Tuesday, May 28, 2019


I Was Just Thinking About – BEING BLINDSIDED.

Life can be very challenging and difficult in the normal ebb and flow of living. We become comfortable in our lifestyle and unsuspecting of any lurking danger. We know we live in a troubled and un certain world but have become lulled into believing it is “over there (wherever and whatever “there” is or means)” and “not here.”

Some thoughts have been present in my mind lately: (1) “The one who thinks he is standing firm should be careful not to fall (First Corinthians 10:13-14); (2) “Even youths may faint and grow weary, and young men stumble and fall…” (Isaiah 40:30-31); (3)

“Put on the full armor of God, so that you can stand (and not fall) against the devil’s schemes” Ephesians 6:10-17; (4) “The god of this age has blinded the minds (eyes) of unbelievers (and some believers) so they cannot see…Christ, who is the image of God” (Second Corinthians 4:3-4); (5) “…So that Satan should not outwit us. We are not unaware of his schemes” (Second Corinthians 2:10-11.

We must also be careful with and mindful of the words of Jesus Christ who instructed His disciples: “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned, forgive and you will be forgiven” (Luke 6:37). There is a saying that should also be kept in mind: “But for the grace of God go I.” God wants His followers to walk and live in His victory. Paul wrote about this, Galatians 5:1 (NIV), “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery (bondage).”

I have been concerned for one who was a very gifted servant of the Lord and who had served Him effectively. UNTIL - about four years ago the wheels of his wagon began to wobble. While some noticed it, no one intervened to assistance to repair the wobbling wheels. It was inevitable that they would come off and the wagon would crash. It would entail his ministry ended; his ministerial credentials removed (he was defrocked); and his marriage ended in divorce. I have no idea what efforts were made (or not made) to reclaim this dear servant. He wound up in a nearby community and began to teach in the public school system. He reacted negatively toward his denomination and withdrew from it. He did attend a Church for a while. And then – last week – my wife and I were watching the local (Tuscaloosa and Birmingham) evening news when suddenly a picture was projected – and – I exclaimed (presumptively): “That’s my friend!” Why was his picture posted on various channels and a highlight of the evening news? He had been arrested and 7 felony charges were filed against him for possession of child pornography and distribution of it to minors. After posting Bond and being released, the next day he was arrested again and 3 additional felony charges had been filed, one of which was the facilitation of prostitution.

Words of an old Hymn also came to mind. Hopefully – they will come to the mind and practice of the erring one - -

Out of my bondage, sorrow, and night,
Jesus, I come! Jesus, I come!

Into Thy freedom, gladness, and light,
Jesus, I come to Thee!

Out of my shameful failure and loss,
Jesus, I come! Jesus, I come!
Into the glorious gain of Thy cross,
Jesus, I come to Thee!

Out of unrest and arrogant pride,
Jesus, I come! Jesus, I come!
Into Thy blessed will to abide,
Jesus, I come to Thee!

Out of the depths of ruin untold,
Into the flock Thy love doth enfold,
Ever Thy glorious face to behold,
Jesus, I come to Thee!

Prayerfully – consider these things with me.

Monday, May 27, 2019


I Was Just Thinking About – BEING UNWANTED.

There are numbers of people who have been relegated to those who are insignificant, unneeded, unloved and unwanted. Who are they and what do we need to learn about them?

I know one who as a boy had a traumatic experience when his mother (1) showed him pills she had taken to abort him, and (2) told him repeatedly that he would never amount to anything. If it hadn’t been for an older sister, he might never had survived. She loved him unconditionally then and has throughout his life. There was one exception of note by this boy’s mother. He recalled that one afternoon, after hearing the Gospel on the radio, he said he wanted Jesus to be his Savior. His mother knelt by a kitchen chair and prayed with him to that end. But then – things continued as they had been for him – the repetition of the statement that he would never amount to anything.

I’ve thought about that in terms of the Gospel and its transforming influence and action in a person’s life. John 3:16 is very significant, especially for the unloved and unwanted, “God so loved.” Jeremiah 31:3 (NLT) contains the basic truth: “I have loved you with an everlasting love. With unfailing love, I have drawn you to myself.”

Another important aspect of the Gospel to note is expressed in Romans 1:16, “The Gospel is the POWER OF GOD for salvation to everyone who believes.” Just think of how vital this is for the disenfranchised and marginalized soul(s) who have been deemed to be unnecessary and unwanted.

Along with The Gospel, the Word of God is very significant in and for one’s life. Why? Hebrews 4:12 (NLT) indicates: “The word of God is alive and POWERFUL…” The Word of God always supersedes the words of people. People will voice their opinions and state their impressions about another (or others) but they are without merit of distinctiveness because only the Word of God active within one is what matters – it alone is alive and powerful.

There are also special words in Scripture for those who have been labelled and relegated as being insignificant, unneeded, unloved and unwanted. A special reminder is in Ephesians 3:17-20 (NIV), Paul prays” “that you, being rooted and established in love,  may have POWER…that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God…Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask, think or imagine, according to HIS POWER that is at work within us…”

Peter will also write to the persecuted believers regarding the power of God in and for one’s life – Second Peter 1:3-4 (NIV), “His DIVINE POWER has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.  Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may PARTICIPATE IN THE DIVINE NATURE, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.”

Being wanted by Jesus is far more important that being marginalized by people who may think of one as being insignificant, unneeded, unloved and unwanted. Be weakened no longer. Live your life in the POWER, authority and control of a God who loves you with His everlasting love.

Prayerfully – Consider these things with me.

Loved with everlasting love, Led by grace that love to know;
Gracious Spirit from above, Thou hast taught me it is so!
O this full and perfect peace! O this transport all divine!
In a love which cannot cease, I am His, and He is mine.

(BTW - I’ve written a book on this subject – Realizing Significance – that is available at a modest cost on Amazon.)

Friday, May 24, 2019


I Was Just Thinking About – INTERVENTION.

In the current political climate of animosity, one spokesperson of a political party  stated words to the effect that a man’s family should conduct an intervention with their father. A strict definition would suggest there should be an “interposition or interference of one state in the affairs of another.” Politically, the intent is to bring one into compliance with the wishes and agenda of the opposition. A lot depends on the motivation, narrative and objective of the one(s) offering that means to their particular end.

Earlier today, I read a devotional on the subject of Intrusion. The writer defines his subject: “An intrusion is someone or something that thrusts itself into our world without permission, without an invitation, and refuses to be ignored.” The writer has Depravity in mind as he wrote and how pervasive sin is and how quickly it can gain entry and domination in one’s life.

Earlier this week I listened to a You Tube Sermon by a very gifted servant of the Lord. His sermon/lecture was based on Luke 15:11-32 and addressed Prodigals and Pigpens. As I listened, some thoughts entered my mind on this subject. First, an important Biblical phrase “But God” and how significant it is – especially when one’s wheels are coming off the wagon. It conveyed to me that one can jettison human restraints and disrespect personal relationships – but – he cannot escape God - His control and plan. Second, even though the Prodigal’s father complied with the request of his son, he did not block his son’s determination to head toward that which he knew would be a slippery slope into great depravity. Third, the Father did not assemble a search group to go to the far country to determine the status of his Prodigal son. The Father knew he had to let go and let God be in control of the lost and wandering son. Fourth, the Father never stopped looking down the road each day to see if his Prodigal son was returning home.

A factor not discussed often enough or for which there is too much silence is a focus on professing Christians and ordained Ministers and their choice(s) to head to the far country to pursue their pleasures. The Church may act to ex-communicate such a member and a denominational structure may defrock the minister and feel as though they have done all that needs to be done. In some church situations, when a person has tried to repent and return, some demanding authority figure (like the Pharisee Jesus condemned) adds stipulations and conditions by which one would be received and reinstated. There seems to be little or no rejoicing about the returning Prodigal who has come to his senses.

Others gather their robes of self-righteousness and criticize the wanderer or fallen while doing little or nothing to reclaim and restore the Prodigal. The self-righteous choose to ignore a Biblical principle and ministry-role – Jude 1:22-23 – “Have mercy on those who doubt; save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.”

Biblical intervention requires one to spend much time in earnest and non-judgmental prayer. God does not need our thoughts and recommendations regarding how He should seek the wandering sheep – the Prodigal. The Biblical Christian must resist gossip about the one who has chosen a Prodigal lifestyle. The attitude and genuine conviction must ever be – “There but for the grace of God go I.”  The statement is first ascribed to John Bradford (1555) but also restated by George Whitefield, John Newton, D.L. Moody, Richard Baxter, John Bunyan and John Wesley).

Prayerfully – Consider these things with me.