Monday, July 30, 2012


It is interesting what our hearts hold. Inside each of us are feelings, thoughts, meditations, hurts, dreams, issues, anger, frustrations, hopes, faith, love, and the list goes on. Only God knows what is inside our hearts. He knows everything.

Last week while enjoying a few days away with some of our grands, Jennifer told me of a funny conversation she and little Claudia had.

They were having a good time together while we were all camping out at the beach. Claudia told her that she wished that they were sisters and that Jennifer wasn't her mother. That sounded real cute and sweet until she continued. She said that if they were sisters that they could have so much fun. She didn't stop there. She further said that if Jennifer was her sister and not her mother then she wouldn't have to obey her.


That says it all.

What we all want is fun, pleasure and a good time.

Just don't tell me what to do. Don't correct me or mess up my plans.

We all got a real laugh out of that because there is some truth in Claudia's personal honesty that is in all of us. She just spoke from her heart.

Obviously Claudia loves her mother dearly. She just wants to do what she wants to do.

Yet, all of us need wisdom, correction, and guidance from a higher source. We each so desperately need the Lord and His help in our lives.

Friday, July 27, 2012


Yesterday I took Claudia and Lorenzo on a hike at Hanna Park. Actually we went on a morning hike and an afternoon hike too. It was hot and both were really long hikes. We took water and snacks and hydrated a lot.

 Here is the problem.

We didn't know where the trails went or how long they were. Not good. I should be smarter than that. The afternoon hike was the longer and worse of the two. We hiked over 1 and 1/2 hours. Not sure how far. The kiddies did great and I took them to the water park after each hike where they played more. Amazing! I sat and watched!


 I'll bet you one thing. I'll have a map on the next hike. I'll know where I'm going and how long it will take. Hiking maps as well as road maps are important but not as important as eternal maps. I have already read my eternal map today. I know where I'm going and look forward to being there forever.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


We are all stubborn including me. It amazes me. Why do we feel we can get away with it or profit from it. In my devotions today I read about King Jereboam whom God showed unusual mercy. The Bible records that "even after this (God's mercy) Jereboam did not change his evil ways..." How stubborn! But not unlike you or me. Here is the end result. "...This was the sin of the house of Jereboam that led to its downfall and to its destruction from the face of the earth." How sad! God help me to get over my stubborn ways and humble myself in obedience to God. That is the only way to lasting blessing.

Monday, July 23, 2012


I am well into reading the Bible all the way through since the beginning of this year for the third time. My goal is to read through the Bible four times this year, God willing.

What have I learned?

Two basic things.

One, God is good. I mean, God is really good.

Two, mankind is really stubborn. Maybe you could add that mankind is hardheaded, bullheaded, and has a very short memory.

Now, least you agree with me too quickly, that means all of us.



And everyone else.

We are all really shortsighted, short-memoried, and short-committed.

I get amazed at how quickly I forget the promises and faithfulness of God. I forget His goodness. I fail in my commitments even though He has never failed me.

All I know to do is call on His name for mercy, His help, and His strength. With His help I can do all things and finish my race and win my crown.

That's my goal. I want to finish strong.

Friday, July 20, 2012


No, I haven't broken any bones at least not lately. When I was seven or eight, I broke my right arm. I fell through the monkey bars at school and severely broke my arm so that it looked like a snake. Uh, that hurt. They put me in the hospital and did surgery to reset it. That wasn't a pretty sight.

This week, my little grandson Cole broke his left arm in the elbow region. He wasn't happy about that break either. I think he was really unhappy in that he will have a cast that will keep him out of swimming. He really didn't like that.

Bones break, but thankfully they heal. Aren't you glad the Lord designed our bodies to heal. I wrote in my last blog about the healing power of the Lord. He heals in several ways. He designed out bodies to naturally heal. God has given us doctors who are gifted to help heal. Of course, we can help ourselves by doing positive things to aid in overcoming sickness. Prevention is also worth a pound of cure when it comes to taking care of our bodies.

I am so sorry that little Cole had that mishap, but I am thankful it wasn't worse. He fell, but broken bones heal with God's help and some assistance from the doctor.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Does God really heal people today? Now that is a deep subject that doesn't have a short, easy answer. Here is my attempt to address it.

Yes, God does heal today. Is everyone healed? No, at least not immediately. Why aren't people healed?  There are numerous reasons for not being healed.

Lack of faith is one reason. Sin is another reason. But lack of faith or sin are not the reasons that some are not healed immediately. The Bible records that our Lord noted that one man's illness was even for the glory of God. Then, our Lord healed him.

Ultimately all sickness will end for those who love the Lord. There will be no sickness in heaven. God does heal. Sometimes the healing is in heaven.

Then, how should we pray when there is sickness?

We should pray in faith. We should pray believing. We should pray in agreement. We should pray according to God's will. We should pray that all hindrance will be removed that would restrict  our healing. We should keep praying. We should pray with thanksgiving and praise. Then we trust God for healing immediately or in His timing.

Sometimes we need others to pray for us. The Apostle James encouraged believers to pray for one another and to anoint with oil as we pray with faith. There are times that in our illness we need others to have faith with us and for us. God honors united faith.

I don't know why all people aren't immediately healed. Some are. Others get their healing in time. Some have to wait until they get to heaven.

The Lord has instantly healed me. A number of years ago I had a very painful, chronic back condition. it was terribly painful. One evening as I was sitting on the front pew at church the Lord instantly healed me. I haven't suffered with that since. I have prayed for people who the Lord instantly healed. Other times the headings have been more progressive over time.

God is the healer. It is ours to pray, believe, obey, and give thanks. He does the work.

So if you need healing today, ask in faith without doubting. He will heal. Trust Him today. I plan on praying and believing for those who have physical needs until I reach heaven. Our Lord is the mighty healer.

Monday, July 16, 2012


I have lots of passwords that keep my connections secure on the Internet. I haven't counted how many but there is a fairly large number. Some of them are noted in my head. All of them are written down in a secure place. I change them from time to time. They are irritating but needed.

One of them would be impossible to break. It is for access in my Wifi at home. It is a lengthy, difficult  code that takes several attempts to enter for some folks visiting in our home. I know no one will never break it. That is the way passwords and codes are supposed to be, hard to break.

Theft, robbery, and stolen identities are huge in today's world. It happens every day. I have had my credit cards used by thieves across  America in places that I have never traveled. Thankfully, the credit card companies took care of everything for me. Their thefts have run into the hundreds of dollars for items that I would never purchase.

Passwords get you into desired places. They are the entrance codes. Without them, you don't pass through. Isn't that what is going to happen when we stand at the pearly gates. We'll need the password. We'll need to know how to enter. There is only one password.


Friday, July 13, 2012


God called me to preach the Gospel. That calling has been lived out in various venues of service, but preaching the Gospel has always been the centermost heart of my call. When God "called" me into the ministry way back in 1968 it was a very clear and specific call. It was impacting and forceful. I knew exactly what God was calling me to do which was to preach His Word.

However, the primary calling to "preach the Word" has been lived out in various settings. I have served as a pastor, district departmental head, evangelist, and seminar speaker. I have also been involved in writing and TV ministry and done some radio work also.

But the primary calling has always been to "preach the Word."

I have strived to preach the whole counsel of God. I have preached the full gospel message. I have tried to make it relevant. I have tried to preach in the power of the Holy Spirit. I have taught the Word to exhort, guide, enlighten, and sometimes even rebuke. The goal has always been the same-to preach the Gospel, the Good New of the Kingdom of God.

It is thrilling when you see God's hand manifest into the lives of those God has put into your charge. It is also thrilling to have them share their appreciation and thanks for your ministry. My goal has been to preach the Word. Most of my adult life has been spent making pastoral investments into the lives of God's people I know His Word will not return void.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


We are having our annual Kid's Crusade this week at church. It is our version of VBS, Vacation Bible School, that we used to have in all our churches. Some still do it that way. The kiddies love it and have a great time. It is lots of work and effort on the part of many within our church.

It is worth it?


Why do we do it?

Because small hearts are big sponges. They soak up whatever is around. They have open hearts with lots of faith. The question is where will they put their faith? Who will fill their hearts? What will they believe?

I accepted Christ into my heart when I was around 6 or so. I still remember the feeling that I had of Christ coming into my life. I knew that I was forgiven. I knew God was alive. I knew that I was saved. No one will ever convince me otherwise. I know what happened.

Each night this week I have watched little ones with open hearts invite Christ into their lives. I have seen their tears. I have noted the change. I have seen into their tender hearts.

Again, it is worth it all.

We have two van loads that we pick up from apartment projects to come to our church. Many of them are immigrants from Africa. Their lives have been impacted by war, hurt, and disappointment. But here they are finding Christ's love. It is a breathe of hope and a better destiny. It is giving them eternal life.

One of them told me Monday night that this was "the best church I have ever gone to." His life is being changed from the inside out. That makes it worth it all.

Monday, July 9, 2012


Oops, I didn't post on Friday. I think that is the first time on my regular schedule of posting on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday since I have been blogging that I didn't post or at least give notice of a break. My schedule during the last week or so has been all over the place. I didn't have Internet access a couple of days last week. Plus I was busy!

More of our grands are here. Wow! Wow! Wow!
Busy, busy, and more busy.

That are all so cute, fun, smart, and active!

After church yesterday, Claudia passed me in the church aisle and said, "Great preach, Papa!"

That was her was of letting her Papa know that she liked what he did. I think that is one of the best compliments I have ever received.

Eight year olds are rather insightful. They don't say things unless it is in there hearts. What is inside comes outside. They still have pure and honest hearts. You know what Jesus said about becoming like a little child.

On another note, Wanda is such a wonderful wife, mother, and nana. She thinks ahead and works for things to go well. That is love in action. Someone said, "Love is what love does." That is Wanda. She goes beyond the call of duty. That is just one of so many reasons I love her.

So we're busy this week with kiddies, a Kid's Crusade at church, and general living.

God is good!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


I am thankful for many things. The list includes:

1. Knowing Jesus
2. A wonderful wife
3. Children who love God
4. Good health
5. Godly parents
6. The privilege of preaching the Gospel
7. Great friends

8. Food, shelter, and material blessings
9. A loving church to pastor
10. And America

Today we celebrate Independence Day. Fireworks will explode, family gatherings will abound, and celebrations will be everywhere. America is the greatest Nation on earth. God has blessed America beyond comprehension.

When I have traveled to other parts of the world, I felt like kissing the ground when returning home. There is no place like America.

So today, I say three cheers for America, and even more cheers to God for His blessings on our Land. God bless America. May we turn again as a people to our Creator and Source of life.

Today, Jennifer and her kiddies are arriving on the Mainland in Tampa. I can't wait to get a hug and kiss. It has been one long year since I have seen them. Oh, how I have missed them. Can't wait!

Monday, July 2, 2012


Waiting is not easy for anyone. There is a time to do, to act, to move forward. There are times when everything is clear and you know what to do. There are times when you know that you know. I know those times. I know the voice of God. He has spoken to my heart. I have followed His directions.

Then there are times when you must pause.

Pause bottons are good buttons too. We often don't enjoy using them because we're more "right now" kind of people. I have learned that God doesn't always work in my timetable. There are times I want to move His hand "right now" for "my" intended objectives.

God doesn't work on my timetables. His timing is always perfect regardless of how I might measure life. I have often felt that in my ministry that one of the toughest parts of it is to know when to put my hand to something and when to wait and let Him work. God does use both methods, but I like to quickly help Him out.

I am definitely expecting good things in my life and ministry and for our children and family. God has great things in store. I believe it.

I am waiting for the fullness of His plan. I will be faithful to follow and wait until He acts.

He is able!