Wake Up, It's Christmas!

How did we let things get in this kind of shape? Christmas has become almost unrecognizable! The celebration of Jesus' birth that should bring peace and joy to all mankind has become a season of dread, despair and depression for many and overspending and overindulgence for almost everyone.
I know that Christmas has it's origins in pagan history as the celebration of winter and the "church" adopted it as a celebration of Jesus' birth to keep Christians from being wooed into paganistic revelry by giving them something "Christian" to celebrate. I don't have a problem with that. I think most Christians today know that Jesus wasn't born in December. When we celebrate is not what is important, it's what we are celebrating that is important! We celebrate the greatest gift ever given; God gave His son Jesus as a sacrifice for the sin of the entire world!
Instead of celebrating that gift that was given to us, we decided somewhere along the way that we should give gifts to each other. That decision has led to a perversion of the holiday. Christmas has become a pressure-filled excuse to overspend and overindulge. The only real winners these days are the stores and credit card companies. People who don't have money to spend go into debt that takes them the rest of the year to pay off and those who don't have the luxury of a credit card and can't buy gifts often go into a deep depression. Is it any wonder that the suicide rates soar during the holidays? The season when we should be resting and spending time with our families has become the most busy and stressful of the entire year!
It will never change unless we change it. We need to get back to the true reason for the season. We need to stop spending money and start spending time. We need to stop going to WalMart and start going to Church. We need to start showing our love for each other all year long in acts of kindness instead of one day a year with an expensive gift.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Doesn't Suit Me

What's with all the suits?! I understand dressing nice to go to church (we always had
"Sunday go to meeting" clothes when I was a kid), and I believe in honoring God with the best we have. But some churches won't allow a man behind the pulpit (or even on stage) without a suit! I believe wearing a suit has become a tradition of men and does more harm than good.
First of all, I believe that when we go to church with the purpose of honoring God, we are robed in the righteousness of Christ Jesus. I don't think that God looks on our outside, but into our hearts. What good does it do to come to church in a $1000 suit and have a dirty heart?
Secondly, I don't remember reading in the Bible where Jesus dressed in clothes that proved He was a "man of God" or a "priest", but Jesus went out of His way to associate Himself with common people. Actually, He scolded the "holy men" time after time for wearing things and doing things that they thought would make them look or sound holier than everyone else!
Thirdly, when I was a non-believer, I could never quite feel comfortable in church because I was dressed in regular clothes and all the other men were in suits. I believe more people would come to church if they could come and feel comfortable being themselves and not feel like they had to dress up. And what if I can't afford a suit? Do you think I am likely to come to church in my regular clothes and sit amongst all those suits? No, probably not.
Fourthly, while I'm sure that some Preachers and Pastors feel like suits make them more "respectable" in the eyes of their congregation, I believe most people feel nervous around men in suits. I think people could get a lot closer to Pastors if they felt like their Pastor was a common man like them.
Hey, maybe it's just me, but I just think that as Christians we should be doing everything we can to show that we're just plain, ordinary folks; not better, just forgiven! I think we should do everything possible to make non-believers comfortable around us. How else will we get to tell them the good news?!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Follow the Leader

People don't want Jesus because they want to do their own thing without having someone tell them what that thing is. Human beings don't like to be told what to do. They reject God, His rules and His sovereignty, and refuse to be ruled over.
But then people will allow other people, mere humans, to run their lives for them! I don't get it! We allow someone in Paris to tell us what is fashionable to wear; we let Oprah tell us who to vote for; we can't wait to pick up the latest fan magazine to see what some movie star says we should eat, or drive, or think! We follow these people without questioning and won't allow Almighty God to direct our lives! What's going on?!
It has always amazed me that last week Jim Bob Jones was a waiter in a restaurant and nobody cared in the least what he thought about anything, but this week he's been "discovered" by Hollywood and has a hit movie and now people everywhere hang on his every word! We follow the lead of men and shun the leadership of God, even denying His existence!
Everyone is following someone and some people are following just anyone. Haven't our earthly leaders let us down enough already? Open your eyes and ears to Jesus and He will lead you with His wisdom and His love!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Then We Will See

The day is coming when being a Christian will make you an enemy of the state. It's hard to fathom how, in a country founded and settled by God-fearing men and women, the very ideals and beliefs that has made us the greatest country in the world could become so belittled and hated . But as the old saying goes, "You ain't seen nothin' yet!". So far, being a Christian is only grounds for being mocked and reviled, but soon it will be grounds for prosecution and imprisonment. Preaching will be 'hate speech'. Churches will meet covertly. Bibles and Christian literature will be banned. Then we will see the ultimate meaning of "laying down our lives for Jesus"! It's not as far away as some may think; the groundwork is being laid now.
Then we will see who's real and who's masquerading! Pastors won't have six-figure budgets to command or thousand seat churches full every Sunday morning. There will be no TV cameras or book deals or cheering audiences. Pastors and preachers will be criminals who are hunted down and disposed of. Christians won't have beautiful, air-conditioned churches with padded seats to recline in. Meetings will be held in secret in some dark, secluded place and comfort will be the least of our worries. Our very lives will be at stake! We'll understand what Paul meant when he said "...I die daily...". Christians will be blamed for everything bad in the world and will become everyone's enemy. Profession of faith will be like signing your own death warrant! In those days there won't be people going to Church just to make good business contacts or to use their Church affiliation to bolster their public image. Politicians won't use Church membership to garner votes.
I know I paint a pretty bleak picture. I'm not trying to scare anyone, only to warn everyone! The Bible warns us about the last days and it doesn't paint a pretty picture either! For a true Christian these things are not things to worry about, but things to rejoice over! The end of this life is just the beginning of eternity with Jesus! Look around and see what foundations are being laid! Understand the signs of the times. Read your Bible to get wisdom and pray always! Get ready and stay ready.

Powered by ScribeFire.


An Inside Job

I think the big difference between Jesus and Buddha, Mohammad and other religious icons is that Jesus asks us to do certain things but then promises to help us to do them. The others are all full of do's and don'ts, but you're on your own to get the job done! Jesus not only promises to help us do what He asks us to do, but actually intends on taking up residence inside us and doing them Himself! What a concept! Religion tells a person to act, think and live a certain way and then leaves them alone to figure out how to do it and then to struggle to get it done. Jesus says He will come into our lives and teach us what to do and what not to do and then help us to get it all done!
Imagine that you're a parent of a little league baseball pitcher and you're standing outside the fence watching him pitch a game. Being older and wiser, you know what pitches he should make to each batter and you yell out instructions to help him. The problem is, even though you can tell him to throw a 90 mile-an-hour fastball, he doesn't have the strength or know-how to do it, and therefore your instructions don't help him, they just frustrate him! Knowing what to do isn't much help if you don't know how to do it or don't have the ability to do it! But what if you could walk out to the mound and climb inside his body and give him all your knowledge and all your strength?! Now he can get the job done! He not only has instructions, but know-how and ability!
That's what Jesus will do for us! He will climb inside and give us His knowledge and His ability! Then we will have everything we need to get the job done right! Please don't settle for just being told what to do and what not to do! Believe me, you can't do it; I know, many of us have tried and none of us can! Go to the one who promises to help. Jesus is the way; He won't ask you to fly unless He plans to give you wings!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Small Churches

I love small churches. Our church was once a small church and I miss it. Members of small churches can stay closer to each other than members of large churches. Some very large churches have members who don't even know each other! I love the close-knit, family feel of a small church. I like the way the Pastor has a chance to talk with every single member after service is over. I like the way the congregation gathers in the parking lot after church to share their lives. Small churches don't have so many "outreach programs" that they forget to "in-reach" to each other! Small churches have the time to really love visitors and every member of the congregation can come by and shake visitors hands and give them a personal welcome.
I'm not saying there is anything necessarily wrong with a large church. It just seems to me that they are all so busy! I know that time is short and we must all be about our Father's business, but I believe His house should be a house of prayer, help and rest. The world is a busy place; we all need somewhere we can go to find some rest!
I wonder how many members of large churches are members just because it's a large
church? Churches are like restaurants; you can't always judge the quality of the food by how many cars are in the parking lot! Sometimes it's the small, out-of-the-way diner that serves the best food! We should be looking for a great anointing, not a great crowd.
I think some Pastors judge their effectiveness by how many people are in their congregation. Jesus had thousands of people following Him around, but He only had twelve disciples. Quality often surrenders to quantity. I understand the desire to reach greater numbers of people for Jesus, but we are called to make disciples of people, not just pack them in!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Speakers and Shepherds

I believe the Church has too many speakers and not enough shepherds. It seems many people are 'deciding' to become pastors these days. They go off to school and take classes in speaking and communicating, church history and prophecy and become church pastors. There is nothing wrong with learning to hone your craft if you are called of God to do it, but too many of our pastors aren't called of God; they're self-made pastors. You may or may not be able to tell the difference from the pulpit, but you sure can tell from their actions.
The Bible says that a pastor is a shepherd. His local church is the flock he has been called to serve (yes, the pastor is a servant). It is his sacred responsibility to lead, protect, teach and correct his flock, always under the direction of the Holy Spirit. He will always be willing to do what is good for his flock regardless of how it impacts his career, his image or his money. He will lay down his life for his sheep, he will leave the 99 to go after the one that has gone astray and he will remember that he is their shepherd, not their king.
I have to wonder when I see the mega-churches and the TV ministers who have Rolex watches, Lexus cars and million dollar mansions, are they shepherds or just great speakers? Do they watch over their flock or fleece their flock? Do they see themselves as servants of the sheep or do the sheep exist to serve them? Are they laying up treasure in Heaven or building a career and making themselves a name on Earth? When one of their sheep leaves do they go after him or just say "I'm not going to beg anyone to go to my church!"? Do they do what's best for the flock or what's profitable and popular?
When the angels of God appeared to men in the Bible, they wouldn't allow themselves to be worshiped and yet we see pastors who accept people's worship and welcome and encourage it. Many Christians go to a church solely because of the pastor, not because they were led of the Holy Spirit to be there. People are blindly following a charismatic personality instead of a Holy Spirit anointing; can the anti-christ be far behind?

Powered by ScribeFire.


Jesus is My Life-Jacket

No one is looking for a savior unless they know they need to be saved. It's like trying to give a life-jacket to someone who's a good swimmer; they don't see the need for it and therefore, it's just something that will get in the way of their swimming. People who don't understand how sin separates us from God, won't be very receptive to hearing about Jesus. They don't see why they need Him and therefore, He'll just get in the way of their living.
A life-jacket will keep your head up above water and keep you from drowning, but if you're a good swimmer you can hold your own head up and the life-jacket just restricts you from swimming freely the way you want to. People who don't know they're sinners feel the same way about Jesus; they feel like they are good people who are living good lives and Jesus would just restrict them from living their lives the way they want to. If I felt like I could do everything for myself, why would I look for help? And why would I want someone telling me how to do something and cramping my style when I feel like I am perfectly capable of doing it myself?
Until the Holy Spirit convinces a person of their sin and they see for themselves how helpless they are on their own, they will not want or accept Jesus. Until they see they need saving, they won't be looking for a savior. Sometimes we spend a lot of time talking to certain people (maybe a relative or an especially good friend) about Jesus and nothing seems to happen. We tend to get frustrated and end up just "bugging" that person. We need to pray that the Holy Spirit convince them of their sin and move on to someone else until He does. You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink. Until he's thirsty and needs water, he's not going to drink it. You can lead a man to Jesus, but you can't make him get saved. Until he knows he's lost he won't be looking for someone to rescue him.
I've had a few hard things happen in my life and they certainly weren't any fun. But those things helped me to see my need for Jesus and I am eternally grateful. I believe that is why Jesus said that poor people are blessed; it's because they don't have money and worldly possessions to trust in and turn to Jesus and trust in Him for everything. When you trust in Jesus you don't have to stay poor (I believe He wants us to prosper in everything we do), but putting Him first and trusting His promises is the first step to true prosperity.
Jesus is my life-jacket and I'm holding onto Him as tightly as I can. I know He will bring me through high and dry.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Needy People

I need Jesus. Yes, I love Him and want Him in my life, but the real truth is that I NEED Him. I know what kind of person I am without Him. When Paul said "in my flesh no good thing dwells", he hit the nail on the head. On my own I am selfish and weak and almost every vice has some level of hold on me. I have experienced life without Him and I have experienced life with His help and His strength; I need Jesus! I don't want to ever live a day without Him! I want Him to lead and guide me, tell me where to go and what to do, and use my life to see that His will is done. I need Jesus; and so do you.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Rules and Relationship

When I was a very small child, I obeyed my parents rules because I didn't want to get into trouble; I didn't want to get a spanking or have my toys taken away. I didn't understand why there had to be so many rules and many times I figured my parents made rules just because they could. As I grew (in size and understanding), I began to see the reasons behind the rules. I saw that my parents made and enforced rules because they loved me and wanted to protect me from harm. Seeing the love behind the rules changed everything. I no longer had to wonder why the rules existed, I knew it was because my parents loved me and I began to obey their rules, not because I wanted to stay out of trouble, but because I loved my parents. Their love for me made me love them and I obeyed their rules because I didn't want to hurt them. I had gone from obedience because I had to, to obedience because I wanted to.
There's an old saying that goes like this: "rules without relationship equals rebellion". The relationship makes all the difference! When I was young, I obeyed the 10 Commandments because I was afraid not to. After I understood how much God loves me, I began to love Him in return and started cultivating a relationship with Him. Now I obey Him because I love Him. God didn't give His commandments just to boss us around; He wants us to be blessed and prosper and He wants us to be like Him! The commandments were given to show us that we need Him to live blessed and prosperous lives! We can't do anything on our own. Our relationship with Him is the most important thing in life!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Feelings of Inadequacy

There's a song performed by the group Audio Adrenaline called "Man of God". It's one of those songs that, when you listen to it, you say to yourself, "I know how he felt when he wrote that song!". The song is about a man's struggle with being a Christian and being a flesh-and-blood human at the same time. It is essentially a song about learning to accept God's mercy and grace when you've messed up.... again.
We all make mistakes. We all come up short of the mark now and then. We're human and as long as we're alive we're going to struggle with our human-ness. The flesh and the spirit are constantly struggling and we don't always follow the spirit as we should; sometimes we allow the wants of the flesh to win out. The chorus of the song says "Sometimes I'm a man of God; sometimes I'm alright. Sometimes I lay down, close my eyes, and pray to God.". I think we've all had nights like that. How we should live doesn't always jive with how we do live!
We have to learn to let grace do it's job. We all make the same mistakes and God knows we are only dust! He has told us that if we repent and ask for forgiveness, he'll not only forgive us, but he'll cleanse us from the unrighteousness that we brought upon ourselves as well! He'll not only forgive and forget, but he'll take away that dirty feeling in our consciences too! Another line of the song says "If I make it I'm a good man; am I a bad man if I fail? I know I'm never good enough, so I let grace prevail.". Those are true words to live by! Learn to let grace prevail; let grace do it's job!
I'm not saying we should live any old way we want to and expect God to like it. I'm saying that we shouldn't let past mistakes ruin the future. When we mess up we should run to God, not away from Him! Repent, accept forgiveness (don't forget to forgive yourself!) and keep on keeping on! Don't let something bad you did yesterday keep you from doing the good you can do today. If God is willing to forgive us, we should accept His mercy and be thankful.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Broken Machines

"Without your love I'm just a broken machine." - Newsboys

We tend to think of machines as being made of metal with gears and motors and things. But I think human beings are machines. We aren't alive on our own; we're not alive just because we want to be. We are animated by an outside source; God! The Bible says that Jesus lights every one who comes into the world. Without Him putting a spirit into our bodies, we would be lifeless! We are, in essence, spirit-animated biological machines. When our spirits leave our bodies, our bodies cease to function and we become lifeless machines. Doctors can keep the biological machine running with man-made machinery, but it's real life is gone when it's spirit has departed.
God created man's body from the dust of the Earth but it wasn't alive or animated until God breathed the breathe of life into it. At the point where God's breath (spirit) came into contact with man's body, a soul formed and man became a living being. We are alive because God wants us to be! And God doesn't owe us life, He gives it because He loves us.
Until we believe in Jesus as our savior, our spirit animates us, but it is not fully functioning. We are living, but broken, machines. Our spirits are supposed to be our link to God. We hear from Him and communicate to Him through our spirits. Because of sin, we are separated from God and our spirit can't do it's job. For all practical purposes, our spirits are dead to God. If something stops working right we say it is dead (because it is incapable of doing what it was designed to do). I would compare a sinner to a Ham radio set without an antennae; it still turns on, lights up and makes noise, but it is incapable of sending or receiving signals, which is it's purpose. It is a broken machine!
When we come to God on His terms (through Jesus Christ), fellowship with Him is restored and our spirits begin to function properly; but without His love, we're just broken machines.

Powered by ScribeFire.


It's How You Interpret the Data

Look around. Look at all the different kinds of living things. Life is everywhere! People of all colors and shades, male and female; animals galore; millions of species of plant life; all living here together on a great spinning orb hanging in space. We take it all for granted, but it's truly amazing when you stop to think about it.
I know a lot of people "believe" in evolution. They argue that we have no creator and that we have evolved from lower species over many years. They say they can't see how, in this day and age, anyone could believe in a God and in creation. They say we should have outgrown all that superstition by now. They point to scientific research and archaeological findings to prove evolution and disprove a creator.
I see the same scientific research and archaeological findings as proof that there must be a creator. I believe that the more our scientist learn about the complexities of life the more it proves there is a creator. How could anything this complex and interconnected just happen!? I don't think Darwin himself would believe in evolution if he were living today! When he proposed his theory, he had no way of knowing how intricately we are made. I'm sure he knew we were complicated beings, but he had absolutely no understanding of the wonderful things that we know today about how the human body works. We still know hardly anything about how and why our brains work the way they do! Just imagine what we'll know in 10 years!
I see evolution as the superstition, not God! Only an intelligent, creative, imaginative, loving creator could have built such a wonderfully intricate system.
It seems to me that everywhere our scientific research takes us, the Bible has already been there! Science proves God. The Bible says that no one has any legitimate reason to doubt God's existence; everything around us is proof of His intelligence and love!

Powered by ScribeFire.


New Heaven and a New Earth

I was taught as a young Christian that Heaven is a our great reward; that we will all live together in Heaven in the presence of God for eternity. I always took that as the truth since that is all I ever heard preached. And while I do look forward to seeing Heaven and being with the LORD, I believe the scriptures teach something considerably different about eternity than what I've always heard.
I believe we will see Heaven when Jesus returns or when we die, if we die before He returns. But I don't think that is where we will stay for eternity. We didn't come from Heaven, nor were we created for Heaven; we were created for the Earth, from the dust of the Earth. There will be a new Earth as well as new heavens above the Earth and all will be returned to the perfection of Eden. The new Jerusalem will come down out of Heaven (a 1500 mile cubicle) and the Lamb of God will be our King! I believe we will rule and reign along with Jesus in the new Jerusalem, on the new Earth, under the new heavens for eternity!
God's original plan was to create the Earth and rule over it from Heaven through us. I don't think His plan has ever changed. God knows the end from the beginning. He knew humanity would fall and would need a Saviour. God didn't send Jesus to redeem us so we could go to Heaven; He redeemed us so that we could do what He created us to do from the start: to rule over the Earth under His authority! God did not surrender the Earth to the devil. God will ultimately destroy the devil and his demons and will return the Earth to us and we will live here in glorified bodies forever with Jesus as our King!
Study the scriptures and see what lies ahead for us! Our Father in Heaven has everything worked out! He makes a way where there is no way! I'm looking forward to everything being made new and beautiful and perfect. I'm looking forward to being with Jesus forever. I'm looking forward to eternity!

Powered by ScribeFire.


God Speaks for Himself

God does not hate fags (nor would He call a human being a "fag")! Forgive my use of that "word", but I am quoting a sign which said "God Hates Fags!", held up by a church member during a rally to protest the war in Iraq . God hates sin. God loves people. The Bible is God's word to people and in it He speaks for Himself ; He doesn't need a multitude of "lower-court-judges" to speak for Him! As Christians, we are no one's judge. Yes, we agree with God's judgment against sin and evil, but we must remember that judging is His job, agreeing with Him is ours. If God says it is sinful, then it is! But God sent Jesus to die for the sin of the world so that we can be cleansed from it; He doesn't throw us away because we mess up and get entangled with sin! God loves people!
We are called to love people because God loves people. If we are His, He has shed His love abroad in our hearts.We must call sin sin and stand up for the truth, but we are never supposed to hate people. Anyone who hates their neighbor doesn't belong to God and they certainly don't speak for Him! Every human being, regardless of race, sex, or anything else, was created in God's image and Jesus died to save them from eternal separation from God.
At the judgment of the saints, Christians will answer to Jesus for every hateful word they speak. And if their hateful words cause someone to be lost, that persons blood is on their hands.

Powered by ScribeFire.

Fear Factor

The Bible says that the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. In other words, if we don't fear God, we have no wisdom (the fear of Him being the very beginnings of wisdom). If He is our loving Heavenly Father, why then should we be afraid of Him? Shouldn't we come into His presence unafraid and at peace knowing that it is His will and desire to fellowship with us?
I don't believe the Bible is talking about fear the way we humans think about fear and being afraid. When we think about being afraid of someone or something, we think of running away and avoiding something we believe is about to harm us. God loves us and He is not about to harm us, so why talk about fearing Him? Some say that the Bible isn't talking about fear, but reverence; we should be in awe of God and reverence Him, not fear Him. I agree that we should reverence Him and be in awe of Him, but I also believe the Bible is correct when it says we should fear Him. God is dangerous! Matthew 10:28 says that we should not fear those who can only kill the body, but fear Him who can destroy both soul and body!
To be wise and safe, we humans naturally assign everything and everyone in our lives a fear factor. The fear factor is determined by the potential for harm that person or thing is capable of causing us. In my life a grizzly bear would have a higher fear factor than a snake; a snake would have a higher fear factor than a spider; a spider would have a higher fear factor than a mosquito, and so on. What could possibly have a higher potential for harming me than an Almighty God?! God is the most dangerous being there could ever be!
If I fear God more than anyone or anything else why do I not run from Him?; why do I run to Him instead? I assign a high fear factor to a grizzly bear, but if He is in a cage, I know I am safe from him. I believe that God loves me and that His promises to take care of me and protect me are true. In effect, God has "caged" Himself in by His promises. I think that is why people who understand God's love run to Him and people who don't understand God's love run from Him.
When we give God the highest fear factor, that places everything and everyone else under Him, as they should be. Even though we know that God loves us and is for us, not against us, He still is the most potentially dangerous being there is. I love Him, but I fear Him.

Powered by ScribeFire.



There are arguments for God and arguments against God and none of them matter. I could give you a hundred reasons why I believe God, satan, heaven and hell exist and you could give me a hundred reasons why you believe they don't. Christian apologists are on TV and radio daily giving Bible scriptures, archiological findings, and fulfilled prophecy as reasons to believe. Atheist and agnostics are busy at work denying all that and giving their reasons why there is more likely an alien behind it all than a deity and selling evolution as the reason for everything.
None of these arguments matter. A person will either see God in everything or not see a god in anything. Arguments rarely convince anyone.
As they say, the proof is in the pudding. The end result will be it's own proof. In other words, things are the way they are and no manner of good argument can change it. One believes there is a God, a devil, a heaven and a hell. Another believes we are the result of chance and have evolved over time and when life is over, it's over; there's no heaven, no hell, no creator and no afterlife. At the end of these two lives the truth will be known and there will be no doubt remaining. The end will prove itself.
Decide for yourself TODAY! Don't look at the arguments; don't decide based on someone else's beliefs. Look around for yourself. The real evidence is there! Please don't place your eternal existence in the hands of someone's argument! Be honest with yourself and find the truth; today's decisions carry eternal consequences. Don't be led astray by fancy words and popular speakers; you won't be able to blame your decision on anyone else. As much as you love your parents, don't decide based purely on what they believe, whether they believe in God or not. Decide for yourself and let your own heart be the judge.
Arguments can be so persuasive and it's easy to just pick what's popular or maybe what your friends believe and not have to put any effort into it. Please don't do that. I believe in God and in everything the Bible says and I want you to believe it too because I want you to live forever. But I don't want you to believe what I believe just because I believe it and have persuaded you! I want you to settle the matter in your own heart and know that you know! It is the most important decision you will ever make and should be treated that way.
It is one thing to ask for, receive and interpret someone's opinion; it is another to accept a pat answer at face value without ever digging into it for yourself!
I write these things to Christians and Atheists alike. A Christian who doesn't know why they believe is not a believer, but a hoper. An atheist who doesn't know why they disbelieve is not an atheist, but a fool.

Powered by ScribeFire.



Real Christians go to church. I've heard that all my life and I've always believed it to be true. We need each other. We were created to work together; to draw strength from each other; to pray for each other. But it seems to me that more and more people are using the fact that they "go to church" as an excuse not to be what Christians are first and foremost supposed to be; lights! It's great to tell people that you go to church and talk about how wonderful your church is and to invite them to services. But regardless of what you say, they will be watching what you do! Talk is cheap and actions do speak louder than words!
Matthew 5:16 says,"Let your light so shine before men that they see your good works and glorify your father which is in heaven." Works don't get us into heaven, only faith in Jesus does. But our works are what people see! When we act like Jesus, people see Jesus! Our actions can bring glory to God or disgrace to God. Living a godly life is the greatest witness we have. Being merciful, kind, generous, faithful, caring, forgiving, uplifting and friendly will not only make people want what we have, but it will cause them to want to listen to what we say! In other words, live like Jesus and people will see Jesus!
Going to church is a needful thing, but we all know people who are there every time the doors are open and are ill-tempered and unpleasant to everyone in their everyday lives. They are the reason lots of people associate churches with hypocrites! And there are people who won't set foot in a church who will only see Jesus if we show them Jesus through our godly lives! The old cliche is true; we are the only Jesus people are going to see! They will judge Him by us!
James 1:27 says, "Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of God our father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world." To be like Jesus is to be helpful to those who can't help themselves (and who no one else seems to want to help) and to be unselfish and forgiving and merciful to everyone.
Church attendance is good, but don't let that be the sign of your Christianity. Let your light shine outside the church and let people see in your life the Jesus you serve.

Powered by ScribeFire.


John and Jesus

John 3:30 - "He must increase, but I must decrease."

After baptizing Jesus in the Jordan River, John told his followers that he had to decrease and Jesus had to increase. John had come into the world preaching repentance. His work was to "prepare the way of the LORD". Jesus came preaching "the kingdom of heaven is at hand" and said "be ye perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.".
John was saying, not only must I as a man decrease, but the message I came to preach must also decrease because a greater man and a greater message has arrived. John was a great man, but Jesus was the greater. Repentance is good, but perfection is better. According to Jesus, "Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist.". Jesus, on the other hand, was the son of God; the new Adam; the savior of the world. It is good to repent of our sins and be forgiven, but it is better to be perfect (mature) and not sin in the first place. Prevention is better than cure.
Thank God we can count on His grace, mercy and forgiveness. But we must not allow ourselves to think it's alright to sin because we can "make it right later". First of all, we are not guaranteed a "later"; secondly, it is not a sign of maturity for a Christian to think like that. As we let Jesus' message of perfection increase in our lives, we will be able to let John's message of repentance decrease because mature Christians will not give in so readily to the temptation to sin.

Powered by ScribeFire.



Have you ever prayed and asked God the Father to make you like Jesus? I have and I'm sure you have too. If you love Jesus you want to be like him. We know that Jesus pleased the Father and because we want to please Him too, we ask to be made into Jesus' likeness. I think it's a prayer that God answers because it's His will for all Christians to be like Jesus. Jesus is our role model.
But why is it that after praying that prayer we are surprised when unpleasant things start happening to us? People start to lie on us; they try to mar our reputations; good friends abandon us; the devil attacks our every human weakness. Did we not realize what we were asking for? Paul says in Phillipians 3:10 "that I may know Him (Jesus) and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings...". If we want to know Him in the power of His resurrection, we will also get to know Him in the fellowship of His sufferings! Remember what He went through?; His trusted friends abandoned Him; the "religious authorities" condemned Him; people lied about Him in court; the crowds sang His praises one day and shouted "crucify him!" the next!
When we ask to be like Jesus and mean it in our hearts, we will be. But, count the cost; the road is straight and narrow and not everyone will be willing to pay the price!

Powered by ScribeFire.



When God created Adam and Eve, he put dominion in their hearts. God placed them in the Garden of Eden and gave them dominion over all the animals and the garden itself. They were created to rule and reign over all things, under God's ultimate authority.
Many things changed after the Fall in the Garden. Our adversary, the devil, perverted every legitimate desire God gave us; food, sex, pleasure, dominion. God created eating to be enjoyable. He could have made food very boring and we would have just "refueled" every day. God created sex between a husband and wife to be enjoyable. Procreation could have been painful and dull instead. God could have created us to feel pain and lack of pain and left pleasure out altogether! God created us to enjoy our lives, but Satan has made perversions of the very things God meant for healthy pleasure! We have people who are literally eating themselves to death because they are "hooked" on food. We have people preying on young children sexually, infidelity in marriages and pornography is a multi-billion dollar industry because people are "hooked" on sex. Things created for our enjoyment are destroying us!
Dominion has been perverted as well. We were created to rule over the earth and all the animals, but always under God's authority. It is a "given" that He is the head of all things! But our desire to dominate has been perverted to make us want to rule our own lives even to the extent of denying God's right to rule over us! We were given rule over the earth and over the animals; we were never given rule over other people or over ourselves! God is our ruler! We are not our own!
Everything belongs to God because He created everything. The created thing has no legitimate right to say to the creator "You have no right to rule over me.". We are God's property whether we admit it or not. The irony is, if we let God rule over us, He will work everything together for our good. He is not a tyrant, He is our Father! His desire is to bless us and give us our desires!

Powered by ScribeFire.


The Kingdom

Jesus came preaching the Kingdom of God. Paul went about preaching the Kingdom of God. We are told to preach this Kingdom to all the nations. With all this talk about a kingdom, why do so many Christians seem to think Christianity is a democracy?
The USA is the greatest country that has ever existed and our form of government, democracy, is the best form of government ever known. Some people seem to think that because we see the USA as a Christian nation that the kingdom of heaven must be a democracy as well. It is not; it is a kingdom! Kingdoms play by different rules!
In a kingdom, the king is sovereign. He is all and all. He owns everything and everyone is under his supreme authority. Decisions are not made by majority vote, nor are they made by commissions or councils; all decisions are made by the king as he so desires.
Citizenship in a kingdom is not a right but a privilege and is at the behest of the King. The King is solely responsible to protect, feed and provide for every need of his citizens. The citizens are responsible for obeying and honoring their King, thus staying in right relationship with him (righteousness).
Study the scriptures and learn to see God's ways through the workings of a Kingdom and you will begin to see things differently. Many "mysteries" will be opened up to you and you will see answers to many of your questions about why things happen as they do.

Powered by ScribeFire.



Has God ever done something and you just didn't know how to deal with it? His ways are not our ways and sometimes He makes things happen, or lets things happen, and we just can't seem to fathom His reasoning! I believe one of the big reasons we struggle with God's decisions is that we don't understand mercy.
If three cars are driving down the highway and all three of them are speeding when they pass a police officer and he pulls one of them over and lets the other two go, is that unjust? Most people would say yes, it is. Human reasoning says that it is not fair. If the police officer let the two go because he knows them or is related to them or is biased for the two or against the one for any reason then, yes, it is unfair. But, if the officer randomly chose the one for no biased reason, then it is not unfair; one received justice while two received mercy! God is no respecter of persons. In other words, He loves everyone equally. He is not biased either for or against anyone. If one receives mercy and another receives justice, the one who received justice has no legitimate complaint; if he is guilty then justice is deserved! The fact that God chose to show mercy to the other one is not his business! God said "I will show mercy to whom I will show mercy." It is His to give as He sees fit!
In one parable a landowner pays the same wages to workers who worked only one hour as he pays to workers who worked all day long. Those who worked all day long complained that it was unfair. But the landowner said "Friend, I haven’t been unfair! Didn’t you agree to work all day for the usual wage? Take your money and go. I wanted to pay this last worker the same as you. Is it against the law for me to do what I want with my money? Should you be jealous because I am kind to others?". The fact of the matter is, God's mercy angers us if we are the ones who received justice. We have no legitimate complaint. If we are guilty then justice is just. But the fact that someone else received mercy while we received justice seems unfair to us.
We need to see things from God's perspective. We need to understand and remember that He is perfect. He is just and faithful and there is no darkness in him.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Burdens and Yokes

Come unto me all ye who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. - Matthew 11:28

The Pharisees and other religious men of Jesus' day were notorious for rules and regulations. They were always coming up with some rule, some addition to the laws of God, that would make people more holy. God's ten commandments became ten commandments with thousands of religious add-ons. The people of that time were under such a load of burdens that everyday life was difficult simply because of all the rules they had to remember and abide by! These rules were thought up by religious leaders to make people appear more holy. To them, appearance was everything! Jesus scolded them when he said in Matthew 23:4, "They bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not lift a finger to help.". The yoke of these laws was very hard on the people and they had no one to help them.
I believe we have many Pharisee wanna-bees around today; churches are full of them. Adding their own little spin to God's laws to make themselves appear more holy, more religious! Beware of these people; they will load you down with such a burden that you won't be able to bear up under it! Don't look to them for help in carrying the load and heaven help you if you stumble under the weight! They will stone you in a heart-beat for your failures!
Please remember this one thing; you will stand before God for yourself. You and you alone will answer for your actions (and inactions). You won't be able to blame someone else for your mistakes (my mother didn't love me; the devil made me do it; my DNA was corrupt), but you won't have some religious lawmaker standing there to condemn you either!; it will be you and God! The Bible tells us to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling. In other words, your relationship and fellowship with God is the most important thing in life and we'd better take it seriously, but that relationship is between you and God; no one else has the right to load you up with their rules and regulations!
I believe this is exactly what Jesus was talking about when he said "Come unto me all ye who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.". Jesus' yoke is easy and His burden is light. Take the burden off your backs that men have you carrying and take up Jesus' burden; it is easy and light! Jesus is your Saviour, not men! What does it matter if they think you are religious enough?! If Jesus is satisfied with you, then all is well with your soul!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Leave the Past in the Past

A wise and godly man once said, "Live your dreams, not your memories.". What excellent advice for us all! Too many times we allow our memories to destroy our dreams. We let the problems or mistakes of our past short-circuit our dreams for the future. We mourn over past sins and never get around to making our dreams come true!
The past is past. That's the short but true answer. There's nothing that can be done about it now. We can learn from our mistakes and avoid repeating them, but other than that, they're just excess baggage that will destroy our future. Let it go! Live your dreams, not your memories! We have control over what we will do, but none whatsoever over what we have done. If we continue to dwell on the past, the future will be tainted.
One of the ways satan gets the best of us is by making sure we don't forget the mistakes that we've made. He wants us to be continually reminded of the things we've done wrong and the things that have gone wrong for us. He wants to kill the future by injecting the past. He knows that he can't harm us, because we are protected by God's lovingkindness; so he tries to get us to destroy ourselves! And his plan works too many times! We curse our future by dwelling on our past! Something bad happens in our lives and satan tells us that we deserve it because of something we did sometime in our past. If we believe him, we will accept that bad thing and live it out even though it is not God's will for us! It's not about what we deserve; it's about God's grace! Grace is unmerited favor! It's a gift!
If we have asked for God forgiveness and repented of our sins, then our sins are forgiven and never brought up again (unless we bring them up!). God forgives and forgets! If he doesn't remember our sins and shortcomings, why should we!? We shouldn't! If God doesn't hold it against us, what right do we have to hold on to it?
Please stop letting the past rule your future. Let go of all that baggage and live your dreams. Stop believing satan's lies and live in God's truth. He has cleaned your slate and given you dreams and He means for you to live them out!

Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the plans I have for you; plans not to harm you, but to prosper you. Plans to give you hope and a future.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Not Trading Places

Some people seem to have everything; money, fame, friends, cars, etc. It seems as though good things just fall out of the sky right on their heads! Some are movie stars, some are business people, some are lawyers or doctors, some are politicians and some just inherited from someone else. They don't seem to have the struggles that we have. They don't know what it's like to run out of money before running out of bills. They don't know what it's like to have to order from the "99 cent menu" when you really would like the $6 burger with everything. They don't know what it's like to limit what you spend per child for Christmas when you want to get them everything on their list.
And what makes it really difficult to understand is how they can treat other people with such disregard and still prosper! They don't seem to care about anyone but themselves. They use their money to please themselves without giving a thought to anyone else. They can spend $1000 a night for a hotel suite knowing that people are sleeping in the alley in a cardboard box. They can spend $5000 a plate for a political luncheon knowing that some people put their children to bed hungry most nights. They do whatever it takes, cheat anyone they can, bend (or break) every rule, just to get ahead and stay ahead. Being wealthy is never enough for them; they want to be richer than anyone else. How can they live like that and prosper so much?
It is an age old question. Jeremiah and many of the old prophets cried out to God about the injustices of their time and asked God when he would repay people for their crimes against humanity. They asked God why he allowed these people to prosper when they were so evil. We are still asking those questions today.
I must admit, I wish I had some of their money. I get a little envious of their comfortable lives. And I wonder why they are allowed to keep prospering when they obviously don't care about anyone but themselves. But I would not trade lives with any of them! I would never consider, not for one microsecond, trading my life for theirs! God has blessed me with enough to live on. He has blessed me with good health and healthy, well-behaved children. He has saved me from Hell and given me everlasting life with him. Would I like to have more here on Earth? Yes, I would!; but not at the expense of my soul! I know where I am going when all this is over! And I wouldn't trade that for every penny ever minted and all the comforts and all the fame in all the world!
I am not saying that every person who is rich or famous is evil, nor am I saying that they are all going to Hell! I am no one's judge; God will judge us all! I am saying that even though you may not have everything they have here on Earth, but have Jesus, you have everything to look forward to! Don't ever consider trading your morals or your soul for money. Being rich and famous for 100 years could never be comparable to an eternity of peace and health and joy in the presence of God!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Father God

How cool would it be if your dad was the President of the United States?; Or maybe a Congressman or Governor or even Mayor? What if he was the CEO of a multi-billion dollar company or maybe the president of a huge bank? Think of the perks! Sure, the President of the United States is supposed to look out for and take care of the needs of the whole country, but think of how much more his own child would be given! I love and watch out for all the little children living in my small neighborhood, but my own children get my special attention, my very, very best! So just imagine what the children of these wealthy and important men would have at their disposal!
Well, guess what?; If you are a believer in Jesus Christ, your father is much more than any of those guys! Your father is God! He is the supernatural, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, creator of all things! Yes, it is true that God loves everyone in the whole world and that he sent his son Jesus to die for all; but those who choose to believe in Jesus and follow him are God's children and they get his special favor! The Bible says that we have an inheritance from God along with Jesus! Jesus is our brother (the firstborn among many brethren!) and we are God's family as sure as he is! That sounds almost too good to be true. Maybe that's why so few Christians realize and believe it! And maybe that's why so many of us live such desperate lives, poor and downtrodden, even though our father is Almighty God!
I'm not trying to take something that's not mine or ascribe to myself something I don't deserve. I am just repeating (and believing) what the Bible says. Faith in Jesus Christ saved me from sin and washed me clean and made me righteous in him. His Holy Spirit came and filled me and made me a new creature in Christ Jesus. I was born of his Spirit and made one with him and so now I am a child of God! It was all God's doing; None of it was because I deserved or earned it. But I will take it any way I can get it!
We need to learn to live as the children of God and enjoy his love, favor, blessings and all the benefits of being his children! I'm not talking about greed, if you're really his, you won't be greedy because that is not a family trait! I'm talking about a father giving to his children out of the love in his heart and his children receiving and enjoying what he gives. I don't love my heavenly Father because of what he gives, but because of who he is. But I will receive with joy and thanksgiving anything he wants me to have!
Psalms 103 says "Bless the LORD, Oh my soul, And forget not all his benefits....". There are benefits to being his child. It is his good pleasure to give to us all that we need. We must learn to enjoy him to the fullest.

Powered by ScribeFire.



We need to take a lesson from the trees. In the summer, trees put out beautiful foliage and deep green leaves. But in the winter they drop all their leaves and look so drab and gray, almost dead! It looks like winter really makes it hard on them.
But things are happening behinds the scenes (or should I say, underground) that we don't see. The trees are working on their root systems. Their roots are digging into the ground, tunneling down toward the warm, moist soil that lies way down deep. You can't tell by looking at their limbs or branches, but the tree is not only alive, it's vibrant! The tree uses this season to plan for the next!
The reason trees can put forth such beautiful flowers and leaves in the spring and summer is because of what they do in the winter. Next summer when the rains stop and the sun beats down on everyone with it's almost unbearable heat, the trees roots will be way down deep past the point where the sun dries up all the moisture! The rich, moist soil down deep feeds up through the branches into the leaves and allows them to be beautiful and bountiful!
We need to learn to let those cold, gray seasons in our lives become root growing times for us as well. Everyone goes through those cold, gray times in their lives. It's like winter to our souls! We feel so alone and useless! Those are the times that we need to draw near to Jesus. He is the vine and we are the branches; We get our life-giving nutrients from him. In those wintry times learn to grow on the inside and wrap yourself more tightly around him. Let your roots grow and increase in him. If we do that, we will find that when the sun does reappear, we will produce much more fruit and be much more "drought tolerant". The hot sunshine of this life won't be able to dry us out and damage us. We will be feeding on the deep, moist, cool soil way down deep in Christ Jesus!

Powered by ScribeFire.


He's still listening

Just words to another song that helps me each time I hear it. It is peace to my mind and strength to my soul to know that God is listening. He may say yes, he may say no, or he may say wait; but He's listening and he always answers.

God, our Father, once again,
I bow my head to pray.
You are my Father and my friend
and you hear every word I say.
A prayer for forgiveness, a desperate cry for help,
or praise flowing from a thankful heart.
Like each time before, I come knowing you're
still listening.

Conversations are two-sided; someone talking and someone listening. He's listening. Are you talking to him?

Powered by ScribeFire.



Would you like to meet someone who would never walk out on you for any reason? Someone who wouldn't just pretend to be your friend to get what they could out of you? Someone who would really stay with you through rags or riches, sickness or health, good times or bad? Someone who would stand beside you no matter who was looking? Someone who would never turn their back on you when someone they thought was better came along? Someone who would never abuse you (physically or emotionally or sexually) and would keep anyone else from doing those things as well? Someone who would give their life for you to protect you from anything bad? Someone who you could turn to even in the middle of a cold, dark, rainy night and know they would be there immediately. Someone who would tell you the truth and never keep secrets from you? Someone who you could confide in without fear of either them thinking badly about you or telling someone else? Someone who has could actually do anything you asked them to do because they are unlimited in ability and knowledge? Someone who would love you and ask nothing more than your love in return?
Someone like that exists. His name is Jesus and he's looking to meet you. Let me introduce you; Friend, this is Jesus; Jesus, this is my friend. They're looking for what I was looking for when someone introduced me to you. Help them as you've helped me. Love them as you've loved me. Protect them as you've protected me. Help them get past all the junk they've heard or read or imagined, so they can see the real you.

Consider yourself introduced. You're in good hands now.

Powered by ScribeFire.


About Me

I will live or die by the word of my God. I will stand or fall by his word. My trust is in him and him alone. My life and everything I have belongs to him and I entrust my eternal soul to his care. I am not my own; I am his. He created me, he redeemed me and I give myself to him of my own free will. I do not make my own decisions, I do not demand my own way and I do not live by my own understanding. He is my God, my Father, my friend, my King, my strength, my peace, my wisdom, my Saviour, my healer, my provider, my shepherd and my constant companion. I will never be ashamed that I have given everything to him. He is faithful and true. His promises are yes and amen. He has a plan for me, to bless me and keep me and bring me to a good end. I believe.

Powered by ScribeFire.



What a mountain is depends upon the attitude of the person looking at it. To some people a mountain is an obstacle, something huge that blocks their way; It is an impediment to their travels. To other people a mountain is a challenge; It is something to be conquered. Sure, it's in their way, but the challenge of overcoming it is thrilling! They look forward to the next one! To other people a mountain is a thing of beauty; It's not in their way, it's where it should be and it's wonderful! Climbing to the top is good exercise, the natural beauty is peaceful and relaxing and the view from the top is extraordinary!
Sometimes your blessing is on the other side of the mountain and you need to learn how to move it. Sometimes your blessing is on the top of the mountain and you need to learn how to climb it. Sometimes your blessing is the mountain and you need to learn how to enjoy it. Wisdom is knowing the difference. Thank God for mountains.

Powered by ScribeFire.


The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

One of the wonderful things about the Bible is that God doesn't sweep bad stuff under the rug. The great heroes of the Bible are presented in "living color", the bad along with the good! God doesn't show only the great things these people did, but the bad things as well and that is a great comfort to me. I'm not always goody-goody; there are times when I falter. It's good to know that God doesn't throw me away as damaged goods because of it!
Moses committed murder.King David committed murder and adultery. Noah got drunk and passed out the first day off the ark. Abraham lied and said his wife was his sister (more than once!). Peter cursed and then said he didn't know who Jesus was. All these examples show us that God uses real people just like you and me! He knows we are just dust! We are flesh and blood and as long as we are flesh we will have to deal with the lusts of our flesh. There will be times that we won't fair too well in that department! But, God is faithful! If we will judge ourselves, repent, confess our sins and ask forgiveness... forgiveness will always be there!
The great people of the Bible aren't great because they never failed or did anything wrong; they're great because they trusted God. They admitted when they were wrong and asked God to forgive them and never to leave them. I know that he will do the same for me, because he doesn't respect one person more than another.
If the Bible was a fake, made up by men, they would have taken great care in presenting only the best things about their "religion". It is just one more evidence of the Bible's legitimacy that it shows the good, the bad and the ugly!

Powered by ScribeFire.


We don't need answers....

Have you read the book of Job lately? A lot of people don't like to read Job because they really don't know what to make of it.We read the Bible looking for answers and this book seems to raise more questions than it give answers! The book of Job can be a tough read!
Job and his friends talk and talk about why they think Job is having such horrible problems. His friends are very accusative and Job is at a total loss as to why these things have happened. He begins to despise the day he was born. Sound familiar? While most of us have never been through what Job went through, we have been in that place where things are so tough that we wish we had never been born at all! After God lets them run their mouths, he comes on the scene to speak. He lets Job know that he is God and that he didn't have (or need) Job's help in creating the world and everything that has been created. He lets Job know that he and his friends are wrong in their thinking. You would think that at that point, God would say something like, "You are all wrong in your opinions about why these things have happened. Here is the real reason why.....", and then proceed to tell them why. But God doesn't do that. He never really gives them the answer!
I think the reason I enjoy reading the Book of Job is that it doesn't give answers. It lets us know that there aren't always easy answers to be had. Sometimes things happen in life that seem pointless, meaningless, and we never figure out why they were allowed to happen! The book affirms God's righteousness, faithfulness, power and glory and let's us know that he is in control and we should trust him always!
I learned something a long time ago that has helped me through many hard times. I see that same lesson being taught to Job; We don't always need the answers..., sometimes we just need to know that God hears our questions! It is enough for me to know that when I pray, when I cry out, God hears me. He hears me and he loves me. He is in control of my life and I can trust him. He may work things out in a strange way, but he will always work things out for my good! That's where I find true peace!
Read Job again and keep in mind that God is truly God and he is working behind the scenes on your behalf. No matter what befalls you, trust in him and he will make things right again. A s matter of fact, just like in Job's case, he will make things better than they ever were before!


Missing the Mark

Did you ever go to take out the trash and find trash lying around the perimeter of the trash can? Sometimes I find about half as much trash in the floor around the can as I find actually in the can! I tell my teenagers that they need to take their time and be a little more careful and they always say "Well we tried to get it into the can; I guess me just missed it a little bit.". The problem is that they (and sometimes my wife and I as well) are throwing our trash in the general direction of the trash can, not in the trash can! We get in a hurry and don't watch what we're doing as we should!
I believe we do the same thing in our Christian lives. I think we get in a hurry and don't always do as we should. In the Bible, Paul cautions against missing the mark. I don't think missing the mark is a blatant, purposeful sin, but a thoughtless, hurried, not doing things just right kind of thing. We're living our lives in the general direction of righteousness, but not taking the time to be exact about it. It's like the trash thing,... close, but not right in it! That is a dangerous (not to mention lazy) way for Christians to live! The Lord is looking for a spotless church without wrinkle or blemish, not a fairly clean, only slightly wrinkled church that doesn't have too many spots on it!
The Bible says that it's the little foxes that spoil the vines. We need to take a close look at ourselves and make adjustments; A bunch of little things can add up to a great big thing! We won't miss the mark so often if we take better aim!

Powered by ScribeFire.



There is hope. Times can be tough and things can go extremely wrong, but there is hope. People can let you down, do you wrong, leave you high and dry, but, there is hope. Situations can arise that seem insurmountable, but there is hope. Life can throw a pretty mean curve ball sometimes, but there is hope. Why do I sound so optimistic? There is hope because there is God!
My life is a living testimony to his faithfulness and grace. There's not enough space on this blog to tell of all the wonderful things he has done for me. I could tell of countless times when there was no way out and yet he made a way. I could tell of times when doctors said those dreaded words , "I'm sorry. We've done all we can do." and yet I live. I could go on and on. I'm not spouting religious propaganda, I've lived these things out in my own life. And I say... there is hope.
As long as there is breath in me to pray, I know I don't have to give up. I am not at the mercy of people, situations or circumstances. I am at the mercy of God! He is faithful to hear my prayers and help. He has proven himself time and again.
Don't give up.... pray. Ask for help and expect it. He wants you to want his help and he gives his grace abundantly and cheerfully. I don't know what you might be going through, but I know that there's no small problems when they're your problems. Someone else may have small problems, but when it's happening to us, they seem much bigger. It doesn't matter how big the problem, God is bigger! He is able and willing to help. Please let him help you, please; all you have to do is ask.

Powered by ScribeFire.


When I'm Worthy....

I've heard people say, "When I get my life cleaned up I'll start going to church.". People seem to think that going to Jesus with a messed-up life is somehow sacrilegious. They think that Jesus is going to reject them because they're not "good" people! That's like saying "I've got to get my hands good and clean, then I can use the soap."! You can't get your messed-up life straightened out without Jesus!; That's why you're so messed up to start with! Jesus isn't looking for "good " people, just people!
The deceiver tells us that we need to clean up before going to Jesus. We need to stop doing all the bad things we've been doing first and then we will be ready to approach Jesus. He says that because he knows that without Jesus' help, we're never going to get cleaned up! It's a trick!
The Bible teaches that we need to repent and believe; that's all! To repent means to turn around, to go the other way. Turn from your ways and confess your need for a Saviour and Jesus will become your Saviour and he will do all the cleaning! Jesus said that it was the sick people who need a doctor, not the well ones! Wouldn't it be silly to say "I don't want to go to the doctor sick; I'll wait until I'm well and then I'll go see him."?!
Don't wait. You need Jesus now; We all do! Let him give you the strength to clean up. And then use that strength to stay cleaned up!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Seed Sowers

"You Christians are so conceited; you want everyone to believe like you do!"
It's not conceit, it's love! We don't want you to believe in Jesus just because we do; we want you to believe in Jesus because we believe he is the only way to eternal life and we want you to be with us in Heaven! If we didn't love you, we wouldn't care what happens to you!
I had to find my way to Jesus. I didn't start life off as a believer. I have been on both sides of the equation and so I know from personal experience which is better. I tried lots of other things, read many books which offered many different philosophies and heard many opinions about how to best live life. After all was said and done, I chose Jesus. I believe he is the way, the only way. You have to choose for yourself and that's the way God wants it. He tells us to "work out our own salvation with fear and trembling". In other words, be actively engaged in finding out for yourself which path leads to Heaven because what happens to you after this life is over is what's really important. If you live to be 100 years old on this Earth what is that compared to eternity after this life is over!? It's just a drop in the ocean!
I don't ask you to believe what I believe just because I believe it. It's not the right way just because it's the way I chose; I chose it because it is the right way! It is not my job to convince you or to pressure you. I am only required to tell you the truth; the decision is yours and yours alone to make. Besides, Jesus doesn't need a sales pitch, just an introduction! He will then speak for himself. We are called to sow seed; God is responsible for making it grow.
Please don't let immature Christians dissuade you from Jesus by their sometimes over-the-top zeal. They mean well; it's just hard to hold back your passion and excitement when you're life has been so radically changed for the better. You want everyone to feel the peace and contentment that you are feeling! You wouldn't not go into a restaurant because someone was standing at the door telling you how great the food is would you?! No, you would probably appreciate the heads up! We're not trying to recruit you so there'll be one more Christian in the world, we just want to share with you the greatest thing we have ever found, which is Jesus! As one man said, "We're just hungry people trying to tell other hungry people where we found food."!

Powered by ScribeFire.



MaybeI just don't understand.
I lay my hands on the sick and pray for them in the name of the Lord expecting them to recover, but you tell me that God doesn't heal anymore, that all those things passed away with the apostles and the early church. I believe I will receive what I pray for when I pray and you label me "name it and claim it" and say it doesn't work like that. I look excitedly forward to the Rapture of the Church and you mock me and say I'm an escapist.
How many verses of my Bible do I need to mark out with my permanent marker because God doesn't do that anymore? How many pages do I need to tear out to purge my reading of things I shouldn't do anymore because those things have passed away? How many of the things Jesus did (remember, 'these things I do, ye shall do'?) should I just forget about trying to do because he didn't mean that literally? I don't think I understand.
Maybe God doesn't do that anymore because he wants to do that through us and we've quit doing anything! Maybe those things have have passed away because when you don't use it, you lose it! Maybe we say he didn't mean that literally to mask the fact that we just don't have faith to believe in anything anymore!; or maybe I just don't understand.
Jesus said "Many good works I shewed you from my Father, for which of those works do you stone me?". Enough stones already!; the proof is in the pudding! If people are being healed, it is God who is healing them, even if you say it can't be done! If people's prayers are being answered, it is God answering them, for all good things come from him! If we choose to believe "every word that proceeds from the mouth of God" and God is honoring our faith, just pass on by and leave us to our folly! He will judge us when the time comes and I am quite alright with that.

Powered by ScribeFire.


Why, God?

We have a hard time understanding God. I believe many times it's because we try to project our way of thinking onto him. We think that he thinks like we do, but he is not a man; He is God and he sees things differently.
God is almighty, ever-present, all-knowing, truth, love, and justice. That is a rather short list of his attributes. The one fact that really seems to throw us for a loop is this: God never expresses one attribute at the expense of another.
Let me give you an example. You tell your child not to run in the house (because you see potential for harm) and warn him that he will be punished if he disobeys. He runs in the house anyway. He falls, scrapes his knee and begins to cry. You run to him and you clean and bandage his knee. But because he is hurt and crying, you don't punish him. You have expressed your love at the expense of justice and truth. God doesn't do that and that confuses us. We think of God as a Father just like us, only better! But God is not just like us, only better; He is above us, beyond us, different in a way that we can't even conceive!
Dig into the scriptures and find out for yourself who God is and how he does things. He expresses himself in the New Testament through Jesus and in the Old Testament through his dealings with his people. Don't project the way you would think onto God and don't take someone else's opinion of how God thinks. Seek him for yourself!

Powered by ScribeFire.



God is faithful. Those are the three most beautiful words in the English language. I have courage to face every new day because I believe those words are true. I have peace to lay down and sleep at night with no worries and no fears because I believe in his faithfulness. He who hath promised is faithful!
It's his faithfulness in spite of my unfaithfulness that really impresses me.The fact that his faithfulness isn't contingent upon my being faithful is mind boggling! But then, he is a God of covenant, not contract! I'm not saying that I can act any old way I want to and expect God to come running to my rescue; I'm saying that faithfulness is part of his character and he never acts out of his character. I may sin and break fellowship with him; I may lose that 'closeness' that I feel with him; but He will never leave me alone. And out of his faithfulness he makes a way for me to repent and come back to him. If he left me every time I've left him, I would have been alone now for years! I am truly grateful that he doesn't let go of me just because I wander off. I don't intentionally take advantage of his faithfulness, but I mess up from time to time and goof things up pretty badly.
Maybe you've done something goofy in your life. Maybe you've been told that God doesn't love you or that he has abandoned you because of your many mistakes. God is faithful! He has not left you alone; He is there! Your broken fellowship keeps you from 'feeling' his presence, but he is there I promise you! Repent and ask him to cleanse you from all your sins. He will restore you. You may be miles away, but it's only one step back! God is faithful!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Wanting Something

Do you have friends or family who only come around when they need something? I do too. When I look up and see them coming, I know they've got some kind of problem they need help with. I don't care to help them and I always do, but it would be nice if they came to see me now and then just because they like me. It kind of makes you feel used, doesn't it?
Friends spend time with each other because they enjoy each other's company. Families should love each other just because they're blood. Spending time with someone shows them that you care; after all, what do you have that's more precious and irreplaceable than your time? Going to see someone when you're not after anything but their company lets that person know how much you value them!
There are Christians who only go to God when they're sick or in trouble. They never pray until hard times hit. Christians are not only God's friends, but his family as well. Spending time alone with him every day, especially when we're not asking for something, tells him that we really care. It lets him know that we're after him, not just the things he can give us. It's not that he minds our asking for what we need; I believe it is his great pleasure to give us our heart's desires. But to only hear from us when we're in need must make him feel used just like it does us!
Spend some time with your Heavenly Father today. Just go to him and talk to him about your life. Tell him how things are going. Fellowship with him; communicate with him one on one. Sure, he knows what's going on in your life without you telling him, but that's not the point. He's looking for fellowship, not information. It's not what your saying, but just that your there talking with him. We were created to enjoy him and be enjoyed by him!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Brother Bashing

I absolutely hate to see one Christian bash another! I know the world thinks we're all a little wacko, but they really don't understand us. The Bible even says that God's ways are foolishness to the world. But for one Christian to talk badly about another Christian's beliefs is unacceptable.
I heard a world renowned evangelist say on TV, "If you believe stuff like that, you're a fool!", talking about something a particular denomination does in their church services. First of all, who is he to judge someone else's servant. Those people serve God, not him! If they are to be judged, let God judge them!; they belong to him! Secondly, the Bible often tells us to do something and then says "...and even more so to the brethren.". We are to be especially kind and generous and helpful to our brothers and sisters! Thirdly, Jesus says that people will know we are his because we love each other! Fool is not a term of endearment! Lastly, a house divided against itself can't stand. If we can't agree, let's at least agree to disagree so that we show a united front! We are much more alike than we are different.
We are brothers and sisters and we will spend eternity together. We may as well learn to get along now. Besides, what ever happened to the old adage: "If you can't say something good, don't say anything at all."?

Powered by ScribeFire.


Help for Sale

I have a pet peeve. I hate to see a Christian brother or sister on TV talk about a book they've written that will "change your life!" only to find out that it costs $19.95. If I need my life changed but I don't have $19.95, am I just out of luck? If I'm not only messed up but poor as well, what then? Add to that the hurtful knowledge that there is help out there, I just can't afford it!
I know that books, tapes and CD's are sold all the time to raise funds. And I know that those funds are used to send missionaries, build churches, feed the hungry and all kinds of other wonderful and godly things. But to build up someone's hope and then attach a price to it!; I just don't see it as being the "Christian thing to do"!
It seems to me I remember Jesus saying to his disciples, "Freely you have received, freely give." Anything a Christian has that is any good, he received it from God and it was free.You may say "Well, all the money I make goes to God." God doesn't need your money, he needs you to help make someone's life easier! If you do that, he'll cause the money you need to come in!
There has got to be a better way of doing things. I wonder if I will ever see someone appear on TV and say "This book will make such a difference in you life, it will bless you and help you so much, that I am selling my house to get enough money to give a copy of it to anyone who needs it!" Now that is the Christian thing to do!

Powered by ScribeFire.


The Proof of Love

Giving is the proof of love. Talk is cheap; anyone can say "I love you." Giving, on the other hand, costs the giver something and only those who truly love are willing to do it. How many marriages fail after a short period of time even though two people promised to love each other "'till death do us part"? Marriage means giving and they weren't willing to give. Lust is taking and no giving; Love is giving with no thought to taking. It's nice to receive, but people who really love give because they love, not to get something in return.
People who say they love but refuse to give, are mistaken. When you love, you will always want to give. Jesus proved his love by giving his life. Our parents prove their love by giving their time, money and protection. A believer proves his/her love by giving control of his/her life to God. Husbands and wives prove their love by giving up their "singleness" in favor of their new union; they essentially give themselves to each other!
True love never dies because true love never stops giving. True love is a covenant, not a contract. A contract says "I will do my part as long as you do your part."; Love says "I will do my part regardless of whether you do your part or not.". Maybe that helps explain our high divorce rate. People are making contracts instead of covenants.
I believe that until we learn to love God, we can't really love anyone else. When you give your whole life away, giving anything else is easy. When we have given everything we are, giving anything we have is simple. God is love and when we have him we understand what love really is!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Not Welcome

Sometimes I think about the people who settled this country.They were hard-working, sensible people who came here looking for freedom; freedom to worship God, freedom to think and speak as they wanted, freedom to have their own opinions about things, freedom to live their lives as they wished without government interference. They were people who expected everyone to pull their own weight, but would help their neighbor when he couldn't help himself. They were people of character who believed in God and hard work; people who took pride in themselves and in their ability to run their own lives. And then I think.... those people would not be welcome in the United States of America today! The very people who made this the greatest country in the world would not be welcome.Their superstitious ideas and simple-minded way of seeing things would not be tolerated! Talk about politically incorrect!; these people actually believed in right and wrong! They actually believed in God and worshiped Him! They actually believed that people were responsible for their actions and punished them when they broke the law! They had such strange ideas! What kind of country could be built on ideas like those!
We have pretty much abandoned every idea they held dear! We belittle and even prosecute anyone who would dare return to such beliefs! We've progressed beyond their simple-minded ways!
We need to remember that when you pull the foundation out from under a three-story house, even the top story falls! It doesn't matter how high and lofty we think we have built up this country, they built the foundation. And if the foundation crumbles, the whole thing will come down!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Too Late Now

"A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with an argument." Rob Walford

The argument that God doesn't exist won't matter to someone who has felt his awesome presence. The argument that God doesn't talk to people anymore won't matter to someone who has heard his voice deep down inside himself. The argument that God doesn't heal people anymore won't matter to someone who has felt his touch and had pain and disease disappear. The argument that God doesn't care about people, he just sits in Heaven and watches things unfold, won't matter to someone who has had their prayers answered and a way made where there was no way before. Experience trumps argument every time!
It's too late now to tell me that God won't or can't or doesn't want to. He has already ruined all those arguments in my life. He has saved me; I have felt his manifest presence; He has healed me from disease; He has made a way out of horrible situations where none existed before; He has used me to bless others! I am a man with many experiences, so the arguments against God are worthless. God was, is and is to come!
The Bible says that those who come to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. First, we must believe that He is. Second, we must believe that when we seek Him, we will find Him and he will give us what we need. Some people never get past the first thing. Some people believe that God exists, but don't believe that He is willing to help. The Bible says we must fulfill both criteria to come to God.
I am not close-minded. I just know what I know. I am convinced of what I have experienced. An argument against my experiences won't sway me. It's too late now for that!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Faith Moves

The test of faith is the movement it causes. Or, as James puts it, "faith without works is dead...". If we say we have faith, but it never moves us to do anything, we have no faith. Talk is cheap and easy, movement cost sacrifice and effort.
Works don't save us (the just shall live by faith) and works don't make us righteous before God (Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him as righteousness). But works prove that we truly are living by faith and that we have God's righteousness. We get the cart before the horse as they say. We tend to think that the good things we do produce righteousness, when actually, it's the righteousness that comes as a free gift from God through faith in Jesus that causes us to do the good things we do.
You've heard it said that we aren't saved by good works, but saved to do good works. It's like the story of the two natives in the jungle of Brazil who saw a man water skiing behind a power boat. They thought the reason the boat was going so fast was because the man behind it was pushing it with the rope! If we say we have faith, but that faith isn't causing us to do something, we are fooling ourselves! You can't see faith, but you can see the movement that having faith causes! You can't see life, but the movement of the body proves that life is there! You can't see the wind, but when you see the leaves dancing around and the flags rustling you know the wind is blowing! Faith moves us! If there's no works (movement), then there's no faith.

Powered by ScribeFire.


The Company You Keep

It is a fact that people tend to judge you by the company you keep. In other words, if you hang out with trouble-makers, people will probably label you a trouble-maker too. Is it fair?; probably not! But that's how it is.
My post today doesn't concern watching who we hang out with, although that would certainly be worthwhile. This post concerns those who call themselves "Christian" and then live any old lifestyle they want. They say that they pray and hang out with Jesus and they eagerly associate themselves with him, but don't live as he said to live. Jesus once said "Why do you call me 'Lord, Lord' and do not do what I say?"! If you don't obey him, why do you call yourself his?
People who are not believers in Christ are judging Jesus by the lives of those who call themselves by his name. Talk about not being fair! Maybe they don't realize it, but they are defaming his name and one day they will have to answer to him for it. I believe they will also be held accountable for the blood of anyone who decided against trusting Jesus because of what they saw these people doing! People are watching us every day to see if we have what they are looking for, or if we are just hypocrites.
None of us are perfect. We all make mistakes. But when we do, we need to make it right with God quickly. We need to ask him to help us reflect his image better and carry his name with honor.

Powered by ScribeFire.


The Heart of a Fool

Psalms 14:1 "The fool has said in his heart, 'There is no God'." (NASB)

I have often wondered why people fight so hard to prove that there is no God. They go to extreme lengths to say "There is no God". They are willing to take a much greater leap of faith to believe against God than they accuse us of taking when we say there is a God! Most, if not all, of the so-called "proofs" against God's existence have been shot full of holes by the same science that we have always been accused of denying! The outright anger one runs into when talking about God's existence is overwhelming. Some people not only don't believe in God, they don't want anyone to believe in God and they're determined to prove that he does not exist at any cost!
I have come to understand that it's not just God that these people are against. It's not, as they proclaim, that they think religion is pure superstition or that man "made God up" to solve mysteries they could not solve. I believe the reason is as old as the world itself; people don't want to be ruled over! People don't want to be told what to do! Just as the people cried out in one of Jesus' parables "we will not have him rule over us!", so people are crying out still today. If there is a God, then he surely has the right to tell us what to do. If he created us and is watching over us every day from Heaven, he has the right to expect our obedience. People want to do "whatever is right in their own eyes" and not be told what is right and what is wrong. If they can disprove God, man can rule over himself without battling their conscience.
Not believing in God will never make him not exist. It's like a child who puts his hands over his face and thinks that no one can see him! God is, always has been and always will be! I AM THAT I AM is his name! Science and archeology are continuously proving the Bible true. The day is coming when there will be enough proof for anyone because we will be standing before God. He will be right there in front of us! Wouldn't we feel foolish saying "I didn't know you were real."?!

Powered by ScribeFire.


Why Am I Here?

We all have a purpose. We all have a mission. We all need to have a vision. None of us are mistakes, contrary to what we may have been told. We are here for a reason. God gave us life for a purpose, his purpose! He didn't cause us to be alive just to have something to do! And I firmly believe he didn't give us life and then say "Now what am I going to do with this one?". He's not waiting to see what we become, he's waiting to see if we become what he created us to become! Will we seek his will and catch a vision for our lives or will we just exist and let life live us!?
A great man of God once said that if we catch God's vision for our lives and begin to live that vision, the world will make a place for us. I believe there is something special about each one of us , something unique that God has placed within us. When we find that thing, the world will see it's need of us and make room for us. I know that as Christians we are not of this world system, but we do live in this world and we are called to make a difference here. We are salt and light. When we find that uniqueness in ourselves and live it out, God will bless the world through us!
Maybe your mother or father told you that you were a mistake; they are wrong! Maybe a teacher or someone else in authority made you feel like you weren't as good as everyone else; they are wrong! Maybe you have told yourself that you are insignificant; you are wrong! God gives life and not one person has ever been born into this world without his giving them life. What we do with that life is up to us, but he has given us purpose! Treasure is worth digging for, so we need to dig!
If you know your purpose; if you have a vision for your life, go for it! God will help you! He has placed in your life everything you need to fulfill your purpose! If you don't know your purpose, ask God to show you what it is. He knows! and he doesn't mind your asking! "If any of you need wisdom, you should ask God, and it will be given to you. God is generous and won't correct you for asking." James 1:5 CEV
You are important, as important as anyone else on Earth! You have a purpose and a mission and a vision! The world needs your gifts and talents whether it knows it or not! You are a gift from God to the world! No one can do what you can do like you can do it, you are as unique as your fingerprints!
I am not trying to stroke your ego or "pump you up" mentally. I just want you to see your true value. You have a mission and if you don't complete it, the whole world will be lacking because of it.

Powered by ScribeFire.