Monday, January 28, 2013


The most famous story about lying in American history is the one about George Washington chopping down a cherry tree.  When his father asked him who did it, George supposedly said, “I cannot tell a lie; I did it with my little hatchet.”  That was in a biography written by Parson Weems in the nineteenth century – only one problem… He made up the whole story.  Incredibly, the most famous story about not lying in America was itself a lie!  And truthfulness is still in short supply!  Politicians spin promises, telemarketers scam the elderly, job seekers pad their resumes, repair shops inflate their bills, students steal essays from the Internet and spouses lie to each other about money and infidelity.

Have you heard that the IRS maintains what is informally called a ‘cheater’s account,’ to which people with guilty consciences can send money they know they owe?  There’s a story that the IRS received one letter that read, “My conscience is bothering me because of cheating on my taxes, so I’m sending $10,000.  If my conscience doesn’t clear up, I’ll send the rest of what I owe.”

Proverbs 12:22 NIV declares, “The Lord detests lying lips, but he delights in people who are truthful.”

And in our hearts, in our better moments, we are resolved to be completely truthful.  But, in this generation, perhaps more than any other, compromising the truth is almost expected.  Everybody seems to do it and it is considered no big deal.  Wrong!  Speaking of the saved in Revelation 14:5, John reveals, “No lie was found in their mouths; they are blameless.”

Pray with me… Dear Father and Lord, You are the God of all truth and we want to reflect your character from the inside out.  Make us like you… truth tellers in a world of deception.  In the name of Jesus, amen. 

Pastor Ken

Monday, January 21, 2013


Here is a practical challenge for the week ahead from I Peter 3:9, “Be a blessing [to others], because to this you were called, so that you may inherit a blessing [from God].”   The prophet Micah simplifies it even more in Micah 6:8. “What does the Lord require of you…. to love kindness.”  Could language be any clearer?  Here are ten kindnesses we should work on every day, and teach our children and grandchildren.  After all, if they do not learn kindness from us, where are they going to learn it?

1.  Go out of your way to speak to people.  [Pr 16:24]
2.  Try to remember their names – it shows that you value them.
3.  Smile; it increases your ‘face value.’
4.  Be friendly and helpful.  If you do, people will return it.  [Pr 18:24]
5.  Show genuine interest.  You can find something good in almost anybody, if you try.  [Php 4:8]
6.  Be generous with your praise and cautious with your criticism.
7.  Be slow to judge.  There are three sides to every story – your side, their side, and the right side.
8.  Instead of ‘using’ others, serve them. [Gal 5:13]
9.  Try to trust people – it builds lasting relationships.
10. Be humble.

Our Christian kindness does two things: 1] It makes people think more of our Father in Heaven.  Jesus said, “Live so that [people] will…. praise your Father.  [Mt 5:16] 2] Your own kindness determines the extent to which you will be blessed.  “Be a blessing…. so that you may inherit a blessing.”  [I Pt 3:9]

Pray with me…. Father, may we remember the law of the harvest this week.  What we sow, we will reap…. especially when it comes to kindness.  In the name of our gracious Lord Jesus, amen.

Pastor Ken

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


We are living in a generation of sobering contradictions.  On the one hand, we are seeing phenomenal growth in the global Christian community.   The reports of conversions to Christ in recent years sound a lot like the growth of the early church in the book of Acts.  On the other hand, there is reliable evidence that many of these positive spiritual life decisions are being undermined by statistics that reveal shallow commitment in too many professed believers.

Millions are coming to Christ in Russia, China and Africa.  The Great Awakening Tour claims that their worldwide crusades have resulted in nearly one million people making decisions since 2007.  One denomination reported 2.5 million decisions for Christ in 2008.  The international organization called Media Ministry recorded an astonishing 10 million decisions for Christ in 2009 alone!  One ministry, Christ for the Nations, has documented an incredible 45 million salvation decisions worldwide in just six years.  Exciting to say the least!

Yet, with all the excitement about the growth of the contemporary Church, we must not ignore some glaring inconsistencies. I learned from a 20/20 report just last week that 74% of men and 62% of women would have an affair if they were sure they would not be caught.  I just about fainted.  I know that this number has to include some folks who are professing Christians.   In October 2003 the Barna group found that 45% of those who profess to be born-again Christians believed that gambling is morally acceptable.   49% believed that ‘living with someone of the opposite sex without being married’ was morally okay.  One third of those professing to be born again thought it was okay to kill a baby while it is still in the womb.  [Article: “Morality Continues to Decay”]  In 2009, the Barna Group found that among individuals who describe themselves as Christian, close to half believe that Satan does not exist, one-third contend that Jesus sinned while He was on the earth, two-fifths say they do not have a responsibility to share the Christian faith with others, and one quarter dismiss the idea that the Bible is accurate in all of the principles it teaches. [Article: “Christianity Is No Longer America’s Default Faith”] I cannot begin to tell you the disastrous outcomes of such a flawed theology!

All this to say… The Bible speaks of ‘having a form of godliness, but denying the power of it.”  We are seeing this manifested in our generation… people who have made a decision for Christ, but have never really made Jesus the Lord of their lives.  To these Jesus would ask a rhetorical question… “Why do you call me Lord and do not do the things I say?”

Pray with me… “Father in heaven, we grieve over the disconnect between the belief and the behavior of some of your people.  We are to be holy as you are holy.  Our character should reflect Your character.  As Your children, we are to think, look and act like our Father.  Give us the will to be, from the inside out, the faithful image of our Lord.  In His name, amen.

Pastor Ken

Monday, January 7, 2013


Although France is not the most impressive place I have ever visited and the French are not the most impressive people I have ever met, I have to give honor where honor is due.  Two French observers of our nation back in the 1830’s have really impressed me with their keen insights into America.  First, look at this from Alexis de Tocqueville, “The Americans combine the notions of Christianity and of liberty so intimately in their minds that it is impossible to make them conceive the one without the other.  Upon my arrival in the United States, the religious aspect of the country was the first thing that struck my attention; and the longer I stayed there, the more did I perceive the great political consequences resulting from this state of things, to which I was unaccustomed.  In France I had almost always seen the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom pursuing courses diametrically opposed to each other; but in America I found that they were intimately united, and that they reigned in common over the same country.”

Now consider the assessment of Achille Murat“There is no country in which the people are so religious as in the United States… The great number of religious societies existing here is truly surprising: There are some of them for everything; for instance, societies to distribute the Bible; to distribute tracts; to encourage religious journals; to convert, civilize, educate… to take care of their widows and orphans; to preach, extend, purify, preserve, reform the faith; to build chapels, endow congregations, support seminaries… to establish Sunday schools… to prevent drunkenness, etc.”

These two outside observers have their finger on the pulse of our greatness as a nation in years past.  When these two men speak of ‘religion,’ let the record show they are talking about Christianity!  This coming weekend [1/12-13/13] at Crossroads we will be introduced/re-introduced to Jesus as “The Blesser of Nations.”  America, as she was in her greatness, is perhaps the best illustration of the irrefutable truth that expanding His Lordship in the society/culture is the greatest single advantage to a nation.  And conversely, the most damaging and dangerous action taken by any government of men is to persecute, compartmentalize or marginalize the Gospel of Christ. 

Pray with me… Father God, as Your people, give us a moment of truth, of sanity in these days… to humble ourselves and pray and seek your face and turn from our wicked ways to claim the promise of spiritual, moral, political and domestic healing in our land.   In the Name of the Great Physician… Jesus our Lord we pray, amen.

Pastor Ken

Thursday, January 3, 2013


Again this year, 2013, I will commence a through-the-Bible-in-a-year reading plan in addition to my weekly study in the Word of God to share messages with our church.  Some might say, “Come on, you have read the Bible already.  Why do you keep rereading it anyway?  Isn’t it a redundant exercise?”  Well, there is one very good reason to renew yourself in a commitment to read, study and meditate on scripture throughout the New Year.  It is found in Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is living and active.  Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”  The Bible is not like any other book on the planet.  Clearly, it is Divinely authored.  What other book has 40 authors writing over 1600 years in different epochs, different cultures, different circumstances, different locations… all supplementing and complementing one another… all testifying with one voice to God’s singular redemptive plan…  all together telling us that Someone is coming [Genesis-Malachi], Someone came [Matthew-John] and Someone is coming again [Acts-Revelation].  The Bible is not a book you read through once and then you have gotten it.  You need only to thoughtfully read it once to know it is not like any other book in the world.  It is alive and active.  It penetrates.  It judges the heart.

It is the Word of Truth/Life.  And personally, I can tell you I don’t have all the answers.  I need to know from the Ultimate Authority what is true and what is false.  I want to know how to think, how to speak, how to act and react.  Some people buy self-help books, and they can be helpful as a supplement, because all truth is God’s truth; but the Bible is special and foundational to personal growth.  It is the Sourcebook.  You will get spiritual conviction and practical instruction from the Bible.  Join me and see the difference.  Your attitudes and actions will change in 2013!  Life will be deeper and sweeter!

Pastor Ken