Healthy church?

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What does the phrase “a healthy church” mean?

I’ve been told a church is “healthy.” What does that mean? A quick google search & five minutes later I find out that this church is $ 12,000 in the hole, has two services with less than 50 in each, and has discussed closing or merging with another nearby congregation. They are also without a pastor and expect the new one to continue traditional duties to be performed such as visiting shut-ins and existing members, attending committee meetings and building centered activities while developing vision and growth. I’m also sure attracting young people is an unspoken expectation.

How is this healthy? Because it has a nice but ageing building? Because it pays its denominational dues? It sounds more like a declining church trying to decide about hospice care. Efforts to rectify such a situation are like pumping air into a leaky tire – it lasts for a while.  At a minimum, a healthy church preaches the gospel, is filled with the Holy Spirit & makes followers of Jesus. Too many churches, trying to keep up the real estate and the budget and the doors open,  fall short.


Every once in a while, CBD has books for sale that are  “slightly imperfect” – I find the juxtaposition of title and description rather amusing. Consider the following titles on sale:

“Missing the Mark: Sin and Its Consequences in Biblical -Damaged Theology” (Damaged)  

– Double the damage. A good way to look at sin.

“Luther’s World of Thought” (slightly imperfect)

– No debate. Never fully agreed with Luther 100%.

“The Church: The Gospel Made Visible” (Slightly Imperfect)

Haven’t found the perfect church yet, don’t expect to, not on this planet  or in this lifetime.

“Why I Am Not an Arminian” (Slightly Imperfect)

– Depends on your view of Romans 7.  Never been a perfectionist myself.

You can find more imperfection at CBD

Dept. of Justice-Just For Some

In regards to the Dallas police murders, Attorney General Loretta Lynch stated to protesters “Do not be discouraged by those who would use your lawful actions as cover for their heinous violence. We will continue to safeguard your constitutional rights and to work with you in the difficult mission of building a better nation and a brighter future.”

That’s not what she said in regards a few months ago in regards to critics of Islamic terror-

“Now obviously this is a country that is based on free speech,” she said. “but when it edges towards violence, when we see the potential for someone lifting that mantle of anti-Muslim rhetoric or, as we saw after 9/11, violence against individuals… when we see that, we will take action…I think it’s important that as we again talk about the importance of free speech we make it clear that actions predicated on violent talk are not America. They are not who we are, they are not what we do, and they will be prosecuted.”

So “Black Lives Matter” followers who tweet “kill them all” can advocate violence and be protected by the Justice Department but anyone who connects the dots between jihad and terror will lose their constitutional rights?

Latest from the Justice-Just for Us- Dept.


“To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions.”

Justice is blind – unless your husband hangs out with the Attorney General, the Prez is your pal and you’re the Democratic nominee for president.

Provolone Pilfering Proliferates in Pueblo!


Maybe you’ve read the book “Who Moved My Cheese?” Here’s a real life case:

Pueblo police are on the lookout for a provolone cheese poacher after close to $2,000 worth of the Italian cheese that is used as an ingredient to make pizza was reportedly stolen from the “Do Drop Inn,” 1201 S. Santa Fe Ave., over night Tuesday. Nineteen cases of provolone cheese worth approximately $1,900 were stolen. Only cheese was taken, nothing else. The owner said this isn’t the first time cases of provolone cheese have been stolen from the restaurant recently. “This is the third or fourth time they’ve been here in the last month and a half.” About 30 cases of cheese worth around $3,000 have been stolen from the restaurant in that time frame. During Tuesday’s theft, the suspect said “cheese” for security cameras that were recently installed.

Rumor is the Mozzarella Mafia is behind it – or its someone who really loves cheeses!

The “god” of Islam is no different than the God of Christianity if…

-you deny the prophetic and apostolic revelation of the canonical books of the Bible;
-you deny the unique and primary covenant established with Abraham to bless the nations through Isaac;
-you deny the incarnation of Jesus Christ;
-you deny the nature of the Triune God, Father, Son & Holy Spirit;
-you deny the atonement of Jesus Christ, his sacrificial death on the cross as the only God    accepted satisfaction for human sin;
-you deny the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead;
-you deny the ascension of Jesus Christ and his heavenly reign as Lord of all;
-you deny his coming again;
-you deny the free gift of righteousness by grace through faith;
-you deny the exclusive saving power of the gospel;

The malady of our times, especially among the declining mainline liberal denominations and pseudo-evangelicals is the inability to make simple yet critical distinctions. However, not even presidential scoldings, professorial lectures or pontifical pronouncements can erase the differences between the dead end deception of Islam and the saving truths of historical Christian orthodoxy.

Devolution Dramatized?

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There are some moments that are symbolically significant.

Under the cover of night, a 6-foot-tall granite monument inscribed with the Ten Commandments was removed from the Oklahoma Capitol grounds after State Supreme Court judges said its placement on government land violated state law.
I understand the dangers from history concerning religious freedom.
I understand most of the convoluted constitutional arguments.
I side with James Madison on freedom of religion and the danger that government poses.
However, I do not believe that the First Amendment requires a “naked public square” as Richard John Neuhaus phrased it.
In contrast to the Oklahoma display, all manner of perverse behavior is portrayed openly in media without hesitation in the name of freedom and tolerance.
A nation that openly abandons the source of moral order and law, results in a vacuum that will be filled by something.

“Baphomet” – Detroit

I hesitate to imagine what it will be.

Isis – American Style!

So on the one hand some people in the US are offended by a relic of the past and the end result is it’s removed from public sight –

gen lee
On the other hand some people in Iraq are offended by a relic of the past and the end result is its removed from sight –


What exactly is the difference?
Banishing offensive images is not how problems are solved, conflicts are resolved or wounds are healed.
But maybe that assumes the “banishers” actually want that…

War Against the Weeds


“He can make the dry parched ground of my soul to become a pool and my thirsty barren heart as springs of water. Yes he can make this habitation of dragons this heart which is so full of abominable lusts and fiery temptations to be a place of bounty and fruitfulness unto Himself”
― John Owen, The Mortification of Sin

        I am an amateur, occasional gardener. No such thing you may say but every so often we give it a try. I still consider myself a beginner & no I don’t want well-intentioned advice on how to do it better. We are trying again this summer & planted some tomatoes, chili peppers, eggplant and basil, cilantro & oregano. Due to the uncommon rains in our corner of S.E. Colorado, I have had to spend lots of time on identifying and picking weeds since they have grown in profusion over the last weeks. What started out as a nice, weed free area with a few plants became a small jungle of intertwining opportunistic weeds who not only had spread remarkably fast but have also intertwined with the stuff I want to grow. So for a few hours today I sorted through the soil to root out the interlopers & once again the space looks somewhat weed free – at least for a few days.

Growing something worthwhile takes cultivation. Weeds need no such care – most gardeners won’t find this a surprise. Weeds need no help to thrive. I think there’s a parallel in the life of growing in grace and the Spirit. If I do nothing and kick back and don’t pay attention all kinds of sinful habits will easily sprout up & multiply – no effort required! But those weeds of mind, soul & spirit, if left to themselves will eventually smother the good in an aggressive, intertwining, life draining entanglement and steal the space, nutrients and moisture required by the good. To “bring forth much fruit” (John 15:8) as we are called requires time, attention and care. Those who cared for the soul in former times called for utilizing “the means of grace” – the spiritual disciplines which with the help of the Holy Spirit cultivate the heart, soul, mind and body for God including (but not limited to) prayer, reading the Bible, singing, hearing & listening to the Word of God preached, the Lord’s Table, meditation, confession of sin and serving others.

Growing in grace is not a passive activity. It requires my attention and action as well as at times with the Lord’s help, close up inspection and identification of what may be encroaching in my soul – just like my Anaheim & Jalapeno chilies. As to my battle with the weeds and what the garden hopefully produces – I will keep you posted.