Enjoying the Journey

Personal Growth

How To Make This The Greatest Summer Of Your Life

Today is the official beginning of summer. Students will tell you that summer begins the moment they are out of school. For adults, summer doesn’t seem to begin until you leave work for that first day of vacation. It means something different to everyone but almost everyone (except for pastors!) will tell you they love this time of year. Summer is one of the most anticipated and one of the most wasted seasons of the whole year. The warm months are often a time of sloth and spiritual retreat when they could be an opportunity for growth. The vacation mentality too easily permeates every part of our life and instead of rest we retreat. Fast-forward three months from today…Where do you…

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The Difference Between Faithfulness And Routine

“Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful” (1 Corinthians 4:2). We all want to be faithful…but what does that mean? Faithfulness is not a schedule; it is a spirit. There are many people who are present but not present. Fathers who are at home but not really with their family. Church members who are in the meetings but not truly engaged. Preacher’s who are going through the motions but have lost heart. There is a difference between faithfulness and mere routine. Vance Havner once observed, “A rut is just a grave with both ends knocked out of it!” Routines can become ruts. Ruts are death. Here is the real issue: faithful to what? Many a…

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Just For Preachers

I love preachers. It was my privilege to grow up in a pastor’s home. For eighteen years I served under a faithful pastor. Now, it is my opportunity each week to spend a great deal of time with preachers across the country. One thing I know to be true: God’s men need times of refreshing and encouragement. The battle is fierce. Flesh is weak. Demands are great. And only the Lord can give strength to press on. Vance Havner was famous for saying, “If we don’t come apart we will come apart.” His comment was based on our Lord’s words to His own disciples in Mark 6:31, “Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for…

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The Most Important Characteristic of A Staff Member

For nearly two decades I had the joy of serving on the staff of a wonderful church and college. After the first few years I had the responsibility of not only being a staff member but also having staff who answered to me. I told someone recently that I learned more about serving on a staff after having the opportunity of supervising others! I truly tried to be a help to the man I served under but I am sure in my youth I made a host of mistakes. Thank God for patient leaders! Now, as an evangelist, I have the privilege of spending time with staff members in many churches. Just last week I enjoyed a lunch meeting with…

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A Story That Changed The Way I Look At The Bible

Below is one of the longest posts I have ever made and yet it will be one of the most enjoyable reads. As a college student, learning to learn, I was introduced to an old story that made a powerful impression on my life. It has helped me to study, to think, to meditate, to look. Though the setting of the story is not a Christian one, the principles found in it will help you to become a better student of Scripture. Take the time to read it and you will never read your Bible the same again… It was more than fifteen years ago that I entered the laboratory of Professor Agassiz, and told him I had enrolled my…

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Lincoln’s Letter: April 7, 1865

In just a few days Lincoln would “belong to the ages.” His life, like the Civil War, was soon to end. The final stages of battle were underway. Lincoln has always been my favorite president. On my desk are two volumes of Lincoln’s letters and speeches from 1832-1865. From time to time I enjoy seeing what Lincoln wrote or spoke on a particular day. On the closing pages I have found an amazing entry. They are words written only eight days before his race was finished. In it is more than a message for his favorite general. Here we find a message for us all… Head Quarters Armies of the United States City-Point, Lieut Gen. Grant.        …

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Truths for Travelers: Lessons Learned On the Road

As many of you know I spend a good deal of time on the road. Another frequent traveler, the Apostle Paul, once wrote, “all things are yours” (1 Corinthians 3:21-22). F.B. Meyer observed that everything is God’s classroom and serves to teach me something. Sitting in a hotel room recently I began to make a list of some of the truths the Lord is patiently teaching me. God is the same everywhere. The omnipresent God is not bound by geography. I am never alone. I never check into a hotel alone or board a plane by myself. Christ is my constant Companion and He has promised, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5). The family of God…

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Why I Was Wrong About Reading Fiction

For many years I almost prided myself in not reading fiction. “I read real stories.” Some time ago I was given a work of Christian fiction to read. As I read the book I came to a stark realization… I was wrong about reading fiction. Now, like any other genre of books, all fiction is not created equal. Much of it is a waste of time. However, well-written fiction can be a powerful tool in teaching the truth. Even Christ often used parabolic language to convey eternal truth. Specifically, I believe there can be a great deal of benefit in historical fiction. One definite caution that I would give regarding “Christian fiction” is that we must be wary of authors…

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My Shortest Post Ever – 2 Words to Help You Today

This is the time of year when so many people become sluggish. Schedules are hectic. The newness of the new year has worn off and the freshness of spring has not yet arrived. Weather is wearying. Illness is rampant. Christmas vacation has long since vanished and summer vacation seems far in the distance. For all of you who have such thoughts and feelings (like we all do at times!) I share two simple words: PRESS ON. That’s it. Sometimes the greatest thing you do is simply put one foot in front of another. Be faithful. As the old retired marine in our church used to say, “Stay at your post of duty.” PRESS ON. God has His eye on you.…

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The Power of a Name Remembered

It has been said that the most beautiful word in the English language is your own name. Even if you don’t care for the name you have been given, it means a great deal when others care enough to use it. Everyone loves to be known. To be acknowledged. Several months ago I was having a meal in a restaurant with a pastor. The owner of the establishment came by the table to say hello. My friend was a regular and kindly introduced me to the restaurant owner. It was a very brief introduction and our meal went on. Nearly an hour later as we were leaving I heard a voice behind me, “It was nice to meet you, Scott.…

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