Easter - 2018

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Filled with Hope

“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.”- 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17

This verse is filled with hope!

A. The Lord will command. I love the Lord's commands. He is safe and just. He is compassionate and filled with wisdom. He is also love. Perfect commands bring abundant life and total hope.

B. We will be reunited with our loved ones that were Christ-followers. There is no loss in death except for the loss of the sinful nature. Then when we are reunited, we will experience total unity in heart, mind, and soul to recognize the completion of our hope.

C. We will be with Jesus. I don't think there is anything that will be more hopeful than a future of being with Jesus. If you are familiar with the song, "I bowed on my knees" there is a line that states, "I want to see Jesus for He is the One who died for me." I know Jesus because He lives in my heart, but I am ready to see Jesus. That will be when my faith (that which I hope for) will be made sight.

This verse is filled with hope.

"Almighty God, thank you for hope. Thank you for being the source of all hope. Thank you for filling my day with hope so that I may serve you and bring hope to others. In Jesus' name I say thanks. Amen."

You know I love ya - Don

Friday, May 29, 2009

Friday Funny - Final Exam

This is my first day back after vacation...I need to take this final exam
Three patients in a mental institution prepare for an examination given by the head psychiatrist.

If the patients pass the exam, they will be free to leave the hospital. However, if they fail, the institution will detain them for seven years.

The doctor takes the three patients to the top of a diving board overlooking an empty swimming pool, and asks the first patient to jump.

The first patient jumps head first into the pool and breaks both arms.

Then the second patient jumps and breaks both legs.

The third patient looks over the side and refuses to jump.

"Congratulations! You're a free man. Just tell me why didn't you jump?" asked the doctor.

To which the third patient answered, "Well Doc, I can't swim!"

Remember to laugh - Happy Friday, Don

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Run, Run, Run

"However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace." - Acts 20:24
"Dear God, help me today to run the race with passion and to seize the drive to finish the task that you have given me. May my life testify to the good news of your love in my life. I am not asking you to bless me, but to take me to where you are blessing so that I can witness and be a witness to some of its overflow. I love you. Amen"

You know I love ya - Don

Friday, May 22, 2009

Friday Funny - Children and church

One particular four-year old prayed, "And forgive us our
trash baskets as we forgive those who put trash in our baskets.

To anyone that has ever had someone else put their trash in their baskets...have a great Friday and Memorial Day.

You know I love ya - Don

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

United brings Him Glory!

“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 15:5-6
Have you ever served on a team or committee that has a hard time agreeing? Maybe it is only a team of two and it is still hard to find common ground? I don't know about you, but I have and it is very difficult in our society to find a common thread of united purpose. There is usually a great deal of compromise and people have to give and take and over-all the final product is just o.k. with everyone, instead of it being a spectacular final production.

This verse speaks to me about unity and the power of the Holy Spirit in uniting Christ-followers for the purpose of glorifying God. We are all very different and have many opinions and thoughts. Yet, when we unify our hearts, minds, souls, and our strengths for a "God-Calling" the results are amazing.

I often tell my church choirs that we are to sing so that it sounds like "one" voice. Why? First, it is pleasant to the ear and understandable to those listening. Second, it is a testimony that a diverse people with many opinions and bias backgrounds are working toward a single goal....glorifying the God they love. With all the diversity and lack of unity in our world today (just look at Washington D.C.), getting 30-40 people on the same page to sing and praise the Lord is a miracle of the Holy Spirit.

I love my job and I am very thankful for the service God has allowed for my journey...I am especially blessed by the willingness of Christ-followers to work together in "UNITY" while allowing God to encourage all of us to bring Him glory, honor, and adoration.

You know I love ya - Don

P.S. I don not believe in coexisting...there is only ONE way to true unity and it is through the power of the Cross and Jesus Christ. It is amazing when Christ-followers open their eyes and hearts to His love...anything else is just getting along.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Depth of Knowledge AND Extreme Home Makeover!

"Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!”- Romans 11:33

It is amazing to watch "Extreme Makeover Home Addition." They were in Indianapolis and we don't typically watch this show, but since it was in Indy we watched. Of course, the tears started flowing at the beginning. The show was helping a Dad and his three sons. The dad is big on knowledge and education. It reminded me of this scripture.

I grew up in a home that taught, "learning does not ever stop." In fact, my parents demonstrated to us that most education comes outside of the classroom. I could not agree more with the reality that formal education is essential for a productive citizen...and also in the life of the Christ-follower. I also totally agree that in hard work, service, and true listening (everyday life) we learn the "how" for abundance in living.

This verse also tells me that there is a "depth" in God's wisdom and knowledge. Yet, so many times I try to use my own "know-how" in making choices. God's judgements are unsearchable and His path is beyond imagination. I learned so much at Pacific Christian College and Johnson Bible College. I also learned life skills and trust skills.

I can testify to how God uses our formal education to increase our life exprience education. I learned more in the seven weeks when Matthew was born than in the seven years of college and seminary. In Matthew's birth, open heart surgery, the people we met, the love of so many people, family, a wonderful mother, and a Godly wife...I learned to trust God. God's depth is deeper and it still is overwhelming me today.

"Thank you Father God for the depth of your love, knowledge and wisdom. Thank you for my formal education and thank you for my life education. I bow before you to take me deeper in every part of life. Amen."

You know I love ya - Don

I also think it is pretty cool that Sears paid off the McFarland's mortage. Thanks Extreme Makeover Home Edition for coming to Indianapolis.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Friday funny - God is not hard of hearing!

Ever feel like God is hard of hearing?

A little boy was kneeling beside his bed with his mother and grandmother and softly saying his prayers, "Dear God, please bless Mummy and Daddy and all the family and please give me a good night's sleep."

Suddenly he looked up and shouted, "And don't forget to give me a bicycle for my birthday!!"
"There is no need to shout like that," said his mother. "God isn't hard of hearing."
"No," said the little boy, "but Grandma is."

Happy Friday! Don't forget to laugh at something today. You know I love ya - Don

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Lord...give you Peace!

Ancient Israel greatly treasured the shalom of the Lord. Most often, we translate this word as "peace." It encompassed more than the end of anger between warring nations or tribes. "Shalom" conveyed the idea of total well-being. This peace anchored itself in the security of complete acceptance and pardon from God.

Shalom is knowing the smile and welcoming open arms of His love. It is the total foundation of the Christ-followers life. It is our stronghold of everything we stand for in Christendom. It is the results from a crucified and resurrected Lord. It is peace!

Secure in Jesus is to enjoy all the other blessings too:
1. A Calm Mind and Confident Heart.
2. Friend and family to love and receive love.
3. A good reputation.
4. Provision from God in all we need.
5. The lack of worry.
6. Healthy Eternity.
7. Opportunities to contribute meaningfully in lives.
8. Love when we are not deserving.

Jesus Christ is our shalom! Shalom to you and you know I love ya - Don

Monday, May 11, 2009

Beautiful, Gorgeous, Attractive...what?

He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him. - Isaiah 53:2 (Bible Gateway)

There is a great deal of emphasis in our society on looks. Every other channel is an infomercial on weight loss or skin care or some other improvement pill. People seemed to be so worried about how they look. I have also noticed that we respond to people differently depending on how they look. There is truth in your first impression.

It is said that with in your first three sentences you have been evaluated by your listener. (First impressions) What does that say about the actions of a Christ-follower? It should say that we look to Christ's example...He has no beauty or majesty and nothing in His appearance that would draw us to desire Him. Yet, after His resurrection and the transformation He makes in people's lives, He becomes the most attractive desire we have. We should look beyond the physical and minister to the heart, soul, mind, and strength.

What does this truth say about my actions? I need to work on my health and looks because the world will judge me in how I take care of myself. I need to also put my Jesus glasses on and NOT fall into the trap of being Jesus' only to those who meet my preconceived notion of what is attractive.

"Almighty God, Help me to see the world around me as you see the world. Please help me not to focus on looks, but to focus on the heart and the eternal. You are a great God and it is a joy to serve. May I never take advantage of you or your attraction. You know I love you, Jesus. Amen."

You know I love you too. - Don

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Friday Funny - A Little Late......

A little girl, dressed in her Sunday best, was running as fast as she could, trying not to be late for Bible class. As she ran she prayed,

"Dear Lord, please don't let me be late! Dear Lord, please don't let me be late!"

As she was running and praying, she tripped on a curb
and fell, getting her clothes dirty and tearing her dress.
She got up, brushed herself off, and started running again.
As she ran she once again began to pray,

"Dear Lord, please don't let me be late!...But don't shove me either."

To all our Mom readers, "Happy Mother's Day!" You know I love ya - Don

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Broken before Honor

The eyes of the arrogant man will be humbled and the pride of men
brought low; the LORD alone will be exalted in that day. - Isaiah

"None of us are where we need to be, but, thank God, we are not
where we used to be. Don't look at what you are going through right
now; look at the person you are becoming. We are always in
the process of becoming like Christ."- Joyce Meyer.

Brokenness hurts, but the alternative is much worse. It states in Proverbs 18:12, "Before his downfall a man's heart is proud, but humility comes before honor." Today is the National Day of Prayer, I pray that I will be bendable, pliable, and malleable so that I will become more like Christ in order to HONOR the God that I love. I want to exalt Jesus Christ through my broken pride and healed submission to His AMAZING LOVE!

You know I love ya - Don

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”- James 5 :16
We had our Fresh Touch Prayer Service last night. There were about 25 people at the service. Our goal is to gather as Christ-followers so as to bow our heads and pray. Our format is to pray five prayer points:

1. Honor - Praise and Adoration to God.
2. Grow - Pray Scripture Prayers.
3. Serve - Pray over a specific ministry or

4. Connect - We confess our sin (privately) and offer ourselves to
God in submission.

5. Reach - Pray for others and missionaries all around the
world by name.

Prayer is so important to me. I find it is a great time of leaning on the Lord. Take the words of James and make them your own today. I am.

You know I love and today, I am praying for you as well. - Don

Monday, May 4, 2009

Docking in God's Refuge!

1 In you, O LORD, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame; deliver me in your righteousness. 2 Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me. 3 Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me. 4 Free me from the trap that is set for me, for you are my refuge. 5 Into your hands I commit my spirit; redeem me, O LORD, the God of truth. - Psalm 31

I woke up this morning with a head cold. I also woke up thinking of this scripture. I am not sure if that is related, but it works. My nose itches, my eyes are watering, and my throat is scratchy. (No, you cannot catch it through your computer.) My day is filled with things to do and NOW I have a cold.

I find comfort in God's refuge. Knowing that I am sheltered in the arms of God bring protection. I can figuratively dock my boat in His refuge and the waves of life will not toss or bring turmoil. It is also reassuring that He will never let us be put to shame and that we can be delivered in his righteousness. I understand why Jesus quoted these words while hanging on the cross.

Whatever life throws at us (even head colds)....we can always take refuge in God's abundance and grace. "Thank you God, for loving me today and providing me a refuge in your love, grace and power. May I never take you for granted and always remain faithful to you. In Jesus' name, Amen."

You know I love ya - Don

Friday, May 1, 2009

Friday Fun - Dying Man Needs Help!

It is Friday again.....Gotta Laugh!
On a busy street in New York City, a man hustles across an intersection and is just about makes it to the other side before he’s hit by a bus. He lies dying on the sidewalk as a crowd gathers around. "A priest. Somebody get me a priest!" the man gasps. A policeman checks the crowd, but there is no priest, no minister, no man of God of any kind. "A priest, please!" repeats the dying man. Then out of the crowd steps a little old Jewish man of at least 80 years. "Mr. Policeman," says the man, "I’m not a priest. I’m not even a Catholic. But for 50 years now I’ve been living behind St. Elizabeth’s Catholic Church on First Avenue, and every night I listen to the Catholic litany. Maybe I can be of some comfort to this man." The policeman agrees and brings the gentleman over to where the dying man is lying. He kneels down, leans over the injured and says in a solemn voice: "B-4. I-19. N-38. G-54. O-72...Bingo!"
You Know I Love Ya - Don