Resting in God’s Presence


In our world today we live almost twenty-four hours on and get very little actual rest even when we do sleep. Many of us have trouble sleeping, as I do, and take medication to “help us along”. In reality and physically we are sabotaging our restful periods because our body feels that if we don’t take something to push us into sleep, then we won’t get much if any!

I am determined to give prayer and some exercise a try to NOT take anything to help me get to sleep or to stay asleep. We aren’t supposed to be dependent upon pills to sleep but today with all of the electronic screens around us, scientists have confirmed that we are responsible for our sleep being unrestful and infrequent. God never designed us for all of the technology which is available to us today. We are supposed to put them down and give our brains time to wind down at some point, but do we?

Many of us do not. Young and old have e-readers and phones and laptops and flat-screen TV’s either in our bedroom or near us all the time and the light from those screens has an effect on us that people in the past generation didn’t have to deal with. Just twenty years or so in the past, we didn’t have e-readers and cell phones with screens, we didn’t have laptops and tablets which we could play games on or read books on. Since all of these came out there are more prescriptions for sleep aids and more ways to help us sleep than there ever was before.

God loves each of us and gives us a certain amount of energy to get through our days work, then we are supposed to wind down and give our worries and our problems to Him and get some restful sleep. I pray that you will try to do this just as I will, and hopefully we can get some true and honest rest without medication. Amen?

What do you value?


black-friday-software-dealsIn society, no matter where that society is, it seems to be respect and a standing in the community that is valued most. In some areas of society it is wealth and power and prestige that is valued more. There are times that all of those combine into one abiding and driving force in a society regardless of which country it may be in–and that is called greed. During the holidays, it seems that we value things far above people because of how much value we place on “stuff”.

We see it in the news and online, we see the effects of it in life around us but greed is actually a part of an overpowering emotion that humanity has been dealing with and losing the battle against ever since the Garden. That is pride. Pride of course can be a good thing when you are proud of your son or daughter for their accomplishments in school or even in life. But…it can get out of hand when pride in yourself and your status and your wealth swells up to the point of making you want more and more.

Our values and what we value should be a part of our life with Christ. Our life in general should be a reflection of our values and Jesus being a part of our life should be the standard by which our values are measured. What does He value in His ministry? Who does He value and why? When we find the answers to these questions, and they aren’t hard to find, then we will have the answer to having a life which reflects more of Him and less of our pride, less of us.

Why should our values be aligned with Jesus’ values? Because if you are a Christian then your life and the values that you have should be reflecting the same life, the same values which Jesus placed value in. If you claim to be a Christian but you live like the rest of the world and only go to church when it is necessary or maybe on holidays, weddings and funerals, then you are missing the point.

The Christian life is about believing in Jesus but also living with Him on a daily basis, gathering for prayer and worship of your Creator with other believers and becoming more like Him and less like the person that you were before. If this doesn’t describe your life with Jesus, then you may want to do a bit of soul-searching to see if you really are a Christian.

I am not writing this to put anyone down, but there are many people in America and in other places, who claim to be Christians BUT they never go to church. It is likely that they rarely read the Bible or pray and praise God, unless something is going wrong in their life or in their family. Then they seek His help and influence. God is not on call just when something goes wrong, He is supposed to be present in your life…every day!

God is not a genie. We shouldn’t treat Him as such, but there are many who seem to look at Him like this. God values your life so much that He sent Jesus to die on the cross, one of the most heinous and barbaric ways that anyone could die, in order to be the sacrifice for your sins! He would’ve done this even if there was only you to save, but He paid the price for ALL of humanity. Even though many won’t give their lives to Him and become a Christian, the price has already been paid for their sins.

Learn of Him and His Love for you. Seek Him out while there is still time in this life to do so. When you have breathed your last breath or if death comes suddenly tonight or tomorrow, your chance to change is over. Don’t put it off, please.

Think on this…


Shoes in Church
I showered and shaved……………. I adjusted my tie.

I got there and sat……………. In a pew just in time.

Bowing my head in prayer………… As I closed my eyes.

I saw the shoe of the man next to me……. Touching my own. I sighed.

With plenty of room on either side……… I thought, ‘Why must our soles touch?’

It bothered me, his shoe touching mine.. But it didn’t bother him much.

A prayer began: ‘Our Father’…………. I thought,
‘This man with the shoes, has no pride. They’re dusty, worn, and scratched.
Even worse, there are holes on the side!’

‘Thank You for blessings,’ the prayer went on.

The shoe man said…………….. A quiet ‘Amen.’

I tried to focus on the prayer……. But my thoughts were on his shoes again..

Aren’t we supposed to look our best. When walking through that door?

‘Well, this certainly isn’t it,’ I thought, glancing toward the floor.

Then the prayer was ended………… And the songs of praise began .

The shoe man was certainly loud….. Sounding proud as he sang.

His voice lifted the rafters…….. His hands were raised high.

The Lord could surely hear.. The shoe man’s voice from the sky.

It was time for the offering…….. And what I threw in was steep.

I watched as the shoe man reached…. Into his pockets so deep.

I saw what was pulled out………. What the shoe man put in.

Then I heard a soft ‘clink’ as when silver hits tin.

The sermon really bored me………. To tears, and that’s no lie.

It was the same for the shoe man… For tears fell from his eyes.

At the end of the service…….. As is the custom here.

We must greet new visitors, And show them all good cheer.

But I felt moved somehow……….. And wanted to meet the shoe man.

So after the closing prayer…….. I reached over and shook his hand.

He was old and his skin was dark….. And his hair was truly a mess…..

But I thanked him for coming………. For being our guest…

He said, ‘My name’s Charlie………… I’m glad to meet you, my friend.’

There were tears in his eyes……… But he had a large, wide grin..

‘Let me explain,’ he said…………. Wiping tears from his eyes.

‘I’ve been coming here for months…… And you’re the first to say ‘Hi.”

‘I know that my appearance………..Is not like all the rest.

‘But I really do try………………..To always look my best.’

‘I always clean and polish my shoes…Before my very long walk.’

‘But by the time I get here……..They’re dirty and dusty, like chalk.’

My heart filled with pain………… And I swallowed to hide my tears.

As he continued to apologize………. For daring to sit so near

He said, ‘When I get here………… I know I must look a sight.’

‘But I thought if I could touch you….Then maybe our souls might unite.’

I was silent for a moment…………. Knowing whatever was said

Would pale in comparison…. I spoke from my heart, not my head.

‘Oh, you’ve touched me,’ I said…….’And taught me, in part’

‘That the best of any man…………..Is what is found in his heart.’

The rest, I thought,…………… This shoe man will never know.

Like just how thankful I really am…. That his dirty old shoe touched my soul

Live each day as your last, for we never know our time here on earth. Love and Peace My Friends and remember that it is not how we look on the outside but how we look within .

I saw this on Facebook and just wanted to share it with you.

Walls and obstacles


Many times in your life, whether you are a Christian or not, you will come up against walls. Some of them are built by pain, some of them are built by envy or jealousy, some of them are built by a disease which causes you pain in a very deep emotional way. We all have to scale these walls and barriers at some point, some of them are hard to climb because they are so big, but they can be torn down.

Oh, we can’t do this by ourselves though, regardless of what counselors and some doctors may tell you. Walls, whether built by emotions, disease, death, jealousy, racism, or hatred, can only be broken down by God’s work in your heart and in your life. Day by day, walking with Him and seeking His wisdom and strength by which we can take the walls down brick by brick is the only way.

BreakingDownWallsIt is not a quick process and it isn’t easy either, especially when you have been able to take care of yourself in other situations in your life. What makes this so difficult or any different? It’s because of what the walls and barriers are made from. The ones which are so difficult are made from emotions like fear, anger, resentment, racism, hate, envy and greed. There are others, but you get the point. These walls keep out those who care about you, whether it is God or friends and family!

Each of us feels the effect of these barriers in some way or another, sometimes the effect on us is that which causes a disease or pain. Emotions can do this and the ones which hurt the most usually do the most damage. It may take a little time before you feel the effects of it, but until it is resolved in some way, it will only get worse over time. In particular, anger and hatred which are unresolved or unforgiven will give you ulcers and possibly high blood pressure and they will make other conditions worse. Do the research yourself if you don’t believe me, but I am not pulling your leg.

Barriers and walls made from emotional bricks can cause more hurt and pain than many people realize. It doesn’t have to be anger or hatred which cause these walls, it can be envy, or any of a number of other emotions which I named earlier. All of them get in the way of relationships, especially your relationship with God. Seek His help in resolving these walls, breaking them down to the point where you can still have a relationship with Him daily. He can do it but He wants to do it with you!

I had these problems for a very long time, and at times they still pop up and blur my “spiritual vision” in a way. I usually sit down and talk with God about it as soon as I realize what is happening, and it soon resolves itself or God helps me to resolve it. Give it a try, ask God to help you because He is bigger than any problem or wall that may be in your life and He can help you bring it down.

Dull and lifeless


I have often wondered if that is how much of the world sees people in the church or even the church itself? We as Christians claim that we have something that others may want, the good news of salvation through Jesus Christ. The problem arises when those who are outside the church look at our lives or even the church itself and see a very dull and lifeless (read boring) experience!

Why would they want that? Even though it is true that most people, when they come to a place in life that they can’t handle themselves, seek out a Higher Power. Sometimes this brings them to God and sometimes they will encounter Satan or one of his followers who are disguising themselves as angels. At this point in their life many just latch onto whichever one will help them at the time and right now! Which causes many to go down a road or path, which is takes them in the wrong direction. They may not find out about this until it is too late to turn back and therein lies the problem.

In many ways, people are fooled not because Satan is such a good liar but because the church and its representation of God and salvation doesn’t look much different or appealing. This is something which must change! Because we are supposed to be taking God’s message of salvation to the WHOLE world! If our message and the gospel of Jesus doesn’t seem to be appealing to others, we should seek out the answer to this question: “Why do people seem to be put off or turned away from the church and God?

It is not an easy answer to find actually. Yet, according to the Bible which is the inspired Word of God, evil is vanquished in the end. Death, sin, evil, lawlessness and all of the negative emotions and behaviors in this world will all go away, in God’s time and at the end of this world. The problem today is this: Most or at least many people don’t believe it. The Bible is just an old book with no bearing on life today. It is out-dated and old, quaint would be a good term for it, but it has no meaning for us in the 21st century.

I have a different opinion about that. The differences between all people in this world stem from just a few things which get completely blown out of proportion. First is our notion of “race”, we are all part of the human race! The only differences are our skin tone and our cultures, whether in a city environment or taken as a nationwide culture, these are really the most troublesome parts of being human. Second is our choice of religion and that gets pretty weird when you look at all of the different religions in the world, even though there are three main religions, there are thousands of creeds, beliefs, doctrines etc.

These two differences along with the other smaller or larger (depending upon your viewpoint) pieces and parts which are scattered all over the world, are the very reasons for all of the wars and riots and shootings that occur on a regular basis, day in and day out. The only unifying force will be the coming of Jesus to set up His Kingdom on Earth and there will be many more deaths around the world before that day gets here.

Differences should be celebrated in our world, not part of the problem. Your skin may be more brown than mine and I embrace that because God made you different in that way. Your culture or rather, the ways that you learned from your parents and grandparents, while growing up are different, I accept that as well. It is not something which should be looked down on, nor is it something to place on a pedestal and tell others that yours is best! We are all human, regardless of skin color or our cultural beliefs in God or some other deity. These differences should be embraced in a collective way, not a national or cultural way.

God created us all to be different because we can have a different place and a different part in His Kingdom. You can accomplish things which I cannot and I may be able to do some things which you cannot. It is the same with each of our bodies, the kidneys work to cleanse the blood of sugar and salts, to make this simple. Your liver cleanses the blood of other impurities, but a body which has neither of these organs cannot survive. God is our Creator and must be worshiped as such. He is also our Redeemer, if we will accept Him into that role in our lives. All of the other “gods” or non-religions have no real power and cannot grant you one day or the hair on your head. Seek out God in His Word and you will find that He is all that is really necessary for your life.

Well, we are here…


So, what do we do now? God places rulers, governors, Senators and Presidents in their positions in order for His will to be done. One way or another. Just as God used Pharaoh when the Israelites were slaves, He will use our leaders, our President to make His will for us known. We may not realize it, we may not even want to acknowledge God is the One, the only One Who is truly in control of our world.

God said in the Bible, where Paul wrote in Romans 9:17:
“For the Scripture says to Pharaoh: “I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display My power in you, and that My name might be proclaimed in all the earth.”

This is what I believe that God is doing here in America today, and not just here but all over the world! The people who are showing up like the Neo-Nazi’s, the white supremacists, many of those who are “taking advantage” of the unrest and uncertainty in our country are just adding to the problems before a solution can be figured out for anything! Most of the voters who actually voted for Donald Trump are not like them nor do we belong to the organizations which are claiming that we do.

God is bringing all of this to a tipping point and one day this will tip over and we will be involved in some real problems, not just these small problems which everyone seems to be whining about. It will not be something that everyone will be joyful about and very few will enjoy it at all, but God is still in control. Some of you who read this may want to ask, “Why is this happening now?”; that is a good question but why didn’t it happen thirty years ago? Why didn’t some of this happen sixty years ago?

Because we, as a people and as the only race on this planet able to think about things like this, are in a position to read and know that where we are in prophecy means that we don’t have many more years before there is a worldwide realization that God truly is in control.Why do I say this? Because when so many people disappear, worldwide at the same time, some will know what it means but many people won’t get it and that is our mission now! To make sure that they don’t have to find someone to tell them what is going on!

Just because we have a President elect who has used the fears and rhetoric that he did in order to get elected, doesn’t mean that he is like those who are wearing the T-shirts with his name on them! You know, I didn’t vote for the President that we have had for the past eight years, but I have prayed for his salvation and for God to give him the wisdom to do his job. I didn’t go into the streets and burn cars and break windows and such because I didn’t want him. God says that we should serve under those who are put above us in government because He is the One Who placed them there!

So much…so fast…


What can we do? It seems that life, daily and around the world, is moving too fast. We start a new year and then six months have gone by, almost in a flash. News, shootings, wars, politicians vying for your vote and trying to tear their opponent down. Why is all of this going by the way that it is? Is it because we are getting older or is the world around us speeding up? Maybe the ruler of this world is causing everything to happen in such a way that we see it happening and it is just too much to grasp.

I think it is because of all the information channels which we have at our fingertips. We have Facebook, we have the Internet and all of it’s news sites, we have cell phones which can get online anywhere at anytime, and we still have the news and news papers. Although to us in this day and age, the television and the newspaper are out of date the minute they print a story or when it is broadcast.

At the beginning of the 20th century life moved a lot slower than it does now. In 1916, the world was involved in World War 1, the Ford Motor Company had made cars available as long as you didn’t mind it being in black, a few people had an early version of the telephone. For the most part, people still traveled by horse and buggy and most people were farmers or ranch hands if you lived out West. There were still a few territories which had not even become states yet. It had only been fifty years or so since the Civil War had ended.

Now we are only one century from that point and where are we? Everyone seems to be doing their own thing, regardless of whether it is the right thing or not. Cell phones with cameras are in everyone’s hands today, so nothing is private anymore. You can be recorded doing anything, anywhere at any time. There are very few farmers anymore, food is produced by corporations and shipped in from all over the world, except for a few local markets. We have been through at least four wars since the first world war and the second was worse.

We have had much strife and endless society problems since the “new century” began, but have we managed to do anything constructive in the last fifteen years? Not really.

I have seen over five decades of life and yet that is just the beginning of life for many. Over that time, there have been many problems in society, in our country yet when you consider all of the promises that have been made by various politicians…nothing has really changed for the better. Why are we still dealing with so much racism and hatred? Is it because of true racial problems or are they magnified by those who wish to keep us at each other’s throats? I believe it is just that!

We have taken God’s Word from education and that is against God’s ways, because He said that we should train our children by His Word. We have taken prayer out of schools and the pledge of allegiance too, all in the name of “political correctness”. Just so others, even if it is only one person, are not offended in some way. All of this political correctness began early in the last century but it really gained traction in the ’60’s and has become like a chain on every part of life today.

The only way to get our country back on the right track is for there to be a national revival. Come back to God’s house and learn from Him what is required, what is needed. God loves each of us, yet we have pushed Him away to the point of receiving judgement from Him and it seems very likely that we will get just that.

Turn ye back to the Lord! God has not given up on us, yet we have walked away from Him. He changes not, but we have moved away from Him and we, as a nation, seem to think that we can make all things be right on our own. We NEED God! I pray that anyone who reads this will repent from their sinful ways and return to Him before it is too late.

Amen.

Daily problems and an eternal cure


Yesterday was my son’s birthday and we were supposed to go out to eat. He and his mother did, I had sinus problems which caused me to get sick enough to puke and had to stay at home. Ruined my day in some ways, but we had pizza and birthday cake (chocolate) with ice cream for dessert so all around, a pretty good save!

Life goes on regardless of your health problems, good or bad, we all have them. God is there to give you peace and comfort and to strengthen you at those times when you truly need it. My day, yesterday, began in a weird way anyhow. Dreams which were so vivid I felt I could touch them, but I didn’t want to because of the nature of them. It was as if Satan was showing me a video of what is going to be in outer darkness and the parts of hell where the fire is not!

I was, at least, able to call out to God and get out of that situation, but the nausea remained and grew worse. Why am I speaking of my day in this way, particularly here? Because, I need for you to know that I have days like this. I may be a pastor of a small church and a blogging pastor too but my days are not always “on top of the mountain” days. I do have fits and sputters of days and days where I fall entirely into the valley where the demons live. Yet…God carries me through all of those unsavory places with His Strength and His peace.

Is life perfect? Of course not…at least not yet. It will come as close as possible when Jesus begins His rule on Earth for one thousand years and then when the new Heaven and Earth come it will be perfectly wonderful beyond anyone’s wildest imagination! I can’t give you much of a description because of a limited imagination and the fact that there are no detailed descriptions of our future home. John tries to do it and some other writers attempt to give you a description of it, but from what some reported visitations have said in movies and books, the colors and textures of Heaven just don’t translate well into ordinary language.

Our minds can’t put into words the views and the texture of it and then you have to think of the clarity and the smell of Heaven, it would be like I have written before “like trying to describe blue or red to someone who was blind from birth”! They don’t have a concept of the color and if they haven’t seen it before then a description falls far short of what it is! It is the same with any description of Heaven, those of us on Earth have never experienced a perfect world, one which has deeper, richer colors and textures and even smells than we can experience here.

Life here is limited to our place…where we live, what we are exposed to and our ability to understand all that God has placed in our life. We can’t understand how a person living in Mongolia or the Congo or India lives because “we haven’t walked in their shoes or their sandals”. Even in America, there are many different cities and problems within those cities where we can’t understand the reason for the violence and other problems because unless you live there, you CAN’T know anything about it!

The best part of being a Christian is that we can live here expecting Jesus to come and we will have a home there too. Why bring this up today? Because, we all have problems and there are bad things happening in this world every day but…God is in control and He knows what is happening and why. Could He stop many of the things which are happening? Yes, but what would we learn from life if an angel came to our rescue every time? What would we learn about life and living if we looked for God to give us everything and we didn’t have to do anything for it?

We would be treating Him like many people look to the government today, waiting for their stamps and their money to be put on the card again. There is no need to try to get a job or go to school because the government will take care of all your needs.

Having faith in God to take care of your needs is not the same as Him providing everything for your daily life. He does want us to depend on Him, but if you aren’t willing to live your life as if you are His child then why should He? God loves you so much that His Son took on human flesh to live among us and then die for our sins so that we can belong to His family! If you can’t be bothered with living the way He wants you to, then He might just let your life be like you are living it rather than the way it could be.

Judgement, where does it start?


Many times in God’s Word, the judgement began at the door of the Temple and went from there. Today, I believe that the church, all churches, needs to examine its doctrine and its practices to make sure that they line up with God’s Word. If any part of our service, our doctrine or our lives inside or outside of the church doesn’t line up with His Word, then revival and repentance is sorely needed!

Sometimes you hear people in the media saying that the church is too this or that or they are judging us, by what right can they do that? If we use God’s Word as our True example and don’t add any of our human frailties and feelings into it, then our witness is true. If we are using rules and regulations that “the church founders wrote”, then we are way out of line!

We cannot be salt and light for the world if we, as a church, have lost the flavor imparted to us and our lives by the Holy Spirit. Our lives have to reflect the message and the life of Jesus, as much as possible, otherwise we don’t look any different from any other “religion”. Jesus gave His disciples and the church a mandate of going and making disciples of all nations. It wasn’t a suggestion or a talking point, it was and is a command from our Lord and it shouldn’t be ignored regardless of the opinion of those outside the church.

Why do I say this so forcefully? Because, we are supposed to be telling people about Jesus and His love for them. We are not supposed to be “like everyone else”, we are representing the Body of Christ here on Earth. Taking His message to those who may not hear it, taking God’s Word to those who can’t afford or get a copy, bringing food and clothes to those in need, teaching them about Jesus by being like Him so that they want to know Him. That is what His church is supposed to be doing. Not meeting in huge auditoriums and cheering to a sermon which says nothing about any of this!

God loves all of humanity but there will come a point when He draws back and lets us go our own way, to the ruin of whichever country that may be. I pray that is not happening to America, but from the news and the stories that have been told in the past decade, it just may be. Please pray with me that we are not at this point. We are at the point of truly needing God’s strength and His mercy but if we don’t repent of our sins and our weak religious ways then we may experience His judgement instead.

Happy Birthday, America!


usa-american-flag-gif-3

I know this is supposed to be a site where you learn more about God and your salvation but the birthday of America wouldn’t have happened if it hadn’t been for people of faith.

Our land has been around for 240 years, or at least that is how long it has been since our Declaration of Independence was put forth. Life around our land would be very different if it weren’t for the influence of Christian leaders and the beliefs of those who started our land on its way to becoming the greatest nation in the world. It is true that some people don’t think that of her anymore, even some people who live here and are benefiting from her generosity.

America has been a light for people to turn to when they need to find their way and it has been a place of refuge for many people as well. It is true that in the past some really terrible and horrible mistakes have been made regarding the treatment of Indians and Africans who were brought here to be slaves. These things shouldn’t have happened, but they did and the worst part is that we either have swept what happened under a rug and out of  the history books or we just ignore what happened altogether.

The biggest problem that we have today is that just when we think that we may have crossed the line toward better relations between the “races”, something happens that is done by one person with an off-kilter way of looking at life and here we go again.

Then you see the old hatred and bitterness come boiling up and we are at the same point in our nation as we were when there were race riots and clashes with the police on television every night. It tends to confuse the kids who have grown up without it and many of them wonder “Why?”

Why do we have to rewind an old tape that was worn out years ago?

Yes, there were many atrocities committed during those times and before then, but can’t we stop dragging the past into the present? Make a new day and a new way of getting along with one another! Stop looking at their skin color or their music and just listen to each other for once. Begin to TALK to one another, not texting but talking! Put the phones down and sit down and talk! Turn the TV off and talk to your kids or grand kids about the past but also about the future…their future!

Don’t repaint their future with the brush that you used when you were their age! Help them find a better one, one that is positive about what may happen in the future and not drag the negative parts of history in to cover up the progress that has been made!

America can be great again, if we as Americans will stand up and take our country back and MAKE it better! Shuffling money around from the rich to the poor won’t do anything but cause more problems. Fixing the things which are wrong is going to take more than a new President or a new set of laws or regulations. It is going to take Americans getting together and working toward fixing the problems one at a time!