About Me

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New Orleans, LA, United States
Family from South Africa, Born in New Orleans, Lived in South Carolina. Married to Annabeth since May 2004. We have three boys (Bolt, Mack, and Birk). Currently living in Uptown NOLA and serving as Lead Pastor of Vintage Church and Camp Pastor of Student MissionLab.

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Saturday, May 9, 2009

DETOX: Day 10 (Daniel 11)

Saturday May 9: Daniel 11

Read Daniel 11

In spite of present evil situations, God is in control! He has always been and will always be sovereign. The prophecy given in this chapter is amazing when you read history and see that everything God shows Daniel is fulfilled exactly. God knew and controlled the Babylonians, Persians, Alexander the Great and his four sons. When the Antichrist arises in power and unleashes havoc, God will still be in control. Daniel concluded by saying “Yet he shall come to his end, with none to help him.” (v.45) The infinitely powerful God who guides the events of history also extends His guiding hand daily to each Christian. How do you need God to be your guidance?

Deeper Study: Compare yourself with Gideon (Judges 6 & 7)
Ask God for direction in the area of life that you currently need Him most.

My Reflections:

Matt Brick has done an amazing job with these short devos. I love being surrounded by studs. One of the things that sticks out to me the most in Daniel 11 and in this devo is the simple fact that "GOD IS IN CONTROL". This has so many implications to our lives. Our plans, our circumstances, our lives...He rules and it is all for His glory. God has orchestrated all things in this world for His supremacy. How dare I think that I am more significant that Him? What??????? Rob, there are times that you think you are more important than God? Everytime I sin or move against God's will for my life I am basically saying that I am more important than God. One of my pastor friends in town gave me this expression when confronting people on Lordship Salvation. "So what's it gonna be...Kingdom of Self or Kingdom of God." God is in control. He rules and reigns. Holy Spirit, unleash your knuckles upon my life in such a way that I never forget this truth.

Friday, May 8, 2009

DETOX: Day 8&9 (Daniel 9&10)

Thursday May 7: Daniel 9

Read Daniel 9

Daniel’s prayer stands as the model prayer for us to follow as we intercede on behalf of New Orleans, North America and the world. The beginning (v.4), the end (v.17-19), and everything in between is primarily focused on God. God-honoring and God-glorifying prayers are ones that have Him placed at the center. God does all that He does because He is who He is. (v.17-18) The answer for accomplishing Vintage’s world vision of reaching the nations must be found in God Himself. (v. 19) This type of prayer has an impact upon our daily lives because we realize that God is even more passionate about His interests and purposes than we could even imagine. Today, use this chapter as you pray and, as Daniel did, bring God’s greatness and glory into your prayers for His sake.

Deeper Prayer: Use Nehemiah 1:4-11 to help you be in continuous prayer today.

My Reflections:

This past Sunday, we looked at Daniel 9 as an example of how we should approach God in prayer. Remember Christian fasting and prayer focuses on God. Here are my notes from the message on Sunday. You can listen to the message at http://www.vintagenola.org/podcast


Contrast it with THE LORD’S PRAYER in Matthew 6:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

1. PRAISE (3-4)
Matthew 6:9
Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.”

2. CONFESSION (5-15)
Matthew 6:12
and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.

Matthew 6:11, 13
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

4. PRAISE – BOLDNESS (18-19)
Matthew 6:10
Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

God gives Daniel an answer:
Daniel 9:20-23

Vs. 20 Angel Gabriel brings an answer
Ch. 9-12 is the revealing of the coming of the Messiah and the end times (tons of different views)

All you need to know:

Friday May 8: Daniel 10

Read Daniel 10

John Piper described prayer as a wartime walkie-talkie for the mission of the church against the evil one. Daniel experienced spiritual warfare in this chapter as evil forces challenged his prayers. But the resistance made him even more fervent and earnest. (v.12-13) In the same way that the iPhone and Blackberry are powerful tools in the hands of business professionals, so is faithful prayer in the hands of Christians. Today, focus your heart on asking your heavenly Father for understanding, strength and the Words of Life to speak. Use prayer for the proclamation of God’s Glory.

Deeper Study: Meditate on Ephesians 6:10-20. Prayer is for wielding the Word.

My Reflections:

In Daniel 10, we find Daniel going on a 21-day fast. Reading through this book I am amazed at his pursuit of God. He is relentless. I love the illustration found in Piper's book. Is prayer a wartime walkie talkie or is it a domestic intercom? Life is war. God is calling us to seek him with great urgency. We are in a war for people's souls. Satan is throwing everything he can to distract the world from seeing Christ. Our only hope is for God to move. Thank you God for speaking to me through this fast about the urgency of praying for people's souls.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

DETOX: Day 6&7 (Daniel 7&8)

Daniel Second-Half Introduction
An Apocalyptic summary statement: “I have a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto.” Daniel and Revelation are two of the most different and difficult books to understand in the Bible. Both are known as apocalypses, carrying the meaning of disclosure. The message communicated through an apocalypse is that the future prediction of God’s action is something that would break into the present. Daniel 7 marks a major transition in the book, turning from stories about Daniel and his three friends (Chap. 1-6) to Daniel’s visions of the future (Chap. 7-12). Daniel’s visions revealed that the Messiah would be the ruler of a spiritual kingdom that would overshadow all other earthly kingdoms. Even though the second half of Daniel contains what some might consider strange images and symbols, this section is still God’s revelation of truth to his people. So let’s dive into His message to us as we continue in this present spiritual battle between God’s children and Satan.

Tuesday May 5: Daniel 7

Read Daniel 7

The most important truth that comes from Chapter 7 is the vision Daniel receives regarding the sovereignty of God. The Most High is the supreme ruler that controls history and human nature. This is at the core of the Gospel that we share with our friends and coworkers. At one time we were all eternally separated from God, but the amazing thing is that God did the impossible by making redemption available to us through Jesus Christ. (Rom 3:23-24) The Most High is a conqueror and His saints receive the eternal kingdom. (v.17-18) Will you live in the power and victory of the Most High today?

Deeper Study: Colossians 1:15-29. Commit yourself anew today to the Gospel.

Wednesday May 6: Daniel 8

Read Daniel 8

Daniel was so overcome by the visions of the future suffering of his people that he was set back a few days. (v.27) At this point Daniel didn’t fully understand the vision. Further details were to come later, but until then Daniel got on with his work. When you think about the enormity of the task facing Vintage Church in New Orleans, how do you respond? Today let these thoughts drive you to diligently pursue sharing with people how they can become a child of God.

Deeper Study: Soak up Luke 15. God’s heartbeat is to find that which is lost.

My Reflections:

The last two days we have launched into the apocalyptic visions that were given to Daniel. In ch. 7 we find the vision of the 4 beasts, the Ancient of Days, and the Son of Man. Honestly, all of these visions can be pretty difficult to understand. Don't feel too overwhelmed by all of these readings. There is nothing wrong with studying about the end times, but there is also nothing wrong with resting in the following phrase that my dad is known for saying, "JESUS WAS, JESUS IS, JESUS WILL BE COMPLETELY VICTORIOUS." What should this saying mean for us? It is actually quite simple. In Christ, you are victorious. Do you know Christ? Have you given your life to Him? I hope so. Christ is calling, surrender your life to Him.

Monday, May 4, 2009

DETOX: Day 4&5 (Daniel 5&6)

Sunday May 3: Daniel 5

Read Daniel 5

The story in Daniel quickly becomes a thriller with the intense drama in this chapter. In the ancient world, kings had all the power to either reward or punish people within the kingdom. (2:5-6) Daniel boldly announces the bad news no matter the cost. How courageously do you proclaim the Good News that Christians possess? May we say: “Nevertheless, I will make known to you the interpretation.” (v.17)

Deeper Study: Compare Daniel 5:18-23 with Matthew 23:1-11
Greatness comes from serving. How will you humbly give of yourself today?

My Reflections:

After taking over the throne from King Neb, King Belshazzar brings out some old idols and throws a large party in his home worshiping these idols. While they are gettin jiggy, a large hand writes something on the wall. I am grateful that Daniel wrote this book, because there is no way that we would have considered this story to be true. We would be blaming it on the al-al-al-al-al-alcohol. Daniel interprets the handwriting on the wall. The message is a tough word. Have you ever been at a party where things have gotten out of hand. How tough is it to stand against the crowd and speak truth? I am inspired by Daniel's boldness. God give me the boldness to stand for your truth even in tough places and circumstances.

Monday May 4: Daniel 6

Read Daniel 6

This chapter is packed FULL of meaning and application for our Christian life. Today our focus in on prayer as exampled in verses 10-11. When a law was proclaimed against prayer, Daniel’s immediate response was to go home, kneel down and PRAY! Prayer was an integral part of his daily life. Today if one of your lost friends barged in on you at home, where would you be found? Are you paying attention to earthly kings or your heavenly King who is the King of kings and Lord of lords? Today get so actively involved in sharing your faith that you have to passionately pursue guidance and strength from God.

Deeper Study: Compare the pictures of the living God in Daniel 3:8-30 & 6:16-27
Allow these passages to explode your view of God, who is more than able!

My Reflections:

What a story! Another King tries to get our boy Daniel to denounce his faith and focus upon God, but Daniel remains faithful. Remember his mission was all for God, his commitment was all to God, and his reward was all from God. What a stud!

God has really challenged my prayer life during this fast. Do you know that we have brothers and sisters around the world who would love to have the freedom to pray to God? But even though it is illegal, it doesn't stop most of them. Most days I can't even turn off the TV or get up a little earlier to pray. God forgive me for my lack of commitment to prayer. May I long to spend time with my Savior in PRAISE, CONFESSION, INTERCESSION, and BOLDNESS (check Daniel's prayer in Ch. 9).

Saturday, May 2, 2009

DETOX: Day 3 (Daniel 4)

Saturday May 2: Daniel 4

Read Daniel 4

It’s the Weekend! Time to relax, right? As you come before people today, are you one in whom the Spirit of the holy God dwells? Today, live enabled through the Spirit. (v.18) As Daniel lived, may we also live on May 2, 2009.

Deeper Study: John 14:9-31. Holy Spirit enables the advancement of the Gospel.

My Reflections:

Daniel 4 is a perfect picture of the power of the Gospel. King Neb started out this book completely against God, by the end of this chapter he has been humbled and is praising God. I know that I came to Christ at an early age, but I also recognize what I could have become without the power of the Gospel in my life. How about you? We are only saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. But once we are saved, there is a significant difference. This past week I was hanging with my buddy Robby Gallaty. He is now pastoring a megachurch in Chattanooga. 7 years ago he was one of the top drug dealers in the city of NOLA. What happened? Christ. The Gospel transformed him. I am praying today for all of my friends in Uptown that need this transformation. I love them and they need Christ. May God expose His grace and truth in their lives.

The passage in John is a confirmation of the work of God. Only God saves. The Holy Spirit is at work. He desires to use us to lead others to Him. Allow the Spirit to lead and guide you today.

Friday, May 1, 2009

DETOX: Day 2 (Daniel 3)

Friday May 1: Daniel 3

Read Daniel 3

-Who or what has your full attention today?
-Who are you serving today?
-Who are you worshipping today?
Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were three Jewish studs that trusted in the Most High God who is all-powerful and in whom there is no other. They committed to worship God more because of who He is rather than what He would or would not do. (v.17-18)

Deeper Study: Examine how Paul defines the Christian life (Philippians 1:12-30)

My Reflections:

I spent this morning with my buddy Mike Walker reading through Daniel 3 and Phil 1. We had a great time reading the text. Sometimes it is great just reading God's Word and let it speak. Read Nehemiah 8. I just heard my mentor David Platt preach on this as I drove to Ruston to preach tonight. I was sharing with Mike this morning that this was a great testimony for God because the 3 guys served as a confirming testimony to the true God. It started with Daniel in ch. 2 and was confirmed in ch. 3. The 3 guys refused to worship any idol and remained faithful to God. God protected them. It is so important that every person has a personal relationship with Christ. You can't worship Christ or obtain salvation through your parents, church, religion, etc. Shad, Mesh, and Abed were in a position of influence because of the faithfulness of Daniel in ch. 2. In ch. 3, the guys got a chance to take ownership and step up to the plate. They did so boldly for the glory of Christ. Tonight, this was confirmed in the lives of 5 youth. I preached at a DNOW tonight and gave a very intense invitation. No singing, praying, or lights dimmed. I challenged the youth to repent, quick hiding behind their parents, and stand up in response to the Gospel. 5 kids stood in front of their peers. Awesome. Thanks God for saving their souls.

By the way, one of my favorite texts is in Phil 1: "For to me to live is Christ, to die is gain."