Blogs for Christian Living

Read some devotional thoughts from prior church planters & lifelong pastors. Mark & Dallas share what they learn daily in their journey walking with God.

Be inspired to live in the fullness of purity that God has set as the standard for His children. Be encouraged to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit and the implications of living in relationship with God.

Securely Ministering Through My Insecurities

Securely Ministering Through My Insecurities

July 30, 2021 |

Most people see me as very confident.  While I am fairly good at portraying this quality, I struggle with many insecurities.  One that I have struggled with for decades relates to my qualification to be a minister.   Over the years, I’ve been told numerous times that I shouldn’t be a pastor or vocational minister.  Reasons given include, but are not limited to: my personality (I’m not outgoing enough), the fact I haven’t gone to seminary or Bible college, and I’m not a charismatic speaker.  While all of these things are accurate about me in their factual statement, I dispute that they are valid reasons for disqualifying a person from being…

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carafe pouring

Are You Pouring From a Broken Carafe?

July 16, 2021 |

It wasn’t a great way to start the work week.  I went to retrieve the coffee carafe from the dishwasher only to find the glass had broken.  The placement of the break wouldn’t have negatively impacted the ability of the carafe to hold the volume of desired liquid.  The concern, however, was the potential negative effect of the application of additional heat.  Pouring out of the coffee pot without causing harm, due to misdirected and unrestrained leakage was also a slight gamble. It had been a busy weekend with additional travel, so not having coffee wasn’t even a consideration.  I pulled out my percolator that I have as a backup…

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The Incredible Power of Music in Our Lives

The Incredible Power of Music in Our Lives

June 18, 2021 |

In sixth grade, I was in the band room, after jazz band practice, on what was otherwise a normal Thursday.  Kids were talking about popular songs of the day, and I felt weird that I didn’t really know them.  Wanting to fit in, I was thinking that I needed to start listening to the radio stations that they listened to and learn the music. Right there, as if a person had walked up to me, I felt the Lord ask a very clear question.  “Are you willing to not listen to secular music for the rest of your life?”  There wasn’t a command in the question.  It was as if…

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Black and white praise team

We Bring the Sacrifice of Praise, Service & Worship

June 4, 2021 |

We held our third night of collective community worship events last Sunday evening.  As the musicians prepared and rehearsed, we looked a little at what worship is and what it is not.  I shared a devotional with them which included an excerpt from How To Worship A King by Zach Neese on pp. 13-14.  The author shares a poignant lesson from God regarding worship and discusses how he was forever changed because of this encounter. In all candor, this worship event was the most difficult to plan and execute to date.  While we have met challenges such as losing a musician or last minute venue changes in prior events, this…

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Stung by the Plague of Busyness

Stung by the Plague of Busyness

May 21, 2021 |

Busyness is a common trait that a lot of us share. Many times over the years I’ve been accused of being a “workaholic”.  It started when I was a teenager and continued through much of my adult life.  While I generally denied the accusations, they were not without merit.   My senior year in high school, I worked three jobs in addition to maintaining straight A’s in school.  While completing my degrees in accounting (BS and MS), I worked full-time, had a family, and went to school in the evenings.  As a CPA, it was common for me to clock 2400 to 2600 hours per year with tax season being 60…

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Child Planting in Garden

Inadvertently Planting Rows of Seeds of Encouragement or Destruction

April 30, 2021 |

Accused of Being a Seed Planter Recently, I received a message from a client,  “You seed planter.”  In all candor, I frequently have clients who have worked with me for a while tell me something like, “I was going to do such and such.  Then I heard you in my head, so I did something different.”   I often tease them that it’s a little scary that they hear my voice at the point of making an important decision.  Truthfully, I recognize it for the awesome responsibility and privilege that it is. We all plant seeds.  Some of them are good.  Some of them are not.  Seeds can germinate and…

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A Glimpse of a Father and Son and What Relationship Could Be

A Glimpse of a Father and Son and What Relationship Could Be

April 16, 2021 |

My father and I had a rather distant connection for the past 30 or so years.  In many ways we were estranged, though it seems strange to call it that.  Mostly, we just didn’t talk or connect.   I last saw him in September of 2010 when my oldest daughter was looking at colleges, and we were in the area he lived.  We met at a restaurant with my older brother and his family, along with dad and his wife.  A fairly large group, so not much was discussed other than the events of the day.   Why didn’t we talk?  Well, I’m not really certain the real reason.  He left my…

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Using our Brain in a World of Information and Technology

Using our Brains in a World of Information and Technology

April 2, 2021 |

There is some truth to the saying, “use it or lose it.”  Mostly, I’ve thought of this in terms of skills and muscles, but it also applies to our brains.  The brain is much like our muscles, the more we use it, the stronger and more capable it becomes. I was recently asked by someone that hasn’t lived without the internet, if I thought it was overall good or a detriment to our lives.  In the moment, I provided some observations of things that I feel the internet has provided and things that we are missing because of the prevalence of technology in our lives.  With additional time to process…

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Our Opinions Provide Comfort in the Absence of God's Perspective

Our Opinions Provide Comfort in the Absence of God’s Perspective

March 19, 2021 |

We all have opinions on things.  I have lots of opinions.  Some of them are probably worth something and others are mere thoughts without much merit.  Yet, we live the majority of our life based on our opinions of how things should or should not be done.  What is right and wrong.  How we think things should be. When we were in the process of starting the ministry back in 2015, I had things mapped out and lots of ideas of how it was going to work.  I also had a few strong opinions.  We would have an RV that allowed us to travel to the clients.  The building at…

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rest

I Rest My Case in the Peace and Trust of Faith

March 5, 2021 |

Over the past few weeks, Mark and I have been working diligently to write the Rest and Leave policy for Blue Fire Legacy.  Several places in this document reference the need to rest in the way God prescribed.  As we consider the necessity to rest, there are additional facets that come to mind as rest is not an independent concept. Interestingly, while physical rest can be achieved by slowing our pace and observing healthy boundaries in regards to activities and commitments, true inner rest cannot be achieved in the absence of faith and trust.  Peace is also a necessary component of inner rest, and without faith and trust, peace is…

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