Showing posts from 2012

Welcome to West Africa!

How do I even begin to describe our recent trip to West Africa?  No matter where I go in the world, I am always at home with our brothers and sisters. Even in seemingly dangerous places.

This time I had the enormous privilege of teaching biblical conflict resolution to a group of leaders at a Bible school where John taught a class on Apologetics. How does one teach peacemaking to a people who know religious persecution in a way that I have never experienced? Although I don't have all the answers, I do know One who has the answers. And I do have the best Book to guide me in all things. And that is what I shared.

I will never forget one of the students in my class, a former Muslim who became a Christian. Toward the end of the week and end of my teaching, he stood up and publicly confessed he had been harboring anger and hatred towards Muslims ever since his conversion. However, after learning biblical principles for peacemaking and conflict resolution, he realized he needed to for…

Pray for Peace for Jerusalem

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:  "May those who love you be secure.  May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels." Psalm 122:6-7

Are we no longer a Christian nation?

My immediate response to the election results---"Lord, have mercy on us."

Here is a thought-provoking analysis of our recent election: The Reelection of Barack Obama-One Pastor's Perspective.

Why Iowa?

John and I recently become reverse snowbirds. Leaving the warmth of sunny Southern California behind to try our first cold winter together in Iowa. It makes people curious enough to ask, “Why would you do that?!”
First, you would have to see and experience the remote lake area where we live. Peaceful, beautiful, and teeming with wildlife. There is nothing quite like waking up to watch a couple of young deer frolicking across the lawn, or grabbing the camera to take a photo of a majestic bald eagle perched in a neighbor’s tree, or endeavoring to look up that strange creature we unexpectedly saw run across the back porch (a rarely seen bobcat). We’ve lost count of the number of animals that frequent our property, but it includes turkey, geese, raccoons, blue jays, cardinals, orioles, goldfinches, woodpeckers, otter, beavers, muskrats, badgers, squirrels, chipmunks (affectionately called “squinnies” in Iowa), foxes, turtles, snakes, and even evil looking bats.
Second, you would have t…

If My People...

Join others praying for our country and for the election for the next 40 days.

If My People 2012

What's wrong with the HHS Mandate?

Earlier this year, the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services unveiled a new policy now known at the “HHS Mandate.” The new Mandate would require nearly all private health insurance plans to include coverage for all FDA-approved prescription contraceptive drugs and devices, surgical sterilizations and abortion-inducing drugs—drugs that interfere with implantation in the womb and therefore destroy the life of a human being in the earliest stage of development. This Mandate is the result of Affordable Care Act, commonly known as “Obamacare,” passed in 2010. Although the HHS Mandate provides an exemption for “religious employers,” the exemption is so narrow, most religious institutions providing health, educational or charitable services will have no protection.
          On February 10, 2012, responding to intense opposition from a broad spectrum of religious institutions all over the country, President Obama announced there would be an “accommodation” for religious institut…


GOOD FRIDAY: Jesus said, "It is finished." (John 19:30)
Jesus gave up His spirit on the cross on Good Friday. He had accomplished His mission. He came to earth, God in the flesh, born to die for us--to offer forgiveness for our sins, and eternal intimate relationship with God for those who believed. He invites us into the Holy of Holies, to worship Him at the mercy seat, His throne of grace. Do YOU believe?

What about “gray area” areas where the Bible is not specific?

This quote below is from Josh McDowell's website.         I thought it was so interesting and worth printing below.

Romans 14 is an excellent chapter for study in regard to making decisions concerning various issues not addressed in the Bible. Since most of what we do affects our relationships with others, study of this passage may help you reach a Christ-like decision that is best for you in your walk with the Lord, as well as your relationships with others.
Often it is easy to fall into the practice of passing judgment on those whose thinking does not line up with our own regarding a particular issue. Rather than pass judgment, we are to accept one another (Romans 14:1). Matters of the conscience–those not strictly addressed in the Bible–must be settled in relationship to God (14:4, 7-8, 12, 22). Our actions should not bring condemnation on us. We should be completely convinced in our own mind concerni…

Quest for the "Inner Ring"

"The quest for the Inner Ring will break your hearts unless you break it." "If you follow that desire you will reach no inside worth reaching." C.S. Lewis.

Last night at LSL, Dr. Jacob Rodriguez shared some amazing insight to how universities are powerfully influencing our worldview in a way that is incompatible with biblical Christianity. Here are some of his thoughts:

"One of the most alluring temptations all people face in life is the desire to be inside and the terror of being left outside. That is what C.S. Lewis called the desire to enter the "Inner Ring." What he meant by this was that people desire the secret intimacies and confidentialities of some group or association, to be with those that are in the know, to be with some "in crowd," to be an inner ringer of wealth or political power and influence. The whole struggle to be on the inside of that invisible line and to avoid the loneliness and humiliation of being o…

Life Crisis

This past month at Life Streams, the topic was “Life Crisis.” Timely message for many of us. I once heard that at any given time, we are either in the middle of a crisis, we’ve just been through a crisis, or one is about to happen. Where do you fit into this paradigm? What do we do when we find ourselves in a life crisis?

First, what is a crisis? A crisis can take many different forms. For example, financial crisis, relationship crisis, employment crisis, health crisis, natural disaster crisis, and faith crisis. A crisis is a trial, usually with a turning point. It can cause a sudden change, which may lead to better or worse.

Naturally we don’t like crisis. Why? It is painful. We have little or no control, so we are afraid. We suffer. And we don’t want to suffer.

James 1:2-4 tells us, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature …


"For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him."  John 3:16-18

God's love is crazy and amazing. There is no one like Him.

"God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While were were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8

We don't deserve God's love. And yet He loves us. We are His creation.

Crazy love. 

He loved us soooo much, that He sent His Son Jesus Christ to earth to be born in the flesh and die a horrifying death for our sins, so that we could have intimate fellowship with Him and eternal life if we believe in Jesus.

How can we possibly respond to this kind of enormous, sacrificial loving act?

By loving Him back. With everything we have. Surrender all to Jesus.

Crazy love.

"Jesus replied: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all y…


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Spiritual Warfare

What comes to mind when someone mentions "spiritual warfare"? Do you think of scheming charlatans who make a living "casting out demons"?  Do you think of little devils running around in Halloween-type costumes, making small mischief in people's lives? Do you dismiss it as hocus-pocus nonsense?

None of these concepts are biblical.

Many of us simply don't understand.

And yet, spiritual warfare is an important reality taught in the Bible. See Ephesians 6:10-18. 

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For 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 in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everythi…

Receive Christ

(An excerpt from Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog today) 

Have you given your life wholly and completely to Jesus Christ? Have you asked Him to forgive you of all your sins, to give you eternal life, and to fill you with His joy, His peace, and His wisdom and strength through the power of His Holy Spirit? If not, let this be the day you receive Christ into your heart by faith. 

This is a great concise explanation of the Gospel! Click here.

Please read it. Please pray the suggested prayer at the end with a sincere, humble and repentant heart. And please post a comment below or go to our website and contact us to tell us that you’ve become a follower of Christ. Let us rejoice with you and encourage you and give  you suggestions on how to grow in your new faith, and how to share your faith with others. You could start by sharing this message with others.

Freedom in Christ

"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free." Galatians 5:1 Freedom in Christ does not mean the right to do as we please. Freedom in Christ means the ability to choose to do the right thing---faith expressing itself through love.