Monday, June 8, 2020

For Us Or Against Us

Our world is tearing itself apart and we need help. Thankfully there is help to be had.

There are riots happening globally with anger and frustration fuelling the rage of people trying desperately to make a way forward.

At least I like to think that the motivation is to make a way forward but I am thoughtful that we won’t achieve this goal unless we adopt a new way of thinking and living.

Martin Luther King Jr. was approaching this when he said that that darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that, and truth be told, the light we need is the light of Jesus.  But to live in His light is not to simply add Him to our regular way of doing things.  No.  Living in the light of Jesus means learning to live in an entirely foreign way to what we are seeing take place globally.

As well meaning as it seems that one Race oppose another Race to overcome injustice, it betrays what the Light of heaven desires.  And that is not to say that that means that God doesn’t want people to stand for justice.  It just means that His way of doing justice requires that we adopt a whole new set of rules.

So what might that look like?

In the book of Joshua we read that God had brought His people to the city of Jericho to accomplish His plan of settling His people in a land inhabited by people who opposed God.  It would have been easy for Joshua, the leader of God’s people, to assume that God was going to be on their side as the fighting ensued.

That would make logical sense right?  If God led you to fight against another people group then obviously He is on your side!

But let’s see what actually happens...

“Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?”
“Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the LORD I have now come.” Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence...” (Joshua 5:13-14)

Joshua quickly learned that God was not on his side, God was on a side entirely His own!

God was not approaching this battle from the perspective of one people pitted against another people.  He was accomplishing His own mandate for His own purposes. And Joshua’s response is telling as this revelation unfolded.

It says that he knelt in reverent fear.  He didn’t redouble his efforts to overcome another people group that stood in opposition to him.  He paused and acknowledged Sovereign God.

Only light can cast out darkness, and Jesus is that Light that our world so desperately needs.

It’s time that we stop encouraging any race from fighting against another race.  And it’s time that we stop assuming that God is on our side.  God does not see “sides” like we do, He sees His good and righteous mandate of freedom and liberation for all human beings made in His image accomplished through His Son Jesus Christ.

God does not need us to fight His battles for Him.  What He desires is that we would pause, take a knee, not in solidarity with a particular color of people, but in reverent fear and respect for the King of Kings.

This is how we fight our battles.


When we do this, the walls that divide us don’t stand a chance.


Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Flesh and Blood

We are living in times when deep-seated division between people is fracturing our world.  Political leaders of parties are doing their best to lead but within a new populist reality that causes so many to justify the vilification of other leaders in the pursuit of political gain.  Where are the ones who have, in the past, pursued governing based on principles instead of image?

We have divisions that are driving wedges between races and this, again, raises its head publicly with the tragic death of George Floyd.  And the public outcry?  It is a race issue, because that is what is seen, it is one color that is pitted against the other.  And as long as the 'answer' is for one race to overcome the injustice by overcoming the other race, there will never be peace.

Racism has two sides:  one is the oppressor that perpetrates acts of injustice against another race, and two is the victim that tries to overcome racism by opposing and ultimately overcoming the oppressing race.  The problem is this:  both efforts drink from the well of racism, even though it feels intuitively right for the victim to oppose the oppressor.  Ultimately this whole thing reeks of the toxic quicksand of racism that drags every single person down with it.

Here is a snapshot of the futility of trying to overcome racism with even a well-meaning opposing racism. . .Recently many white people have been trying to align with and fight for black oppressed people.  But many black people are fighting against those white people who are trying to be their allies.  Why?  Because it is a matter of race, and it just seems so hypocritical to allow the visibly opposing race to come alongside.

There is no winning the battle of race because that is the rules of this game. . .there will never be any true answers or peace, until people begin to realize that the rules of this game of injustice are designed to accomplish exactly what we are seeing:  hatred and division.

Here is the question that those who call Jesus Christ Lord and Saviour must wrestle with:  Do we believe that He is able to provide a way that brings peace?  Does He really have what it takes to stand in the middle of a race fueled riot and have something very relevant to say?  Do we as His children have what it takes to realize that He is trying to teach us an entirely different set of rules that do not allow race to be the central issue at all?

We need strength and power to overcome this hatred, hopelessness and injustice but it will never come through our current ways of thinking, speaking and acting. It will only come through Jesus.

Ephesians 6:10 says:  ". . .be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power."  Ok, so let's take that seriously for our broken times.  Does He really mean that?  And what does that look like?

It says that we are to "take our stand against the devil's schemes."  Alright.  When I look at the hatred and chaos taking place it is clear to me that though the issue is being played out visibly by people with different colors, the way forward will never be found by simply trying to do harder the things we are doing now.  It only creates more chaos.  So let's finally recognize the wisdom of identifying that the deep division in our society originates from Satan. . it is his schemes at work here.  And let's take that seriously.

So how do we do that exactly?

By refusing to align with the current 'wisdom' of one race being pitted against the other either as the offending party or as the answer to overcome the offense.  All are victims in this charade and it is time that the Children of God stood and begin to proclaim what the real answer is: we begin by realizing that "our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil." Ephesians 6:12.

I refuse to align myself with any Facebook, Twitter or any digital proclamation that ascribes to an answer that suggests or blatantly pits one race against or over another.  It is all part of the same racist rules of that game.  I won't play by those rules anymore because God Himself tells me that those rules do not line up with eternal wisdom and will ultimately prove ineffective to find peace.

Instead, I am choosing to fight the real battle which is the Enemy, and the only way to overcome him is by the blood of the Lamb and word of my testimony that proclaims Jesus as our only hope.

Sounds good maybe, but how do we practically do that?  It starts by me saying 'no' to joining any movement that pits race against race.  When injustice is done, like to George Floyd, then I will not say that the answer is to bring one race 'down to size', but instead will be to point to Jesus and say, "I will fight injustice done to any person or race based on the fact that that person bears the image of God Himself and He desires that each one be given their appropriate dignity and safety."  Then I will invite any and all who hear me to come to the foot of the cross where we can find true and lasting peace.  And before anyone gives in to a sense that this way of approaching this war is futile, ineffective, naive, disconnected from reality, unwise, or misguided to the real issue, then I ask you, as a follower of Jesus Christ, what does being strong in the Lord mean?  What does it really mean when He tells me that doing so will mean that I am 'standing' against evil schemes?

Just how much do we believe that Jesus is the powerful One who designed human life and that He just might have the answers we desperately need for the very real issues that are taking lives right before our eyes?

I for one, am beginning to believe Him.  And that's why I will no longer lend my weight to any movement that tries to depict the answer to overcoming division between people as anything other than the One who designed it in the first place.

It is for the children of God to follow Jesus right into the center of any injustice; race, political or otherwise, and to express the obstinate love of God to all.  We will decide to stand with any who are hurting or broken; to any who have experienced the brutality of hatred and suffering, but I will not put 'race' on it anymore. I will call it for what it really is:  it is the evil scheme of a spiritual enemy that requires the spiritual victory of Jesus to overcome it.  I will stand amidst any who are hurt or who doing the hurting and will point all to Jesus, because it is in Him that we will find true liberation, freedom and peace.

This may sound like the most naive thing to do, because it will ring empty to most everyone that hears it.  Especially when it comes time to stand publicly and make this same proclamation to every ear.  But it has never been any different and the times are pressing us. . .how will you respond?

The more complex and hopeless the world gets, the more we need the simplest and most profound Answer ever given to humanity. . .and His name is Jesus.


Friday, May 15, 2020

Not Who You Are But Whose You Are

Do you really know your own identity?  This question is so deeply influenced by our individualistic and 'me' centered culture that it is almost impossible to imagine that this question doesn't even begin with me at all.

To know who you really are is to ask the question:  'Who do you belong to?'

In this Covid 19 era we may be discovering just how deeply we need relational interaction.  To not just hear a voice or face but to actually be in the presence of others.  It is wired in each one of us.  And this is evidence of something so much bigger that it's easy to miss because it covers our whole horizon and that is this: 

If you really want to know who you are, then it is matter of whose you are.

We all have been made in the image of God.  We bear His stamp upon us.  But there is a deeper truth that has the power to truly lift our souls when we realize and experience the fact that God has made us His own, which is a reflection of His desire.

To those who have said 'yes' to Jesus as their Saviour, you have been ushered into a relationship with the One who created you, knows you, embraces you, teaches you, plays with you, walks with you, leads you, watches over you, commits to you, and all out of a love that can never fade.

Your identity is that you belong and are loved. . .

Maybe you are feeling unloved and unlovable.  Maybe you sense that your stains have grown to the point that you can't help but feel their seemingly inevitable weight.  Maybe you are floundering in a pool of self-condemnation, and you are convinced that your primary identity is broken and maybe even ugly.

Jesus says something very different to you today.

Hebrews 2:11 says: "Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family.  So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters."

With Jesus, you belong, and you belong because of love.

Would you take a minute to let that sink today?  God's love is greater than your greatest sin or fault or shortcoming or habit that weighs you down.  Let His love lift you out of that pit and the sun will shine much brighter on you today.

Who are you?  No.  Whose are you. . .and that changes everything.


Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Mind The Gap

Ever felt that sense of disengagement that seems to sap your strength and stamina hindering you from feeling free to pursue more in your relationships, your work, and even in your own mind and heart?  It’s a general sense of feeling distant from the things that you know are better but just have a hard time stepping into. . .

On a small scale it’s when you know you shouldn’t buy that bag of chips and dip and binge watch the latest Netflix series, but you just don’t seem to have the necessary will to go and treadmill instead.  Or on a bigger scale, it’s when you know that you shouldn’t speak that harsh word to your son or daughter because it won’t help anyone in the long run, but that sense of disengagement causes you to express your frustration instead of moving into something far more productive and nurturing. 

Disengagement from better, more wholesome, productive and life-giving things. . .we all experience it, and we all sometimes feel helpless to avoid it.

Brene Brown, a sociologist and cultural observer suggests this important idea to help us to overcome this ‘gap’ between what we often feel/do and what we should feel/do.  She says this: “We can’t give people what we don’t have.  Who we are matters immeasurably more than what we know or who we want to be.”  (Daring Greatly, page 176)

Who we are matters the most.  Not what we have learned or what we think we know, but who we are.

And who we are is so much more than just the name we have, and the accomplishments or influence we exert.  Who we are goes right down to the essence of what makes me, me.

Maybe the most important aspect of discovering who we are is found in those who have the capacity to create who we are.  How long do you think that list is?  In my mind it stops right around. . .1.  God made each of us.  He desires that each of us find ourselves in our true identity, and that true identity is in relationship with Him.

And so Jesus makes a way back into real life. 

When you admit that to Jesus, that you want more out of life that you can’t get on your own, then you begin to open the possibility of living engaged!

It says in Romans 8:39 that nothing can separate a person from the love of God.  That is His fundamental attitude toward you and I.  But, our experience of that love is hindered by the fact that we have disengaged from Him. 

If you want to overcome that sense of disengagement in your life, then maybe it’s time to consider engaging with Jesus and letting His love transform you into everything you were designed to be!

Many blessings on you on your journey.


Wednesday, April 29, 2020


Ever wrestled with identity?

Have you asked yourself 'who am I really?'

I think it's a question that everyone has had to work through, and maybe numerous times, and maybe even on an ongoing manner.  And it can become quite a depressing journey, especially if you see your shortcomings and can't seem to change your habits.

I titled this little message 'pseudonym' because it has something to say about our identity.  A pseudonym is a name that a person picks for themselves that isn't their real name.  Authors are often times the ones that use this for a variety of reasons. For example, in the early 20th century, female authors would sometimes choose a male name in order for their books to gain a wider readership.  Their writing was their own, truly from them, but their public identity was not really who they were.

If you are a follower of Jesus then you need to hear this because you might be struggling to know who you really are.  You have a public life. . the life that includes your choices, your habits, your vocation, your accomplishments and your failures.  All the things that go into what you present to the world. . .in your mind, this is really YOU.  But that isn't really who you ARE. 

You see, what you do is not the foundation of who you are.  Why?  Because Jesus has changed all that.

Galatians 2:20 says: "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.  The life I now live in my body, I live by faith in the Son of God. . ."

When you allowed Jesus to forgive your sins He did that but so much more.  He also made you someone entirely different.  When scripture says that you are made as a new creation in Christ, it is meant to be taken literally and seriously.

So what should you take from this that would be helpful today?

Maybe just this one thing:  Your fundamental identity in Jesus is not based on your choices, your habits, your desires, your life-path, your win/loss column, your successes/failures, your public standing/stumbling, your healthy self-image or your self-loathing.  These things are the sum total of your pseudonym life.  Your real identity is now Jesus.  Note I didn't say that your life is now found in
Jesus, but your life is Jesus.  His identity is now your identity.

Jesus is stable, righteous, dependable, able to walk the path of true life, discerns and judges everything in the right way that makes room for good and goodness.  He is everything right and just and loving.  And His identity is now your identity.

Just let that sink in for you. . .your fundamental identity is no longer based on all those things that you feel you have to present to the world around you, but is instead established in the One Who is entirely good and desires for you to live in that goodness.

What a feeling.

I hope that today you see and experience the freedom of coming out from behind your pseudonym life and embrace your true identity in Christ.  When you do, you will live freedom like never before!


Saturday, April 18, 2020


Have you ever felt compelled to do something?

I’m talking about the every-bone-in-my-body-is-screaming-to-do-this kind of compelled?

I don’t think this happens very often in life but I do remember a time when I felt like this.

It was 1988, the Oilers were winning, the Roughriders were losing (we didn’t expect to win the next year against the juggernaut Eskimos.  Gotta have faith!), and I was in love.  This gorgeous little Norwegian had stolen my heart and I was at the point that I knew, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that I simply MUST propose to her.  My love for her went so deep that I truly didn’t feel I had a choice.  Why?

Because I was compelled.

It’s an otherworldly sensation when you feel you must do something and there is not even a shred of doubt in you.  Mountains move, and you feel that if a mountain got in your way it wouldn’t stand a chance.

The Apostles Peter and John felt like this in their relationship with Jesus.  They were so captivated that their view of life reduced down to this one thing; their love and gratitude toward Jesus had filled them so utterly and completely that no matter the consequences or threat to their life they simply HAD to tell the world about him.

Standing before those who had the power to snuff out their life if they continued to speak about Jesus publicly they said this: “As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen or heard.”
(Acts 4:20)

Those two were compelled by the love of heaven that made their decision to follow Jesus regardless of circumstance a no-brainer!

I want to say two things to you: Jesus was compelled by his love for you to sacrifice himself for your freedom.  And second: He is still moving heaven and earth in order for you to experience his compelling love!

If you let that sink in for moment you may feel some of those mountains weighing you down start to shift....

Freedom. Love. No doubts.  Sounds compelling.

Saturday, April 11, 2020


 I came across this quote the other day that speaks to what it means to simplify:

"The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak."

I think these words describe exactly what is going on for us in these strange and tumultuous days.
We are being forced to simplify.  Our lives are being changed through reduction that is leading to simplification.  It can really hurt but it can also be a thing of incredible liberation.


Because we are being offered an unprecedented opportunity to hear the necessary as all the unnecessary is taken away. 

Just look at the picture above. . .do you see the still calm water?  Do you see how there isn't even a ripple, and how the boats are serenely floating in that stillness?

I chose this image intentionally because it represents how our souls can become calm in this time when our lives are being simplified.  And instead of fighting it, I want to encourage you to embrace it.

Just listen to the heart of God reaching out to you today in Psalm 23:1-3 "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.  He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul."

When I think about how life is being simplified for me; about how attractive still waters in my soul sounds; about how my Lord Jesus is actively leading me to sit down with Him in this simple and quiet place with Him, I can begin to feel my soul being restored. . .and it is so very good.

Today the Lord is inviting you to sit with him beside the waters that He has stilled just for you, so you could freely enjoy His voice that is speaking the most necessary words you need to hear:  "I love you.  I've got you.  Enjoy your soul being restored with Me here, right now."

My prayer for you is that you will be filled with peace that literally passes all of your ability to understand.



Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Wholehearted (The Last One. . .)

It takes great courage to let someone see your heart, and to pursue someone else's.
It takes immense compassion to allow another person's heart to find a home in yours.
It takes intense desire to pursue connection with others when it can seem like connection hurts.

My mom was a woman that lived with the courage to love me even when I didn't deserve it.  She modeled compassion toward me when I was hurting and didn't feel like I had many options.  And she did this through the best way imaginable:  hugs.  She always had a hug ready for me and it always made a difference.

My mom was a wholehearted person, and I was supremely blessed by her because of it.

I'm not sure I'm living up to my mom's standard of wholeheartedness, but I do know that I strive to live that way.  And I am confident that this is a good life goal because I know firsthand how it brings hope and healing for others.

Maybe you have someone in your life that lived wholeheartedly and loved you with courage, compassion and connection.  If you do, take some time to thank them for this immense gift.

Or maybe you haven't experienced this and desire to but it seems absolutely impossible. Well, I want to let you in on a little secret:  my mom could only do this because someone did it for her, and that someone was Jesus.

Jesus is the ultimate example of wholehearted living.  And He promises to reach into our lives with the kind of love that brings the blessing of courage, compassion and connection as no one else can.

So I pray for you today:  "Jesus, I ask that you reach into the life of that one who is reading this right now and begin to pour out your courageous, compassionate and connecting love.  May it overwhelm them and show them just how much you they mean to you.  Jesus, lift them out of despair or frustration or loneliness and fill them with your presence.  Draw them close to you I pray. Amen."

We are in this together friend. . .

Saturday, April 4, 2020

Wholehearted (The second one. . .)

A wise and venerable saying contains some treasures for you and I:  "You can't love others unless you love yourself."

Brene Brown has studied thousands of people and how they respond to love.  She said that you can generally divide people into two groups: 'those who feel a deep sense of love and belonging, and those who struggle for it.'  She goes on to say that the only real significant difference between them is this:  those who feel a deep sense of love and belonging 'believe they are worthy of love and belonging.' (Daring Greatly, pg 11)

 Do you believe you are worthy of being loved? 

I am going to say something to you and I really want you to hear it. . .you, not somebody else but you, are worthy of being loved.

I say this with every confidence that Jesus is saying exactly the same thing to you because He made you in His image and wants you to be free to enjoy all the benefits of what that means.  Experiencing His love and feeling His acceptance will set you free to live wholeheartedly.  It means that you no longer have to fight for your place in the world or in other people's lives, because He has already established you in wholeness in Him.

Living wholeheartedly means that you are able to bring love to others out of a place of fullness.  There is such a beautiful strength and peace about people who live like that.  They are able to calmly express this love in a harsh and wrestling world.  They are the ones who can take a hit and still love. 

And that is what you are invited into as well.

In 1 Corinthians 13:8 we here this short yet powerful statement: "Love never fails."

Maybe you need to feel the power of Jesus' love for you?  Well, I'm here to tell you that His love will never fail you.

May you live wholeheartedly in a struggling world, and may you be filled with the love of Jesus so you can love everyone else around you like crazy.


Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Wholehearted (The First One. . .)

Imagine living with a full heart, ready and able to step into each day from a place of contented strength and purpose.  What might that look and feel like?

Brene Brown, in her book "Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead" imagines this for us and invites us to explore living 'wholeheartedly.'

I want to explore this with you as well and discover how living wholeheartedly can help us in our spiritual lives.

The first point that Brown makes in this regard has to do with love.  She writes: "Love and belonging are irreducible needs of all men, women, and children.  We're hardwired for connection--it's what gives purpose and meaning to our lives.  The absence of love, belonging, and connection always leads to suffering."

This truth may make it seem that now is the worst time to grow in this regard.  We are living in a self-isolating world and being forced to give up intimate connection with others.  This is challenging to be certain. But it is also an opportunity to pursue a love that is foundational to love itself.

Jesus is the epitome of love.  His presence on earth was the expression of God's love to humanity.  He came to invite us into a kind of life that perfectly reflects wholeheartedness.  It might sometimes be tempting to think of Jesus as coming to inform us of the rules and regulations of right living, but if we think that was the main reason we would be wrong . .

Jesus was motivated by love and invites us to receive, experience and share this same love.

And love changes everything.

Talking with his disciples in John 15:9 Jesus says, "As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.  Now remain in my love."

This is such a powerful expression of love that transforms us into wholehearted people.  Jesus was loved; he came to share this love; and we are invited to live in this love every single day of our lives.  This incorporates Brown's description of our greatest needs: to be loved and to share love.  But the importance of knowing the love of Jesus is that this love is unconditional.  We don't need to earn it.  We don't need to perform in order to deserve it.  We don't need to be a champ to win it.  In fact, the nature of this kind of love is that it picks me up when I struggle.

I think this is timely for us because we are living in times when it is so very easy to struggle.  I want you to be reminded, or maybe realize for the first time, that the love of Jesus for you is the exact thing you need to not only get through your day but to actually begin to live wholeheartedly.

I want to challenge you to consider two things for yourself today:  1.  Take a moment to ask Jesus to show you what his love for you feels like and let it sink in.  2.  Allow yourself to believe that this love is meant to move you to share it with someone else.  If you do these two things you will begin to see what it feels like to live wholeheartedly.

Many, many blessings to you on this good day.


Monday, March 30, 2020

Being Gluey

Sometimes I’m amazed when I see how people reach out to others to help them along in life.  Those seemingly insignificant acts that will never make it onto the ‘hero’ list, but are nonetheless the powerful glue that holds life together.

Our lives need that kind of glue.

I see gluey living in a mom that chooses to hold her crying baby after 3 hours of continuous fussing.  I see a gluey life being expressed when someone asks a friend how they are doing even when they are struggling themselves. And I see that same glue through the efforts of healthcare workers that go above and beyond the call of duty to care for people affected by Covid 19.

It might sound silly but being gluey makes life beautiful.  And I think it’s important to recognize that the gluey expressions of care that I describe all happen in the midst of challenges and hardships.  That’s when being gluey for others really matters.

We all experience suffering on some level and at various times.  None of us are immune to this reality of life.  But Jesus, in His wisdom, knew what it would take to make life not only bearable but beautiful and so He did two things: He lived a gluey life and then invited us to do the same.

In Ephesians 5:2 it says “...walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering for us and sacrifice to God.”

Sin breaks apart and fragments our world our our lives, but the sacrificial love of Jesus glues it back together. And just like an army of ‘Humpty Dumpty’s’ we have been glued back together by this same love of Jesus.

So today, when you read this, if you are moved in appreciation for the gluey life of Jesus, then reach out to someone around you and be that same glue for them.

And when you do be encouraged that at least one person sees you as a hero!


Thursday, March 26, 2020

Helping Hand

I remember times when I was just a kid when my Dad would do this one simple thing and it seemed to make such a difference in my day.  If I was frustrated and struggling he would do this.  If I was being a brat he would this.  It didn't really matter what was going on, when he did this one thing it would make an impact on me.  Do you want to know what it was?

He put his hand on my shoulder.

When I needed support, his hand on my shoulder would tell me that his strength would hold me up.  When I needed discipline and direction, his hand on my shoulder would allow me to see myself within borders that helped me to not stray too far where I would really hurt myself.

His hand on my shoulder was like life to me.  It wasn't always pleasant, but it was always good.

When a hand is put on you it can really do powerful things.  And when a good hand is put on you, it can do impossible things.  In Acts 11 we read about the newly established church that was struggling to survive amidst strong opposition.  The new followers of Jesus were trying to help others to find freedom in Christ and it says in verse 21 "The Lord's hand was with them, and a great number of people believed and turned to the Lord."

When the hand of God is upon you great things happen. 

Are you in a place where a strong, good hand would be welcome?  Maybe your thoughts are taking you to dark places in the times we live in?  I want you to know that the hand of God on your shoulder can make all the difference in the world. 

It does for me.

My prayer for you today is that Jesus would capture your attention and that you would ask Him to show you what the strong and good hand of God feels like on your shoulder.  You won't be disappointed.

Have a great day friends.


Tuesday, March 24, 2020

A View of the Horizon

I live in a part of the world that has some of the most beautiful sunrises and sunsets there is.  There are times when they are so brilliant that they cause me to stop and catch my breath. 

It's important that we have these moments, those times when we can stop and breathe in the beauty that surrounds us.  But there is something even more important about these moments, something that helps us to live well in trying times.  When we stop and receive the stunning views of a horizon that is vibrantly displaying its glory, we find ourselves offered a gift. . .a gift of hope.  It's like what you are seeing in the distance is inviting you to be changed in that moment.  You can begin to see your life as something bigger than only the immediate, no matter what it is that you are going through.  It gives you a sense that you are part of something bigger than just you, and bigger than just now, and it can bring a sense of meaning and purpose that goes beyond your circumstances.

This is what it means to see your life as part of a timeline that is heading somewhere with intent.  This is what it means to catch a glimpse of your life as connected to a greater 'voice' that is somehow revealing itself as having the power and the plan to lead your life forward.  This is what it means to experience a moment of peace, knowing that something, or someone, has you in hand.

As a follower of Jesus Christ, I believe my life is part of something just like I described.  I can see my current circumstance and get pretty down, but then I am reminded of my life's horizon, and that view is enough to wake me up to something much better.

The voice of the One who has already designed my life's horizon says to me "Yes, I am coming soon." In that short declaration Jesus shows me that my life is much more than just my current challenges, and He gives me perspective to see that things are going to be OK.

Sometimes we need to get a view of the horizon in our lives to help us see the big picture.  Today I want to encourage you to let Jesus show you the horizon He has in mind for you, because it will be one that takes your breath away.

Many blessings on you friends. .  .


Monday, March 23, 2020

Deep Roots

I remember quite a few years ago living in place where we had all these scraggly willow trees that served as a hedge around our front yard. Half of them were dead or dying and they looked terrible so in a moment of intense motivation I decided I was going to tear out all these eye sores and start from scratch, planting some nice fresh lilacs.

My enthusiasm was soon met with a formidable foe: roots! Even though we had a backhoe for the major work, I still battled against those stubborn roots as they emulated the energizer bunny and kept going and going...

One thing that really struck me about those roots was how alive and strong were the ones that were underneath trees that seemed half-dead above ground.  I have been thinking about this the last few days...

Roots really matter.  They anchor us, hold us up under intense storms.  They don’t get a lot of attention but provide invaluable foundations that help us to stand.  And sometimes even when our visible everyday lives go through a beating, to the point when we can feel half-dead, we can be surprised when our roots hold us firm.

The wisdom of God’s Word tells us that the things of this world are fleeting, that they can get pretty beat up with the storms that come.  It also tells us that there are things that provide for us anchors that are unaffected by anything this world can throw at us.

Ephesians 3:17 says that if you find your life in Jesus then you are rooted and established in love. It says that this love is powerful and that it has the ability to provide for us in ways that go beyond our ability to even comprehend.

This love is much more than just a feeling, it is a truth that declares that in Jesus we are now rooted and established in Him.  He is love and we are now found in that place of provision and protection.

Rooted and established in a love that is pointed directly toward us, infusing us, watching over us, caring for us, and guiding us.

My life may look like it has been ravaged by storms; it may seem that I am found in circumstances that are beyond my control and as such, that my life is in danger.  But if you thought this you would be wrong.  Why? Because I am rooted and established in love and that Love has got me well in hand.

Maybe you feel like you are hanging on by a thread; maybe you don’t feel like you have roots that will weather the storm.  Jesus is more than willing to root you in His love, and that changes everything.

There is nothing in all creation, including Covid-19, and governmental mandated shut down of whole economies, that can separate you from the love of Jesus.

Here’s to new roots...


Friday, March 20, 2020

Seeing Beyond

Sometimes we just need help to see beyond our normal lives.  We find ourselves embedded in the daily grind, with all the responsibilities that come with doing 'life' and to be honest it can be really great.  But if you are like me, there is often a sense, kind of just lurking in the background of my mind, of something more.  It is usually hard to define but it is still there and it seems to invite me to consider the idea that this life I am enjoying is made possible because it is built on something with far deeper meaning and strength.

I am on a journey to discover more clearly what this 'deeper' thing is because I believe that it is part of our call as the human race.  As we find these moments of deeper life, we discover meaning and purpose that often times evades us in our normal life-at-breakneck-speeds.

That's why I am writing.  And that's why I am writing to you, so that we can discover treasures together on this wonderful journey of life.

I was reading this just now and I thought it was relevant for our current times: "Carry each others' burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ." (Galatians 6:8)  As we walk through our Covid-19 world, let's remember to not only look after our own affairs, but consider how we can support and encourage those around us who might be really struggling. 

The hurt is real, but the love of Jesus is far greater.  Let's show that love today by stepping up and taking care of each other the best we can.

It will make a difference.

Praying for protection and provision for you today. . .