Leaves are Starting to Fall

September 20, 2018



When is it Autumn? What marks the beginning of the new season that we call “Fall?” It could be identified by a change in weather, colors appearing on the trees, or the fact that football is back on TV? 

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 says this…

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Who Stole The Honor From American Politics?

September 13, 2018


There are things I read about the way politics are working these days that makes my stomach turn and my heartache. It seems that the healthy dissent and honorable debate that the founding fathers engaged in is not what we are seeing today.

I am aware that you can’t paint all people in politics with the same broad brush of generalizing and stereotypes, but there are people on the left and on the right side of the aisle who have forgotten honor in their discourse. The name calling, accusing, mud slinging and attempts to tear others down show that our culture is slipping more and more into a shame and blame society. 

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Honoring Ministry

September 6, 2018


Years ago when I was the Youth Pastor here at Neighborhood Church I was in a “reverent prayer position” I heard a voice out of nowhere whispering to me, “You will be leading an “honoring ministry.”

I looked up to see who had said that to me, but no one was present --just two other church staff members who were praying about other things nearby. I quickly decided that either the Lord had spoken to me or I was going crazy.

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One of the Best Ways to Meet Your Neighbors

August 29, 2018


I was walking our two labra doodles one evening and was delighted to get to connect with quite a few of my neighbors. Our dogs are such happy, goofy, furry friends that they attract all sorts of attention – which gives me the chance to meet all sorts of people. 

By the end of the walk I found myself sitting on the sidewalk surrounded by my two dogs and two huge beautiful Newfoundland dogs, both licking my face complete with a long dripping drool stream. 

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God's Storage

August 23, 2018

"Dad, the Lord has good things in storage…”

That’s what my ten year old, Mimi, told me last night.

I didn’t know if Mimi had heard a new phrase at youth group last night that I was unfamiliar with or not, so I asked her the clarifying question. “Mimi, did you mean the Lord has good things in store for us?”  She agreed that’s exactly what she said. 

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Modeling Godly Disappointment

August 16, 2018

I breathed a deep sigh as I nervously opened the letter...

This was a letter that I had been waiting for the last six months with the news about whether or not I had been awarded a grant for my sabbatical next summer. I have been praying and believing the Lord for good things, and for His favor on this request. 

My heart stopped as I read the words, “Unfortunately, your proposal was not among those selected for funding this year.”

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Lessons from a Glorious Sunset

July 19, 2018

The sunset sings us a new melody of God’s love every evening.

Psalm 19:1-6(NIV) 

1 The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
2 Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge.3 There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard.
4 Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun, 5 which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. 6 It rises at one end of the heavens and makes its circuit to the other; nothing is hidden from its heat.

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Jesus is Going With You

June 14, 2018

We’ve never launched a kid before…

This weekend Linda and I will move our firstborn down to Southern California. She will turn 20 in a few months and has been planning for this day over the past year. While she doesn’t have a job secured yet, she has saved up her money and has a few months before she will have to find another place to live. 

For those who haven’t launched a kid – they scoff and say, “It’s no worries; she’s ready; she’ll be fine.” Others grimace and put their hand on our shoulder promising to pray for her in the coming days. Since I haven’t done this before I don’t know how to feel or what this will be like. 

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June 7, 2018

As humans we can’t help but ask that burning question when things go dreadfully wrong, when death comes knocking at our door, or diagnosis corners us in a fearful paralysis.

I was working out with a friend last week who felt overwhelmed by several premature deaths in his social circles. He was looking to me, the pastor, and asking the “why” question.

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A Call To Serve

May 17, 2018

Upon visiting the missions cottage that is getting a serious facelift on our campus, I was struck by how long a vision can survive. 

It was 45 years ago that Pastor Ken Backlund had a vision for housing Alliance missionaries on our church grounds.  The house was built by a young Marvin Root, with help from scores of volunteers.  The first use of the house was for a family who worked on staff in the office and on the grounds.  Over the years the church realized that it was helpful to have someone on the grounds, but the purpose for the house serving as a respite for international workers took a back seat to practical needs.  The Blumert family and the Emmons family called this cottage “home” for many years as they served on our church staff. 

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