I don’t know about you; but, I am having a hard time believing that the year 2014 is almost gone.  We have less than twenty four hours left. As I am sitting here writing this post a little rhyme came to mind.  I do not know who originally said it so I cannot give credit where credit is due.  It goes as follows:

“Only one life, twill soon be past.  Only what’s done for Christ will last.”  Unknown

We have all seen the rubber bracelets that try to challenge us with, “What Would Jesus Do?”.  I find that far too many that wear them are no more concerned with the answer to that then they are interested in flying solo without a space ship to Mars.  Well…

As we close out the year 2014 I must ask myself, “What; if anything, have I accomplished for the Lord Jesus Christ?”  I could be filled with false humility and say that I have done what I could.  I could be a liar too.

Now, you and I both need to take some serious time alone today with God, His Word and a notebook of empty paper and seek God’s answer to our penetrating question.  Oh, it is not penetrating to you.  Well, it very well should be.  Maybe we need to see what the Word says in I Corinthians 11:28, “But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.”

Yes, I am fully aware that this passage of Scripture is linked to the communion practice.  Do not be so blind as to think this is the only time that examination is necessary.  The word “examine” means to test (literally or figuratively); by implication, to approve (definition from the Strong’s Exhaustive Concordence).

I am pretty certain that we all need to put our lives up against the Word of God as a test and see where we stand.  My guess is that we will all fall drastically short.  That is just a guess.

So, how are you doing?

Comparison: Then and Now

As this year is coming to a close we see such hate and discontent in our nation and world.  When Jesus was born in Bethlehem He was a threat to king Herod.  As I shared the other day, when a conquering king took over he often killed the defeated king.  Herod was no different.  When he heard of Jesus and that He was to become the King of the Jews he was more than angry.

Herod formulated a plan that would eliminate his competitor.  So, he thought.  What Herod did not figure in was that God had a plan and he was just one small part of the overall plan.  God used this evil king to move Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem.  Then God used him again to fulfill more prophecy.

Yet, there were many lives lost in Herod’s wicked plan.  Why would Jehovah do this?  It was all part of His plan.  Jehovah is not an evil God.  Yet, He does allow certain things to take place that you and I cannot explain.  Herod’s decree murdered countless children.  Look at Matthew 2:16, “Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked of the wise men, was exceeding wroth, and sent forth, and slew all the children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the coasts thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently enquired of the wise men.”

Why do we think there is any difference in what Herod did versus what takes place in our nation daily?  There is no difference.  We allow murder to take place every day and call it convenience.  We allow murder and call it abortion.  This is not a nice, fluffy Christmas story I know.  It is a harsh reality that we need to get on our knees and repent of and pray that God will forgive us all as a nation.

So, how are you doing?

The Child

Yesterday I had the privilege of filling in for a Pastor who terribly sick with what is going around.  After the Sunday evening service we were all standing around talking.  The subject of our son came up and I shared that one of my biggest concerns for our son is who will take care of him when my wife and I are no longer able.

A young girl in the Church was listening to this conversation.  When we finished she looked at me and said, “You need to read your tie.”  I thought to myself, “Okay”.  Then she pointed to my tie and said, “With God all things are possible.”  Yes, you guessed it.  I was sweetly and kindly rebuked by this little girl who is probably eight or ten years old.  She was reading my tie and quoting Matthew 19:26, “But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”

This really caught my attention as it would most people.  I have to agree with this dear heart.  She is right.   So, why do we doubt?  This little lady sure didn’t.  Oh, to have the faith of a little child and trust Jesus like that.

Is there something in your life that you need to trust Jesus for?  If there is maybe it would do you good as it did me to take another look at Matthew 19:26, “But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”

So, how are you doing?

The King

On Christmas Eve I posted about king Herod.  As I was looking over that post waiting for my computer to unfreeze and move on I noticed something I had written.  Take a look at this:

“It all started when Herod received word of a King to be born in Bethlehem.  Look at Matthew 2:3, “When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.”  This word “troubled” means to stir or agitate.  Herod was an unhappy camper.  He was the sitting king of that day and he would have nobody else dethrone him if at all possible.  I don’t know too many rulers that want to be dethroned.  It usually means death to the sitting king.”

What sent me off thinking was my last sentence.  “It usually means death to the sitting king.”  I began to think about the Christian life.  We talk about Jesus being on the throne of our life.  We talk a nice talk; but, when the rubber meets the road do we are really allow Jesus to be our King or is He some spiritual genie in a bottle to give us what we want, when we want?  Only you can answer that question for yourself.  Be honest because Jesus knows your heart.

We struggle in life because there is a battle raging inside of us.  The flesh wars against the spirit.  The one we feed will be the winner.  For us to make Jesus our King then the flesh has to die.  Remember the conquering king normally kills the king that is conquered.  It is the same in the spiritual realm.  When Jesus comes in He destroys the works of the flesh when we are totally yielded to Him.  There is the problem.  We must be totally yielded to Him.

So, how are you doing?

The Sheep

This past Sunday I talked to my mother on the phone as she and her husband are wintering in a warmer place than Indiana.  She shared with me some things that the Pastor of the Church she attends there had pointed out that morning.

First off he shared that he did not know where the idea that Mary was riding a donkey on their journey to Bethlehem came from; but, he did not believe that was true.  He said, “If I were pregnant I would not want to ride on a donkey.”  Not to mention that Joseph and Mary were poor people.  They probably could not afford to purchase a donkey.  I agree with this Preacher.

Secondly, he pointed out that first off he had been to the holy land eleven times.  He said that because of the sacrificial system of that time the shepherds would pay close attention to their sheep.  When a lamb was born without spot or blemish the shepherd would take the lamb and “swaddle” it and lay it “in a manger” to protect it for the sacrifice.

Yet another piece of the puzzle of the birth of Christ.  Look at Luke 2:12, “And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.”  Jesus Christ is the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world.  Mary would wrap the Babe in grave clothes or strips of cloth.  Each little finger and toe would be wrapped and then then up the arm or foot and leg.  Then the torso and so on until the Babe of Bethlehem was swaddled.  Then Mary like a shepherd laid the child Jesus in a manger.  When the shepherds arrived they knew Who they were seeing.  The sights pointed them forward to the cross.  They knew they were in the presence of Messiah.  I have to echo the praise the the angels, “Glory to God in the highest!”  Oh, what a Saviour!  As the writer penned, “He came from Heaven to earth to show the way…”.  Will you trust Him as your Saviour today?  He came for you.

So, how are you doing?


The other day I came across a Christmas show titled, “A Christmas Snow”.  I will try not to give away any details; but, I would highly recommend the movie.  I have watched it in part three or four times now and I think I would like to have it on DVD.

There is one character in the movie that I really like.  Sam is the grandfather type and give great counsel from God’s Word.  You must see it.  One point in the movie Sam says that he has become fond of this part of the Scriptures.  He then reads from his Bible.  Let me share with you one verse of what he reads and you can go find the rest and read it all on your own.  Look at Luke 2:29, “Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word:”

This is a quote from Simeon.  He had been waiting for the coming Messiah for many long years I suppose.  Then one day God tells him that the day he has waited for is here.  Joseph and Mary bring Jesus to the temple as the law required.  Their act of obedience brought the fulfillment of Simeon’s dream.  Then Simeon declares the he can now die in peace because he has seen Messiah.  He was prepared and he was ready.

Yesterday we celebrated the birth of Christ.  He came so that He might die on the cross.  His death paid the sin debt of all men.  We who put our faith and trust in Him receive the free gift that cost Jesus everything.

I want to ask you a question.  When you depart this earth will you depart like Simeon, in peace because you have made peace with God?  Trust Him today before it is too late.

So, how are you doing?

Wise Men Still Seek Him

Merry Christmas 2014 to you my friends and family!  Today is the day we have all been waiting for.  Last night was probably sleepless for some children and adults.  The anticipation was possibly like a fog and could be cut with a knife.  I remember growing up and not being able to sleep at night.  I still remember one year sneaking up while everyone else was asleep and I remember seeing a game that I received that year.  I didn’t sleep at all that night.  Ha, Ha!

Today is not all about opening presents.  It is not about our favorite food.  It is all about Jesus.  Well; wait just a minute.  What is today all about?  It is all about Jesus.  Now, I am not so ignorant as to think that Jesus was actually born on December 25th.  This is just the day that we have set aside to celebrate.

Unfortunately, it has become a holiday and it is largely not held high as a holy day.  That is exactly what it is.  Think about the wise men.  They traveled a great distance to see Jesus.  So much so that they did not make it right away.  They came later to see Jesus.

Look at Matthew 2:11, “And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.”  They got there late.  Joseph, Mary and Jesus had moved into a house by the time they arrived.  Were they late?  Not at all.

Today let’s focus on their gifts.  The world seems to focus on the gifts they give.  What did these wise men give to Jesus?

They gave Him gold.  This represents Jesus’ Kingship.  He is King of all kings and LORD of all lords.  Gold would be a fitting gift for a king.

They gave Him frankincense.  This represents Jesus’ High Priestly ministry.  Jesus is our High Priest.  He goes in on our behalf.

They gave Him myrrh.  This is interesting to me.  This represents Jesus’ ministry as Prophet.  Myrrh is a burial spice.

With these gifts God the Father was providing for Jesus, Mary and Joseph.  These were expensive spices and could be sold for money and used in their lives.

God has given a gift to you and I.  Jesus willingly gave His life for you and I.  He came to earth, lived a sinless life and was crucified to pay the debt of sin for every human being ever born, past, present and future.  Will you trust Him today as your Saviour?  I pray that you will.

So, how are you doing?


We have seen in the Scriptures how God uses many different things, circumstances and even the unbeliever to work out His plan.  I mean, He used a donkey to speak to Baalim.  I am glad that it has not been recorded in Scripture some of my less than positive moments in life.

God even used an heathen king to bring about His plan.  It all started when Herod received word of a King to be born in Bethlehem.  Look at Matthew 2:3, “When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.”  This word “troubled” means to stir or agitate.  Herod was an unhappy camper.  He was the sitting king of that day and he would have nobody else dethrone him if at all possible.  I don’t know too many rulers that want to be dethroned.  It usually means death to the sitting king.

In this instance it would have meant death too.  Think about it.  Lets go a little deep here.  If Herod came face to face with King Jesus then Herod would have to die.  He would have to be just like you and I.  He must die to self.  He must crucify the old man.  Even worse, he would have to bow the knee to Jesus and he was not willing to do that.  This prideful dictator would bow to nobody.

Okay; friend, it is your turn.  Will you humbly bow before Jesus and confess you are a sinner and you need a Saviour?  It is up to you.  The truth is that you can bow before King Jesus today and trust Him as your Saviour or you can bow before Him as your Judge.  The choice is yours to make.

So, how are you doing?


The Shepherds

You have all heard some of my stories from my years growing up on the farm.  I will do my best not to bore you to death with one today.  I was thinking about the whole Christmas account.  I began to think about these shepherds.

What do we know about the shepherds?  We know they carried great responsibility.  The sheep were a source of wool for clothing.  Maybe they were a source of milk.  Maybe they were even a source of food to the families of these shepherds.  The Bible does not let us in on such secrets.  What do we know about these humble shepherds.

They were faithful shepherds.  Look at the words of Luke 2:8, “And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.”

They were fearful shepherds.  Look at the words of Luke 2:9, “And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.”

They were first to hear the message.  If you read the words of Scripture in Luke 2:10-14 you can listen in on the message they received.  The message of Messiah coming.  Humble shepherds were chose to receive the message.

They were faithful shepherds.  Look at Luke 2:15, “And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.”  They did not call the media or anyone else.  They made immediate arrangements and went to see Messiah.  I believe they were waiting for Him and so it was made known to them where they could find Him.

Are you like these lowly shepherds?  We see the bumper stickers and signs all over this time of year that tell us, “Wise Men Still Seek Him!” and this is true.  Yet, humble shepherds can seek Him and find Him too.

So, how are you doing?

The Inn Keeper

As we ponder the Christmas account there are many people involved.  I have come to see this a little more this year than I have in the past.  We have looked at Jesus Himself humbling Himself and coming as a human being into a world He created to redeem us from sin.  We have looked at Mary.  We have looked at Joesph.  Yesterday we took a quick look at the angels.

Today, I would like to consider the inn keeper. As I took a quick look before this writing I found nothing about the inn keeper.  By his actions allowing Joseph and young Mary to stay in his stables tells me that he was a man of compassion.  Maybe, I am wrong and he is a man of greed trying to pack in as many as possible into his overcrowded establishment.  I would like to think on the lines of the compassionate.

As I kept considering this account of the coming of Jesus the first time the thought hit me.  This inn keeper came in direct contact with Jesus.  He had a choice to make.  He could allow Jesus in or he could reject Jesus and send Him away.  He chose to allow Jesus to reside there.

Now, friend you and I have a choice.  We can either receive Jesus Christ as our Saviour and make room for Him ore we can hang out the spiritual “No Vacancy” sign.  Look at the words of Luke 2:7, “And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.”

No room.  No room for the King of kings and LORD of lords.  It is your turn my friend.  We all must make room for King Jesus everyday and not just on Christmas.

So, how are you doing?