Two-Men-In-a-Bed-a-Phobia

I had to laugh out loud when I got copied on an email today from one of our elders to certain brothers in the body that he wanted to challenge to attend Recharge, our retreat coming up on Nov. 18 and 19.

I assume each of you men have signed up for the retreat and are looking forward to a spectacular day and a half together. Please let me know if you have any barriers to joining us that we can help to overcome such as: finances, transportation, work schedule, too long of a honey-do list, can’t find a babysitter, afraid you will be home sick, don’t want to sleep in a strange bed, afraid you will miss your football game, allergic to sand or surf, Saturday is your day to sleep in, think you already know how to make disciples, or quite possibly your wife won’t let you out of the house. We will try to help in any way we can.

That just about covered the list of objections in my mind, except for one. I call it two-men-in-a-bed-phobia. In an attempt to keep costs down and to enable us to fly in our speaker Jonathan Dodson from Austin, Texas, we decided to book four men to a room. That means two guys per queen bed. Now I get it. I don’t relish this prospect myself. I like my space. Sleeping next to some snoring brother with hairy legs just doesn’t sound like my favorite way to spend the night.

I already decided that I would bring my own mat, pillow, and blankie and take a spot on the floor in my room just for my own comfort.

And then today I learned about a couple of brothers that have ruled out coming only because of this arrangement! So I thought, why not make it official and offer one of them my bed to help overcome the objection?

It makes me wonder how many other men out there suffer from the same phobia? Maybe more than we think.

So here’s my challenge. Who else will join me in such an offering? Who will voluntarily give up his space in a bed for the sake of some who struggle with this unfortunate affliction?

The gospel can help you do this! Paul tells us in Phil. 2:5-11 to imitate Jesus in His looking-out-for-the-interest-of-others example based upon His magnificent stoop from heaven to earth to become obedient to the point of death. Let’s defer to one another, serve one another, and stoop for one another from the bed to floor in the name of Christ Jesus, shall we?

If you think the Lord wants you to make such a gesture for the sake of our diseased brethren, please let me know in an email so I can apply this gospel medicine for their healing and relief. Many thanks!

Dealing With Death and Disease

The good folks at Ligonier Ministries have hit the ball out of the park once again with this month’s edition of Tabletalk Magazine focused on death and disease.

How I wish I had a copy during my head and neck cancer journey back in ’05. The articles within touch on so many redemptive themes that encourage the disabled, the suffering, and those experiencing the heartache of loss that comes with the last enemy.

And, true to form, my connection at the magazine has come through by making available to me several complimentary copies to distribute this Sunday at OGC. If you or somebody you know now walks through the valley of the shadow in some way, shape, or form, I highly encourage you to come see me this Sunday for a copy.

Here is a sample of the content from an extremely penetrating interview with Joni Eareckson Tada as she talks about various Scriptures that have sustained her over the years in her hard providence of quadriplegia:

Another anchor is Deuteronomy 31:6, where God tells me, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified [of quadriplegia, chronic pain, or cancer], for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you” (NIV). I’m convinced a believer can endure any amount of suffering as long as he’s convinced that God is with him in it. And we have the Man of Sorrows, the most God-forsaken man who ever lived, so that, in turn, He might say to us, “I will never leave you; I will never forsake you.” God wrote the book on suffering and He called it Jesus. This means God understands. He knows. He’s with me. My diving accident really was an answer to that prayer to be drawn closer to Him.

While I hope you enjoy these freebies, beyond that I hope it will propel some of you to become regular subscribers to Tabletalk even as I am. It anchors my daily quiet time with the Lord and that sweet place has profited all the more ever since I took a subscription.

To subscribe click here.