September 16



We have a culture of performance based lives and that mind set has crept into the church to create a performance based faith.  Our faith should rest on the finished work of Christ and not our religious performance.  Our faith is based upon a relationship that has been reconciled through the death of Jesus Christ and the blood He shed for our redemption.

We are to be doers of the word and not merely hearers who delude themselves, but if our doing is a matter of a performance based faith, we have denied true faith and fallen from grace.  We’ve not lost our salvation, but we have stepped out from under God’s umbrella of sufficient grace.  All the performance in the world will not bring us the desired results we seek if we strive in performing for our acceptance.

Performance based faith and a love relationship cannot coexist.  There is no relationship that can withstand the expectations that are placed within the guidelines of performance.  We will always be left wondering if we’ve done enough or if what we have done is good enough.  With the questions and doubts of our acceptance hanging over our head the heart lacks the freedom to receive real love much less give it away.

If you are part of a church that is dominated by performance based faith; unity will never be achieved, true fellowship (koinonia) will only be superficial and the presence and glory of God will become a cliché.

Symptoms of performance based faith can be seen within a church by the increasing and repetitious set of programs that are focused upon certain desired results, but lack the evidence of deepening relationships.  When we resort to performance to justify our reverential worship, we’ve exchanged the glory of God for the image and glory of man’s own making and God will give us over to our mundane performance based faith.  2 Chron 7:14 “and My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways (turn from their performance based faith), then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

Gal 2:20-21 “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered Himself up for me. 21 “I do not nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the Law, then Christ died needlessly.”  The life that we now live we live by faith, a faith that is not based upon performance, but by His grace.  Our righteousness doesn’t come by performing the Law, but by the perfect performance based faith of Jesus Christ who completed the work of righteousness on the cross.  Rom 8:3-4 “For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.”

Performance based faith was nailed to the cross; why would you want to take it down and live in bondage again?!



August 31



Everyday has its own conflict, but the hidden area of inner turmoil can lead to the greatest struggle and the most painful end result. We convince ourselves because it is hidden from those around us that we can continue to justify and redefine the reality of our problem. The heart can be so deceiving! Jer. 17:9 “The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it?

Self-justification is the cancer of every man’s heart and is rebellion against God Himself. Rom.10:2-3 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge. 3 For not knowing about God’s righteousness, and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. We can have a zeal for God, yet that zeal is nothing more than our feeble attempt to self-justify ourselves before God as we seek to establish our own righteousness.

Conviction and guilt are the pre-cursors of every man’s attempt to justify his inner turmoil. We see this in the rich young ruler’s response in his conversation with Jesus on how he could obtain eternal life. He gives the right answer to what the Law said, but then became convicted by his own answer when Jesus said to do this and you will live. Luke 10:29-30 But wishing to justify himself, he said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?

Even Jesus’ own disciples struggled with this inner turmoil of self-justification. Jesus tells them that one of them would soon betray Him. They all began to question Him whether or not they could be the one to do such a horrible thing. But, as their day progressed they found themselves debating with one another who would be the greatest in the kingdom of God. Their inner turmoil of conviction and guilt led to them to establishing their own righteous standing with the Father.

When we resort to self-justification there is no peace; thus inner turmoil. Rom 8:6-8 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, 7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so; 8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

The answer to our conflict is the finished work of Christ. 1 John 1:7-9 but if we walk in the light as He Himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Our inner turmoil needs the intervention of God’s love and grace within the inner man. Eph. 3:14-19 For this reason, I bow my knees before the Father, 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name, 16 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man; 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.

To know the love of Christ brings peace to our inner turmoil!

July 11



Lives matter! What has happened in our society that we have become so divisive and motivated by anger? When there are circumstances that are wrong within our communities and nation we should be angry with what is happening, but our anger should never be turned onto other people! Why? Because lives matter! When there is injustice, stand up and fight for justice, but the fight should never come to the place that we want physical harm to come to another person! Why? Because lives matter! The very thing that we are crying out for we violate by our actions toward one another.

The divisiveness in our country and around the world for that matter is nothing more than history repeating itself. When God saw that every thought and intention of man’s heart was evil, He brought the flood to cleanse His creation and start over. It wasn’t too long after that, His creation once again had reached the boiling point where they had become so self-absorbed with themselves that He brought judgement upon the land once again. Time and time again our selfishness brings on our demise.

God describes man’s condition in this way; Judg. 17:6 …every man did what was right in his own eyes. When we no longer acknowledge God and when we no longer have absolutes that establish value and worth; we become a house divided. Each man does what is right in his own eyes! The result? Chaos! We become a people and a nation where lives don’t matter!

We profess to be a people of tolerance, but when man does what is right in his own eyes the scales of tolerance become unbalanced and corrupt. The definition of tolerance comes from those who are in power or who are making the most noise. Lives matter only if you are on the right side of those holding the microphone at the time.

Lives matter not because we have convinced ourselves that our group matters more than anyone else’s, but lives matter because we are created by God! Lives matter based upon the fact that we were all enemies of God because of our sin. Yet in spite of our sin He sent His only Son to die on the cross paying the price for those sins and reconciling us into a loving relationship with Him once again.

When we live our lives out of the love, grace and mercy we have been given, other lives matter! Reconciliation is found where lives matter! 2 Cor. 5:14-16 For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; 15 and He died for all, that they who live should no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf. 16 Therefore from now on we recognize no man according to the flesh; 2 Cor. 5:19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

When God’s love controls us we realize we no longer live for ourselves and we no longer look at man according to the flesh. Reconciliation becomes our banner because lives matter!


July 7



Jesus’ proclamation of I am the door was controversial in His day as well as ours. Whatever other doors may exist in the imaginations and convictions of others, Jesus’ description of Himself as I am the door was designating Himself as the only door that mattered in life.

When people choose other doors other than Jesus who is the door they have no guarantees what will be awaiting them on the other side. As a matter of fact, we are warned what is waiting behind the door we choose other than Jesus. Gen 4:7-8 “If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.” Jesus said, I am the way the truth and the life (I am the door) and to choose any other door but Him leaves us vulnerable to the sin crouching behind the other door.

The only door that is safe enough to pass through is the door covered in His blood. Ex 12:23-24 For the Lord will pass through to smite the Egyptians; and when He sees the blood on the lintel and on the two doorposts, the Lord will pass over the door and will not allow the destroyer to come in to your houses to smite you. The door that is freely opened to us is the door that hung between two thieves. The blood that ran down the cross that day opened the door to eternal life for those who by faith would enter! One thief walked through that day and the other chose not to!

There are two sides to every door. On one side you will find light, refuge, warmth, love and acceptance. On the other darkness, uncertainty, cold, fear and rejection. It would seem that choosing the right door would be a simple choice, but Scripture says otherwise. Luke 13:23-25 And someone said to Him, “Lord, are there just a few who are being saved?” And He said to them, 24 “Strive to enter by the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 “Once the head of the house gets up and shuts the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock on the door, saying, ‘Lord, open up to us!’ then He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from.

Many are seeking the right door to enter, but many will be unable to find it. They like many people who remodel homes will desire to widen the door for easier access, and in doing so they make the door something it’s not (making Jesus who He’s not). Any other door, but Jesus is a deception. No other door leads to eternal life. John 14:5-6 Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.

No one comes to the Father, but through Me! I am the door! Don’t find yourself on the wrong side of the door!



June 22



Matt 6:9 “Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Notice that the core theme of this prayer is not about us, but about the presence and glory of the Father; Hallowed be Thy name!

The word hallowed is the Greek word “hagiazo”; meaning to make holy, purify, consecrate or to sanctify. His name is to be above every name. We are warned in Scripture not to take His name in vain. Ex 20:7 “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain. It’s interesting the word vain in this Scripture is also used Duet. 5:20; ‘You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. To bear a false witness is to treat God’s name in vain! Hallowed be Thy name!

Remember, when God was about to send Moses to set His people free from their Egyptian bondage, he asked the Lord; who should I say sent me? Ex 3:13-14 Then Moses said to God, “Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I shall say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now they may say to me, ‘What is His name?’ What shall I say to them?” 14 And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.'”

God’s name had become so vain to the people of Israel that Moses knew they would ask him the question; what is His name? His name was no longer hallowed to His people. Their thoughts and perceptions of who God was had become so common and varied that it was no longer Hallowed be Thy name, but what is His name?

Today, in many of our churches His name is no longer hallowed. Isaiah speaks to this lack of reverence for His name. Isa 29:13 Then the Lord said, “Because this people draw near with their words And honor Me with their lip service, But they remove their hearts far from Me, And their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote. We draw near, but not as near as we would like to think. Our reverence for His name has become nothing more than a tradition that we have learned by repetition. Rev 3:20 ‘Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will dine with him, and he with Me. We convince ourselves that we are drawing near, but He is still standing at the door knocking wanting to come in and we are none the wiser.

Rev 3:16-17 ‘So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. 17 ‘Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked.

We become lukewarm when our prayers are no longer preferenced by hallowed be Thy name and our hearts are wrapped in tradition instead of true worship.

June 11



Are we there yet? Those words that send nerve racking pain up our spines, triggering our lips to form words that should never be spoken. The impatience of our children who have no concept of time feel it necessary to repeat this incessant phrase; are we there yet until we as parents reach our breaking point. I wonder if this is some sort of diabolical plot that is coded into our genetic DNA because of the fall. Another time and another blog.

But, what if this question, are we there yet, is not coming from our kids in the back seat but from the impatience of our own hearts. Recently I drove a U-Haul from Texas to Florida and the little kid in me rose up in his impatience asking the same question over and over again. I was continually looking at my GPS to see how far I had come only to determine what I thought had to be several hundred miles was actually only twenty! You’ve got to be kidding me! I wish I had the time to share all the little intricacies within this trip that only intensified the question; are we there yet, but it would take more than a blog; it would take a novel.

I’ve discovered something on this trip. My impatience was due to the fact that my heart was focused on the wrong destination. I wanted to get to Florida, but the Lord is preparing me for His kingdom and His glory. Eph 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. He is always working on my heart preparing me for the work of service that He has waiting for me. Florida is just a place and it was good to finally get there, but the essence of the destination is all about what God has prepared beforehand.

The real destination is a relationship! John 17:3 “And this is eternal life, that they may know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent. Eternal life is not about a place we arrive, but the fullness of a relationship we come to know. 1 Cor 13:11-12 When I was a child, I used to speak as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I shall know fully just as I also have been fully known. I used to speak as a child; are we there yet, but when I matured I did away with childish things.

The impatience in our lives along with the question; are we there yet will fade away as our love for the Father grows. 1 Cor 13:13 But now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. The issue of impatience does not fit within the life of faith, hope and love. Faith, hope and love flow from the Father and our relationship with Him.

Phil 3:13-14 Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Paul was saying that he was not there yet, but impatience was not distracting him from moving forward. The goal of the prize is knowing Jesus Christ in all His glory.

Are we there yet? No! But, let us have joy in the journey!


May 19



Scripture tells us that as sin increases our love will grow cold and our salt has become tasteless. Matt 24:12 “And because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. Matt 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how will it be made salty again? It is good for nothing anymore, except to be thrown out and trampled under foot by men.

When we have become ashamed of the gospel our salt has become tasteless. Luke 4:18-19 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, And recovery of sight to the blind, To set free those who are downtrodden, 19 To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.” We have been anointed with the salt of the gospel not to contain it within the four walls of our church buildings, but to proclaim it to those held captive outside those walls. The salt of the gospel releases captives, helps recover sight to the blind and sets free those who are burdened with the weight of sin.

Our salt has become tasteless when we become hearers of the word, but not doers. James 1:22-25 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man shall be blessed in what he does.

A deceived life is a tasteless life. When we look into the mirror of God’s word only to forget who we are in Christ the seasoning of our life becomes tasteless to the world around us. Our faith is left to be trampled under foot by man. James 2:20 But are you willing to recognize, you foolish fellow, that faith without works is useless? If our faith has become useless our salt has become tasteless.

1 Cor 9:22-23 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak; I have become all things to all men, that I may by all means save some. 23 And I do all things for the sake of the gospel, that I may become a fellow partaker of it. Our salt becomes tasteless when our gospel becomes compartmentalized to certain days or times. When our hearts desire is to become all things to all men and we do all things for the sake of the gospel our salt begins to heal and restore the world around us.

Finally, our salt becomes tasteless when we avoid persecution for the sake of our own comfort and convenience.   Phil 1:12-14 Now I want you to know, brethren, that my circumstances have turned out for the greater progress of the gospel, 13 so that my imprisonment in the cause of Christ has become well known throughout the whole praetorian guard and to everyone else, 14 and that most of the brethren, trusting in the Lord because of my imprisonment, have far more courage to speak the word of God without fear.

Do we have far more courage to speak the word of God without fear or has our salt become tasteless?

May 7



Go into any room with more than one person in it and you will find varying opinions on adjusting the thermostat to a comfortable level. You can always tell the places where this battle is taking place for someone has put a lock box around the thermostat and has become the gatekeeper of human comfort. Those with the least amount of say so are the ones whining the most and the loudest.

As I recently heard these debates ensuing in the church pews my mind connected these disagreements of room temperature to those of adjusting the thermostat of God’s grace among those in the church and those outside, as if God’s thermostat was any different. 2 Cor 12:9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you…” Adjusting the thermostat to God’s grace is unnecessary for it is always sufficient for whatever heart condition we man be confronted with.

But, we all have those thermostat controllers in our churches don’t we? There are those who want to adjust God’s grace thermostat toward the “legalistic” side of the dial. The room can get pretty stuffy and uncomfortable when these folks take control of the thermostat. These guys want to turn the grace temperature down and have you add some additional works to be more comfortable in your Christian walk. Most of the people who attempt in adding works can never get comfortable enough and eventually leave the church.

On the other side of the thermostat dial are the “liberal” thermostat holders. They’re adjusting the thermostat of grace until it freezes every member to the point of indifference toward sin altogether. God loves us so much and He understands when we make “mistakes”. You see even the definition of sin and God’s opinion of it becomes so guilt free that we no longer take personal responsibility for our own sins. If you’ve ever have been in a “cold church” most likely the ones controlling the thermostat are those who have watered down God’s grace to the point that it no longer is transforming lives.

For the thermostat to be set at a position of maximum efficiency there must be a balance of truth and grace. John 1:14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. We are called to speak the truth in love; one without the other leaves us with one of the two extremes of room temperature. Col 4:6 Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned, as it were, with salt, so that you may know how you should respond to each person.

The words we speak reveal the temperature of our hearts. Matt 15:19 “For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders. If our words are not a balance of truth and grace there needs to be an adjustment to our grace thermostat.

Adjusting the thermostat of our hearts will allow the temperature of our words to reach the hearts of those in need of God’s grace. 2 Cor 1:12 For our proud confidence is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in holiness and godly sincerity, not in fleshly wisdom but in the grace of God, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you.

By adjusting the thermostat of your heart you’ll begin to see the glory of God’s grace unifying the church and drawing those without Christ to His throne of grace.

April 30



Standing alone against the onslaught of an overwhelming day is not what the Lord intended for His bride the church. The theme of His desired purpose for the church is unity! There is a beauty, power and presence in the midst of His church when they are unified.

Ps 133 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brothers to dwell together in unity! 2 It is like the precious oil upon the head, Coming down upon the beard, Even Aaron’s beard, Coming down upon the edge of his robes. 3 It is like the dew of Hermon, Coming down upon the mountains of Zion; For there the Lord commanded the blessing — life forever.

The goodness of His presence dwells within the unity of His people. There is special anointing that falls upon His church as they live their lives united as one. Like the dew that gathers at the top of a mountain and flows down as a river into the valley carrying with it the provision and blessing of the Lord.

John 17:17-23 “Sanctify them in the truth; Thy word is truth. 18 “As Thou didst send Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. 19 “And for their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth. 20 “I do not ask in behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word; 21 that they may all be one; even as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be in Us; that the world may believe that Thou didst send Me. 22 “And the glory which Thou hast given Me I have given to them; that they may be one, just as We are one; 23 I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, that the world may know that Thou didst send Me, and didst love them, even as Thou didst love Me.

Unity flows from the hearts of those who are sanctified (set apart) in truth! Jesus described this unity as the oneness that He and the Father had with each other and the unity He desired for us to have with He and the Father. It is a unity that is continually being perfected as we live in fellowship with the Son. It’s the evidence of this unity that reveals to a watching world that Jesus was sent by the Father and expresses the Father’s love for a lost world.

This unity does not happen within a vacuum, but is formed within the fellowship of God’s people, the study of His word and the life expressions of worship throughout the week. Eph 4:11-13 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.

Unity is the manifestation of the fullness of Christ in the individual members as they live life united together in faith.   Phil 2:1-4 If therefore there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, 2 make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. 3 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.

Uncompromising- undefiled – unrestrained unity!

April 22



Since God’s ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts we can always expect the unexpected. But, we live the majority of our lives as if we were contestants on “Let’s Make A Deal”. We come trading what we have for what’s behind door number two, only to feel duped when the curtain is opened.

Rom 1:22-23 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man… Fools will always experience the unexpected when they exchange the glory that God has prepared for them for the corruptible things behind door number two. We pursue success as the world defines it only to discover the same thing King Solomon discovered; vanity. Even though we’ve been given illustrations like King Solomon and warnings like, “you reap what you sow”; we always seem to be surprised by the unexpected harvest.

But, in the midst of all our unexpected baggage comes a God of unexpected grace and love. Consider the woman who was caught in the act of adultery and placed before Jesus for a verdict. The Law said she was to be stoned to death. Jesus does the unexpected! John 8:7-11″He who is without sin among you, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 And again He stooped down, and wrote on the ground. 9 And when they heard it, they began to go out one by one, beginning with the older ones, and He was left alone, and the woman, where she was, in the midst. 10 And straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” 11 And she said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go your way. From now on sin no more.”

For those of us who know of God’s salvation; God did the unexpected! Rom 5:8-9 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. He is always choosing the unexpected. 1 Cor 1:27-28 but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, 28 and the base things of the world and the despised, God has chosen, the things that are not, that He might nullify the things that are.

God’s glory and power come wrapped in unexpected ways, in unexpected places and through unexpected people. Heb 11:1-3 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2 For by it the men of old gained approval. 3 By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible. Faith is the assurance and the conviction of the unexpected.

So, today if you find yourself in unexpected circumstances put your faith in an unexpected God who desires to do the unexpected in your life. Rom 8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. God causes the unexpected!