Standing Firm

Oak Trees and Dandelions

An enormous oak tree stood in the front yard of the house where I grew up. I saw it literally every day for years when I was a kid. For me, to walk past that oak tree on my way to school was as natural as breathing. The tree was so huge I couldn’t even […]

GOD BLESSES GOOD WORK

He who tills his land will have plenty of bread, But he who pursues worthless things lacks sense. –Proverbs 12:11 “Work” is a four-letter word, but there’s nothing profane about it. Sometimes it’s hard, and sometimes it’s dirty, but God values it as a godly virtue when done for His glory. Those who pursue worthless […]

IS VIRTUE TRULY IT’S OWN REWARD?

What to do when your actions aren't getting the results you want.

When we were kids my brother had a T-shirt that read “Virtue is it’s own punishment.” I didn’t get the saying then, but now I know it’s a satirical slant on the saying, “Virtue is it’s own reward,” meaning that even if you aren’t rewarded for doing a good deed, the deed itself is reward […]

ACTIONS THE CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY CAN TAKE TO HELP HEAL THE RACIAL DIVISION IN OUR NATION

9 Actions we can take to help heal our nation.

To say our nation is hurting right now is an understatement. Sometimes as average citizens we leave matters of national security, law, and civil unrest to politicians and law enforcement; and those who’ve taken an oath to protect and serve certainly play a role in keeping peace and resolving conflict in our nation. But police […]

“Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure. . . than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”

Teddy Roosevelt

THE PETTINESS OF CHURCH

Loving people enough to overlook the small things

“I can tell you what I don’t miss,” she snapped. “I don’t miss the pettiness of church.” Since I’m a pastor, her words hit me like an iron skillet in the face. I felt defensive, but I knew what she meant. I’d felt the same way myself, but I’d never used the phrase “the pettiness […]

In God’s Employment: Post 3 in series

If work is my worship, now what?

I heard a story about three brick-masons who were laying brick for a grand cathedral in Europe. A tourist taking a walking tour through the cathedral engaged one of the workers and asked, “What are you doing?” The laborer answered, “I’m laying brick.”  The tourist looked at a second worker and asked, “What are you […]

In God’s Employment: Post 2 in series

How the redeeming work of Christ transforms our agenda

WILLIAM WILBERFORCE was a member of the British parliament and also a follower of Christ, who made a serious commitment to follow the Lord Jesus. Wilberforce believed God might actually want him to prepare for professional ministry so he sought counsel from a mentor of his, John Newton, the slave-trader turned pastor, who wrote the song […]

In God’s Employment: How a Christian’s work ethic reflects his or her love for God.

Post 1 in series

Ted Williams was one of the greatest baseball players of all time. He’s mostly remembered for his ability to hit a baseball, but people who knew him say he had one of the best work ethics of anyone who’s ever played the game. In 1941 his batting average for the season was .406. No one […]