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Friday, June 13, 2014

35 Years Ago I Married My High School Sweetheart

It was 35 years ago…6/16/79 that I married my high school sweetheart Jayne Sherman and made her Jayne Rath.  It was a dream come true.  There was one problem…I didn’t know it at the time…but I was sick with a relationship addiction.  I needed to be desired, wanted, loved and adored…by more than just my wife...and I pursued unhealthy relationships.  We had 3 beautiful children…but over the next 29 years, off and on, I would live a secret life of unfaithfulness, lies and deceit.  After being caught a 3rd time…the marriage ended.  Just as we were taking on two young beautiful children to raise as our own.  That…and other consequences sent me in a tailspin.  Only to be rescued, delivered, healed and blessed by a GREAT BIG God!  That was the best thing that ever happened in my life!  You can read more of that story by scrolling to the bottom and clicking on older posts...then scroll down to the bottom starting with the post titled "Introduction."  You will read how God took me to where He needed me to be so that He could show me who He is and who He created me to be.  Then perform miracle after miracle in my life. 
Still the 2nd best thing that ever happened in my life was marrying my high school sweetheart.  I will be eternally sorry for the poor choices I made that caused so much pain, first and foremost to her, and then the rest of our family and friends.  If I could turn back the hands of time...knowing what I know and Who I know now...I would! 
My message to my beautiful ex-wife Jayne…I miss you very much...remembering our wedding day 35 years ago and the huge blessing you were in my life!  Thank you for hanging in, hoping and praying as long as you did.  All that you were hoping and praying for...God finally answered.  I'm so sorry it was too late for us!  May God continue to richly bless you in all you do!  I love you and always will! 

Senior Ball 1975
Wedding Day 6-16-1979

25th Anniversary 6-16-2004

Saturday, May 12, 2012


It has been nearly a year since I posted on my blog.  The Lord finally got through to me about a couple of topics to share.  This first one is called Expectations...because of an experience I am having.
Why do we have expectations?  It only sets us up for possible letdown or at best, agreement.  When I think about expectations, I realize that I have put expectations in other people’s minds.  We all do!  When we say we will do something, or when we share how awesome something is…like a movie, a book, a relationship.  When we share the opposite…how awful a movie, a book, a relationship or something else might be, we put those expectations into somebody’s thought process.  Our shared preferences do make a difference to people.
Webster’s dictionary defines “Expectation” as
: the act or state of expecting : anticipation <in expectation of what would happen>

a: something expected <not up to expectations> <expectations for an economic recovery> b: basis for expecting : assurance <they have every expectation of success> c: prospects of inheritance —usually used in plural

This has all come into focus as I arrived here in Mendocino, California.  There was a great offer on Groupon for a two night stay with an ocean view room at this hotel…which I won’t name.  I have never been to Mendocino and thought how awesome it would be to be on the ocean along the Mendocino coast…so I purchased the deal.  Since I purchased the deal I have been “anticipating” the wonderful experience.  You can probably see where this is going.  The four and a half hour drive was beautiful at times and gridlock at other times…but I was still looking forward to the ocean view room and spending a couple of days experiencing God’s beautiful creation of water and beaches, rocks and waves. 
You might even say I had faith in the Groupon offer that it would be everything it said it would be. 
Webster’s dictionary defines “Faith” as:
a: allegiance to duty or a person : loyalty b (1): fidelity to one's promises (2): sincerity of intentions

a (1): belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2): belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion b (1): firm belief in something for which there is no proof (2): complete trust

Although faith in God was not a part of this “faith”…I strongly believed and had allegiance to the duty of Groupon and their offer.
But before I go any further I need to say I do NOT blame Groupon in any way for my experience.  It was my choice and I purchased the deal.

When I arrived at this hotel…I was surprised that it’s not even on the ocean side of the street.  It’s old and not extremely well kept.  The “ocean view” from my 2nd floor deck is the fact that over the overgrown shrubs and trees and across the street…yes I can see the ocean.  It is hardly what I would call ocean view.  HOWEVER…I do have a view of the ocean in the distance from my room. 
It has been so foggy and cool today that I can’t see the ocean at all.  It is within walking distance of “downtown” if you can call it that.  When I arrived here at 6pm on May 11th I wanted to get something to eat.  Most “downtown” shops were closed including restaurants.  Those that were open were extremely expensive.  I ended up paying almost $20 for a small pizza and a drink.
On a positive note I did not have any expectations about the bed in which I would be sleeping.  It was very very comfortable and I slept extremely well.

After enjoying the morning continental breakfast, (another positive experience) I went downtown for a brief time only to find many shops don’t open until noon. 
So now here I am back in my room asking why we have expectations.  Well I think we enjoy the anticipation and look forward to a positive experience.  If we were to have no expectations, we would never be let down by people, places or things.  Have you ever purchased a gadget or electronic device and anticipated how much joy it would bring you?  That has to be in our human nature.  We are also prone to disappointment by those expectations. 

Let’s bring God into this monologue J.  Have you ever wondered if you disappoint God or feel like you have disappointed God?  Here is where Good News comes in.  I’m here to tell you God has NO EXPECTATIONS of you!  He doesn’t.  Why?  He already knows what you will do or say.  Disappointment comes when expectations go unmet.  He loves you, adores you and wants to bless you BIG!  Since God has NO expectations of you, you don’t and won’t ever disappoint Him. He desires relationship with you and that pleases Him!  But be set free in knowing that you can’t disappoint God.  Also be encouraged that He is right there cheering you on in your life and desires for you to come to Him with questions and dilemmas. 

I’m not suggesting that we should never have expectations.  Trust can be built when expectations we have about someone or something are met.  I think I am saying that we must look carefully at who and what we put our expectations in.  Ask God about your expectation.  He will answer you.  This experience in Mendocino has been awesome.  Not for the beauty of the area or the ocean view room.  But for the learning and growing that God has allowed me to have in this short period of time.  For the rest of this short weekend…I have no expectations!  I like that. 
God, I am looking forward to the journey that You are going to take us on! 

Blessings to you my friends.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Flesh A Spiritual Dimmer Switch

Throughout Scripture Jesus and the Holy Spirit are referred to as the Light.  And when we accept Christ into our life, we receive the Holy Spirit as a Helper in our daily life, among other things.  The Light invades the darkness in our spirit.  And the only way we can be what God calls us to be is to depend on the Holy Spirit and walk moment by moment with Him.  We are illuminated by God’s Word and we allow Him to call the shots in our life.  As it says in Psalm 119, “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.”  We can see clearly where we are to go when we are guided by the Word.
At the same time, we still have our flesh or old self that we have lived with for as long as we have been alive.  It’s human nature, if you will, that has had control of us since birth. 
As much as we would like to say we have no problem living and walking by the Spirit, it is not the easiest thing to do…consistently.
In fact I see the Holy Spirit as a BRIGHT LIGHT that wants to SHINE 100 percent in our life all the time!  But our “flesh/old self” acts as a dimmer switch on the Holy Spirit.  The more we allow the flesh to have control…the dimmer the Holy Spirit can be in our life. 
Will we ever be rid of our flesh?  Not while we are living in this earth suit called the human body.  So to some degree, there will always be a dimmer on the Holy Spirit in our lives.
BUT…the more we can stay in the Word, keep in fellowship by prayer, and surround ourselves with other Brothers and Sisters in Christ…the stronger the Holy Spirit can shine.  Then we can share who our God is and what He is doing in our lives with others that don’t know Him.  We can be that light…a bright light!
I’m not saying this as a task that has to be done and checked off our list.  That would be performance based and that’s not the way God works. 
As the Spirit leads our life, He will put the desire in our heart to read His Word, to keep in constant touch with Him through prayer, and to hang out with others who can support us and pray for us.  We need to be a RAT for Jesus…Real, Authentic, Transparent.
The less the flesh has control…the higher the dimmer switch for God can be turned up and the stronger and brighter our Light can shine for Jesus.   
So my encouragement with this post is for you to open your heart to the Holy Spirit.  Let the Light of Jesus take control of you in every part of your life.  Remember you have NO secrets from God.  He knows everything anyway…you might as well be open and honest with Him now.  That’s when He can work miracles in your life…and be the Light that shines through you! 
May the Holy Spirit shine bright in your life…and your flesh be very dim!  

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Even If I Was The Only One

(The following entry gets a little graphic, so just be aware of that.)
Did you know that even if you were the only person on earth that Jesus would have come to set you free by dying on the cross?  Have you heard that before?  Do you believe that?  I do!  I know how much trouble God went through to pursue me to the very bottom before He could get my attention.  And if He loves me that much…I know, without a doubt, that if I was the only man on the face of the earth Jesus would have come down to rescue me.  Rescue me from eternal separation from God, so that we could have fellowship anytime and anywhere.  Then I get to thinking…what does that mean? 
Well, that means that since there would be no other humans on earth, the Father would find a way to send Jesus here.  And since there would be no other humans on earth, I would be His disciple…His follower.  He would teach me amazing things.  We would fellowship together, eat and drink together.  There would be laughter, tears, wonderment and awe.  I would try to walk on water as He calls me to Himself on the sea.  I would also be the betrayer.  With nobody else on the face of the earth my part in the story would include condemning Jesus with my words.  It would be with my sword and authority that I would arrest Jesus.  Then my mind would reel as I would proclaim… “I find no guilt in this man.”  The very next words out of my mouth would be yelling, “Crucify Him!  Crucify Him!”  Finally, I would sentence Him to die.  It would be me who flogged Jesus, beating Him, ripping His flesh, blood oozing out of his body as I mock Him, laugh and press a crown of thorns onto the top of His head digging into His skull.  I would lead Him up the Via De La Rosa to Golgotha where my own hands would nail His hands and His feet to the cross.  Each time the hammer hit the nail and He would wince in pain and cry out, I would wonder what am I doing and why?!  Tears would stream down my face…but I would continue.  Then by whatever power I had…I would stand the cross and as it fell in place, His body would be jolted and again He would wince in suffering.  Then I would step back and look up.  Finding my sword nearby, I would pierce His side and blood and water would flow out.  Tears would flow more freely down my face.  I now know what I’m doing, but I can’t stop it!  But then Jesus…hanging on that cross…looks up into the heavens and says, “Father forgive George, for he thinks he knows…but he knows not what he’s doing.”  The day grows dark… there’s an earthquake and it is so severe that I’m not able to stand.  Jesus again cries out to the Father… “It is finished!”  And then silence.  Total quiet.  It is deafening.  It is the most incredible stillness I’ve ever heard.  I want to feel complete guilt, but I heard the words that Jesus spoke…He asked the Father to forgive me.  And if God could forgive me…who am I to not forgive myself?  Am I better than God?  May it NEVER be!   
I believe that’s what God would have done if I was the only man on the face of the earth.  That’s what He would have done if you were the only man or woman on the planet.  He loves me and you that much.  When it comes right down to it…we did go through everything I’ve just shared.  Because it was our sin, past, present and future sin, that put Him on that cross!  But, thankfully, the story doesn’t end there.

After Jesus has breathed His last breath, I realize I can’t just leave Him there.  I must take His body and put it in a tomb.  So, I take it down, wrap His body in a burial cloth and bury His body in the tomb meant for me.  Then I roll a giant stone in front of it.
So now what?  I wait.  I can’t believe what I have just been through.  My emotions are shot.  My fear comes and goes.  Would the Father really forgive me?  Jesus made the request after I had hung Him on a cross. But how could He forgive something that evil?  I need to go check the tomb.  I don’t know why…I just do.  It has been three days now.  But wait…what’s this?  The stone has been rolled away!  By who?  I’m the only man on the face of the earth!  This can’t be!  There’s something bright inside the tomb…it’s an Angel of the Lord…He’s telling me that Jesus is alive!  He rose just like He had talked about.  My heart leaps and I can’t wait to see Him.  There He is…in a glorified body!  I fall at His feet!  He says He loves me!  Even after all I’ve done…He loves me, I AM forgiven and I can have fellowship with Him forever!  Praise God!
Christ has risen…He has risen indeed! 
Happy Easter! 2011

Sunday, March 20, 2011


What?!  What does sacrificial worship mean and is it something God would have me do really?
It has been a little over a month since I have posted anything on this blog and I have had some ideas, but today something happened and I felt a need to share this. 

If you have read my entire blog, you know that I had to hit bottom and in the process I lost my wife, destroyed my family, lost my home, my stuff and ministries along with broken relationships.  You also know that God continues to work in my life and has Blessed me beyond my comprehension.  Much of what I lost and what truly meant the most to me…remains fractured.  Other parts of the loss have been restored!

I say all that to introduce what I want to say in this post about “Sacrificial Worship.”  Today was another blessing of a day in the Lord and I went to eat at one of my favorite buffet restaurants.  I took a book that I’m reading to pass the time in between “courses.”  While I was dining, a family that I have known for several years sat in the booth behind me and we started chatting a little.  It was good to see them and we were able to catch up a little, as much as you can in a restaurant full of people and trying to eat at the same time.  I asked the husband… “so where are you guys worshiping these days?”  The words out of his mouth spoke volumes.  It was a message in itself.  He told me where his wife was worshiping, and that he didn’t like it there so he wasn’t going anywhere.  But he said he may be going back to a church they had attended a few years ago.  WOW!  How sad my heart was hearing that.  And it’s all that needed to be said on that subject, for now. 

Here is what I would like to say to him and to any man who is not worshiping because they don’t enjoy the church where their spouse is going.  First, I would say…You are called to be the SPIRITUAL LEADER in your home.  That means leading your family in spiritual matters!  Even church attendance.  Here is where the sacrificial worship comes in.  I used to go to church to see what I could get out of it.  If I didn’t like the music, the pastor, the message, the building...whatever…I wouldn’t be interested in making sure I was there every Sunday.  It was after hitting bottom and seeing God in a new way that I now know it’s not about what I can get from the service.  LISTEN UP HERE…It’s what I can GIVE TO GOD during the worship service that is important.  I still may not agree with the music choices, the entire message from the pastor or like the building!  But I serve an AWESOME God and He wants all of me even as I worship together with other believers on Sunday morning.  He can AND WILL speak to you as you open your heart to Him! 

So here is my message to men who stay home from church because it’s not a place they like.  As husbands, you are called to be the Spiritual Leader of your home.  If your wife desires to worship at a certain Bible believing Jesus preaching church, GO WITH HER.  Serve her in that way, sacrifice yourself and worship the one and true God.  Not because it’s where you want to be, but because that’s where your wife wants to be right now.  How can you be on the same page with her spiritually if she is getting fed and giving herself to the Lord and you are staying home doing whatever?  Let me answer that.  You can’t!  When the two of you can be on the same page spiritually…your marriage can grow and be more fruitful than you ever thought possible.  Putting Christ in the center of who you are and the center of your marriage can be the answer to a volume of issues in your life. 

You may be saying…yea George what do you know, you’re divorced.  And I say… you are right!  And that’s one reason why I’m divorced!  First of all I didn’t have Christ at the center of my life every moment.  Secondly, Christ definitely wasn’t the center of my marriage.  To be blunt and honest…I was the center of my marriage.  It was all about me along with other issues in my life.  Wow what a horrible place to be.  I still praise God for my ex-wife!  I mean she stayed with me almost 30 years!  She is an incredible woman of God and I miss her every single day!  I do know this…if God was to ever bless me again with a re-marriage, the relationship would be a 180 degree difference than what it was.

That’s why I have shared these blogs.  Men…I don’t want poor choices to cost you everything.  It’s not worth it.  Love your God and love your wife and family!  Relationships are the most important part of life!  I can assure you that!  God Bless you!  Thank you for reading this and I pray that maybe one family might be able to be strengthened by what God does through these words.  And I pray for my friend that he can hear from God about serving his wife and family spiritually and sacrificially! 

Saturday, February 12, 2011


A little over a month ago I titled a post I, Me, Mine about the Beatles song of the same name.  I guess I could have called this one I, Me, Mine 2…because I want to share with you what God has laid on my heart about loving others…putting others before ourselves and praying for others.
What does Jesus tell us about the two greatest commandments?
Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord.  And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.  No other commandment is greater than these.” Mark 12: 29-31.
I could expand on this passage for quite a while, but that’s not what I want to do here.  Jesus tells us to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.  And then love our neighbor or fellow man/woman as ourselves.  NO other commandment is greater. 
My friend Ed is in county jail serving time for a huge mistake he made.  That mistake cost another man his life and altered the lives of many others.  That mistake also brought him to an incredible and deep relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.  I too am living the consequences of mistakes I have made in the past.  Those mistakes caused the breakup of my family and other friendships/relationships as well as some ministries.  But because of those mistakes, God brought me to a place to where I had nowhere else to look but to Him and He has come through time after time in the past almost three years.  Along with the deliverance of the past, came blessings I could never think of, as well as a deep constant relationship with Jesus.  So when I visited my friend Ed in jail recently…we discussed why we were so on fire about what God has done in our lives.  The story that came up was from Luke 7 when Jesus was having dinner at a Pharisee’s home and the immoral woman came in…
Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Look at this woman kneeling here. When I entered your home, you didn’t offer me water to wash the dust from my feet, but she has washed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair.  You didn’t greet me with a kiss, but from the time I first came in, she has not stopped kissing my feet.  You neglected the courtesy of olive oil to anoint my head, but she has anointed my feet with rare perfume.
“I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.”  Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.” Luke 7: 44-48
So both Ed and I know how much we have been forgiven and love much.  We have acquired the fire so to speak.  But really, if anybody truly knew how much they had been forgiven…I mean REALLY understood it…they too would have the fire.  Perhaps that’s a challenge for you. 

So here’s a quick question…when was the last time you spent more time praying for others than for yourself?  Now don’t get me wrong here I’m not saying we shouldn’t pray for ourselves.  Even in the Lord’s Prayer Jesus uses the words… “Give us this day our daily bread…”  So we are to pray for our needs.  And in the prayer of Jabez he asks that he would be blessed and his territory enlarged:
He was the one who prayed to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and expand my territory! Please be with me in all that I do, and keep me from all trouble and pain!” And God granted him his request.   1st Chronicles 4:10
And how many times in the Psalms did David ask for blessings, protection and destruction of enemies?  Plenty!
The Lord wants to hear our heart and that includes our desires, needs, concerns, hurts and praises!
However, to look at the most important commandment from Jesus, I think we need to look at how we love God and how we love others.  If we make God our first and foremost priority in life by just inviting Him in EVERYTHING we do and say, then our heart will burst with the desire to love and serve and pray for others.  I know this is easier said than done.  And please understand I’m not saying to DO anything in our own power…because we can’t do it!  It can only be by the power of the Holy Spirit.  But to have that fire…will put others on our minds and in our heart to pray for their needs.  Whether it be healing, deliverance, salvation or simply for God to reveal Himself to them. 
I think it’s important to look beyond ourselves and into the lives of our families and others to see what God can do in their lives and how He can do it.  And what a blessing we will get out of it.  We may or may not see the results of our prayers, but that won’t be up to us. 
So here’s a challenge…for a week how about praying for those you know who have great needs.  Maybe even those you don’t know…but know there are needs.  Whether they be relational, financial, spiritual or physical…pray that God would intervene in their lives.  See what He does.  If there’s nothing visible that goes on, just know that God never sleeps and He’s always working.  Have the confidence and knowledge that God will answer those prayers…someday…in His way.
May you acquire the fire as you come to know how much, dear brother or sister, that you have been forgiven! 

Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Desk Fountain of Rock and Water

In May of 2010 I was blessed with the opportunity to go back to South Dakota and speak at a Blessing Service for Paige Harbert.  Paige is a part of the family in Spearfish who welcomed me into their home as my journey of discovering who I am in Christ and my healing, deliverance and growth kicked off. She was graduating High School and asked if I could be there.  WOW!  What an honor and privilege.  As I thought about what I could tell a graduate just starting to look ahead at life after high school, the Lord gave me something that is appropriate, I think, for all of us.  He reminded me about two particular elements that were used throughout scripture.  These elements were used to honor God and to refresh.  Here is what I shared...picking up with the information about the elements.
These two elements are significant throughout the bible yet they are so simple and you can find them anywhere. 
The first is rock or stone or slate.  Throughout scripture, they are used in a number of ways including as monuments.
In Genesis 31, Jacob and his family set up a monument of stones and ate a covenant meal with Laban.  In verse 48 it says, Then Laban declared, “This pile of stones will stand as a witness to remind us of the covenant we have made today.”  In Deuteronomy 27 Moses told the Israelites that when they cross the Jordan River to set up some large stones and coat them with plaster.  Verse 3 says: Write this whole body of instruction on them when you cross the river to enter the land the Lord your God is giving you—a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you.  When you cross the Jordan, set up these stones at Mount Ebal and coat them with plaster, as I am commanding you today.
In the 4th chapter of Joshua, 12 stones were carried from the middle of Jordan River representing the 12 tribes of Israel as they crossed on dry land…to construct a memorial.
There were many times in the Old Testament that rocks or stones were used to build monuments for something significant God had done.
Then in 2 Samuel 22:2 David sings of his Rock: “The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.
Of course David slew Goliath with a stone from his slingshot.  David uses the Psalms in 18, 19, 28 and others to call God his rock.  These are just a few of the examples that the Old Testament uses a rock or stone as significant. 
In the New Testament Jesus talks about obedience to His Word as building a house on solid rock.  Matthew 16 Jesus renames Simon to Peter which means Rock and Jesus said upon this rock I will build my church.  Even though Jesus knew Peter’s coming failures, He still knew what Peter was really made of.
Other things that stand out in the scriptures regarding rocks or stones…
Christ is called the cornerstone that was rejected by builders…
Jesus was buried in a tomb which was carved out of rock and the rock covering the tomb was rolled away.  Rock is significant in the bible.
When the Israelites were wandering and were thirsty, God told Moses to strike a rock with his staff…and that brings me to the second element I want to mention in this blessing…water.

Moses tapped the rock and water gushed from the rock providing refreshment for the wandering Israelites.
When God wanted to cleanse the earth of all the corruption of humanity, he used water to flood the entire planet.
When we are baptized we are immersed into water signifying Christ’s death, burial and resurrection. 
Jesus says he offers living water in John chapter seven talking to the Jewish leaders…“Anyone who is thirsty may come to me!  Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’”* (When he said “living water,” he was speaking of the Spirit, who would be given to everyone believing in him. But the Spirit had not yet been given,* because Jesus had not yet entered into his glory.) 
And He said when we drink from this water we will never thirst again. 

To me, the scriptures are rich with information about rock or stone and water…and really both elements come down to God’s provisions for His people.  He has provided through rock and rock is used to remember those provisions.  He has provided through water and water is necessary to this day to sustain life.  Through the mentioning of rock and water, may you remember and be blessed by God’s provisions in your life Paige.  May you allow Him to sustain you and may you never thirst again.

As a symbolic monument to those provisions in the past as well as His promises for your future…may this fountain represent the elements of rock and water.  (I presented her with a little desk fountain where water ran onto rock)

Proverbs 21:1 says
“The king’s heart is like a stream of water directed by the Lord;
He guides it wherever He pleases.”
How is the King of King's guiding your heart?  Are you letting him be Master of all?
Maybe you need a reminder of Who God is!  And who you are in Him.  Maybe picking up a little desk fountain or a bigger fountain to put in a place that you can see everyday will remind you of His provisions for you in the past and your Hope in Him to Bless you with the provisions in the future.  
Rock and remember...

Monday, January 3, 2011


A few weeks ago I was awakened in the very early morning with a song going through my head.  It was a very obscure song that I had not heard in a number of years.  Why in the world would this song be going through my head at this hour on this day?  No clue other than to share the message with others.

This particular song was written by George Harrison and is on the Beatles album ‘Let It Be.’  The title is “I Me Mine.” 
The lyrics are very simple, yet signify our culture so well.  They say…

“All through the day, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine.
All through the night, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine.
Now they’re frightened of leaving it
Everyone’s weaving it  
Coming on strong all the time
All through the day, I me mine.”

The chorus is just those three words…

“I-I-me-me-mine, I-I-me-me-mine…"

The next verse spoke to me because of where I have been.  It says…

“All I can hear, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine.
Even those tears, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine.
No-one’s frightened of playing it
Everyone’s saying it
Flowing more freely than wine.
All through the day, I me mine…”

When Harrison sings, “Even those tears, I me mine, I me mine, I me mine…” they speak to me because in the past I was seldom thinking of others than myself.  So when I cried, which wasn’t often, I selfishly cried for me and not what someone else may be feeling. 

What I get from the rest of the verse is no-one was frightened of playing the victim or playing the part of being hurt.  Everyone is claiming to be hurt…and blaming others for the way they feel and those words flow more freely than wine.

That is so much our culture…that everything revolves around I, me, mine.  Not taking responsibility for our own actions, but putting the blame elsewhere.   

Praise God that I have experienced the changes He is making in me that allow me to focus not so much on me and my pain or circumstance, but the pains of others.  

To me there are several great things about tears…they are cleansing…refreshing…relieving.  And David says to God in Psalm 56:8
You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book.

I pray that we as a society can get off the I Me Mine and get closer to You Them They.  May 2011 be a year focused on others for all of us. 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Torn Down To Build Up

I have heard the question a lot lately…so how is life today?  There are so many aspects to life sometimes I ask…well, what part?  But most of the time, I’ll just share about what God has done in the last two and a half years this way…

Jesus has the parable of building on a solid foundation in Luke chapter 6 starting with verse 46:

“So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock.  When the floodwaters rise and break against the house, it stands firm because it is well built.  But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.”
The second part of that parable is what initially happened with me back in July of 2008…everything I had tried to build in my own flesh for almost 30 years came tumbling down in a heap of ruins when the storm of truth hit.  There was destruction of my family, relationships with friends, my career and ministries. For the remainder of 2008, God showed me where the rubble was, the cause of the rubble and I just had to start slowly clearing it away with God’s help. 

Through 2009, the clearing of the rubble continued.  He helped clean everything out and I started to see an emptiness where God could start to move in and work.  Then there was leveling, grating and smoothing the “lot.”  Finally digging deep to be able to start and lay the foundation on “The Solid Rock.” 

In 2010, the foundation of life has started to be built.  I’m talking about my internal life as well as my external life.  Internally I have been soaking up His Word and reading books from awesome authors leading me to a deeper relationship with Christ.  Externally with the blessing of working in a national radio ministry and having ministries returned at church, I am clearer on His purpose for my life.  This blog is even a part of that!  If I can encourage even one man, woman or couple to take seriously following Christ in all areas of life, it will be to the Glory of God!  I will be doing what I feel He has given me as my mission for the remaining days that I have on earth!

As I look ahead to 2011, I see the beginning of a new chapter and a new building going up.  But each “floor” will be built on the solid foundation of Christ and as He blesses, another “floor” will go up or another “chapter” will be written.  To God be the Glory!  For the things He has done and is doing!     

The short answer is, "I am a Blessed man!"

Friday, November 26, 2010


The Wedding Sand Ceremony is a more and more common way for a bride and groom to recognize that the two are becoming one flesh as Scripture says.  Often times it replaces the Unity Candle Ceremony at weddings.  The bride and groom each choose a color of sand that is appropriate for them.  That sand is kept in two individual glass containers.  At a certain time in the ceremony, many times during their vows, the bride and groom each pour a portion of their sand into a larger glass vessel.  More vows and more sand is poured until they have emptied their individual glass containers.  Uniquely the sand combines to make designs that illustrate both characters in one vessel representing their marriage relationship. 

Well during my stay in South Dakota I had some awesome biblical counseling.  During the three and a half weeks I had the most incredible experience of self discovery and realization of who I am in Christ and who He is in me, that I chose to have a sand ceremony between me and God.  As my counselor, Pat Karn, poured white sand in the vessel for God, I poured cobalt blue sand in the vessel and proclaimed that in Christ I am a new creature.  I’m loved, pursued, cherished and adored.  Everything I was searching for prior to my Spiritual Awakening was found through God’s Word and in His promises to me and forgiveness of my past, present and future sins!  The design that the two colors of sand made is a beautiful reminder of Jesus and me living in this earthly tent together.  We are told that we are the Bride of Christ. As Jesus did many symbolic things on this earth, my Sand Ceremony was symbolic of Jesus living in me and how I abide in Him.  The glass vessel I have on my bookshelf is an awesome reminder every day as I look at it, who I am in Christ and who He is in me!  I love the words of John the Baptist when he said…in John 3:30 talking about Jesus:
He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less. 

May it be so!

*If you would like more information about the Sand Ceremony you can log on to

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

12. Epilogue

Yea, I regret big time that it took so long for the spiritual awakening in my life to take place.  Satan allowed the choices I made to destroy our family and many of my friendships.  I can’t say “the devil made me do it,” because that’s not factual.  He used my past to influence me and I made the choices in the flesh that hurt a lot of people.  One of the things my biblical counselor at Christian Life Ministries in South Dakota, Pat Karn, mentioned to me was to be aware that since I was now walking in the freedom of Christ, some people would still be angry with me and want me to continue to suffer.  

It is interesting to see the different ways many of the people affected by my choices have responded.  Some have come along side me and encouraged me during my self discovery, healing and growing process.  They have prayed for me and with me, given me meals, places to stay and monetary gifts as well as time.  Others continue to pray and remain friends, but somewhat at arms length.  Still others have completely written me out of their lives.  

As I have gone through the grieving, healing, and growth process, I know how I want to approach others who might go through the same thing.  I want to be there to lift them up, praying for them and being a spiritual encouragement for them in their awakening!

I still believe Satan would suffer a defeat if our family were to someday be restored.  Anytime God puts back together something Satan has torn apart, it becomes stronger and more effective for the Kingdom of Heaven.  As of this writing, that does not look likely.  But we serve a huge God and nothing is impossible for Him. 

If you have seen yourself in any of what you have read, please realize God’s promises for you when you choose Him!  It’s never too late to turn toward Christ and want to be more like Him.  Sometimes we make wrong choices and blessings are taken away, but God is always good!
Jeremiah 29: 11-14  For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. I will be found by you,” says the Lord. “I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes. I will gather you out of the nations where I sent you and will bring you home again to your own land.”    

May God richly bless you!   

Saturday, November 20, 2010

11. Alpha And Omega

Revelation 22: 12-13  “Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds.  I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.”

Three times in Revelation, Jesus tells us He is the Alpha and Omega which is the beginning and the end, or first and last.  Jesus was with God and was God in the beginning.  Before all creation, Jesus was!  The Omega is the end.  Since eternity has no end, Jesus will be with us all the way!

When my ex-wife and I got married back in 1979 there was a Christian song by a group called Candle.  It was called, “Alpha And Omega.”  I cannot find the song now for the life of me, but the lyrics were very simple.  We even added a verse specific to the wedding.  As I look back on my life without the spiritual awakening, there’s no way I could live what the song calls for.  These are the lyrics:

He is Alpha and Omega
The beginning and the end.
He’s behind me, He’s before me,
He’s ever my friend.
Wherever I go, whatever I do,
He is my source and my goal.

He is Alpha and Omega,
The beginning and the end.
He’s behind me, He’s before me,
He’s ever my friend.
Wherever I go, whatever I do,
Jesus is my source and my goal.

(verse 3 added for the wedding)
He is Alpha and Omega,
The beginning and the end.
He’s behind us, He’s before us,
He’s ever our friend.
Wherever we go, whatever we do,
Jesus is our source and our goal.

It’s a very simple song, yet with profound meaning.  Again this all comes after my spiritual awakening.  No doubt that Jesus is the Alpha and Omega.  He is the beginning and the end. He says so!

He’s behind me.  I look at this in a couple of different ways.  It is Satan who tries to stand behind us, whispering in our ear and pushing us and prodding us into things that he wants us to do that are sin.  Yet Jesus is behind us fighting our battle and stepping in between Satan and us, slaying the devil’s ideas.  Jesus is behind me to encourage my walk forward.  The other way to look at that statement, “He’s behind me,” is that since He has been here since the beginning, He of course has been right there with me in the past.  Even the ugly things that I have done and evil choices I have made.  He has been there with me and in me as we have discussed. 

He’s before me.  He goes ahead of me and prepares the way.  He knows my day.  He knows what is coming, what situations I will confront, what conflict might arise.  He knows it ALL.  So He goes before me to prepare and pave the way.  Then it’s my responsibility to listen and be obedient to His call on my life. 

He’s ever my friend.  Well, you can’t deny that statement.  In fact we will never have a better friend in our lives.  There’s even an old Hymn that says “What a friend we have in Jesus.”  It’s amazing that He calls us His friend.  Another contemporary Christian song proclaims, “I am a friend of God!”  The creator of all things is MY friend and YOUR friend!  Just look what Jesus says in John 15 verse 14-17:
You are my friends if you do what I command.  I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.  You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name.  This is my command: Love each other.

Again I just have to allow my heart to commune with Him daily and hang out with Him. 

Wherever I go, whatever I do, Jesus is my source and my goal.  That is an all encompassing statement, wherever I go and whatever I do.  That’s pretty much everywhere and everything.  1st Corinthians 10:31 says:
So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. 

And the song says He, or Jesus is first my source.  That means He is the source of my strength, He is the source of my power, He allows me to be who He created me to be.  Secondly, He is my goal!  That is thee goal, to be more like Jesus in every possible way.  In relationships, in attitude, in thought, in action, in caring, in loving and in sharing.  The more we are like Jesus here on earth, the better prepared we will be when we meet Him face to face.

That simple song with such a profound message was a simple wedding song when we got married.  Today as I look at it, with a spiritual awakening, it is a call to live life each day in a more Christ like way. 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

9. Happy Endings?

Psalm 128:  How joyful are those who fear the Lord, all who follow His ways!  You will enjoy the fruit of your labor.  How joyful and prosperous you will be!  Your wife will be like a fruitful grapevine, flourishing within your home.  Your children will be like vigorous young olive trees as they sit around your table.  That is the Lord’s blessing for those who fear Him.  May the Lord continually bless you from Zion.  May you see Jerusalem prosper as long as you liveMay you live to enjoy your grandchildren.  May Israel have peace!

I have thought a lot about what a happy ending to my story would look like.  As a human being, whenever there’s loss, a happy ending would include restoration and reconciliation.  So naturally after a divorce and separation from my family, a happy ending, to me, would have re-marriage to my ex-wife and the family restored. 

My failures also let down my Father in heaven.  But as God has taken a hold of me and awakened my spirit, He has delivered me, changed me and drawn me to Him in every part of my life, which constitutes a happy ending for sure!

We have all read books and seen movies that have a typical happy ending.  About four months after free falling to the bottom, at the request of several friends, I saw the movie “Fireproof.”  The movie deals with self centeredness, selfishness and addiction by a married man to a point that his marriage is near divorce.  After being confronted and challenged with a 40 day “Love Dare,” the man completely changes his life.  Through prayer and actions, his marriage is restored.  The end of the movie shows him at his office, which is a firehouse, and his wife shows up to surprise him and the scene becomes one of the happiest endings you can imagine.  I admit several times during the film tears flowed down my cheeks.

Yes a happy ending would include reconciliation of the people I love most in my life.  But a joyful life includes really knowing that I am different on the inside because of what Jesus has done and not because of who I am or what I’ve done.  And there is Peace in that! 

Being able to share my story with others about how God has continually shown Himself to me seems to encourage them as much as it reminds me that He is always there. 

One area that God has restored in ways I could never have dreamed of is my work in ministry.  Previous to bottoming out, we had a small group that met at our home, and I was on the drama team and sound team at church.  Those ministries had been removed because of my sin.  After two years of healing and growth service in the church has been restored!  PLUS I work for a national radio ministry that reaches millions of people a week.  Never did I think it would be possible to be a part of God’s Kingdom work to that degree! That is incredible evidence that He restores!

So let’s look at the happy ending of Psalm 128.  It closes with the words “May Israel have peace!”  Two words in this four word sentence have major significance.  Those words are “Israel” and “peace.”  In the Old Testament the people of Israel were God’s chosen people.  He freed them from the slavery in Egypt and led them to the Promised Land.  Their deliverance though didn’t come without a lot of detours, wandering and disobedience.  But God’s chosen people finally did make it to the Promised Land. 

After Jesus came, taught and gave His life for all men, women and children, we became Israel.  All who have accepted Christ as Lord are now God’s people.  So may all of God’s people have peace.

Once again peace is a word that doesn’t really mean free from conflict.  When you look up the synonyms of peace you find…calm, quiet, stillness, tranquility, silence, harmony and serenity.  Peace is an inner feeling.  I like the word content.  Paul says in Philippians 4:11-13
 “Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have.  I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything.  I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.  For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” 

He’s talking about how the gifts of the Philippians have helped him, but he has learned to be content or at peace with whatever he has or doesn’t have.
Just before talking about the gifts, Paul encourages the Philippians to keep their eyes and minds on Christ to receive His peace when he says in verses 8 and 9 of chapter 4,
“And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing.  Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable.  Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.  Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing.  Then the God of peace will be with you.” 

I can’t think of a better way to be at peace with or content with life’s circumstances than to keep my thoughts on what is true, and honorable and right and pure and lovely and admirable. 

Remember life cannot be about performance!  Especially not the Christian life.  If you base it on performance, you will be extremely disappointed and probably angry at God most of the time.  It goes back to the condition of the heart.  How is your relationship with your Heavenly Father?  Does Jesus lead your life everyday?  I’m not talking about Sunday morning and, or Wednesday night.  I’m talking about every single day!  At home, at work, at school, on the road…everywhere!  It seems as though most of us, when we get into the driver’s seat of a car, become a different creature.  Why is that?  Because we want control.  It’s all about “me.”  When somebody won’t speed up, they’re preventing “me” from getting where I need to be sooner.  If they pull in front of me, they are hindering “me.”  Behind the wheel of a car, it’s always all about me.  How about saying a prayer before we get going.  Start the engine and say, “Lord, you know the kind of person I am.  You know the frustration I have when I’m driving and others aren’t driving up to my expectations.  Help me let go and let You take us on this trip.  Keep us safe and let me have no expectations of other drivers.  Jesus You take my heart and my attitude.”  I think that could make a huge difference in our character even in the everyday life of driving to work, or wherever we may go. 

It’s my belief that we cannot be a successful man or woman of God unless we give Him our entire life!  Offer up our physical, emotional, spiritual life along with our thought life.  He must have all of me and all of you to be able to bless us the way He wants to!

And He does want to bless His people in a big way!  One of the hardest things about the written word is you can’t hear the tone of voice I am using.  I am saying these things with so much love, but I’m saying these things very emphatically…please don’t wait until you have to hit bottom, to look up and see how much God wants all of you and wants to bless all of you.

Notice the last thing in the psalm.  “May Israel have peace!”  It’s an exclamation point.  That wasn’t put there on accident or per chance.  He wants you to have that peace that only He can give!  The psalmist couldn’t say it with any more emotion than that.

Friday, November 12, 2010

8. Grandparental Love

Psalm 128:  How joyful are those who fear the Lord, all who follow His ways!  You will enjoy the fruit of your labor.  How joyful and prosperous you will be!  Your wife will be like a fruitful grapevine, flourishing within your home.  Your children will be like vigorous young olive trees as they sit around your table.  That is the Lord’s blessing for those who fear Him.  May the Lord continually bless you from Zion.  May you see Jerusalem prosper as long as you live.  May you live to enjoy your grandchildren.  May Israel have peace!

Grandchildren are a product of your child and the child of another family.  I became a grandfather at 50 years of age when my youngest daughter and her husband gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.  This was before my tumble to the bottom.  I met my granddaughter when she was just five weeks old.  I have a picture of me holding her and bending over to kiss her cheek.  What joy it brings me today to look at that photograph and see that tiny, fragile life in my arms, and to know the complete unconditional love I have for that baby.  

I want to stretch your imagination a bit.  There’s no doubt that I love all three of my children unconditionally and wish for them every bit of God’s blessings.  Their mother and I had the responsibility of bringing all three of them up in our home.  My ex-wife was, and is, an incredible mother and I give her all kinds of credit for the creative ways she helped our children in their growth.  But once they are adults, you have to pretty much let them spread their wings and fly.  Though, you will never stop being a parent.  Biologically, they will always be our kids!  They will always be welcome in our lives.  But at the time they venture out on their own, watching them from afar is probably the best way to go.  Jesus Christ is God’s only Son, sent to earth to teach and bring others to Himself.  Then He died on the cross to save us from our sins, and was resurrected so that we might spend eternity with Him.  Jesus is our redeemer, our mediator to God.  Here’s where I want to stretch your imagination. Try to look at God the Father as a Grandfather.  And Jesus as our leader or Father figure.  Today I can hold my adult children, tell them I love them and that I will always be there for them.  And that’s the truth.  Our Heavenly Father tells us the same thing.  But when I get to hold my granddaughter, she has to be given to me from my daughter.  Then I can hold her, love on her and tell her Papa will always be there for her.  Again, that’s the complete truth.  But then I give her back to my daughter.

I can see the picture where I am holding my fragile, beautiful granddaughter.  As I lean down to kiss her, I can see God leaning down to hold me and kiss me with all His affection, but then give me back to Jesus to be led by Him to become more like Him.  In the same way, my daughter and her husband have the responsibility to take my granddaughter and lead her in life.  And I pray that they will raise her to be like Christ. 
So let’s re-cap this imagination stretching exercise.  I’m a grandfather, and my grandkids call me Papa…God, my Heavenly Father is my Papa.  I am definitely not equating myself to God, just a parallel for this exercise.  Jesus is God’s only Son loved by God with all His heart.  Separate for a moment that Jesus is God.  My daughter is loved by me with all my heart.  I am Jesus’ child to be led, taught, nurtured and loved by Him.  He shows me to the Heavenly Father, or Papa, and Papa loves on me and holds me.  Then He gives me back to Jesus so that Christ can continue His work in me.  As I am shown my granddaughter, I get to love on her and hold her.  Then I give her back to her parents so that they can continue their work in her life. 

That’s the closest I can come to explaining grandparental love.  So far I have two grandchildren.  Both of them granddaughters from my youngest daughter and I cherish the time I get to spend with them.  As the years pass by I look forward to spending more time with them and any other grandchildren I am blessed with.  That’s how I can enjoy them.  Love on them, give them special treatment, pray for them and let them know Papa will always be there for them.  Then give them back to their parents so they can continue the work that God has called them to in the lives of their children.