If you could build a house for Jesus, if He asked you to build a house for Him, what would it look like? How big would it be? What would the floor plan be like? How would you furnish and decorate it? How much would it cost you? Or how much money would you spend on His house? For us who really love our Lord, we doubtless would spare no expense to build Jesus as lavish a mansion as we could possibly afford. If money wasn’t an issue or a limitation with us, we would build Him the best and the nicest mansion that money can buy. And we’d put it on a huge estate like the ones that kings and royalties have.

What if, instead of building Him a house, Jesus wanted to come and live with us in our house. What would we do to our house to make it truly fit for a King? You’d probably spend a lot of time cleaning the place up, maybe even remodeling it, so that Jesus would have a nice, clean, house to live in. You’d make sure that Jesus had the nicest room in the house.

On somewhat of a related note, I’m one who likes to drop by unannounced to pay you a visit. I know it’s a courteous thing to call in advance and see if it’s alright to drop by. But I wasn’t brought up that way. Everybody on the island was like me: you visited family and friends without an invitation or advance notice. We valued your presence and visit! And it didn’t matter to us, or them, what our house happened to look like at the moment. We were just glad you dropped by for a visit.

Now that I’m stateside and married to a Caucasian, I’ve learned that dropping by unexpectedly just isn’t nice: it doesn’t give the woman of the house a chance to clean the place up. A woman wants to make sure her house is nice and clean when company comes. A clean house gives people a good impression of a woman as being a good housekeeper.

The point is, we want our house to be nice, clean, and presentable for company. When that company happens to be someone who’s important, powerful, famous, or rich (like a politician, entertainer, or professional athlete), we work extra hard and long to make sure our place is as immaculate as possible.

I understand that God might not be as consumed about the presentability of our house as we are. He was, after all, born in a stable. A feeding trough was His crib. In this way, He really wasn’t picky about where He was born or lived.

But I’m sure Joseph and Mary took whatever time they had to clean the stable and trough. There was no way there were going to let their newborn Baby lie in a filthy bed!

The point is, we want to make sure that Jesus lives in as nice and as clean a house as possible. No way are we going to let Him stay in a pig sty of a home!

Some of you, perhaps many of us, can breathe a sigh of relief that Jesus Himself isn’t dropping by for a visit. Some aren’t comfortable with the idea of Jesus coming to see where we live and how we live. We wouldn’t want Jesus staying too long, much less living with us, because, well, we just can’t be on our best behavior for that long a period of time! We can’t do some of the things we normally do (like watch a smutty TV show) as long as we know Jesus is around. We’d have to watch our language and cut out the profanity that comes so easily to a lot of professing Christians.

Would it trouble or alarm you if I told you that, while Jesus isn’t here bodily to pay us a visit, He nevertheless is here in Spirit to pay us a visit? He’s here not just to visit us, but to actually live and stay with us! He said in John 14:23, All who love Me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and We will come and make Our home with each of them.

The word home is an interesting one. It literally means what it means: a place to live, a home. There’s nothing cryptic about the word. What’s so interesting about it to me is it’s the same word Jesus used in John 14:2. A lot of translations say, In my Father’s house are many rooms. For those of you who grew up with the King James Version, In my Father’s house are many mansions. The words rooms, mansions, and home are all one and same word in the original Greek text of Scripture.

Let me put it together for you. In John 14:2, Jesus is going home to the Father in Heaven so that He can prepare a room, a home, or a mansion, for us. Wow! Jesus is building a place for us! Can you possibly imagine what our house or room will look like after Jesus is done getting it ready? The streets of Heaven are made of gold. The gates of the City are made of pearl. The foundations are made with all sorts of precious gems or stones. The richest people on Earth can’t hold a stick to Jesus when it comes to building the best!

While Jesus is busy getting our homes ready, through His Holy Spirit, both He and the Father are dwelling inside us. Our body is Their room, home, or mansion! Yikes! Jesus really is living with us! He’s staying in our house!

Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 6:19 that our bodies are the Temple of the Holy Spirit. Like a mansion, house, or Temple, our body is where the Father and Son live in Spirit.

So what does our house look like? I’m talking about our body. But not just our body, but our mind, our heart, our thoughts, desires, and passions. We said all along that, if Jesus wanted to come visit us, or live with us, we would clean house and make sure our house is so totally clean, immaculate, and nice for Jesus. Well, Jesus is living with us in Spirit. He’s living in our body. Our body is His house. It’s His mansion. We wouldn’t think of letting Jesus live in a pig sty of a house. Let’s not have Him live in a dirty, filthy body!

How does our house become dirty? We don’t clean it. We make a mess without cleaning up after ourselves. We’re not organized: we leave things wherever we want to without putting them in their proper place. We don’t wash what needs washed. We don’t take the time, some of us are just too tired or lazy, to keep our house looking nice and clean all the time. We don’t pick up, or take out, the trash. We don’t fix what’s broken. We pretty much  don’t do anything to the house except mess it up. Mostly, we don’t care what our house looks like.

It’s the same way with our body. Some people don’t care what they body looks like. They let their appetites go uncontrolled, eating a lot, eating what’s not healthy or good for the body; drinking and ingesting stuff that, over time and repeated intake, become poison. The unhealthy stuff that we eat and drink, after years of not caring or not being temperate, makes our body sick and diseased. We don’t exercise, lose weight, or eat healthy. We’re too lazy to take good care of our body. All we do is mess it up. A lot of us don’t care about what we’re doing to our body.

Then there’s the spiritual side of our body. We allow all sorts of bad, dirty, wicked thoughts and desires to enter and stay in our mind. We adopt a way of thinking that really is perverse and abominable in God’s sight. Like pigs frolicking in the mud, we like being human—that is being carnal, selfish, and sinful—that the thought of cleaning up our heart and mind, being righteous, and living a holy Christian life, just has no desire or appeal to us. We say we’re Christians. But, like our house and body, we’re too lazy to be a good Christian.

So let me ask you in closing. Since Jesus is living inside you, in your body, how are you taking care of your body? What are you doing to your body? Are you cleaning it up? Are you content to let Jesus live in the pig sty that you’ve made for yourself?

I hope not. Jesus is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He’s fit to live in the nicest, cleanest, most beautiful house that money can buy and that men can build. Take a good, long look at your body, your appetites, the way you treat, or mistreat and abuse, your body. Look at how you’ve furnished your body—all the thoughts, desires, and ambitions that you’ve put in your heart and mind. Don’t you think it’s time, in a manner of speaking, to clean the place up, maybe even build Jesus a mansion that’s worthy of Him? Like Paul said in Romans 12:2, And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him.

Does God find your house, your body, acceptable? See your body as Jesus’ mansion. If you want Jesus living in the mansion you’ve got, fine. But, in your heart of hearts, if you haven’t taken the time to clean the place up, make it beautiful, and appealing to Him; then start right now with the demolition and remodel. Build Him a home that He’d love to stay in. Build Him the best because He’s worthy of the best. Besides that,  He’s building the best for you.


In the course of a twenty-four hour period we make gobs of decisions. Some of these we make with a serious amount of forethought and prayer. Others we make spontaneously with little or no thought as to the consequences or impact our decisions will have—not only for ourselves, but for the many others whose lives are intertwined with ours.

Have you ever thought much about how a single decision can change your life forever? For better or worse?

In these blog posts I’d like to look at the one good decision that some people in the Bible made that changed the course of their life for the better. By looking at ourselves in the mirror of God’s Word I hope we’ll all take comfort, courage, and hope in the fact that, despite the mess we’re presently faced with, we can still turn things around. A lousy past or dismal present doesn’t have to give us the same future. By God’s grace, our future and life can be changed for the better…if we only make the right decision today. May God help us do that on a daily basis!


In a PREVIOUS POST I wrote about a man in the early church named Barnabas. I’ve thought a lot about him since then.

We’ve been studying the Book of Acts in our adult Sunday school class. Each one was asked to do a character study on any person found or mentioned in that Book. Naturally, with the thought of Barnabas fresh on my mind, I chose to do my study on Barnabas. Was I ever glad I did! Let me tell you what I mean.

We know about the conversion of the church’s fiercest and most-feared persecutor – Saul. When Saul could no longer work for the Lord in Damascus because of the opposition of the Jews, he came back to Jerusalem hoping to be received by the apostles and the church (Acts 9). But the apostles would not see him or have anything to do with him. They were afraid of Saul and perhaps thought that Saul’s conversion was a ruse to capture, imprison, and kill more Christians – especially the apostles.

According to ancient tradition (Theodore Lector, circa 525 AD), Barnabas and Saul both went together to the school of Gamaliel, the renowned Pharisaic Teacher. Barnabas had been trying for several years to convert Saul to Christ, but was unsuccessful.

Anyways, when Barnabas heard that Saul was saved and was in town, he went looking for him. In Barnabas’ eyes, even the church’s most-feared persecutor deserved a fair hearing. After speaking with him, Barnabas was convinced of the sincerity and genuineness of Saul’s conversion. To his credit and our eternal benefit and our eternal benefit, Barnabas brought Saul to the apostles and convinced the apostles to meet with him.

The result of that meeting, as we know, is history. Saul was received by the apostles and ministered for a time in Jerusalem. If it weren’t for Barnabas, the apostles wouldn’t have met with Saul; the Church in Jerusalem wouldn’t have received him; and the history and growth of the Christian Church would not have been the one that we find recorded in the Book of Acts.

You see, Barnabas believed that people—even the worst of men—can change through the power of Christ. He believed that the Church would be better if Saul were a part of it. And he believed that Saul would be an effective witness for Jesus Christ. Barnabas took a chance on Saul and history proved him right. Saul was an invaluable Christian leader, missionary, and evangelist. The Church truly was better off with Saul in it. Like I said in my PREVIOUS POST, the Christian world owes Barnabas a debt of gratitude that can never be fully paid. Thank you, Barnabas!

In view of how history was changed when Saul became a Christian and a missionary for Christ, I believe it goes without saying that Saul being received by the apostles and the Jerusalem Church—his getting their stamp of approval upon his conversion and ministry—was Barnabas’ magnus opus.

Barnabas and Saul, who was later named Paul, would spend the next several years working together in various churches throughout Palestine, Syria, and Asia Minor. They took John Mark, Barnabas’ cousin, along with them on one of their missionary trips. But for some reason that we are not told, Mark decided to leave Barnabas and Saul and return home to Jerusalem.

Well, some time after, Paul decided that he and Barnabas should return to the churches they established during their first missionary journey and see how the newborn believers there were doing (Acts 15:36).

Barnabas agreed that this was a needful thing to do. He wanted to take John Mark along with them. Paul disagreed. He thought it best not to take someone along who had, in his own words, deserted them during their first missionary journey. This was a rather strong and serious charge. In all likelihood, as we glean from his later writings, Paul had very high standards for Christian leaders. Desertion and unfaithfulness would certainly disqualify one from continuing in ministry.

In contrast, Barnabas stood by his cousin. I don’t think he did this merely because he was family. I believe Barnabas stuck by Mark because he firmly believed that you needed to give people a chance to get things right. People—even a deserter—are capable of changing through the grace of God.

The disagreement between Barnabas and Paul escalated into a severe argument, with neither man willing to concede or compromise. Both were adamant and entrenched in their position that the only recourse left was to part ways: Barnabas took Mark and went to Cyprus. We never hear again from him in the Book of Acts. Paul took Silas and went throughout Asia Minor and Europe.

Earlier, I talked about Paul’s introduction to the apostles and his acceptance by them as being Barnabas’ magnus opus. Along this same line of great works, think about how this sharp, vocal, and doubtless, heated argument could have scarred John Mark for life. Put yourself in Mark’s shoes. Wouldn’t you feel spiritually, emotionally, and mentally battered, rejected, and worthless after the great apostle Paul has made you feel unworthy, almost apostate, labelling you as a deserter? How many more hurtful words were spoken? The point I’m trying to make is, there’s no way John Mark walked away from this argument without being scarred or hurt.

Barnabas stood by Mark’s side. He took Mark back to Cyprus. And Barnabas nursed Mark back to spiritual life. He got him involved in evangelism again as they went throughout Cyprus evangelizing. Instead of doing what so many of us would have done if we were treated badly and severely bad-mouthed–drop out of  church, become bitter, critical, and antagonistic towards Christians, and turn our backs on the Lord;  Mark stayed in the ministry and proved his mettle as a Christian leader and worker that, years later, he would work once again with Paul. And Paul, having a change of heart and mind, regarded this one-time deserter as being profitable to him in the ministry (2 Timothy 4:11). John Mark’s redemption and triumph in Christian ministry, I am saying, is Barnabas’ handiwork. It is his second magnus opus.

Even though Barnabas sets sail into the sunset in the Book of Acts, never to be seen or heard from again, his accomplishments in the lives of Paul and Mark stand as an unerected monument to his greatness and his graciousness as a man who gave the most undeserving of people a chance. Without fanfare or notice, Barnabas made people great by the sheer power of love, faith, and kindness that were in his heart.

Barnabas’ disagreement with Paul, his parting ways with Paul, and his disappearance into oblivion and obscurity; reminds us that making the best, or the right, decision sometimes comes at a great cost or suffering. It comes with a lot of grief and hurt. Barnabas reminds us that there’s a price to pay for standing up for what we believe is good and right. The consequences of being faithful or true may not be pretty.

But through all the tears and pain, Barnabas teaches us to console ourselves in the fact that we did what we believed was good and right. He teaches us to persevere in the right no matter the costs or consequences. Like John Mark who needed Barnabas to stand by him and nurture him back to life, there are people out there who need our encouragement and help. No pride intended, there are people out there who need us. Like Barnabas with Mark, we need to be there for them.

History may never record another word about you. Like Barnabas, you may sail into the sunset of obscurity without fanfare or notice. But the lives that you’ve changed; the investment that you’ve made in the people you’ve helped; stand as unerected monuments—they are unwritten epitaphs and unspoken eulogies—of your true greatness in the sight of God. So persevere and press on, O child of God. A hurting world and church awaits and needs you.



In the course of a twenty-four hour period we make gobs of decisions. Some of these we make with a serious amount of forethought and prayer. Others we make spontaneously with little or no thought as to the consequences or impact our decisions will have—not only for ourselves, but for the many others whose lives are intertwined with ours.

Have you ever thought much about how a single decision can change your life forever? For better or worse?

In these blog posts I’d like to look at the one good decision that some people in the Bible made that changed the course of their life for the better. By looking at ourselves in the mirror of God’s Word I hope we’ll all take comfort, courage, and hope in the fact that, despite the mess we’re presently faced with, we can still turn things around. A lousy past or dismal present doesn’t have to give us the same future. By God’s grace, our future and life can be changed for the better…if we only make the right decision today. May God help us do that on a daily basis!

By way of introduction, the daily news are replete with reports of people who, quite tragically, were at the wrong place at the wrong time. Some of these unfortunate people end up being horrifically hurt or scarred for life. Many end up dead.

I don’t ever want to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. No matter where I am, I want to be where I’m supposed to be. Where God wants me to be.  I want to be at the right place at the right time.

But am I? Are you? Self is so deceitful and we can brusquely dismiss the question with a positive Yes, I am where I’m supposed to be! But, really and truthfully, are we where we’re supposed to be? How can we tell if we are or aren’t? Just so you know, I don’t have all the answers. But the Lord was good enough to give me one telltale way to know if we’re where we’re supposed to be.


The time was rapidly drawing nigh when Jesus would be killed. Months prior to this, Jesus began preparing His disciples for the fate that awaited Him in Jerusalem. He would be killed. The chief priests would arrest Him, try Him, then condemn Him to death. He was gonna be crucified. As He approached Jerusalem, Jesus broke the sad and awful news: one of His very own disciples would betray Him and hand Him over to the chief priests. One of the twelve was gonna help Him get killed! It was, for sure, very sad and disturbing news.

But, good news! He was gonna come back to life on the third day. He wasn’t gonna stay dead forever. He’s was gonna come out of the grave and live again! Live forever! Hallelujah! That’s really great and fantastic news!

The problem is, even though Jesus is going to live again, He isn’t going to live on earth. He’s going back to Heaven where He came from (John 14:1-3, 16:5-7).

The thing I really like about Jesus is, He doesn’t just dump the bad news on us: He follows up with good news. WITH GOD, THERE’S ALWAYS GOOD NEWS WITH THE BAD. In the context of His departure, the good news is, when Jesus leaves this ole world He’s gonna send the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, to live and be with us (John 14:16, 16:7).

The Comforter is gonna do a lot of really neat things for us. He’s gonna help us, teach us, and remind us of everything Jesus taught us in His Word (John 14:26, 16:13).

The best part is coming. We’re here on earth to do a mission for God (Matthew 28:16-20). We’re supposed to be telling other people about Jesus and getting them to follow Him. We can do that on our own with very limited effects or results. But when the Spirit of God comes upon us and lives inside us, wow!, we’re gonna be filled with so much Spirit and heavenly power that we’ll take the Gospel worldwide and people in every corner of this ole world will become believers and followers of Christ (Acts 1:8). The truth is, we need the Spirit to help us make Christ known and make Christ-believers!

Jesus knew His disciples needed the Holy Spirit in order for them to be successful in their evangelistic mission. That’s why He told them in Acts 1:4, Don’t leave Jerusalem yet. Wait here for the Father to give you the Holy Spirit, just as I told you he has promised to do.

True to the Lord’s command, the disciples stayed put in Jerusalem. They waited. And prayed (Acts 1:13-14).

The day of Pentecost came, much like any other day. The sun came up, people woke up, and everyone began their daily routine. For the twelve apostles in particular, they continued doing what Jesus told them to do. They all met together in someone’s house and prayed. All twelve of them (Acts 2:1, 14).

Suddenly, at about 9 o’clock in the morning, the Father kept His promise. The Spirit came down from Heaven in such a mighty outpouring of power that Peter and the rest of the apostles went right to work, witnessing for Jesus. By the time Peter was done preaching, about three thousand Jews became believers and followers of Christ! Hallelujah! It just goes to show what great works we can do for Christ when we’ve got the Spirit working in and through us!

So what’s the point? All twelve apostles were baptized and filled with the Spirit because all twelve of them were obedient to the Lord and waited. They stayed together. They met together. They prayed together. They were where God wanted them to be. They were where they were supposed to be—all together. All waiting. All praying. Just like what Jesus wanted them to do.

Now here’s a probing question. I asked you earlier how we can tell if we’re where we’re supposed to be. We may not always see the answer for ourselves. But we can readily see it in others. Here’s the question. What if one of the apostles was a No-Show on that Pentecostal morning? What if he decided that it was more important for him to be somewhere else, doing something else? Would he have received the Pentecostal experience? Would he have been in the street that morning, with the rest of the apostles, witnessing for Jesus, and seeing thousands of his fellow Jews get saved? No, I don’t think so. The Scriptures explicitly state that the Spirit of God filled the entire house where the apostles were and they were all filled with the Spirit (Acts 2:1-4). Nothing is said about the Spirit filling and baptizing anyone outside the house.

The point is, Jesus gave His disciples a promise: the Spirit is coming! He told them what to do: wait for the Spirit to come upon you. They obeyed Him. And, as a result, God kept His Word and the Spirit came upon them just as Jesus said would happen. They were obedient to the Lord’s command. They put themselves in a position to receive the promised Holy Spirit. They were at the right place at the right time.

Like the promise of the Holy Spirit, God’s made us all sorts of promises. Gobs of them. We want them all. And, like the Pentecostal baptism, God’s going to keep His promises. Every last one of them.

But, in a manner of speaking, are we all together in the same place, in one accord, praying and waiting? Are we doing what God’s told us to do in the mean time? Are we at the right place at the right time? Are we where we’re supposed to be?

Sometimes, maybe a lot of times, it looks to us as if God’s a No-Show with some of the promises that we’ve prayed to Him about. It looks like God’s not going to keep His promise. But, instead of God being the problem, could it be we’ve not received the promise because we’re a No-Show? Because we’re not where we’re supposed to be at? Because we aren’t at the right place at the right time? Could it be we haven’t received what we’ve asked God for because we haven’t been doing what God’s told us to do?

Let me say it once again. God gave these apostles a promise. He told them what to do. They did it. And, as a consequence, they received the promised Holy Spirit. They received the Spirit because they were obedient. They were at the right place at the right time.

So where’s the right place at the right time? Where are you supposed to be? How do you get to where you’re supposed to be? Friends, you obey the Lord. You do what God’s told you to do.

In a manner of speaking, if you’re not with the rest of the disciples praying in the house, you’re not gonna receive the promise God made you. If you’re not doing what God’s told you to do, then you’re not where you’re supposed to be. You’re not at the right place at the right time. WHEN YOU’RE DISOBEDIENT TO GOD YOU’RE AT THE WRONG PLACE AT THE WRONG TIME.

You may think you know a better way. You have a different, howbeit, a better, idea of where you need to be and what you need to do.

Aghast! Are you for real? Have you lost your mind? When did you become smarter than God? What could possibly be better than obeying the Lord? What on earth could be more important than doing what God’s told you to do?  What could possibly be more right than obeying God?

Despite whatever temptations the apostles had to do other things beside meet and pray, they kept Jesus’ command foremost in their thoughts, priorities, and actions. They obeyed Him. And waited. And prayed. All of them together in one place.

And, as a consequence, they all received the Spirit’s indwelling. They were never again the same. Pentecost changed them into mighty missionaries. They stayed loyal and obedient to Christ that not even the threat of death, or death itself, could turn them away from Him. THEY CHANGED THE WORLD BECAUSE PENTECOST CHANGED THEM. THEIR OBEDIENCE CHANGED THEM.

Let’s be clear about one thing. The disciples were just like you and me. They weren’t omniscient. They didn’t know that Pentecost would change them. They didn’t know that the promised Holy Spirit would come on Pentecost morning. Jesus didn’t tell them exactly when the Spirit would come. They just kept on obeying the Lord. The met together and prayed. Day after day. Until God kept His promise to them and gave them the Holy Spirit. Continuing to meet and pray together was their best decision ever and it changed them for the rest of their lives.

Friends, it’s Pentecost morning. The promise is a coming. I know you’ve got a thousand and one things to do today. There’s a bunch of really important stuff you need to get done today. You’ve gone to church a lot lately. You even went to the last prayer meeting. You’re tempted to skip your time with the Lord and the rest of the believers because something you think is more important has come up.

Brethren, don’t be a No-Show. Be where you’re supposed to be. Where God wants you to be. Where God Himself is gonna be. Be at the right place at the right time. How do you do that? JUST DO, AND KEEP DOING, WHAT GOD’S TOLD YOU TO DO. IT’S HOW YOU GET ANSWERS TO PRAYER. GOD SHOWS UP WITH THE PROMISE WHEN YOU’RE WHERE YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE, DOING WHAT YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO BE DOING.  So be there! Like the twelve, newly Spirit-baptized apostles, it’ll be your best decision ever! God bless you. And thanks for dropping by.



Some people love challenges. They’ll look at something new. Something hard. And they’ll take up the challenge of doing it just to get the satisfaction or thrill of knowing they can do something they’ve never done before. Something hard. Challenging. Exhilarating.

Just so you know, I am not that way at all. I am 1,000,000,000,000% a comfort-zone type of guy. I like doing the doable. That means it’s easy and doesn’t demand a whole lot of  my time, effort, or thinking. When it comes to what’s new, difficult, or challenging, you can generally count me out, folks. I’m not touching it with a ten-foot pole!

I won’t do the difficult—not unless I’m forced to—because life already has too many difficulties and challenges. I don’t need to  add to them. I don’t need any more trials or challenges!  I’m heading into my golden years and I love to relax, take it easy, and do what I love doing most. Can you guess what that is? It’s studying  the Bible and writing. I just love spending time with the Lord because He talks to me a lot of times—not audibly, but in my spirit—and He tells me lots of really neat stuff. Stuff that I’ve just got to share with you. This blog is a perfect example of the stuff God gives me when I spend time with Him. I love Him. I love what I’m doing. But I dread doing the difficult.

Here’s a question for you. When the Lord asks you to do something difficult…no, strike that. When the Lord tells you to do something difficult, something you really don’t want to do, something you think is impossible to do, something that’s a Are you out of your mind? I can’t do that! type of thing; what do you do?

Just so you know, you’re not the only one who’s had to do something really really hard. You’re not alone. We’ve all been there and done that. The biblical characters weren’t any different from us. In fact, they were exactly like us: human. I’d like to draw on their life’s experiences and, from beyond the grave, as it were, let them share with us what we’ve got to do when the Lord gives us our Mission I M possible. By God’s grace, we can do what God’s counting on us to do! Here’s how.


Yay! You’ve read my last post in this series and you’ve decided, like David, it’s high time to obey the Lord. You can’t put it off any longer. It’s been killing you. So you’ve said a prayer, taken a deep breath, and taken the first step towards obeying God. Good for you! God’s so proud of you, I’m sure! I know I am!


I wish it weren’t that way, but that’s just how nasty the devil is. You think God’s gonna be with you (and He is) and things are gonna go smooth (not necessary). Everything’s gonna turn out alright (eventually, but not always at first sight). But the devil is gonna do everything he can to stop that from happening. He’s fought you this hard and this long, preventing and prolonging your obedience to God. Do you think he’s gonna stop messing with you now that you’re actually obeying God? Not on your life! The devil’s gonna work harder to make things even harder for you. To make it look like it’s not gonna work. It ain’t gonna happen. You can’t do it.  It can’t be done. You may as well stop now before you make a bigger mess and fool of yourself, the devil says.

What are you gonna do? Who are you gonna believe and follow? Think the Lord led you wrong and gave you something truly impossible for you to do? Not on your life, mister! The devil’s a lying to you and you’d best not listen to him. Make the difficult choice and continue obeying God. You know what you’ve got to do. Keep focused on the mission. Get it done. And don’t let anyone or anything stop you from doing what you know you’ve got to do. Don’t get sidetracked or distracted. Shut the devil up. Don’t let him get into your mind and convince you you can’t get ‘er done. Keep leaning on God for grace, courage, and strength. Take it one step at a time. Keep doing what God’s telling you to do, even if you’re doing just a little bit at a time. As long as you do that you’ll eventually get ‘er done.

This reminds me of one of our Lord’s disciples named Peter. It’d been a really long day with the Lord ministering to gobs and gobs of people (Matthew 14:13-23). Evening was setting in. Jesus fed the five-thousand. Dusk was on it’s way—a beckoning reminder to all that it was time to wrap things up and call it a day. So Jesus sent His  twelve disciples in a boat across the Sea. He would stay on shore for a while, send the multitudes of folks on their way, then He would stay a while and pray by Himself. Eventually, He’ll meet up with the disciples on the other side.

It wasn’t long before things took a terrifying and disheartening turn for the worse (Matthew 14:24-33). A storm came up while the disciples were at sea. If you’ve ever been at sea or on the shoreline while it was storming you can very well imagine what was happening to the disciples as the waves and winds beat mercilessly against the boat, threatening to sink it. The disciples, I’m sure, to a man, were panic-stricken as they frantically bailed water out of the boat, rowed against the winds, and hung on for dear life. Wow! What an awful time to be alone, on your own, and not have Jesus around to bail you out! Talk about baaaad timing! I can see tempers flaring and mouths running loose. Why did Jesus send us across the sea at such a lousy time as this? This was one bad call!

Jesus, I’m sure, was very well aware of what was happening to His disciples out on the sea. But He continued praying until He was done praying. Finally, sometime between 3 AM and 6 AM, Jesus came to His disciples walking on the water! Remember it’s storming really bad. It’s dark. The disciples have been rowing for a good 7 to 9 hours. They tired and tuckered out. They weren’t in the best of moods.

Suddenly, in the faint moon light, they saw someone walking towards them on the water! It’s a ghost!, they all cried. But Jesus assured them it was He Himself for real (Matthew 14:25-27). I’m sure the disciples’ moods were instantly changed by the sight of their Lord. With Jesus came hope and the miracle of certain survival!

Well, Jesus was still a ways off from the boat. Even though the voice was familiar, the form wasn’t entirely clear to the disciples. Peter, for one, wasn’t totally sure that it really was Jesus. People can’t walk on water! That’s impossible! But ghosts can! This guy’s got to be a ghost!  Peter’s unconvinced it’s really Jesus. So he decided that if it was really Jesus walking out there on the water, then, Jesus had better prove it by telling Peter to come to Him walking on the water (Matthew 14:28). Peter must’ve figured if Jesus could walk on water, then he could too! Like I said in my intro, some guys thrive on challenges. So Jesus gives the order. Come!

Amazingly, for a guy who must’ve battled fear many times while out on the sea  during a storm, Peter mustered the courage and faith, got out of the boat, and started walking towards Jesus! Peter was actually walking on water! He was doing something that was ordinarily, humanly impossible! Like Jesus told us, WE CAN DO THE IMPOSSIBLE AS LONG AS WE BELIEVE (Matthew 17:20, Mark 9:23).

Now everything to this point has been unimaginably, excruciating difficult. But walking on water will be Peter’s worst nightmare. Now he’s got no boat protecting him from sinking. The other disciples aren’t close enough to him to hold on to him. He’s gonna survive this storm and walk on water strictly on his own faith. Nothing else is holding him up. He’ll sink if he gets skeptical. He’ll drown if he doubts.

Peter does fine as long as he keeps his eyes on Jesus. As long as he stays focused on Christ he’ll succeed.

But, like many of us, Peter succumbs to the temptation of looking around at the awful circumstances that he’s faced with. He takes his eyes off of  Jesus, looks at the winds and waves, and, you guessed it, he begins to sink.

Matthew 14:29-31 tells the story this way: So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus.  (30)  But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted.  (31)  Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt Me?”


Do you wanna know how to do the difficult? Just do it and keep your eyes focused on Jesus. Concentrate on getting the job done.

I know that’s easier said than done. But I’m no armchair theologian. I’ve been there and I know what it’s like to be really, really scared. But I tell you this. Like the disciples rowing frantically and fearfully in the sea, Jesus will come to you in the midst of your fears and help you! You’re never alone! You belong to Him and He will not leave you on your own. He’ll always come to the rescue. Let these truths sink into your heart and mind and let them anchor your ship in the troubled storms of life.

The alternative isn’t pretty. If you take your eyes off of the Lord and look at all the obstacles, difficulties, and fears that the devil’s putting in your way, you’re gonna get scared. Naturally. And when you’re scared you’ll begin to lose your faith. You’ll start doubting God. Friends, YOU CAN’T DO THE DIFFICULT WHEN YOU’RE FEARFUL AND DOUBTFUL. THE DIFFICULT CAN BE DONE ONLY IF YOU BELIEVE AND KEEP ON BELIEVING. YOU’LL LOSE FAITH WHEN YOU’RE LOOKING AT CIRCUMSTANCES INSTEAD OF CHRIST.

Keep your eyes, mind, and entire being focused on Jesus and the mission and you’ll accomplish the mission. As long as you do that, like Peter walking on the water, all the bad stuff that’s happening around you, trying to stop you, will not be able to stop you from accomplishing your mission. You will succeed when your mind and entire being are set on obeying the Lord.

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you were encouraged and emboldened in the Lord. I pray God help you stay focused and give you the grace to look at nothing else but Him. He’ll get you through as long as you’re depending and focused on Him. God bless you dearly.



In the course of a twenty-four hour period we make gobs of decisions. Some of these we make with a serious amount of forethought and prayer. But, if you’re like me, we make many of our decisions spontaneously with little or no thought as to the consequences or impact our decisions will have—not only for ourselves, but also for the many others whose lives are intertwined with ours.

Have you ever thought much about how a single decision can change your life forever? Sometimes a single decision will change us for the better. And sometimes a single decision will change us for the worse.

In these blog posts I’d like to look at the singular decision that some people in the Bible made that changed their lives forever…for the worse. By looking at ourselves in the mirror of God’s Word it’ll give us reason to stop and think about both the long-term and short-term ramifications of the decisions we make. Lots of forethought and prayer, I’m convinced, will save us from the pain and regret of a hastily-made decision for the worse.


King Solomon had died. In accordance with his wishes and will, one of his many sons, Rehoboam by name, ascended the throne.

Now during Solomon’s lifetime and reign life in Israel was almost idyllic. At least that’s how we tend to view the Biblical record of the glories, splendor, and public works of the peace-time King. But all his wealth and public works came at the onerous expense of the countless Israelites and foreign laborers who were needed to accomplish the King’s many grand and ambitious works.

1 Kings 12:1-4  tells the story well. Rehoboam went to Shechem, where all Israel had gathered to make him king.  (2)  When Jeroboam son of Nebat heard of this, he returned from Egypt, for he had fled to Egypt to escape from King Solomon.  (3)  The leaders of Israel summoned him, and Jeroboam and the whole assembly of Israel went to speak with Rehoboam.  (4)  “Your father was a hard master,” they said. “Lighten the harsh labor demands and heavy taxes that your father imposed on us. Then we will be your loyal subjects.”

Now if the King had any wits about himself, that kind of talk hinted at rebellion, maybe even secession, if the King proved deaf to their reasonable demands. Thankfully, the King proved smart. Instead of giving them an instant reply he wanted time to think. He needed to consult his counselors. So he told the delegation of leaders to come back in three days to hear his response.

Then King Rehoboam discussed the matter with the older men who had counseled his father, Solomon. “What is your advice?” he asked. “How should I answer these people?”  (7)  The older counselors replied, “If you are willing to be a servant to these people today and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your loyal subjects” (1 Kings 12:6-7). The advice of the aged was sound and good. Really, it was a no-brainer. “Serve the people well, treat them good and right, and they’ll be your loyal subjects.”

Incredulously, the King did not give heed to his wise and aged counselors. 1 Kings 12:8-11 chronicles the sad and tearful error: But Rehoboam rejected the advice of the older men and instead asked the opinion of the young men who had grown up with him and were now his advisers.  (9)  “What is your advice?” he asked them. “How should I answer these people who want me to lighten the burdens imposed by my father?”  (10)  The young men replied, “This is what you should tell those complainers who want a lighter burden: ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist!  (11)  Yes, my father laid heavy burdens on you, but I’m going to make them even heavier! My father beat you with whips, but I will beat you with scorpions!'”

The rest, as you know, is history. The delegation of leaders came back three days later. Rehoboam gave them his defiant answer. And the united Kingdom of Israel was divided that day, split into two rival kingdoms. The King listened to bad advice and it turned out to be his worst decision ever. Israel was never again the same. To this very day! Rehoboam lost the bulk of his kingdom. And the downward spiral into chaos, civil war, and national defeat had begun.

Friends, learn a couple of lessons here and learn them well. First, JUST BECAUSE YOU DON’T LIKE THE ADVICE DOESN’T AUTOMATICALLY MEAN IT’S BAD OR WRONG ADVICE.  Good advice, at times, is difficult to listen to; it’s hard, but not impossible, to do; and it’s terribly easy to resist and reject it outright. WHAT YOU LIKE, OR WHAT PLEASES YOU, SHOULD NOT BE THE DETERMINANT OF GOOD OR BAD ADVICE.

And second, DO NOT LISTEN TO BAD ADVICE. Not all advice is good advice. Both good and bad people are capable of giving you bad advice. So learn to recognize bad advice. Give no heed to it. And you will spare yourself a lifetime of sorrow and regret.

Rather than showing you how to tell if the advice you’re getting is good or bad, I’d like to stick to the Biblical script and give you some pointers about the kind of people whose advice is so totally worth considering.

  • Give preferential consideration to the advice of the elderly. Old age, or whoever you consider to be old, doesn’t automatically make the aged right. But they’ve lived long enough, they’ve been around the block a few times, and, believe it or not, they were once young and in the very shoes you’re wearing now. They’ve learned a few things. And because they’ve experienced life longer, they kinda know how things tend to go or end when you go down a certain path. They have real-life wisdom. Don’t reject their counsel just because they’re old. The very fact that they’re old makes them worth listening to.
  •  Give preferential consideration to the advice of people who love you the most. A lot of time, people give advice for selfish, ulterior motives. They don’t really care about you. They won’t be there to pick up the broken pieces that come with bad advice. People who truly love you genuinely care for you. They seek your best interests. They’re watching out for you. They’re trying to save you from heartache, grief, and regret. Don’t cut off the people who love you the most. In today’s dog-eat-dog world, you need every single person who loves you truly, unselfishly, and unconditionally.
  • Give preferential consideration to the advice of spiritual (that is, God-loving, God-fearing, God-obeying) Christians. Being a Christian is no longer good enough. In today’s world, a lot of people pass themselves off as Christians, but don’t have much of a relationship with God. Listen to people who listen to God and have a close, intimate relationship with Him. They’re in touch with God. And, hearing from God, they’re an excellent source of good, sound, Godly advice.

Let me close by giving you some wisdom from the Word that will help guide and direct your paths.

  • Proverbs 21:2,  Every man’s way is right in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the hearts. In the vernacular, I know you think you’re right. But be honest with yourself. Don’t fool yourself. Look at your heart because that’s what God’s looking at. IF THERE’S ROTTENNESS IN YOUR HEART, THEN KNOW THAT WHAT YOU’VE DETERMINED TO DO IS ROTTEN.
  • Proverbs 14:12,  There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death. Translation: Choices have consequences that, in the present, are not immediately or obviously seen. Don’t make rushed, hasty decisions. TAKE TIME TO THINK THINGS THROUGH. Look at the after-scenarios. If you don’t like the way the scenario ends, then don’t go that route. If you don’t know how things are going to end, ask God. He’ll show you.
  • James 1:22,  But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourself. In plain speak, IF YOUR DECISION ISN’T AN ACT OF OBEDIENCE TO GOD THEN YOU’RE MAKING THE WRONG DECISION.

God help us all make the right decisions. Father, teach us to discern good advice and grant us the grace to heed it.



In the course of a twenty-four hour period we make gobs of decisions. Some of these we make with a serious amount of forethought and prayer. But, if you’re like me, we make many of our decisions spontaneously with little or no thought as to the consequences or impact our decisions will have—not only for ourselves, but also for the many others whose lives are intertwined with ours.

Have you ever thought much about how a single decision can change your life forever? Sometimes a single decision will change us for the better. And sometimes a single decision will change us for the worse.

In these blog posts I’d like to look at the singular decision that some people in the Bible made that changed their lives forever…for the worse. By looking at ourselves in the mirror of God’s Word it’ll give us reason to stop and think about both the long-term and short-term ramifications of the decisions we make. Lots of forethought and prayer, I’m convinced, will save us from the pain and regret of a hastily-made decision for the worse.


I’m a minister and, for as long as I can remember, from the start, really; I’ve depended on God to give me my sermons and lesson plans. It’s been such a gratifying way of ministering because God’s people get a fresh word of encouragement and instruction from the Lord. Just as importantly for me, relying on God to tell me what He wants to say to His people has been good for my prayer life and walk with God. It keeps me constantly in His presence, waiting, listening, and writing down the words that minister life, encouragement, and hope to God’s people.

I can count on one hand the number of visions and dreams that I’ve had from the Lord. God’s never spoken audibly to me. And I’ve never been transported in spirit to Heaven to see the Lord and the unspeakable splendors of God’s very own City of Splendor.

God speaks to my spirit through His still, small, inaudible voice. The words and thoughts gently flow to my mind, much as if I was getting a mental letter from the Lord. When the Lord speaks to me I am renewed and revived in spirit. His presence and anointing are so precious and real, so heart felt, that I am truly gratified and humbled that God would even bother to speak to me and through me. When you multiply this single divine encounter over and over again, week by week through forty-plus years of ministry, I feel so richly blest and privileged to be the object of God’s love and the steward of a fresh word from the Lord.

As richly as I’ve been blest, I can’t imagine what it would be like to get visions of the Lord on a regular basis. I can’t put into words the unimaginable experience of actually getting to see the Lord face-to-face, or hear Him speak audibly to me. I look at the great men of faith in the Bible who had regular visits with the Lord—men like Moses, the prophets and apostles, and Paul—and I can’t help but imagine how privileged and blest they must have felt to be actually speaking face-to-face with God.

Put yourself in their shoes. If the Lord appeared to you in a vision or dream and you actually got to hear Him speak to you, how would you feel? Better yet, what if the Lord actually appeared to you in person? Or brought you in the spirit to His Heavenly City. Would you ever forget your personal encounter with the Lord? How would this single moment of epiphany or theophany affect you for the rest of your life? Would it make you a life-long, loyal believer living with the realization that one of these days you’ll be living in God’s presence forever? Or would you eventually lose your vision and excitement for eternity and become distracted, rather preoccupied, with yourself?

Solomon was a young man. He recently ascended the throne of Israel and was now King in place of his father King David (1 Kings 1).

Like his father before him, Solomon had a real heart for God. You might say he was on fire for the Lord. 1 Kings 3:3 describes his zeal and love for the Lord: Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of David his father: only he sacrificed and burnt incense in high places. The high places don’t mean that Solomon offered sacrifices to false gods. It simply means that, instead of offering sacrifices wherever the Tabernacle happened to be, people built altars on mountains or hills and offered their sacrifices to God there. So Solomon was definitely, totally consumed with God.

Verse 4 goes on to tell us the awesome extent of Solomon’s offerings: And the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there; for that was the great high place: a thousand burnt offerings did Solomon offer upon that alter. How Solomon loved the Lord! Can any of us see ourself in Solomon? On fire for the Lord?

God decided He was gonna pay Solomon a visit. He appeared to him in a dream and invited Solomon to ask anything for himself. Wow! I can think of a thousand things I’d like to ask God for. But do you know what Solomon asked for? Wisdom to be a good King.

I see nothing but humility and sincerity in Solomon’s prayer: O Lord my God, You’ve made me king instead of my father, David, but I am like a little child who doesn’t know his way around. {8} And here I am in the midst of Your own chosen people, a nation so great and numerous they cannot be counted! {9} Give me an understanding heart so that I can govern Your people well and know the difference between right and wrong (1 Kings 3:7-9).

God was soooo pleased with Solomon’s request that He not only gave him wisdom, but long life, fame, national peace, and wealth to boot (1 Kings 3:10-13). No other ruler in history has been singularly and spectacularly blest as Solomon!

With the nation at peace and many of Israel’s enemies paying Solomon tribute, Solomon’s wealth increased enormously. With his wealth he built himself a grandiose palace. He also built an exquisite Temple for the Lord.

Upon the Temple’s completion, he offered his thousands of offerings to God and asked God to continually watch over His people and bless them (1 Kings 8).

God, once again, was moved. And He appeared to Solomon a second time (1 Kings 9). Here’s the gist of what He told Solomon. He said, Solomon, if you remain faithful to Me you will always have a descendant ruling on the throne and I will watch over Israel. And this Temple that you’ve built for Me will always house My presence. However, if you turn your back on Me and serve other gods, I will destroy both this land and this Temple and Israel will no more be feared or respected among the nations.

Can you possibly imagine just how blest Solomon was to have been gifted twice with God’s appearance and to have all worldly might, fame, and riches? Do you think it’s possible for a man so singularly and spectacularly gifted to forget the Lord and turn his back on God? If you didn’t know the story you’d think it was impossible for a person who’s seen the Lord and talked to Him to eventually turn his back on God. But happen it did.

For all his love and zeal for the Lord, Solomon had one major problem. He loved women. All sorts of women from all sorts of nations. He had 700 wives and 300 concubines. And all these women turned his heart away from the Lord. In his love for his wives, he built shrines for their false gods. And, sadder yet, most astoundingly of all, he worshipped these false gods too (1 Kings 11).

Solomon obviously didn’t have any self-control. He didn’t practice self-restraint in his romantic and sexual life. He didn’t obey a clear command of the Lord: The Lord had clearly instructed the people of Israel, ‘You must not marry them (foreigners), because they will turn your hearts to their gods.’ Yet Solomon insisted on loving them anyway (1 Kings 11:2). This last sentence haunts me. It evinces Solomon’s intent to do as he pleased despite the Lord’s command. Like Solomon and a lot of you, I’ve insisted on having my way in spite of whatever God has to say about it.


Solomon did. The whole nation did. To this day, Israel is a mess. Because there was no godly king reigning on the throne.

Let me turn a corner here and speak about the sad condition that we’re in today. I’ll speak for myself. But maybe I speak for you too. We hear very little about the cross today. I’m talking about crucifying and denying self. Saying No to self. Not doing what self wants to do. We just don’t hear a whole lot of sermons about putting self to death. About obeying God no matter what. About not sinning or not disobeying God.

We pretty much live in a time when we do whatever we want to do. We do whatever we think or feel is right in our own eyes. A lot of Christians no longer regard the Bible as a Divine, Authoritative rule of law and life. Astonishingly, many Christians-so-called don’t regard Jesus as God. To them He was human, sinful, and imperfect as ourselves. The God that we grew up believing in no longer exists. He isn’t who we were taught He was. He’s all sorts of gods. He is who we want him, and make him, to be. We disobey God freely and regularly. And we have a thousand and one reasons and excuses why we’re right and the Bible’s wrong.

I’ll say it just so that you’ll hear it. IF WE DON’T PUT CURBS AND LIMITS ON OURSELVES WE’RE HEADED BLINDLY TO HELL. You can think whatever you want to think about me. But the words aren’t mine. Not really. They’re my adaptation of what Paul said in his Epistle: If you live according to the flesh you will die (Romans 8:13).

Solomon had a sin problem that he wouldn’t deal with. He didn’t practice self-restraint. He didn’t put his cross to use. He didn’t stick close to God. He lived flagrantly in disregard and disobedience to God’s command.

Solomon was a pretty smart fella. God gave him more smarts than any one man to date has had, Jesus excepted. But in choosing to live to satisfy his fleshly indulgences he made a pretty dumb mistake. NOT CRUCIFYING OURSELF, YOU SEE, HAS A DUMBING EFFECT ON US:  it makes us spiritually dumber to our unbeknownst.

Instead of loving God with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength, Solomon gave his heart and his love to someone else. He lived to satisfy himself and his flesh. Does he remind any of us of ourself? Do we live as Solomon?

Friends, if you don’t put your cross to good use and die out to self, then, like Solomon, you’re making your worst decision ever. You may not believe me. You may think me wrong to your dying day. But rest assured, you’ll know the truth when you meet up with God. EVERYBODY MEETS GOD FACE-TO-FACE AT LEAST ONCE (Hebrews 9:27, Revelation 20:11-12). I pray your meeting doesn’t make you an obedient-believer-too-late.

Friends, let’s learn from Solomon. Let’s not duplicate his mistake. Let’s return penitently to our Lord for He is ever ready and willing to forgive us. Let God dictate how we live our life. And at the top of our To-do list, let’s find the cross that we’ve lost and get back on it. That’s where we Christians belong. That’s where we can be found. May God bless you richly and empower you to live obediently for Him.



In the course of a twenty-four hour period we make gobs of decisions. Some of these we make with a serious amount of forethought and prayer. Others we make spontaneously with little or no thought as to the consequences or impact our decisions will have—not only for ourselves, but for the many others whose lives are intertwined with ours.

Have you ever thought much about how a single decision can change your life forever? For better or worse?

In these blog posts I’d like to look at the one good decision that some people in the Bible made.

By way of introduction, let me say that sometimes we don’t even know the far-reaching impact of our decisions and actions. In our human frailty we just don’t see the importance of what we said or did. We discount and dismiss the little things we say and do for God and others.

I’d like to tell you a story about a woman who didn’t know she made the best decision ever. She just did what she did and went on with life as usual without realizing the value of what she did.

That’s the way it is with all of us. Sometimes we just don’t know that we’ve made the best decision ever.

Well, now that I’ve whet your appetite, let’s get going with the story.


Luke 21:1-4 tells the story of a poor woman—a widow—who came to the Temple and, before she left, she dropped her offering in the collection box. It wasn’t any big deal really. She gave two small copper coins which make a farthing (KJV from the parallel account in Mark 12:41-44). So what is a farthing?, you ask. A farthing is 1/40th of a denarius. I know it’s Greek to a lot of us. But a denarius is the amount of money that an average worker made for a whole day’s work in this Biblical time period. Some modern translations say she gave what we today would consider to be a penny or a few cents. But that’s not a good gauge for understanding the true value of what she gave.

A denarius, as I said, is the amount of money that an average worker back then made for a whole day’s work. Now let’s suppose in our day that the average worker in America makes $10/hour. That may be way off base for some of you, so just put in whatever you think the average worker today makes per hour. Now let’s suppose a day’s work is 8 hours. In this framework, a denarius by today’s standard is worth $80.

This lady gave two small copper coins that were worth 1/40th of a denarius. By today’s standard, 1/40th of $80 is $2. So what this woman gave was, in our day, two bucks. That’s not a whole lot of money today. It’s a pittance, really. We consider ourselves to be in a really bad financial shape if all we had to our name was two bucks. Well, that’s the point of this story. This woman, being a widow, gave far and away what was really a pittance when you compare it to the vast sums of money that the rich folks were putting in the collection boxes. But the lady stood out from the rest of the givers because she gave the Lord everything she had!

Who of us have ever done such a thing? Yeah, some of us, quite shamefully, only give the Lord two bucks. That’s not a whole lot, considering a lot of us will go out to eat after church and spend a cool ten bucks, even more if we’re feeding the family. Which means we gave the Lord a pittance and kept the lion’s share of what we have to ourselves. Even the rich folks in the Bible story shame us by their generosity in giving. They certainly gave a lot more than our two measly bucks!

Now, just so you don’t feel too bad, giving two bucks is a lot better than not giving anything at all—especially when you have it to give. Not giving any offering to the Lord when you have a job or a source of income, even Social Security or unemployment, is, in my view, the epitome of selfishness. Really, according to Malachi 3:8, when you have money to give, but don’t put anything in the offering, you’re robbing God! It’s bad enough stealing from people. But stealing from God? Wow! That’s serious, folks!

I don’t know about you, but back in my younger, immature days, I was really critical of this widow lady. I mean, yes, I’m glad she gave something. But to give the Lord all the money you have is just plain foolish. What are you gonna live on? Where are you gonna get your next meal? Seriously, I don’t think the Lord’s gonna chide us if we gave Him a buck and kept the other buck for us to live another day.

People ate sparrows back then. You know what they are. They’re tiny little birds. A mite would have gotten her one sparrow. That’ll be a day’s worth of food for her to live on. It’s only wisdom to save or keep enough money for yourself to live and eat for another day.

But she didn’t keep a single buck or cent for herself. She gave it all away! That had to hurt!

If people knew we gave all our money to the Lord or to some other person, would people seriously take pity on us and help us out? I dare say most of us would be critical and not help at all. That will teach him or her not to be foolish! Folks, you’ve got to save what little money you have and use it to take care of yourself! That was me back in the old days. Would I offend you if I told you that’s how some of you are today if you really are that way?

A couple of things just totally amazes me about this story. Naturally, the first thing that comes to mind is this widow lady gave all the money she had to the Lord. I don’t think she was loony or reckless. She must’ve had enough faith to trust the Lord for her next meal and for her daily needs. Or she must’ve loved the Lord enough to obey Him and give Him His share of what she had—and more.

How many of us have that kind of faith or love? We say we love and trust the Lord. But our actions tend to contradict what we say. When have we ever given the Lord all of the money we had?

Remember. This woman’s a widow. And she’s poor. Being poor, she didn’t have a whole lot of money. She didn’t have a bank account or money hidden under her mattress. There wasn’t a Social Security network that gave her a monthly stipend. She lived off of the kindness of family and friends. She gave God all the money she had! You might be critical of her. But I think she’s absolutely amazing! Truth be told, she puts me to shame. 😦

The other amazing thing about this story is our Lord. Luke doesn’t say it, but Mark does. When you piece both accounts together, as Jesus was leaving the Temple He stopped, then took a seat across from the offering boxes. (They weren’t boxes, but Trumpet-shaped.) It was His last week before He died and, being busy as you can imagine, Jesus actually stopped for a few minutes to watch all these people giving their offerings to the Lord.

That’s one thing that I find so amazing: Jesus takes time to watch us give. He knows who’s giving and who’s not. Think the Lord doesn’t take notice of when you give or how much, or how little, you give? You’d better think twice. He’s awfully busy. But He still takes time to watch people give, or else pass by the offering box without giving a dollar or cent.

A second thing about our Lord is, instead of criticizing and chiding this lady for giving God all the money she had, Jesus actually commended her! In fact, in His eyes, the lady actually gave more than what all the rich folks were giving! That doesn’t sound right to us. I mean, come on, two bucks is a pittance when others are giving twenty, fifty, or a hundred bucks, even more, in the offering. But in God’s sight, we out-give those who give more than us when we give Him all the money we have.

So what’s my point? Brethren, be careful who you criticize. Wonder of all wonders, God praises the people we criticize! Ouch! Next time you’re tempted to be critical of somebody, ask yourself if God’s critical of them too. You just might be surprised to find Him commending the person you’re critical of!

I started my blog by saying that sometimes we don’t even realize the importance or value of what we said or did. Sometimes we make the best decision we’ve ever made without ever realizing it. It’s no big deal. We say and do things, then go on with life without giving ourselves a pat on the back for saying something nice to somebody or for doing a good deed for someone else.

As proof, let’s look once again at our Lord and this lady. Jesus didn’t go up to this lady and say, Way to go, lady. You’ve put more money in the box than all the others combined! Instead of telling the woman this, He told it to His disciples.

So what am I saying? The women went on her way and never got to hear the Lord say a good word about what she did. What’s more, the Lord went on to have her good deed recorded in Scripture for succeeding generations of people worldwide to know about her. Chances are she didn’t live long enough to see all the Gospels written and find herself the honored recipient of our Lord’s kind words. She gave what she gave, then went on her way without thinking anymore about it. The Lord honored her at that moment, though to her unawares, and He honored her posthumously by having her offering recorded in Scripture.

How awesome is that? Is your kind word or good deed recorded in Scripture? No way! We weren’t there when Jesus was alive. But I’m telling you, dear friends, that God’s recording your kind words and actions in His Book in Heaven. You may not ever know that you’ve just made your best decision ever. You might not think it’s a big deal. But believe me, God knows just how much your encouraging, complimentary words meant to someone. He knows how much your kindness improved someone else’s life. They’ll remember you and thank you for the rest of their life! God sees you and thanks you too. You may not ever hear Him say a nice word to you about it. But rest assured. He’s writing everything down. And one of these days, when you get to glory, you’ll hear Him say it to your face and you’ll probly just pass out in amazement that the Lord would say such nice things about you in Heaven. Your time’s coming. So keep up the good work. In the words of Galatians 6:9, Don’t get tired of helping others. You will be rewarded when the time is right, if you don’t give up.

Keep on helping others and saying nice, encouraging things to them. Chances are, every time you do that you’re making the best decision ever. On God’s behalf, I thank you for being so nice and for saying a kind word to all the people in your life. May God truly and richly bless you! Thanks for giving me a few moments of your time. 🙂


We all like to have things our way. It’s a natural and normal thing that comes with being human. It’s not necessarily the best, safest, or healthiest thing for us. God has a better way. His way. But sometimes people just can’t tell us differently or convince us otherwise: our way is the best way! It’s this stubborn, inextinguishable belief that’s a huge part of the reason why we like having our way.

As you know full well by now,  things don’t always go the way we planned. It’s a real downer and a source of frustration, disappointment, anger, and tears. But that’s life. And we find a way to go on.

But when things don’t pan out the way God said they would, then that becomes a really really difficult thing for me. I’m a believer. I take God at His Word. When He makes me a promise and I take Him up on that promise, I fully expect Him to do what He said He would do. And when He doesn’t, I go through a serious time of reflection and questioning. Is God’s Word true or not? Of course it is, silly! Then why didn’t it work?

I like to have answers. Sometimes, the answers are easy. Sometimes hard to fathom or digest. Sometimes there aren’t any answers. At least, not right now. Maybe down the road. Maybe never. But whether I understand the reasons or not, I’m still a believer. God expects me to continue believing Him. Continue serving Him. Continue praising Him. And since I’m a preacher, God expects me to continue preaching the Word of truth and life.

The Biblical characters were very much like you and me. They were, in fact, totally human. Just like you and me. Life didn’t always pan out for them too. How they responded and dealt with the mess they were faced with  can be a compass or a lighthouse to get us back on track with the Lord. So, from beyond the grave, as it were, the dead speak and show us how to continue being faithful when it looks as if God isn’t.


Acts 3 tells the story of a beggar who was healed at the Temple. Instead of telling you the story myself, I’m gonna let the Bible do it this time. Take a trip back in time and see yourself as this beggar. You really can’t appreciate the full range of his emotions—his despair, hope, and finally uncontained joy—unless you put yourself in his sandals.

Peter and John went to the Temple one afternoon to take part in the three o’clock prayer service.  (2)  As they approached the Temple, a man lame from birth was being carried in. Each day he was put beside the Temple gate, the one called the Beautiful Gate, so he could beg from the people going into the Temple.  (3)  When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for some money.  (4)  Peter and John looked at him intently, and Peter said, “Look at us!” (5)  The lame man looked at them eagerly, expecting some money.  (6)  But Peter said, “I don’t have any silver or gold for you. But I’ll give you what I have. In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, get up and walk!”  (7)  Then Peter took the lame man by the right hand and helped him up. And as he did, the man’s feet and ankles were instantly healed and strengthened.  (8)  He jumped up, stood on his feet, and began to walk! Then, walking, leaping, and praising God, he went into the Temple with them (Acts 3:1-8).

I worked for a time with handicapped people in a group home. It was there that I gained a new-found, and now life-long, appreciation for everything handicapped people go through. There would be an occasional complaint, but for the most part, they just concentrated on doing the things that we able-bodied people take for granted and do so easily and thoughtlessly. Everything they did, like getting dressed, took a lot of time and effort. But they just kept on plugging away until they did what needed to be done.

Life never really panned out for this lame beggar in our Scripture text. He was born with a deformity in his feet and ankles that kept him from walking. He lived without the hope of healing, at least the medical kind. For the rest of his life, from birth, he was stuck with having to be carried about everywhere he wanted to go. (Why did it take sooo long to invent the wheelchair?) He lived with the stigma of being a beggar. Do you realize how incredibly humbling and humiliating it is to beg? Yet, this fellow did it everyday except the Sabbath, at one of the Temple gates.

Luke tells us that he begged at the Beautiful Gate. Now the Temple had nine gates, eight of which were plated or overlaid with silver and gold. They were all gorgeous and grandiose. But the Beautiful Gate excelled the others in sheer beauty and magnificence. The doors of the gate were overlaid with Corinthian brass of the most expensive and exquisite kind that even gold and silver paled by comparison. It was the main and the largest of the Temple gates. Most of the people who went into the Temple went through this gate. So it was a busy place, and a good place, for a beggar to beg.

What amazes me about this beggar, like the handicapped people of our day, is the guy’s daily routine. His determination. His perseverance. He forced himself to get to the Temple every day, except Sabbath, to beg. He could’ve felt sorry for himself, stayed home, and pine away. Give up on life. Hate God. Turn away from Him. Just wither away and die. It’s tough, really really tough, living everyday when you haven’t got a hope for a better life. But the guy just kept on going, living life the best he could.

But, far and away, what’s even more amazing to me about this guy is what isn’t explicitly said in Scripture. How many times did Jesus pass by this beggar and didn’t heal him? How many times did the apostles do likewise? Jesus was the great Miracle Worker. The renowned Healer. Everybody in Jerusalem knew Him. Everybody recognized Him. Jesus healed gobs and gobs of people throughout Palestine. Even in Jerusalem. He went to the Temple gobs of time. He even healed some folks in the Temple! And some of these folks were lame (Matthew 21:14, John 5:1-9, 9:1-7)! Do you seriously think this beggar was ignorant of Jesus? Not on your life! THIS GUY HAD ONE HOPE OF HEALING AND THAT WAS JESUS. YET, FOR ALL THE TIMES THAT JESUS PASSED HIM JESUS NEVER HEALED HIM!

How disheartening is that? This just isn’t fair! Jesus healed lots of folks, but not me! Why not me? How do you answer these questions? How do you explain the fact that Jesus never healed him when He had the chance to do it?

Like I said at the start, you really can’t feel this guy’s pain unless you put yourself in his sandals. Maybe some of you already have his sandals on. You’ve lived with the pain and the disease for years. You’ve said your prayers. You’ve cried your endless rivers of tears. You’ve held tightly to the hope of healing. Only to have them dashed, time after time, when Jesus passed you by and didn’t heal you like He healed so many others, even others in your very same condition. How do you go on with life without the bitterness?Disappointment. Resentment. Criticism. Complaint. Disillusionment. Hopelessness. Self-pity. Depression. And despair. It’s tough to go on!

But you’ve got to do it! You’ve got to find a way to get past the heartache of unanswered prayer, the pain of an unhealed disease. Somehow, this beggar found a way to do that. He cried himself to bed that night after Jesus passed him by. He got up the next morning. And by some miracle of persistence, he got his clothes on, ate, then went back to the Temple to beg. HE DIDN’T LET UNANSWERED PRAYER STOP HIM FROM LIVING. STOP HIM FROM GOING ON. STOP HIM FROM BELIEVING IN GOD! Look at verse 8 once again. What did the guy do after he was healed? He praised God, loudly I’m sure, with excitement and enthusiasm. People who’ve given up on God, who hate God, who are mad at God, don’t praise or acknowledge God. The fact that this beggar went into the Temple, praising God, tells me he was faithful and true to God even when God didn’t heal him.

Do you see what I’m trying to say? WHEN THINGS DON’T PAN OUT DON’T GIVE UP! PERSEVERE! KEEP ON GOING! You may not understand why God didn’t heal you. Why He hasn’t healed you. You’re tempted to think you’re an exception. He’s never gonna heal you. It’s not His will to heal you. A thousand questions, doubts, and thoughts race through you mind. The devil’s talking to you, trying to keep you stuck in bed and let the world, let life, pass you by. Friends, he’ll rob you of your faith, your hope, your joy, your strength, your life…if you let him. DON’T LET HIM! HOLD ON TO YOUR HOPE. AS LONG AS YOU’RE ALIVE, AS LONG AS JESUS IS ALIVE, YOU’VE GOT HOPE!  How do I know that? Because you’ve got His Word! Heaven and earth may pass away, but My Word will never pass away (Matthew 24:35).

Granted, we all have a time to die. When it’s time to die it’s time to die and no promise of healing , no amount of faith and praying, will keep you from dying. Death’s promised too and that’s one promise that God’s gotta keep too (Hebrews 9:27). But I’m not talking about the promise of dying. I’m talking about the promise of healing. God gave you His promise of healing (Exodus 15:26, Mark 16:18, James 5:14-15). If you don’t want it or don’t believe it, that’s between you and God. So, at this point, I’m not talking to you. But if you’re believing for healing, if you once believed for healing, if you want to believe for healing, then believe and don’t give up believing. GOD MADE YOU A PROMISE AND YOU HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO BELIEVE AND EXPECT HIM TO KEEP IT NO MATTER HOW DIFFICULT OR IMPOSSIBLE YOUR SITUATION MAY BE! GOD IS NO LIAR! HE WILL KEEP HIS WORD IF YOU HOLD FAST TO THE END AND BELIEVE!

In hindsight, knowing everything we know, knowing how history later panned out and Peter eventually healed this beggar; we can say IT WAS A MATTER OF TIMING. GOD HAS A TIME FOR EVERYTHING TO HAPPEN. HE HAS AN EXACT TIME FOR HEALING. AND UNTIL THAT RIGHT AND PERFECT TIME COMES YOU’RE NOT GONNA GET HEALED. NOT YET. BUT DON’T WORRY! DON’T BE DISHEARTENED! DON’T GIVE UP HOPE! CHIN UP! CHEER UP! GOD KEEPS HIS PROMISE! May God bless you, dear saint of God, and fill you with all hope, grace, and peace in believing.


You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.  (6)  Though He was God, He did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.  (7)  Instead, He gave up His divine privileges; He took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When He appeared in human form,  (8)  He humbled Himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross, Philippians 2:5-8.

Most of you who know me well know that I don’t believe Jesus was born on Christmas. That doesn’t make me a heretic or a radical. And, just so you know that I’m so totally fair and honest with the facts, let me hasten to say that no one, but no one, ‘cept God Himself, knows exactly when Jesus was born. Having said that, however, the preponderance of Biblical testimony points to Jesus’ birth in the fall, sometime in late September thru October. But definitely not anywhere near December 25. It isn’t a big deal to me and it’s not worth fighting over. But I just happen to believe that if we Christians are gonna stand for the truth and insist that our beliefs, actions, and lifestyle be in accordance with the truth; then we’d be a lot closer to the truth if we celebrated Christ’s birth in the fall.

Having said that, today is Christmas 2013 and I started thinking about what ran through Jesus’ mind when the Father came to Him one day in Heaven’s glory and said, Son, I’ve got a plan to save mankind. But in order to do that you’re gonna have to go down to Earth, become a human being, and eventually die a very painful and humiliating death on a Roman cross. It’s a lot to ask, I know. But think about it and get back with me, okay?

Jesus was God. And, being God, He knew the end from the beginning. He knew what His life on Earth would be like before He even took His first breath as a human being. Think of the incomparable grandeur of Heaven’s palace. Now think of a stable with smelly animals; the poo and filth that’s typical of a stable. Think about rags for a robe. Then think about having to obey a very imperfect mom and dad. The Father’s the only Person He’s ever obeyed and had to obey. Think about being made fun of, being ridiculed, rejected, and called a deceiver. People even called Him the devil! Think of being pushed around, slapped, whipped, tortured, and made a public spectacle as He was nailed to the cross. I can imagine the pain and humiliation He must have felt. But the thing that I can’t imagine is Him bearing our sins, taking the punishment for them, and suffering the abandonment of His Father while He hung on the cross. The Father had never done that before. I know what it’s like having God feel so distant, so silent, so absent, from my life. I’m sure you too know the feeling. And you know it’s just plain dreadful not having God anywhere near. I would dread that so much that, if God ever abandoned me, I’d rather die right there on the spot than live a second more without His presence and love.

Anyhow, I think about all this and I know that Jesus knew full well what He’d be getting into if He consented to the Father’s plan. But, wonders of all wonders, He agreed to it and became one of us. Why? Because that’s how much He loved us and wanted to save us. But, love aside, Jesus was so totally submitted and obedient to the Father that even if it meant being humiliated and killed at the hands of sinful men, He was gonna obey the Father no matter what. He was gonna obey even if it killed Him.

Each one of us is at a level or a point of obedience. There are some things that we would obey God in. And truthfully, there are some things that we just won’t do for God. There’s no way we would obey God. Some would rather die than obey God in a certain matter or area of life.

I look at Christ. He was so totally willing to obey.  Psalms 40:6-8 puts it this way: You take no delight in sacrifices or offerings. Now that You have made me listen, I finally understand—You don’t require burnt offerings or sin offerings.  (7)  Then I said, “Look, I have come. As is written about me in the Scriptures:  (8)  I take joy in doing Your will, my God, for Your instructions are written on my heart.”

Back in the youthful days of my generation Andrae Crouch was the biggest name in Gospel music. One of the songs he sang was entitled Yes, Lord, yes. The lyrics go like this: I’ll say Yes, Lord, yes; To your will and to your way; I’ll say yes, Lord, yes; I will trust you and obey; When your Spirit speaks to me; With my whole heart I’ll agree; And my answer will be yes, Lord, yes.

How about you, dear friend? How far along are you in your obedience to God? Are you willing to obey God even if it kills you? Are you ready to live for God? Ready to live in obedience to God in everything He asks and requires of you? If your answer, like mine, is Yes, Lord, yes, can you prove it? Like Christ, when you make obeying and pleasing God your life’s desire and ambition, you’ll find that obedience really isn’t as hard as we’ve made it out to be. God gives grace to enable obedience. I pray that for the rest of this year and the coming year God will shower you with His grace and that you’ll experience His love, His presence, and His favor.



Some people love challenges. They’ll look at something new. Something hard. And they’ll take up the challenge of doing it just to get the satisfaction or thrill of knowing they can do something they’ve never done before. Something hard. Challenging. Exhilarating.

 Just so you know, I am not that way at all. I am 1,000,000,000,000% a comfort-zone type of guy. I like doing the doable. That means it’s easy and doesn’t demand a whole lot of  my time, effort, or thinking. When it comes to what’s new, difficult, or challenging, you can generally count me out, folks. I’m not touching it with a ten-foot pole!  

 I won’t do the difficult—not unless I’m forced to—because life already has too many difficulties and challenges. I don’t need to  add to them. I don’t need any more trials or challenges!  I’m heading into my golden years and I love to relax, take it easy, and do what I love doing most. Can you guess what that is? It’s studying  the Bible and writing. I just love spending time with the Lord because He talks to me a lot of times—not audibly, but in my spirit—and He tells me lots of really neat stuff. Stuff that I’ve just got to share with you. This blog is a perfect example of the stuff God gives me when I spend time with Him. I love Him. I love what I’m doing. But I dread doing the difficult.

 Here’s a question for you. When the Lord asks you to do something difficult…no, strike that. When the Lord tells you to do something difficult, something you really don’t want to do, something you think is impossible, something that’s a Are you out of your mind? I can’t do that! type of thing; what do you do?

 Just so you know, you’re not the only one who’s had to do something really really hard. You’re not alone. We’ve all been there and done that. The biblical characters weren’t any different from us. In fact, they were exactly like us. Human. I’d like to draw on their life’s experiences and, from beyond the grave, as it were, let them share with us what we’ve got to do when the Lord gives us our Mission I M possible. By God’s grace, we can do what God’s counting on us to do! Here’s how.


David the King woke up one morning and got this hankering to number all the guys who could fight in his army (1 Chronicles 21:1). Poor guy didn’t know it was the devil who gave him this brilliant idea. (So you think the devil doesn’t give you any bright ideas? You’d better read verse 1 again. He does!) Anyways, Joab, David’s lead General, didn’t think this was a good idea. Unless God told you to count, you just didn’t count. That’s because you’d soon put your trust in your numbers and army to save you, not the Lord. So the General protested the order. The King, however, being the King, prevailed and Joab went out reluctantly and took the census.

Well, when it was all said and done, David felt guilty about what he’d done. Joab was right. He shouldn’t have made the head count. But it was too late. The numbers were in.

Now you would think that God wouldn’t punish anyone who felt bad about what he did. But sin carries a price and a consequence. When we choose to sin we’re automatically bound to suffer sin’s consequences. It’s the law of cause and effect. The law of sowing and reaping.

God doesn’t always do this, but in this particular case with David He gave David a choice of what punishment he’d have to suffer: (1) three years of famine; or (2) three months running from his enemies; or (3) three days of plague (1 Chronicles 21:11-12).

David knew God to be a very merciful God. His mercies are soooo great! David’s thinking God will be merciful. The plague can’t be all that bad. Sure, people are gonna get sick. Some might even die. But God’s soooo merciful and He’s not gonna let the plague get out of hand. That just won’t happen! He’s merciful! So, after thinking things through, David chose the three-day plague as his punishment.

To his horror and shocked surprise, the plague was truly and unimaginably catastrophic. On the third day of the plague, seventy-thousand people were dead on his account! Seventy-thousand! And God wasn’t done yet. The angel of destruction was headed to Jerusalem to finish his work when God had a change of heart and called for an end to the destruction. Were it not for that, thousands more would have died!

Seventy-thousand dead clearly wasn’t what David was expecting! He was stunned! This wasn’t how it was supposed to be! God’s merciful! What happened to His mercy? When David grasped the awful reality that confronted him, he, I’m sure quite bitterly, cried out to God and said, I’m the one who has sinned and done wrong! But these people are as innocent as sheep—what have they done? Let Your anger fall against me and my family (1 Chronicles 21:17). I can so hear, and feel, the anguish of his soul. It’s not easy living with the knowledge that you’ve killed seventy-thousand innocent folks.

David, I’m sure, isn’t feeling very good right now. He’s probably got a real attitude towards God. He’s human, remember. Just like us. He’s probably feeling really angry and ugly with God.

Here comes the truly incredible, difficult part. Do you know what God tells David to do? Build Me an altar and worship Me (1 Chronicles 21:18).

David’s probably saying, You’ve got to be kidding me! Are You for real? I’m feeling really really ticked right now. And You want me to worship You? How hard is that? Ever tried singing a song, let alone praising God, when you’re ballistic or in the depths of depression? God, we just don’t do that sort of thing. At least not right now. Wait till I calm down and feel better. I’ll worship you later. When I feel like it.

David’s feeling really bad. You know it. You feel his pain. He really doesn’t want to build an altar. He’s not in the mood. But he knows he’s got to do it because that’s the only way he’s gonna stop the killing. He disobeyed the Lord once and seventy-thousand folks died, no thanks to him. David can’t disobey the Lord again and have more innocents die on his account.

So reluctantly, tearfully, David builds the altar and offers a burnt and a peace offering to the Lord (1 Chronicles 21:26). Just like in Elijah’s day, fire came down from Heaven and consumed the offerings. God told the angel to stop the killing. And when David saw what was happening, do you know what he did? He offered more sacrifices to the Lord…only, this time, I’m very sure, he did so willingly with a heart full of holy fear and gratitude that the killing was done (1 Chronicles 21:28).

Folks, when the Lord tells you to do something that you just absolutely dread to do, can’t possibly do; just do it. You can do it. Otherwise God wouldn’t have told you to do it. Zip that lip. Get those attitudes right. And do it!  The consequences of not doing it are not gonna be pretty. You’ll regret disobeying the Lord. I guarantee you that. I can even hear a chorus of  Amens coming from beyond the grave. So buckle down. Chin up. And just do it!

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