Wednesday, December 27, 2017

The Least, The Lost, The Lonely

This time of year can be very hard for many. I have
been pondering 'loneliness.' It has taken me back
to the time of Job and Abraham, to Samuel, Isaiah,
Jeremiah, King David, Esther, Ruth, Naomi, and to
Jesus. No one expects loneliness, leastness, but for
most of us, our lives are lived between the moun-
tain peaks of fullness, plenty, good health and close
friends.Yes, we have face time, twitter, texting and
the telephone, but it doesn't replace a cup of coffee
and a real person. :)

I think Mary was one of the loneliest of women.
We don't know what her family and friends believed
about her pregnancy--gossip. The baby was born
without her mother. Mary was probably not more
than fifteen or sixteen. The Bible does not speak of
a midwife in attendance but in my minds eye, I can
see her...What we do see shows a happy couple and
the baby, but birth is messy, exhausting, and scary.
Added to all of this was poverty.

It is when our expectations don't line up with reality
that we get into trouble. I saw a short Vid Angel
piece yesterday called The Shepard. It is at the 47
minute mark of a sermon by JD Farag, a Palestinian
Pastor in Hawaii. The video is very well done, with
many subtle pictures.

Begin at the 47 mark for the video--or watch it all.

Monday, December 25, 2017


Christmas morn and we waken to new fallen snow with
sun flaming the peaks far off. I sit here pondering the
birth of a babe born two thousand years ago. God came
in the flesh. He is called Emmanuel, God with us. Every-
thing changed that day. Everything. Man is still trying to
wipe out Christmas in hopes that this birth will be forgot-
ten, annulled.

Last night we went to a precious Christmas Eve service.
It was all about Him. We joined the Shepherds and the
Wise Men in worship. My Christmas present to you is
a Hallelujah Song that may be familiar to many of you
but with different words.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

His Birth; His Death

God forbid that I should boast except in 
the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. 
Galatians 6:14

When you act in confident faith in what our Lord 
did on the cross, a supernatural identification with 
His death takes place immediately. The proof that
your old life is the amazing ease with
which the life of God in you now enables you to
obey the voice of Jesus Christ.  
Oswald Chambers

Reader, do you understand this? Have you come
to the place where you KNOW your old man
is dead? See Romans 6

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

A Softly Closing Door

For everything there is a season. Ecc 3:1

Yesterday a door closed softly. David, Sarah and Noah
left to board a plane as they headed to Belgium, David's
family and Christmas. They have lived with us for the
past four months. Overall we have blended well to-
gether. BUT, suddenly the sounds of a six year old at
play and the long dinners together--not to mention the
games in the evening,-- are over. In the sadness of their
leaving comes a joyful satisfaction and gratefulness for
the unbroken unity we had together. Yes, it is far too
quiet, Sarah did not walk with her Dad and our dog to-
day at 8AM, nor did a sleepy Noah give me a warm hug.
The time went by so fast. They plan to live in Europe
for a few years, where a big family is waiting to em-
brace them. It will be David's first Christmas with his
family in 17 years!

The last week has been intense. On Thursday the 14th
of December David became a US citizen. Friends flew
in for the festivities and our beds were full. On Saturday
evening we celebrated with a big party, the highlight be-
ing a fire work display with music that David put to-
gether. It was pretty awesome as we heard 'Im Glad to
Be an American' and 'God Bless America' timed with
the sound of the fire crackers. Oh, did I mention that
David left on the 14th, right after the swearing in to fly
to Seattle where he could obtain a passport in one day?

So, why are they leaving? They want Noah to get to
know his cousins, the culture and the language and there
are some business opportunities for David. We are pray-
ing for a place to live, and for Sarah to learn the lan-
guage quickly. She and Noah have been studying Dutch
on Rosetta Stone. Noah is outgoing and has no problem
with mistakes! He will be in first grade.

Reader, I can understand why God has had me in the
book, Victory in Christ. I need to give thanks for the past
months and walk forward in Christ and in His victory.
Yes, a door has closed but all eternity stretches out be-
fore us with a wide open door ahead.  

Monday, December 11, 2017

Heavy Seas

He has given his very great and precious promises. 2 Peter 1:4

When a shipbuilder erects a boat, does he do so only to keep it 
on the scaffolding? No, he builds it to sail the seas and to weather 
the storms. In fact, if he does not think of strong winds and hurri-
canes as he build it, he is a poor shipbuilder.

In the same way, when God made you a believer, He meant to 
test you. And when He gave you promises and asked you to trust 
them, He made His promises suitable for times of storms and 
high seas. Do you believe that some of His promises are counter-
feit, similar to a life vest that looks good in the store but is of no 
use in the sea?

We have all seen swords that are beautiful but are useless in war, 
or shoes made for decoration, but not for walking. Yet God's shoes 
are made of iron and brass, and we can walk all the way to hea-
ven, without wearing them out. And we could swim the Atlantic 
a thousand times in His life vest, with no fear of ever sinking. His 
Word of promise is meant to be tried and tested. 

There is nothing Christ dislikes more than for HIS people to pub-
locally profess Him and then not use Him. He loves for us to make
use of Him, for His covenant blessings are not simply meant to be
looked at but should be appropriated. Our Lord Jesus has been 
given to us for our present use. Are you making use of Him as you

O beloved, I plead with you not to treat God's promises as some-
thing to be displayed in a museum but to use them as everyday
sources of comfort. And whenever you have a time of need, trust
the Lord.  Charles H Spurgeon

Go to the depths of God's promise,
And claim whatsoever you will;
The blessings of God will not fail you,
His Word will surely fulfill.  Anonymous

How can God say no to something He has promised?

Reader, there is such joy in trusting our Savior, the all sufficient
One, Sovereign, all powerful, Creator of the heavens and the
earth. How can we lose?
He lives in us and is for us!

Thursday, December 7, 2017


Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes
on the vines; though the olive crop fails and the fields
produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will be joyful in God my savior. Hab 3:17-18

I ask you to observe what a disastrous situation is being
described in this passage and to notice how courageous
is the faith that is expressed. It is as if the writer were ac-
tually saying, "Even if I am forced to undergo the extreme
condition of not knowing where to find my next meal, and
although my house is empty and my fields yield no crops
and I see the evidence of divine pestilence where I once
saw the fruits of God's plentiful providence, 'yet will I re-
joice in the Lord.'"

I believe that these words are worthy of being written for-
ever in stone with a diamond tool. Oh, by God's grace, may
they be deeply etched on the tablets of each of our hearts!
Although the above verse is very concise, it nevertheless im-
plies or expresses the following thoughts of the writer: that
in his time of distress he would flee to God; that he would
maintain his spiritual composure under the darkest circum-
stances; and that in the midst of everything, he would de-
light himself with a sacred joy in God and have cheerful ex-
pectations of Him.

Heroic confidence! Glorious faith! Unconquerable love!
Philip Dodridge

Reader, does not this kind of faith tug at your heart strings?
Do you know that as we pray for the persecuted all over the
world, those suffering for their faith in Jesus, that we read
of this kind of faith and also of how God met deep needs?
Oh, that we could grasp the depth of both His love and His
power on our behalf!

If you have a heart for the persecuted church check out these

Touch of Christ Ministries--to the lost in the Middle East.
We have met them and this couple is quite awesome. They
send out a letter each month of how God is changing hearts. website

Voice of the Martyrs who help the suffering church all over
the globe has a monthly newsletter with amazing stories. or call 800-747-0085

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Devastating Delays

Yet when Jesus heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed where
he was two more days. John 11:6

This miraculous story begins with the following declaration:
"Jesus lOVED Martha, and her sister and Lazarus." It is as 
if God were teaching us that at the very heart and foundation 
of all His dealings with us, no matter how dark and mysterious 
they may be, we must dare to believe in and affirm His infinite, 
unmerited, and unchanging love. Yet love permits pain to occur.

Mary and Martha never doubted that Jesus would quickly a-
vert every obstacle to keep their brother from death, "yet when 
he heard that Lazarus was sick, he stayed..."

What a startling word: "YET!" Jesus refrained from going not 
because he did not love them but because He did love them! It 
was His love alone that kept Him from hurrying at once to 
their beloved yet grief-stricken home. Anything less than infin-
ite love would have rushed instantly to the relief of those belo-
ved and troubled hearts, in an effort to end their grief, to have 
the blessing of wiping and stopping the flow of their tears, and 
to cause their sorrow and pain to flee. Only the power of divine 
love could have held back the spontaneity of the Savior's tender-
heartedness untill the angel of pain had finished his work.

Who can estimate the great debt we owe to suffering and pain? 
If not for them, we would have little capacity for many of the 
great virtues of the Christian life. Where would our faith be if 
not for the trials that test it; or patience without anything to en-
dure or experience and without tribulations to develop it. How
would it be possible to shout,"victory" without suffering?

Reader, we are in the season of the Incarnation, God became
flesh. Mary, Martha, and their brother had no clue that the
One they loved would die for their sins. Jesus did tell Martha
that He was the Resurrection and Life, but not what it would
cost Him. Our precious Lord is beyond words...

Do Not Be Discouraged

You are my King and my God who decrees victories
for Jacob. Psalm 44:4

There are no enemies to your growth grace, or to your
Christian work, that were not included in your Savior's
victory. Remember, "The Lord said to Joshua, "Do not 
be afraid of them because...I will hand all of them o-
ver to (you).'"(Josh 11:6.) Also recall the fact that
when you resist your enemies, they "will free from you"
(James 4:7) And remember what Joshua said to the
people: "Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Be 
strong and courageous." (Josh 10:25) The Lord is 
with you,mighty men of valour" (Josh 1:14,) and you
are mighty because you are one with the Mightiest.
So claim your victory!

Whenever your enemies are closing in on you, claim
victory! Whenever your heart and your flesh fail you,
look up and claim victory! Be sure you claim your
share in the triumph that Jesus won, for He won it
not for Himself alone but for us all. Remember that
you were in Him when He won it--so claim victory!

Count Christ's victory as yours and gather the spoils
of the war. Neither the giant "descendants of Anak"
(Num 13:33) nor fortified cities need intimidate or de-
feat you. You are part of the conquering army. Claim
your share in the Savior's victory, from Joshua!
FB Meyer

Reader, I am not the one focused on the word, 'victory.'
God is.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Perils and Pitfalls

The following contains the various pitfalls we can encounter
in living a victorious life in Him. It is the last of this topic
from the little book, Victory in Christ. I am so impressed by
the contents that I am giving it to friends this Christmas.

Two perils are presented in the last chapter of our book:
our supposing on the one hand, that the longer we continue 
in victory, the safer we are; on the other hand, that if we sin 
we have broken our victory, and are weaker and less certain 
of continued victory. However, the victory is not relative, 
not a matter of degree. It is the freedom with which 
"the Son sets men free." John 8:36. 
It is not that we are given "sinless perfection." We always 
have the flesh and can fall into self, into sin, any moment 
that we fail to trust Christ for His victory in us.

If Satan cannot tempt us in one area he will go to the next. 
He will push us to go further than God is asking, get us into 
asceticism, or push us into following a pattern that God has 
given us in the past, but which may not be what God wants 
in the present. We may get the mistaken idea that when we 
have a choice between something hard and something easy, 
the hard thing is always God's will. God's leadings never 
nag, worry or harass. Satan's suggestions do. 
"Beloved, believe not every spirit, 
but prove the spirits, 
whether they are of God." 
1 John 4:1. 

Do not depend on experiences. God wants us to trust, not in 
supernatural experiences, but in Himself. It is so easy to trust 
in our feelings and to look at how we are trusting when joy 
flows. Spurgeon said this: 
"I looked at Jesus, and the dove of peace flew into my heart. 
I looked at the dove of peace, and she flew away."

Then there is the peril of pride. Almost without realizing it 
the Christian can have condescending thoughts and speak
negatively regarding a fellow Christian. It is easy to forget 
that victory only comes in Christ. We as Christians can be-
come unteachable with hearts closed to counsel. May God 
deliver us from this subtle danger of unwillingness to learn 
from others. He is our humility...
Charles G Trumbull

"Amid all these things we are more than conquerors 
through him who has loved us," and "To God be the
thanks who in Christ ever heads our triumphal pro-
cession, and by our hands waves in every place that
sweet incense, the knowledge of him. "
Weymouth, Rom 8:37, 2 Cor 2:14

Reader, thus ends the topic, for now, on victory in Christ.
The book can be found at Christian Book Distributers--
CBD. The writers of the 19th century, early twentieth cen-
tury have something that I don't find in most books of to-
day. My desire is to be part of the Church of Philadelphia
instead of the Church of Laodicea. Jesus told this church
that it was:
"Wretched, poor, pitiable, blind and naked...
Those whom love, I reprove and discipline, 
so be zealous and repent... (Turn around)
The one who conquers, 
I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, 
as I also conquered 
and sat down with my Father on his throne. 
He who has an ear, 
let him hear 
what the Spirit says to the churches." 
(Revelation 3)

Dearest reader, the hour is late--look at the headlines--.
Take a ball of twine and color the tip black or red, then
pull it out until there is a pile of string around your feet.
The tip is your life here--
and then comes forever.
It is time to get serious!

Friday, December 1, 2017

The Kickback

It is not a once-for-all victory; it is a moment by moment victory.
It is the believer looking away from all else and "Unto Jesus, 
the author and finisher of our faith." Heb 12:2

But what a perilous life it is! Satan hates it; for it is an adver-
tisement of the sufficiency of his Conqueror, Jesus Christ. To 
trust Christ for complete victory is to be moved up to the front 
line of trench warfare; and front line trenches are perilous 
places when the attack is on. There is no life in the world so 
perilous as the Victorious Life. And there is no life so safe. 
Where the onslaughts of the Adversary are the most terrific, 
the grace of the Captain of our salvation is the most effectively 

Many have iterated and reiterated, that it is the most tempted 
life that we can live. Our Lord was tempted. The temptations 
we face come as never before: desperate, diabolical, hellish, 
subtle, refined, gross, spiritual, fleshly--the whole gamut of all 
the deception and the downfall that the world, the flesh, and 
the Devil can bring to the soul of the child of God. But Christ 
sees them all, and He is standing on sentry-guard in our lives 
against them; the Word of God has disclosed them all to us, 
and this "sword of the Spirit" is our sure weapon. 

If there should be failure through unbelief when failure comes 
and the enemy whispers, "You have sinned; and that proves 
you never believed the blessing you thought you had: you never 
had the Victorious Life." This is a lie of course. At Keswick 
they said, "If you should fail, shout VICTORY! Not with the 
idea of denying the reality of failure, but in recognition of the 
fact that Jesus has not failed. The enemy will also tell you that 
it will not have victory until we get apart with the Lord for a 
day, or an hour, or five minutes. But our Lord says that we can 
believe Him for instant cleansing and restoration. 
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to for-
give us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
1 John 1:9 Charles G Trumbull

Reader, have you been trying to put into practice the walking in
victory? How has it been with you? I have had so many oppor-
tunities of testing in the last few weeks. Press in and press on.
I know a life of victory is possible for each one of us.