- 2020 (3)
- 2015 (1)
- August (1)
- 2014 (1)
- January (1)
- 2013 (5)
August 03, 2020
The Certainty of Uncertainty
Boast not thyself of tomorrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth. KJV
Don’t brag about tomorrow,
since you don’t know what the day will bring. NLT
Humans like and want certainty…
In predictions (weather especially!)
In a thousand other areas...
We believe that with all of our modern technology, we can predict practically anything with confidence that it will happen exactly as planned. Here is the truth as I learned it back home in the Sandhills, “There are only two things certain in life…taxes and death.” That saying simply meant don’t count on it! Whatever, the IT may be. Little has changed in my 65 years of life concerning this. In the year 2020 I find life is still just as uncertain as it was 55 years ago.
As far as the world goes, I will add one other certainty…UNCERTAINTY! Nothing is more certain than uncertainty. Another old saying is “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.”
I think anyone alive during the year 2020 can attest to how certain uncertainty is. No matter your news source, your political stance, or even your view on the virus, uncertainty is at the forefront. This uncertainty has led to a LOT of anxiety around the world.
For those who are Christ followers, I don’t know why they are surprised with the uncertainty. Scripture tells you quickly that NOTHING is certain in this world system. Why Believers are surprised really surprises me. Our scripture passage reminds us of this great truth.
So, what do do we do when uncertainty is certain? For the Believer, it is a matter of going back to the basic teaching of scripture…God is sovereign! Due to the constant debates over predestination and Calvinism, many have lost sight of the biblical truth that God is sovereign. This simply means His divine plan will not be aborted nor subverted. Uncertainty in our world system has no bearing on the certainty of His system, His plans, and His sovereignty.
“I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you. Job 42:2 NLT
I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee. Job 42:2 KJV
Therefore, dear Believer…lift up your head, your God is still CERTAINLY in charge!
July 20, 2020
Politicians understand that every single word they speak or write matters. That is why most have speech writers. They want to make sure of each word. That doesn’t necessarily mean that each word is meant to convey the truth, it simply means each word is crafted to either say a lot or to say a little.
I think most pastors understand that words matter. As they preach a sermon the words they use matter. When they write a devotion the words they use matter. Even in private conversations they know that their words matter. The words they use will either help or hurt what they are trying to say. It’s not unusual when writing an outline or devotion to agonize over what word(s) to use.
The Bible actually has something to say about words mattering...”But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.” Matthew 12:36
If politicians and preachers understand the importance of words and if the Bible speaks about being judged for our words, then shouldn’t WE ALL be mindful of our words? On a daily basis I’m astounded and saddened by words that I read on social media. They are often words of criticism and condemnation. Sometimes they are condescending. At times it’s simply the repeating of words with no idea of how true they are. I find folks are far more likely to do such things from a keyboard than they are in person. We feel safe in our “venting” and “ranting” while typing. We claim no responsibility for possibly sharing unverified stories about matters. We say it’s not our place to verify what we share and yet we scream at newspapers that do the same thing.
Friends, no matter your political, social, or medical take on current events...WORDS MATTER. And, one day we will be judged concerning the words we use. Join me in trying to better control our words. I’m still learning how to better control my self. It’s a daily struggle for me. How about you?
April 16, 2020
The Need For Hope
Across the world basic needs are the same...
During the current COVID-19 pandemic many people are fearful of losing these three items. Sadly, many will lose them. Some will lose shelter due to lack of ability to pay rent or mortgage payments. Food for some will be hard to find and even if they do they will struggle paying for it. Finances are a disaster for some. Savings are being exhausted, loan payments are piling up, retirement investments have plummeted.
I believe all people have these same basic needs...plus one more...HOPE! The question becomes where do we get our hope from during the current crisis? Many answers can possibly be given...
Mortgage payment deferral
I’ll admit that hope can be found in all of the above. I’ll admit that for many of us who are older we have been through times when we looked to all of the above for hope. But, trust me, most of this hope is temporary at best. So, where can lasting hope be found?
A personal relationship with Jesus Christ
“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.” Romans 15:13 KJV
“Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.” Psalms 31:24 KJV
“Let thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, according as we hope in thee.” Psalms 33:22 KJV
“For in thee, O Lord, do I hope: thou wilt hear, O Lord my God.” Psalms 38:15 KJV
The ultimate Hope is being celebrated this Sunday...the resurrection of Jesus Christ! Because He lives I can have hope!
August 31, 2015
They say confession is good for the soul. I have a confession…I am a procrastinator. I am one of those who will say, “Why do today what I can wait and do tomorrow.” This is nothing new for me. I have dealt with this my whole life. I cannot count the number of times I worked on school assignments (high school and college) the night before they were due…even though I had known for weeks that they were due. I have a list of items at home that are waiting for me to finish, but I don’t seem to get to them… there is always tomorrow. Procrastination has followed me throughout ministry as well. Even though I know a deadline is approaching for an event or even for a sermon, it seems that I have to wait until the deadline in order to get it done. Being a procrastinator drives me nuts, but I still do it.
Now, here is the big question for each of you, “How many of you deal with procrastination?” I am positive that many of you just raised your hand and said “ME!” What are the areas that you find yourself procrastinating in…housework, work deadlines, family needs, school work, church duties, or a thousand other possibilities? Do you get irritated with yourself over this? I imagine so. Being a procrastinator is tough.
I wish I had an answer for curing procrastination, but I do not. It seems that all I have tried has not worked. Maybe you have found the secret to fixing it. If so, please share it with the rest of us procrastinators. Just don’t wait until tomorrow to tell us!
Procrastination is kind of funny in a twisted sort of way, unless we are talking about spiritual issues. People procrastinate about salvation and about service. They think they can just wait until a later time to make a decision or to do what is required. Procrastination is not funny in these situations. It has an eternal consequence associated with it. If God is dealing with you about salvation or about service, don’t delay! Make that decision now…while you are able to do so. Today is the day to do what is required of you.
For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.
January 09, 2014
Bad news surrounds us like a dark, low hanging cloud. Daily, sometimes even hourly, we hear of another disaster, of another plauge, of another senseless act of violence, of another unimaginable act. There are days that we want to find a hiding place that will allow us to blot out all of the stories of wickedness. Often we will immerse ourselves in our work or our family as a means of escape. At times we turn to our hobbies and pleasures for a moment of relief. But, try as we might, we are unable to find such a place that is long lasting.
Good news has arrived! The good news is that we as Christians do indeed have a hiding place. It is a place that we can retreat to for comfort and encouragement. It is a place that is available at all hours and in all places. It is a place that is never so crowded that we are unable to get in. It is a place that has survived wars and rumors of wars. It is a place that has survived ruthless dictators and self seeking leaders. It is a place that makes living in a dark and dangerous world not only possible, but also profitable. Listen to what the Psalmist had to say...
Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance. Selah.
Thou art my hiding place and my shield: I hope in thy word.
May today you find the comfort that comes with "hiding within the Lord". I don't know what you may be facing, but I do know that whatever it is, the Lord invites you into His presence!
December 21, 2013
Boy, it has happened again! You know about it don’t you? It is in all of the papers, on TV and radio, and talked about by all of our neighbors. You can’t miss it…CHRISTMAS! It is hard to believe that we are almost there again. But, as you well know, December 25 is just around the corner.
Let me ask you a personal question. What does Christmas mean to YOU? Are you one of those who has watered it down to Happy Holidays? I can imagine that about now you are saying “NO, not me!” I am sure that you use the traditional “Merry Christmas” greeting. But, even when we use “Merry Christmas” we can still be saying “Happy Holidays” by our actions.
How much time do you/we spend in actually celebrating the true meaning of Christmas and how much time do we spend in having a “Happy Holiday”? Most of us spend more time worrying about gift buying, cooking, eating, visiting, and partying than we do about actually celebrating the birth of Christ. Don’t get me wrong, I like all of the above! Likewise, I am guilty of falling into this trap. I also fail to spend time celebrating the birth of Christ. Will you join with me this year in putting forth a greater effort in truly celebrating the REASON FOR THE SEASON!?
December 18, 2013
I have heard that confession is good for the soul. So…here it is…my confession…I am quickly becoming a Christmas Scrooge! There, I feel better now knowing that my secret is out in the open. I had kept this in for way too long. It was bound to come out sooner or later! You are probably asking yourself about now, “What has happened to poor ol’ Ken?” You may even be thinking to yourself, “But, I thought that Ken was a Christian!” Before you get too excited allow me to explain. I am NOT a Christmas Scrooge in the Christian sense. I have become a Scrooge in the cultural sense.
I know that I may not be a favorite of yours or anyone else’s when I make this next statement, but so be it. After all, I am confessing so that I will feel better! As for myself I have seen enough Santa’s, reindeer, elves, and sleighs to last me a lifetime! There…I told you that you would not like what I was going to say. But, the truth still remains. All I ask you to do is to ride around your neighborhood at night and look at the Christmas decorations. If your neighborhood is like all of the rest that I have been in, you will see one or two manger scenes and a bunch of Santa’s, reindeer, etc…
What is really troubling is the fact that not all of these decorations belong to lost people. A lot of these belong to Christians. Oh how I wish that we Christians would decorate in accordance with the true message of a Biblical Christmas instead of the cultural message of Christmas.
While I am confessing…if my children were once again small children, I would teach them differently about presents and Santa. I know that about now you are thinking that ol’ Ken has really flipped out! But, I would! We are now living in a society run amuck concerning Christmas. Times are different than when my children were small. Santa was not the big boy on the block that he is now. If my children were small again, I would teach them about Saint Nicholas and how that Santa is supposed to represent him. But, that would be it. They would not be looking for some magical, mystical figure who can fly, stop time, give unlimited presents to all children around the world, and live as an immortal.
Boy, do I feel better! How about you? Are you ready to sever your relationship with me? Or, just maybe you also feel the same way, but was afraid to say so because you did not want to be perceived as a “loon”?
From one cultural Christmas Scrooge to another…Merry CHRISTmas!