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.

Ribbon

Sticky Ribbon and the Fruit of the Spirit

September 25, 2020 |

I attended a shower for a couple soon-to-be-married.  Guests enjoyed the beauty of the wrapped gifts coming in.  We talked about current day events and reminisced about that time in our lives around the various tables.  Then, it was time to watch the couple open gifts.  Lovely, practical items for setting up a new home were opened one after another.  All of a sudden, the bride-to-be had a noticeable problem.  The beautiful, perhaps even the most beautiful of all, sparkly iridescent wide white ribbon used for the bow, was sticking to her layered tulle skirt.  The more she tried to unattach it, the more places it reattached.  While I couldn’t…

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Listening to God and Responding with Action

Listening to God and Responding in Action

September 11, 2020 |

Have you ever had a time when you were hearing every word that someone said but didn’t have a clue what they had said when they were finished?  You were hearing but not listening.  Sometimes, it is because we are thinking about a response to the first words they said.  We may be thinking about this, that, or the other thing and not engaged with the person that is right there in front of us.   Often, we do this when God is speaking.  We have a tendency to talk to the Lord, a lot.  Telling Him about our thoughts and what we would like Him to do in our life. …

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Hearing God

Journeying with God on the Trails of Life

August 28, 2020 |

We are all on a journey through life.  Some of us like to stick to the open paths with wide spaces and clear views.  I tend to enjoy wandering the narrow, twisty mountain trails that lead to high places.  Most of the time when I go hiking, my dog, Ginger, is my companion.  In our adventures, she has taught me a lot about journeying with God. Some of those lessons have been about learning how to “hear” God.  Rarely in life have I had the privilege of verbally hearing God speak instructions with clear sequencing of what to do and how to do it.  Most of the time I get…

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Kaleidoscope Viewers

Reflecting a Kaleidoscope of Joy and Love

August 7, 2020 |

As I was waiting for our luggage to arrive in the baggage claim area, I looked up and saw a man with a mustache and tattoos all over his neck and head.  I realized after looking a bit longer, that it was a face hood/gaiter mask.  It made me immediately think of how easy it is to look one way on the outside and completely different inside. In our ministry, we teach about markers.  Usually, we are referring to something in the spirit realm that makes you an easier target for the enemy.  We share that this concept is a twisting and perversion of the mark that God put on…

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Shine Bright in the Darkness of the World

Shine Bright in the Darkness of the World

July 24, 2020 |

From the patio outside the apartment we are staying in, I can see a lighthouse out on the far bluff.  I did some research and have found out that Hams Bluff Lighthouse has no longer been in operation since the mid 1990s.  The lighthouse was built by the Danish and first lit in 1915.  When the Danish West Indies were transferred to the United States in 1917, the responsibilities for the lighthouse were shifted to the United States Lighthouse Service and later to the US Coast Guard. Today, Hams Bluff Lighthouse sits on the northwest corner of St. Croix, USVI unused, rusting away.  A visit to the bluff allowed me…

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Parenting Truths You Can Use in Any Relationship

Parenting Truths You Can Use in Relationships

July 10, 2020 |

We recently celebrated Mother’s Day and Father’s Day so I’ve been thinking about parenting.  My kids are now adults living independent lives, and yet, I’m still working on figuring out how to parent well.  I’ve asked many people through the years how to handle various situations and be the best dad I can possibly be.  There’s been plenty of good, helpful advice, as well as, a significant number of suggestions that weren’t so good.   Through it all, I’ve learned a few truths.  These are written from a parenting perspective, however, I believe you can apply them to just about any relationship. Pray continually Pray for your kids.  Whether they’ve yet…

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Dog giving joy

Giddy Giving with God, the Gift of Generosity

June 19, 2020 |

Have you ever noticed that when we have something taken away that the importance of it increases?  Some of us enjoy being around people and socializing.  The past three months we’ve been living in a weird world of social distancing and the pleasure of hanging out with people has been greatly hindered.  Zoom calls are not the equivalent of being in the same room with someone.  When we miss something, it becomes more precious. One Sunday morning I was just giddy as I wrote our tithe check.  I definitely met the definition of a cheerful giver that day.  You see, we had several weeks in a row with no income,…

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lady with Bible

Identifying the Source of the Pain

June 5, 2020 |

A few weeks ago, I woke up with a pain in my back such that I could hardly move.  When I mustered up enough gumption to try, the pain was excruciating and brought me to tears.  I woke Mark because it was abundantly obvious that something was wrong, and I needed help. As I worked through all the possible questions and causes, I considered things like:  Is this muscular or skeletal?  Did I sleep in a position that created a kink?  Did I sit too long in one place for work? Did I pick up something incorrectly?  Is it chronic stress?   The most likely option seemed to be stress, but…

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Plans with God

Walking One Detour At A Time With God

May 22, 2020 |

I’m a planner.  I like to know what the plan is, and if there isn’t one, then I can come up with a plan.  For as long as I can remember, I always had a plan.  Some of those plans were short-term, like what I was going to do that day.  I also had long-term plans.  What I was going to study in college (engineering), what my career would look like (designing cars), how many kids I would have (four – two boys and two girls).   While I started as an engineering major in college, I ended up with a BS in Accounting and an MS in Entrepreneurial Accounting.  I…

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Sabbath Rest

Learning How to Rest in the Sabbath

May 1, 2020 |

In early February, a few years ago, the Lord impressed upon myself and my accountability partner that we were to learn about and start practicing a weekly Sabbath.  At the time, I was running a CPA firm and he was an attorney with his own law firm.  The timing of this urging is significant.  Being a CPA in February meant that tax season had started and our busiest month of the year was right around the corner.   I had my usual monologue with the Lord about how this wasn’t a good time.  How about we look at this at the end of April or in May?   You just don’t…

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