Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Know God in 2014!

and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 3:19 NIV)

In less than 16 hours we turn the page on 2013. People will celebrate tonight in many different ways. Stephanie and I have no plans. We probably won't even be awake at midnight. The New Year will come regardless wether we are sleeping or awake. The dropping of the ball in Time Square or the flash from 11:59pm to midnight will occur even as it am in peaceful slumber. God operates the same way. Regardless wether we acknowledge him or know his great love, he is always working. I KNOW this to be true because of my life.

For over 40 years I have known the Love of God. It is so fun to look back on my life and see God in every event. The love and relationship I have with my wife, the blessings of my children and grandchildren, the wonderul friends, and various ministries I have been a part of, all scream Gods love for me. It boggles my mind to know he loves me so much that he has filled my life with such joy and great people.

I want the same thing for all my family, friends, and people I meet. I pray that in 2014 you will come to know the fullness of Gods love, a love that surpasses all understanding. I pray that you will come to know God personally and begin to share that love with everyone you know. I pray that even in the toughest of times you will be aware of God. I pray you will know joy that overcomes pain and suffering. I pray you will experience laughter and relaxation throughout the entire year. Praise God for a great year and another miraculous year just around the corner.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Safe and sound!

For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord. (Psalm 27:5, 6 NIV)

God never promises a life free of trouble. Sometimes that trouble is minor. Sometimes that trouble is massive. He does promise to keep us safe. He is our shelter and even though evil presses in on all sides we are protected. Thank you Lord for getting me through all the rough times of my life. My joy is in you!

2013 has been a great year with very little trouble or stress in my life. I would count this as one of my best years. God has blessed me abundantly. I am embarassed by all the great blessings I have been granted. The highlights of 2013 include the birth of another grandchild, a great ministry year with CMA, a wonderful summer trip to California with my wonderul wife, a new adventure in Personalized Learning at school, and so many joyous times with my family. 

I have been held safe and sound in God's dwelling place. I am thankful beyond words for the grace God has given me and my family. May we serve him every day during 2014.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Keep your New Years Resolution? Here's how!

Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Matthew 22:37-39 NIV)

Every year the hot topic between Christmas and New Years is "New Years Resolutions". I'm not a great fan, although I have made some resolutions. I always debate wether I should make a resolution. Just as popular as making resolutions is breaking them. I think most people have great intentions, but our weaknesses keep us from following through. Weight loss is the most popular New Years resolution. The next nine in the top ten are: quit smoking, learn something new, eat a healthier diet, get out of debt, spend more time with family, travel to new places, be less stressed, volunteer, and drink less. This is a noble list and most of us could comit to them. But, by the time February rolls around, they are all forgotten.

So, how do you keep a resolution? The American Psychological Association recommends three tips at keeping your resolutions:

1) tackle one behavior at a time
2) tell everyone about your resolutions
3) don't beat yourself up if you falter along the way

Good advice! Now let's try it on this resolution:

"Love The Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind!"

If you take the advice, this should be a doable New Years resolution. Start simply by praying to God each day.  Do a daily bible study? It doesn't need to take a lot of time. Electronically you can have it sent do your phone! Share your new resolutions with everyone you know, but pick out someone to keep you accountable. Lastly, if you miss a day, don't panic, pick it right up and keep the resolution going. I really recommend to send yourself reminders often! 

After time goes by, the time with God will be a key part of your day. Loving The Lord means spending time with him and getting to know him. It's up to you! Love The Lord you God!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Hope for 2014

We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield. (Psalm 33:20 NIV)

The new year awaits us. In less than a week, we will start another year. It is my 54th and every year as long as I can remember, I have great hope for the upcoming days. My hope is in The Lord. Waiting is not a gift of mine. I am rather impatient. The Lord has helped me with patience and he has done that by giving me great hope. Yes, my impatience has lessened due to the fact The Lord has been my ever present help for the past 53 plus years. Whenever I have needed help or protection, he has provided. I am so curious how people survive without the assurance of help and hope.

I love the mystery of a new year. I love it's excitement and it's adventure. Praise God he is with me always. Praise God he supplies joy, peace, and grace in great abundance to those who believe and call upon his name. Thank you Lord for a great 2013 and the magic to come in 2014.

Thursday, December 26, 2013


As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— (1 Peter 2:4 NIV)

I read a quote today from Billy Graham, "Aethists and Agnostics find fault with Christians but not with Christ." Christ came to this earth over 2,000 years ago. He was rejected by man. Now those who do not follow Christ reject him because of us. Our sinfulness gets in the way of so many people accepting Christ. Until, they realize we all come from the same broken place, they can't understand the true saving grace of Christ. Until we as Christians stop judging and  making ourselves superior to those that are not followers, the world will never change.

We need to be more about loving people than hating sin. I am so saddened by our focus. I am also saddened by our putting one sin above another. We are all sinners and equally sinful to our perfect father. We are also ALL precious to him. So much so that he gave his son to death on the cross that we might spend eternity with him.

Praise Hod for his patience with us and our sinfulness. Lord, help us reach others. Help them to feel your love through us. May we be filled with your a Holy Spirit as we serve and witness to the lost and forgotten.

You're an Overcomer!

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. (1 John 4:4 NIV)

It seems like life is full of obstacles. We spend our lives overcoming those obstacles any way we can. I have battled with my own obstacles including issues at school, finances, and family issues. But, I have to admit, my obstacles are so small compared to most people. I praise God he has blessed me beyond all I could ask for. When obstacles have been placed in my path, I have overcome them. Not by my own strength, but I have overcome them through the power of Christ. 

As a child of God, I am so fortunate to be defended by the creator of the universe. I feel his presence through good times and bad. I have seen his protection in my life. Anyone can witness that same protection by turning their life to him. Open your heart to Jesus and see the wonderful changes before you. 

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Keep the Joy of Christmas!

Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:11, 12 NIV)

Christmas Day is drawing to a close. The presents are all unwrapped and the joy of this great day is over. Tomorrow we begin the trek through the winter doldrums. The lack of sun and warmth,the fighting with the cold and snow turns into a major battle. Spring is a long way off and it's easy to lose your zeal. What ever you need to do to keep your focus on Christ, your spiritual fervor, do it!

Serve The Lord with all your heart, especially during the toughest of times. Start a new bible study, add a new time to spend with The Lord, or take on a new ministry. It is so important to keep your faith fresh, joyful, and full of hope. The Lord will provide hope and the Holy Spirit will work inside. I have had so many times where it felt like I was just going through the motions, but God has provided the life giving joy through new and unique ways. Never lose contact through prayer and never stop reading the word. These two areas seem to be the greatest factors in fighting the boredom or monotony of serving. I know it sounds sacrilegious to say serving can be boring. I have found it is my own fault when this happens and it only comes from lack of time with my Lord. Be genuine in your daily walk with The Lord. Open up and ask for zeal when it starts to wane. God honors your prayers and desires when it comes to serving him.

Keep you spiritual fervor, your Zeal for sharing the message of Christ, our sinful world needs us! Keep the joy of the birth of our savior on your mind and in your heart every moment of everyday. Treasure this wonderful gift and share it with all you meet.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas: Love in Action!

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth. (1 John 3:18 NIV)

We are less than 24 hours from Christmas morning. It is the most peaceful morning of the year. No rush to get ready for school, no shopping deadlines, and nothing on the schedule except family. The whole world takes a break and one big collective sigh. We get the joy of watching others open gifts given with out sincere love. I can't express the joy I get out of giving my family gifts at Christmas. I love the surprise and the joy at the unexpected gift. 

Love is the center of Christmas. God sent his son to live among us. He came to earth just,like we did. He grew up like we did. He lived a life sharing love and speaking the truth, just like we should. We need to get beyond the words and take action, like Jesus did. We need to take hope to the hopeless. We need to share the truth and real love which is not judgmental. Christians are good at speaking the words and not walking the walk. We need to provide the unexpected gift of sacrifice to help and serve others. The joy of giving works for the giver and the river of the gift. It's a win win for everyone.

The greatest gift you can give this Christmas is to put your love in action. Go out and serve out of love and dedication to the new born babe, Born in a manger so that we might all be saved. 


Sunday, December 22, 2013

Who do you serve?

Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people, (Ephesians 6:7 NIV)

Are you a servant? Do you work a job or do you serve your company? Are you a teacher or do you serve your students? Are you a parent or do you serve your kids? Are you a husband/spouse or do you serve your spouse? Every task we undertake should be from the heart of a servant. 

We are to serve wholeheartedly. Everyone we contact, every day, we should serve like they are The Lord. I'm ashamed to say I fall far short of being a true servant. I am more interested in my own agenda than to serve others. 

We all need to change and look at Christ for the leadership of a real servant. Yes, a true leader serves those he leads. A true servant looks to the needs of others before his own. A true servant gives sacrificially. It is not a popular position in society. Servants are looked on as weak. God looks at the servant as strong and rich. True service is directed by the Holy Spirit. It is the prayer of Christs followers that leads to serving his kingdom. Service is not dreamed of in the heart of man, but in the heart of God. 

Dear Lord, Search my heart, give me the heart for service. Help me to see the needs of others ahead of my own. Provide the opportunities and the willingness to be used for your purposes and not my own. Forgive me for my weak faith. Forgive me for inaction and neglect of those in need. 

Saturday, December 21, 2013


So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith. (Galatians 3:24 NIV)

I am a law abiding citizen, except when it comes to speeding. I am definitely a fast driver. I am always amazed at how fast people drive. Very few people obey the speed limit. I usually like pushing 7-10mph above the posted speed limit. Most people are at least going 5above. It said that most officers won't pull you over for that speed. So why don't they post it for 75mph instead of 70? The answer is obvious. We wont obey any posted limit. We will always go beyond it. So post it at 70 and you keep them from going 80. 

God made "the law" knowing we could not keep it. So what did he do? He sent his son to die for us so we could be saved from the breaking of the law. The laws are right. They are there to keep us safe and to enjoy the greatest blessings of life. Yet, we always break them. We are all sinners. He knew we couldn't keep them and the only way we could live the greatest life was to come to his son, Jesus. Praise God he has given us a way to handle our sins and to be forgiven for break his law. Thank you Jesus for coming to my rescue on the cross.

Standards based living

All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. (Isaiah 64:6 NIV)

I get to hang out with some pretty great teenagers. I see so many great things they do. They are fun, caring, smart, and driven to learn. They love to compare themselves to others. They compare themselves to great athletes, beautiful models, top scholars, and students with all the wealth. It drives me crazy. Their standards are so skewed by our Pop culture. Some ways I think our education system promotes that. Instead of measuring students on their own growth, we constantly measure them against others. We give awards based on those comparisons and it promotes more comparisons and much less work on improving each individual student. It's. OT always healthy to compare yourself to others. It may create an impossible goal, or more than likely it holds you back from being everything you can be. 

It doesn't change that much when they become adults. We all use others for comparison. If we choose correctly we can make ourselves look better than we are. Our standards are also skewed. Our only real measure is Jesus Christ. I fail miserably when I compare myself to the perfection of Christ. We are unclean. Our sins prevent us from being compared closely with Christ, pure goodness. I need to remember this, often. I am not as good as I think I am. If my standards are just other people I meet, those standards are way too low. My goals and dreams need to be set with Christ in mind. 

I know I fall short, but I am also confident in my future because Christ died for my sins and shortcomings. He has made me pure, up to his standards, by the cross. Praise God for sending his son for me! 

Friday, December 20, 2013

My Honorable Granddaughter, Lauren Klaehn!

Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. (Romans 12:10 NIV)

What does Honor mean? We use this term so loosely and many just don't understand it. Our military, police officers, and firemen know the definition of honor. They live it. This verse gives a great insight to what a honor means. 

Our society is about ME! This time of year is a great training ground for MEism Our younger children learn early to make lists for themselves. Television stations run commercials continuously about what YOU NEED! The entire Christmas season is tainted with selfishness and materialism. Every once in a while we run across someone who really knows the definition of honor because they give of themselves and don't care about GETTING as much as GIVING! This year I know someone, personally, who gave up her Christmas for someone in need.

My granddaughter, Lauren Klaehn, is a selfless, honorable young lady. She really stepped out this Christmas to honor someone else above herself. When most sophomore girls are anticipating great quantities of clothing and trinkets for Christmas. My wonderful granddaughter is giving all her Christmas to a homeless woman. She selflessly is taking over two hundred dollars that would have been her Christmas presents and giving it to a homelessness woman. She found out what this woman needed, shopped for it, and is giving it out of pure love. Her parents didn't prompt it. She brought it up on her own. She has jdeveloped an beautiful attitude of honor and dedication to others above herself.

I can't begin to express the pride I have in this wonderful caring young lady. Frankly, I'm embarrassed that she understands what it means to be a Christian better than her 53 year old grandfather. If you want to know the true meaning of honor and sacrifice, ask Lauren. She is starting to understand those honorable military personnel who sacrifice their lives for our freedom, or the firemen and policemen who puts his life on the line to protect us. She is living the definition of HONOR!

Merry Christmas Lauren! May God bless you in special ways now and throughout your life!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Most Honorable Profession

“You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. (John 13:13 NIV)

I am a teacher. Jesus was a teacher. I am so proud of the fact I am in the most honorable profession. Training our youth for the world of tomorrow is so very rewarding. The students are wonderful. The group of teachers I work with are exceptional. The heart and soul of teaching is caring about your students, building relationships, and helping prepare students for their future. It is not always easy and I can't say I don't have moments of frustration. I think even Jesus had moments of frustration. I know God has been frustrated with his "students". He still loves us and I feel the same about my students.

God wants us to grow in our knowledge of him. He wants us to learn the proper ways to live. He wants us to study his textbook, open ourselves to his teaching and guiding, and learn from our mistakes. I want the same things for my students. I don't just want them to know about Math, Science, English, and Social Studies, I want them to learn how to live. I want them to open themselves to new ideas and learn from their mistakes. I want them to be prepared to lead our world in a way that blesses God. That's why I feel this profession is the most honorable.

I pray for my students and colleagues every day and I thank The Lord he  has blessed me with such a wonderful life as a teacher!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Pray for ........,,!

Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, (Ephesians 6:19 NIV)

It seems selfish to ask someone to pray for me. Everyone has need for prayer and I am no different. This verse is what I would ask you to pray on my behalf. As a matter of fact, this is the prayer I say for myself several times a day.

I know so many people. How do I pray for all of them? I have to admit I spend most of my morning and evening prayer time praying for my family or myself. I'm not ashamed, but I should pray for more people. Just like me, we all need prayer. So many people have no one to pray for them. I have, on occasion prayed for coworkers and I am on the prayer chain at church. I get requests and faithfully pray for those people. I need to do more.

I am pledging to pray for more people. I will pray for people I encounter each day, the students, the parents, the coworkers, the strangers that I meet. I will pray the prayer that each of these people grow closer to God, come to know the saving grace of Jesus and be open to the direction of the Holy Spirit. We can change our communities by spending more time praying for people in that community.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Family = Mom!

Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: (Proverbs 31:28 NIV)

I have great daughters. I have great grandkids. I wish I could take credit! Truth is, my wife is the real reason for my wonderful Christian family. Her heart for our family is pure and the love she shares is amazing. The character of a business "starts at the top" , the character of a family begins and ends with MOM. This is even more true for the Christian Family. As we were raising our family she made sure our kids had clothes and all the necessary things to grow up at her own sacrifice. She was the taxi driver, cook, maid, nurse, teacher, laundry service, counselor, disciplinarian, and Christian example. She never complains and would do anything for her family, even at the cost of her own health. 

My wife is the epitome of a great family leader. She has an undying love for her daughters and an equal or greater love for her grandchildren. She has always given selflessly and with no limits. It's Christmas and we focus on Jesus, as we should. But I often think of Mary and her great sacrifices. My lovely wife follows her great example. Mary was blessed to be the mother of our savior, but she had to sacrifice all from Jesus birth to his horrific death on the cross. She was a true example of the typical Christian mother.

I thank The Lord for being blessed with such a wonderful, loving wife. She has passed that love and family dedication to our daughters. She is the greatest blessing of my life. 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Extravagant Generosity!

Have you ever come on anything quite like this extravagant generosity of God, this deep, deep wisdom? It’s way over our heads. We’ll never figure it out. Is there anyone around who can explain God? Anyone smart enough to tell him what to do? Anyone who has done him such a huge favor that God has to ask his advice? Everything comes from him; Everything happens through him; Everything ends up in him. Always glory! Always praise! Yes. Yes. Yes. (Romans 11:33-36 MSG)

I feel sorry for people who don't know God. They miss out on life. There is nothing like his extravagant generosity. He uniquely loves us, those created in his own image. It makes for a life filled with peace and adventure at the same time. I have really studied God over the past 15 years. I know people, like my grandfather, who studied him for an entire lifetime. Yet, they and I am no closer to being able to explain him. I am no closer to knowing him. He is so wise, loving, and amazing. I don't really expect to get to know him like I know my wife or my family. I still have a long way to go with them. My study of God is not so much to know him as to be with him. To hear his voice, to feel his presence, to feel his love, is my greatest hope. Everything about my life is in him, through him, and for him. May I share the love he has granted me every day of my life.

What I do know? He loves me! He shows me everyday by the blessings I receive, by the protection he provides, and by  his direction of my path. But, most importantly he showed me that love by sending his son to live with us and die on the cross for us! Merry Christmas. Celebrate Jesus this holiday season. He is the reason for the season!

Our Nation will fall

The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Messiah, and he will reign for ever and ever.” (Revelation 11:15 NIV)

I'm getting so I hate politics. Most people are way ahead of me on this. I have always admired politicians and there dedication. Just like most modern day heroes, the image they portray is not always perfect. Politicians, actors, actresses, athletes, and business men are not perfect. They are just as sinful as we are. They succumb to temptation and the lures of fame and fortune add extra pressure. Most can't handle it. I have always looked on them with pride, not anymore. Republicans and Democrats alike are, more often than not, self-centered, egotistical, leaders. 

The political leaders of our nation seem to be more corrupted by power. Money has become more of an influence than people in our democracy. The price is the failure in our economy and more importantly the character of our nation. We are not a nation for the majority. We are a nation of the minority and special interest groups. We have removed God and faith from all our institutions. We have made it wrong to profess our faith. I'm dissappointed we can not overcome this.

The good news? The nations of our planet, the kingdoms, will fail. They are going to be turned over to  my savior. He will eventually rule all nations and kingdoms. I can't wait and dream of that day. Praise God protects his people even now, during all the times of turmoil, through all the evil and immoral leadership. Thank you Lord for your love and grace!

Friday, December 13, 2013


Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away. (Matthew 24:35 NIV)

I love words. I'm a Math teacher, but the way people communicate can be quite fascinating. Lately, through school, I have been helping grade writing assignments. It has been challenging and rewarding at the same time. I have always loved books and have read continuously throughout my life. No book compares to the Bible. No words compare to those words inspired by the creator of the universe, written through his spirit in man.

The Bible is such an awesome book in my life. The word of God, on paper, for me. It is a guide, a resource, a direction for me to follow. It has endured the tests of time and the scrutiny of millions. It is unfallible, perfect, and sacred. I love studying it and serving through its message. I am always awestruck by its relevance right now. It's not a pie-in-the-sky feeling, it's real! The critiques have tried for thousands of years to tear down its value. Faith and experience have demonstrated to me PERSONALLY their folly.

Thank you Lord for your love. Thank you for your word and it's life giving guidance. Please Lord keep my eyes and my heart open to my daily Bible Study. Reveal to me how to make those words a part of my life not just print on a page. Praise God for the truths you have written in this wonderful book.

Knocking Down Walls

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. (John 8:36 NIV)

Free -- to be unrestrained or unobstructed

We have so many barriers in our lives. Do you remember the Berlin Wall? What about the color barrier and civil rights? The barrier for women's rights? The Sound Barrier? Man has come up against and destroyed many barriers through our history. The ability to break down those walls can be directly attributed to Jesus Christ. Many of the barriers I face on a daily basis are self imposed. Others are placed there by Satan. He just loves to see us separated from God. The barriers I see on a daily basis are not as Grand as those we have faced as a nation or a planet. Yet, they keep me from being the best person I can be. I struggle with barriers that keep me doing the best I can in the classroom. If aight battles trying to be the best servant for Christ. The only way I overcome those barriers is to count on Jesus to knock them down. None of those walls stand a chance against my savior. Once we accept the power of Jesus nothing stands in our way. We are free! 

I pray Jesus continues to fight for our rights. I pray he gives us the wisdom and power to overcome obstacles placed to keep us from serving and helping others. I pray that I am not a barrier to others coming to know Jesus. Praise God he loves me and watches over me every minute of my life. Thank you Lord!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Be Open to the Possibilities!

Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. (Psalm 100:3 NIV)

God is God. Why do we try to make gods of everything? We worship money, things, jobs, athletes, performers, and many other things in place of God. Everyone will figure this out............ eventually. We can do it on our own or forced by God himself. 

If we can't say we "Know that The Lord is God" We need to open our hearts and mind to finding out. I understand doubt, but in my 53 years of life I have opened up to the possibility and God has shown me. There is no question that God is God. The God of Isaac and Jacob, the God of Matthew and Luke is God. There is only one, my God is God. He created us and he knows our hearts. He loves us. He wants us to know him. Can you say it with your mouth? Do you know it in your mind? Can you feel it in your heart? If not, ask God to reveal himself to you. Be open to the possibilities. You will see and then know God is God!

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Center of Love!

But you, dear friends, carefully build yourselves up in this most holy faith by praying in the Holy Spirit, staying right at the center of God’s love, keeping your arms open and outstretched, ready for the mercy of our Master, Jesus Christ. This is the unending life, the real life! (Jude 1:20, 21 MSG)

I am waiting on the day Christ comes for me. Until that time, I will spend my time praying and staying in the center of Gods Love. That is living the real life. What does it mean to be in the center of Gods Love? If I'm in the center I am deeply immersed in his love. As far as I can go Gods love is present. The world is outside and I'm protected from its reach. I pray we can reach the center of his love.

Where I'm at is my own choice.God provides a place for me to be safe and secure from harm. I get there by being in his love, praying continuously, and serving others. If I'm not in the center of his love, I am exposed to the world. The world can be an ugly place. I have found that I move in and out of his love as I walk through my day, week,and year. He wants me to be there always but my weakness and selfish desires keep me from being there. When I focus on myself and not my family, or serving others, I fall out of his love. When I get too busy to pray or build my faith through his word, I fall out of the center of his love. It's not that he doesn't love me, it's that I reject that love. That's not too smart! 

Dear Lord, please help me stay in the center of your love. Be patient with me when I fall away and grant mercy when I return. I love you and want to be with you every moment of my day. Amen!

Monday, December 9, 2013

"We are....."

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, (Ephesians 2:13, 14 NIV)

Before every assembly at GHS  for at least the past 5 years, the principal raises his pointer finger high in the air, he say, "We are...." And we all respond.. "Garrett!" It is used to bring us together as a school. The former Principal started the tradition by saying We are One! Unity is so critical in a school, a family, a business, or any organization. You can not survive with a house divided. You can not be effective with barriers and walls of hostility.

The best way to bring a group together is through Jesus Christ. Our world is so divided. Our communities, our government, our families all follow the same pattern. Jesus is the answer. The more we draw near to him, the more we have true peace. Pray for unity. Pray for oneness in your lives. Pray that your enemies or adversaries will draw near to Christ. As we all draw closer to him our lives will be filled with love and peace.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

God hear the prayers of the weak!

The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, and their ways are vile; there is no one who does good. (Psalm 53:1 NIV)

Who is they? We are the "they" of this verse. As a Christian with the confidence where I'm going, it would be easy to be pompous. I could always refer to "they" as those sinners who have not committed to Jesus. But, I have to constantly remind myself that I am not as great as I think I am. I am a part of THEY. Today brought that to my attention.

I was called on to visit a family whose mother is near death in a Fort Wayne Hospital. They asked me to pray for the mother like I was someone special. I'm not. I felt so inadequate. Yet, I do know someone who has the complete power to heal . They were so gracious and worried about there mother. We prayed for a miracle. We prayed for healing and I know the power of my savior. I know if it is in his will, he will heal this woman. Yet, I also know his will is perfect and he does not always choose to heal here on Earth. I just don't understand,but I love him and I know he is in charge. His ways are beyond me and I'm more than okay with that. In my narrow vision, I would love to see a complete healing that will bring a Glory to God and this family to its knees. It's ideal, I know. But God says to bring it all to him, so I did and do again tonight.

I also have one of my early spiritual mentors fighting a brain tumor. This man has brought so many to know Jesus. He counseled my wife and I as we were teenagers planning to marry. He and his lovely wife brought me through my teen years and were key in the development of my relationship with God. This wonderful, God filled man was also instrumental in the early faith of my own children. I feel so powerless in calling on Jesus for him.

Dear Lord, please hear my prayer. I ask for healing for this woman and Ted for your Glory, for your purposes and for your kingdom. I pray your love will be revealed through this entire situation that these family members would draw nearer to you. I pray for the doctors, surgeons, nurses and hospital staff that you will guide the treatment and miracle healing. I praise you God for your power, mercy and love. I love you and trust you. Thank you Jesus for loving this terribly inadequate person and making something out of nothing in my life. Amen!

Saturday, December 7, 2013


When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, (Psalm 8:3 NIV)

I'm not really sure "ginormous" is a word. But, Words can not describe the enormity of God. The psalmist tries. To consider God's fingers creating the heavens and placing all the billions of stars is incomprehensible. On a clear moonlit night its like we can touch the moon or reach the stars. God has done both. Then take it a step further, he has done these great things and yet he loves US! He desires US! He has created all these things for US! Dwell on it! The cells of our body, the atom, it's nucleus, its energy, the vastness of space, are all mysteries. But, the greatest of all mysteries, why he loves us? Why he longs for us? 

Praise God for the work of his hands, the delicate but powerful fingers that have the skill to create all things. I love you Lord and worship you! You are amazing and wonderful beyond all words!

"Silent Night"

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. (Isaiah 26:3 NIV)

One of the worlds favorite Christmas songs has to be Silent Night. There is nothing more peaceful than ending a Christmas Eve service with this wonderful song. That time is a great moment in our lives where we quietly contemplate Jesus. I know I should do that more often. My morning and evening devotions are peaceful times for me. I can ignore the world and worship God. I need to do that more throughout the day. 

Peace begins with Jesus. Our rushed lives, push out time with our savior. Our minds are weak and when we are busy doing our day, we aren't disciplined enough to include Jesus in all our activities. We need to train ourselves to be steadfast in relying on Jesus. We need to do this every waking moment. We need a lifetime of prayer. I'm not talking about being a monk. I'm saying waking, eyes wide open, prayer throughout every moment of our day. He wants more from me than just a brief time on Sunday, prayer at meals, before bed, or when we rise. 

If we want the real peace, deeper than "Silent Night" , we need to spend more time with the one who can provide that life of peace.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Gods grading system!

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8 NIV)

 I know people who would love to see me fail! Whenever we start something new in education, there are many people who would love to see it fail. In all fairness, we have had a bunch of a FADS over the years. It's hard to shift. One of our newest program is using a standards based grading philosophy. Students keep working at understanding a standard until they master it. They get to "Fail" until they complete the standard successfully. The detractors say this is not helpful and students will not try and not learn if they just get to redo things. I see students putting out so much more effort and genuinely caring about their education. 

I am so glad God doesn't grade like we do in most schools. Our lives are filled with failures. Satan loves to see them. Yet, our God is patient enough to let us try over and over until we finally get it. We can and will sin. God forgives us. God give us 70 times 7 times to forgive. He gives us instruction along the way and re teaches us daily. God would make a great educator. He's not looking to see us fail. He takes no joy in our failures and wants to see us succeed. So much is his desire that he gave his son so we might overcome our sinful failures and spend eternity with him. I love his grading scale!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Are you happy with your job?

Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. (Psalm 51:12 NIV)

I want to serve with a willing spirit in everything I do. I heard a colleague lament the fact they were arriving at school for the start of the week. I just don't understand why people work jobs they hate. To wake up everyday and dread going to teach is beyond me. If you don't like what you're doing, do something else. Don't you think students can tell if a teacher loves their  job? I know they can also tell if you loath what you're doing. The attitude we take in completing our job is directly related to our success. Jesus is the center of our life and the joy we have with life.

 The joy of our initial salvation can only wane if we do not constantly build our relationship with the savior. We need a spirit willing to be used by him and listen to his calling. If our attitude is not good we will lose our joy. Call on God to renew your spirit, to restore the joy that brought you to Jesus. You have to love what you do in life and the center of that love needs to be Jesus. Being satisfied, happy with your job, your family, your circumstances in life is tied to your love of  Jesus. 

It's easy to forget where I'm going. The path that God has set before me gets overgrown with weeds of sin and I lose my way. I'm normal. My constant prayer is to restore the joy of my salvation. In other words, please Lord, clear the path for me. Then give me the willing heart to walk down that path with you and the joy of my salvation.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Our present evil age

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. (Galatians 1:3-5 NIV)

These verses were written  2000 years ago and we are still living in "the present evil age" and a God is still rescuing us. 

I am always amazed by people who don't think the bible applies to their lives today. This amazing book written by God through his servants is just as real today as ever. If you really take the time to read and let the words sink into your heart and mind, you will be transformed. It's is the KEY to living life today, right now, wherever you are.

Our times are evil. Governments are corrupt, churches and followers of Christ are being persecuted. Our own country continues to tear down the family, our faith, and disregards human life. For 2000 years nothing has changed. Praise God he overcame the world 2000 years ago and he overcomes the world today. He gave his son so we might live! How can you not give God the glory. 

Monday, December 2, 2013

Who knew?

But I am like an olive tree flourishing in the house of God; I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever. (Psalm 52:8 NIV)

I learned something tonight. I have read the Bible since I could read. I have read the story of Noah and the olive branch returned by the dove. I know of the mount of olives and I have eaten olives.  Yet, I really have known very little of the olive tree, until now.  This little tree is a key part of life in the Middle East. In Israel, this tree was used for food, shade, building, healing, and cooking oil. The tree itself is said to be indestructible. It can live through, heat, cold, drought, wet, fire, and many other extremes. Some trees have root systems that survive over 2000 years. It is truly an important symbol of God. 

When I rely on God, live by his will, I am just as indestructible as an Olive tree. I can not thrive on my own. Olive trees need the same hand of a God to thrive as I do. When I flourish it is always in the house of God. His presence and strength are transferred to my life like that of the Olive tree. Praise God for his love, mercy, grace, and strength.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

My changing season!

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge. They have no speech, they use no words; no sound is heard from them. (Psalm 19:1-3 NIV)

It's December 2nd and winter is drawing near. The temperatures are falling, the leaves are gone. Christmas lights are up and the house is nearly decorated to celebrate the birth of Jesus. It's all beautifully choreographed year after year. I love the seasons and the change. This might be strange coming from a biker who longs for the open road. But, I learn to appreciate the warmth of a summer ride because of the dark, cold winter. I also love the beauty of snow falling and the fury of a blizzard. It makes the freshness of that first Spring day even sweeter. The tests and challenges of winter speak to my heart. Winter reveals much. It reveals it without words but it speaks clear.

God speaks to us with the relentless changing of the seasons. My life is his and he leads me through the same changes that mark the seasons. My seasons are not ushered in by the changing weather, they come from the march of time. While I was laboring yesterday putting up Christmas lights, fighting the ladder, and my patience, I came to realize I'm not going to be able to do this forever. After my 15th trip to the attic, I realized my body can't handle these events as it once did. Like winter, the seasons of my own life are changing. I tire more easily, my fatigue after 5days of Thanksgiving travel was nearly more than I could bear. Yet, as I end  this long extended weekend, I appreciate even more the joy of this holiday season. I don't anticipate this being my last, but I have seen more than I have ahead of me. I appreciate and Praise God for the joy of this season. I praise him for my glorious life and the many blessings I have been given. 

It is with great joy and satisfaction that I anticipate the changing of the seasons in my life. I expect to have many more years of life on this planet, but the seasons of my life ARE changing, I feel it in my heart as well as my bones! I do not fear the changes ahead of me. I don't look at them with sadness. I look to them with the same excitement and anticipation I have for the onslaught of winter or the freshness of spring. Praise God for the certainty of time and the changes in our lives!