Thursday, August 25, 2011


Had to go up a really tall ladder the other day.

Well, it wasn't really that tall...but suddenly as I approached the fourth rung, it seemed to shoot into the air.

Aluminum ladder...a bit rickety...with no supports up high.

Needing to change a battery in a fire alarm station. (Makes me wish hot air fell, so they could put these down by the floorboards.)

After a few attempts at climbing, and feeling like I needed a parachute...Jackie had mercy on me and climbed briskly to where that little screamer could be dealt with.

Principle...for me, the higher up the more I need to hold on to something very stable to feel a post, or tree.

Same thing is true in the cycle of life.

The "higher" you go the more you need stable support...from friends, and the presence of God, a rock.

And God is really great at's always been that way...Psalm 18:31-33.

Keep climbing my friend, but don't loose your balance.

'Cause the "heights" we arrive at can bring us to places of the dizzies.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Casting lots

It has been very busy....teaching, coaching, counseling, mentoring, busy that I have not entered here for a few extra days. Forgive me. My commitment to this site is top drawer.
Well, it seems like we are only days away from action that could bring the church it's new senior pastor. We have taken 10 clear steps in the direction of doing it well and it has been rigorous.
So I am preparing for the teaching on Sunday, to prep the church spiritually for the action of the next few days and it comes to me to take up the text of Acts 1 - the text between the 40 days of ministry of the resurrected Christ and the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.
A text often given little focus.
It is a gem.
The facing of crud in the past...Judas, including the graphic manner of his suicide.
Finding someone to replace him among the 12 core apostles.
So they set up a standard...prayed a lot....and cast lots. One was chosen and one was not.
Cast lots??!!
They end the process with what seems like a random, chancy act...casting lots.
And the choice was made..
..and the Spirit was sent..
..and here we are today!
So I take heart that through all of our frailty, God's purposes can prevail - chosen or not.
And in these days as the lot casting (the vote) approaches, I plan to spend more time seeking His presence, than sweating the process.
And I am reminded of the proverb that says: "The lot is cast into the lap, but its every decision is from the Lord."
Proverbs 16:33.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The perfect will of God

Ever get caught up praying for the "perfect will of God" in your life?

Ever get stalled out because you didn't feel you were in that perfect groove?

Ever make excuses for your behaviors or lack thereof because of timing and locale?

I've been guilty on all counts.

So, today I was helped a lot in reading the last portion of I Corinthians...notably 16:5-9.

My eyes start to widen as I consider that these are the words of one who has encountered the Person of Christ directly, whose writings are much of the New Testament, and who functions with apostolic clarity in all of his life.

And here are some of his "iffy" words in just one short paragraph.

Intend to
Perhaps I will
Wherever I go
I hope to
If the Lord permits
A wide door..has opened..and there are many adversaries.

Not stressed about the "perfect will of God," he seems to be doing the will of God all the time, and letting the place and timing of it all just work out. He is ambling along (if you will) knowing that if he keeps his energies targeted, God will take care of place, time and process.

No postponements.
No excuses.
No wasted prayer directions.

Just doing it today and every day...the will of God, through the life of Christ lived in us.


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Body image

Went for the annual physical checkup this morning.

Oh, I thought I was going to have a small bit of blood drawn for testing, but it proved to be the works. Pushing, feeling, probing, listening, looking, testing, vials of draws and after an hour of this, my great doctor (David Bird) said, "Don't think I'll do more...just one thing to watch and you are doing fine."

So, I walked out of the office, grateful for a body that hopefully will continue to be like the Hondas that I drive.

Oh, there are sags, and strength diminishments, nap hungers, and smaller helpings please. But at 40 pounds off max weight, I actually feel pretty good. Sure: Glasses. Hearing assistance...if I will wear them! Cap to protect from too many rays. Shoe inserts. Daily blood pressure checks and a few pills morning and evening...and thus far we are good to go. Oh, and take that walk often.

Truth is, I am working most on a new model. At the best, this present one will keep needing to be propped up and will finally give up. So, I am working on a new model.

It is one built from the inside inside-to-eternity model. Started with a massive design infusion from God which made me a "temple of the Holy Spirit...a place set aside for reverence indwelt by the Holy Spirit." The makings of a God who made the universe.

It is my desire that I will live in such a way that this temple will simply keep rising up, up, up, until at peak it is touching heaven, the realm of God Himself.

Just like with our physical bodies...exercise, proper nutrition, enough sleep, and avoidance of abuses will do a lot to prolong its with our everlasting bodies, our temples...time with God, being in His word, being infused with His Spirit, and all the great habits of the Kingdom, will prepare us for forever.

You can tell people who have found secrets in this temple construction...lots of horizontal lines in their faces, lots of upturned corners on their mouths, lots of creases in their hands, lots of peace upon their dwelling.

So keep the right body image in mind. May I suggest Mother Teressa?


Saturday, August 6, 2011


Caught some of the interesting reflections from Central Bible College Alumni lately?

We, as alum, are nudged by it, to look back on our days on that campus. Preciptator: the General Council has voted to join the three Springfield schools into one large Evangel University. I am deeply indebted to those two years at CBC. It was life-shaping for me.

And sometimes funny.

A memory -

Lottie Rieckehoff was the Dean of Women and a force for dignity and what is becoming to women of God. She had clear boundaries for the women under her charge...and we all could feel the impact of her presence. Tall, thin, proper, single...and world class in signing for the hearing impaired.

One day with all of us gathered in morning chapel, she was holding forth for those characteristics of self-control, giving us a lecture with plenty of clear, and stern words.

In the midst of her lecture, she drew up to full height and said in measured tones: "I know what is happening on on this campus, and I want you to know that I do NOT approve of all the kissing that is going on right under my nose."

Heads suddenly up...elbows poking...wide eyes...muffled chuckles. Did we really hear that?!

We did.

And we remember you Lottie. Remember your willingness to make things clear (even if the boundaries were drawn too tight then - and the words sometimes became garbled). At least you stood up and made it clear...and lived it before us.

We remember your call for practiced righteousness, not just positional righteousness.

Thank you.

We remember.

Friday, August 5, 2011

For Sale

For Sale.

Saw an incredible page of information recently that was headed, "Celebrities for Sale."

On the page, everthing from...
* lunch with - Sarah Palin - $63, 500 (..and that was the midrange of celebrity lunches available)
* the tissue into which Scarlett Johansson blew her nose on Leno's Tonight Show - $5,300 - really?
* a jar of air exhaled by Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt - $523 - and the retrieval method?
* Justin Timberlake's leftover french toast after a radio interview - $3,154

A whole page of such items...anywhere from hundreds, to millions (lunch with Warren Buffet for over 2 million) -

And as I pondered, the scripture came readily to mind..."know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from were bought with a price (the precious life blood of the Lord Jesus Christ).

Consider then your worth.

So don't let any voices today cause you to sell yourself short. Don't exchange a bit of you for something far less worthy, like a moment of sexual expression for the internal knowledge of self-control.

Be who you are. Stand tall.

Act your worth.

For your worth?...absolutely priceless.