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.

Man struggling

Is It Okay to Wrestle with God?

April 26, 2019 | 0 Comments

As a young child, I was an expert in throwing temper tantrums.  My mom should have been sainted for having to handle me in those years.  I could be incredibly difficult. Yelling, screaming, physically destructive, and emotionally hurtful to those around me.   Looking back, I don’t think that I had an ability to properly express my feelings, so I just threw a tantrum.  Unlike our earthly parents, God knows exactly how we feel whether we express it or not. There are times in life when things aren’t going the way we think they should.  We know that God is there and working in our life. We may even be…

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sisters with heart

Love Makes the World Go ‘Round

April 12, 2019 | 0 Comments

During our trip to Bangladesh, we were privileged to attend a few of the youth meetings.  During one of these evenings, the participants were engaged in their Bible memory challenge.  Mark and I were both very impressed as several of the students stood and recited a portion of 1 Corinthians 13. If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if…

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travel station clock

Live Your Life Intentionally Inconveniently Available

March 29, 2019 | 0 Comments

When we were church planters, we got used to covering a lot of bases.  There just weren’t a lot of people to delegate various responsibilities to in those early days.  We started with boots on the ground, no starter congregation, and no permanent building. In fact, when we planned our home basement finish out, we designed it to use as a place to hold church until we outgrew it. We planned and taught Bible studies, wrote and preached sermons, organized and executed the flow of music and the service, looked for appropriate children’s material, hosted community outreach, cared for the needs of those in the church with pastoral counseling, etc.…

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Boy laughing

God Stories: Sharing Life with Others

March 15, 2019 | 0 Comments

Everyone enjoys stories.  We watch them on TV and in the movies, read them in books, and see them in the theater.  When families get together, it is common to tell stories of the past. Do you have some favorite family stories?   Our daughters and soon-to-be son (we skip the “in-law” portion) were all home for Christmas.  As we sat around the table eating great food, we got to share life. We shared stories of the past.  Stories that were familiar and some new ones. With every story, the kids get to know more about their parents, and hopefully a better view of how God has worked throughout the…

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Sunrise from 35000 feet

Planning International Travel by Prayer and Faith

March 7, 2019 | 0 Comments

In the summer of 2018 we felt like we were to go to Bangladesh to visit a missionary couple.  Mark looked at airlines and flights but didn’t really spend much time on it. In December 2018, we sensed that the time was getting close and we should talk with them about when would be good to visit and start planning.  In January 2019 it was determined that March would be the best time. So, we did what we thought God was telling us to do. We started telling people that we were going to Bangladesh in March. We blocked March 4th to 19th on our calendar to go, not having…

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Walk with the Light of the World

March 1, 2019 | 0 Comments

I was visiting with a friend when she shared with me that her bird went through a season of not singing.  She said she wasn’t certain the cause or if there were even multiple causes, but she had concluded that he needed to spend more time in the light each day.   We Need More Light When she shared her theory of “Birdie” needing more light each day, I was thinking, there’s a spiritual truth here.  We need the Light.  The Light gives us joy despite circumstances and a voice to dispel the darkness.  The joy of the Lord is our strength. (Nehemiah 8:10) Sunlight helps regulate our mood and…

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Yucca Plants

Spiritual Lessons from an Unwanted Plant

February 15, 2019 | 0 Comments

Here in the mountains of Colorado we have a plant that, in my opinion, is an annoyance at best.  It is called Yucca. There are many variety of yucca, and while I have a personal bias against them, they can be beneficial and pretty in the opinions of some, so please don’t get bent out of shape for my disparaging one of God’s creations.  But much like the sound of its name, I think Yucca are rather yucky. As I have attempted to eradicate this plant from my yard, I’ve learned a few things. Guess what? There are spiritual principles to be applied.  (Please note that these observations are based…

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How to Hear the Voice of God: 2 Lessons from a Day Dirt Biking

2 Lessons on Hearing God’s Voice

February 1, 2019 | 0 Comments

They say there are three voices in our heads – our own, God’s, and Satan’s. If you’re anything like me, you may struggle to differentiate between the three. Fortunately, God has been teaching me dependence and the sound of His voice, specifically through an injury these past 7 months. Struggling to Hear God’s Voice I don’t know about you, but I regularly struggle to know I can hear God’s voice. I especially struggle when I am feeling afraid of the implications of something. Afraid to ask someone a question. Afraid to pray over a need mentioned in passing. Afraid to resign from a toxic job. But it’s a kind of…

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Mark w Gabrielle stocking

Receive the Father’s Unconditional Love

January 18, 2019 | 0 Comments

We talk a lot about love in churches and families.  Unfortunately I think we often have distorted views of God’s love based on our experiences with human versions of love.  Today, I want to explore unconditional love. A Father’s Love It was over 25 years ago, yet I can still remember very clearly the first time I held our oldest daughter, Gabrielle.  We were young, foolish, naive, and certainly not ready to be parents. But the moment that I held that precious little baby, I was changed forever.  There aren’t adequate words in the English language to describe the connection that I felt. The depth of love that I knew…

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cacti mountains

Good Things Happen in the Desert

January 4, 2019 | 0 Comments

Recently someone told us that we were rubbing off on them.  This individual continued by saying, “I dreamed we were going to sell everything and move into a house in the desert.”  Initially, I discounted this statement as simply processing our visit the night before, but I have come to believe it carries much more weight.  That suspicion was validated when another friend offered the same insight into this particular piece of the story. The house in the desert is where Mark and I currently are; literally and figuratively.  This thought had already occurred to me before my friend’s validating comment, however what she said next was a new thought…

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