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Loving His Heart

It is a joyful thing to see your children eager to pray or bless a meal. The words they speak are often simple, even at times off kilter, yet they are full of faith. For us learned and cynical adults, we cannot help but marvel, when we examine the heart of hope in a child. For example, out of all the public prayers that I have heard over the years, one in particular stands out above the rest. It is from my middle child, Elliot. Obviously, since I am his dad, I am thrilled that he chooses to pray sometimes before we have a family meal, but it is the content of his prayer that intrigues me the most. I have heard some children belt out a lyrical rhyme before a meal, others will bless every living thing before blessing the meal, and then there are some who will say a few incoherent words and then silently look at an adult, seeking a nod of approval to end the prayer. Strangely enough, I don’t remember teaching Elliot exactly what to say when he prays over food. All I remember is that on…
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In My Heart

Just a couple weeks ago, my daughter pulled my heart strings and convicted me over my desire for God. It started when my family and I were getting ready to eat supper. I asked who wanted to pray for the meal and talk to God. Elliot, my middle child, volunteered. After his prayer, the supper conversation transitioned into talking about the time both of my sons asked Jesus to save them. It wasn’t long though that Eliana, my three year old daughter, began to cry. All of us around the table quickly asked her what was wrong. She wailed, “Jesus isn’t in my heart! He’s in their’s heart but not in my heart!” My wife and I tried to console her and tell her how Jesus loved her and He hears the cry of those who want Him. Some may say that I should have gotten into the deep discussion of how she already bears childlike faith and is not at an “age of accountability,” but lest I cause much confusion, I simply reiterated the love of Christ and the promise that all who calls upon Him will receive Hi…

On Base

There are many lessons that our children can teach us, if we would be so bold as to push aside our maturing pride and reflect in the way they marvel over things we so often overlook. We look at the child who steps out into the road not looking both ways as fool-hardy and ignorant, but we must also concede that this child is exercising trust without cynicism. This child steadfastly believes that he will step out into the street and walk across to his destination with no concern as to what might happen along the way. Such trust is something that, with age, will most certainly become jaded. Indeed, to have faith without arguing over the particulars is a beautiful thing. We, as adults, can worry, work, or even reason ourselves to death.
Of course, I have never shied away at revealing that I am often too cynical. Pessimism is certainly in my playbook. I dare say that my attitude has gotten worse, since I moved to a state that charges a ludicrous amount of school tax with the real estate t…

Wherever You Are (A ministry update)

I will not belabor you with reasons why I have been unable to write regular articles and updates. Obviously, between changing jobs and changing homes, our lives have seemed to be in overdrive. I cannot believe it has been almost five months since we moved to York. People often say that the older you get, the more time flies. Well, my birthday is around the corner and I have a sneaky suspicion that they are right. I am praising the Lord that this past week I have been able to be at our new home more, so I can help unpack and organize, build needed furniture, and simply spend time with my family. I am also rejoicing over the opportunities we have had to minister to youth. Just last week, we led our first Teen Activity at the church, and this past Sunday, we were able to take our new neighbor’s kids to church. It is wonderful to hear my children invite other kids around the neighborhood to church. Pray that we will be a light in our neighborhood. We want to be a light wherever we are, b…

Intentions and Assurance (Ministry Update)

It has been a while since my last update concerning my family and the ministry here in York. I intended to have an update ready by Christmas. I intended to keep writing articles each week on my blog. I also intended to work a while with Clear View Cleaning. Of course, many of our intentions, no matter how noble, hardly ever come to fruition. Plans can change and expectations can fail. Proverbs 16:9 states, “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.” Far too many times we tell God we will follow Him in faith, but then end up spending each day trying to analyze where we are headed and striving to fully understand the why’s of our walk. Rather than rest confidently in God’s love and wisdom, we want to question His own motives for us! We are like Israel in the wilderness quibbling over God’s ways. What our your intentions God? Do you really know what’s best for me? Are you angry with me and just stringing me along to punish me? What joy would fill our hea…

The Day After

Thanksgiving Day is over, but this does not mean that our devotion to thank God everyday should be. In Psalms 34:1, David declared, “I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” How often do words like "blessed", "thankful," or "undeserving" pass our lips from day to day? I find that in my own conversations I am an expert at utilizing the statements "I want this," "I gotta have that," and/or "I just need a little more." Oh how quick we are to set our hearts on the possessions of this life that we lose sight of the promises of the life that is to come! Black Friday has become our new holiday. On Thanksgiving, we manage to quickly tip our hats to God, while taking a meager glance at the blessings we have already received. Yet, once we feel we have paid enough lip service, we immediately cast our eyes on bigger and better things. For David, he not only made a commitment to praise God continu…

Leaving Church

Just a few years ago, studies revealed that less than 40% of people who claim a religious background go to church services. Around 28% claim to attend at least once a week, 8% once a month, and 4% once a year. Whether these statistics are accurate or not, for many churches, there is a steady decline in membership each year. I have often been asked why so many people, especially young adults, leave the church and what can be done to ensure stability. Of course, the solution is not so easily attained. There are many reasons people hardly darken church doors. It is all rooted in one’s perception of the church, ranging from misguided notions that faith equals ignorance to hurt emotions one faced during a time of church conflict. Try to describe your view of the American church in one word. I will list some that I have heard others use: hypocrites, cultish, uninformed, divided etcetera. Now, you will find that many of the people that say such things are only mouthing what they have seen, …