Dr. Paul Chappell shared the following in his “Daily in the Word” daily e-mail devotional on Sunday March 16th:

“I read something interesting about African impalas. These large animals have powerful legs—so powerful that they can leap to a height of over ten feet and cover more than thirty feet in a single bound. Because of this amazing leaping ability, you would think that a very large enclosure would be necessary when they are kept in a zoo. Yet in fact a fence only a few feet high will keep them safely contained—as long as they cannot see what is on the other side of the fence. The impala will not jump if he cannot see where he will land.”

As I was reading this from Dr. Chappell my mind began to race to a thousand different things.  I think the impala resemble today’s Christian far too much.  We sit in our “curches” and look out the stained glass windows at life around us.  Yet, we never seem to move past this.  When we loose hope we are the most miserable people or person on earth.  Hope is what drives us.  I believe that one reason that God’s Church is not flourishing is because we feel hopeless.  We feel hopeless because we have been trying to do things in our own power and do them our own way.

It is high time we get back to the fundamentals of the faith like fervent prayer, fasting, reading the Bible, faithfully attending Church services.  This list could go on for quite a long time if the truth be told.  When we loose hope the first thing we need to do is the first thing.  If you look around you and you feel hopeless then get back to the basics of your Christian life.  If you have never trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour then run to Him for salvation and start there.  You will never regret it.  I promise.

So, how are you doing?


To Tell The Truth

While looking at social media yesterday I came across a site that had a slideshow of notes from children that were straight to the point.  I am sharing one of these here:

“Dear Uncle Bryan,

I hope you have a good birthday.  I love you uncle Bryan.  How are you?  Have you Hird of saten?  he makes you do bad thagings.



You can see more in a slide show here.

This young lady shared more spiritual truth in her note than some so-called Churches share in a week.  I think you and I can take some lessons from this dear heart.  We need to be sharing the truth with others.  We might not want to make it so blunt; but, there are times for that too.

The truth is that we have an enemy he seeks to destroy us.  He will use anything he possibly can to do his dirty work.  We must be prepared to stand against him in the power of Christ.

Look at I Peter 5:8, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:”.  I am told that this lion is an old lion that lays in wait in the high grass waiting for prey to get close.  He then roars and scares the prey and the younger, more able lions make the attack.  This should sound familiar.  Our enemy uses the same tactics.  You and I need to heed the admonition of the Scriptures and “Be sober, be vigilant;”.  Your life could depend upon it.

So, how are you doing?


Testings and Trials

Life is not always a bed of roses.  Case in point is the blizzard of 2014 that encased Indiana in around twelve inches of snow.  This is not a pleasant experience for some of us who live here.  Me included.  I don’t mind some snow; but, that was way too much for me.  I don’t want to complain.  I did get a big laugh when it was warmer in Gnome, Alaska than Indianapolis, IN.

One one hand this was a real trial for me and it was also a real blessing too.  The blessing was that my wife Tara was able to stay home two extra days.  The trial was that we could not really get out of the house; but, I cleaned off the driveway as close to the big storm hitting as I could.  Then during the storm I had to go outside and clean off the heat pump on the outside of our house to keep the furnace running efficiently.  It was brutal; but, I endured this to keep my family warm.

Look at Genesis 22:1, “And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.”  In this verse the word “tempt” means to test.  The thing is that these testings are not for God to see what we are made of.  God allows these tests into our lives to show us what we are made of and to bring glory to Him.  As we experience trials in our lives the world of people around us watches hoping that we make it to show them that there is a difference between us and them.

It is hard to keep in perspective some times; but, we must remember that God allows things to come into our lives to drive us to Him.  When we are tested we need to run to God and give up on all the other things, etc… that we normally seek.  How do you respond to trials and testings?  Run to Jesus.

So, how are you doing?

The Abundant Life

We are all looking for a life that is abundant and full.  Well, the Christian life is like that.  This on thing Jesus tells us that He came to do for His children.  Look at John 10:10, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”  Now, how do we do that?

  • We must get fed up – Jeremiah 15:16, “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts. ”  We must be careful what we put into us each moment of each day.  If we put garbage in we will get garbage coming out.  We are like a funnel.
  • We must get fueled up – Ephesians 5:18, “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”  We must be careful who and what we allow to control us.  I know, I hear all the time “I can handle it.”
  • We must get fired up– Luke 24:32, “And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?”  Do you ever have “spiritual heartburn”?  If we get fed up on the Scriptures and filled up with the Spirit of God then we will get fired up and have a burning desire in our hearts of follow Christ and serve Him.
  • We must go fetch them up– Luke 14:23, “And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.”  It is time for God’s people to leave their sparkling sanctuaries and go out to where people are and share the gospel with them.  He commanded us to “go”.

Dear Christian friends, we must be feeding on God’s Word daily, we must get fueled up, we must must get fired up and we must go fetch up the lost and bring them into God’s fold.

So, how are you doing?



I had the privilege of sitting in a meeting the other day with some fine Christian people.  One man shared with us about the markings on his face.  He shared that at two weeks old his face was marked on the right side to show his village.  On the left side of his face were more marking that showed that he was from the chief’s family.

This reminded me of a boy I went to junior high school with.  He had been in auto mechanics class at another school and while he and the instructor stood over the engine compartment the radiator exploded.  This left him very deeply burned from his waist up.  I remember that he was horrible to look at in the summer when the weather would permit people to wear less clothes and he would go around without a shirt on.  It pained me to look at him.  The marks and scars were deep and to look at them would cause a person deep pain.

You knew in either case that these people were marked or scarred for life.  They carried these marks literally in their bodies.  Which brings my thoughts to Jesus Christ.  When He lived upon the earth He was crucified.  Even now He carries those marks in His hands and feet.  He also bears a mark in His side where they pierced Him with a spear to make sure the crucifixion was complete.  He is marked for all eternity from that moment on forward.

I was reminded of the truth of Galatians 6:17, “From henceforth let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.”  Then I thought about myself.  I wonder what “marks” do I bear that would identify me with Jesus Christ.  Are there any such marks in my life or on my life.  Christians are being killed all over the world for their faith.  Do you and I have the “marks” of Christ that would set us apart to be singled out for our faith and killed?  I don’t know the answer to that.  Let’s live our lives obviously Christian; but, not obnoxiously Christian.

So, how are you doing?

Are You Drifting?

On October 14, 2013 I shared a post on “The Dangers Of Drifting”.  I fully intended that to be the first post in a series on “Drifting”.  I learned a long time ago to not force things that will not go.  So, we will begin today a series on the thought “Are You Drifting?”

Look at Hebrews 2:1, “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.”  The word “let” means to run out as leaking vessels.

First I would like to look at the truth if you are not paddling the boat then you are drifting. Far too many people in life just want to coast along.  This does not work in life.  You have to put forth effort.  If you do not put forth any effort then you are aimlessly drifting.  This is a bad thing.  Drifting is an unconscious process.

Jesus never teaches in the Word of God to “go with the flow”.  As a matter of fact, He teaches quite the opposite.  To a lost and dying world we look odd or different.  We should look different, talk different, act different and we should be different.  Christianity is not a religion of being a chameleon.  We cannot just change our colors so to speak to blend in with the crowd.

The Christian life is a life of effort.  Drifting takes no effort.  It takes work to pray, to share the Gospel, to attend Church and the list goes on and on.  In no way do we work to be saved.  We work because we are saved.  So, if you are moving downstream in the Christian life and you are not paddling, you are dangerously drifting.

So, how are you doing?


Who Is Leading Anyway?

We live in a day that people seem to be fearful.  The possibility of economic failure brings great fear to some.  Government shut-down brings fear to some.  Even the dark of night brings fear to some people.  No, I am not making fun of people.

I know a little bit about fear.  There have been times in my life that I have been deeply afraid.  I think that is why I seek to obliterate it in the lives of others now.  Fear paralyzes us and keeps us from doing anything profitable for God.  The devil laughs at us when we are in such a place.  He has us in a place that we are not doing anything for the glory of God.

Do you find yourself in this place?  We need to realize that God is not leading us into places that He has not first gone through.  Maybe you are trying to lead your life.  Then you are going through uncharted territory.  It is not that God has not been there; but, you have gone without Him.  If you will not let Him lead you then you are on your own.  Look at Psalm 78:53, “And he led them on safely, so that they feared not: but the sea overwhelmed their enemies.”  Remember how He led Israel, realize He will lead you also and rest in His perfect leadership.

So, how are you doing?

Are You In Tune?

I am told that is you strike a tuning fork in the same room with another tuning fork that eventually the one that was not struck will begin to vibrate.  I was also told that this applies to a harp also.  I am told that this is the method of tuning a harp.

When I heard this I immediately began to think.  This should be how you and I should share Christ with others.  The gospel should reverberate from us like the sound from a tuning fork or a harp.  Those around us should be positively effected by our “Christianity”.  The problem is that we have a bad day or a bad week and we simply destroy everything we have worked for up to that moment.  That is all that it takes too, is a moment.

When you live before people are you a harp making sweet melody of the LORD Jesus Christ or are you more of an instrument that is out of tune?  Look at Psalm 92:3, “Upon an instrument of ten strings, and upon the psaltery; upon the harp with a solemn sound.”  Here is the thing.  All the people around you and I know so we might as well quit lying to ourselves and deal with it.

If you do an inventory; as we all need to do, you might find that you are out of tune so to speak.  When you come to this realization you need to pick up the tuning fork of the Word of God.  When it resounds let it begin to vibrate a chord in your life.

So, how are you doing?

Renewed Like The Eagle’s

If you know me very well at all then you know how much I love eagles and their examples in the Scriptures.  I have a couple sermons on eagles.  When I was reading my Bible the other day I ran across this verse in Psalm 103:5, “Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”

This brought to my feeble memory of how the eagle goes through a molting period. Up to this point the eagle gets dirty.  There are bugs, dirt and all kind of unmentionables that make their way into their feathers.  I am told that at some point that eagle gets so bogged down that they can no longer fly.  It is now that the eagle no longer soars above the storms.  It is stuck sitting on it’s rock, enduring the storms.

At some point the eagle gets fed up with this situation and begins to pluck it’s feathers from it’s own body.  Ouch!  Once the feathers and debris are removed the feathers can grow back. The eagle’s beak even becomes covered over with a calcium deposit that restricts it’s breathing.  The talons also begin to break off and become bloody nubs.

When the eagle can fly again it will jump off it’s rock and fly out.  As it returns to the rock it will fly directly into the rock to break off the calcium deposit on it’s beak and to break off the nubs that used to be powerful talons.  Once this process is completed the eagle never goes back to being this way again.

Friend, are you burdened down with dirt, parasites and unmentionable things?  If you are it is time for radical amputation.  You need to pluck off the feathers, break off the bloody numbs that used to be talons and knock off the calcium deposit that keeps you from breathing the breath of God.

So, how are you doing?

Gone Away

I have shared the example of the compass here before; but, I love it.  When we use a compass we do not have to be far off at the beginning to be way off in the end.  You can only be off a couple clicks in the beginning starting on the east coast of America.  When you arrive in California you will be way off from your intended destination, if you make it into California.  You might be in Washington State or Mexico depending upon the direction you are off.

Ezekiel tells of Levites that had “gone away far from me,” as he was moved of God to write.  Look at Ezekiel 44:10-11, “And the Levites that are gone away far from me, when Israel went astray, which went astray away from me after their idols; they shall even bear their iniquity.  Yet they shall be ministers in my sanctuary, having charge at the gates of the house, and ministering to the house: they shall slay the burnt offering and the sacrifice for the people, and they shall stand before them to minister unto them.”

If we are not careful we can be off a click or two in our Christian life and then we will find one day that God will give the testimony of us that we have “gone away far from me,”.  This is a sad reality in our day.  Churches are filled with leadership that have left their Saviour.  This could be due to the sad reality that they never knew Him.  It could be that they have been deceived into believing a lie.

The Word of God is vitally important and it is our compass.  We need to be so familiar with our Compass that we never stray from the narrow road; not even one or two clicks.

So, how are you doing?