Can you walk in heaven while you are here on Earth?


According to the apostle Paul we have a place in heaven even while we are still here on Earth. In Ephesians 2:4-6 says it this way:  4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) 6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

When we pray to our Creator, God, and we do so in faith there are times when we may see the floor of Heaven. When you get a glimpse of the floor of Heaven, you are seeing the golden streets which make up the streets of Heaven. It is likely that you will think it is a dream or some sort of illusion, but those don’t usually happen while we are awake. Can I prove that I saw this? No more than I can prove that my feelings are real or that my imagination can conjure up worlds while I read a book, so I would say that there is no way for me to prove any of this. But the look of reality and the solid feel of it is all that I can describe to anyone. So call me crazy or insane if you wish, but I have experienced this at least once maybe a couple of times.

How I wished at those times I could just take another step and be there with my loved ones who have gone before me. One day soon. How are we to respond to someone who claims to have this happen in their life? I can tell you that most people are not going to tell anyone about this because they will be afraid of being sent to a mental hospital. Only those of us who know how real it felt and can still feel, at times, to have gold bricks as pavement under your feet.

While it is true that we won’t experience the actual feel of gold under our feet until we get there, a vision from God which feels real is the best you can ask for while on this side of the veil. Remember, we are only separated from God and our loved ones by the veil of life here and the different and glorious life that we will experience in God’s Presence. I am looking forward to the day when that trumpet sounds!

If you haven’t given your heart to Jesus, it is time to get busy seeking Him for your Savior. If you have ever felt the Spirit calling you during a service or when you feel convicted about your life and your mistakes then you truly need to come to a saving knowledge and belief in Him for your salvation. I pray that any of you who read this will turn to Jesus for your salvation soon because I don’t think we have many more years to wait. Seek Jesus as your savior while you have the time.

We are finite


Much of our lives are spent seeking for a reason or a purpose for our life. We go through life trying to find the meaning for our existence but many times we stumble over the real meaning in such a hurry until we miss it. This is the problem in most everyone’s life because it usually takes a crisis of some kind to bring our focus back to what we should have been doing all along. Not only washing our hands but being careful about where we sneeze and cough, but it has taken a virus to get the whole world to realize what is important and how to take care of each of us and those in our family who are important to us.

But…why does it take a crisis to bring the best of us to the top? Why do we have to be tried in some way in order to be better at being the people that we could be all the time? It seems that Christians and…well, people in general, tend to do better or try to be better when we are under the pressure of a trial, no matter what it might be. Whether it is persecution, like the early church was put through, or war or diseases Christians tend to thrive and dig deeper into our faith when we are put under pressure. Kinda like coal or carbon, when put through enough heat and pressure it will turn into a beautiful diamond.

Does life just do this or do we bring these trials on ourselves? I believe that it is a combination of circumstances and the will of God which brings these trials our way. Trials do tend to get rid of the dross and refine our faith into a more pure form of faith which cannot be shaken. Then of course there are some people who will go through the same trials and blame God for their “bad luck”. They will do this and then just turn away from Him and the love that He has for them, even when they know about His love and can possibly feel it yet they will still refuse to turn toward Him for salvation or healing.

Humanity has always been strange in that way. Some of us will lean toward our Savior during times of trial and some of us will blame Him for these trials and turn away from Him. Truthfully, the church grew faster during those times of persecution than at any other time during its history. The emperor of Rome was trying to stop this “cult” and stomp it out and it just kept growing. If you read the history of the church, no matter where the persecution was or the type of trials that it was put through, the church still grew in number of converts and in the places where it was known, where Jesus was known.

The trial that our world is going through right now is not localized but the faith of the people who are being tested during this time will be refined and polished to a point of reflecting Jesus and His message even more during this and afterward as well. God knows exactly how to make Himself known and if it takes a crisis like this virus which has everyone on edge and fearful, then He will allow it to happen. But we need to draw closer to Him during this and don’t blame Him for the outcome but thank Him for it, regardless of how gut-wrenching the pain is or how much you are tempted to blame Him for someone dying from this virus. He will see you through it and give you the strength to glorify Him regardless of the outcome.

Seek Him for your strength and your comfort because He is the only One Who can provide you with both.

Wisdom from an old Master…


We use his wisdom more than we do the wisdom of God. What does that say about our society?

I realize that he is an imaginary and fictional being but many people say that God is too. So why do we listen more to Yoda’s advice and try to live by it rather than the wisdom which is found in God’s Word?

I believe that it has to do with belief and the truth. We know that the movie which Yoda is in is just fictional therefore it was a figment of someone’s imagination before it became a movie and a part of our society and our vocabulary. So why can’t we give God’s Word the same weight of truth that we tend to give to the creations which come from Hollywood? Because we are afraid of the absolute Truth found in God’s Word, even if we don’t really believe in Him. We are afraid of finding the real Person of Jesus and finding out about God Himself and His love for us.

Fear and pride keep us from seeking Him and learning from His Word. We are afraid that when we find the real Savior, Jesus, we will be convicted of our sins and the fact that we need Him as our Savior. Pride gets in our way because we think that we are good enough to walk the pathway which brings us to the gate of Heaven, yet no person is able to walk that pathway without repenting of your sins and asking Jesus into your heart. Then follow His example during your life and learn about the life that God has for His own. Will you be able to live this life perfectly? No, but with the Holy Spirit guiding you and teaching you, it will be a bit easier to walk it. It won’t be without problems but with Him teaching you and strengthening you, you will make it through anything.

We are not controlled by the media


That is a good statement but if you’ve been shopping lately you know it isn’t true. Our country is in panic mode because of a virus which is less deadly than the flu! Some doctors have said as much in the media but no one seems to be listening. God is still in control and this virus and the mania, which has been brought on by a media which is out of control, will pass and we will forget about it in a few months. The problem is that since this is a world-wide hysteria it is causing the economy of the entire world to grind to a screeching halt. Everyone is afraid of everyone else. Pray for each other, go to church (regardless of the ban on crowds), seek His guidance in this situation because He is in control. God can take care of all of this if we will seek Him for our comfort and our healing.

The media, even on the Internet, has too much power these days. I pray for everyone who has a cold or the flu to just stay at home and take care of yourself. Pray and read God’s Word because He can and will heal in His time and in His way. Pray for those around you and for our nation and it’s leaders. In Jesus’ mighty name, Amen.

He could’ve but He didn’t


In many ways we are all fortunate to have a Savior Who loves each of us completely and without condemnation. He could’ve cast the first stone at the woman who was caught in adultery but He didn’t. He met the qualifications of having no sin to be the first to cast the stone at her, but He loved her. Every person that He met during His ministry from the disciples to those who were seeking food or a miracle really didn’t deserve His attention but they got it anyway. Why? Because He loved them and He loves us today, even though we don’t deserve His love.

God’s love for us is far more than we can understand in our limited way. Love started with God since He is the embodiment of love. So why do people either disbelieve in Him or choose not to give their heart to Him? My opinion of this is quite simple: they don’t believe and they don’t want to. Some people just can’t see that God’s offer of forgiveness and eternity is as simple as their heart-felt belief in Jesus and the atonement that He bought for us with His death, burial and resurrection. We don’t have to try to add our efforts, our “works of righteousness”, our help in saving our soul or trying to be good enough. We can’t measure up on our own and it is that simple.

Our self-righteousness is as dirty, filthy rags compared to being a forgiven true believer in Jesus and what He did to purchase our pardon from the penalty of our sins. There truly is nothing which we can do which will gain us entry into the gates of Heaven. God owns everything because He created it all, so He doesn’t need our money. We can’t give Him enough time or do enough in our own strength, even if we did it in the name of Jesus because if you are not known by the Savior then your work in His Name is false because He doesn’t know you.

In order to be truly and completely saved each of us has to know our Savior and be known by Him. If you have felt His call on your life, the conviction of your need for a Savior and the knowledge that only belief in Jesus and surrendering your life to Him will bring you the salvation that is only possible by knowing Him as your Savior then you have a decision to make. Give Him your heart and your life and repent of your sins, regardless of the perception of their size, because size doesn’t matter to God. A sin of murder is no more or less than the sin of lying or stealing in God’s eyes. When you break one of the Ten Commandments, even by your lust for a woman and no more, it is still a sin.

You can be forgiven through Jesus’ sacrifice for you and be adopted into God’s family. When Jesus was confronted in the picture above, He told the people who brought her to Him that the one without sin could cast the first stone at her for adultery. They all knew that not one of them could be considered “without sin”. He could’ve but He didn’t come to condemn people, not even one caught in the act of adultery. He came to heal and forgive and provide a way for forgiveness through belief in Him. Which is why He told her that He didn’t condemn her nor accuse her and He said, “Go and sin no more”. Could she live a sinless life even after that encounter? No, but with her belief in Him and the Holy Spirit’s help she could live her life as an example to those around her.

I pray that anyone who reads this will seek Jesus out as their Savior and Lord because the time is growing short for us in this sick world. Seek Him out while there is time.

When you are in a storm…


Remember that you, as a Christian, are related to the One Who created rain and wind and the seas. He commands the elements and the universe itself has to obey. There are some storms which come upon us unexpectedly and there are some which we helped to create, but God is with us in all of them. He is still in control regardless of the news or the numbers which you hear on TV or radio. Whether the storm is natural or caused by mankind, God is still in control and those who doubt this will one day find out for sure. Though one day it will be apparent that He is in control, they will still cry and complain about it until they find that it is too late to change.

The storm that you are in could be financial or just a problem with your health. It could be that you are worrying about your child or how you are going to pay some bills this month. A storm in your life can happen at any time and in an instant your life will change forever. What do you do then? If you don’t know Jesus as your Savior you can call on friends or family to help you but they could be going through their own storm. Jesus is the only Person Who can take care of spiritual problems and health problems and financial problems too. When you give your heart to Him and sincerely repent of your sinful life to follow Him, He will be with you through all of the storms.

Your family and friends won’t be so close during those times of joblessness and cancer diagnosis. They will be with you every day if you win the lottery but when the money is gone, they will be too. God loves you so much that He sent Jesus to take our sins and our burdens and our problems to the cross and nail them to it forever. All that you need to do is believe in Him as your Savior and Lord and your life will be forever changed. I’m not promising that all of your troubles will go away, sometimes they get worse because of your faith in Jesus, but He will provide for you in His time and in His way.

Love makes a difference


Sometimes I have heard people ask in a wondering tone, “Why did Jesus die for me?”. The simple answer is love. As John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him will have everlasting life.”

It is the love of God which restrains His wrath even now. It is the love of God which calls to those who will hear Him to come to know Jesus as your Savior and you will be forgiven. It is God’s love which keeps our lives and our world going and moving and being in this world where there are many who don’t want His love.

God sustained Adam and Eve perfectly for a time. He sustained them and their offspring even after they disobeyed His command about the Tree of Knowledge. God has sustained the universe and our little speck of a world since creation and He will do so until it is time to change things as it says in the book of Revelation.

Yes, love does make a difference. Whether it is God’s love for us or our love for Him and for each other, true love does make a huge difference. In our lives and the lives that we touch and in the work that we do every day, it is our love which makes a difference now and will make a difference to someone else who sees what we do or say. We won’t know about the effect that we have had on other’s lives until we meet them in Heaven one day.

A kind word, holding the door for someone, paying for their meal when they didn’t ask you to, thanking God for your meal when you go out to eat, all of these things are little things but God can use them in ways that we can’t imagine.

Love is powerful and it does so many wonderful things in the world and in our lives and in the lives of those around us. Love comes from God and perfect love is His to give freely to each of us every day. Make sure that you give some away to your family and to strangers alike because you never know the impact it could have in their life and in yours too.

Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound….


Amazing Grace! We have been given His Grace toward us and for us. Not because we deserve it, because we don’t. God gave us His Grace through Jesus Christ long, long ago because He loves us! Not because of what we can do for Him but because of what He wanted to do for us. He wanted us to be with Him in eternity to praise and honor Him with glory because we love Him for what He did for each of us while we were still sinners, even before we were born, even before the world itself was made…He loved us enough to come draped in human flesh so that He could reconcile our sins through His death on the cross and then redeem us through His resurrection so that we would be with Him in eternity.

How sweet the sound of the words in the song by John Newton. John Newton, who was the captain of a slave ship for a few years and all the while God was working in him and on him. One day, he gave his heart and soul to Jesus and it changed him so profoundly until he had to sit down and write one of the greatest hymns that the Christian world has ever known. Not because of the melody but because of the words and the meaning behind them. This song is a sermon of love…God’s love for us and our love for Him because He loved us first!

“That saved a wretch like me”; John Newton could hear the slaves singing spiritual songs in the hold of the ships that he was part of their crew before being made captain on another ship. It was those songs and the conviction which came by them that made him write the song that we still sing today. Because God loves us even as wretched sinners and He loved each of us enough that He sent Jesus, His Son, to die on a Roman cross in order for us to live in eternity with Him. He didn’t have to do this but He wanted to do it because it was the only way to pay our penalty totally and completely so that we could be reconciled to Him and by Him.

“I once was lost, but now I’m found. I was blind, but now I can see!” We were all lost. Struggling through this life as sinners and we didn’t know that we were dead already because of our sins. But when the Holy Spirit touched our hearts and broke them so that we could see with our spiritual eyes, we would see just how lost we truly were. Then we would know that we needed Jesus as our Savior and we would seek Him out until we found Him and asked Him to come in and clean our hearts and our minds so that we could be His.

“Through many dangers, toil and snares I have already come. His Grace has led me safe thus far and Grace will lead me Home”; In life we do go through toil and snares which Satan has put in front of us each day, but God’s grace and His Strength will guide you and me through these times and carry us home to Heaven one day. Seek Jesus out for your salvation so that you will be lead home to Heaven one day because He is the only pathway to Eternity. John Newton knew it, Billy Graham knew it, and the Bible tells us about it, all that we have to do is give our life to Him and walk with Him until that day comes when we will be taken home to be with Him.

Broken…


Are you broken?

Do you feel broken sometimes? 

We are very much like the pottery which God’s Word tells us about.

Isaiah 30: 14-15

14 It will break in pieces like a potter’s jar, shattered so that no fragment can be found. Not a shard will be found in the dust large enough to scoop the coals from a hearth or to skim the water from a cistern.”
15 For the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel has said: “By repentance and rest
you would be saved; your strength would lie in quiet confidence — but you were not willing.”

In Jeremiah 18

The Potter and the Clay
1 This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD: 2 “Go down at once to the potter’s house, and there I will reveal My message to you.”
3 So I went down to the potter’s house and saw him working at the wheel. 4 But the vessel that he was shaping from the clay became flawed in his hand; so he formed it into another vessel, as it seemed best for him to do.
5 Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 6“O house of Israel, can I not treat you as this potter treats his clay? declares the LORD. Just like the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel.

God can do, with us, as He pleases. He can do all things without our consent in our lives but the most useful we are to Him is when we are submitted to Him and are obeying Him. Can He break us in order for us to be more submitted to Him? Yes, He can. Will He do this? If He has to He will but I don’t think it is His preferred way of working with us.

God is not a tyrant in that He has to be mean to us in order to get us to do something. He would rather work with us in conjunction rather than having to allow things to happen in our lives which will force us to fall to our knees in submission to Him. So, does God break us sometimes in order to get our attention? I believe He does this sometimes, but it isn’t because He is mean, it is more likely because we are being stubborn and not listening to Him.

God loves His creation and He cares for each of us and He wants the best for us but during the time which we are feeling broken, we may not feel like He cares for us. Sometimes it is during those broken times when we feel down or depressed that we feel that the only way to go from there is up. We should be looking up and keeping our spiritual eyes on Jesus so that the time spent in those low places doesn’t last very long.

Make sure that you are centered in Jesus with Him as your Savior because the times in which we are living are unpredictable and we are not guaranteed tomorrow. So make sure of your eternity while you are here in the present because it is during this time is when we can respond when we are prompted by His Spirit.

The problem with worrying about those problems, whatever they might be, is that it makes us seem to be a practical atheist. We worry about things because we don’t think God will take care of it. The problem with that is this: He will take care of it only when we give the problem to Him completely! Not a portion of it for Him and then we will take care of the rest. Give the pain and sorrow to Him totally so that He can take it and do what He does with problems! He turns them into opportunities to show His glory for your good!

Many times in our lives, when we are going through heartache from the loss of a loved one or our job or anything which causes us to question God’s intentions, we should not question Him with a disrespectful spirit. We should, however, question Him as in “What is going on, Lord?” or “Why is this happening?”. God will allow us to ask a question of Him but not with an attitude of rebellion toward Him. We want to know why we are being broken and the answer could be that He wants to make us a little bit better than we were. Just as a potter may see something different after he begins work on a pot or a plate and he reforms it into something more useful or more appropriate. God is our potter and He can do exactly that as well.

Sometimes these changes come about from periods of hardship and personal pain and depending upon the amount of change that He wants to see in our life it could be considerable or it could be just a little discomfort. Worrying our way through these times can cause them to last longer because we are wanting to help God get us through them. But…He doesn’t need your help in changing you. Truth be told if you try to help Him change you the problem may last a lot longer than it would have if you had stayed out of it.

Knowing this, why do we worry? Because God doesn’t fix our problems when we want them fixed, He fixes them in His time and in His way. This is when the Scripture comes into play in our situation, “Be still and know that I am God”.

What would you give up?


To follow Jesus, the disciples all gave up something. Their livelihood, their reputation in some way, virtually all of them let something go in order to follow Jesus and they did so willingly.

A man from about 140 years ago once said this: “Beware of no one more than yourself, we carry our worst enemies within us.” Charles H. Spurgeon

Sometimes when we think we have given up a lot in order to follow Jesus and be useful to Him, we really haven’t given up much at all. On top of that, we are our own enemies because we can convince ourselves of things which we haven’t done or shouldn’t do even when God has called us to do these things.

So…what would you give up?

Would you go on a fast for a few days or maybe a couple of weeks, drinking only juice and water? I have done it myself but it was nine years ago, right before I was called to preach a few months later. I had to pray a lot but I was also working full time at a computer shop, so being away from home and food and cooking made it a little easier. Just work, drink water and go to the restroom a lot. Then after a week, it got easier and so on. I am not bragging about this because it truly was hard to do without all day and then come home and smell supper being cooked. I actually made it through about thirty days with juice and water and some protein drinks made with water (I know that last was kinda cheating). But after three weeks without solid food it is hard for your mind and your will to push back hard enough. The good thing about it, I lost thirty pounds!

Would you give up watching TV? I think this is even harder than fasting from food. I have heard of people who don’t even have a TV in their home and that’s great! I’m sure they don’t have computers or smartphones either. Although I could save a couple of hundred dollars a month cutting off the Internet and satellite TV. I don’t want to be without my phone though, just for emergencies.

What else could you and I give up? Snacks? Candy? Coffee…no, scratch that. Chocolate…can’t do it because it is in the same field as coffee.

Truthfully, we are our own enemies because we will listen to those voices which pop up in our mind. We think that they are our own ideas when they could be suggestions from Satan. The more we listen to them, the more influence they have over our lives. We can also talk ourselves out of doing things which we know God has called us to do. We become our own worst enemy because of this and sometimes we will even talk ourselves into doing something, thinking that it is the Holy Spirit talking to us.

If you don’t believe me just think back over your life and find those schemes or whatever you want to call them which didn’t work out so good. You heard about an “opportunity” or a “hot tip” and you thought “What will it hurt to give it a shot?”, “Who am I hurting but my own bank account?” I’ve done it, you know someone who has done it or you have done it and tried to forget about it. You mind and your thoughts are easy for Satan to manipulate because he’s been doing it for thousands of years. He knows where your buttons are and he know exactly how hard to push them so that it is tempting the first time and then it becomes a bit more and pretty soon…well you get the picture. It’s just like any of the temptations which he messes up other people’s lives and yours too, if you’re honest.

It is hard to push those ideas and temptations away when you are tired or hungry like Jesus was when He was tempted, but He used the Word of God against Satan and we have know it well enough to do the same thing. We will never know it though, unless we read it and study it every day, year after year. God’s Word is full of encouragement and heartache and wisdom and promises, but we need to know them so we can use them in our every day lives. Here is the challenge that I am putting here:

So…can you give up about fifteen minutes each day to read and pray about one chapter in God’s Word? Then do it again tomorrow and the next day until you’ve finished the New Testament. Then start on the Old Testament and do the same thing because after 21 days, reading God’s Word will have become a habit and it will be a habit that your heart and soul will truly miss when you miss one or two times.