Category Archives: Uncategorized

Five Days of Prayer

This is a picture of our Five Days of Prayer last year during our missions prayer time. We had a lot of different people show up to pray and it was a very blessed time. But there were also a lot of people who didn’t show up at all. I often wonder what causes some to pray and others to not pray. I have come to the conclusion that it is faith, some believe strongly that their time matters to God and that the more they pray the more God will work, and others don’t have much faith that there praying amounts to much of anything.

Faith is a condition of our inner man, not of our intellect. Our faith can grow strong and it also can decline and become weak and wimpy. Jesus said that with faith the size of a mustard seed not much is impossible for us to accomplish. Our faith grows fast when we are praying. Praying is a major act of faith so the act of praying when we doubt it will make any differenc is a major exercise for making our faith grow stronger and stronger. So if you want to grow strong in faith pray more. The perfect time to pray is the “Five Days of prayer” coming up Monday through Friday, Febrary 8th through the 12th. We pray from 5:00 am to 10:00 am each morning, and again 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm each evening. Come pray with us.

Daily Dozen Disciplines and Duties

A Discipline is something that our flesh doesn’t like to do, the devil is going to make his best effort to keep us from doing it, but it is extremely important that we stay faithful to these disciplines for the sake of our spiritual growth, our relationship with the Lord, and our accomplishments for the Lord. In each of these disciplines, I have made a goal and I read them every day to keep me motivated to successfully do each one of them every day.

1. Read the Bible. My goal is to read 14 chapters every day.

2. Spend thirty minutes by myself praying for people in JBC, Agape, lost friends, missionaries, the government, and my family.

3. Spend thirty minutes minimum in memorizing scripture verses and meditating on them.

4. Read 20 pages in a good book, so that I can remain a learner and a thinker all of my life.

5. Listen to a podcast or a audio recording of a good sermon.

6. Write in my journal about discoveries about myself and life that will help me grow. Also to use my writing in my journal as a time of personal confession of sin.

7. Write my blog everyday. I pray and ask God to give me a special anointing from Him so that I write well, and that many would take the time to read it.

8. Read my goals. I have 75 goals but many of them are goals that I write every year that I put on the list of my goals because I show my goals to lots of people to motivate them to set goals, so mine are a model and and example for them. So the number of goals that I write out to read every day is about 40.

9. Exercise by either riding my stationary bike or lifting weights for one hour every day. This discipline is super important to keep my Parkinson’s under control.

10. Pray my prayer of commitment every morning presenting myself to the Lord as my Lord and me as His servant, and asking for wisdom and strength to serve Him well.

11. Write my “todo” list for the next day.

12. Tell Patty I love her five times every day, spend time talking with her, and go on a date twice each month.

Read the Bible

I read 14 chapters each day in the Bible. My goal is 12 but I almost always read 14 so I am going to change my goal. I read 2 chapters in the Old Testament, Genesis through Malachi, minus Psalms and Proverbs. That gets me through the Old Testament once a year. I read 5 chapters in Psalms each day, getting me through Psalms every month. I read 1 chapter each day in Proverbs and because there is 31 chapters in Proverbs I read it through each month. I read 2 chapters in the gospels, then Acts and Revelation. That gets me through those six books four times in the year. I read 4 chapters each day in the Epistles, Romans through Jude, and I get through them every month. That reading schedule seems like a lot but I can read it easily in 45 minutes. Reading the Epistle, Psalms and Proverbs every month and the Gospel, Acts and Revelation four times a year and the Old Testament once, is a lot of Bible that will transform your thinking. I also spend one hour every day memorizing Bible verses and meditate on them. That discipline not only gets God’s Word down into my heart but it improves my memory and my ability to think and ponder and solve problems. Make a goal to read every day. Figure out a plan and schedule and only compromise on the schedule for things that matter. The people who keep their plan are those in an accountability group. I have a goal of starting six new groups this year.

Home from Fishing

This an old picture. I didn’t catch any fish today, but I promised you I would show you a picture of a fish so I dug this one out. Today was a good day. It didn’train, it was relatively warm, there was hardly any other boats on the river, and the fellowship was great.

I enjoy fishing very much so I fish every chance I get and as often as I can. Why? Because I enjoy the challenge of catching fish. Fishing is the activity, catching is the reward. I enjoyed today because the challenge and the reward are intact, but if I went fishing 20 times and caught no fish the reward would be gone and the challenge as well, and I would quit fishing.

I ride my stationary bike most nights for an hour because the health benefits are real and measurable. I read my Bible every day and memorize and meditate on scripture because of the huge rewards that come into my life for that activity. Identifying the rewards in life helps us prioritize our activities in life and to stay motivated.

Going Fishing

I am getting up in the morning at 4:00 am to go steelhead fishing on the Siletz River. It is now 10:00 pm and I need to go to bed so I get some sleep, but I don’t have everything done yet! I need to write this blog, ride my stationary bike and read my Bible. I just preached tonight about reading the Bible so I shouldn’t skip that, but my brain is starting to sputter and I keep falling asleep as I am writing this. Oops I fell asleep with my thumb on the keyboard and everything I wrote got erased, oooooh I have to write it all over again, but I can’t remember what I wrote, ok just start over and think, and don’t fall asleep! OK, I am going to skip the bike tonight and just read 5 chapters in Psalms and call it good. Hey, I will make you all a deal, we will call this good enough for this blog tonight, and I will put a picture in tomorrow’s blog of my steelhead that I catch. Good night!

Pressure, Busy, Tired

Certain bigger events that happen occasionally or even annually pop up and scrunch what is usually a comfortable routine of responsibilities into a hectic, busy, and pressure-packed week. Last week it was the “Leadership Seminar” that we did all day Monday and Tuesday, taking a normal five-day workweek and cramming it into three. This week it is an all day steelhead fishing trip on the Siletz River. 😀😁😇Next week I and most of the staff are going to Cannon Beach for a “Pastor’s Prayer Summit.” The week after that is the “Five Days of Prayer.” Man, when will I ever have time to work on my 1969 Mustang!? Even though the pressure of occasional events that mess up routines and schedules doesn’t happen every week, they are certainly not occasional.

So, as you have heard me say many times and read in this blog dozens of times, “it is all in the self-talk.” If we say to ourselves, “ Darn I am so busy, and there is so much stress, and I am so tired,” we will very effectively have made ourselves miserable, tired, and stressed out. But instead, we can train ourselves to say to ourselves, “I love variety instead of being bored with regular routine stuff all the time.” “ This week is like the playoffs in football, time to see what I am made of, I am going to win!” “It is sure a blessing to be used by the Lord, instead of being put on the bench, just because I am old!” “Busy is good!” “Tired, the best feeling in the world!” “I love my life, thank You, Lord!”

The main point of this blog is don’t let your flesh turn you into a whiny wimp, but choose to make your flesh your slave, doing what you want

You Fool

The book of Proverbs in the Old Testament has a lot to say about wisdom and how to get it. It also has a lot to say about being a fool, how you become a fool, what fools do, and the consequences in this life for being a fool. Here are a few of the many verses in the book of Proverbs that describe a fool.

Proverbs 3:35 But fools display dishonor.

Proverbs 1:7 Fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 10:8 But a babbling fool will be ruined.

Proverbs 10:18 And he who spreads slander is a fool.

Proverbs 12:15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes,
But a wise man is he who listens to counsel.

Proverbs 13:20 He who walks with wise men will be wise,
But the companion of fools will suffer harm.

Proverbs 14:9 Fools mock at sin,

Proverbs 14:16 But a fool is arrogant and careless.

Proverbs 15:2 But the mouth of fools spouts folly.

Proverbs 18:2 A fool does not delight in understanding,
But only in revealing his own mind.

Proverbs 18:7 A fool’s mouth is his ruin,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.

Proverbs 20:3 Keeping away from strife is an honor for a man,
But any fool will quarrel.

Proverbs 28:26 He who trusts in his own heart is a fool,

I read one chapter in Proverbs every day and because there are 31 chapters in Proverbs I get through it every month. As I read I highlight in a variety of colors different topics in Proverbs. I have a color for wisdom, for the mouth and the tongue, for diligence and laziness, a color for finances, for anger, and for fools and scoffers, and that is six colors, all my Bible App has!

When I start acting or talking like a fool verses start popping into my mind that are very effective in getting me to stop what I am doing and think. There isn’t much worse than an old fool.

Football

I was feeling kinda blue today. My favorite NFL team lost yesterday, the Jacksonville Jaguars. My favorite sports teams are usually my favorite based on my favorite players, and my favorite players are my favorites because of their faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, and who aren’t shy about saying so. Trevor Lawerence was my favorite player so now I have to go to my second favorite player who’s team is still alive in the playoffs. I have a tie for my second favorite player based on their testimonies for Jesus, Patrick Mahomes for the Chiefs who is the team that beat the Jaguars and Christian McCaffrey who is a running back for the 49’ers, who beat the Cowboys today. So I think I will go with Christian McCaffrey because I am pretty sure the 49ers are going to win the Super Bowl. Though I ran across an on-line polling site of 100 Christian NFL players, and Patrick Mahomes was first place in the number of votes received.

I Googled “Christian NFL players” and I was surprised by the high number of professional football players that are strong Christians. It was very encouraging to see the number who share their faith unashamedly and who use their millions of dollars to support or create ministries that help others in a variety of ways.

Probably the weakest area of the average born-again Christian in the United States is their timidity when it comes to sharing their faith in Christ as a witness for Him. The timidity seems to be, most of the time, a fear of what people will think of them. It seems strange to me that people would attempt to be popular by being silent about their belief in Jesus.

Builder

I spent most of today and last Saturday working at JBC on remodeling our old racquetball court into a chapel for our kid’s ministries. Six other guys were working with me, or a more accurate way to put it is that I was working with six other guys because they did most of the work. I can’t do much real work now, but I can do some and have a great time doing it. Some of my most enjoyable times as a pastor over the last 47 years have been the building projects we have had. They have been enjoyable because I like building, but primarily because of the reward of seeing many people working together in unity with a common goal in mind. We now have a lot of very practical, usable, and beautiful facilities that are all paid for and built mostly by volunteers. We don’t have any more room to build new buildings, so we are now remodeling the old ones.

God is the creator of everything, and Jesus is now building our Kingdom home. We are created in the image and likeness of God so we like to create, to build, and to make new things. Building buildings out of wood is fun, but now, more than ever, I like to build people, to develop them, to train, coach and motivate them to be great servants of God, doing amazing things with their life.

I pray every day and ask God to give me more and more opportunities to serve Him and to teach, coach and train disciples for Jesus.

Writing Help

I have this App that helps me out on my blog. It changes misspelled words, punctuation mistakes, and poor grammar and picks what it thinks are better words and word order. But I try to check all the changes it makes because some I don’t like or agree with. I have tried to develop a style of writing that is a cross between a farm boy, a fisherman, a hunter, and a grumpy old man, so my writing App often makes changes that are too “nice.” I usually catch those when I go back and reread what I have written before I hit “publish.” but reading today what I wrote last night, I see a change that was made that I didn’t catch, which could be a significant blow to my reputation! I wrote “Patty and I had a super time” at dinner last night, but the App changed it to “Patty and I had a lovely time.” You have got to be kidding me! the word “lovely” is not in my vocabulary!

A bunch of guys from JBC went to a men’s retreat several years ago, and we all snickered under our breath and rolled our eyes at each other repeatedly during the guest speaker’s message. He used the words “lovely,” “precious,” and “marvelous” often. So if you ever see any of those words in my blog, you will know that it was that stupid App at it again.

We talk to each other and to God in words, our best thinking is done in words, the Bible has been preserved for us over thousands of years in written words, and we write in words. We choose words and string them together to make thoughts, sentences, paragraphs, and whole stories. Some words and sentences have almost supernatural power to build-up, to encourage, and to give love. Other words have as much power to tear down and to destroy.

Proverbs 16:24
Pleasant words are a honeycomb,
Sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

Proverbs 16:27
A worthless man digs up evil,
While his words are like scorching fire.

It is too bad that I can’t get an App that would check the words that I am going to speak out of my mouth; wow, that would save me a lot of grief.

Ephesians 4:29
Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear.

Have a lovely day!