teaching me or things that I am working through in relationship with Him. And this post is no different.

Beckie and I have recently read through the Real Marriage book by Mark & Grace Driscoll, as well as watching the subsequent sermon series from Mars Hill Church based on the book. The things that always strikes me of course is what it means to lead my family. In absolute confession I would have to say I have been lousy at this. Though I know the importance of it and I know what my role should be within the home to shepherd my family and be the example of Christ I have not done a consistently good job at this.

Now there are some that may wonder what it is I mean by leading my family or leading my home. By this I mean that I am the one who takes on the responsibility for the spiritual and physical needs of my family and taking appropriate steps to make sure that these needs are met. That means that I am the example to my kids to demonstrate what it means to be tough and tender so that they understand mercy and discipline in a way that exemplifies the way their heavenly Father is towards them so they may see Him the perfect example and trust Him where I fail. This also means that I take responsibility for my wife and see that she is developing her relationship with God well and that she has love, security and service from me, so that once again I can be an earthly example of the one who loves her and serves her perfectly. My goal and purpose is to love her the way Christ loves the church and gave himself up for her. For a better picture than I can paint with my own words see Ephesians 5: 22-33.

The reality is that my kids do not regularly see me open the Bible in their presence and therefore they do not see me as having high regard for the word of God. This also means that they do not have me as their Father regularly pray over them and bring them before God’s throne of Grace.

Now I want to be clear that I am not in a funk or looking for reassurance of how I have been doing I am simply making observation that by God’s grace I need to do better, and admittedly I am incapable of doing so by myself. The reality I believe is that as a culture we as Christians do not take seriously, in large part, the importance of discipling in our homes. We tend to have a mentality that says that role should be filled by the church and if they don’t do it then they have failed but it isn’t our fault. I believe we need to remember that we have a significant frontline purposeful role as husbands and fathers that says I will be the one who takes the responsibility for these things and that if we are inadequate we need to avail ourselves of others around us to help us grow in the truth of God’s word and bring that into our homes for the edification, support, encouragement and building of our families. I believe it is time for us to stop pushing off responsibility and believe the lie of a culture that says men are dumb and incapable of figuring out their lives on their own and realize that we are strong and we fight for what is right and believe we have a God ordained role and responsibility in our homes to demonstrate and exemplify Christ.

I really appreciate that this issue has been at the forefront lately due to the movie Courageous coming out this last year, so for those that are familiar with that film you will understand what I am talking about. I have also appreciated the comment that says “the question isn’t whether or not men should be the head of their homes, they are the head of their homes. The question is how are they doing?”.

I don’t pretend to be an expert but as I stood this very morning and held my kids and prayed over them, and then held my wife and prayed over her that my spirit wept because this would not be the norm, it is the exception. That is not acceptable. By God’s Grace may the exception become the norm and may I exemplify Christ for His Glory and my good and the discipleship, encouragement, and edification of my family.