Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Shepastor: "Teachable Moments..."

He changes times and seasons;
he removes kings and sets up kings;
he gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to those who have understanding;
22 he reveals deep and hidden things;
he knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with him.

Daniel 2: 21-22, ESV

Our eldest son has a wonderful ability to raise great questions and comments for dialogue. We frequently banter back and forth about music, super heroes, culture and politics. Our conversations frequently lead us down a path towards “teachable moments.” Together, we are learning much.

The other day our youngest child (my twelve year old daughter) jumped into our conversation on politics. While driving down the road, listening to CNN on the radio, we began a conversation about our recent presidential election. We each expressed our opinions, frustrations and disappointments over outcomes.

My mind turned back to previous elections when it was easier for me to say to my children, “Even if you don’t agree with the politics of the leader, we should always respect the office the leader holds.” I must admit, this time has been difficult. However, I shared once more with my young people the importance of respecting the office.

Feeling somewhat hypocritical (On more than one occasion I have said things that, let’s say, were not complimentary about our current POTUS!), I was reminded of the importance of respecting the office, the “chair,” the “seat.” Leaders come and go. However, the order and civility of our society rests upon our ability to separate the individual serving from the “power and authority invested” in the position.

This is all the more reason why we should take our right and privilege to vote seriously. In addition to experience, we should examine the “content of their character,” and ask ourselves the question, “Can we look our children in the eye and tell them that they should respect and admire the individual holding the position, as well as the position itself.”

America, we have a lot of soul searching to do…

Post a comment or send me an email at

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Shepastor: "Lord, Don't Let My Ankles Turn!!!"

In Psalm 18: 35-36, NIV
David declared,

35 You have given me the shield of your salvation,
and your right hand has supported me;
your help[a] has made me great.
36 You gave me a wide place for my steps under me,
and my feet did not slip.

An older version of the NIV Bible says verse 36 like this…

You broaden the path beneath me so that my ankles do not turn

I love David’s analogy that the Lord “broadened the path beneath his feet so that his ankles did not turn.”
This image reminds me of the days when I wore high heels. I was always trying to be careful where and how I walked because I did not want to turn my ankle, trip and fall! Although some are still wearing those skinny heals, more and more shoe manufacturers are creating “chunky heels” in stylish ways. It’s too easy to trip, fall and turn your ankle on those skinny heals!

In the same way, the Lord “broadened the path” beneath David’s feet…in other words the Lord opened up more room for David to “walk.”

With all of his military might, with all of his greatness as a king, with all of his riches and prosperity, David was clear about one thing…It was GOD that made him great. It was God that knew him even before he was shaped in the womb…it was God that caused the prophet Samuel to look beyond his outer appearance and see that he was the one to be anointed as King of Israel…it was God that gave him the courage to stand up against the giant Goliath and kill him with a sling shot and some stones. It was God that caused him to triumph over Saul and all of his enemies.

David knew God intimately
. David feared God and repented when confronted with his sin. David loved the Lord above all else. David understood that God and only God could have taken a little Shepard boy and make him great. Even when David got off track and sinned, God saw that he had a humble and repentant heart.

When we are clear that all of our help comes from the Lord, when we embrace God’s help and submit to God’s will for our lives, our perspective is “broadened” such that our proverbial “ankles don’t turn.” Many trip and fall because they try to walk the walk of faith in their own strength.

Life is filled with pit falls, hidden crevices, things that can “trip us up.” But with the help of the Lord, we can “run through troops and leap over walls” (Psalm 18: 29, KJV). David experienced many painful and dark days. His perspective, however, caused him to live victoriously and triumph over every situation and circumstance. God “broadened the path beneath his feet” through cultivating his perspective.

When afraid, David turned to the Lord for reassurance. When abandoned by so-called friends, ridiculed and discouraged, David encouraged himself in the Lord. When David walked in darkness, he declared the Lord to be his light and salvation. David’s path was broadened beneath his feet because of his perspective. David trusted God as his helper and as one who is well able to carry him through!

The Lord can lift you out of a fearful, discouraged, cramped, shackled, bound mentality and enlarge your awareness of God’s authority and power in your life. God can open up your mind and broaden your outlook and your perspective so that you don’t “turn your proverbial ankle” and fall! The Lord wants to prepare a place for you to walk freely, unencumbered, tall and strong. God, however, will not override your will. You must surrender to God’s leading and determine to trust.

The Lord Himself will support you, will lead you, will hold your hand and if necessary will carry you. It is God who stoops down to make us great – great in love, great in healing, great in righteous living, great in terms of our walk with Him.

Ask the Lord today to broaden the path beneath your feet so that your ankles don’t turn!

Post a comment or send me an email at

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Shepastor: "God is our refuge..."

Psalm 46New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

Psalm 46
God’s Defense of His City and People
To the leader. Of the Korahites. According to Alamoth. A Song.

1 God is our refuge and strength,
a very present[a] help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
3 though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble with its tumult.Selah
4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
5 God is in the midst of the city;[b] it shall not be moved;
God will help it when the morning dawns.
6 The nations are in an uproar, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
7 The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.[c]Selah
8 Come, behold the works of the Lord;
see what desolations he has brought on the earth.
9 He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
he breaks the bow, and shatters the spear;
he burns the shields with fire.
10 “Be still, and know that I am God!
I am exalted among the nations,
I am exalted in the earth.”
11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.[d]Selah

May all of those impacted by the devastation from natural disasters find strength, hope and a mind to "run on and see what the end is gonna be," through trusting in God...our refuge and strength.

May we do all that we can by whatever means possible to come to their aid.

Post a comment or send me an email at

Until next Wednesday,
in Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Shepastor: “Will the Real Christians Please Stand Up???”

8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? Micah 6:8, KJV

Throughout history, defining moments occur…moments when rhetoric, “loud hosannas,” and “straddling the fence” won’t fly. There are times when individuals are compelled to show forth their “real.” We are facing one of those moments now…

Today our Nation’s President made a decision to end the DACA program. “DACA” stands for, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Congress has been given six months to address the issue of undocumented immigrants that came to the U.S. as children – an issue that has evaded a resolution for decades.

In the article, “What is DACA? A look at rescinded immigrant programme,” AlJazeera News provides an overview of how approximately 800,000 undocumented immigrants ended up in the predicament of potential deportation if the United States Congress does not legislate comprehensive immigration laws in six months.

For those who do not understand what’s going on, here are some “fast facts…”

- DACA was created by then-president Barack Obama in 2012 after intense pressure from advocates who wanted protections for the young immigrants who were mostly raised in the US but lacked legal status.

- The programme protects them from deportation - granting them a two-year reprieve that can be extended and by issuing them a work permit and social security number.

- DACA recipients must have no criminal record, proof they were brought to the US before age 16, and be under 31 when the programme was launched but at least 15-years old when applying.

- The application cost is nearly $500 and permits must be renewed every two years. The application and renewal process take several weeks.

- DACA does not give beneficiaries legal US residency. Recipients get temporary reprieves from deportation and permission to temporarily work.

- Frustration grew during the Obama administration over repeated failures to pass the "Dream Act", which would have provided a path to legal US citizenship for the young immigrants who ended up becoming DACA beneficiaries and became known as "Dreamers."

- The last major attempt to pass the legislation was in 2011.

- Immigrant activists staged protests and participated in civil disobedience in an effort to push Obama to act after Congress did not pass legislation. DACA is different than the Dream Act because it does not provide a pathway to legal residency or citizenship. (Information obtained from, )

Some feel that “the Law is the Law” and there is a clear cut answer to the problem – simply deport them and send them back to where they came from. Some believe that these young people are “taking their jobs,” committing crimes, bringing down our country and are receiving benefits that they don’t deserve.

The fact of the matter is that these young people are “American” in every way. They know no other country. They are not on “welfare.” They are not criminals. They willingly came out of the shadows to provide their documentation to the U.S. Government. They are students, they are law abiding citizens, they are employees, they are tax payers, they are service men and women.

According to Micah 6:8, at this defining moment in history, the people of God are being called upon to “Do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.” Imagine being dragged out of your home, off of your job, out of your school, “round up” with others like you, thrown on an airplane and dropped off in a country that you know little or nothing about, don’t speak their language, and have no means of providing for yourself – no job, no home, no money, no food, no family or friends, no resources, no hope!

That’s what mass deportation looks like for 800,000 human beings. May we have a “Selah” moment… “pause and think about that…
Will the “real” Christians please stand up???

Post a comment or send me an email at

Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris