Day 19

40 days of water facts. fact #21.

Today we reached Day 19. Today we drank something other than water. After a rough night with little sleep due to a teething child, we both had a cup of coffee.

2 Cor. 12:9 says, "But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me."

Yes, we were weak. However, tomorrow is a new day. We were able to rely on something other than water to wake us up and get us through our day. It makes me appreciate all the more that not everyone has a choice. Many can't even get clean drinking water.

That is the ultimate goal. We will still be contributing to this project.


I Need Your Help!

The time has come.

I need your help!

I am writing a book and I need your stories.

Have you been burned by church in the past? I am looking for your bad church experiences!

Have you been blessed by a church? I am looking for your good church experiences!

How has God used the bad experiences to draw you closer to Him?

Did you ever walk away for a time?

Every story will be kept in confidence unless you give me permission to share it but I would love to talk with you about it.

Please shoot me an email or your email address and I will write you back ASAP.



Separation Anxiety

As a teen, I struggled with separation anxiety quite a bit. The feeling was quite overwhelming. I would break out into a sweat, mutter to myself, get extremely nervous and panicked feeling.

I was not medically diagnosed, because it was a spiritual problem.

See, I was afraid of being separated from God for all eternity.

I am not making light of people who suffer. I was really petrified. My fear was real and almost crushing at times.

It started the week I gave my life to Christ. I was 13 and not versed in Biblical knowledge. Being the inquisitive type, I made the mistake of asking my assistant pastor, "What happens if I sin, now that I am a Christian?"

Instead of using wisdom and pointing me to Scriptures on confession, repentance, and so forth, this man told me I would lose my salvation!

That pastor did not qualify or expand on his comment....EVER!

Thus began my long nightmare.

Because, of course, I made mistakes and committed sin AFTER I became a Christian. With no one to offer wise counsel and being spiritually immature, I would "get saved" over and over and over, week in and week out. I was in bondage to fear.

This continued for YEARS! I would "rededicate" my life to the Lord whenever I heard an altar call. I would say the sinners prayer every time I turned around.

I was battling in my mind to the point where I began to suffer physical manifestations of stress!

A breaking point came when I literally was forced into bed. I was in such pain I could hardly move. The Lord offered relief through a well spoken word. I was asked by my Mom if I was dealing with anything spiritual. I admitted my doubts and fears. She left the room and I literally slid to the floor and truly repented. Except this time, I knew what I was repenting of and for: fear and doubt!

I would love to say the problem instantly stopped. It didn't. However, the Lord led me into His Word where I read a few Scriptures that became very important to me in the battle:

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? (Romans 8:35)

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)

Today, free from this fear, I realize how important it is to use Godly wisdom when answering questions about faith. I think the best answer is always to encourage the person to go back to the Word themselves!


Road Trip Inspiration

I love worship music. Singing praise to God just excites me and I feel like I connect with the Father more when I praise Him!

One of my favorite worship leaders has always been Keith Green. His songs just resonate with me. I feel his passion desire to go deeper with God just emanated from the songs he wrote. Even 29 years after his passing, his songs still seem fresh today.

I found a Keith Green Live CD this week at the Salvation Army and it became perfect road trip music as we set off as a family to our daughters figure skating competition.

As we went cruising down the road, my wife and I sang to some of our favorite worship songs.

Interspersed throughout the CD were little comments and encouragements from his concerts. One of the things he mentioned was our focus and how we get so caught up looking at ourselves we fail to see the Father!

That sent my wife and I into a fun discussion on the topic of focus and out of it came a great brainstorming experience.

In the end, my wife and I came up with a drama that we will begin working on soon. I think it will be fun. More importantly, the focus is on the King of Kings!



I have been a bit infrequent of late.

Part of that is work related as there is a boatload of stuff on my plate.

Part of it is intentional as I am really meditating on Ecclesiastes 3 right now.

In particular, the latter part of 3:7 which says there is a time for silence and a time to speak.

The word that is gnawing at me is right there:


I shared on Ecclesiastes 3 at church last week and something was said that just brought that word home to me.

I think silence is something we don't practice enough in Christianity.

It got me thinking though and I have been digging into the Word and looking at themes like:

"Being Still Before God, Silence, Contemplation and Reflection"

I just felt that I needed to take some time and reflect on these themes.

Only in listening to the Father can we really know His heart.


Day 6

Sunday was a feast day...

and feast we did.

Sipping my coffee, I really came to appreciate how "good" we have it in N. America.

Especially in light of this fact:

40 days of water facts. fact #35.

So far over $10,000 has been pledged for Blood: Water Mission's work in Africa.

As we are nearing the end of Day 6, I am finding it is not as hard to resist coffee and other drinks. I am finding it is VERY HARD to ignore the suffering in places like Africa and Japan.

What can you do to help?


Day 3

40 days of water facts. fact #37.

Well Day 3 is nearly done and it hasn't gotten much easier. I am fighting a cold/flu right now and only drinking water is a challenge.

Of course, considering that 884 million people are drinking from poor water sources, the fact that I can drink clean water is a blessing.

I have been looking at some of the 300 Scriptures on the poor and needy. Amazing that in both the Old and New Testament, God shows His concern and love for the poor. How can we do any less?


Day One

40 days of water facts. fact #40.

So today was Day 1 of our 40 day water challenge.

It was a lot tougher kickoff for me this year than it was last year.

As Sarah and I started the day, we talked about our coffee consumption and both realized that, WOW, we drink a lot of coffee. More than at any time in our life.

That was an eye-opening fact I wasn't expecting.

I also noticed how many people around me talked about coffee. Clients would sit in my office and talk about the good cup of coffee they grabbed on the way in the door, how good the coffee smelled, etc.

Sarah said she noticed today how she would normally grab a cup of coffee instead of a healthy mid-day snack. She also feels it is a privilege she has taken for granted. A privilege she missed while sitting in a cold ice arena watching our daughter figure skate.

I am keeping Luke 10:27 in my mind as we go through these 40 days: "He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”

You can read about our 40 day journey on this blog and also track our drink total here.


40 Days of Water

Last year I decided to go off of coffee for 40 days! It was hard, very hard. However it was well worth it. (Pun Intended!) The money I saved went to the Blood:Water Mission in order to provide clean drinking water in Africa.

This year I'll be doing it again. This time, I will be joined by my wife, Sarah. We will take the challenge together and will blog about the process and the needs that the Blood:Water Mission are trying to address.

Will you join us in the 40 Day of Water challenge?


Do I Really?

Do we really want to know the God of the universe?

That was the question rattling around in my head recently. Do we--scratch that-- do I want to truly know the King of Kings and Lord of Lords? Do I want to know Him more?

I love the wording of this Scripture in the God's Word Translation:

"I want your loyalty, not your sacrifices. I want you to know me, not to give me burnt offerings."
(Hosea 6:6)

See, for years I thought I knew God. I thought I knew His character, His ways. I would tell people what God was like and how He acted in certain situations or felt about certain sins. I didn't think I was being presumptive. I was quoting things I had been taught in church. I was pointing out Scriptures as they had been shown to me...usually out of context.

Only in the last couple of years have I begun to find out how much I didn't know. It started when I re-read the Sermon on the Mount. I really started meditating on that passage of Scripture and, dare I say it, I found a Jesus I didn't recognize. Moving from that passage I re-read the 4 Gospels and found a Jesus I never knew before. One who showed grace to the sinner and had his harshest words for the "religious" leaders of the day.

I moved back into the Old Testament, and even there, I found a God of grace, of mercy. I always thought of God's character as displayed in the OT as being a bit more "harsh and judgmental." Instead I found a God of compassion, long suffering and grace. He still judged sin but He was constantly wooing His people towards repentance.

I realized I had always viewed God the way I wanted Him to be, merciful to me and harsh on the other "sinners" around me. I wanted Him to move the way I felt He should and to heal those I felt needed it. I thought I should have the answers when people doubted God and that I should defend Him a all costs.

Man, I have been so wrong.

My prayers of late have been to just know Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I am only just now seeing that I don`t have to have all the answers, that God`s ways are truly higher than mine.

Which, I think, is really a key point. God is bigger than I think. That scares me, which goes back to my first question. Do I really want to know the God of the universe, the One who moves His way and heals His way? Do I want God to be God, or my interpretation of Him?

The more I know, the more I realize I don`t know. In fact, I know enough to know I don`t know what I think I know. What I do know is I have a Savior who does.


Walking On By

Recently two elders within YWAM came up to our church plant in Smithers, BC for a special service. One of the men, Paul, shared the story of Jesus walking on the water and Peter stepping out to meet Him. You can read that story in Matthew 14:22-33 and Mark 6:45-52.

Paul briefly mentioned the later part of Mark 6:48. It was a little aside and not something he focused on but it started rolling around in my mind and I have been blessed by meditating a bit more on that Scripture.

The verse says, "Then He saw them straining at rowing, for the wind was against them. Now about the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea, and would have passed them by."

Why would Jesus pass them by?

While thinking on that I, also realized how often I feel that way in my own life. I feel as if Jesus is passing me by and doesn't see the storm I am in. Work, family, life, pastor, friends, interests, it all seems to swirl around me in a bit of a "perfect storm."

I feel as if I am rowing against the wind.

Yet in that storm, Jesus walked close enough for the disciples to see Him. They cried out for they couldn't see Him clearly. As they did, He drew closer and revealed Himself more fully. He got into the boat with them, calmed the storm and they worshiped Him!

It is a comfort to me to know that, though it may feel like Christ is passing me by in the midst of the storm, in reality He is closer than I think!

All I have to do is cry out to Him.