Thursday, August 24, 2006

Pieces of Proverbs - Asteroids

This is the third and final post (for now) in a short series of simple observations regarding sin found in Proverbs .

Proverbs 5:7-8
And now, O sons, listen to me,and do not depart from the words of my mouth. Keep your way far from her,and do not go near the door of her house...

"Do not go near the door of her house": in other words, avoid putting oneself in positions where one will be tempted to sin. The statement is not simply, "don’t go in her door," but rather, "don’t even go near her door."

This is likely a testimony to the very strong attraction that such temptations have over one, much like (to wax astronomical) the gravitational pull of a planet on passing asteroids. If the asteroid stays far enough away, it is unaffected by the strong gravitational pull, but if it comes closer, its course is inevitably altered—and if it comes close enough, it is pulled into the planet, becoming annihilated as it burns up in the planet’s atmosphere.

Sexual sin is like this in that one should not flirt with the temptation; to do so is already to have been defeated.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Pieces of Proverbs - The Path

Continuing in a series of insights and observations in the Proverbs...

Proverbs 5:5-6
Her feet go down to death;her steps follow the path to Sheol; she does not ponder the path of life;her ways wander, and she does not know it.

In verse five, the author states that the feet of the adulteress "go down to death, her steps take hold of Sheol," with the consequence (in verse six) that "her ways are unstable [but] she does not know it."

Like the "lip" motif in verses one through three, this description of the adulteress’ feet and "ways" is set over against the advice (or wisdom) given by the author at the end of the previous chapter. There, the author has already admonished the reader to "watch the path of your feet," with the consequence that "all your ways will be established."

So the author appears here to be contrasting 1) the wise man’s self-knowledge, mindfulness and attentiveness to his lifestyle and careful, intentional consideration of the effects of his behavior on his life to 2) the adulteress’ lack of self-knowledge and inability or unwillingness to "ponder the path of life."

The wise man’s ways are "established" as a result, while the adulteress’ ways are "unstable". Since stability is much to be preferred over instability, the truly good option is here obvious.

Monday, August 21, 2006

A Word From LaJuana Magee of IFO

"My life has undergone tremendous change after finding IFO.
I have been touched by the faith of those involved".
Aloke from India

"Yes, I believe in miracles because now I know there is a God".
Wei from China

The quotes above are just two of the lives that have been touched/changed by the love of God demonstrated through his people.

What a wonderful privilege we have to serve the Lord in such a way. IFO serves to enlarge His kingdom and His righteousness in the lives of internationals who come, year by year, to live and study in Central Arkansas. Most of the hundreds of internationals that come, have never heard the message of the gospel. Most have never stopped to think about eternity. Over half of the internationals that study in Central Arkansas are from restricted or closed countries. Last year God allowed us to see many hearts become open to His love and grace and several place their faith in Him.

As I have been picking up the new internationals from the airport, I wonder which hearts and lives will change during their time with us. Knowing that is the work of God, brings great comfort. Knowing that He has placed them in our paths to love, serve and tell, challenges me. I hope that it does the same with you. We are expecting around 120 new internationals at UALR and 100 new internationals at UCA. We do not know how many new ones are at UAMS. There are hundreds! Central Arkansas has become a mission field in itself. You can be a missionary right here where you live.

Would you pray about how God will use you this year in the life/lives of internationals?

Here are some ways to serve:

1. Become an American Friendship Partner: Plain and simple - be a friend! We ask that you spend a couple of times a month with your friend. Contact them once a week; e-mail is fine. Let them be apart of your life.

2. Come to Conversation Club: A “once a week for six weeks” commitment beginning the later part of September. We have Conversation Club during the lunch hour at UAMS, on Monday evenings at UALR, and Thursday evenings at UCA. You don't have to commit to all campuses. If you are interested, choose one campus.

3. Special Events: We have several throughout the year. Sign up with IFO to get info messages about our special events. Come and make a friend.

4. Hospitality: As internationals come into a new cultural environment, adjusting can be hard. Helping them get settled is a demonstration of God's love and care for them. Sometimes they ask, "Why do these Americans do these things for me".

5. Holiday Hospitality: Invite a international to spend a holiday with you and your family.

These are just a few ways that you can serve with us.

Would you think about it? Would you pray about serving with us?

If you would like more information on how you can be apart of this ministry, contact LaJuana Magee at or check out or website at

2.22 will be helping with the Fall IFO Picnic - See blog post below!!

IFO PICNIC - Details & Ministry Opportunities

International Friendship Outreach (or IFO) is a community based program offering opportunities for social and cultural interaction between American hosts and internationals who study, work, or live in the central Arkansas area. They also sponsor a number of social events and outings during the year. They offer these services in both the Little Rock and Conway areas. IFO is a mission partner of the Bible Church of Little Rock.

Below are details for the upcoming IFO Picnic:

When: Saturday, September 16th, 2006
Where: Maumelle Park (off Hwy 10), Pavilion #2
Time: Official start time 5 pm. However there is some help needed before this to get set up starting at 2:45.

What: Food, Fun & Friends followed by Volleyball, Basketball & Soccer (games will be setup beforehand along with some board games for early arrivals.).

Don’t forget to bring lawn chairs of something to put on the ground to sit on as we do not have enough seating. Also, if you could empty your ice makers and brink in picnic coolers for drinks and food, it would be much appreciated.

BCLR 222 Group members are being asked:

1) To buy a case of bottled water and put it in the church refrigerator the evening before (or they can give me the case no later than two nights before the picnic and I can take it to the church OR they can place the water in their own cooler and bring it themselves). We would ask that everyone who does plan on coming to the picnic to please bring a case of bottled water (I think there are 24-36 bottles in a case).

2) To go to the church on Saturday afternoon at 2:15 pm to pick up any food that has been dropped off for the picnic; to fill the Igloo water coolers from the youth department and ice chests with ice; to fill the coolers with water; to load folding tables (11-12) and chairs (50-100) and bring to Maumelle Park by 2:45 pm.

3) To set up the tables and chairs

4) To break out of our group and to mingle and converse with the international students. To eat with them, get to know them and let them get to know us, and to enjoy the games which will follow the activities.

5) To help with breaking down the tables and chairs. On the set-up and break down we can split where some people come early to set up and others stay late to break down.

I am asking that people not PROCRASTINATE on letting me know if they are going to be able to be at the picnic or not. So if you can give me an answer by the END OF AUGUST it would be greatly appreciated. I need to let Vicky know as soon as possible how many of the 222 group are going to be able to help so she can know if she needs to ask others in the church to help with set up and tear down. The most important thing is spending time with the students so if all you can do is come for the picnic but can’t come early or stay late that is NO PROBLEM! We want to build God-glorifying relationships with these international students and show them that we care about them.

Please contact Michael Hamline to let him know if you want to participate:

A) Email
B) Phone: 501-225-1011
C) Tuesday night where sign-up forms will again be available. Please give these forms back to me or else I won’t know you signed up. If you have already signed up then you don't have to contact me.

Pieces of Proverbs - Honey

A while back, I promised some posts for the guys on the subject of sexual sin & temptation. Well, here's an attempt to stick to my word. Hey, better late than never, right?. I'm going to post several short articles that I'm also posting on my own blog - in case you aren't a faithful reader of iamchief :o)

Feel free to comment and dialogue on these.

A friend has recently been doing some meditating in Proverbs and recording some of his thoughts and observations. I found them to be so helpful, that I asked for his permission to post them here. They're simple, yet profound insights, that I think will be helpful to all of us.

I'm not sure how many I'll post, but I've got at least three sets of verses for this week. I'll call them "Pieces of Proverbs". We'll begin in Proverbs 5.

Proverbs 5:1-4
My son, be attentive to my wisdom;incline your ear to my understanding, that you may keep discretion,and your lips may guard knowledge. For the lips of a forbidden woman drip honey,and her speech is smoother than oil, but in the end she is bitter as wormwood,sharp as a two-edged sword.

In the first three verses, there is a "lip" motif.

The author advises the reader to cultivate discretion so that one’s "lips may preserve wisdom." This is set over against the lips of the adulteress, which initially seem abundantly delightful—the author expresses this by saying that her lips "drip honey," seeming to indicate such a promising abundance of pleasure. This promise is true, but dangerously lacking in full disclosure, however, for verse four says that "in the end she is bitter as wormwood." It is interesting here that the author does not claim that her lips are bitter but that she is bitter. This seems to be a reference to the character of the adulteress considered as a whole.

The author does not deny that there is genuine pleasure to be had in the lips of the adulteress; to deny this would be radically implausible. Rather, he seems to be claiming that one’s delight in such pleasure is inextricably linked to the experience of a greater bitterness that is hidden from view at the outset.

The promise of such pleasure is so dangerous because it seems to capture all of one’s attention, preventing one from observing discretion in these matters.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

STEP Ministries and 2.22

Quite a few from 2.22 took 9 hours out of their summer to serve in an inner-city ministry called STEP. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings, from 5 until 8, each "mentor" is paired up with one (sometimes two) "mentees" for the purpose of relationship building and Bible study.

Rachel Riggan served in STEP in July she said:

I had a 13yr. old girl who is a Christian, and seemed to have a teachable heart. She has a sad home life as 3 siblings have different fathers.She and one sister have the same dad but he took off when they were little. She has had a mentor this last year, so she knew more of what was going on than I did at first. She was eager to learn and she did ask lots of questions. I think she is still trying to understand alot of things. I enjoyed her so much and wished that the program was longer than 3 days. It is amazing how you go to serve to be a blessing and you end up being blessed through them. The Lord is so good!!!

Rachel Riggan & Alecia
If you served in STEP this summer, send me an email describing your experience & a photo, and we'll post it on the blog.

Meanwhile, here's a couple of photos of other 2.22ers and their mentees...

Lani Stine & her new friend

Emily Griggs had two young ladies to mentor
Jason & Ross Riggan

15 yr old, Carl Johnson & Aaron Wilson

(Wow...I really look fat in that picture, don't I?)