Monthly Archives: October 2013

21 posts

Death, like life, is not random

From time to time I will post some brief thoughts about the last 3 ½ years of my wife’s life. As many of you know, my wife, Ruth, was diagnosed with the most lethal form of brain cancer on April 1, 2010. Since that day, God has proven himself faithful beyond all that Ruth and I could ask or imagine. She went home at her Father’s call October 19th.    Ruth immediately turned to Psalm 139:16 as one of her anchors:   Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them,     the days that were formed for me,     when as yet there was none of them.   Some quick thoughts:   Ruth did not […]

Halloween – the ultimate trick or treat

Halloween is viewed by many as a night of family fun, fantasy dress up, and sweet rewards. Millions participate in Halloween festivities for these reasons. If this was all there was to Halloween there would be nothing to be concerned about. But not everything is at it appears to be. There is a dark-side to Halloween.    The last few weeks cable channels have flooded TV screens with horror movies specializing in blood, fear, and gore. Modern imaging technology makes these films shockingly realistic.  Satanists claim Halloween as their holy day. The occult revels in this dark celebration.    The contrast is stunning. One side of the Halloween coin is bright, fun and exciting. The other side represents the darkest […]

Stories for Life

Man was made for stories. We remember stories. We laugh at stories. We cry over stories. We are motivated by stories. Why? Because God made us to love stories. The legacy of a culture is told by narratives, not by encyclopedias. Even in a culture as bent on moving away from God as our current one is, there are still biblical stories etched into the minds of people in our culture. These biblical narratives transcend ideological barriers. The Prodigal Son, The Good Samaritan, the Christmas Story, and others speak of a God who may not be as easily dismissed as cultural elitists believe. While these narratives are often marred and confused in the culture, they still remain, and they still […]

Marketing Strategy

Let’s evaluate the strategies of enlisting recruits of the two opposing forces involved in spiritual warfare. We will start with the plan of the Kingdom of Heaven. It is a straightforward approach and could be stated like this:   Life is to be lived for the glory and honor of God. Man has rebelled against that reality and is in need of rescue. Strictly on his own initiative, through the sacrificial death of his son, God rescues people from darkness and brings them into the kingdom of light for all eternity.   That is the strategy of one side. Here is the strategy of the other side, the kingdom of this world. It is also straightforward.   Satan hates mankind […]

Life makes you weary, Jesus brings rest

The God who sustains the universe by his mighty power also cares for you. Do not disconnect your weary moments from the rest of your life. God is there for all of it.   The truth that you will never hear on the 6 p.m. news is that since the Fall, life itself will make you weary; Every other reason under the sun will be given to explain why you are weary. But the one reason that really matters is lost in political correctness—your weariness is part of the impact of sin and the resulting curse.    The truth is that successes are muted by failures. Happiness is often quickly followed by sorrow. Good days and bad days intermingle. Sin […]

Thought for the Lord’s Day

Because of the commitment of God to his word and his covenant, we have a sure hope.    My wife, Ruth, was a faithful servant of her Lord. The Lord did redeem her as he promised. Today that promise was kept as Ruth went to be with her God as she left behind her dead body and entered into the wonder of eternity. The hope of heaven is not a random one. It is made sure because of the commitment of God. May this hope motivate you and change you in all that you are and do.   “Remember these things, O Jacob,     and Israel, for you are my servant; I formed you; you are my servant;     O Israel, you […]

The Lion of Judah

If we are to live a life that is wise, it is imperative that we understand we have an Enemy who attempts to discredit the wonders of God with counterfeit musings. This discrediting can take the form of misinterpreting the good things that God does. For example, as magnificent as a sunset may be, it is not the ultimate that God does. That ultimate is reserved for heaven and the new earth. But the enemy wants you to think that what you see now is all there is.    Also, we have grown accustomed to seeing breathtaking imagery on the big screen. But even these images pale in comparison to the reality of the world that remains unseen to us. […]

Understand your limitations

Clint Eastwood may not be your first choice for understanding truth. But there is one quote of his that does resonate with biblical truth. Eastwood says “a man has got to understand his limitations.” Proverbs 3:7 says “don’t be wise in your own eyes.” In other words if you think your own understanding is something you can rely on, you are headed for trouble.   The structure of Hebrew wisdom literature, of which Proverbs is a part, uses a literary device called parallelism to highlight important truths. In this case, being wise in your own eyes is contrasted exercising the fear of the Lord and turning from evil.  If you think you can trust yourself, you will not exhibit a […]

A Psalm of the Gospel

Psalm 130 is a song of ascents. This means that the Israelites sang this psalm as they traveled to Jerusalem for one of the three annual sacred assemblies. The 3rd and 4th verses of this psalm contain the essence of the gospel.   If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand?   But with you there is forgiveness; therefore you are feared.   The psalmist acknowledges that no one can stand before God apart from his mercy. Then, he reminds us that there is forgiveness with God. This wonderful truth blows the psalmist away, so his response to the forgiveness of God is a holy and awed fear.   Ask God to let the […]

Sexual purity – something to celebrate

Preparing your children to combat sexual sin should begin very early. It is never too soon to say that marriage is a wonderful blessing from God. When any discussions of sexuality arise, you should point out what is appropriate for marriage and what is not.  As your children grow older, your explanations will need to be more specific, until finally you arrive at the franker discussions needed to address the onset of puberty. But in the context of ongoing conversations, you have the privilege of positioning sexual behavior positively, within marriage. This sets the stage for you to have natural opportunities to demonstrate that when people choose to disobey God’s directives for sexuality, bad things happen.   Parents, you must […]