Showing posts from November, 2015


Growing up in my family there was an obvious unwritten code that hard work was mandatory. My grandfather and uncle wasted no time indoctrinating my cousin and I into it at an early age. The biblical concept of the adamic covenant found in Genesis 3:19 was quoted often; “by the sweat of your brow will you have food to eat until you return to the ground from which you were made.” Since that was too much to quote at the time it needed to be repeated for emphasis, it was modified to; “man is to work by the sweat of his brow.” Later it was paraphrased into a Grandadism: “Life’s hard then you die.” That phrase was used without exception anytime we would complain about the task at hand. Like the Jewish people our family looked upon work, not as a curse, but as a stewardship from God. Even the apostle took up a trade as a tentmaker and knew of the blessing of work. “Those unwilling to work will not get to eat.” (1 Thessalonians 3:10) And Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes 9:10, “Whatever you d


None of us know what life will be like when we get to heaven. But this you should know, that life today is the training ground for your future in eternity. God is preparing you for life and service in heaven. This explains why in this present age you have trials in your life. God uses trials as a teaching tool in the classroom of Christ-following faith. “These trials will show that your faith is genuine.” (1 Peter 1:7 NLT) Faith that is not tested cannot be trusted. It may not be true faith and at best it’s “little faith” without trials. Faith shows itself worthy when it is under fire from all sides. Faith that is tested triumphs in adversity and brings experience and maturity into your faith life. The value of faith is only realized when your weakness is challenged and God’s strength is the only support you hold to while passing through the furnace of the various trials you face. Faith then is perfected, purified in intensity the more it is exercised with tribulation. This resu


When your life tends to tilt, especially when you are sinking in deep trouble, the imbalance you sense should serve as a reminder that when you begin to slant away from vertical lean in the direction of the everlasting arms of your loving Lord and Savior. The words Moses writes to Israel before his death are found in Deuteronomy 33.   Moses encouraged God’s people to abide in His blessings no matter where they go because they know the true and living God—not a dead idol setting in a temple but the God of heaven who comes to the aid of His people. “The eternal God is your refuge, and his everlasting arms are under you.” (Deuteronomy 33:27 ) Life might be leaning hard on you right now. Life might be a battle for you right now. Life might be exerting its pressure giving you the inclination to give up. Let me encourage you to go forward in faith and rely on the assistance and support of the One who defeats your enemies and holds you up in the battle—Jesus. You maybe sinking undernea


In the last installment of Worthy Words I looked at the issue of soul mutiny— where the spiritual life backslides away from God.   In this issue let me offer what could be a solution when you find your soul out of fellowship with the Spirit.   If an ember is still smoldering you can always take it and spark it into a flame using the bellows of God’s Word. In Psalm 51, King David offers up a prayer to God to be restored. The chapter’s central theme is implored in verse ten—“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Following through the first twelve verses of this Psalm you find continual cries for restoration that rise to the level of the request for grace when conversion first takes place bringing us into the arms of Jesus. This is the tone of repentance. It needs to be exercised by the heart and erupt out of the mouth through the manifestation of the power of the Holy Spirit to suspend this present sin and bring soul renewal. When you get your fl


A great heartbreak as a pastor is to witness mutiny. It’s not when folks leave the church. I’m addressing a more ominous desertion—the forsaking of Christ. Mutiny of the soul is when a person walks no more with the Lord. I’m forced to ask myself probing questions concerning such actions of those I’ve witnessed making such exits. Was there ever a walk to begin with? (Even Peter didn’t know Judas was a betrayer). What was the reason to make such a change? What has happened in the past that caused you to believe Jesus was not all-sufficient for your life? If Christ was kindhearted and gracious to you, giving you all the peace your heart could hold what did He do to change your desire? What made you exchange your gold for slag? What wilderness has He ever left you alone in? What is so new an attractive that it trumps the Eternal? Pondering such things leaves me a bit confounded as to why simple faith doesn’t find a resting place in the arms of our Savior. But alas, when Jesus exp