Monthly Archives: March 2011

FAMILY WEEK: “Men, 10 Signs You Married a Grown-up Child” Devo 3-31-11

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a, 11   4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.8 Love never fails…. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me…

I received a lot of feedback from men yesterday about the post “10 Signs You Married a Grown-Up Child”. It was written to women as they examine the relationship they have with their husbands. While I believe wholeheartedly that MEN ARE THE ONES WHO SHOULD TAKE THE LEAD IN MARRIAGE through sacrificial servant leadership, some men married women who seem completely grown up on the outside but on the inside are selfish, self absorbed and demandinglike a child….

Here are 10 ways to spot them ….

  1. She talks down to her husband (v 5)  “Love is not proud?”
  2. She talks to others about her husband (negatively) – ditto
  3. She is obsessed with how she looks to others (v 5) – “Love is not self seeking?”
  4. She keeps secrets but insists he share his. – (v 6) “Love always trusts?”
  5. She withholds “affection” as a means of getting her way. (v 6)  “Love is not easily angered?”
  6. She “pouts” when she does not get her way. (v 11) – “she still acts like a child?”
  7. While He thinks “pornography” is a no-harm-no-foul sin.SHE thinks that a diet of romance novels, fashion mags and materialism is fine. (v 6) “Love does not delight in evil…?”
  8. She loves her kids more than her husband … and herself more than her kids.  (v 5) “Love is not self seeking?”
  9. She holds a grudge against her husband and even her kids for how “under-appreciated” she is. (v 5) “Love keeps no record of wrongs?”
  10. She “protects the picture”. In other words, “all Hell may be breaking loose” at home but she makes sure everyone looks good, acts good and smells good in PUBLIC/CHURCH.  – that, by the way, teaches her family to pretend and fake their faith. The point is to BE good at home and not FAKE being good at home. (v 6) Love rejoiced in the truth?”

Verse 11 tells men (and women) to put away childish things and embrace the previous verses. Our wives must love us with patience (and man do we need it), gentleness, protection (emotionally), forgiveness (let us back in), truth, humility, trust, hope, etc…

Behind every mediocre man is a childish girl who demands her way.



I believe 1 Corinthians 13 tells you how to make sure that it happens.


FAMILY WEEK: “10 Signs You Married a “Grown Up” Child” Devo 3-30-11

1 Corinthians 13:4-8a, 11   4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.8 Love never fails…. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me…

After two days of a stomach bug I’m a little grumpy so I may come off a little bit harsh. However, I come across FAR TOO MANY married 20-40 something year old men who have a wife and kids BUT have not yet put away childish attitudes, selfishness and insensitivity.

Here are 10 ways to spot them ….

  1. His wife has to “drag him to church” (verse 5) – so much for spiritual leadership.
  2. He gripes that “she does not trust me” because she wants passwords, access to phone and text messages and accountability on the computer. (Verse 6) By the way, she should not have to ask and if he won’t give her these then she has good reason to doubt his motives.
  3. She makes him get a job and keep it.(verse 5)  How rude!
  4. He complains about how hard he works (when in reality he is a “lazy butt”!….from the Greek “lazibutticus) as an excuse for “sluffing off” his responsibilities at home. (Verse 5) –  “I work all day and come home to ….waa waa waa….  Oh brother!
  5. He sees getting a “new truck” as a NEED and a dishwasher, sofa or indoor plumbing as “WANT”…seriously?
  6. He gets mad that she tries to “control me”. (verse 5) – he is so sensitive to any correction that even the thought that he might be even a little “tensy-weensy” bit wrong offends him…sheesh!
  7. He thinks “pornography” is a no-harm-no-foul sin.(verse 6)  – it is killing him
  8. He expects a “pat on the back” for providing “food, clothing and shelter” for his family.(verse 7) all the while ignoring their spiritual and emotional needs.  (never mind the trophy he wants for emptying the dishwasher, wiping the seat or picking up his underwear)
  9. He loves his kids more than his wife…and himself more than his kids.(verse 11)  (in truth he loves how his family makes him look. As soon as they stop making him look good he is gone)
  10. He holds a grudge against his wife and even his kids for how they treat him.  “I deserve more respect” (Verse 5) – to that I say – “EARN IT!”

Verse 11 tells men to put away childish things and embrace the previous verses. We must love our wives with patience, gentleness, protection, forgiveness, truth, humility, trust, hope, etc…

As a man “on this journey I know it is a tough to follow but …that is why God tells us to start on it as young men!



Posted by on March 30, 2011 in Uncategorized


FAMILY WEEK: “The Filter of ME” Devo 3/28/11

This week I am trying to wrap my “brain” around what the Bible says about the kind of love I am to show to my wife and kids. This morning I’m looking at 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 which describe the kind of love I am to have for them and (opinion) the kind of love God has for us…

I Corinthians 13:4-8 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud5 It doesnot dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, alwaysperseveres. 8Love never fails.

One of the great blessings I was given as a kid was that my father modeled these verses. Though, to my knowledge, he was not a Christian and probably never read these verses, he displayed a lot of the “Christian qualities” layed out in them. He was loving, gentle, strong, patient, giving, fierce, forgave easily and more.

Because of his life and example, when God began to draw me to Himself (8th grade), it was easy to embrace a Heavenly Father that loved me and sacrificed for me….cuz I already saw it in Dad!

It is a sobering thought to know that my kids will see God through the “FILTER OF ME”. I am setting the stage for their embracing or their rejection of Jesus…YIKES!

A QUESTION WORTH ASKING:  Will my kids easily embrace Jesus because they have seen him in me?

How bout YOU?


FAMILY WEEK: “But Have Not Love” Devo 3/28/11

“The Love Chapter” is a staple in most Christian weddings. You know the one, “…love is patient, love is kind…” The blushing bride and the anxious groom listen as the minister exhorts the virtues of love the way “God intended”. After the quick ‘smooch and reception”, off they go into marital bliss, never to visit these verses again.

It is a shame because the LOVE CHAPTER was not written to be used exclusively for weddings. It was written to believers as “the most excellent way”(1 Cor. 12:31) to live a life for Jesus. It was written for anyone who wants to live as Jesus lived.

Today we look at verses 1 Cor.13:1-3. “If I speak in the tonguesa of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames,b but have not love, I gain nothing.

Then, as today, many Christians want the “cool gifts”. Who wouldn’t want to the gift of prophecy, wisdom, knowledge or faith? Nothing wrong with giving your stuff away or in essence being a martyr… BUT all of that is NOTHING if it is done without LOVE!

  • You mean my tithe means nothing unless I love?
  • You mean giving that guy a ride means nothing without love?
  • You mean paying for that kid to go to camp means nothing without love?
  • You mean that mission trip means nothing without love?
  • You mean serving at Faith Mission means nothing without love?
  • You mean providing for my family means nothing without love?
  • You mean teaching LIFE group means nothing without love?
  • You mean……yes that is what I mean already!


  • If I speak in tongues of men and angels and HAVE love…..
  • If I have the gift of prophecy and HAVE love….
  • If I can fathom all mysteries and HAVE love
  • If I have faith that can move a mountain and HAVE love
  • If I give away all my possessions to the poor and HAVE love
  • THEN you are living the way GOD intended and (opinion) God will absolutely bless you efforts in those areas.

This week we will look at 1 Corinthians 13 in some detail. I am convinced that if a Christian takes these verses and applies them to his life he will see his family, business, church and personal life dramatically change for the better.


Doctrine Week: “The Bible” Devo 3/25/11

Ok, while it is not really a “doctrinal position“, what we believe about The Bible is absolutely essential to the formation of our faith.

I’m one of “THOSE” people. I believe the Bible is true…every bit of it! I know some “high brows” who are more “enlightened” insist that believing ALL of The Bible is naive and foolish. Well I suppose they see themselves as “smart” enough to decide which parts are true and which parts are not…which parts are from an infinite God and which are just made up. Folks like that usually claim to be “thinkers” and “academic” and have God all “figured out”.

Well, for me…. I’m not sure I want to serve a God I can figure out!   Isaiah 55:8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. I’m going with inerrant, infallible, inspired Word of God. Call me a “hayseed” if you must, but God has used the Bible to dramatically change my life, the lives of others and guide my family…

THIS IS WHAT I BELIEVE  (in fancy talk) …. The Holy Bible was written by men divinely inspired and is God’s revelation of Himself to man. It is a perfect treasure of divine instruction. It has God for its author, salvation for its end, and truth, without any mixture of error, for its matter. Therefore, all Scripture is totally true and trustworthy. It reveals the principles by which God judges us, and therefore is, and will remain to the end of the world, the true center of Christian union, and the supreme standard by which all human conduct, creeds, and religious opinions should be tried. All Scripture is a testimony to Christ, who is Himself the focus of divine revelation.

Exodus 24:4; Deuteronomy 4:1-2; 17:19; Joshua 8:34; Psalms 19:7-10; 119:11,89,105,140; Isaiah 34:16; 40:8; Jeremiah 15:16; 36:1-32; Matthew 5:17-18; 22:29; Luke 21:33; 24:44-46; John 5:39; 16:13-15; 17:17; Acts 2:16ff.; 17:11; Romans 15:4; 16:25-26; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; Hebrews 1:1-2; 4:12; 1 Peter 1:25; 2 Peter 1:19-21. 2 Timothy 1:13; 3:16 2 Peter 1:20-21 Psalm 119:105, 160; 12:6 Proverbs 30:5


Doctrine Week: “Salvation” Devo 3/24/11

 This post will be limited to one thing…the Author of our salvation. I’ll not talk about “particular election” for my Calvinist friends, or “free will” for my Arminian brothers (this time), no debate about works or “Once saved always saved” and certainly not going to define a “true Christian” for my “legalist” buddies… just gonna deal with where salvation is found…in the atoning work of Jesus Christ….period.

Salvation is NOT found in good works, not in baptism, not in joining a church, not in Jihad, not in martyrdom, not in nature, not in Buddha, not in Muhammad, not in Confucius, not in Wicka, not in animism, not in religion, not in stuff, not in sex, not in a bottle, not in Glenn Beck, not in the Republican party, not in President Obama, not in a priest (unless you count Jesus as High Priest) not in crystals, not in Justin Bieber (nice kid though), not in spiritism, not in education, not in tree huggin, not in UFOs, not in the government (definitely not in the government), not in money, not in … well you get the idea.

The Doctrine of Salvation (Soteriology) Salvation is God’s free gift to us. We receive this gift through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ alone. Repentance means turning away from our sin and turning towards Christ. Faith means trusting in Christ alone for the remission of our sins. When we place our faith in Jesus Christ, His perfect obedience (sinless nature) is credited to us so that God sees us as the “righteousness of Christ”. Every person who truly is saved is eternally secure in the Lord Jesus Christ and will spend eternity in heaven, while those who die in their sins will spend eternity in hell.

Romans 6:23 Titus 3:5, John 14:6; 1:12 Galatians 3:26 Ephesians 2:8-9 Romans 5:1



Doctrine Week: “The Holy Spirit” Devo 3/23/11

I gotta tell you that I used to be kind of afraid of the Holy Spirit (like many of us conservatives) … I had only seen the “wacked out (nice suit though), shouting (nice hair though), sweaty, incoherent, TV preacher kind of “Holy Ghost” and I really did not want to have much to do with Him. I knew He was important so for a while I just created my own Holy Spirit….you know the one… nothing too far fetched or crazy. The one that illuminated the Scriptures, helped me make big decisions and worked quietly behind the scenes to comfort and prompt believers into being good citizens.

It was not until I read Billy Graham’s book the Holy Spirit, that I embraced the Holy Spirit as the very Spirit of God. He is not some “3rd stringer” or a “trick pony” to be paraded around. He is certainly not some emotional worship song to be “caught up” in. He is the following… 

He is the Spirit of God, fully divine. He is co-equal with the Father and the Son of God. He inspired holy men of old to write the Scriptures. Through illumination He enables men to understand truth. He is the divine helper, assistant, counselor and instructor. He is present in the world to make man aware of their need for Jesus Christ. He also lives in every Christian from the moment of salvation. At that moment He baptizes every believer into the Body of Christ. He exalts Christ. He convicts men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. He calls people to the Saviour, and effects regeneration. He provides the Christian with power for living, understanding of spiritual truth, and guidance in doing what is right. He cultivates Christian character, comforts believers, and bestows the spiritual gifts by which they serve God through His church.

Genesis 1:2; Judges 14:6; Job 26:13; Psalms 51:11; 139:7ff.; Isaiah 61:1-3; Joel 2:28-32; Matthew 1:18; 3:16; 4:1; 12:28-32; 28:19; Mark 1:10,12; Luke 1:35; 4:1,18-19; 11:13; 12:12; 24:49; John 4:24; 14:16-17,26; 15:26; 16:7-14; Acts 1:8; 2:1-4,38; 4:31; 5:3; 6:3; 7:55; 8:17,39; 10:44; 13:2; 15:28; 16:6; 19:1-6; Romans 8:9-11,14-16,26-27; 1 Corinthians 2:10-14; 3:16; 12:3-11,13; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13-14; 4:30; 5:18; 1 Thessalonians 5:19; 1 Timothy 3:16; 4:1; 2 Timothy 1:14; 3:16; Hebrews 9:8,14; 2 Peter 1:21; 1 John 4:13; 5:6-7; Revelation 1:10; 22:17.

2 Corinthians 3:17
Acts 1:8
Ephesians 1:13; 5:18
John 16:7-13; 14:16-27
1 Corinthians 2:12; 3:16
Galatians 5:25


Doctrine Week: “Jesus” Devo 3-22-11

Far from being the blue-eyed, fair-skinned, European “Jesus” that is often depicted in art,  My savior was more than likely dark-skinned, dark-eyed middle easterner…like his contemporaries. He walked the earth about 2000 years ago, was unjustly murdered and rose from the dead. What’s more … I believe that Jesus Christ is God’s Son. (I say “is” because I mean “right now”…as you read this… He is God’s son.) In His incarnation as Jesus Christ He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He is co-equal with the Father. He is both God and man. He lived a sinless human life and offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for the sins of His people by dying  a bloody death on a cross. Scripture tells us that “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins”  Hebrews 9:22 He died to become a substitutionary atonement for the sins of His people.(In other words…Jesus Christ was a substitute for me (and others) in that he took my (their) place and suffered my (their) punishment.  It was also a legal act whereby Christ fulfilled the law and lawfully paid the penalty of sin.)

He arose from the dead after three days to demonstrate His power over sin and death. He appeared to His disciples as the person who was with them before His crucifixion. He made provision for the redemption of men from sin. He is the One Mediator, fully God, fully man, in whose Person is effected the reconciliation between God and man. He ascended to Heaven’s glory and will return again someday to earth to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Genesis 18:1ff.; Psalms 2:7ff.; 110:1ff.; Isaiah 7:14; 53; Matthew 1:18-23; 3:17; 8:29; 11:27; 14:33; 16:16,27; 17:5; 27; 28:1-6,19; Mark 1:1; 3:11; Luke 1:35; 4:41; 22:70; 24:46; John 1:1-18,29; 10:30,38; 11:25-27; 12:44-50; 14:7-11; 16:15-16,28; 17:1-5, 21-22; 20:1-20,28; Acts 1:9; 2:22-24; 7:55-56; 9:4-5,20; Romans 1:3-4; 3:23-26; 5:6-21; 8:1-3,34; 10:4; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2:2; 8:6; 15:1-8,24-28; 2 Corinthians 5:19-21; 8:9; Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 1:20; 3:11; 4:7-10; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:13-22; 2:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6; 3:16; Titus 2:13-14; Hebrews 1:1-3; 4:14-15; 7:14-28; 9:12-15,24-28; 12:2; 13:8; 1 Peter 2:21-25; 3:22; 1 John 1:7-9; 3:2; 4:14-15; 5:9; 2 John 7-9; Revelation 1:13-16; 5:9-14; 12:10-11; 13:8; 19:16.

Matthew 1:22-23
Romans 1:3-4
Hebrews 4:14-15
Isaiah 9:6
Acts 1:9-11
John 1:1-5; 14:10-30, 14:16-17


Doctrine Week: “God” Devo 3/21/11

The USA Today reports that 86% of people in the United States believe in “God”. That is almost all of us!  I’m in Texas so I think it is around 112% here!  We have churches, temples, synagogues and even mosques…. everywhere!

For many of the 112% who believe in God, that belief makes very little difference in their behavior, perspective on life and choices they make. I would argue that a belief in God that does not transform us “inside and out” is really not a belief as much as a “preference“. We prefer to “believe” in God just in case their really is one.

But I don’t just “believe” in God in order to “hedge my bets” or to keep my job.  I believe in a personal almighty, loving, just, merciful, fierce God of the universe as described in Scripture. (see references below)

While there seems to be an epidemic of folks who follow a “God of their own design” (see Rob Bell or Brian McLaren) I believe in, worship and have “bet the farm” on the God of the Bible.

In a nutshell:

There is one God. (just one…. and you are not it…nor do you get to be someday). He is the Creator and Ruler of the universe.(The master builder, designer and creator) He eternally exists in three personalities: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three are co-equal and one. He is perfect in His many attributes of holiness, love, power, knowledge, justice, and mercy.

Genesis 1:1, 26, 27, 3:22
2 Corinthians 13:14
1 Peter 1:2
Matthew 28:19
Psalm 90:2


Posted by on March 21, 2011 in Devotional Thoughts


Walking Away? Friday Rant 3-18-11

Over the years I have seen some Christians “walk away” from their faith.

  • Some walked away because God did not “ZAP” their problems away but instead actually asked them to put forth some effort. They walked away and said, “God won’t help me”
  • Some found God to be uncontrollable. When He did not do their bidding, the way they thought He should. They walked away and said, “God doesn’t work”
  • Some had only learned a bunch of rules and found that mere “rules of life” were far too hollow to address the complex issues they were facing.  They RAN away and said, “God is too strict”

But probably the main reason I have seen people walk away from their faith (or at the very least put it “on the back shelf”) has to do with the following principle…


Hypocrisy (a pretense of having a virtuous character, moral or religious beliefs or principles, etc., that one does not really possess) is killing us.

  • I’m talking about the willful pretending that comes with learning how to “act like a Christian” and being able to speak “church-ese”.
  • These folks “met” Jesus and then, for whatever reason, started “acting like Christians”… instead of living for Jesus. Over time, they found their faith had become a “game to win” and their sins became toys to hide from others. Rather than their faith being an adventure to be lived and their sins “landmines” to avoid. They walked away and said “my faith is just a game”.
  • I believe that any Christian who pretends for a long period of time is in danger of “just walking away”. Dads, Moms, sons, daughters, pastors, Life Group Leaders etc…. all of us can pretend if we are not careful.

EVERY TIME we “fake it” in our faith we are driving a nail in our spiritual coffin. It creates in us all kinds of nasty traits like:

  • deception, cynicism, sarcasm, mistrust, callousness, judgmentalism, envy, jealousy, disingenuousness, strife, selfishness…… but wait… there is more…
  • these produce in us fear, anger, frustration, disillusionment  etc….and ultimately we just walk away like the rest.

Don’t agree? Examine your own life… in those times that you were willfully hypocritical (and we all have been once or twice) what did it produce in you? Ya see?

The ANSWER TO THIS PROBLEM is pretty simple”treat God like God” and not like your grandfather, waiter, crazy Uncle Lou  or trained dog.   See Him for who He is….REAL, CLOSE, ENGAGED, ABLE, FIERCE, CARING, STRONG… and CRAZY ABOUT YOU!  No need to pretend (fear of man) and no need to hide (pride)


Phil 1:6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

1John 2:5  But if anyone obeys his word, God’s lovec is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.

John 3:16  “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,f that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

(excerpt from “Things They Did Not Tell Me About My Faith” – Hixon Frank 2007)