Faith & Reason ... a mystery

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Who are you serving?


The Apostle Paul’s response to the Risen Jesus recorded in Philippians 3:10-11, He says;  “I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.”

Paul’s response to the resurrection of Jesus is a road map to our own resurrection. The map is to embrace the sufferings which comes through sacrificial love. Easter is a journey of hope and eternal blessing, the question for our journey is are we following the map? Are you fighting it or are you embracing the sacrificial love it takes to serve, bless, and give to others? Join me in offering sacrificial love… then, we will know Christ and the power of his resurrection.

So, who are you serving? You know I love ya, Don

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Doubt?


Don’t we all love doubting Thomas. I think he is popular because everyone has doubts. John 20:29 which records the risen Jesus responding to the doubts of Thomas. It states: “Then Jesus told him, ‘Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Did you catch it? Jesus includes you and me in his response to Thomas. Even when we doubt, Jesus responds with a blessing and grace,. He didn’t condemn Thomas, but offered him visual proof and blesses us … because our faith is built on trust. It is good to know that our God walks with us in our doubts and responds by blessing us through his love. 

Even in our doubts, we see a God reaching out to us. You know I love ya, Don

Friday, March 25, 2016

Good Friday ... The day Jesus walked through sin!

I
t is Good Friday! Good Friday is the Friday of Holy Week, commemorating the crucifixion, suffering, and death of Jesus. We call it good, because God is so good in offering His own life as redemption for our debt of sin.


John 20:19-20 where the Apostle John records an encounter with the Risen Jesus. He writes: “On the evening of the first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you!’ After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.”



My friends, Isn’t it wonderful to know that Jesus walks through the doors of our lives and says, “Peace be with you.” Even when we try to lock him out in fear or grief or shame, … he doesn’t get angry, but responds with Peace. What do you lock away from Jesus? Remember, the risen Jesus is not angry with you. He loves you and offers you peace.

Happy Easter ... You know I love ya, Don


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Look Up and see a greater future!


Luke 24:25-27 records: “Jesus said to them, ‘How foolish you are, and how slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Christ have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?’ And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.”

I know when I hear a fantastic story or an unbelievable account of events, I am slow to believe. The two walking with Jesus after his resurrection were depressed and struggling to believe the testimony of those who had seen Jesus alive. Jesus addresses their doubts with proof. When the two on the road to Emmaus looked beyond their depression and doubt, they saw the truth. They believed. The same is true for us. When you and I look beyond our doubts and depression the truth of a risen Jesus emerges and we believe. 

Look up and may He open your eyes to a personal resurrection!
You know I love ya, Don

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Easter is a Reminder ... Do you remember?


Luke 24:6-8 records the angels at the empty tomb of Jesus telling the women, “He is not here; he is risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again. Then they remembered his words.”

It is hard to always remember things. I forget where I left my coat. I forget where I put down my cell phone. I have even walked out of the store and forget where I parked my car. In our busy lives, we forget. Easter is a yearly event which reminds of us the power in the one we trust. Just like the angels reminding the women, “He is risen,” we are reminded to take the resurrection of Jesus with us everyday!

So take these words with you today … “He is not here; He is risen!” ... may it remind you to celebrate Easter. 

You know I love ya, Don

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Resurrected Hope, Future, and Dreams!


Mark 5:36 – “Ignoring what they said, Jesus told the synagogue ruler, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”

So, they go to the house, people are in full mourning.  Shouting.  Making noise.  Wailing. Grieving.  In anguish.  Jesus tells them to be quiet.  She’s sleeping.

What a cruel joke to play on the parents.  How would he know?  She’s dead.  The doctor called it.  No pulse, no breathing. --- Jesus gets rid of them…the text says “he put them out” …just like you put out a dog to go do his business. I don’t know about you, but I am glad that Jesus puts out bad, ugly negatives when he arrives.

Taking the parents and just a few disciples, they go to the child.  He reaches down, picks up her lifeless hand and says, “Little girl, get up.”  Speaking in Aramaic … her native tongue. Jesus restores the dream of daughter, a family by meeting them in their native surroundings.

Immediately, just as the woman was restored immediately to full health, the little girl is immediately resurrected to full life.  She walked around and everything! We can well imagine the joy in that house that day!  We can well imagine the wonder at this man who can heal, and also raise the dead!  What a miracle!  Who can do such things?  Only Jesus, the Son of the Living God!

Resurrection is not limited to when our heart stops beating. Jesus resurrects hopes, resurrects futures, and resurrects dreams everyday.

Success is found when you and I approach Jesus … we have to water and cultivate our faith and trust in him just like Jairus and the Woman did. If you don’t, your hope, your future and your dreams die.

The first week at Park Chapel CC, I noticed in the foyer / hallway to the worship center was a large pot with basically a stick protruding out of dirt with one leaf on it. The plant was completely dry. I felt sorry for it, so I started watering it…six months later the stick was covered in little green leaves. I did not know that the custodial staff was intentionally ignoring it because they wanted to throw it out. We laughed about that…When we moved to HCC, after seven years … that plant was taller than I am now and covered in large, beautiful leaves. What resurrected that plant? Water!

My Friends, what do we learn from this scripture? Go to Jesus to find water, let him reach out to you and he will resurrect your hope, your future and your dreams.

You know I love ya, Don

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Step out in Faith!


            Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.”

            Oswald Chambers wrote, “Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time.”

What is holding you back? Go for it and trust God to take you through.

You know I love ya, Don

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Training Ground for a Deeper Faith!


Romans 8:26 “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.”

Someone asked C.S. Lewis, "Why do the righteous suffer?" "Why not?" he replied. "They're the only ones who can take it." I think we can take it better those who don’t know the Lord because we have Him and a future hope on our side to give us grace to endure. We are made new again when we receive help for our weakness.

A man visited an orange grove where an irrigation pump had broken down. The season was unusually dry and some of the trees were beginning to die for lack of water. The farmer giving the tour then took the man to his own orchard where irrigation was used sparingly. "These trees could go without rain for another 2 weeks," he said. "You see, when they were young, I frequently kept water from them. This hardship caused them to send their roots deeper and deeper into the soil in search of moisture.

“Now my trees are the deepest-rooted trees in the area. While others are being scorched by the sun, these trees are finding moisture at a greater depth."

When we receive help for our weakness, we find our moisture, blessing, help, and strength in the Lord. Our lives on Earth are a training camp to ready us for Heaven. Don’t make a terrible ending to your life’s journey by giving up --- Finish your God given course well. Meanwhile, don’t desert your post, stay in the word and make your life Christ-centered. 

You know I love ya, Don