"I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands." - Psalm 143:5

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Jake Snare in “Jungle Fever”

  Jake Snare had never faced such a crisis before. He was standing before indiana_jones copya dark and dense jungle, with a woman and three small children and it made him  shake. Although familiar with adventure and danger, this was more than he had in mind and much more than he had bargained for. The jungle had many visible and unseen dangers; predators, poisonous animal and plants, and compounding the problem was the thickness of the jungle itself, it will be hard to find a way out. For a moment he thought; "Alone I could make it easier." But looking back into the eyes now focused on him, he knew that was no longer a choice.

Assessing the predicament, Jake thought: Dangerous yes, but keeping together will reduce the odds of getting injured or worse. No clear path, in fact no path at all! He would have to follow his training, what he already knew about the jungle that will help find their way out. Studying his small band, he realized their vulnerability. Knowing that they might not be able to keep up with him, he would need to set a pace in line with their strengths and abilities. To leave the jungle in one-piece it will take all of them working together. They would have to find provision on the way and as for weapons…there was no visible ones but with his knowledge and what he would learn on the way, it would be enough.

Now for the first step, that was the tough one, in what direction to place one's foot and lead. He remembered all the manuscripts he read and studied and knew in his heart he would have to trust their words. They were his only weapons, their only maps and their only hope.

My fictional hero is my attempt to paint a picture of what we as men face daily, maybe not as dramatic but equally real. The jungle we face is the world, with snares and dangers that challenge us daily. Many choose to go through alone, sometimes leaving a family to try to find its own way out. Thankfully, there are many who realize the privilege, honor and high calling of leading a family through the jungle of life. Watching, peering ahead for dangers and pitfalls. Identifying vulnerabilities in him and in his family, and searching for ways to strengthen all its members. Studying God's word, our map for our journey, for direction and insight into the ways of the jungle. Memorizing His words, our weapon against the enemy, and to speak life into our family, encouraging them to keep going. Living His word out in our lives, the hope we portray to our family, as an example of faith in God and His provision.

It is time to realize the potency of God's word and His plan for us as men. We are the "Last Adventure Hero" (sorry Arnie) for our family and although our lives may not involve exploding cars and spraying bullets, there are many dangers that would seek to "blow up" our security and "shoot" down our beliefs. Father God gives us gifts for His kingdom and that kingdom includes those entrusted to our care. I believe if we pour out our lives daily, lead lives of purity and walk uprightly for the sake of our family, we honor God's call on our lives. When people call me a "good father" or a "good husband", I try to remind them that I am still growing in those roles. That is why this is such a grand adventure! Everyday we have the opportunity to search and chart undiscovered areas in family life and leave a legacy rich in knowledge and love.

You are meant to lead your family, I am meant to lead mine, there is no excuse not to. Despite our weakness, "His grace is sufficient", despite our pride and selfish desires we are to "submit one to another" (yes, even those in our family). We are called to nothing less and "everything" more. God is committed to our families and when we align ourselves with Him, there is nothing that can stop us from becoming the leader they need us to be. Also, we need to align ourselves with men of like faith, who share similar beliefs and struggles. Encourage one another, be accountable with one another, and pray with and for one another. When the going gets tough...the tough should be praying, we often stand the tallest when we are praying for our families.

We have a map (the Word), we have a guide (the Holy Spirit), we have an example to follow (our Lord), and we have a constant source of provision (our Father, our God). As we cut through the jungle, we'll find more men like us, struggling but persevering through the dense undergrowth. We leave a path behind us, for our families and others to follow.

“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21

God Bless,

Jay

LiveJournal Tags: ,,

Friday, January 29, 2010

Faithfulness Fruit

  “His mouth is most sweet: yea, he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, and this is my friend, O daughters of Jerusalem.” Song of Solomon 5:16

“His words are kisses, his kisses words. Everything about him delights me, thrills me through and through! That's my lover, that's my man, dear Jerusalem sisters.” The Message Biblefaithfulness

I love that Scripture! Who wouldn’t love to hear his wife talk about him that way? Brothers, we need to “talk up” our marriage (and marriage in general). Speak well of its virtues, its power to complete and transform who we are. Making your marriage a priority displays faithfulness to your wife, your kids and anyone else who may be watching.

“Kindness and faithfulness keep a king safe, through kindness his throne is made secure.” Proverbs 20:28

That’s how we should secure our homes. Faithfully loving our brides like Christ loved the Church will keep our families safe and our marriages strong.

Peace,
Jay

LiveJournal Tags: ,

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Charismatics Version of: You Know You Drink Too Much Coffee When...

cup-coffee-256x256

1. You have to fight the urge to tithe to Starbucks.

2. You start to speak in tongues but only in a Columbian accent.

3. Coffee jingles start to replace your favorite worship tapes.

4. You mistake the coffee jitters for the anointing of the Holy Spirit.

5. You rebuke decaffeinated coffee because it’s of the devil.

6. After a pot of coffee the Charismatic Movement takes on a whole
new meaning for you.

7. You get slain in the spirit when the waitress says “More coffee hon?”

8. During a testimony you mention how Juan Valdez changed your life.

9. You tape your favorite TV Evangelist and watch it in fast forward.

10. You think after church coffee hours should last 40 days and 40 nights.

Blessings,
Jay Cookingham

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Patrick Henry Hughes - Inspirational Story

You know a long sermon is coming when…

sermon11

1. You’re asked to bring a covered dish to share during the sermon.

2. There are coffee pots on the communion table.

3. All the clocks in the sanctuary are missing and you’re asked to surrender 
    watches at the door.

4. The ushers hand out snacks and cold drinks during the sermon.

5. The sermon notes are carried in by seven ushers.

6. An ambulance crew is standing by.

7. The pastor is hooked up to an intravenous coffee line.

8. The ushers ask if you’ll need overnight accommodations and a wake up call.

9. Your kids ask if it’s still Sunday.

10. The bulletin announces that the longer the sermon goes the more frequent
      flier miles you’ll earn.

God Bless!
Jay

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Want a FREE Poster?

I designed this poster just for fun. Click on the link above for a free download…go on, you know you want to!king poster

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Review of Fearless: Imagine Your Life Without Fear by Max Lucado

Imagine a life without fear.

Free from the fear of natural disasters, job loss, sickness, rejection an_200_360_Book.72.coverd worrying about disappointing God, according to Max Lucado, we can.

We are living in fearful times, with many everyday challenges to our peace of mind. Max’ newest book "Fearless: Imagine Your Life Without Fear" is fifteen chapters of fear busting support. That support, for me, was in the form of reminders of God goodness, even in difficult situations.

Max capitalizes on his ability to tell a story to bring that point home; it is the reason he is one of my favorite authors. His pastoral touch weaves God’s compassion throughout each chapter of Fearless. I never feel I’m being “preached at” while reading the stories, life examples or Scriptures he uses. Instead, I feel encouraged and empowered to “war against fear” and run into God’s presence.

I was moved by the stories and how they touched base with my own struggles with fear. Those struggles need a healthy dose of reality or as Max says in Fearless, counterbalanced with long looks at God’s accomplishments. Those reminders of “good news” are just what we need to fight against fear. They build our faith and faith is the opposite to fear.

In chapter one, Max has this statement which seems so simple but to me is a powerful truth.

“Fear may fill or world, but it does not have to fill our hearts”

If Christ is filling our heart…there is no room for fear. In leading my family in their battles against fear, this book will be a valuable resource. It already has fostered many discussions in my home and I would highly recommend for your personal library.

Don’t let your hearts be troubled, trust in God, and trust also in me. John 14:1

Saturday, January 23, 2010

My Top Ten Fathering/Family Books

Gold top 10 winner

I have many books about fathers and family in my library. These are my favorites that I return to many times for encouragement. Do you have any favorites?

Point Man – Steve Farrar

Finishing Strong – Steve Farrar

King Me - Steve Farrar

Anchor Man - Steve Farrar

Seven Secrets of Effective Fathers – Ken Canfield

Growing a Spiritual Strong Family – Dennis & Barbara Rainy

Tender Warrior – Stu Weber

Infinite Impact – Stu Weber

At the Heart of Every Great Father – Clark Cothern

The Power of a Praying Husband – Stormie Omartian

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

YouTube - What Faith Can Do - Kutless

"What Faith Can Do - Kutless"



What Faith Can Do lyrics

Everybody falls sometimes
Gotta find the strength to rise
From the ashes and make a new beginning
Anyone can feel the ache
You think it’s more than you can take
But you are stronger, stronger than you know
Don’t you give up now
The sun will soon be shining
You gotta face the clouds
To find the silver lining

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

It doesn’t matter what you’ve heard
Impossible is not a word
It’s just a reason for someone not to try
Everybody’s scared to death
When they decide to take that step
Out on the water
It’ll be alright
Life is so much more
Than just what your eyes are seeing
You will find your way
If you keep believing

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

Overcome the odds
You do have a chance
(That’s what faith can do)
When the world says you can’t
It’ll tell you that you can!

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do
Even if you fall sometimes
You will have the strength to rise

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Jay's Marriage Proverbs

Just some humorous thoughts....enjoy!

1. That shall flirt with they wife continuously

2. That shall kiss thy husband all the days of his life

3. Sweet shall be your name calling lest thy be smitten by a broom

4. If you fighteth, forgiveth quickly for better will the makeup be

5. Forbade not thy hugging, for it leadeth to much pleasure

6. Snuggle tight often, for it is harder to fight that way

7. Loveth the wife of your youth or homeless you may be

Friday, January 8, 2010

Where Would Jesus Go?

“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15

Jesus went wherever people needed reconciliation and connection with Father God. In modern day context that faithcould be bars, clubs, strip joints, bingo halls, city hall, I guess just about anywhere. Speculation to Jesus’ visiting itinerary is great to debate and muse about but I'm sure we would all be surprised where He would turn up.

However, He does "turn up" where we go, the places we frequent, visit and live in. The Message we carry as we interact with those not yet journeying with Christ is fleshing out the Great Commission everyday. I have worked in the Bowery, taken in ex-cons, started ministries for orphans, help coach little league, soccer, prayed for and visited work associates in hospitals. What I have discovered is that relationships are one of the Father’s ways to reach the world He loves desperately…it is a risky and heroic action.

"Faith is the heroic effort of your life. You fling yourself in reckless confidence on God. God has ventured all in Jesus Christ to save us. Now he wants us to venture our all in a life that can face anything it has to face without wavering....Again and again, you will get up to what Jesus Christ wants, and every time, you turn back when it comes to that point until you abandon resolutely....Jesus Christ demands that you risk everything you hold by common sense--and leap into what He says....Christ demands of the man who trust Him the same reckless spirit....that is daring enough to step out of the crowd and bank his faith on the character of God."  - Oswald Chambers

Peace,
Jay