Tuesday Mind Dump (9/21/21)

September 21, 2021  |  Luke Simmons

• Been a decent last few weeks since my last mind dump.

• Last weekend, I got to go to see my old high school in Colorado, Cherry Creek, play football against Chandler High.

• Creek hadn’t lost in 25 games and Chandler in 37, so it made for a fun game.

• In the end, Chandler prevailed — the game didn’t feel as close as the 17-7 score.

• But it was still a lot of fun.

• A bunch of folks I know from the athletic department came down to AZ for the game and it was sweet to reconnect with them.

• My kids have heard me share Cherry Creek stories over the years and have visited the school when we go to Colorado, so it was fun for them to see a game.

• And, just going to high school football on a Friday night is a good time.

• Speaking of high school football, did you hear about the Hamilton game this past Friday?

• Molly and I were at home watching the end of the Illinois game (because apparently Illinois is actually a high school team that plays on Friday nights) and we flipped over to the game between Hamilton and Bishop Gorman from Nevada.

• We turned it on with about 40 seconds left in the game and saw one of the most remarkable finishes to a game we’ve ever seen.

• Long story short: with 70 seconds left, Hamilton was down 24-7 and came back to win in regulation time!

• Pretty wild — and very fun to have been watching it live.

• After last week’s Cherry Creek game, I went on Saturday and Sunday on a camping trip with Caitlin and Mary.

• We did it through a group called Legacy Adventures, who does multiple Father/Son and Father/Daughter trips per year.

• It’s a ministry that was started about 15 years ago, and this was our family’s second trip.

• They do a fantastic job and make it super easy for somebody like me who isn’t super outdoorsy.

• It’s a few days to connect, learn fun skills (like hatchet throwing and archery), and make some sweet memories.

• Best of all, it’s only one night sleeping in a tent. 😆

• A few of our highlights:

• I highly recommend it to any dad who is looking for a fairly easy way to have a fun experience with your kids.

• It hit me on the Saturday night of the camping trip that Seth was preaching the next day on Gender (gender identity, specifically) and that I wasn’t even slightly nervous about it.

• It’s pretty cool to have such a significant and combustible topic be put in so extremely capable hands, and I was proud of Seth for the sermon he preached.

• Then this Sunday, I was preaching on Sex (sexuality, specifically).

• I really enjoyed the study and preparation, which majored on two specific things…

• One was our preaching collective meeting with all the preachers across Redemption where Josh Butler from R/Tempe shared a bunch of stuff that ended up in my sermon.

• (If you aren’t familiar with Josh’s work, you should check out his books)

• The other big piece was reading Ray Ortlund’s new book, The Death of Porn: Men of Integrity Building a World of Nobility.

• I love Ortlund’s heart and I really wanted to engage with his approach on it.

• It was hopeful, winsome, motivating, sobering, and overflowing with the goodness of Jesus.

• Also, it’s also short (~100 pages).

• I loved it so much and found it so massively encouraging that I ended up using a quote from it to finish my sermon:

God’s love is too great to be limited to what you deserve. God gives his best to those who deserve his worst. Maybe you are a mess. But with Jesus, you’re a messy winner, because you’re his mess. Do you really think, after the cross, your shame drives God away? Nope. You think you’re disgusting to him? Wrong again. The worst things about you are where he loves you most tenderly. God welcomes high-maintenance sinners who keep coming back to him for more mercy and more mercy and more mercy, multiple times every day. He isn’t tired, and he isn’t tired of you

• I think we’re going to give away a bunch of copies of this book at the next Men’s Breakfast.

• So going into Sunday I felt pretty good about the content of the sermon, but on Sunday morning I was battling some pretty severe feelings of condemnation and accusation from the Enemy related to my own history.

• The good part is that I was mindful of my weakness and need for Jesus, but I needed help to fight through the accusation.

• I asked a few pastors who were here early to pray for me and then I invited the Lord to be sufficient in my weakness.

• Then I tried to do my best and am trusting God with the results.

• Was weird in that it felt a bit like a shotgun blast — covering so many different aspects.

• But that’s kind of what it needed to be I guess.

• Here’s the sermon in case you missed it — and a bunch of good resources on the subject.

• It’s been fun after these sermons to record some follow-up podcasts with Seth on the King & Culture podcast.

• We’ve been able to share some of what was left on the cutting room floor as well as just talk further about the various topics.

• That’s where I’m headed here in just a minute, to record the latest one.

• Before I go, though, here’s the link to where you can watch tonight’s Inside Redemption Live on The Body, Sex, and Gender Identity: youtube.com/RedemptionChurchAZ

• I’m hosting it at R/Tempe along with Dana Dailey from R/Alhambra and we’re livestreaming it as well.

• It will involve two equipping lectures — Seth on what it means to have a body and how the Christian vision of the body shapes our understanding of gender, and then Josh Butler on what it means to be feminine or masculine.

• Then we’ll close it with a conversation with the four of us: me, Dana, Josh, and Seth.

• Should be a thought-provoking and, hopefully, helpful time.

• If you’re available, go ahead and tune in live with us — or watch it on-demand later.

• Well, that’s it for today.

• All of life is all for Jesus.