Happy Thanksgiving

November 25, 2015 — Leave a comment

I have so much to be grateful for.  Sometimes, it’s so easy to take our blessings for granted.

I pray that our hearts would overflow with thanksgiving for the many ways that God has blessed us.

Johnson Oatman, the hymn writer, urged us to count our blessings and to name them one by one.  I have listed some of mine below.  How about you?  Care to share in the comments some of your blessings?


I am especially grateful for:

  • making it through another year.
  • the chance to finish and publish a book–with the help of many friends and family.
  • my family and the chance to be together to celebrate God, life, and each other.
  • friends (both from
  • the chance to serve as an Intentional Transitional Minister and help prepare a church for their next Senior Pastor.
  • the chance to serve as a Marketing Coordinator for by design ministries.
  • opportunities to write or teach knowing that God might choose to bless someone through my ministry.
  • the prospects of what God has in store for the next twelve months.
  • YOU.  Thank you for reading, liking, and sharing posts, tweets and status updates throughout the year.

Photo credit:  DepositPhotos.com 54943239 by PixelsAway

A lot of people find spending time in prayer particularly challenging. They carve out some time. They muster up all their self-discipline and courage, get on their knees, and then say, “OK, what do I do now?!”

Personally, I have often found it helpful to have a variety of resources available to help me stay focused during prayer. I share this not because I am a spiritual giant. Rather, I often find it such a struggle to stay focused in prayer that I have had to discover or develop tools to help.

I have found three resources, or methods, immensely helpful in developing confidence and consistency in my own prayer life. In this book. I weave all three of those methods together for a powerful combination in Time with God: Develop Confidence and Consistency
in Your Personal Prayer Life.

Time with God Book Cover

This book is designed to serve as a resource to help us grow closer to God and to build confidence and consistency in our personal prayer lives. Primarily, we need to remember that prayer is simply spending time with God. Unfortunately, we can complicate it so much that we get confused, insecure, bored, or distracted. Continue Reading…

The Supreme Court delivered another major decision today. Some of my friends will be Partying like it’s 1999 and other friends will be thinking “It’s the End of the World as We Know It”. What an opportunity to Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

Matt Wade's Picture of the U.S. Supreme Court

By UpstateNYer (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

  • To those who are celebrating, may you enjoy your new freedom to move around the country and the rights that accompany it. Please be patient with those who will be processing what this will mean in the long term. I’ve seen people in both camps voice concerns over the impact.
  • To those who mourn today, my other friends, who are wondering how this decision will affect your ministries or churches, can I share a few thoughts?

Continue Reading…

Thank You Dads

June 21, 2015 — Leave a comment

I just want to say Thank You to you guys who are in the game.

You may not feel like the Best Dad Ever, but you are the one who builds into those young lives every day.

You may not be the coolest Dad on the planet, but love covers a multitude of uncoolness (my paraphrase).

Thank you Dad.  Thank you for all you do.

We need you.

We appreciate you.

Picture of kids saying Thank You

(Note: Today’s post is written by Kelly O’Dell Stanley, the author of Praying Upside Down, which releases today, May 1, published by Tyndale Hose Publishers.)

I don’t know about you, but my favorite way to pray is upside down.

I’m in good company. Jesus constantly surprised his followers—and critics—with His unexpected answers. Jesus always challenged the status quo. He looked beyond the surface and wasn’t afraid to flip things around.

One Sunday morning when my son, Bobby, was six, he left our pew and walked straight to the front of the church, up the steps onto the platform, right in the middle of our worship. Pastor Nathan was sitting in a chair off to the side, putting the finishing touches on his sermon notes. Bobby circled around the worship leader, ignored the musicians, and climbed into the seat next to Nathan. With a sigh, he leaned back and then scooted to the edge of the chair. The big smile and hug Nathan gave him weren’t a surprise—Nathan had taught all the children that they were always welcome to come up front. That day, as I watched through tears, I finally understood the beauty of having direct access to God. Knowing that He welcomes me, and you, with joy. No matter who’s watching.


This must be what Jesus meant when He spoke to the adults who tried to shoo the children out of the way. Continue Reading…


The coward seeks release from pressure.

The courageous pray for strength.

–Frances J. Roberts

I wait for the Lord, with bated breath I wait; I long for His Word! 
Psalm 130:5 MEV

Do not let sin be the boss of you!

You are not under law but under grace.

I felt led to focus on and paraphrase this verse (Romans 6:14) after reading today’s Our Daily Bread devotional.  Bill Crowder writes:

As my wife was babysitting our two young grandsons, they began to argue over a toy. Suddenly, the younger (by 3 years) forcefully ordered his older brother, “Cameron, go to your room!” Shoulders slumped under the weight of the reprimand, the dejected older brother began to slink off to his room when my wife said, “Cameron, you don’t have to go to your room. Nathan’s not the boss of you!” That realization changed everything, and Cam, smiling, sat back down to play.

Having heard my own kids (and others) occasionally use that phrase, “You’re not the boss of me!”, somehow Mrs Crowder’s words added new relevance to old familiar verses.  If we have indeed trusted in Christ’s work on the cross on our behalf, then sin does not have power over us any longer–unless we give it control over us.  When the Apostle Paul says, “Therefore, do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires.” he is actually telling us, “Do not let sin be the boss of you!”  Try to read these familiar verses with that in mind.  You can add a little attitude if it helps.

Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.  For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.

–Romans 6:12-14 (NIV)

The next time you feel temptation growing within, just let it know, “Sin, you are not the boss of me!”

Help for Writers

December 16, 2014 — Leave a comment

Although, I have much to learn, I’d like to share with you some of the influences that have helped me tremendously in my own writing and I’m sure will be a great help to you wherever you may be in your own development as a writer.  I especially wanted to let you know about an online course that is currently accepting new students.

Photo:  Leszekglasner Deposit Photos 18383043

Photo: Leszekglasner Deposit Photos 18383043

About a year ago, I began sensing that God was leading me in a new direction. I wasn’t sure what that direction would look like or where He would lead, but I stepped out in faith. As some time passed, I began to realize that writing would somehow play a part in that future direction.

I had developed a particularly meaningful and well-received sermon over the years and thought that might form the basis for a book. The thought was equally exciting and terrifying! As I started to develop the thought, I realized that although I had written some articles over the years, I had never entertained the thought of actually writing a book! After all, just reading a book took some effort for me. (I remember John Trent one time remarking that “I’ve written more books than I’ve read.”)

So, I knew nothing at all about writing a book, I set out to learn as much as I could. Continue Reading…

Thank You Veterans

November 11, 2014 — Leave a comment

Thank you for serving!

Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened.

– Billy Graham

We wouldn’t be who we are today without the brave sacrifice of so many who have served, protected and preserved the peace we enjoy today.

Thank You For Serving

By the way, here’s a link to a number of freebies or discounts from merchants who also appreciate your service. http://www.military.com/veterans-day/veterans-day-military-discounts.html

(Please note this is just posted as a public service and is not necessarily intended as an endorsement of any of the links contained.  However, I do appreciate and applaud those businesses who seek to honor our vets)