Matt W Cook

writer.former fundamentalist.christianly fellow

Month: January, 2007

Censorship

So it seems that our dear friends in the Pakistani government have
decided that Blogger is an evil entity and must be banned from the
sensitive minds of the citizens here. As a result of that I can no
longer post anything here. I think the days of this blog are
numbered.

But, slick dude that I am, I have a solution. It may be temporary and
it may be permanent. I’m in the process of moving my blog to
matthewcook.wordpress.com. Hopefully I’ll be able to import things
over. At the very least I’ll be able to continue blogging.

So check me out. WordPress works fine in Pakistan so I should be a
regular blogger again.

Cook

The new and old

As you may have noticed, I finally caved and upgraded to the new Blogger design thingy. Next thing you know I’ll be prostituting the blog and using Ad-sense of something like that.

A little prayer request for you all. We got a call last night from Ruth’s father. Some of you may remember that a few years back he had some heart surgery. After you do that sort of thing the doctors wrap a nasty wire around your sternum to keep it from flying open at an akward time. The doctors recommed that you get it checked out sometime in the next few years. Ruth’s dad also is suffering from Luekemia. This forces him to go for monthly checkups to Karachi. This last time he decided to get his wire checked out, as he’s been feeling a bit of pain there recently. The doctor looked at it and said it had to be taken out immediately. As I type this Ruth is in Karahi and her father is probably in pre-op. It seems that the wire is coming loose, though I can’t be sure because communication breaks down pretty quick over here. So pray for him. It’s a nasty surgery that will take him out of commission for a while. Also pray about his financial situation. It’s costing 22,000Rs., which is more than my apartment costs for a month. This is especially difficult now, right after the holidays. Also Ruth and her little brother are going to be taking care of him while he’s recovering. They also have Jospeh, so their hands will be full. So pray.

Announcing…

The neatest thing to happen since sliced bread:
Braidwood Bible Chapel
God has used the words of many of these men to shape my life in a way that I would have never expected. I commend them to you for your joy and progress of faith.

Iron sharpens iron,
and one man sharpens another.

The best evangelistic strategy

For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

God does odd things. I’ve often wondered why Paul wasn’t allowed to go to Spain like he wanted to. Why couldn’t he preach there? Or why did Moses have to die outside the Promised Land? He could have led Israel for a few more years and maybe things wouldn’t have gotten as bad as they did. What if this? What if that? Blah blah blah. The foolishness of God is wiser than men.

Or so we say.

Meanwhile we still delight in mixing a spoonful of Scripture with a cup of brains and willpower when we do ‘ministry’. We claim to be led by the Spirit but I think we’re often led by common-sense, statistics and heavy thinking. Thinking’s not bad. Common-sense is pretty good. But I’d rather have the foolishness of God any day. And I’m sure everyone would agree.

But we usually agree in words only. What happens when it gets down to crunch-time? Are we really radical enough to throw the best laid plans? I read something neat:

If you return, O Israel, declares the Lord,
To me you should return.
If you remove the detestable things from my presence,
And do not waver,
And if you swear, ‘As the Lord lives,’
In truth, in justice, and in righteousness,
Then the nations shall bless themselves in him,
And in him shall glory.

So what is best evangelization plan or program? How will Canada, America, Sindh or Saudi Arabia be effectively permeated with the Gospel? Not by tracts. Not by programs or videos or campaigns or healing crusades. Not by schools or hospitals of drop-in centers (even though these things may help a little). The key to the total evangelization of the world is in Lovers of Christ. This passage amazes me. You expect the last two lines to say something like ‘I will bless you and give you victory’ like most other prophecies. But God wants to point out something different here. You want people to taste the God you have tasted? Prove that he tastes good! We need lovers of Christ who don’t waver in truth, justice and righteousness. lovers of Christ who separate themselves and ‘swear’ by their hope in Christ, not counting on the crap the world counts on. That is where success lies. Not in out best-laid plans, but in the radical, not-so-wise, complete submission and rejoicing in the Christ of the universe. If we insist on using our brains first and adding a bit of Bible polish later we will experience the truth that God uses the foolish things of the world to confound the wise. I would much rather be a fool with Chirst than a genius without.

Pray for radical obedience.