Now, brethren, we wish to make known to you the grace of God which has been given in the churches of Macedonia, that in a great ordeal of affliction their abundance of joy and their deep poverty overflowed in the wealth of their liberality. For I testify that according to their ability, and beyond their ability, they gave of their own accord, begging us with much urging for the favor of participation in the support of the saints, and this, not as we had expected, but they first gave themselves to the Lord and to us by the will of God.
– 2 Corinthians 8:1-5
I have been studying this chapter of 2 Corinthians for over a month and I am blown away by the overflowing generosity of the Macedonians which Paul highlights.
My wife and I have been examining our own generosity and have asked ourselves if it come to this level. Sadly enough I don’t think so, but the Holy Spirit is convicting us and moving in us to desire to give more. These verses should cause us all to look at our generosity.
So why do we not give like the Macedonians? Could it be a lack of trusting God for our provision? Could we be holding back out of fear that what we do have will run out or dry up?
Continue reading “How Generous Are You?”
It’s been over a month since we returned from Kerala, India. I am still relishing in the love displayed by the Body of Christ over there. We savored the close bonds developed with Babu and the other pastors. I witnessed my wife flourish as she was showered with the love of Mercy, Bindhu and the rest of women. We saw the Holy Spirit move in such mighty ways. God’s design was exemplified and it was beautiful to witness! His glory is on display in the nations!
Scripture is clear: go and proclaim the Gospel. In God’s eyes this is done by men and women both who are strong not on their own merits, but through him who strengthens us – Jesus Christ.
Continue reading “For the Sake of His Glory”
If you have been watching any of our posts on Facebook or Instagram, you will notice something very obvious about me in any of the pictures I appear in.
I don’t exactly blend in with the people here.
Babu says often that Freddie could pass as Indian – when I ask about me, he laughs… really hard. I stand a full head taller than the women here and most of the men as well. I am gray haired and very – very – white skinned. There is no hiding me. I haven’t seen another white skinned person in almost a month.
Continue reading ““American Missionary””
Yesterday (Thursday) was another full day. Four more church visits and some time spent at one of the bible training centers. I have no idea how many kilometers we traveled – but it sure seemed like a lot. But here, travel takes a long time because of the bad roads, curvy, twisting streets and traffic.
When we got home last night I was wrecked. I was physically and emotionally drained. I awoke this morning and began thinking through all of the places we have been and all of the people we have met – and all of the things we have seen. It made me weep with the heaviness of it all. I know I have mentioned this before – but the need in this nation is indescribable. The more we travel and the more we see – the more it hits home.
Continue reading “Wrecked”
Romans 12 has been on my heart for a couple of months now, specifically verse 1. I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. I had the chance to share a message on this particular verse while we have been in India.
Do you come to Church to get something from God? Please do not misunderstand me. Church is a place of refuge, replenishment for our souls, a place of worshiping our Father in heaven. But are you just taking? Are you giving back, or serving in some capacity? I want you to think deeply about what I am asking. Do you come to God always trying to get something? And has it been a fruitful experience or are you frustrated with empty results?
Continue reading “A Living Sacrifice”
We are nearing the close of our 11th day here in India. Both Freddie and I had intentions of posting a lot more than we have, but we are kept pretty busy most days and when we are able to get time to write – we usually end up spending it reading or having conversations with Babu and learning as much as we can about his ministry and how things work here.
To say this has been a learning experience would be putting it mildly. Not only have we been blessed to learn more about GCM as a whole, we have learned about culture, language, and have gotten to know Babu and his family more. It doesn’t seem like we have been here for almost two weeks, yet it also seems like we have been here longer.
Continue reading “Update from India”
Have you ever read scripture or listened to a sermon and thought to yourself “Boy, could so and so use this”? Or “Wow I could totally use this to point out what so and so isn’t doing (or needs to do)!” If we are honest with each other – we would admit to doing it. I have.
And in the spirit of transparency, I did it recently. I started reading 2 Corinthians 8 and 9, and listening to sermons on it to use it against you. Yes – you. Even if we don’t know each other, that was my plan. I was going to use it for anyone I could reach to show you how you are lacking in giving. Nice, huh? But by God’s amazing grace and his loving discipline, he knows better what we need than we do. And this case was no different. So, I am not here to throw scripture at you to show you where you are lacking – because God showed me through his word where I still have a lot of weakness. So instead, I am going to share with you what I have learned about my own heart in this area. My prayer is that you find it edifying, yet convicting if you need it.
Continue reading “What Kind of Giver are You?”
About a month ago I went out to light the grill. I lifted the metal grate, fumbling with the child proof lighter as the gas built up in the grill. Just as I got the lighter to spark, a ball of fire flamed up singeing the hair on my arms along with my eyebrows, eyelashes, and portions of my fingers! It happened so fast and the initial shock made the pain minimal, not to mention the frustration at child proof lighters. Then the pain only to gradually grow. I tried to use water, oils like lavender, and ice to lessen the pain without much success. Thankfully, I was not seriously hurt and I healed quickly.
Continue reading “Hell is Real”
The Bible displays the reality of God’s faithfulness from Genesis to Revelation. It is a comforting thing to know our God displays his faithfulness to us. He gives us assurance that he will never change. So what is the meaning of faithfulness?
Continue reading “God’s Faithfulness”
Do we have correct and biblical understanding of the Holy Spirit? I often hear people speak and praying about the Holy Spirit and wonder if we fully understand.
Continue reading “The Holy Spirit”