“Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard… More The Heavenly City
The other day, a friend of mine wrote me an e-mail requesting that I write an article about something he struggles with (along with anyone else, I think, who has seriously thought about it): truly surrendering your life to God. Why is surrendering our lives to God and his will such a struggle? I believe… More The Real but Irrational Struggle of Surrender
I’ve been meaning to write this article for quite some time now, even before I woke up to the news today of another mass shooting in the United States, this time in Orlando, Florida. It was yet again another reminder that evil, pain and suffering exist and happen not only in “other” parts of the… More Why Does God Allow Pain & Suffering?
There are a lot of things that pass as “Christian” but are actually very unbiblical or unChrist like. Below are ten of my top “pet peeves” that commonly pass as “Christian” but fail the biblical test when examined more closely. Some may surprise you, even might offend you!… More My Top Ten “Christian” Pet Peeves
It’s been just over a year since I moved our family out to Colorado from the East Coast. After six years of pastoring a church in New Jersey, we decided to join with a mission organization called ServeNow. We were moved by the stories and amazed by the impact they were having around the world… More What Now?
“For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by… More The Grace of Giving
One of the core tenants of the Christian faith is the concept of the Trinity; one God in three persons (Father, Son and Holy Spirit). While the word trinity itself is not found in the Bible, the New Testament implicitly and explicitly teaches this idea (Matthew 28:19, Luke 3:21-22, John 14-16, 2 Corinthians 13:14). It… More The Mystery & Reality of the Trinity
“Then Moses summoned Bezalel and Oholiab and every skilled person to whom the Lord had given ability and who was willing to come and do the work. They received from Moses all the offerings the Israelites had brought to carry out the work of constructing the sanctuary. And the people continued to bring freewill offerings… More Reflecting the Triune Nature of God
“As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” At once they left their nets and followed… More Come, Follow Me
“Like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds on a rainy day, so was the radiance around him. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord. When I saw it, I fell facedown, and I heard the voice of one speaking.” -Ezekiel 1:28 “Peter and his companions were very… More The Eternal, Limitless, Beauty of God
“But Jesus said, “Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.” Then the woman, seeing that she could not go unnoticed, came trembling and fell at his feet. In the presence of all the people, she told why she had touched him and how she had been instantly healed. Then he… More Touching God & The Touch of God
The resurrection of Jesus reminds us that this life is not all there is. There is an eternity that awaits us and is rushing upon us. This is good news for the believer in Christ; it is bad news for the unbeliever. It is our very hope as believers; it is the very hope unbelievers are missing.… More Live in Light of Eternity
The other night, my wife and I went out to dinner with new friends of ours. During the course of dinner, conversation began to move to “spiritual things.” The husband explained that he was an “agnostic” and began to put forward the various reasons of why that was so. One of the main “stumbling blocks”… More The Justice of Hell
Psalm 146:5: “Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord their God.” I seem to have a trust issue. For some reason, deep down, I don’t always really live trusting that God will truly provide what is needed, whatever the needs may be. For example, over the… More Our Helper
I have a new message that is burning in my heart. This “new” message is actually however an “old” message (to borrow language from John the apostle: see 1 John). In fact, most self-identified followers of Jesus are familiar with the passage this comes from. It has famously been called “the Great Commission.” Sadly, however,… More Go
“He saw the disciples straining at the oars, because the wind was against them.” (Mark 6:48) An incredible miracle had just happened. Jesus had told his disciples to feed a crowd of over 5,000 people, but all they had was five loaves of bread and two fish. Their initial discouragement and bewilderment turned to overwhelming… More Straining at the Oars (He see’s you!)
In the course of just a year and a half, our girls have attended a Christian school, been home-schooled and now are in a public school. By next school-year it may change again! Which one is right? Which one is right more specifically for a Christian family? Over the years, especially while I was pastoring… More Public, Christian or Homeschool?
I just returned from a very heart-moving and heart-wrenching trip to Nepal (you can read about it here). I had read before going that Nepal was one of the poorest countries in the world yet still was a bit shocked by how poor it really is. The last slum we visited was perhaps the worst… More Poor, yet Rich. Rich, yet Poor.
Recently, after an opportunity to meet one on one with Pastor Jim Cymbala of the Brooklyn Tabernacle in New York, I had the joy of being at their Tuesday night prayer meeting. When a couple thousand people show up on a Tuesday night to pray you know you are in a very special place in… More God’s Presence
ServeNow has just been offered two matching grants for this holiday season to double the impact of each gift given! The first is for $31,900 specifically to rebuild a classroom building for orphaned children in Uganda. We have already completed two buildings this year. But there are over 35 classrooms that need rebuilt for the 3,000… More Three Urgent Needs
Late one night this week I suddenly had it impressed on my mind to write a brief blog article addressing the question: Does God really love me? This same week I heard a short radio recording speaking to this issue and then the founder and current president of ServeNow spoke to this issue at our… More Does God Really Love Me?
Wow. How do you describe the indescribable? How do you capture the raw emotion, the overwhelming of the senses or the stories behind every wrinkle and smile? Words, pictures, even video’s fall short. They can communicate and convey and give meaning…but they are still lacking “flesh.” Similar to the fact that “In the beginning was… More Stories from India
Have you ever wondered what Jesus see’s when he looks at you? Have you ever wondered what he would say to you? One of my favorite accounts in Scripture is when Peter first personally meets Jesus. John 1:42 simply records this: “Jesus looked at him and said: You are Simon son of John. You will… More When Jesus Looks at You
Nepal is one of the poorest countries in the world. Political instability has been a continual reality. But the growth of the church in Nepal over the last 50 years has been remarkable. Now is the time to serve in Nepal! Consider joining me on a trip this December 28th-January 8th to Nepal Click the… More Nepal
Just this week I got back from a trip to Sweden and Ukraine. This was a trip meeting with leaders, board members and partners regarding ServeNow’s ministry and future. One of the most exciting things about to begin this fall is the opening of a bakery in Ukraine for young women at risk of trafficking/prostitution.… More From Trafficking to Training
Ukraine is the largest country in Europe with a population of over 45 million. In 1991 Ukraine declared its independence but recently Russia moved to reclaim Crimea. There continues to be conflict on the Eastern side of Ukraine and close to 1 million people have been displaced. To read about how ServeNow is responding to… More Ukraine
Ezekiel 37:1-3: “The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the… More Can These Bones Live?
I think “waiting on the Lord” is one of the single hardest aspects of the Christian life. Lately, I have been really battling my impatience and frustration over plans seemingly not working out or taking forever to work out! I have been complaining even to the Lord that it so often seems like his timing… More Waiting on the Lord
I think the greatest need within the “church” world is a “recapturing” of or awakening to the “fear of the Lord.” There are so many things I could point to that actually grieves my heart and I believe grieves the Holy Spirit and reveals our desperate need for this reality. For example, I just finished… More The Fear of the Lord
In 2008 Cyclone Nargis devastated a country (Myanmar/Burma) that up to that point I had never heard of before. It was the worst natural disaster in Myanmar’s history. When I heard about this cyclone my heart felt like it was being “slammed” and “overwhelmed” with a compassion I have rarely felt before. I began to… More Floods: A Cry from Myanmar
Today, I read a report from our national director in India where he outlined a strategic process to consider for the future in regard to our work with pastors and churches. Our network of churches has grown to 1,400 in India, Uganda, Ukraine and Nepal in just two years. The potential for working with more… More Why ServeNow?
One of the only benefits and joys of recently driving 1,645 miles from the East Coast back out West to our home in Colorado (with four kids seven and under), was worshiping and praying through the night. There is nothing sweeter than spending time with the Lord and seeing what he reveals of himself and… More A Night with the Lord
This last week we drove thirty hours straight (with some food, restroom and stretching breaks) back to the East Coast from Colorado. And this was with four kids seven and under! Needless to say I’m not particularly looking forward to the drive back! But it was well worth it in being able to spend quality… More 10 “Random” Lessons from this Week
I love how God as our Shepherd is faithful to lead us even when we don’t understand or know the way. I am not the “quickest” sheep in the pen to understand, so I am thankful for verses like Isaiah 42:16 which says: “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along… More Rest Part 2: “Sabbath.”
There have been many good articles, quotes and soul-searching that I have read, heard or seen over the past week in regard to the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize homosexual marriage in the US. I have actually been encouraged and blessed to read and hear what many Christians have been articulating. However, I have also… More Grace & Truth
Over the past few months God has continually been speaking to me about “rest” and how He is our (my) Shepherd who gives rest and in whom we find rest. In fact the relationship between a shepherd and sheep is probably the best and most intimate picture of rest. Sheep by nature are easily frightened… More Rest
The last couple of times I’ve been in airports, I’ve been fascinated to watch people being reunited with family and friends. Twice recently, I went to pick someone up at the airport and as I stood there waiting to catch a sight of those I was there for, I witnessed husbands being reconnected with their… More Airplanes & Airports
A few weeks ago I designed a trip that ended up nothing as I had planned. I had scheduled a trip based around a certain group of people I wanted to meet with, but not one that I wanted to meet with was able too or wanted too. I remember the weekend before I was… More Rerouted by God verse Thwarted By Satan
Proverbs 4:25-26: “Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths of your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.” A few weeks ago, I failed to heed the call, command… More Integrity
I have a vision for seeing what I am calling an “army of servants” or “volunteer ambassadors” raised up to partner with us at ServeNow to accomplish what we believe God has put on our hearts to accomplish. I realized not long after I started working with ServeNow that the passage Jesus stood up and… More An Army of Volunteer Servants!
I wrote a blog article not long ago (The Secret Privilege of a Servant) on Jesus’ first miracle (John 2) and mentioned it is one of my favorite stories. One reason is because of something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. In that story Jesus includes the servants who were “standing by” in the… More Behind the Scenes
Proverbs 16:9 “In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” Proverbs 20:22 “A man’s steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone understand his own way?” These two Proverbs have been very meaningful and comforting to me lately in the midst of many changes, decisions and experiences (with… More Trusting God to Direct Our Steps
I used to have many misconceptions about the poor. I’ve also had prejudices against the “rich” for that matter. For example, I used to think it was wrong to be wealthy and that all poor people were miserable. I’ve since realized that there are rich people who are very generous and humble (and that it’s… More What I have Learned from the “Poor”
I just got back from my third trip to the beautiful Asian country of Myanmar (Burma) and wanted to take a moment to share a few highlights in this blog article. I was thankful to have with me a friend from NJ who is gifted musically and vocally and who the kids/people were so happy… More Myanmar (Burma) 2015 Mission Trip
“Passion” week is upon us, where many Christians will be thinking a little deeper on the sacrifice Jesus made for us on the cross (a very healthy practice) and then celebrating the fact that He has risen from the dead in power (a life-changing reality!). This time of the year was always my favorite as… More The Cross, the Burial & the Resurrection
“Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked Jesus to help her. So he bent over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her. She got up at once and began to wait on them.” Luke 4:38-39 I love this very short “testimony” for several reasons. As others have pointed… More Saved to Serve
There are two separate stories in the gospel accounts of Jesus miraculously feeding a multiple of people. In Mark’s gospel account the first is found in chapter six and the second is found in chapter eight. The first time he fed five-thousand men (not including the women & children!), the second time four-thousand men. One… More How many Loaves do you Have?
As I write this it is a Sunday morning. Many people will on this day be “going” to a church service. But why? For what reasons? What is the greatest reason? Fellowship? Obligation? Routine? To hear an inspiring message from a pastor? Or is it because of a desire to be with and be in… More Desiring His Presence
One of my favorite stories in the bible is actually the first miracle Jesus performed. It’s found in John chapter 2 and it is the story of when Jesus turned water into wine at a wedding He and his disciples had been invited too. This is what happened: “On the third day a wedding took… More The Secret Privilege of a Servant
This year (2015), ServeNow is offering ten different opportunities (four of which I will be leading!) to go on a short-term missions trip to interesting and also very needy places in India, Nepal, Uganda or the Ukraine where there is tremendous opportunity to make a tangible difference in people’s lives. In this blog article I… More Why a Missions Trip?