The guy in front of me ordered a decaf grande sugar-free vanilla nonfat latte with extra foam and the milk heated to 140 degrees. Wow! And all I wanted was a coffee. You know, regular coffee in a cup. But then, all of a sudden, I felt totally out of my element. I looked around for a MacDonald’s … but, never mind, they too now have lattes and a wide variety of other coffee choices. It’s a whole new world out there and I realized the day of just a cup of coffee are long gone – just like I watched the passing of the $0.10 a cup – a bottomless cup with continual free refills – go the way of the dinosaurs.

So, I quickly looked at the menu to see all that they offer – (in a coffee shop – a menu) and was instantly gripped with fear as there were so many coffees to chose from – dark roast, light roast, Pike’s Peak, Breakfast blend… And, then there were the sizes to chose from. So, what ever happened to small, medium and large? Then, I could have a shot of this or that added to the coffee… I feel tired just rethinking about it. And, I was tired to start with as I was only half way home and waiting in Toronto for my flight in 5 hours.  Read more

Sermon Day

Every once in a while I get a decently uncluttered day to simply focus on upcoming teachings. Sometimes it is the teaching for the next Sunday, sometimes it is preparation for a future ministry opportunity, and other times it is simply a clear day to read, seek the Lord and ‘fish’ for ideas from the Spirit for upcoming sermons or a summer series… Today is such a day. A real luxury but a needed respite from the pace of the last two weeks in Ohio. And, Sunday is coming.

Often these days disappear with the regular daily activities of ministry or the pressure of deadlines and the demands of people. I am not good at protecting them. However, as my major task is to teach God’s Word it is important to have time away from the regular grind to simply focus on the Word and the voice of the Spirit. I have made a commitment to myself that I will spend more uninterrupted quality time in God’s Word so that His Spirit can bring fresh revelation and that the insights would be fresh and crisp and presented as if spoken directly from the heart of the Father who loves us so much.  Read more

God Is Touching Young Lives

The picture is of the youth in attendance last Sunday night in The River of Life Church in Butler, Ohio. God seriously touched lives and transformed the young people. The topic for the evening was the Baptism in the Holy Spirit and Speaking in Tongues. I taught briefly and they all took notes – then prayed for a release of the power for those already Baptized in the Holy Spirit. They were then instructed on how to get someone Baptized in the Spirit and they then prayed for all those who had yet to receive the encounter. Then, those who had yet to speak in tongues were ministered to by those who do speak in tongues and many had their private prayer language released. Read more

Priorities and Schedules

Well, we are now half way through the first month of 2013. Let me ask you, what has changed? If you are a regular somewhat normal human being – nothing has changed. All of the decisions, resolutions, hopes, and plans made just before or just after the busy Christmas-New Year’s season have come to nothing … and are already forgotten and part of ancient history.

If this is the case in your life then you are back to wishing there were 8 days in every week and hope that if and when God creates that day it would fall between Saturday and Sunday. Like a second Saturday. Read more

An Oak or a Squash

A hurry-up father once approached future U.S. President James A. Garfield while he was still the president of a local college: “Is there any way you can get my son through this institution faster than four years?” he implored. “Time is running short, and the business world is waiting!”

“It all depends on what you want,” Garfield wisely replied. “Squash will take only three months, but if you want an oak, that requires four years.” Read more

Bold Prayers

“Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God is not offended by your bold prayers. He is offended by anything less. If your prayers are not impossible to you, they are insulting to God. Why? Because they don’t require divine intervention. But ask God to part the Red Sea or make the sun stand still or float an iron axhead, and God is moved to omnipotent action.” Page 13 of The Circle Maker

When I read this just the other day I found myself both agreeing with the author but also convicted by the Holy Spirit. I realized that my prayers have become somewhat routine and are not stretching my faith as they should. This also means I am not listening enough because, if I was and thus praying in His will and according to what He is speaking to be, then I would be praying really bold and radical prayers in agreement with what is on my heavenly Father’s heart for that day. I repented. I am now praying bigger and bolder prayers and doing so with a much greater level of expectation and anticipation.  Read more

A new Beginning

A new year has begun and the first week is about done. Work has come back on line and so life has returned to some semblance of normal whatever that may look like in your life. In my life that means I am back on the road as I leave today for 12 days out of the city in Ohio – two different locations, many different ministry opportunities, and many people to meet in teams and one-on-one. Everyone’s normal is different but for each one it is the reality they must deal with. One is not better than another – just different. Read more

The New Reality

The new reality is that we are all electronically connected. Almost everyone today has a cell phone, most have personal computers (laptops, iPads, tablets), and even today’s iPods can pull in emails and text messages… We can be instantly connected to people worldwide through social media such as Facebook and Twitter. Just yesterday I received a email from a believer in New Zealand looking for information and input on a spiritual issue they are facing – late last night I was notified that a ministry in the United States is now connected to my ministry through Twitter as they signed up to receive my ministry’s Tweets. Ask a question – immediately people are looking the answer up on Google. Can’t spell a word – the on-line dictionary will help. Even I am now reading ebooks… This is the new reality. Read more

Are You Growing Spiritually?

If you are growing spiritually, those you lead and those you influence (children, friends, family) will too. Your personal progress, productivity and passion matter… And, as a disciple of the Lord Jesus (see the last seven blogs) we are called to be constantly growing, adjusting, changing.

Here’s the problem as I see it… Many people who become born again simply believe that they “have arrived” and now that they are saved, safe, secure in Jesus, and sure of Heaven as a final resting place – that they have all they need and can simply go on living as they always have. The “salvation package” is simply tacked on to an already existing life with no interest in or even thought about changing and growing. This, regretfully, describes most Christians that I know – most, not all. Read more

Connected and Belonging

Ever felt like you know a number of people in the local church but really don’t know a lot of people? You know what I mean – you know their names and a little about them but you really don’t KNOW them. The conversations you have with them are shallow and always really about nothing … weather, hockey, how the kids are, how the week went… We meet and greet people on a Sunday but we never really come to know them personally. We don’t see or know their heart, their hopes and dreams, their real life lived under the surface – under the masks we all wear. It is friendly enough but it is not good enough and not what God designed the Church to be. It is to be a family, an army, a Body… All telling us that there must be connectedness and belonging if the Christian faith – our personal faith in the Lord – is to be all that He intends it to be.

Read more