Archive for November, 2015

Something is Different.

November 28th, 2015

“Something is different about you,” she said.  The comment caught me a little off guard, because when you are a pastor and you just finished preaching you never know what is on the other side of that comment. She continued “ You were spiritual before you got sick but now you are so much better” Before you think this is becoming self-serving let me explain. I spent some time in the hospital flat on my back recently but thats a story for another day.

She was right I am different but not because I have seen the light but because of the opposite, I seen the darkness to be more specific the blackness of my on sin. While in the hospital and while I was recovering I was unable to do most anything for my-self, I need help with everything, thank God for the people that God put around me, specially my wife and daughter. Wendy took care of me and Amber took care of the church and with the help of my leadership team everything just got done. FYI train your people then let them do it, that is just for free.

Anyway, when you are flat on you back you have the tendency to pray and read thats all I could do and it turns out to be a good thing. While I was down it was very convenient to look up and as I prayed and read God began to deal with me in some areas of my life, thing that needed to change. I took a long hard look at my life and came to the painful realization i had somethings that were taking my attention away from God, some areas that I’ve held back and that this illness could be a turning point in my life and ministry. Then I discovered this truth: There are somethings about God you can only learn from a crushing blow, there is something about being unable to function that will make you ask question you most likely have had the time to ask.

I am a sinful guy and God is holy, But until you can see your sin for what it is you can’t really understand the holiness of God. The prophet Isaiah had a experience after a crushing blow where he see’s God and is never the same again.

Isaiah 6:1-8 (NIV)

1  In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.

2  Above him were seraphs, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying.

3  And they were calling to one another: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”

4  At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.

5  “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”

6  Then one of the seraphs flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar.

7  With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”

8  Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”

I had seen the Lord, not the same way Isaiah did but as I read and prayed I saw the Lord high and lifted up and Just like Isaiah I thought to my-self I am doomed, Holy is He and sinful am I. Thank God the story doesn’t stop there, Jesus bridges to gap between  a Holy God and a sinful man and when you can see that, How can you say anything but

“Here I am Send ME”

The Apostle Paul wrote this not long before he gives his life for the gospel.

Philippians 3:12-14 (NIV)

12  Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.

13  Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,

14  I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Yes, I am different but not because of anything I’ve done, but because of what has been done for me. And that’s the way I see it in my market.

The Things I Do.

November 28th, 2015

One of the things I have noticed lately is there are a lot of choices. I mean internet, movies, shampoo, food, “Do you want fries with that?” and today I drove by a car lot and you could actually spend all day trying to figure out what kind of car to buy and then you have to choose the color. Everywhere you look there is an advertisement telling us the choice we should make, Just so you know Maddison Avenue does a great job  selling stuff ,but a poor job of helping me make good choices.

Get this and you get ? this is where you fill in the blank___________________.  And you can put a lot of things in the blank and the idea is they are selling  stuff that can make me happy and others like me, quite a challenge but the reality is stuff doesn’t really do that. Why would I say that? because every couple of days there is a new or new and improved version of the very thing that was suppose to make me happy and well liked. But it never turns out as good as I thought it would be. Sad, but true.

What if? We could make choices that really did bring not only happiness, but produced lasting satisfaction? That would be transformation at the level we have always dreamed of and I wouldn’t have to buy that funny smelling shampoo either. So what is the first step to that kind of a life?

                                                                     Jesus Christ

Philippians 3:12-14 (ESV)
12  Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.
13  Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,
14  I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

The Apostle Paul writes these words to the Church in Philippi from a Roman prison. I find it interesting that he says that he is “straining forward to what lies ahead” That would suggest that making right choices is difficult. I have said it before and now seams like a good time to say it again, “I didn’t start well, but I am determined to finish well” That my friends is a choice that we ALL can make and this is what it looks like for me.

I Choose to:

Laugh instead of crying.

Forgive instead of holding a grudge.

Love than to live in fear. To quote Dean, a friend of mine “I would rather be real than safe.” I love that.

Have faith instead of doubt.

Move forward instead of giving up.

Learn from the pain in my life instead of becoming bitter.

Seek understanding instead of ignorance.

Persevere in spite of difficult circumstances.

Have hope for something better.

To be honest when it would be easier to lie.

To try to do my best, than to make excuses.

I think that is the kind of “straining” that Paul was talking about and I believe that is the kind of life that honors God and it is the kind of life that God honors. We All have a choice to make and I would also say that we are living now with the choices we made yesterday. If you don’t like the life you are living now, make better choices today so that the life you have tomorrow will be better.


The best choice you can make to start the journey to your “New and Improved Life” is Choose Jesus Christ and then follow HIM wherever he Leads. And that is the way I see it in my market.

P.S. Jesus dosent remodel your old life, He completely destroys it. The promise is new life just so you know. 🙂