Wednesday, October 9, 2013


I apologize for my long absence from writing.  Life tends to fly by at a pace that it is hard to grasp all that is happening around us.  I have even had my own personal struggles and fears that I have had to deal with over the last year.  There are always trials, and changes that need to be faced.

So much has happened that have shaken my faith, but not destroyed it.  There have been injuries to loved ones, the loss of my grandmother to cancer, trying to buy a new home, a new job, and the list keeps on going.  And I have caught myself many times questioning why all this was happening all at about the same time.  Is it all a test?  Is it God showing me what I am capable of handling?  Is it preparation for something in the future?  And through all of my questioning, I have found that I had developed a lack of trust.  A lack of faith.  I had become prideful about my accomplishments, and somewhat bitter about my downfalls.  But, even at my lowest point, God was always there within reach.  It was not that He left me, but I allowed myself to move away from Him.

2 Chronicles 7:14
"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land."

Renewal to God is based on a few conditions as seen in this verse.  And these conditions all rest on us.  First, we have to humble ourselves.  We have to understand the fact that there is nothing about us good enough on our own to please God.  As Paul said, he did not feel worthy enough to tie the sandals of Christ's feet.  Only through humility, can we adequately approach the throne of God.  Secondly, we need to pray, and pray often.  If we want a right relationship with God, we need to speak to Him on a regular basis.  This is our way to reach out to Him.  As I stated earlier, He never leaves us and is always there.  Next, we need to seek Him.  We do this by studying the Word of God.  We look to find what He expects of us, and we learn of who He is.  This helps us to draw closer to him.  Lastly, we need to repent.  Repent literally means to have a change in mindset.  Not only do we need to ask forgiveness for our shortcomings, but we need to consciously change our actions to match.

When we submit to these four conditions, God brings about renewal to our lives.  He will hear our prayers, He will forgive our sins, and He will bring about healing for all of our sufferings.  No matter where we are in our lives, or the level to which we feel we suffer, God is still there.  We just have to recognize it, and actively seek Him for help.

Lord, forgive me for my distrust and distance from You.  I know that you have always been there, regardless of my situations.  And I know that I have come through them, not own my own power, but by Your grace.  Please give me the continued strength and guidance that You always have provided in times past.  Shower me with Your love and comfort, so that I can push on in this world,  and show the world who You are through what you have done in my life.


Thanks for reading and God bless you all!

Friday, July 12, 2013


Hello all.  Forgive me for my absence from the blogging world these last couple of months.  Life is always interesting, and presenting new challenges.  But, I have felt really encouraged this past week to continue my writing.

The inspiration for this post comes from the dinner table.  Now those of you who have or have had small children my gain some appreciation from this.  One thing that I have noticed from my kids, ages 7, 4, and 2, is that they are always in a hurry.  "When is supper going to be ready?"  "Can I have a small snack while I wait?"  "Can we hurry up and say the blessing?"  "Can I get down and leave the table?"  My wife and I have been using the all powerful "Just wait a minute."  Supper time at my house is a big deal.  Not only is my wife an awesome cook, but that is the only time that I get to spend with my family when I am working.  As a teacher, and a varsity coach, when school is in, I miss a lot of those moments.  So we stress the need for family time.  This made me think of an Old Testament verse.

Isaiah 40:31
"Yet those who wait for the Lord Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary."

Waiting can be the most stressful things we as humans can do.  We want what we want, when we want it.  Waiting can also cause all sorts of anxiety.  Take a job for instance.  From the time that you apply for a job, the anxiety builds while you wait.  Will they call for an interview?  Did they like my interview?  Will they call back?  Did I get the job, or did that pass me up for someone else?  The same can be said for waiting on your child to be born.  Is the baby ok?  Will the baby come early?  Will I be a good parent?  And once you get to the hospital to have the baby, how much longer before the baby is here?

However when we wait upon the things of God in our lives, the anxiety is absent if we truly trust in Him.  I have been told often that things happen in God's timing, and not ours.

Proverbs 3:5-6
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight."

Philippians 4:6-7
" Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."

God has a specific plan for us.  When we try to do things on our own, without seeking the will of God, we deal with all sorts of anxiety.  But, when we trust in the Lord, when we pray about the direction God has in our lives, and be at peace with the fact that God is in control, waiting does not seem so bad.  Because the reward in the end is so much greater.

Thanks for reading, and I pray that God will bless you all!

Friday, March 15, 2013


I love working in education.  Now don't get me wrong, there are days that I get frustrated with the woes of working in public education.  The pay is terrible, and the hours can be long.  Many times I have to take work home.  And there are always those students, that no matter what you do, just don't care.  However, each child that comes to me and says thank you, or comes back to visit after graduation just to visit me and ask for help outweighs all of the bad.

Now one of the best strategies that I have for teaching, and coaching, is modeling.  I try to model what I expect them to do.  If it is an assignment, I show them how to work out some examples.  If it is a concept, I give them a chance to create a real life example, or I make up one, to help them visualize.  When I coach, I get on the field and practice with them.  I show them exactly what I want them to do, and do it with them.  To me, this is the best way to learn.  Now don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with a good lecture every once in a while.  But, the best way to learn is by experiencing it.

The same is true with Christianity.  The best way to share it, is to show it.

John 5:36
"But the testimony which I have is greater than the testimony of John; for the works which the Father has given Me to accomplish—the very works that I do—testify about Me, that the Father has sent Me."

Here Christ was telling of His testimony, not by words that He had said, but by the works that He did.  That was the testimony of who He was.  As we strive to be more Christ-like, we have to model what we learn in the bible.  It is not just enough to quote scripture.  Anyone can do that, and learn it.  But it is the actual application of it to our daily lives that is the biggest witness to others.  Do they here us and see us live it?  There are a lot of people in this world that are playing church.  As Revelations 3 teaches us, they are lukewarm.  Neither cold nor hot.  They put on a good show to go to church, but do their actions away from church show the same life.  When we model the Christian faith, or live it outwardly, we show the world a true look at what Christianity really is.  And not what they see and hear from TV and some internet counterfeits.

So, the question today is, what are you modeling?  Because, what we model is what we truly believe in.

Thanks for reading, and I pray that God will bless you all!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Acts of Kindness

Wow, what a week.  I have been home since Wednesday tending to my wife and daughters with the flu.  I hate seeing them sick, especially the baby.  She does not know how to tell us what hurts.  Instead she just cries.  And hearing your one year old cry can rip your heart out when you know there is not much you can do for them other than to try to make them comfortable.  One good thing though is the people that I work with.  They have been very helpful and supportive in this time.  One of the teachers has been helping me coach for free, and took over my two games this week.  And more importantly, the prayers being offered by them have been the best help.  This matched so well with our bible study at church Sunday night.  So I think I will take time this week to share with all of you a little about acts of kindness.

Galatians 5:22-23
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. "

Kindness is one of the fruits of the spirit.  It is also one of the things that are evident in a true Christian's life.  Is it hard to show kindness to others sometimes?  Of course it is.  It is not in the nature of human beings to be kind to each other.  It is only by the help of the Holy Spirit that we can fully achieve true kindness.  Now, I want to expound on what I believe to be true kindness.  This is the kindness brought about by the Holy Spirit.

First, kindness is an expression of love.  When reading in 1 Corinthians 13 we see the phrase "love is kind", and "it does not seek its own".  When Jesus was performing all of His miracles, He was doing it out of love for those around Him.  All of them were in need, in either one aspect or another.  And He met that need.  And it was truly unconditional.  He never told any of them that He expected them to repay Him for his kindness.  How many times do we do things for others, but seek repayment or special recognition for the kindness.  If we do, was it a true act of kindness?  I say no.  Because the only reason for doing it was because of something we could gain from it.  And in so doing, we lose the blessings that come from it.  A truly, Holy Spirit led act of kindness seeks no recognition or gain from the act.  That being said, who do I be kind to?

Luke 6:31-36
"Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. If you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners in order to receive back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful."

We should show that love and kindness to all people, including those who hurt or persecute us.  This is one aspects that separate Christianity from other religions.  We are taught to show love and kindness to all people.  As hard as it may be sometimes, we must strive to do this.  Christ displayed this for us on the cross.  he died for all of our sins.  He knew that everyone would not accept Him and follow Him.  But He died for them just the same.  Are we willing to sacrifice of ourselves, even to those who are against us?  In a way, this is a true witness of who we are and who we believe in.  You never know who is watching.  That person may see how you treat those that mistreat you.  If you repay hurt for hurt, that may be the perception they get about Christians, and never want to be a part of that.  And think about the witness to the person that hurts you.  You may be the one that God is sending to that person to show them who He is.  That act of kindness may be the catalyst that leads to them coming to a saving knowledge of Christ.

Lastly, one of the greatest acts of kindness we can show, is to share the gospel with others.  By sharing the gospel, we can in effect share the love that God has for all of us.  If that leads to that person's salvation, then that act of kindness changed their eternal destination.

Hope you enjoyed reading this.  And I hope you received a blessing from it. Thanks for reading, and God bless you all this week!a

Monday, February 25, 2013

What Would Your Letter Say?

Hi all!  It feels good to have the opportunity to write again.  Lots of things have been going on that have left me unable to post for a while, but with a small bit of free time, I felt that today would be a good day to begin again.  I have recently begun to question many things about my life.  No, I am not having a mid-life crisis.  That would be kind of sad to think that I would only live to see 60.  But more so, If I could have a one on one conversation with God, what would He say about me.  How would He feel about the way I am living and the things that I am doing.  While reading through my bible, I came across an interesting set of scripture.

Romans 1:7-10
"to all who are beloved of God in Rome, called as saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, because your faith is being proclaimed throughout the whole world. For God, whom I serve in my spirit in the preaching of the gospel of His Son, is my witness as to how unceasingly I make mention of you, always in my prayers making request, if perhaps now at last by the will of God I may succeed in coming to you."

 Wouldn't it be cool to get a letter from one of the Apostles?  Or even better, from God?  The book of Romans is nothing more than a letter that Paul wrote to the church at Rome.  We know that this letter was intended for the church(body of believers) because it is addressed to those called as saints.  In the same fashion as he does with all of his letters, Paul includes a message of grace to those in which he writes.  But the next part is what struck me.  He made sure to let them know that he was thanking God for them!  WOW!  Now there is a way to make a believer feel good.  But why?  Because their faith was being proclaimed throughout the whole world.  At this point in time, Paul was in Corinth which is around 1000 miles away.  And he was getting news of the faith of that church and its spread.  The people were sharing the Gospel and maturing in their faith.  And this gave Paul a since of pride, even though He, at this point, had never been to Rome.

What would your letter say?  Would you be praised for your faith, and all of the good things that you are doing?  What would it say?

Thanks for reading, and God bless you all!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Thoughts of Living Every Day

I am one excited individual.  This week marks the two year birthday of this blog!  Writing these devotions has been a great blessing to me.  I have seen more clearly how God can move in my life.  I have had the opportunity to expound on the things that I have learned through my experiences.  But in thinking of something to write for this week as a good 2nd birthday for this blog I was a little puzzled.  Maybe this could be from my not being able to post as often as I would like because of circumstances being what they are.  But, every time that I find myself in a struggle, God is always there.  So, today, I will begin a new commitment.  I will try to do the same for those that I see in my life.  How? Here is a list of things I will try to do everyday in my life.  Why everyday?  Because life is too short and we are none guaranteed tomorrow.

1.  I am going to pray a little more.

I have been guilty a lot of wallowing in my troubles, and not praising for the good times.  I guess that is just one area in my life that I struggle to deal with.  I get so caught up with life that sometimes God takes a backseat to what I want, and what I feel I need.  So, starting today, I am going to make it a point to pray more each and everyday.  To try never to place God in the backseat of my life, but in the driver seat.

Psalm 71:1-3
"In You, O Lord, I have taken refuge; Let me never be ashamed.  In Your righteousness deliver me and rescue me; Incline Your ear to me and save me.  Be to me a rock of habitation to which I may continually come; You have given commandment to save me, For You are my rock and my fortress."

I will trust in Him more every day.  Because I know that nothing in this world matters more than the will of the One who causes my every breath.

2.  I am going to seek to be more forgiving.

Oh my at the things that I have done wrong in my life.  If it were not for grace and the forgiveness of God, I would have no hope in this life.  I admit that I sin everyday, and I need His forgiveness.  However, sometimes I find it hard to be forgiving to others.

Matthew 6:14-15
" For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions."

What right do I have not to forgive someone for a wrong that has been done to me.  Begging God to forgive me, yet not returning that favor to my fellow man is kind of hypocritical.  God loves that person just as much as He loves me.  And God will forgive that person, if they are truly saved, and so should I.  We are not going to get along with everyone we come across, and we will not always agree.  But we all are children of God, and we have a witness to display to the lost.  They have a chance to view God's forgiveness when they see it in us.

3.  I am going to do more to help those in need.

Sometimes I feel so ashamed for the attitudes that I carry.  God has blessed me above and beyond what I deserve.  And sometimes I fail to see that there are others around me that have less than me.  And sometimes I fear to reach out because I worry about what I want, not what they need.

Matthew 25:34-40
"Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’"

I may not have much to offer, but anytime that I am able to help those in need around me, I will try.

Again these are areas in my life that I commit to do better.  What about you?  Are there areas in your life that you feel are in need of a big tune up?  If so, why not join me in a commitment to do better this year.

Thanks for reading, and I pray that God will bless you all this week.