Change

What was your first phone like? I remember seeing the old wooden phone with the crank on the side and the ear piece connected by a wire. Now I have a smart phone that has more functions than many of my old computers, what a transformation the telephone has gone through. What kind of changes have we gone through since we have accepted Christ?

Romans 12:2 (NIV)
2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Water All Around

A friend was stuck out in the bay in his air boat. A hose came loose and the motor overheated because it lost its water. While there was water all around the motor, there was none to be found in the motor when it needed it. When we lose our love, it is easy to overheat. When we overheat, we can burn up relationships. The best way to keep the love of Christ in our hearts is to have a daily time with our Lord.

James 4:7-10 (NIV)
7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
8 Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
9 Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

Praise The Lord Today

David’s life is an example to the fact that God doesn’t always change your situation, but He does have all that it takes to help you through the hard times. Are you going through tough places and difficult times right now? I encourage you to read the words of David. Can you see him dancing and rejoicing over the incredible thought that God can meet all of his needs and provides whatever it takes to get through each day. Ask God to give you that same spirit of joy as you realize His sufficiency to meet your every need. And then as David did, remind yourself to praise the Lord.

Psalm 103:1-5 (NIV)
1Praise the LORD, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
2 Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits--
3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion,
5 who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.

42 Years

It has been 42 years since my dad passed away. There has hardly been a week that has gone by that I don’t recall a word of advice, a memory, or a picture of my dad flashes in my mind. I was blessed to have had a great relationship with my dad. Yes, there were tears shed at his passing and many times I long for his presence, but one day we will gather new memories. There is comfort in knowing loved ones have eternal life.

Don’t pass up an opportunity to share the greatest news.

" … He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away. And He who sits on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’" Revelation 21:4-5a (NASB)

John 10:28, "I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them ou t of my hand." (NIV)

A Broken Egg

A number of people around me raise chickens and give away their eggs. Karen and I are blessed to be recipients of such generosity. I have found that an egg that is never broken only rots with-in. The value of an egg is when it is broken. An omelet, hard boiled, scrambled or a new born chick all come from broken eggs.

Psalm 51:17 (NIV)
17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

Tour Guide

I grew up near Galveston and went there quite often. You might say that I knew my way around the island. This past year I joined a group who went on a tour, and I learned so much about the island. Our tour guide not only showed us short cuts to getting around the island but taught us interesting facts. We were able to see and experience sights that I never had access to before. For years I had missed out because I never followed a tour guide.

The more we allow God to be our tour guide through life, the more we will be blessed.

Psalm 48:14 (NIV)
14 For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.

The Band

The local high school band can be seen practicing their marching in the school parking lot just before the start of a new school year. How well they do practicing in the school parking lot shows up on the football field on Friday nights. Hundreds of fans like me sit high up in the stands watching the band’s every move. When someone messes up their marching, it is easy to see from the stands.

As believers we have people watching our steps, when we mess up it has an effect on the Kingdom. Accountability partners, studying God’s Word and prayer are great activities to do before we start the day.

Galatians 5:25 (NIV)
25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

Ball Fields

While at the baseball and softball fields this week, I saw hundreds of children playing. I wondered how many of those precious children have been or even will be brought to the feet of our Lord. I believe that many parents invest their time and funds to help their children succeed in a sport that may be a part of their lives for ten to twenty years. What about an investment in their eternity?

Luke 18:16 (NIV)
16 But Jesus called the children to him and said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

Matthew 16:26-27 (NIV)
26 What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?
27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done.

What We Say

What would our week look like if we began to speak every word from God’s perspective rather than our own? For this week, let’s be intentional to look at every single situation through the lens of God and let the words that flow from us come directly from the One who created us.

“Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.”

Psalm 141:3

Ma Bell

Means of communications have changed drastically over the years. My grandmother was a switchboard operator for Northwestern Bell Telephone Company. She and her co-workers were needed to connect people to the party to whom they wanted to speak. Today, we use wireless phones, something we only dreamed of when I was a teenager. What will communications be like when my grandchildren are my age? The only means of communication that has not changed over the years is talking to our Lord. We never need someone else to connect us, nor are we ever out of range.

Psalm 34:15: “The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry.”

Hope in God

Things seem so dreary as I think of what life will be like for my grandchildren when they grow up. However, if I don’t focus on the things of this world and remember that my God will walk with His people and will bless them as well. The future looks bright for those whose eyes are on our Lord.

Isaiah 44:3 (NIV)
3 For I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.

Little Things Make a Difference

At 5:39 this morning I received a little text that made a big impact on my morning. A friend inspired by God, sent me an encouraging little text message. We may not know what people are facing or what they might be dealing with, but our Heavenly Father does. When He whispers a word of encouragement or shows you an act of kindness, don’t brush it off. Thank you for making a difference.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV)
11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

Grandpa

There is nothing sweeter then for my grandchildren to run to me with open arms, wanting to spend time with me. This weekend Karen and I enjoyed sometime with one of our sons and his wonderful wife and their son, my grandson. He was a little fussy so everyone strived to please him and win his affection. After a while he walked up to me with one of his little crackers and handed it to me. Then a few minutes later he ran up to me with arms extended for me to pick him up. I had nothing to offer him as I had fed the dog the cracker. He just wanted to spend time with me.

How many times do we run to our Heavenly Father wanting nothing but to spend time with Him.

1 John 2:28 (NIV)
28 And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming.

1 Corinthians 1:9 (NIV)
9 God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.

LOVE

Love

When I go to the dentist, I try to relax. I have to remind myself that it is only an hour visit and they are not out to hurt me. But it is a struggle to relax and not tense up. Life is a lot like my visits to the dentist. There are things that get me worked up and make it hard for me to show the love of Christ. I need to remind myself that in the big plan, our time here is but a short time. Our goal should be to love as Christ first loved us.

L- Lord

O – offers

V – victory

E – Everlasting

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (NIV)
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.

Change

We now have two new “coffee pots” at the church. They are kind of “plug and play” (ok, push and drink). They are constantly hooked up to power and have a premiant water supply. All one has to do is add the coffee. Over the years I have seen many changes in coffee pots, yet the coffee has never changed. If we don’t change the way we deliver the gospel, we may not reach a vast number of people. However, we should never change the message.

Isaiah 40:8 (NIV)
8 The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever."

Isaiah 43:18-20 (NIV)
18 "Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.
20 The wild animals honor me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the desert and streams in the wasteland, to give drink to my people, my chosen.

Just Thank the Lord

Thankfulness is the secret to a greater increase of His presence and allows us access into a life of abundance. Remember that song, Count your blessings name them one by one and see what God has done. Take time to give thanks.

1 Corinthians 1:4-9 says, “I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus, that in every way you were enriched in him in all speech and all knowledge, even as the testimony about Christ was confirmed among you- so that you are not lacking in any gift as you with for the realign of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Adhesives

After surgery I found different types of adhesives attached to my body. Some were water soluble, some needed rubbing alcohol to dissolve, and then there is the super glue that I am not sure will ever come off. As believers we are to be united forever. The super glue that holds us together is the love of God.

Colossians 3:12-14 (NIV)
12 Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

I Saw A Shadow

When the kids were little, one of them ran into our bedroom shouting/crying that they had seen a shadow. A car had passed by the house and the lights cast a shadow on the wall which scared our little one. We cuddled them in our arms (ok, Karen did the cuddling) and assured them that they were safe in their room and shadows could not hurt them.

Psalm 23:4 (NIV)
4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

The Perfect Gift

Each year I strive to get the perfect gift for my lovely wife. I spend countless hours searching for that special gift that, hopefully will show her how much she means to me. After last years blunder, I am looking high and low for that perfect gift. After 41.5 years, you would think that I would know what would please her, but I have not gotten it down yet.

God knows each of us better that we know ourselves and he has provided the perfect gift for each of us. The amazing thing is that the gift that He has given us is what we all need.

Luke 2:11 (NIV)
11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.

John 3:16 (NIV)
16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

It Takes Effort to be a Friend

Over the thanksgiving holidays, some of our grandkids asked me to play a game with them during the middle of a football game. Did I mention that it was a great game that I was into? Next thing I know, I was on the floor doing something crazy for them. At times, it is costly to be a friend. Yet that is what we are called to be in order to show the love of Christ.

Luke 6:27-31 (NIV)
27 "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,
28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
29 If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic.
30 Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back.
31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

Proverbs 17:17 (NIV)
17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.