Tag: Marty Wooten

To Russia With Love

Life can be so daily.” Gloria and I often quote those words of Pat Gempel to each other with tongue in cheek. We quote them because they are so true. The day-after-day routine of any part of our lives, spiritual or physical, can rob us of our zeal. Even in the Kingdom we often settle into repetitious patterns: one Sunday sermon follows the next, one quiet time follows the next. Even the incredible growth of our church can become “ho-hum.” I believe that, without special effort, we become spoiled spiritual kids of God. We become like kids visiting Disneyland, who for the first few rides cannot contain their excitement. But as the day wears on, they become increasingly bored and little seems to impress them. When we come into the Kingdom, we are beside ourselves with excitement. We’ve never heard sermons like these, never heard singing like this, never felt love like this. But with time it takes more and more to impress us.

Hoop Dreams

The score is tied with seven seconds left on the clock. The crowd goes wild as I steal the ball, drive the length of the court, pull up at the free throw line, shoot over the defender’s outstretched arms. The ball arches toward the basket and . . . . Whether you are a twenty-five-year-old hot shot ex-collegiate star from a Big Ten school now playing in the Open League or a fifty-four-year-old, like me, whose glory days of athletic prowess are many years past, playing in the Master’s League, we all dream of scoring the winning basket in an exciting game. Such are the HOOP DREAMS of players in the L.A. Church of Christ Basketball League.


As much as I enjoy getting a good night’s sleep, about the only positive thing that comes from it is the energy and alertness to have a productive day after I wake up. While we understand the need to get enough sleep, it is only when we are awake that our goals are accomplished. Spiritually speaking though, sleep is acceptable to God only in physical death; those who have physically died are said to be asleep (1 Corinthians 15:51).

Otherwise, one is in a very dangerous spiritual condition if he is described as being asleep (1 Thessalonians 5:6). Jesus’ very sobering call to the entire church in Sardis (Revelation3:2) was to wake up! They had fallen asleep.

Enter The Dragon

Our theme for this issue “Enter The Dragon” comes from the movie that catapulted the late Bruce Lee to international stardom. Of course, we use the title as a call to take the good news of Jesus Christ to the 1.2 billion people of China. This largest, most populous nation of all times has nearly five times as many citizens as the United States. Next to the Middle East countries, China remains the nation “officially” the most closed to Christianity.

Heaven & Earth

We are saved to save others, not just a few others but a world of others. We have the authority in Matthew 28:18-20. We have the power from God. We have the message of the resurected Christ.