Thursday, May 31, 2012


We at Memorial Drive have encountered a wonderful experience of meeting God in Spirit form.  We are and will continue to grow into interactive work with Him.

I took three stabs at teaching about the Holy Spirit at Memorial beginning in the late 70s.  Each quarter quickly jumped to the track of what He doesn't do and we never regained focus beyond our inherited fears.

The fourth try was different.  I realized my mistake of the first three takes and announced to the class we would not entertain any comments as to what the Spirit doesn't do.  We were well versed there.  What we wanted to research was what He does do.

Due to His authentic leading, I did not teach the class.  The class taught me.  We probed the Word of God together for it was our source....of course.  I would toss a bone and the class would think together.  They began to make such astute observations, my time as the teacher during class was to jot down their findings.

The result of those morsels was a book that I first titled, The Holy Spirit Makes No Earthy Sense.  I drew heavy criticism for the title and more criticism for the content.  To explain, the title implies He makes heavenly sense; but not earthly.  For the content?  Well...I just had to take it and move on.

The result of God's breaking in to this congregation in Spirit form continues to be one of over-joy.  Fear of where this would lead has been quenched by His productivity as promised in Galatians 5:22-23.  We are growing in patience, kindness, love, etc.  It is His trademark among His people.

Finally, one of the greater gifts of this study is to realize how free we are to yield control of every nook and cranny of kingdom work.  We sow.  We try.  If it does work, we tell God, Thank you. If it doesn't work, we tell God, Thank you.

The over-joy of the Holy Spirit allows us to engage in a new world that is far above our heads.

(BTW--The Holy Spirit Makes No Earthly Sense didn't sell well.  Howard Publishing eventually shipped the unsellables to South Africa and the book went out of print.  My son Tim was on a mission trip to SA years later.  The people he stayed with were intrigued by this new book they had purchased.  It was this book.  Soon after, I began to get an abundant amount of calls for the book that was now out of print. 

I rewrote the book putting it in workbook form and renamed it Empowering the Ordinary (The Holy Spirit Helping Inadequate Believers.)  I have self-published the book these past twenty years and cannot keep them in stock.  Small groups are studying this workbook all over the country and in other nations.  It has been translated into Russian. seems the Holy Spirit is working among us!  How fun!)

Wednesday, May 30, 2012


What is one to do with those in our circles who simply grate on our nerves?  You know the type; they think weird.  Silly.  Foolish.  Strange.  Out-of-sync.  Ignorant.  Even obstinate or, worse yet, obnoxious. 

What to do? 

They don't seem to go away.  At times it seems they even multiply.  What's that all about?

I would recommend two ways to handle such odd personalities:
  1. Believe in them by noting the great qualities each possesses for each has gifts from God that we need.
  2. Realize first and foremost that each of us is annoying to several others and they don't know what to do with us either.
May the love of God fill our hearts with gratitude rather than a sense of superiority for there is only one who is superior and his name is Jesus.  I have come to realize that I am ALWAYS the least in any room.  I sense this 100% of the time.  I am the low man on the rung. 

This does not bother me.  Rather, I feel grateful any would let me into the room.  Rejection doesn't bother me as it once did for I now know I've earned it.  I am a nobody; just like Paul felt in II Cor. 12:11.

Blessings to you as you find God lets you fit into His day!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


Jeanne Guyon wrote Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ (Originally A Method of Prayer) that first appeared in France around 1685.  It is guestimated that this book is one of the most influential ever written. 

It is one of my favorites.

I am rereading it and it remains a meaningful volume as it calls us to deeper union with Him.

This book eventually made its way to Louis XIV for the purpose of tattling on her.  Guyon was immediately arrested and imprisoned.  Many of her books were gathered and burned.  Not surprisingly, her influence grew even more.

Guyon's writing heavily influenced the Quakers and then a young man named John Wesley.  Any familiar with the deep writings of Jesse Penn-Lewis would find it no surprise that Guyon's concepts are buried within. 

During the 1920s this book made its way to China.  It had a profound impact on the shaping of the heart of one we would know as Watchman Nee. 

Fenelon?  Count Zinzendorf?  And, Hudson Taylor?  All influenced by Guyon.

While these writings and this story carry fascination to me, the greater encouragement comes for all to realize we have the ability in Christ to shine over great distances and even centuries.  Know Him and give Him room to extend through you into unimaginable regions of time and pockets of influence!

Monday, May 28, 2012


The American church is long on activity and short on love for God.  Even much of our past evangelistic clarions have called for preparation to go to heaven; not to dwell upon knowing God. 

Thus, herds gather to do church stuff in church stuff ways with that inner yearn that our names be among those drawn from Father's hat at the Judgment.

Are we a people whose lips flow with public thankfulness and gratitude throughout our business days?  Or are we, in general, more apt to faithfully assemble offering our stamp of approval at the end of services? 

Strange isn't it that the greatest commandment of loving God--along with the second--are met with basic yawn for want of hearing what's working among us and how we can go do it in a way that generates creative interest.

Michael Molinos charged, Experience has shown that many believers, even after fifty years of this external exercise, are void of God.  They are also full of themselves, having nothing of the true spiritual man except the name. 

Our timid voices in song and our sterile body language during worship and praise--myself very much included--begs for thought to be given as to how we become a people intensely saturated with the love of God. 

Such sacrifices of public praise designed to give vibrant honor to Him will leave us blessed while expanding a contagion within our needy communities.

Sunday, May 27, 2012



Nearly every church I know battles a choking power called traditionalism.  Some congregations make the adjustments; but more fight for the-way-we've-always-done-it air 'til their dying breath.  For these there is always that many are called but few are chosen passage coupled with the song God Bless the Narrow Way.

Some authors have been devoted to writing against change in the church and change agents.  Shame on them.

God is the Lord of an eternal system which includes a great amount of perpetual new.  He created creation and then calls all to become a new creation.

Archaic habit is not faithfulness.  It is a death trap held tightly in the grip of comfort of any generation.....including mine. Those who want change today will not want it tomorrow.  A new generation, therefore, will have to take up the same battle each has encountered along the way.

Honestly, I like how church is now.  Yet, as one turning 65 I must evaluate whether I am new day by day or stuck.  Stuck isn't good. 

New doesn't imply skirting the Word.  It means the opposite; continually maturing in it.  New is not a three letter word from Satan.  Rather it is a great hope for all generations.

Archaicism isn't a mark of "still being faithful", my friend.  It is a mark of rigidity and unopenness to His Holy Word.  New or few....stuck in tradition is not a sign of faithfulness.

Saturday, May 26, 2012


I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and shall find pasture.

Call me silly; but when I first became a student of the Word, I didn't like this passage.  It gave us too much freedom; in and out.  I guess mom's scolding words still rang in my head, Either get in or out; but quit opening that door!

Plus, with the adamant teaching in my newly found church that one could never be sure one is saved, I felt the Bible would be better off to say, Get in and stay in for you might go back out an be lost.  After all, if one can be born again one can assuredly be lost again!

Ah, but the task of freedom and her radiant challenges to us narrow ones.  Freedom, in and out, authorized by Him. 

I marvel at the new life at Memorial Drive over these past ten or twelve years.  As far as human engagement, I see the positive difference is created by our elders.  They have not only led us, they have allowed themselves the freedom to grow in the Spirit with us. 

Our four assertively lead with desire to get on board with the Spirit; regardless of fear or the threat of fear from others.  These men are simply willing to go in and out with God's possibilities just to see if we might strike oil out in some of those pastures.  Too many in their position keep tight reign on church efforts in the name of responsibility; yea even logic.

Yet, the Door Shepherd said I want that in and out flexibility in my sheep to find; to discover.  The church discovers treasures of Father when we are given permission to search, to roam, and to simpy try.  I am thankful for all elders like ours who remain eager to give-it-a-try with the assurance some of our ideas are ridiculous while others are just ridiculous enough they probably will work.

I didn't like John 10:9 because I thought is gave the sheep too much flexibility to move about and they would get in trouble.  Ah, once again my perception was different than what Jesus had in mind.  Go figure.

Friday, May 25, 2012


For millions of Christians God is no more real than He is to the non-Christian.  They go through life trying to love an ideal and be loyal to a mere principle. 

A. W. Tozer made the above statement--thirty years ago.  I think it to be stunning, alarming, and true.

How can this be?

I'll make a guess.

From experience, I believe God has become terribly unreal in churches because congregational doctrines have become the god-of-the-mind.  What we believe has trumped Who we believe.  While organizational arrangement excites the worker, Father has slipped in the religious rankings.

We are in deep need of experiencing God--the Lively One, the Profound One, the Active One.

Every congregation and each individual within must perpetually check ourselves that we not have taken on habit-rot.  Personally, I am very comfortable with our church as is.  Evidently, the younger generations do not find my comfort zone to offer an Experiential God.

Questions must be asked.  Are these leaving us because of their true hunger for Him or simply because we have failed to design church around their preferred comfort zones?  One thing for sure is that we must be a people that call all to know God and His suffering Son and His abiding Holy Spirit. 

Without the Three, we are merely a bulky, sluggish, conglomerate of we.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


God isn't like us....but He surely likes us.

His ways aren't our ways....but He desires we make His ways ours.

Only God knows full life...we don't.

We each believe life is best guestimated and maneuvered via our own personal wisdom...but it isn't.  How often we wish our comrades could gage needs and projects the way we see them.  We assume we are superior to one another.  Yet, not one of us is smart enough, sharp enough, nor spiritual enough to boast of our natural insights.

Only God....only God seems to have a grasp for the inner workings of true and abundant life.  And well He should.  He designed every one of them.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


I battled depression severely my first decade and a half at Memorial Drive.  It was a very good experience because I learned from that frustrating pit of the working hand of God.  I was forced to lean upon Him for my efforts were often void of effectiveness.  I could fix nothing.

But the Word changed my world.  It pulled me into believing He could when I couldn't and that He willed such to be my new life.  The following passages changed my whole more depression. 

Concerns?  Yes. 

Emotional and mental imprisonment?  No more!

Phil. 4:4-9
Rom. 9:16
Ex. 14:13-14
Ps. 46:10
Isa. 40:28-31
Eph. 3:20
I Cor. 1:26-31
I Cor. 3:7
I Cor. 12:11
II Cor. 3:4-6
II Cor. 4:16-18
II Cor. 10:12
II Cor. 12:9-9-11
I Cor. 1:18-20
Phil. 4:11-13

Monday, May 21, 2012


I see believers scurry to engage in meaningful works.  I hear critics toss random opinions this way and that.  Surely I fit into both categories at times.

The more I observe and the more I listen, one thing is strikingly apparent.  There remains an extreme need for all of the professors and laborers to better know this one we call Jesus.

America is suffering damaging drought of the human spirit because He has been flatly rejected both in and out of the church.  Unbelievers....well they don't believe Him.  Believers....well we are too quick to suffer distraction from the one who holds hope.

The good news is we are free to return to the Well.  It is clear our nation thirsts for something more than our earthly abundance.  May awaken to the great need.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Nuclear man does not live with an ideology.  He has shifted from the fixed and total forms of an ideology to more fluid ideological fragments.  One of the most visible phenomena of our time is the tremendous exposure of man to divergent and often contrasting ideas, traditions, religious convictions, and lifestyles. 

Through mass media he is confronted with the most paradoxical human experiences.  He is confronted not only with the most elaborate and expensive attempts to save the life of one man by heart transplantation, but also with the powerlessness of the world to help when thousands of people die from lack of food. 

He is confronted no only with man's ability to travel rapidly to another planet, but also with his hopeless impotence to end a senseless war on this planet.  He is confronted not only with high-level discussions about human rights and Christian morality, but also with torture chambers in Brazil, Greece, and Vietnam. 

He is confronted not only with incredible ingenuity that can build dams, change riverbeds and create fertile new lands, but also with earthquakes, floods, and tornadoes that can ruin in one hour more than man can build in a generation. 

A man confronted with all this and trying to make sense of it cannot possibly deceive himself with one idea, concept, or thought system which could bring these contrasting images together into one consistent outlook on life.

The above piece was written by Henri 1972....40 years ago.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


It appears that God is working with us at Memorial Drive....and we are simply elated.  Along with that...we are grateful.

As a church family we make efforts here and there to initiate various community works.  Some seem to do all right.  Others, though, seem to be as garden seeds planted in the wrong time of the moon....lots of flowery leaves with hardly any fruit.  I believe Jesus even noticed a tree of such description.

The good news is that some of our labors have taken root in the soil God would multiply.

It is quite a rewarding joy to see our efforts with both the homeless and the food pantry making a difference for others.  With the former, food and water is taken to them.  The latter has a long line of community members coming to us.  This surely blesses those serving directly and then the by-product of touching the remainder of the congregation indirectly is a massive kingdom perk.

Another strategic move is a host of our members mentoring and extending leadership at the nearby public Lindberg Elementary School.  Where this began with a hint of sponsorship, we now have multiple ministries going throughout the year; plus one of ours is now one of the teachers and another is an aid.

An exciting element is that our family gatherings on Sundays and Wednesdays find many of these new community friends sitting beside us.  They bless us!  We wanted them.  We need them.  We are them and they are us.  Ah, at last we are us.

These dear folks perpetually open our hearts to the basic love nature of Jesus.  All of this fits; it seems rather natural.  He cared gobs for the underdog strugglers.  To us it seems we are never more like him than when we are serving; even in zones we don't know how to operate.  He just continues to do His work.

We sense his heart among us.  Friendships are developing.  Baptisms are happening.  Awe is arising.

One of my favorite concepts about what His grace is doing for this church is that all of these ministries are not a we and them; but a clear we are us.

Monday, May 14, 2012


I've not done well in overall life with the negatives.  Other's and my own wear, no grind, on me.  Hurtful comments, blank stares, and sinful acts indeed put the strain in our walk.

We must learn to let it go.  If someone else or our own misstep, we must not allow these culprits to take us hostage.  These must not be given permission to roost in our hearts.

I fought this for a long, long time.  I either rehearsed the inflictions of others or beat upon myself for my sheer lack.  But....I would not drop either mentally, emotionally, or spiritually.  I drug the baggage---the every increasing baggage---with me day after day.  Bummer.

And then God taught me to focus on those items going right.  He did not ask for my denial of the difficult.  He insisted I think upon the good, the excellent, the lovely, etc. of Philippians 4:4-9.  Paul's words are life changers.....walk remodelers....for God's peace that passes understanding begins too roost in our hearts; not the negative junk.

A new world awaits all to be both explored and experienced.  It is a choice.  I say we go for it!

Sunday, May 13, 2012


Conversion to Jesus thrusts us into a perpetual new normal.

Don't let scrapes and bruises pull your eyes away from the awe of His glory.

We live in a most amazing kingdom. 

Explode in this life.  Run wide-eyed into His schemes that human logic could never calculate.

Go for it!

Saturday, May 12, 2012


As long as there is God there is reason to hope.  Another way of saying it is THERE IS ALWAYS ABSOLUTE REASON TO HOPE.

Hope shakes a dead world.  Hope rocks an empty one as well.  We are to carry such an inextinguishable torch.  As long as there is God, there is always reason to believe.  As long as the grave remains empty, there is always reason to defy all odds by the application of faith.

In hope against hope Abraham believed; so says Romans 4:18.  When one's hope cancels opposing hope, there is still reason to believe God's promises.  Abraham believed such hope of he and Sarah having a child in old age.  Sarah pushed back with a cancelling laughter.  His hope against her hope; and God delivered His promise.

Our failures are largely when we abort Abraham's faith and take on Sarah's.  Our hopelessness cancels true hope.  We read the day's logic.  We see both people and circumstances and then pass assumed superior judgment.  Yet if such assessment is outside the realm of defiant faith, we lost another battle.

God's story is all about hope.  Paul assured us that hope does not disappoint because the love of God has been poured out within our very hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.  What difference does the Holy Spirit make in this culture?  In this age of believing?

He gives us a defiant hope that will not quake in the midst of betrayal, disappointment, or opposition.  We have been handed reason to believe when others' hope would cancel ours.  From Abraham becoming a father at great grandparent age to Jesus coming back from the dead, we have a call from God to walk by defiant faith.

Romans 4:17-25.
Let's roll!

Friday, May 11, 2012


One week from Sunday I will have the privilege of addressing the high school graduating class in my hometown.  This is always a big deal to me.  Not only is the trip nostalgic; the opportunity to share something meaningful to this group is both fascinating and breathtaking.  Wowee!

One of the things I want to cover is the sheer friendship to be found in failure.  Of course, the obvious reason this must be pointed out is that nobody wants it.  Yet, failure is one of our greatest commodities.

Failure blesses as it keeps our thinking and determining faculties engaged.  We must grow in understanding as to how to handle the dilemma at hand.  Antonio Porchia said, A door opens to me.  I go in and am faced with a hundred closed doors.

One of my most significant characteristics is how many times I have failed.  I failed in temperament in delivering the Word in sermons.  My anger overrode His call.  I have failed in organization, in friendship, in husbanding and parenting, in preparation and deliverance, and by yielding to becoming what others wanted me to be instead of what He was thinking.

I know of no other man in my position in life who has failed more. 

However, I am not discouraged.  Rather, I am glad I get to be me.  I have learned through this villain called failure and advantaged myself by using him as my fuel.  Through the angst of failure I have learned how real people---from beneath bridge to atop celeb status--hurt. 

I found Jesus to be the only source of rescue.  May I ask how he got to such a position?  Well, not via a Sheriff's badge handed to him by the Holy Spirit.  He learned by the channels of disappointment and pain; even to the extent he was hung out to publicly die as the community's greatest fraudulent failure.

We must learn that this greatest influence nobody wants is precisely what we must have in our hearts in order to connect to a world gasping for life.  Henri Nouwen spoke of this most accurately.

For the minister is called to recognize the sufferings of his time in his own heart and make that recognition the starting point of his service.  Whether he tries to enter into a dislocated world, relate to a convulsive generation, or speak to a dying man, his service will not be perceived as authentic unless it comes from a heart wounded by the suffering about which he speaks.

We can spend hours in academics and years in comparative languages.  There can be yearning for accomplishment and grappling for success.  All the while a friend stands in the wings that we address as our absolute foe.  Nobody wants this guy.  He is known as failure.

But for the victor....we must let him teach us.

Thursday, May 10, 2012


Could it be our greatest challenge will always be the foremost commandment; to love God?

I know this may expose me for the weakness all about me and of me, but it was a long time coming that I really loved God. 

During my early years after conversion in 1970 I was like a new Mormon rushing about American cemeteries gathering family lineage from tombstones.  I was thrilled over the Restoration Movement; not the goal of it, but the historical marvel.

And then the being the only ones right, of course, is enamoring to a young convert who knew basically little about religion other than the B word....BORING.  Thus, I quickly offended every relative at every family gathering for their stupidity had become remarkable to the new me.

Yet through the years, God has chosen to be kind to me.  His grace is both immeasurable as well as indescribable.  I have learned.  I am not called to love the things of the kingdom or the notables of the church without first being crazy about Him.

And...I am.

I no longer talk to Him; but have daily dialog with Him.  God gets the credit for anything which might prove productive in my life.  It is God who is to be honored and adored. 

And this I have learned.  When there is no relationship, there is no worship.  As one of our elders accurately points out, there must be an intense romance between God and the believer.

Is the love there?  Debater?  Organizer?  Preacher?  Elder?  If the love isn't there, you now might weigh this prioritorial call from the Word once again.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012


Have you ever pondered the term news?  Is such not merely the plural of new?

The spirit of man seems to have been blessed by the Creator to hunger for the new(s). hungers for the fresh, the current, and the contemporary.  Our happiest days are when they are filled with new(s) vs old; new(er) car, new clothes, and new(er) house.  We live to obtain the news.

Isn't God's kingdom all about the news?  New life, new song, new day by day?

The concept of Restoration is only right when it leads us to the news.  Even the word GOSPEL means too good of new(s) to be true! 

So here's what I experience in the church and in the kingdom.  The news (those newer and newest items) are the very things for which the soul hungers.  We are built upon growing toward the news of life.

Where society has been acclimated to believe the morning papers and the 5:00 News on TV are the news of the moment; not true.  The real news are the new things God plants in the believers heart which can find no satisfaction in the old of the past; regardless of how we drag it along and shine it up as current.

Take a look at the new(er) generations.  What are we experiencing?  In many churches they are leaving.  We aren't handed a task of pacifying these.  We are very challenged, though, to estimate what it is among us we like that is old as well as satisfying and consider if there are many more new(s) needed which would authentically be from the Spirit of God.

Monday, May 07, 2012


Chip and Dan Heath wrote a book a few years back titled Switch (How to Change Things When Change is Hard).  One connected to Stanford University and the other to Duke, these brothers are a part of the Churches of Christ tradition.  Their publications are brilliant.

Chip and Dan wrote of a change that took place at Lovelace Hospital in Albuquerque under the guidance of Kathleen Davis, a registered nurse, and Susan Wood, a consultant who specialized in Appreciative Inquiry; a process for changing organizations by studying what's working rather than what's not.

Since this hospital had a rather high turnover rate, Wood asked the nurses what made their jobs satisfying.  She recalled, These nurses were beaten down and overworked, but as soon as we started them in a conversation about what they were good at, the tone changed.  Not only did the hospital observe immediate satisfaction among the nursing staff, surveys indicated this satisfaction has spread to the patients as well.

Eight years ago I determined to become a different and improved leader at Memorial Drive.  I decided to let our staff and our elders hear me speak of their value to this flock.  True, not one of these men is perfect for who is?  But each is ideal; highly effective, powerful, important, admired, and loved.

I have a question I like to toss, Do you know what I like about you?  No one has a law against hearing what is good about himself.  No one.

True, there are many ways to make many changes.  We are about improvement day by day.  I have found that bragging to our staff about our staff is both important and productive. 

If you want to see things change in your line of work, try what the nurses did.  Speak of what it is your colleagues are good at....and see if God doesn't keep His promise of Ephesians 4:30 and following.  Maybe we, too, would do well to speak of what's working.

Sunday, May 06, 2012


One buzz phrase among us is Spiritual Formation.  It is a good thing.  Each time I hear it referenced it is usually by someone I greatly admire.  And surely these proponents can see huge gaps in me as my years of service missed the blessings these guys and gals embrace of valuable insight.

In revisiting II Cor. 12:5-11 recently, the thought occurred to me that Spiritual Formation is most definitely embedded within this text.  Suffering and difficulties and persecution are robust necessities of our spiritual grooming.  The benefits are about endurance coupled with the underlying truth one will learn to not run away from disappointment or disruption. 

To dismiss these basic grooming tools is to talk the talk and yet fail to be spiritually formed.

Spiritual Formation is central to discipleship.  Discipleship is keyed off of discipline.  Discipline is the School of Hard Knocks in the kingdom that trains ambitious men and women to endure.  Jesus is our Master example.  He would not quit and when opponents did away with him Father brought him back.

The fundamental concept from the SoHK is one thing; learning to not get our way.  (Sorry, folks, it's a bummer isn't it?)

Negative committees and contolling leaders and local naggers and narrow harpers will eventually do away with us...and well...this should happen to us.  If we are going to learn to hold on---not give up---we will only do so through the church boot camp of extreme stress.  This is a blessing; not the curse initially assumed

In my early years I badly wanted to be somebody; a Charles Coil, a Marvin, or a McGuiggan.  But I was stuck with me and this wasn't enough to be a somebody.

Yet, this Corinthian text declares that Paul's self-assessment was he was a nobody.  I believe it of him for he had been spiritually formed.  Now I believe it of myself.  I am more of a nobody than Paul...and do you know what?  I don't mind it at all.  It is the truth and now I am freed from the slavery of being someone I am not.

Spiritual Formation is a relatively new term among us over the past couple of decades.  Yet, the rugged dog-days of not getting our way has been around a bit longer.  The moments are friends to those serious about learning the Master plan.

After my counsel sought by them, I have pleaded with many a good man to not give up his preaching call.  Each would write me with explanation that it was just too difficult, unfair, and dark where they served.  Yes....I agree with their assessment...but not their conclusion. 

Rough times are never an occasion to quit.  They are always the inspiration to let such trauma and frustration serve as yet another Spiritual Formation class.  These are the best training schools....and so often....they are free.

In Winston Churchill's words upon post World War II, Never, never, never give up.  Should you be serious about Spiritual Formation, begin by noting the training courses you tried to escape.  Don't sigh in frustration.  Smile in this learning process. 

I'm still going to school.

Saturday, May 05, 2012


I'm home!

I'm without a lot of sleep; yet my spirit is filled to the brim with gratitude for my trip to Pepperdine.

Something's going on.  I first noticed it at the Tulsa Workshop and then again this week at the lectures along the western shore. 

That something is God.  He is going on. 

When speakers comments are based upon the Word and one after another seems to speak the same language, God is going on.  There is a harmony without cynicism present.  There is a willingness to dream without caution from the business mind these days.

Whether Rick or Dusty or Randy or Jeff or Monte or Jerry or others, the theme just kept building.  The Pepperdine event was another touch of the Holy Spirit continuation of kingdom reality.

For me, I'm just getting started in ministry. surely is encouraging to get to learn beside and among a segment of Christianity that insists upon holding fast to the Word of God rather than the divisive traditions of men.

A great week.  I'm wonderfully exhausted!

Friday, May 04, 2012


In a few hours history will note a the final Pepperdine Lectures presentation by Jerry Rushford as he tops off his thirty years of directing this most popular and productive kingdom event.  I await with great anticipation.

For three decades this man has availed himself to the living and breathing God for guidance, direction, and leadership.  For three decades the churches of Christ have been moved to higher ground by messengers delivering powerful words from the Word...year after year and lecture after these most inspiring themes arose from Jerry's Spirit-sensitive mind.

I am like a kid knowing I am about to be taken to the game tonight.  Yet, this event isn't a game; it will be an historic moment of God once again using one of His more popular tools....Jerry.

I've prayed for this friend all week.  I have wept as I feel the emotion tonight will sky-rocket into such soaring levels that I just hope my friend can hold together.  I can't wait to see how this man will be honored.  It will be a big deal....and a very deserved deal.

Jerry are a good man.....and I'm proud of your moment where this segment of our church families can give you profound applause and recognition!  I salute you!

Thursday, May 03, 2012


Anonymous Anonymous said...
I'm confused. To what are you referring when you say "narrow and squint-eyed formulas" that have been added to the Word of God? Please expand on that if you will.
I'm not surprised I would be confusing.  I surely have the ability to be unclear. Let me mention a couple of things that have shown up in our work as if God's Word teaches such.
  1. In giving God your best, women cannot wear pantsuits.
  2. It is not biblical that songs be sung during communion.
  3. You cannot bounced on your toes when singing in church.  How do you expect your kids to follow God when you behave like that in church?
  4. Collections for the Lord's work cannot be taken on any day other than Sunday.
  5. Matters of some announcements under suspicion must be done before the opening prayer or after the closing one to please God.
  6. Only the KJV is God's true version of the Bible.
  7. Those who raise their hands in services are Pentecostal.
  8. Two congregations cannot sponsor one work.
  9. Pepperdine, ACU, and the Tulsa Workshop fail to follow the Word of God.
  10. It is not scriptural to listen to Christian music on the radio that involves instruments.
  11. It is not scriptural that boys and girls mix swim.
  12. The Holy Spirit only works through the Word.
  13. If "Church of Christ" isn't over the door, it isn't a true church.
  14. The divorced are second class church members.
I'm sure readers have others to add.  What would be a few you see?