Showing posts from April, 2018


If you're married you probably wake up each day with your spouse and you both scramble to get breakfast, get ready for work, get the kids off to school, and get to the office on time where you spend the day in the company of your co-workers, then you come home at night to a family who needs your attention or you socialize with friends or you come to church and then at the end of the day you fall asleep in a heap so that you can repeat the process tomorrow. That's the way it is, and it probably won't change until you're ready to retire — but in the midst of this hectic lifestyle you can learn to make time alone, and to make the most of your time alone. Even in your busy schedule, you can squeeze out moments of solitude here and there. Maybe you can get up a few minutes before everyone else. Or stay up a few minutes later than everyone else. (By the way, if you have teenagers, getting up first is a lot easier than going to bed last.) Or maybe you have time alone on the


One night, when I was attending summer camp we had a big bonfire. The next day, during free time, a friend and I walked past the place where the bonfire had been held. It was now a big pile of fluffy, soft, gray ashes. My friend said something like, “Wouldn't it be fun to jump in the middle of that pile?” Being characteristically cautious, I said, “No, won't we get in trouble? Won't we get dirty? Won't we get caught?” He said, “Naaah! We'll jump in the swimming pool afterwards and no one will know the difference?” I said, “I’m not doing it.” He said to me, “You big wimp!” Then he quickly began taking off his shoes. He raced barefoot into the pile. What couldn't be seen underneath the top layer of gray ash were the embers still burning from the night before. They couldn't be seen, but they could be felt. My friend wasn't prepared for the effect the red hot coals would have on his tender feet. He started yelling and jumping up and down, trying to get out


If you're not living in the fullness of the Holy Spirit, you're missing out on what a relationship with God is really all about. When your life is filled with the presence of God, it makes a difference in how you live. You become under the influence of God's Holy Spirit it affects everything about you. It affects your decisions. It affects your outlook. It affects your perspective. It affects your desires. It even affects your emotions. The Holy Spirit is God. He is the third person of the Trinity. Just as the Father is God, just as Jesus is God, the Holy Spirit is God. Does that mean we worship three Gods? No. We worship one God, who exists eternally in three persons — God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. Understand that the Holy Spirit is a “he”, not an “it.” The Holy Spirit is not an inanimate Star Wars type of force. The Holy Spirit is personal. He loves. He cares. He knows. He can be grieved. He can even be prayed to. Your relationship with the Hol


Many people make the tragic mistake of thinking that good intentions are good enough to get us to heaven. They're not. Many make an even more tragic mistake of thinking that sentimental feelings are good enough to satisfy the requirement for goodness. The reasoning goes something like this. “If I feel a certain way, that shows I’m basically a good person.” As if God would say, “Hey, you felt sorry for those people who went through that tragedy. At least you care. Way to go.” That's not enough. The apostle Peter makes this issue as plain as possible when he says, “Remember that the heavenly Father to whom you pray has no favorites. He will judge or reward you according to what you do.” (1 Peter 1:17) You may say, "Wait a minute. Aren't we saved by faith?" Yes, we are. But let's be clear about it. Faith isn't something you stir up emotionally. It's not some bit of knowledge you store in your head. Faith is something you do. Faith — the kind of fa


Years ago, as a mechanic I had a plaque on my tool box that stated one of Murphy’s Laws — “Do a little more each day and soon everyone will expect more.” It was meant to be a negative statement on work. However, it can also point to raising the bar in your life. As a Christ-follower you should never be satisfied with minimum requirements in living for Jesus. Subconsciously each of us set a standard: this is the least I'm willing to accept from myself. Different people set the bar at different levels. Have you ever heard someone say, "I'm not a bad person. At least, I've never killed anybody." That's an interesting place to set the bar, isn't it? As long as they've never taken a human life, they're convinced they must be OK. Others set the bar a little higher. They'll say, "I'm a good person. I pay my taxes." Others raise the bar a little higher. "Hey, I'm a good person. I help my neighbor — sometimes. I go to church — som