Enjoying the Journey

Have you sent out your Christmas cards yet? Through the years it has become increasingly difficult to send cards to everyone that we love and want to greet. For the last several years we have simply given cards to family and send greetings by media and email to many others. However you may send your Christmas greetings I would like to give you an idea for those that you receive. Tammy and I always enjoy looking through the Christmas cards and family pictures that come in the mail each year. (Let’s be honest, with all of the technology, we still enjoy getting actual mail in the mailbox!) Perhaps you display them for a few days, but what do you do…

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A few nights ago I had the privilege after a meeting to spend some time with a group of young preachers. We had a wonderful conversation on a range of subjects. Near the end of the evening one of the young men asked how I chose what I was going to read. My answer was that I primarily relied on good recommendations from people I trust. It is impossible to read everything – and probably not wise! I enjoy reading widely and appreciate the helpful recommendations from trusted people. Recently I have been asked to review three books that were written by friends. It was my privilege to do so and I am happy to recommend them to you. They…

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This week I had the privilege of speaking in a special seminar on the Christian home. The people in attendance were young and old, single and married, people with children and grandchildren. It was a reminder to me that there are seasons of life and family, and at every season we need God’s wisdom! If anyone tells you they have a perfect family…run! Sometimes those who look like they have it all together are coming apart at the seams. There are no perfect families because we are all sinners. I have a long way to go as a husband and father, but I am grateful to God for my family and want to become more of what He wants me…

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Mobile devices and on-demand media have changed our world forever. More specifically, they have changed our families and our lives. Homes no longer revolve around a big screen in the living room, but around little screens in our hand. That is a greater danger now than ever. As we spend less time with people there is a tendency to spend more time engaged with technology. Perhaps you have noticed your “screen time” is up a little lately. Here are a few practical ideas for controlling your technology and your time: Refuse to reach for your device first in the morning. Speak to God and others before you allow your thoughts to be consumed by online interactions and information. Turn your…

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Did you know that the word “quarantine” actually comes from an Italian word that has biblical roots? It means 40 days – a reference to the 40 days of purification and the 40 day testings found throughout the Scriptures. While the immediate purpose is medical and physical in nature, I believe that God is using this quarantine to both test and purify His people. This extended period will prove to be a time of purging both for churches corporately and Christians personally. Some will fall away, but, God willing, many will draw nearer to Christ. What will this quarantine do for you? “Redeeming the time” is not a matter of busyness or activity – it is a matter of emphasis…

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If you are a teenager I am quite sure that your social life has been disrupted and your school year has been less than you imagined. (Or perhaps, better than you imagined – depending on your perspective!) After a few days at home most young people begin to get bored. Maybe you are way past that. First let me say, join the club. We are all a little stir crazy. The truth is that throughout life there will be things that disappoint and interrupt. The sooner you can learn to accept and adapt to these changes the better your whole life will be. Please do not think that I am minimizing the impact that COVID-19 has had on your life.…

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The term has been lost with the passing of time – and so has the use. Few people today think much about a “family altar.” Yet in days of revival in our nation the principle of families praying and worshiping together was vital. True revival does not start at the church house, it starts at our house! The family altar does not mean that we build a physical altar in our homes. It means that we build into our schedules and routines the priority of praying with the family and talking about the Lord. The home altar is greater than the church altar in this way: it can be accessed every day! Matthew Henry wrote, “Wherever man has a tent,…

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Many of us are spending a little more time at home these days! The worldwide pandemic and resulting restrictions have cut down on travel, meetings, school, and a host of other “normal” activities. Most are suffering some degree of withdrawal from the lack of sporting events and simultaneous overexposure to news media. Now we are to keep six feet away from one another! Like many things in life, every negative can be a positive. After terrible circumstances Joseph declared, “…ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good” (Genesis 50:20). Paul explained it this way: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to…

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We all want someone to blame. When things go wrong in life – and they inevitably do – it is human nature to point the finger at someone else who failed to do their part. Typically the person who bears the greatest blame is the leader. That is true in a family, in a church, and in government. And while there is no doubt that leaders often fail it has become socially acceptable and sadly commonplace to put all blame on the man at the front. But is that always true? I heard a lady last week mockingly blame the failure of her marriage on the pastor who married she and her husband many years ago. He must not have…

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Is your Christmas shopping list complete? Christmas card lists, grocery lists, gift lists…tis the season for written reminders! What about your Christmas prayer list? At this time of year it is easy to grow overly introspective. In fact, that can even become selfishness. It is easy to fixate on your own family and contemplate only your own wants. A Christian Christmas will always consider others. The greatest gift you ever give is intercession. Your prayers can touch hearts and homes that you cannot even see. Here are a few suggestions for your Christmas prayer list… Pray through your Christmas cards. Take each card, note, picture, or gift as a prayer reminder for friends and family. “I thank my God upon…

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