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.

Yellow and Black

A good friend asked me the other day if I knew that yellow and black speed limit signs were just a suggested speed. Many Christians tend to treat portions of God’s Word as yellow and black. They want to choose which portions of God’s Word applies to them. God’s Word is black and white. We will be held accountable for upholding all of God’s Word.

Joshua 1:8 (NIV)
8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

Balloons

This past Saturday we gave out about 1,000 balloons at the area school festival. It was amazing to see the hundreds of yellow balloons moving up and down in the crowds. I found it more amazing to see 30 to 40 freed balloons sailing off in the sky. I would guess that they could be seen for miles. What an impact those balloons had that day. Imagine the impact that believers have on a lost and dying world when we share “His” love. Just let it go!

Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
14 "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.
15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
16 In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

The Closer, The Better

The other morning as I was preparing my gourmet breakfast. I opened a new jug of milk. In order not to spill any of the milk, I held my bowl of cereal up close to the milk jug as I began to pour. I do the same thing when putting a new quart of oil in the car or filling up the washer reservoir with a full bottle of washer fluid. As believers, the closer we are to the Lord, the greater amount of His love we receive. Also, when we are full of His love, we will share His love with others. The closer the encounter, the great the love is shared.

Lamentations 3:22-23 (NIV)
22 Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

John 13:34-35 (NIV)
34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
35 By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."

The Box

Many times, little kids enjoy playing with the boxes that their toys come in more than the toys. The other day I brought little Austin an empty box. He had a blast with it. He never missed getting a new toy. How many times do we overlook the simple joys of life? God blesses us with so many “boxes”. How often do we miss a wonderful blessing because we are focused on the toys we want? Take time today to worship our gracious Lord who has blessed us in many ways.

1 Samuel 12:24 (NIV)
24 But be sure to fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you.

Fear

I am blessed as a grandpa because our grandchildren enjoy spending time with me. At times they choose spending time with me over other family members. However, when something really bothers them or when they face fear, they only want their mother. When we face fears, we should only turn to our Lord.

When I am afraid, I will trust in you. Psalm 56:3

Missed Opportunity

Have you looked back on a situation and were sadden by a missed opportunity? Maybe it was passing up a shot in basketball. Israelmore Ayivor said, “Don’t cry over the shots you’ve missed; weep over the ones you’ve not taken at all. The bitterest regrets are for things planned but left undone!”

How about those missed opportunities to share the gospel? Look around today, don’t miss an opportunity.

Colossians 4:2-3 (NIV)
2 Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.
3 And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains.

Galatians 6:10 (NIV)
10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

Filling Potholes

A pizza company is advertising that they are filling potholes. It doesn’t matter how the potholes came about, they are fixing them for the purpose of selling pizzas. If a pizza company is willing to fix potholes in order to sell pizzas, what should a Christian do to share the gospel? Are we willing to overlook how a “pothole” developed? Are we willing to step up and take the steps to repair it regardless of the cost? God is still working on my “potholes”!

Luke 10:27 (NIV)
27 He answered: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"

John 15:13 (NIV)
13 Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

Greener Grass

I noticed a couple of cows were grazing in a small pasture. With all the rain we have had, the grass in the pasture was a plush green. Most of the cows seemed pretty content grazing within the fences; however, there was a single cow standing with her head through the fence. She was eating the grass on the other side. It seemed this cow believed that the grass was indeed greener on the other side, and she was intent on eating it instead of eating the grass in her own pasture. Sadly, it is easy for all of us to fall into this trap. It is easy for us to believe that what someone else has is better than what we have. We should be focusing on all of the blessings God has provided. When we focus on the things He has not provided, we tend to get into trouble. Note: If you water your own grass, it will become greener.

Exodus 20:17 (NIV)
17 "You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor."

50 Years Of Training

 Almost every morning for the past fifty years I have been combing my hair.  I was told that in combing my hair I was training it.  Not sure the training is working.  Not only do I still need to comb my hair each morning, but a slight breeze, wearing a motorcycle helmet, or a brush with a grandchild during the day, and I find it necessary for the comb to come back out to do its job. My prayer life is much like the need to comb my hair.  Prayer is needed not only each morning, but many times throughout the day.

1 Thessalonians 5:17.  Pray constantly.

Luke 18:1. Now he told them a parable on the need for them to pray always and not give up.

Philippians 4:6-7.  Don't worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. …

Labor Day

 

Do you remember that saying, “Get r done”? The thought implied to get the job done with no excuses or complaining. As believers, everyday is to be a Labor Day for the Kingdom.  I pray that you are enjoying your day while still laboring for the Kingdom. 

James 1:22 (NIV)
22  Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.

Whataburger

Whataburger

Earlier this year, Whataburger had a contest and the winner would receive free hamburgers for a year.  How nice that would have been to win that offer!  As believers, we have a lifetime worth of hope and peace available for us.  Yet, many times we forget to take advantage of these wonderful gifts.  In whatever circumstance we find ourselves, I pray that we would offer up these words that the psalmist wrote:

Psalm 71:14-16 (NIV)
14  But as for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more.
15  My mouth will tell of your righteousness, of your salvation all day long, though I know not its measure.
16  I will come and proclaim your mighty acts, O Sovereign LORD; I will proclaim your righteousness, yours alone.

What a Savior!

Remember When

Remember when a man’s word was his bond, a hand shake was a contract, home cooking came from your kitchen, or a dollar was worth a dollar? I was showing a couple of our grandkids a silver dollar.  They wanted to know if it were a dollar, why was it so valuable.  Man’s standards change with man’s desires.  Words seem to flow without a lot of thought.  Fist bumps have replaced handshakes.  You can now get home cooking in the frozen section of the local store.  And a silver dollar is worth at least eighteen dollars. What is the value of a believer who holds to the Word of God?

James 1:12 ESV

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.

Psalm 119:1-176 ESV  

Blessed are those whose way is blameless, who walk in the law of the Lord! Blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him with their whole heart, who also do no wrong, but walk in his ways! You have commanded your precepts to be kept diligently. Oh that my ways may be steadfast in keeping your statutes! ...

I Stand Amazed

Technology is amazing.  We now have cars that not only can stop when sensing danger but can also help keep you in your lane.  My smartphone can tell me how long it’s going to take to get where I’m going before I pull out of driveway.  But when technology loses connection or power, it is of no value.  My God never loses power. And when we lose a connection it is on me and not him.  With all that men are able to do, I still stand amazed at my savior and what He continues to do for me.

Romans 11:33-36

[33] Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and of the knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments and untraceable his ways! [34] For who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor? [35] And who has ever given to God, that he should be repaid? [36] For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever. Amen.

All Inclusive

“Even you” means that God’s grace comes to us even when we do not know everything. “Even you” means that even when we become too busy doing other things, the Lord is never too busy to grace us with his presence. We trust in God’s promise this day because his presence has nothing to do with how much we know, but on whose we are. And we know, in Christ, that we are the Lord’s!

 

So that your trust may be in the Lord, I teach you today, even you.

Proverbs 22:19