Three Ps in a Pod. part 1

2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation: The old has gone, the new is here!” NIV

Doesn’t that just sound great reading that verse? I am filled with hope just knowing that I am a new creation! But there is still more so for the next two minutes, let’s see what we can discover!

Therefore…how many times do we see that word in Scripture? In 2 Corinthians 5:11-21, the NIV has it listed 3 times. So what is it there for?

Our verse, verse 17, starts with “Therefore…”. So we need to ask the question,
What is it there for?


 

Paul is writing to a church that is having some issues. Many of these issues are similar to ours today. I think that the Corinthians were having an identity issue. Christ had done a redeeming work but the people were not translating that to their daily lives very well.

Chapter 5 starts with Paul describing how our bodies are temporary. We will be clothed with glory when we die. Verse 10 talks of the judgement seat of Christ. All will stand before Christ someday. This should galvanize us to live all the more for Christ!

There is a transition, then, into verse 11. The author is trying to explain why he preaches and lives the way he does. Jumping to verse 14, it reads, “For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all,…”

I love the strong language…compels. Who is compelled these days? Wow!

And more strong words…

“one died for all…”

Because my two minutes is almost up, I will get right to it.

You have been pardoned for your sin. I have also been pardoned.

The sin is gone.

I will jump into this blissful pool of sin-eradication next week.

Until then, enjoy your Pardon. =-)

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Something familiar yet strange again.

So I was thinking…pondering something today. A certain verse came to my mind this morning and it has been bouncing around all day.

But I don’t really understand it. It boggles my mind. I made scrambled eggs for my kids this morning. It feels like my mind is just like those eggs, all scrambled.

This verse is one that I have known for as long as I can remember. But today, I felt like it was a new verse, one I had never heard before. It seemed to be so full of promise and hope.

All I need is for God to open my eyes (Psalm 119) to the depth and richness of His words. Jesus said that the Holy Spirit will guide me into all truth (John 16).

2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”

Words so engrained yet they barely register. If I am ‘in’ Christ, I am new. I didn’t feel old. Maybe not old but dead.

Yes, that’s it. Dead. No purpose. No sense or reason to live. Sin had it’s way with me. I was dead but now I alive, new!

All because of Christ. Everything is a result of what He has done. Everything. He is the vine and I am a branch.

I can’t do anything without Him.

I don’t own anything without Him.

I am nothing. Old.

BUT WITH HIM…I can do anything.

I have anything and everything I need. He is my all and everything.

 

Wow…”The old has gone, the new is here!”

Power Grid

Keeping the lights on! This is the main theme for Power Grid. From the opening auction to the end-game scramble, Power Grid is a suspenseful and exciting game for 2-6 players. Players will fight for control of the least expensive routes between cities. In the auction phase, bidding on more productive power plants can be frustrating. In the meantime, one must keep a balance of finances, strong enough power plants, and building the right amount of cities. Although I tend not to win very often, this game is very fulfilling if you can end up winning at the end by… keeping your lights on! =-)

power grid box

Last July was when I posted my first game review. If you are interested, click here to go back and read that post. It might give you better understanding of my rating system. As with Settlers of Catan, I do not want to explain how the game works or get into all of the rules and strategies. You will just get a small sample. =-)

My purpose here is to simply rate and review Power Grid.


 

Here is my rating system:

There are 10 points distributed in 5 categories.

Learning – Can players teach/learn in a short amount of time? Is the rule book clear and concise?

Components – Are the pieces good quality? Do they make the game better or are they distracting?

Interaction – Do players need to work together? Is there actions that can be spiteful or helpful?

Complexity – How deep is this game? Are there lots of ways to earn points and win?

Replayability – Will this game get boring? Is it the same for every play?

Each category will earn 0, 1, or 2 points.

Score of 0 – game does a poor job or does not display any beneficial or useable substance

Score of 1 – passable quality and fair mechanics but will still lack superior form

Score of 2 – excellent craftsmanship and function, brings enhancement to overall game play


And Power Grid earns…

Rate – 8 out of 10 

Learning – This game can be tough to learn. The gameplay is somewhat confusing because each turn, the order changes. Score of 1

Components – The wooden pieces are typical. The paper money is a hassle so we just use pen/paper to keep track of our money. Score of 1

Interaction – Players must auction every turn. Players can also block other players for better routes. Lots of interaction here. Score of 2

Complexity – The only luck factor is which power plants come out. You must adapt to the game every time to win. Score of 2

Replayability – There are power plants that change every game. With turn order changing constantly, you won’t play the same game twice. Score of 2

power-grid game

If I continue to rate these games, I feel as if I will never get a 10 out of 10. Power Grid is certainly in my top ten list of favorite games. Perhaps even my top 5. I really love playing all kinds of board games but this one just gets me. So don’t let the 8 of 10 score fool you. Playing this game can be electrifying!

 

One last item. Would you take the poll? I plan on a Rate and Review every 3-4 months. Thanks!

Exiled! part 4

Have you ever broken a promise? I have. And other people have as well. In a word, it is disappointing.

God never breaks His promises. And that is awesome.

  • The last three weeks have seen the Israelites being exiled, commanded to stay and settle in Babylon all because God has a plan for them.
  • You can click here to read Exiled! part 3. It might be good to catch up. =-)

So now, in the last post of this series, we will see the best part about the Israelites being exiled.

Let’s look at a couple of verses to start things rolling. Jeremiah 29:12-14 reads, 12Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares theLord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

God is making some promises in these verses. In fact, I will copy these verses again but I will add some underlines this time.

12Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.b I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares theLord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

When I read this, it seems very obvious to me that God has a plan. I feel like He always has a plan. But in that plan, there is always our part. We have to obey God in order for His plan to succeed. Even though God is all-powerful and could do anything He wants to, He has chosen for us to be a vital portion of His plan.

He needs us.

He set it up so we could play our part and both of us win. A true win-win situation.

Just for fun, here are those verses one more time. This time, however, I have put our part in bold letters.

12Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.b I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares theLord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

  1. Call
  2. Pray
  3. Seek
  4. Find

God wants us to give Him everything. Our whole heart. Jesus said the same thing in the New Testament.

If we call, pray, and seek Him with all our heart, we will find Him.

And that is just one of the many promises that God has never broken.