Jesus reminds us in the Gospels of Matthew (7:7) and Luke (11:9) that we are to Ask, Seek, and Knock. We have all kinds of excuses for not asking God for various things, but Jesus still commands us to ask. Asking is a matter of obedience. Asking demands that we realize we are dependent upon …

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Zig Ziglar said gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions and often leads to more things for which to be grateful. I’m grateful to our Veterans. Yesterday, Priscilla and I attended the memorial service for a great friend, James Pope, who was also a veteran. I am thankful for his service to our country, …

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Zig Ziglar used to tell us that honesty and integrity are essential for success in every area of life. Stephen Covey tells us that honesty is both telling the truth and leaving the right impression. He says that integrity is about keeping promises and treating everyone by the same set of principles. Both honesty and …

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There are numerous variations of Jesus’ two great commandments found in the Old Testament. I found one again today in one of my favorite verses in Micah 6:8. What does God require of me? To act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with God. As I get older, life gets more complicated, but …

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Today was Grandpa Kasten’s birthday. I did a brief internet search for him. The internet didn’t know him. Too bad.  He was the dominant male role model for a good portion of my childhood. He was faithful, consistent, and conservative. Grandma had a stroke at the age of 51 and she lived her last 20 …

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John 10:4 says the sheep follow Jesus because they know His voice. We live with all kinds of voices that muffle the voice of God. Sin also warps our spirit’s ability to hear God’s voice. Yet, no voice is so important to hear as God’s voice. For me, I increasingly desire to hear the voice …

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Romans 5:3-5 tells us to glory in our sufferings because they develop perseverance, character, and hope. Hope doesn’t lead to shame because God loves us and has given us the Holy Spirit. Then we read the proof of God’s love is that when we were sinful and powerless, Christ died for us. The longer I …

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I rounded 60 years of life this last week. One thing I could have done better—and hope to do better at—is friendship. People have been far better friends to me than I have been to them. I have spent my life being agenda driven—too busy for investing in friendship. What have all my agendas accomplished? …

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The annual ordination service is always a moment of reflection for me. I relish in singing “A Charge to Keep I Have” in that service. I marvel at the quality of the new ordinands. I’m in my last decade of ministry and I too often wonder if I’ve lived up to my ordination calling. But …

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Dr. Henry Cloud defines character as the ability to meet the demands of reality. Reality tests our character. If our character revolves around ourselves, our abilities, our control, our goals, our resources, our wisdom, etc., we will keep our character and our reality from expanding. But both our character and reality will continually expand if …

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