Thoughts from Pastor Randy…

Grow and Show

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Jesus Talk

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Praying on Street Corner

“Let love be genuine.” Romans 12:9a

Have you ever been around someone who says they love you, but for some reason it just doesn’t seem like it is real? Something about them just doesn’t seem to match up. Unfortunately, I think this happens with Christians all the time. The world has Christians under a microscope. And for good reason too! The world knows that if Christians are going to live the way they are supposed to, their words and actions should be consistent. And that is what Paul is getting at in this verse when he tells us the Romans that their love should be genuine, or sincere. One of the worst things a Christian can do is talk about Jesus’ love and then not have real love themselves for people.

The people around you; your neighbors, people in the grocery story, people at the restaurant, your co-workers; they need to know the love of God by knowing what He did to pay the price for their souls. The best way to show this, is for you to grow and show your love for them!

My encouragement for us this week: Grow and Show Your Love for People!

But, don’t forget, at some point we need to talk to people about Jesus. It’s a nice idea to say that we can just show them through our actions, but to effectively reach people for Jesus, it will take both our actions and our words. Real love is shown through a consistency between our words and our actions.

Ps. Here are two steps you can take to grow your love for people.

  1. Pray and ask God to grow your love for people (it worked for me!)
  2. Listen to teachings about how to treat people  (start with Five things I know about people – John Maxwell)

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



New Schools!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Marriage and Family

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Dewater 4

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” Acts 1:8

Well…though we moved here a couple months ago, it feels as though the new journey begins, again, today. My boys started at their new schools today. It may seem like a little thing to some, but starting over in a new town, at a new school, with new friends, new teachers, new sights, new smells… it can be overwhelming.

For me, after three months, I haven’t settled into a daily routine that I am happy with yet, there are some very challenging things happening in ministry (good things too!), but… God is good!

A couple weeks ago, I took my family away for a few nights to have time together before the school year started. We played together, we prayed together, and we spent a couple hours each day in God’s Word together. I felt strongly that I needed to help my family be prepared for another start in this journey. As head of the household, it is my responsibility to help my family connect with God.

The verse above stuck out to me recently. It’s a reminder to me that God has me and my family here for a specific purpose; to be His witnesses! When the Holy Spirit comes upon us, He gives us power to be His witnesses, even when we are in a new town, new schools, new job, new everything.

You and your family may be going through some challenging things right now, or some new circumstances that are uncomfortable. Don’t lose sight of the fact that God is still wanting to give you His power to be His witness through whatever circumstances you find yourself in today. You may be thinking right now, “I thought his Jesus Talk blog was on Monday’s?” They are! This is my marriage and family blog. Being witnesses for Jesus is for the whole family! The question is, what are you doing to facilitate your family having the Holy Spirit come upon them?

My encouragement for us this week: Build times into your family’s schedule to seek God together so that the Holy Spirit can give you His power to be His witnesses! Sharing Jesus is the responsibility of every Christian no matter what their age. 

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”] Ephesians 5:22-33 [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Discovering Your Spouse” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%176%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.flagpage.com/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



That’s Not PC!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Jesus Talk

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Praying on Street Corner

“Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.” Psalm 1:5-6

Do you ever get tired of allowing culture to dictate the things that you talk about? Have you spent much time thinking about what would happen if ‘PC’ went out the window and people started talking more about the wicked and the righteous? It’s a pretty big deal… Maybe we should start talking more about it.

Wicked and Righteous….what’s the difference? Think, wrong and right. One is wrong, one is right. Can you guess which one? You got it! But it’s not enough to just say, wicked people are wrong and righteous people are right. It has everything to do with a person’s relationship to God. A person is either in a right relationship with God or their relationship to God is wrong.

Wicked people get their identity from their sin. And, since the Bible says, “For the wages of sin is death”, therefore, “the wicked will not stand in the judgment” (Romans 6:23 & Psalm 1:5a). Meaning they don’t have a case because they have been judged already because they have not believed in Jesus (John 3:18). Therefore, the wicked have been judged already and the judgment will be the formal proceedings of their entrance into destruction, Hell.

Righteous people on the other hand get their identity from Jesus. Those that believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and trust in the work that He did on the cross are made righteous (Romans 519). Righteous people are those who have given their life over to Jesus. The righteous love Jesus, the wicked love themselves.

Why does it matter? Well,

Wicked people will live forever…

Righteous people will live forever…

The difference is… one will live with eternal suffering, one will live in eternal enjoyment.

Now, that’s not real ‘PC’… but it is something worth talking about because one day, people will not have a choice anymore…

My encouragement this week: Let’s start talking to people about the difference between the wicked and the righteous. Of course, this always needs to be done in a spirit of gentleness and respect (1 Peter 3:15).

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



How Are You Adding Value?

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Marriage and Family

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Dewater 4

“But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first” Revelation 2:4-5

Do you remember how you fell in love (or rather grew in love) for your spouse? Were you instantly attracted to his/her looks? Was it their humor? How about the way they interacted with others? What was it that caused you to love your spouse in the first place?

I use the above passage of scripture in wedding ceremonies. It is the perfect passage because it is speaking of a bride and her groom. The groom is Jesus and the bride in the passage is the church in Ephesus. Did you know that we (Christians) are the bride of Christ? Jesus says to His bride that she has left her first love (Him). Notice that His next words are NOT, ‘therefore I am going to leave you, hate on you, or speak poorly to you’. No! His very next words are, “Remember therefore from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first.” His words are encouraging His bride to remember the times of when she was growing in her love for Him. He goes on to encourage her to turn from her ways that caused her to get to this point and start doing what got her to the place of loving Him in the first place.

Two Self Assessments We Should Take from this Passage:

  1. Have you fallen from your love for Jesus?
  2. Have you fallen from your love for your spouse?

I recently listened to John Maxwell speak at a leadership conference. His main point for his time was, “Everyday, add value to people’s lives”. I am going to assume something. One of the things that caused you to love your spouse in the first place was that he/she added value to your life. Which, in turn caused you to want to add value to their life. A happy marriage results from two people striving to add value to each other’s life on a daily basis. I can try to add value to many people’s lives as I go through my day, but if I don’t add value to my wife’s life today, then I have not been the husband that God wants me to be.

“Do the deeds you did at first”… Both for your love for Jesus and for your love for your spouse! As you grow in your love for Jesus, you will also grow in love for your spouse!

My encouragement for us this week: Strive to add value to your spouse today, tomorrow, and the next day…. You will see your relationship grow!

Have a great week adding value to your spouse!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”] Ephesians 5:22-33 [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Discovering Your Spouse” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%176%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.flagpage.com/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



More KNOW, More TALK!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Jesus Talk

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Praying on Street Corner

“And many believed in Him there.” John 10:42

Have we given up on statements like this? Have we settled for bleak results in our Christianity? Or, are we ready to see people come to Jesus by the 10’s, 20’s, or 100’s?

‘It can’t happen!’ You say! Why not? We see statements like the scripture above many times in the Bible. Why can’t we see this happen in our day? What led the many to believe in Him right there, in that time? Let’s answer that.

Look at verse 41. It says, “And many came to Him and were saying, “While John performed no sign (miracle), yet everything John said about this man was true” (John 10:41). First of all, it says that John didn’t perform miracles. So, it’s not like John was doing tricks to help people know who Jesus was. But, what does it say? It says that John had been speaking about Jesus and that what he was speaking was true. And what was the result? “Many believed in Him”.

Two things that I get from that:

  1. I need to be talking to others about Jesus.
  2. I need to continue to fill my mind with what the Bible says about Jesus.

Can you imagine if everyone who claimed to be a Christian would actually do those two things? WOW!!! People would come to believe in Him by the 10’s, 20’s, even 100’s!

I know what you might be thinking. “Maybe Randy, but people are looking for proof these days and most Christians don’t know how to combat that.” To which I would reply. It’s not our job to prove Jesus. It’s our job to KNOW Him and TALK about Him to others. The MORE we KNOW Him, the MORE we will want to TALK about Him to others. Furthermore, the MORE Christians TALK about Jesus, the MORE Christians will want to get to KNOW Jesus.

My encouragement for us this week: Know Him more and talk about Him more. Think about how much you got to know Him and talk about Him last week. Then, make sure you try to get to know Him and talk about Him more this week.

Have a great week knowing Him and talking about Him! Let’s see MANY come to believe in Him!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”]

[/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”]

[/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”]

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”]

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



Don’t Just Silence The Alarm!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Marriage and Family

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Dewater 4

“Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God.” Revelation 3:2

Alarm Bells, Alarm Bells, Alarm Bells! I really don’t like alarm bells! My week began with driving into the church parking lot, getting out of my truck, thinking to myself, “that noise is different”. At first I wasn’t sure where it was coming from. But, as soon as I began walking closer to the church building, I quickly found that the noise was coming from inside the building. And, oh my was it NOISE! As uncomfortable as the noise was, I had to go into the building to check for smoke or fire, thankfully I didn’t find any. I finally found the silence button!

Alarm bells are for just what the name says. Alarm Bells (or other alarm horrible sounds) are designed to start in the case of emergency. Alarm bells are really, really good, because they tell you that something is wrong. On the other hand, alarm bells are really, REALLY annoying, uncomfortable, and sometimes feel unbearable. Regardless, alarm bells cause you to WAKE UP and do something about it.

Wouldn’t it be nice if we had alarm bells built into our relationships? If something was going wrong with our relationship with our spouse or our kids, an alarm went off and didn’t turn off until we did something about it. That would be really good. Unfortunately, I think to many people, like me, just find the silence button for the alarm and push it. The silence button doesn’t fix the problem; it only soothes the pain for the moment. In marriage and family life, all too often we are used to pushing the silence button, rather than taking the time to really work through the issues that are causing the problem in the first place. It’s really nice to have a silence button, but it’s even better to have fixed a strain in a relationship that will eventually lead to a fracture!

Here are some indicators that alarm bells may be ringing in your family:

  1. You or your spouse get angry with each other on a frequent basis…
  2. You haven’t had a date night with only your spouse for over a month…
  3. Your son or daughter is spending more time with friends or other activities than with you…
  4. You can’t have a conversation with your son/daughter without frustration…
  5. You can’t remember the last time your family has prayed together…

These indicators are not to condemn, but only to spur your thinking… The fact is, marriages and families are being torn apart every day because the silence button is being pushed repeatedly and the problems are not being worked on. My Encouragement for you this week: If you find that alarm bells are ringing and you are not sure what to do; follow the instructions from the verse above and then seek help from a healthy Christian who cares.

 

Disclaimer: The context of the verse above is Jesus speaking to the church in Sardis. The interpretation is not regarding marriage; I am just making application from this verse for marriage.

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”] Ephesians 5:22-33 [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Discovering Your Spouse” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%176%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.flagpage.com/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



God is Speaking!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Jesus Talk

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Praying on Street Corner

“Do homage to the Son, lest He become angry, and you perish in the way, for His wrath may soon be kindled. How blessed are all who take refuge in Him!” Psalm 2:12

Have you ever been asked about the people of the Old Testament? If Jesus came during the time of the New Testament and people have to place their faith in Him to be saved; what happens to the people who lived before Jesus came to the earth? This is a great question, though I will not give a full answer to that direct question in this blog. But, that question so easily leads us to another question like, did the people in the Old Testament know about Jesus? Did they know that God had a “only begotten Son” (John 3:16)?

Look again at the scripture above and ask yourself these questions: Who wrote this Psalm (see Acts 4:25)? Who is the author saying to “do homage” to?

The man who wrote Psalm 2 had an understanding about God and His Son. God was speaking through this man to reveal His Son. This is incredible! Nearly 1,000 years before Jesus was even born, this writer of Psalm 2 was exhorting others to revere the Son.  God is speaking! There is no other way for man to have known except through direct revelation from God!

You see, just because people lived before the birth of Jesus doesn’t mean that they were without knowledge of God and how He was going to save them. God, in His sovereignty, was revealing His Son by speaking through prophets of old so that the world would know who He was.

Let’s make sure that in our day, we allow God to use us to reveal who His Son is. As the Psalm goes, “How blessed are all who take refuge in Him!”.

My encouragement for us this week: Take refuge in Jesus and help all those you come across this week take refuge in Him as well!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



Building Words!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Marriage and Family

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Dewater 4

“Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, that is may give grace to those who hear.” Ephesians 4:29

One of the downfalls in me being a good husband is my mouth. I have said so many things over the years that hurt my wife. You would think that I could learn after the fifth or fiftieth time, but nope. There is just something that happens inside of me when I don’t get my way, or when I feel bad about a situation, or when I am angry over something that happened. Yes, something happens when I focus on… me. For me, most, if not all of my negative responses and words have come from me focusing on me. Talk about selfish! Talk about pride!

The scripture above is incredible! It is also very hard! Yet, if I as a husband would follow this every time I find myself getting ready to say a snide comment, I would not hurt my wife and our marriage would be happier. But that’s the problem, how can I follow it every time? I go back to the I. If I am focusing on myself, I will blow it every time and say things that are hurtful and destroying. But, if I focus on my wife (and the Word), I will better be able to see the right response that I should give so that I can build her up in that moment, rather than tear her down.

Divorce is a result of tearing each other down over a length of time. A happy and strong marriage is a result of building each other up over a length of time. Don’t think for a moment that you can’t achieve the latter. If you have spent most of your time tearing down, take action today towards spending all of your time in building up. It takes lots of work, but it is so worth it!

My encouragement for you this week: Say some words every day this week that build up your spouse!

Have a great week building your marriage!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”] Ephesians 5:22-33 [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Discovering Your Spouse” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%176%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.flagpage.com/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



Push Forward!

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Jesus Talk

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Praying on Street Corner

“And he will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers.” Psalm 1:3

Did you catch the last phrase of this verse!? It is an incredible statement! “in whatever he does, he prospers”. We would need to go back to the previous verse to understand the person who attains this, but in short, the person who “his delight is in the law of the Lord, and His law he meditates day and night.”

Have you ever felt like you can’t go on? Ever felt like you just can’t push forward? This verse is for you! The word ‘prospers’ doesn’t necessarily mean what our American western mind thinks it means. The Hebrew word for ‘prospers’ is tsalach; literally means ‘to push forward’. Wow! All of a sudden this has new meaning to someone like me who grew up in a culture that teaches that to prosper means that one has money, is happy, and successful in every way. To push forward sounds like not everything is perfect, but regardless of circumstances and outside situations, a person is able to keep going. I’ve got something in my life right now that I could just raise my hands and say, “I’m done”, but it is clear to me that God will give me what I need to continue to ‘push forward’ as long as I delight in Him by meditating on His word. How about you?

Let’s apply this to talking to people about Jesus. Yesterday, our church had a neighborhood BBQ at a park just a couple blocks away. It was a great time for both our church family and the 20-30 neighborhood people that joined us. At one point, I sat down next to four teenage guys and just started to get to know them. During the conversation, I started thinking about asking them if they had a relationship with God. I had a small battle in my mind whether I was going to ask them or not, I mean I just met them; this was our first BBQ, what if they don’t want to come to another one. Well, I ‘pushed forward’ and asked them if they had a relationship with God. One of them had, three didn’t. I proceeded to share the gospel with them (Sin, God’s Standard, Jesus, The Cross, Resurrection, New Life). No, none of them went to their knees to repent in tears. But, I believe that God will honor the servant that is willing and able to ‘push forward’ in sharing the good news with a world that needs to hear it!

My encouragement for you this week is: Allow God to help you Push Forward by meditating on His word and then go talk to someone about Jesus this week that needs to hear about their sin and then the good news of what God has done!

Have a great week talking about Jesus!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

“So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.” Acts 17:17

[/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.navigators.org/Tools”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Jesus Talk Experiences” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%154%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”https://www.facebook.com/groups/1779147522311161/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]



What Are You Teaching Your Family?_Part 2

[et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Marriage and Family

[/et_pb_text][et_pb_text admin_label=”Text” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”left” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”]

Dewater 4

“Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart; and you shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. And you shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:4-9

A few weeks ago, my wife and I took the youth of our church to Olympia, WA for the Franklin Graham prayer rally. It was a special time as we gathered at the capital of the state of Washington in order to pray for our state and country. After the prayer rally we ate lunch together, went to a trampoline park to jump for a couple hours, and then we had dinner together before we drove home.

One thing, I left out. When we all loaded into the church van and started onto the highway towards Olympia that morning, I told our passengers that we would be continuing a tradition that me, my wife, and my boys do whenever we travel somewhere. When we travel to another town (usually to see family) when we get onto the freeway, we take turns praying. We pray for the people that we are going to see, we pray that God would fill us with His love, we pray that we would be a blessing to those that we are going to visit. So, each person in the van (12 in all) took turns praying. Some were very formal, some were short and sweet. It was awesome! I was proud of each of them for praying.

Could you imagine what would happen if every family in Vancouver were to teach their kids to pray, out loud, together. How about if spouses would pray together. Something special happens when families spend time praying together out loud.

You might be saying, “I don’t pray much”, or, “I don’t know how to pray”. The best way to learn is to start. Praying is simply talking to God. Talk to Him like He is your best friend. Share the deep parts and share the shallow parts. Share the light parts and share the dark parts. He already knows it all, but He wants to hear it from you! As you start, make sure you take someone along with you, like your spouse and kids! Everything we do with or without our spouse and kids is teaching them something.

I want to encourage you to teach your family that prayer needs to be a vital part of who we are as followers of Christ!

Have a great week talking with God!

[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”4_4″][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”on” height=”10″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][et_pb_divider admin_label=”Divider” color=”#ffffff” show_divider=”off” height=”20″ divider_style=”solid” divider_position=”top” hide_on_mobile=”on”] [/et_pb_divider][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][et_pb_row admin_label=”Row”][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Scripture” url_new_window=”off” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%254%%” icon_color=”#c6b04d” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid”] Ephesians 5:22-33 [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Marriage Tools” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%173%%” icon_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][et_pb_column type=”1_3″][et_pb_blurb admin_label=”Blurb” title=”Discovering Your Spouse” url_new_window=”on” use_icon=”on” font_icon=”%%176%%” icon_color=”#c94e7f” use_circle=”off” circle_color=”#4c9cc4″ use_circle_border=”off” circle_border_color=”#4c9cc4″ icon_placement=”top” animation=”top” background_layout=”light” text_orientation=”center” use_icon_font_size=”off” use_border_color=”off” border_color=”#ffffff” border_style=”solid” url=”http://www.flagpage.com/”] [/et_pb_blurb][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section][et_pb_section admin_label=”section”][et_pb_row admin_label=”row”][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]