Friday, November 03, 2006

Fun Fun Fun till my daddy takes the Bobcat Away

We are having a workday at church tomorrow.  I rented a Bobcat Skid Steer Loader. 
I worked a couple hours on it tonite.
Push and pull dirt, dig holes, pretend I am someone.
OK, I'll be honest.  It's a baby Bobcat.  400 something.  I think I could pick it up and carry it.
But, I dug and pushed and pretended.
It was really fun.
I can't believe people do this for a living and actually get paid for it.
Where do I sign up?

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Every Breath You Take - a GIFT from God

This morning was a sudden death in our fellowship. A young woman, wife and mother of two at age 23 suddenly gone.
I have seen this several times in my 6 decades on earth. It's not just painful and wrenching, it's inexplicable. There is no why. There is no reason. It just is.
I tend not to get too theological at a time like this. It rehearses those things all of us know so well. There is nothing except the weeping and pain. Nothing that is except Jesus. And Jesus IS Enough. At the time it can seem trite and hackneyed to declare this truth.
But wait a little while: when the quiet is deafening, when the pain is tripled, when the pressure makes our insides want to scream in a wail of anger, Jesus is there. There in ways that passes any capacity to comprehend. There He is, close, intimate, surrounding, loving, and filled with compassion. Not abstract, not distant, not meaningless. He shows up in those times without answers but with assurance.
Somehow He takes all the pain and ripping in our lives and reweaves them into a new fabric we don't yet see. Our most horrible losses are somehow made not just passively acceptable, but infinitely understood thru an infinite God.
We must now rest in peace. She already is. As much as she is missed, she is whole and complete now. We will be too, someday. That is the blessed hope.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


I own this mask, I know how it fits, I try hard to avoid wearing it. I wear it more often than I wish I did.
Sometimes I catch myself ripping it from the faces of others without permission.

That is wrong.

Sometimes theres nothing behind there and it's not fair to just strip away all that's left of safety. Life without the mask is very scary for some people.

I will stop.


Can Zippy Govern?

Every dog has his day. Sometimes that dog looks like a squirrel.

We have here in sunny Illinois two of the worst possible gubernatorial candidates known to man or woman.

Rod “Graft” Blagojevich and Judy “Pay-me-off” Barr Topinka.

They are both part of the culture of corruption and mediocrity. I don’t plan to vote for either.

The local radio station dominant in our market did a call in poll the other day. They asked people to vote for one of 3 candidates for Gov, Rod or Judy OR Zippy the Squirrel. After a hundred or so phone in votes Zippy was ahead of both the other candidates with 80 votes. 20 were split between the other two. Now, the question is, can Zippy govern? Well he’s a squirrel. He has a bushy tail and likes nuts. That’s about the same as our two candidatures. Except Zippy is faster on his feet and can climb trees.

Now, I’m sure you understand I can’t vote for the Democrat. My head would explode. So, why am I so angry with Judy Barr T?

She’s a moderate on lots of things, Pro Choice, Taxes, Etc
She is not conservative as I would want in a governor
She is part of the “MY TURN” politics in IL where just surviving is enough to get the nomination

And, she was the driving force in bringing in Alan Keyes to run against Barak Obama for the seat Jack Ryan bailed out on. Keyes was an embarrassment, a good guy, perhaps a great leader someday, but for this purpose at that time it was designed to prove once and for all that a conservative can’t win in IL. I’m sorry I don’t buy it. I don’t think a moderate can win.

So, for that intentional slap in the face of all I hold dear I will vote Whitney, the green candidate.

I know that means Blago will win. I just want the party of Lincoln to come back home. A solid slap in the face will do them some good. OOOOO I needed that.

We had some pretty good conservative candidates but the machine wouldn’t let them in.

By the way, Judy Barr Topinka is running behind in the polls, 29 to 44 for Blago.

Couldn’t happen to a nicer person. I hope this is the last we have to hear about her and the politics of phony conservatism in IL. I’m sick of it all.

Vote Green for Gov.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Pastor Appreciation

I received some Pastor Appreciation notes this last month. I'm not a pastor. I am a minister of the Gospel of Christ. Called as Teacher-Prophet. Not Pastor.

So when one came addressed to "Reverend Redlin" I was amused and bemused.

On the other hand, I am going to ask the men to consider their BERUF (Calling, Vocation, Profession, Work) this weekend. Who do they really work for and what does that look like? I am called to work in the ministerial beruf here and now. I don't apologize or hang my head in false humility. It's a Beruf of God. We all have one. We must find it and walk it out. That's what I am believing will happen.

So, in the spirit of the appreciation, I say to all, thanks. I am privileged to be called to this Beruf in your midst of furthering the Kingdom of God in our lives.

Sometimes that is not easy. Sometimes it is in fact painful. One note came from a man with whom I had earlier had strong "Words" with. He is a man of God and knows that when it comes to kingdom things our egos have no place. Even when we get frank and practical with each other we can step out of ourselves and come up higher. That's the gift of Agape.

Thanks from the Rev....

Monday, October 30, 2006

One of a kind

WIth a Tip of the Hat to Eric, I discovered I'm one of a kind. You can find out if you are alone in the universe or not. Son Kevin is one of 3. Not very creative of me is it?
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Net Results

When I was a younger man, (much younger) I worked for a cantankerous old fellow for about 8 years. Clair Hudson. He’s now long since gone. Much of what I learned in life I learned from him. Not all of it was good but some was.

One thing he constantly hammered me with was the need for net results in whatever was done.

Trying hard, even working hard didn’t hold much water with him. He used to say to me, “Redlin, steers try, but all it does is wear them out and annoy the cows”. Nothing happens. No net results.

That has molded me to be less tolerant of half-hearted attempts (trying) without an eye on net results.

Of course, everyone must have the chance to make it work, they must have the chance to carry the ball; but at some point if nothing is happening or if it even gets worse then the tolerance for TRYING must end. Net results must rule the day.

I watched the Bears beat the 49rs yesterday. It would have been a better game if the 49rs had shown up. They didn’t. The coach left a weak team on the field too long. There was a critical time before the end of the first half where he should have pulled the trigger and changed out a few key players. Even for a while. The steers were getting tired.

I watched the Cardinals beat the Tigers. The Tigers were a better team but the Cardinals were hungry for net results and did whatever it took to get them.

This all comes up because I am in a very serious business transaction right now. One of the management parties is messing around and won’t make the modifications needed to get the deal done. He insists on doing things his way. I spoke with him this morning. Without making the one major change that the market requires things are going to go downhill further. He is a bullhead.

I’m constantly amazed when things are collapsing all around a man in a key position he will stick to a failing strategy because it’s all he knows how to do. He won’t allow others to speak into his life and help him find a winning way. Hubris it’s called. “I know better, I’ve had lots of experience that allowed us to do this at a former company.” It’s not his fault. “The customers just don’t get it, they will if we just stay on course”. “Or maybe we need to find a new customer base”. Never mind that the customer base in his own back yard is rejecting his marketing program. He announced to me that he wants to sell in zone’s 7 and 8. Not 4 and 5 where he lives today.

Except they won’t buy the program no matter the zone. He has failed. The company will fail unless the board of Directors takes action and extracts him from his position. Just like the 49rs should have done. Like the Tigers should have done. It’s not that he isn’t trying. He works harder than any single man I know. He’s at the office before 6AM every day and there well past 7 in the evening.

It’s just that trying harder doing the wrong things gets the same. No net results. Not wrong results, no NET results. Failure.


Tired steers and irritated cows.

PS: closed circuit, this isn’t about you Jeff

There's Gold in them thar Hills

I know it torments some who write me and say don't do this, Don't post someone elses writing. But, I have a friend, a brother, a fellow servent of God in Nigeria. I shared something very personal with him and while he may not know he did, the Holy Spirit gave him the incentive to send out this regarding what true GOLD looks like when God places it in us.

Read the whole thing, it will encourage you as it did me. He's a good brother and you would do well to hear what the Spirit is saying thru him.


Here is an ode to achievers in God's kingdom.....READ and be blessed through the power of the Holy Ghost.

This poem is SPECIALLY dedicated to everyone who has been endowed with a gift from God and is longing to make a mark on earth. Your gift shall not perish with you in Jesus' name!



Stolen virtues are difficult to apprehend

Errors of photocopy, so hard to amend

The weakness of the weakling worries a lot

But the virtuous ones will stand aloft

Provided you keep to that in you, given by God

You'd surely not live as a shadow of others

A 'copy-cat' is never a delight-some land

He is a novice in the school of perfect reality

He'd never go beyond the best counterfeit

But there's GOLD in you, a reality to follow

Let it be expressed and not suppressed on earth!

Neither shall you be repressed nor depressed in heart

Behold the GOLD in you, as sure as life

Be bold to take your place without a strife

Among the best in a world of test

True virtues may not be so appreciated

But of a truth, they will ever appreciate

Time will tell, the difference will show

'There's some GOLD in you', crieth the Spirit

But the lazy and the hazy can never dig for it

Did, dig, dig and dig again for the reality

GOLDEN virtue, hidden virtue in you created

Let it not die, quench not the Spirit

Yea, a spirit in man, the inspiration of the Almighty

Do not rot-off as a runt, but run to obtain

All that the King did call you to attain

Even the precious jewels made by the Maker

Cannot be imported, hardly can be imitated

Robbers cannot see it, they cannot steal it

But only you can find it or neglect it forever

Your hour doth surely come, let thy GOLD glow!

Stay tuned to your destiny, sell not your birth-right

Recover the precious gem in you with candor

You must reign in life through Him, the risen LORD

Rule thou with iron-rod in the midst of thine enemies

For CHRIST in you the King must reign

(Healing unto the Nations)
G.P.O BOX 12440, IBADAN 200001, NIGERIA
E-mail: Website:
TEL: +2348023387552, +2348032206092

Justice versus Mercy

I am not conflicted by the spiritual and temperamental makeup I carry. I am conflicted by those who seem to imply that I should be different. Somehow I am less a Christian (in their eyes) because I have certain gifting.

I received a clear picture of how I approach the world and how it looks much like my political leanings as well.

To understand Justice versus Mercy you need to see the picture I saw:

There is a cliff, a high cliff overlooking sharp craggy rocks. People are coming to the edge of the cliff. Some are jumping off, some are being pushed off, some are wandering off, some are blind and can’t see they are being led off to oblivion and a few see the edge and step back.

Below the cliff are the broken and wounded people who have fallen from the cliff. They are in pain, some have died, and they need help.

Those who are mercy driven (I thank God they exist) will be drawn to bind up the wounds of those who are falling from the cliff.

Those who are justice driven will run to the edge of the cliff and yell STOP! They will put up a fence and try to dissuade people from getting too close to the edge. They will do all they can to make the wrong thinking, wrong action and wrong directions from causing people to fall from the edge of the cliff.

That is what a Justice motivation does. Fixing causes not results.

In that scenario I know where I will be. I want to hammer on the injustice that causes people to fall. I’m not nearly as motivated to try to help those who already have fallen. Frankly it’s less rewarding emotionally to work in justice rather than in mercy. Those that already fell know they need help. They are thankful for your mercy.

Those just wandering on the edge of the cliff will treat you with disdain and contempt. I’m OK with that. I don’t want them falling off the edge. I want to build a fence or persuade them to step back. I care that they are safe and secure.

That is the prophetic motivation. I want people to see the cliff, see the people at the bottom, and help them step back.

This has to do with my ministry, my giving, and my efforts. I met a couple who take street kids in Kenya who might become armed and dangerous rebels and teach them to become rebels for Jesus, saving souls, doing good, healing all that are oppressed of the devil. They are making a difference in a nation.

Or a man named Jamison from India that I met. Teaching Men and Women who God has chosen to lead the nation back from the brink of paganism.

Or a Church that intentionally makes a move to take back a region for Jesus, healing families, reprioritizing values, and releasing these same people into the work of the ministry.

I am not too interested in helping poor people who have decided to be poor and live off the goodness of others. I have worked in our local homeless shelter enough to know much of what goes on there is ennablement. I’ll leave that kind of thing to those who are mercy driven.

Even feeding the poor in other countries without doing what the couple in Kenya is doing is just making fat lost people. Show me what you are doing to resolve the situation and I’ll get behind you. Showing me you feed 10,000 kids a day doesn’t move me. Don’t just get them up, get them out!

So, don’t try to sign me up for your mercy mission. Not interested. DO sign me up to help stop the injustice that causes your mercy mission to exist. I sometimes think the motivation of some in mercy missions mean that IF somehow all people under their care were made whole they would be out of a job. I know that’s cynical but I’ve seen things.

I want to work on fixing the causes and not putting a Band-Aid on the symptoms and negative results.

My politics are the same way. That’s no surprise. I’yam who I’yam and I’m not gonna takes it no more. I don’t want to fix the results of bad policy; I want to fix the situations that created or aggravated the negative results.

That’s why I’m a conservative.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Generational Divides

In the last couple days I have been in two fairly large conferences.

One was Crystal Lake IL put on by Ben Peters. Throne Room Christian Conference. There were perhaps 300 people in attendance. What was most interesting was the age diversity. It was almost half and half split. Half of the people were 45 and up, the other half was 25 and younger.

It struck me that there is a whole generation of 25-45 year old people missing.

Then I was at an investment conference (Yes, I admit, I still like the idea of making money). There were perhaps 500 people there. Nearly all of them were in the ages between 25-45 years old.

Now, I suppose one could make all kinds of assumptions about what that all means. The young people were too busy being young to thing about making money so they were at the conference, and the old people were past. Those at the investment conference were too busy at business to bother with a Christian conference.

I think it may be something else. Think of who was raised and who raised those 25-45 year old kids. Post war people, baby boomers, get all the gusto you can. We, I sent the wrong message to my kids. Fortunately for the most part they ignored me.

I have great confidence and hope in this generation coming up; The half that were at the Throne Room conference and not at the investment conference. Maybe there is a move back toward righteousness. I hope so.

By the way, the band that played at the throne room conference was about 10 people strong, no one over 30, not highly skilled, but highly sold out to Jesus. It truly was a joyful noise unto the Lord. I’ll take anointing over skill any day.