Saturday, July 15, 2017


Live for the future

Brothers and sisters,
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,
Philippians 3 verse 13

I about an hour a 37 year old Venus Williams will play in the Wimbledon tennis finals. In response to how she did it with all the distractions in her life, her answer prompted me to write! She said that she looks toward the future rather than dwelling on the past! That is a great way to live!

Here is a summary of her major issues: In September 2003 her half-sister and personal assistant was murdered. In 2011 she was diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome an auto immune disease. Last month she was in a fatal car crash in which a 79 year old man died. That is all heavy stuff.

We have all experienced events in our lives that we can dwell on. We can become depressed. A member of the retirement class at age 77, I admit it is hard to focus on the future. This week I spent time with my team of doctors working on an auto immune issue and my annual physical. Frankly I am not what I used to be but “I yam what I yam.” (Thanks Popeye). There is a future.

Thought for today: Focus on your future, live for today and for a better tomorrow! The lord is with you!

Prayer for Today: Dear lord and Father, thank you for the past, the events that have made me what I am today. We pray for a bright future with ultimate prize of everlasting life.

Saturday, July 8, 2017


Anxiety and Faith

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition,
with Thanksgiving, present your requests to God"
(Philippians 4:6)

            Stress is becoming an American, if not a World wide tradition; part of our life style. We often go through our week wound up like a rubber band that has been twisted tighter and tighter. However, we all recognize that the rubber band eventually breaks. When it is wound too tight or stressed too long, it snaps! We are certainly a higher life form than a rubber band, however are we similar when stressed.
            We have a way of unwinding during the most stressed of times. Mine is by writing "Good News" to people that I love. Yours may be different- exercise, meditation, a chat with a friend, reading. There are many ways to release stress. In Paul's writings in Philippians 4: 8 & 9 he suggests that Faith is a tool to help us.
 "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right,
whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—
if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—
put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you."
Focus for Today: Today let us focus selfishly on ourselves. Let's feel the peace and presence of God in our lives. When the "stress monster" wants to control our lives, let's read this passage and let "the peace of God" into our lives. As Christians we deserve peace.
Prayer for Today:  Heavenly father, the world seems to be a breeding ground for stress. Every where we look there is something to worry about; terror, hate, employment troubles, stock market woes- even severe weather. This week we pray that we may keep you and peace in our thoughts, that we have the presence of mind to make wise choices and release our stresses to find tranquility.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Indepemdence Day!

Independence Day

"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.
Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves
be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
(Galatians 5:1)

            Independence is what makes America great and our many freedoms make this a great place to live. Our constitution is based on our ability to self govern. Below is what James Madison, our fourth President, had to say about our system.

"We have staked the whole of all our political Institutions upon the capacity of mankind for Self-Government, the capacity of each and all of us to govern ourselves, to control ourselves, to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God."

Pray about where we were then and where we are now.

Thought for Today: Today let’s celebrate our independence by obeying the Lord’s commandments.

Prayer for Today: Dear Lord and Father, our country celebrates its independence. Our freedoms are based on your laws and our abilities to obey them. Today we pray for spiritual growth, honesty, integrity and ethics.


Sunday, July 2, 2017


As Christians we need to find a way to spread peace in our lives and around the world.
“Peace I leave with you;
my peace I give you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
(John 14 vs. 27)
Peace is something that the world’s religions teach and somehow we humans manage to mess it up. In our Christian sense if we could ask the old question “What would Jesus do?” we would not go to war. Hymns like Onward Christian soldiers and The Battle Hymn of the Republic would not have been written. That is the reality of our world.
Last week I was talking to a currier who has given up travelling to several cities because they were too dangerous. There was drug activity and a lack of control exhibited. The company he worked for initiated a policy that for every unsafe city you give up you had to yield a safe city. Yah, fat chance that you can find a safe city! You see there are more curriers than cities and it is a dangerous job.
The fact of life is peace is something that needs to be from within because bad things happen to good people everywhere; down the street, in the home as well as when travelling. We need to bring our faith and our prayers with us.
As believers we need to contribute to the other side of the balance sheet. There are three important contributions we are taught to make daily. First we need to pray for our enemies, the bad guys; crooks, burglars, terrorists and the whole lot. Pray that they can find a better way through the Lord. Second we need to pray for our safety and happiness. We need to run our lives confidently and without fear. Third we need to give thanks for the opportunities given us to contribute.
We live in a world of differences. We need to live and set the example for others and ask WWJD!
Thought for Today: For today let us exercise the freedom afforded to us through Christ. Let us not be critical of others and demonstrate our love as we do our daily activities.
Prayer for Today: Heavenly Father, today we simply pray for a lasting peace.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Raising Expectations

Raising Expectations

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ,
set your hearts on things above,
where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.
Set your minds on things above,
not on earthly things.”
(Colossians3, 1&2; NIV)

            We have talked a bit about how the head and heart lead our bodies. How often our thoughts may be negative and they can lead us into depression. Let’s face it, when we read or listen to the news, they talk mostly about negative events. However, most of what goes on in the world is positive. We need to focus on that!
            Remember the words to the old song. “When you’re down and out, lift up your head and shout, It’s going to be a great day.” We are often confronted with the local curmudgeon, the person who finds fault with everything. Let’s face it, they are right, it is always too hot or too cold! Too rainy or their lawn needs watering! Things are too expensive! Coffee is too weak or strong! Pray for them, they need us.
            We will have negative influences in our lives. As we move through our daily lives, we are blessed with the tools to deal with the negative side.  I read this on a sign in front of a local church recently, “The Lord does not guarantee us smooth passage, just a safe landing.” It is up to use our Christian tools to stay positive and be happy.

Thought for Today: Today we will have to deal with negative issues. Let us turn them into a positive experience by dealing with them promptly. When we encounter some that seem to linger and not go away, let us remember to turn those over to God through prayer.

Prayer for Today: Today is the day you have made for us. Unfortunately the roads have bumps and there are unknown troubles out there awaiting us. Today we pray that your presence will guide us through the tough moments and that we may accomplish our goals in your name.


Saturday, June 17, 2017

God is With Us!

God is with us

"Now Moses was a very humble man,
more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth"
(Numbers 12:3)

         Like Moses, we are not always enthusiastic about what God wants. We are a humble lot, conservative and considerate of others views and feelings. Almost to a fault. We are humble before God.
        However, in our lives we are often asked to perform tasks that require an assertive posture. Many of us are leaders in the community, at work and at church. We are often leaders that require strength while still being humble. That is a great leader.
   God's response to Moses was "...I will be with you." and he will be with us always.
        When you are feeling hesitant and inferior, God says, "I will be with you."
        When you are wondering if you can make it another day with the job stress, He says, "I will be with you."
        When you're faced with a tough decision and wondering what to do, He says, "I will be with you."
        When you are experiencing great joy, God is with you.
        You may be a bit reluctant, as was Moses, but we need to remember that as we go through life, God is with us always.
Thought for Today: Today we need to remember that we are not alone. Through our faith we have help meeting our obligations. Let us take control of situations in a humble manner and allow ourselves to be led through the tasks ahead.
Prayer for Today: Dear Lord and Father we thank you for being with us. We are often confused in a world of activity. Often when things go well, we feel that we controlled the situation. We pray that we can recognize your involvement in our everyday lives and have the forethought to give you thanks through our actions and prayers.

Saturday, June 10, 2017


“Who is wise and understanding among you?
Let him show it by his good life,
by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.
(James 3:13)

        One of my recurring themes is that we are all ministers of the Gospel. Within our individual congregations we hire ordained ministers to lead and teach us as we move forward on our spiritual journeys. Sometimes we catch ourselves in the Sunday only mode.         
        A very dear friend of June's and mine is in spiritual crises. For whatever reason faith has left and bouts of depression have occurred. It is probably not coincidental. For Christians, there is a strong tie between our faith and our inner peace. When our faith is doubtful we take control of things. We forget to "Let go and let God".
        As Christians, we need to demonstrate our inner peace to others. Show our caring spirits and our love. Not on Sunday but every day in every activity. Our ministry needs to be subtle, persistent and very public. When we function in a very Christian and public way, people in doubt will come to us.

Thought for Today: Today let us demonstrate our inner peace to all we meet. Let us look for opportunity to talk about our tranquility and our faith. Let us offer to share with others. 

Prayer for Today: Dear Lord, there are many great events that are masked by tragedy. Today we pray that somehow we as Christians may find a way to contribute. That we may have our prayers answered with a lasting miracle. We all need an end to hate and hateful decisions; we pray for world peace.