Monthly Archives: February 2021

Book Writing Goal

I have a goal of taking the best 365 of the approximately 2500 blogs I have written in the last seven years and putting them together in a devotional book. I need some volunteers who would like to read through my blogs and pick out the best ones. When we get the best ones picked out, I will need some people to volunteer to proofread them and correct all the spelling and grammar errors and condense them a bit to a max of 300 words. I could do it all myself but I probably wouldn’t ever finish it, but with some helpers, it should be an accomplishable goal and even fun.

One of my major pastoring principles over the last 45 years has been “whatever you do, if possible, do it together with others, because it is easier, more fun, and it turns out better.”

Shoveling Gravel

Today I am shoveling gravel into a wheelbarrow and pushing it down our driveway and filling potholes. We have a long gravel driveway and about this time of year it gets about a million potholes and some of them are as big as a small lake. I either needed to plant fish in them or fill them up, so I am filling them up. It seems like I get tuckered out quicker than I used to, so I am doing two wheelbarrow loads and then coming in and resting for about 10 minutes in my recliner. While I sit here, I am working on memorizing Bible verses and writing this blog. At this point, I have done ten loads with about four more to go until I finish the job. After that, I will go work on the 1969 mustang unless I am to done in to do it, which is a real possibility. I probably will skip my hour of stationary bicycle riding tonight, counting this as my exercise for today.

At times like this I fantasize about my new glorified body that I am going to get when I enter eternity. In Philippians it says that God will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of Jesus. That is going to be one really cool body and mind. As I sit in my recliner breathing hard and sweating I am so thankful for my relationship with Jesus Christ and the positive hope that I have that this life is just about over and then glory, that will be glory indeed.

Alright, enough of this, back to shoveling.

God is Good

This last week was a lot of fun. We started on Monday at 5:00 am, praying as the beginning of our five days of prayer. We prayed for ten hours each day, Monday through Friday, specifically for the Missions Ministry of JBC and for the “Special Offering” we were taking this weekend. The offering that we took today was our missions ministry budget for the year, and our goal was $125,000. With all the things that have been happening in our lives it was hard to predict how we were going to do in the special offering. Because the prayer time this last week was so powerful and so many people participated I felt sure that we would reach our goal. There were a lot of people gone this morning from our services because of the ice and no electricity so I was bit nervous about attaining our goal, but so far we have $160,000 that has come in and I bet that by the end of the week when those who were gone give, that we will be close to $175,000!! Yes, God is so good!

We do three “Special Offerings” each year, one for our church building projects, a second for Home Land Missions, and then this one for our Foreign Missions Ministry. Each offering has a special prayer time and a goal for the amount that we pray for. Over the last 40 years of Special Offerings, I don’t think we have missed our goal more than a couple of times. It is always exciting to reach our goal and to know that God has blessed many with extra funds as they have traditionally given sacrifially to our church and special offerings.

Our offering today was an immediate answer to prayer. Still, most of the 2,500 people/hours of prayer this last week was for God to bless the various missionaries and ministries around the world. Many people will be brought into the family of God through the work and ministry of these missionaries and ministries. I believe that because of the extraordinary prayer offered up this last week that many amazing results are going to happen around the world.

Yes, it was an enjoyable week and weekend.

Camping in the Living Room

We had a big freezing rain storm last night, and as a result, many houses are without electricity, including ours. We have a wood stove, so we are camping in the living room. I had bacon and eggs that Patty cooked on the stove, and tonight we had chicken, rice, and broccoli all cooked on the top of our woodstove. We also have had some excellent cowboy coffee made on the stove. We have trees all around our house and the limbs all got covered with about an inch of ice. This morning as the ice began to melt big hunks of ice would drop onto our metal roof. It sounded like a war in our house this morning for several hours as very big chunks of ice fell, and our metal roof made it sound like we were inside a base drum.

It was a cool way to spend a Saturday camping in our living room. I stayed very warm, took a nap, got lots of reading done, rode my exercise bike for over an hour, wrote this blog, prayed for everybody at JBC, and did a lot of writing for my preaching and teaching ministry.

One of the characteristics of tough people is that they are flexible, they enjoy the challenge of unannounced difficulties and trials, they are creative in solving roadblocks, and they are always fun to be around, even when the convenience of electricity is gone.

Government Control Freaks

1 John 4:3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.

The spirit of the antichrist is already in the world meaning satan is working in government rulers now, today. He gives them abilities, charisma, and power to lead and rule. They start out nice, but they soon turn into a beast. The spirit of the antichrist is characterized by an obsession with control and those who are under such leaders increasingly feel restricted and lose more and more personal freedom. It is clear in the Bible that this is what is coming and it will get increasingly worse until Jesus wins the battle of Armageddon.

Ezekiel 28 is obviously talking about satan, but Ezekiel calls him the King of Tyre, because he was in the King of Tyre controlling him. Satan and his demons primary place of residence is in the mind and heart of rulers of countries.

Ezekiel 28:12-14 Son of man, take up a lamentation over the king of Tyre and say to him, ‘Thus says the Lord God, You had the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering: The ruby, the topaz and the diamond; The beryl, the onyx and the jasper; The lapis lazuli, the turquoise and the emerald; and the gold, the workmanship of your settings and sockets, was in you. On the day that you were created they were prepared. You were the anointed cherub who covers, and I placed you there. You were on the holy mountain of God; you walked in the midst of the stones of fire.

As you listen to Presidents, Senators, Govenors, Represemtatives and Judges in our country are there some “signs” that the kingdom of darkness is controlling them? Yes there are several, a key one is that they become “control freaks“, and we are seeing that right now all over our world, not just in our own country.

As we see the antichrist’s spirit becoming increasingly more prevalent and powerful in our government, what should we do, and how should we act? Our job now is not to fix things and make things right; our job is to be a witness for Jesus and reach as many people for Jesus as we possibly can.

I will still be responsible and vote, I will write letters to government officials objecting to what is wrong, I will pray diligently for government leaders that God will work in their hearts, and I will teach people what the truth is and what is a lie every chance I get. But my main job is to bring as many people as possible with me into the Kingdom of God.

Commit to that God-given calling every morning.

Coming of Jesus

Matthew 16:2-3 But Jesus replied to them, “ When it is evening, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.’ And in the morning, ‘There will be a storm today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Do you know how to discern the appearance of the sky, but cannot discern the signs of the times?

Matthew 24:32-33 Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near; so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door.

Genesis 6:5-8 Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. The Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. The Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.

Matthew 24:37-39 For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be.

On Sunday’s at 10:15 to 11:15 am, I teach a class on Eschatology or prophecy. You can listen to the class on YouTube as well as attending the class in person. This week I will be talking about the New Jerusalem which comes down out of heaven and lands on the earth. It should be a fun class.

I Would Like to Fly Away

Psalms 55:3-7
Because of the voice of the enemy,
Because of the pressure of the wicked;
For they bring down trouble upon me
And in anger they bear a grudge against me.
My heart is in anguish within me,
Fear and trembling come upon me,
And horror has overwhelmed me.
I said, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest.
“Behold, I would wander far away,
I would lodge in the wilderness.

Sometimes the desire to go to some secluded cabin in the woods where there is no cell coverage, take enough food for a month and just stay there is so strong. I know of several places that I could use for free. I would take Patty with me of course, and we would have a very nice time. I am sure it would be incredibly refreshing.

But for the last several days I have been experiencing even better than that. We are in the middle of our 5 days of prayer, we pray for 10 hours each day, and I have been in the prayer room most of the time. It so totally consumes my thinking that I truly don’t have a single thought about covid, impeachments, masks, or taxes.

Sitting in God’s manifest presence with others who are believing in God’s love and presence as much as I am is incredibly exhilarating, relaxing, and renewing.

JBC Corporate Prayer

The first day of our “Five Days of Prayer” was terrific. There was such a powerful sense of God’s presence in the prayer room that even an old stoic like me could sense His presence. Psalms 16:11 says, “in your presence is fullness of joy,” and there was a very positive sense that life was good despite circumstances and that God was in control. We indeed were the “Army of God” today, and we stomped the devil under our feet. When we pray, God commissions angels, and He energizes them; the more we pray, the more angels are set loose, and the more power they get. The devil and his demons aren’t going to know what hit them after this week. They will be restricted from blinding people’s spiritual eyes and binding their wills, and people will be set free. It doesn’t get much better than that knowing that I have been part of an activity that results in people being transferred from the domain of darkness to the kingdom of His beloved Son.

We are praying the rest of this week 5 to 10 morning an evening. Give it a try.

So Much to Do

There are so many people who need help that I could help. There are so many ministry opportunities that I could start or do that would have amazing results. There are so many opportunities to go fishing. There are so many car projects and home projects that I would love to do. I need to ride my stationary bike every day for an hour and lift weights to keep my Parkinson’s under control. I really need to start running again. I have so many really good goals that I haven’t started yet.

I read my goals everyday and write a daily todo list to put pressure on myself to work smart and fast all day long, but even still there are so many things that I don’t get done.

I have a goal of getting about 80% on my todo list done everyday. If I get less done I shorten the list and if I get everything crossed off my list I make it longer. When I write the list for the day I have to choose what is on the list and what gets left off. It is a daily choosing priorities and the amount of pressure I want on me so that I make those most of my time,

I only have one thing on my todo list tomorrow besides my daily disciples and that is to pray in the ‘upper room” for ten hours.

I Like Me

There are some interesting balancing acts that I work at maintaining in my own life. I want very much to “walk humbly with my God”, and not become proud or arrogant, and I also want to accurately assess what I am good at and where I am strong. I want to press on and grow in my character so I need to acknowledge my weak areas and where I consistently fail, but I don’t want to make myself feel like a loser so that I give up. I want to do more, accomplish more, bear more fruit, and I am always disappointed with what I actually accomplished in any given week, or month, or even year. I am always way below what I set as goals in almost every area of my life. I want to have huge dreams and desires, but on the other hand I don’t want my goals to bury me and become an anchor around my neck. So many guys my age (72) have lost their passion and desire to accomplish something great with their life and they are unmotivated because they are realistic about their abilities and energy level at this stage in their life.

The key for me is to work really hard at being faithful and consistent in my Bible time and prayer life. A person can’t walk humbly with their God if they don’t walk with Him much at all. Spend time with God, seek God, draw near to God, work at pleasing Him, listen to my thoughts and discern those that are from God. The closer I am to God the easier it is for me to feel good about who I am without being prideful. The closer I am to God the more outlandish my goals can be without making me feel like a total loser.

I like me. I like who I am. I feel good about what I have accomplished with my life. But at the same time I am very much disappointed with who I am and want to become so much more, I am so discontent with my present level of accomplishment and dream of so much more in the days ahead.

It is a tricky balancing act but worth working to achieve.

A major secret to my success in this area of life is my devotion to prayer, especially corporate prayer, praying with others. It is supernaturally powerful to keep me balanced as I fail, fall, sin, and mess up, but at the same time dream really big dreams, and live inside of my own skin comfortably.

Monday through Friday is one of JBC’s “Five Days of Prayer” events. 5 to 10 am and pm. I look forward to praying with you.