Tuesday, July 17, 2012


Stan Blaylock tells about a clear glass dining table in a condo that their family used for holiday get-a-ways.  One of the favorite family pastimes was to begin assembling a picture puzzle and complete it during their stay.  The glass table became the favorite place to put the puzzle together.  Late one afternoon, after playing a round of golf, Stan and his father-in-law came in to find his wife lying on the floor under the table.  She was coaching her mother about where the next piece of the puzzle should go.  When asked why she was on the floor, she said it was easier to determine where a difficult piece of the puzzle should be placed from the back side, because it was not as confusing as looking at all of the colors and objects on the front side.

His life lesson can be ours today as well:  Life can be confusing on this side.  We can’t always see where the pieces of life’s puzzle fit in. Heartache, bitterness, loneliness, inferiority and depression… our ‘Secret Struggles’… just don’t seem to fit, but if we could see it from the other side [God’s view] it makes perfectly good sense to place that difficult piece in that exact place.  We can’t always see how Romans 8:28 can be true, until we take this perspective.  When we look at it from the other side, we will realize it has worked for our good… Trusting God in the sad seasons of life, when we have hidden hurts, will result in a stronger faith as we trace His hand through it all.

Pray with me… Loving Father, as we trace your hand in our yielded lives, we come to trust your heart for us.  We trust that the plans you have for us are plans to prosper us and not to harm us.   We trust that your Word is in our best interest always.  We trust that you are at work in us, by the Holy Spirit, to shape us into the likeness of Your Son and our Savior, Jesus.  In His name, amen. 

Pastor Ken

Monday, July 9, 2012


Paul Harvey once told of a woman who went to the local newspaper to report the death of her husband.  She took a 4 pp. glowing report about her husband to the obituary desk.  “I’m sorry,” the reporter said, “but you should know that the charge for this kind of copy is $.25 a word.”  She thought for a moment and simply wrote, “Henry Johnson dead.”  “I’m sorry,” the reporter said again, “there is a minimum copy requirement of seven words.”  She thought for a moment and counted out seven words… “Henry Johnson dead; 2008 Ford for sale.”  Obviously, this woman was not too heart-broken about her husband’s passing.  She seems just a little too practically minded does she not?

Now, I do not communicate this anecdote to, in any way, diminish the seriousness of heartbreak, or heartache.  It is very real.   And, my guess is that each one of us… at one time or another… has known this pain.  You could probably reflect on your life and easily identify an event or a time when you first experienced heartache.  I remember the day, as a 7 year old boy, when our family dog, Pokey, following me to the grocery store, ran out onto Route 150 and was hit and killed by a car that did not stop.  We buried Pokey in a cardboard box and had a tearful funeral in the back yard.  My little brother and I were devastated.  It felt like life was not going to be worth living.  I don’t remember ever really grieving before that day.   Regardless of the source of our heartache, here are a couple of verses that will touch and heal us from the inside out, in the deepest parts of who we are…

Psalm 34:18, “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”

Psalm 147:3, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”

Pray with me… Father, You are the God of all comfort.  You sent Jesus to heal the brokenhearted.  You Holy Spirit are called the comforter.  May we never forget your kindness and compassion when we are dealing with heartbreak or heartache.  Thank you for your promise that one day you will dry every tear from our eyes.  In the name of Jesus we pray, amen.

Pastor Ken

Tuesday, July 3, 2012


This week, on July 4th, we will celebrate our nation’s 236th birthday.  For some Americans, it can be just another day off.  They easily forget the reason for the celebration.  The real purpose of the holiday fades into the background behind the parades and the picnics.  Younger children might think that the Fourth is just an annual ‘fireworks day.’

But most adults know better.  On July 4th, 1776, fifty-six American leaders signed the Declaration of Independence separating the thirteen British colonies from England.  The fact that that was 236 years ago makes ours the world’s oldest surviving democracy.  At the same time, America is young when compared to Egypt, China, Japan, Rome and Greece.  Do you realize that our country was born just a little over 4 generations ago?  When Thomas Jefferson, the primary author of the Declaration, died, Abraham Lincoln was a young man of 17.  When Lincoln was assassinated, thirty-nine years later, Woodrow Wilson was a boy of 8.  When Wilson died in 1924, Ronald Reagan was 12.  Ronald Reagan just died in 2004!

Although we are young in years, yet America stands tall among the nations of the world.  We are the most prosperous nation on earth. The poorest among us are much better off than the average citizens of most nations of the world.  All of the complicated economic theories aside, the greatest cause of poverty is tyranny and corruption.  In other words, there is a direct link between our morality and our prosperity.

In the 1830’s French historian and political scientist Alexis de Tocqueville traveled to America.   He was curious to discover what set the young democracy apart from her European counterparts.  At the end of his trip, he wrote, “I have toured America, and I have seen most of what you have to offer.  I’ve seen the richness of the fields and the wealth of your mines.  I’ve seen your industrial might, the beauties of the rivers, the streams, the lakes, and the grandeur of the mountains.  I’ve noticed the abundance of the forests and the marvelous climate with which you are blessed.  In none of these things did I see the cause for the greatness of America.  It wasn’t until I went into your churches that I saw the reason for America’s greatness.  America is great because America is good; and as long as America is good, America will be great.  If it ever ceases to be good, it will cease to be great.

The Americans combine the notions of religion and liberty to intimately in their minds, that it is impossible to make them conceive of one without the other.”

Pray with me… Our Great God, we know Your Word declares that ‘righteousness exalts a nation.’  May we never forget that in our day-by-day personal moral choices, ethics and values we hold the most valuable component of freedom and prosperity.  We thank you that more than our efforts to be good, the imputed righteousness of Jesus, your Son and our Savior, is available to us by faith.  We want to spread the Good News of the Gospel throughout our land to produce faith in this and future generations.  If we do, we know our nation will continue to be truly great because it will be greatly blessed by You.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

Pastor Ken