Friday, December 4, 2009

Mark 6:37 YOU DO IT!

In the Gospels Jesus' story is told but there are also sub themes weaved into the narrative. One of those is the training of the twelve, the Apostles. Jesus is teaching them to have faith. In Mark 6 five thousand people are hungry and the disciples ask Jesus to let them go and buy food. Jesus' response is "You give them something to eat." If you look back in Mark 6:13 that had driven out demons and anointed many people with oil to make them well. They were well aware of the power of God. In Mark 6:37 however, their response to Jesus directive "You give them something to eat" was, "That would take eight months wages." Seems they "forgot" about God's ability in them. How often we forget it is about God and not us.

"You do it" Jesus says, have faith in the Father. Jesus was not telling them THEY could do it. He was teaching them about trust in the One who can.

So we face all kinds of situations which seem insurmountable, impossible...and Jesus says "You give them something to it." And he is asking us to trust God. God can do it. Foree

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


I drive by Planned Parenthood often and see the Christians out their praying month after month - I have done it once - so I do not give it much thought UNTIL YESTERDAY. The DIRECTOR of Planned Parenthood sees a video of an abortion and begins to cry at her desk. She leaves the building drives to COALITION FOR LIFE and seeks refuge saying she should have never been involved in abortions...Amazing, all those people doing all that praying all those years and maybe getting discouraged...and then BANG...the heart of a person is touched and one more finds God in a hateful will be great to see what happens next - watch O'Riley this week on FOX - it is supposed to be on....Blessings ...pray on!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Acts 17:27

This is the only passage I know of that tells us why God made the world and everything in it. The text says, "God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him though he is not far from each one of us." this little verse is packed with interesting items:
1) "Perhaps reach out for him" - the "perhaps" indicates that we do not have to. God is not forcing anyone to reach out to him even though he has built his image in us so that we have a natural inclination to spiritual things. We can ignore him if we want to. God has the power to make us reach out to him but then what does he have? He has those who reach out because they have to. No love, no desire just reaching out to God like an animal, by instinct. Not too satisfying huh? Kind of like telling your husband to tell you he loves you or having to tell him to wish you happy birthday.
2) "Find him" - as if he is hidden? I think the point here is that God is invisible and transcendent. He is not like a tree or a lake he is Spirit ( John 4:24) and "finding" him requires faith. In fact it is only by faith that we can find God. Hence the importance of scripture. God reveals himself there and in nature so that we will reach out AND "he is not far." He is findable.
So, how are we doing in seeking God?
3) Seeking God is left to us. That is our part in having relationship with him. We do not earn anything by seeking him and we cannot find him by being perfect since all have sinned (Romans 3:23). Seeking is our task and Jesus promised if we knocked he would open the door and if we would seek we would fine.

Happy hunting!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Recently we have been through a rather serious drought. We were told to only water two days a week - in some places they were told to stop watering altogether. Then, a few weeks ago in began to rain and rain it did. For several weeks in a row it rained every day and sometimes it rained "cats and dogs." At the present my sprinkler system is off and has been off for some time. So, for awhile we were dry and now we are wet.

In times like this I wonder what God has in mind. If I were God I would make things go along at an even keel. It would rain every once in awhile and then it would be dry so that things did not get too wet.

So, different times come and go. What is God doing? Maybe, nothing, he might just be letting take its course for a time. I wonder if the dry times make us pray and he waits to answer (like in the woman at midnight in the bible) to see if we will hang in there? Maybe in the long run it is good to be too dry and too wet form time to time? Maybe God mixes it up so that we will not get too secure? Maybe the dry times just make us more thankful? Maybe there is a lot about God we do not know and that is why we "walk by faith and not by sight?" (That is 2 Cor. 5:7 by the way).

I guess my job here is to trust God in all situations, at every turn realizing He does not change and is not effected by dry and wet....Perhaps my job is not to have all the answers but to trust the one who is really in control.....Foree

Thursday, October 1, 2009


If someone asked me to make a list of sins I doubt I would include "grumbling." Maybe because I might be one? It is interesting what strikes us as unimportant. Probably we grumble along about one thing or another never really thinking about implications or even the effect it might have on others. Does not seem to be a really big thing to most of us most of the time, most likely. Then reading along in scripture you come to a passage like 1 Corinthians 10:10 and added to the list of Israel's sins (along with sexual immorality and idolatry) and there it is, "grumbling." One might even wonder why it is offensive to God. But then, it is. Given some thought it is obvious that the grumbling of Israel began the whole thing that led to the golden calf. Grumble a little, thoughts turn negative, grumble some more, thoughts crystallize, thinking changes and before you know it grumbling as developed into full grown dislike or even hate. Following that actions are changed and before long you are down on your knees praying to a calf or doing something you shouldn't and it all began with a grumble. "She sure isn't as pretty as she used to be." "He preaches to long." "Those songs sure were slow." ....grumble, grumble grumble....4E

Monday, September 28, 2009


Saturday Dana, my wife, announced I had a letter from the City of College Station. I thought maybe they were going to name a street after me. However, it was ticket for running a red light. The cameras got me. It came as quite a surprise. I was having my normal Saturday doing lawn work, reloading amo, watching a little TV and just hanging around. Then the letter came. $75 dollars later I am reminded Big Brother is watching. So, the day of the Lord will come like a red light ticket. I wonder if we will be ready when the mail is delivered? Too late then to stop. Foree


Relationship is the issue of scripture. Acts 17:27 tells us God made and ordered the world "so that men would seek out to him and find him..." That is our job and that reflects God's will. In the OT all the rules and procedures were not so that humanity could learn do do things just right but to form relationship with the Father (Matthew 23:23-26). Jesus tells us In Matthew 6:1-18 that "acts of righteousness" are between the Father and us, individually. As we reach out to the Father it is for the creation of spiritual connection with him. The acts we do only have meaning if that connection exists or is in process.

Relationship as foundational in the faith experience is reflected in the "greatest command" which is to love God and one another. Matthew 18:6 tells us that it cause another to sin is punishable by the millstone being tied around the neck while being cast into the sea (not much chance of reversal there!). In the same text we are told to cut off our hand if it destroys our relationship with God. Matthew 18:15 and 5:23-24 teach that relationship with each other has to precede any acts of righteousness before God.

Imagine brothers in Christ treating each other unkindly or dismissively due to disagreement. Imagine churches full of believers ignoring one another because they see things in the bible differently. Imagine fighting and arguing in a disagreeable fashion to the point that relationship is destroyed.

Jesus died for our sins. He died to establish our relationship to God. He died because he loves us. If we are worth that much to Jesus should we not be worth that to each other?

Relational theology is the theology of scripture. Relationship to God and each other (God being first) is more important that anything else. I wonder if relational theology would keep brothers closer to God and one another and perhaps stop the threats of division? Foree

Friday, September 25, 2009

Assembly (Church"

"Church" as we call it, and not completely inaccurately I would add, has been the focus of so much debate and division over the years. Brethren in Christ have decimated the body via arguments and controversies regarding the structure and practice in assembly. Interestingly there is little in the New Testament which even addresses the issues we have so boldly discussed. 1 Corinthians 11-14 represents nearly the entire biblical presentation regarding what happens in assembly. Some would argue 1 Timothy 2 is about assembly but that is a debateable point. So, 1 Corinthians 11-14; 1 Timothy 2; Acts 2 and little more give us our texts for assembly.

There is no mention of a church "treasury" in the NT. Jesus did not tell us how many cups to use in communion and the arguments made from the statement "do you not have homes to eat and drink in" has been robbed of its context. Ephesians 5:19 does not address public assembly. Hebrews 10:23ff indicates brethren did meet but the admonition there is to use the time to strengthen, edify and encourage, not divide. Praise teams, who serves communion, genre of church music, proper versions, dress, video usage, meditation times, song leaders, solos, choirs, prayer leaders,meeting times (Sunday 10AM, Sunday 6PM and Wednesday are not mandated in the text of scripture) etc...are never mentioned in the Bible.

Take another look at scripture and you will note that the arguments made regarding the foregoing mentioned subjects are simply conclusions people have drawn from their use of the bible. Someone may certainly draw the conclusion that one cup and one cup only should be used in communion but that is as far as it should go. We cannot bind where God has not bound except in the matter of our own faith.

The early Christians met (Acts 2) to take the Supper, have fellowship, learn and share with one another. It was a time of mutual edification (1Cor. 14) where things were done in an "orderly" fashion so that those who were there would worship God and be built up. It is a shame that so much division and hatefulness has been the result of meetings of the church. Maybe if we all would recognize the "greatest command" and focus on its meaning (1 Cor. 13) history would not repeat itself with yet more church divisions.

Recently a church placed a cross (modern symbol of the Christian faith) at the front of its auditorium in order to encourage focus to be on Jesus and his sacrifice for our sins. Sadly, a brother said "I told them when the cross went up I would be gone." Division over a cross. Sad but that is the road many have taken. And it all centers in what people like or don't like, tradition, practice and culture. Somewhere in the mix Jesus and the Gospel are lost. Assembly time should be a time of refreshing that comes from the Lord. Too bad HE is many times overlooked. foree

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Assembly time is important for the church family as a whole and for individuals. It really is not a time for close, interpersonal interaction. It is actually rather difficult to have horizontal connection in assembly. The room, in which the assembly time takes place, is usually structured so that everyone faces forward with focus on the whoever is in front, looking at the back of their neighbors head.

The video posted on the blog touches on what happens to us individually when we assemble. It all has to do with the heart or attitude we bring to that hour. The essence of assembly is thinking about our Father and our Lord. The songs, prayers, communion etc...are for us to look inside and up to the Father. It really is a time for reflection and thoughtful spiritual introspection. I am sure the fellow in the video is correct, Satan has a field day messing with us at assembly times:

Worry about how you look....worry about the details and structure of the service: is the preacher dressed "right?"....are the songs too slow or too fast or too high or too the singing done communion done appropriately...are the babies too loud...are there too many announcements...did I
have time to read the bulletin...and on and on it goes...Satan distracting us about the distractions and all the while the songs are sung, the head is bowed, the sermon is presented and then we leave IF WE GET OUT ON TIME...

So - where is my heart and soul at assembly time? Great question. Foree

Monday, September 21, 2009

Take a look and think about this - Stay with it for a little bit and see what happens. Foree

Thursday, September 10, 2009

What to Wear - 2

Too often when questions arise debates or "answers" have more to do with custom, likes and dislikes than with scripture. Jesus warned about the danger of "traditions" (Matt. 15:6ff) as they "set aside" the word of God. There is this argument that people should "give God their best" - relative to dress - yet the bible never says anything like this regarding what we wear. It does not even make good sense usually we wear more casual clothing on Sunday PM.
Practice (they way we do things) or tradition become cemented in our minds. When someone asks why we do it we respond out of our practice rather than out to God's will. When we do this we "set aside" the word of God in order to be guided by what we are used to doing (tradition). Now don't get me wrong, tradition is a wonderful thing - it sure makes Christmas and Thanksgiving nice - but when it becomes some point of "truth" for us then our guide is what we do rather than what God has said. How careful we must be! Foree

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

What To Wear

So the question comes "What to Wear," when it comes to "church." As I consider this question I am wondering just where it originates from a biblical perspective? Is it from 1 Timothy 2 where women are warned about costly dress? Or perhaps it comes from James 1 where God warns about honoring people due to their expensive clothing? In the Old Testament the priests were to wear a certain type of clothing and it was costly. But we are not priests of the old order and where in our New Testament does God say anything about "dressing for church?" It seems to me it is not addressed by Jesus or his authors. Of course "modesty" is addressed and that should always be the case.
My thought is the question of dress is a cultural one. For years it has been the custom of Christians to have some clothing called "Sunday Best." However, our culture is becoming more and more casual. So, are we to dress up or down? I am wondering what it is God looks at as we come before him on Sunday? Is He concerned with how we look (of course we are to be modest) or does he consider the heart of the matter-the heart? I wonder if the poor would be less appreciated by God than the rich (relative to dress or any other standard)? In all of the New Testament I find no instruction about dress before God. Is it wrong to dress "up?" Certainly not unless we are ostentatious or calling attention to ourselves. Is it wrong to dress "down?" certainly not unless we seek to call attention to ourselves.
Jesus teaches relative to "acts or righteousness" -Matthew 6- that we do them between us and God. Our "acts: are not to be done from humans to see but done between God and us. When we come together we are to do what edifies and builds up (1 Cor. 14). I just cannot find any biblical mandate what so ever about how we are to dress when we do the "acts." So, if we seek to be modest before Him, that should be appropriate and any standard we set from a cultural perspective is simply that, our standard. Well dressed or not, God wants something going on inside. What are your thoughts? Foree

Monday, August 31, 2009


So, I have had a few questions about the cabin in Colorado. Dana and I bought an acre of land on the Conejos (Rabbit) River in South Central Colorado in 2000. In 2001 the boys and I along with two brother-in-law and my sisters and one brother we went from a stem wall to a cabin int he dry in 13 days. As the years have gone by we have done the plumbing, kitchen cabinets, bathrooms and added a garage. The bedrooms are almost complete lacking only trim work and flooring. This cabin has been a lot of fun and has served as a meeting place for my siblings. This year we put decks on the front and back and they are really great. Up until this year we simply had risers nailed to the front and back door thresholds. So, this work in progress is 9 years old and it looks like at least three or four more years before we are finished. I am going to try and put some pictures up. The cabin is located in South Central Colorado at an elevation of 8500 feet. It is surrounded by mountains which rise to an elevation of 9000+ feet. The river runs about a hundred yards from our front door and has Rainbow, Brown and Cutthroat trout. I am blessed and always have wanted a cabin in the mountains. Foree

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

I Am Off

I know that title may result in a "You said it man!" But what it means is I am off for a two week vacation with my family at our cabin in Colorado. This year my boys and I along with a brother -in-law and nephew and their wives are adding decks to our cabin. Maybe I can take some pictures and put them on my blog if I can figure our how. If you want to see a really great blog go to Stephen's...he is a busy boy fishing, sky diving, deep sea diving and gardening...poor guy he does not have enough fun! So see whoever is out there in two weeks. Foree

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

It Arrives

In Ecclesiastes the writer has a chapter on time and points out there is a time for everything in this "under the sun" world. We travel through time, quite rapidly as we look back, doing the things we need to do and some things we could DO without. Important events come and go like graduation, marriage, anniversaries, birthdays and finally death. It all goes by and then THE MOMENT arrives when "our time comes" and we are done. No longer here. No more moments, no more events, no more things we do...the great equalizer visits all of us and the grave marker marks us.
Barbara Jackson
A fine, full of faith lady, who lived her life for her family
and for the Lord had her moment yesterday.
Now I look back at her life, the one I knew,
and realize what her life was about.
It was about this moment.

Her moment arrived and she was ready.
It reminds me that IT will ARRIVE.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Psalm 20 - For Others

Intercessory prayer can have great benefit for others as they face the eventualities of is left to our imagination all that can and does happen to people in different stages of life. So Psalm 20 would be a great passage to read as we consider entering the throne room on behalf of another...
"May the Lord answer you when you are in distress...
May he send you help from the sanctuary...
May he remember all your sacrifices...
May he give you the desires of your heart...
The Psalmist hopes from protection, support, acceptance and success as God listens to the prayers for self and others. "We trust in the name of the Lord" (v7). God will answer when we call. Give it a try. Foree

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Psalm 85 Just Think What He Has Done

The Psalmists relived their journey with God as they wrote their praise or question or commentary. Jewish people of faith who had this long history with Jehovah. Their relationship with God had to do with their faith and their land. They knew HE was theirs. So when they wrote their songs they remembered all He had done. As you read Psalm 85 take a look back over your life (as if it is God's land)...the ups and downs...times when you were strong as horseradish (as per Bob D.) and times when you were weak as milk...moments of joy and sadness...and the Father was always there...So the Psalmist remembers...note the words which marked the work of God in this singers life.......favor...restored...forgave...covered....put away displeasure...revive...unfailing love...peace...salvation...faithfulness....give what is good...prepares...these are our remembrances. The Father has always been there doing his good things and holding back his anger when we deserved for him to be mad. What a wonderful Father he is....we "rejoice"-v6. What would your words be? Foree

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Psalm 18:1-19 Take a Moment

Take a moment and read Psalm 18:1-19. Now there are some things to remember: Psalms are poetry - Hebrew poetry; some of the metaphors are new to us like "horn" and "stronghold" but you can tell what they mean - God is hero, conqueror, dependable. Remember this is POETRY not history or it like a Hallmark card. Too much analyzing spoils the effect. Remember to IMAGINE while the verses roll by. See the pictures in your heart and mind. Catch the spirit of the words like a poem in a card from a friend.

This Psalm is about God as SAVIOR. His beloved is in dire need ("the cords of death entangled me"). The Savior's anger is against those who punish his loved one. So, God storms out of heaven guns a blazing. He rides on the wind to rescue and save. He is like a mother saving her child from those who would destroy and kill. The love, power and gentleness of God are apparent. The Psalm reminds us that in our trouble God is aware and responsive. Finishing verse 19 leaves a picture of comfort, peace and salvation. God is always ready when trouble comes...He loves us so...(John 3:16). Foree

Monday, June 8, 2009

1 Cor. 1:10 - "Speak the same thing..."

So one reads 1 Corinthians 1:10 and comes away teaching that the family of God must be of the same "mind and judgment" on everything and the 'fun" begins. One brother believes Praise Teams are a sin...another that you cannot support orphan homes with "church money." Still another sister thinks the Spirit dwells only through the word while her husband believes in personal indwelling. The exchange of ideas and breadth of beliefs are myriad. Each believer believing their perspective is correct. In time, often, since the "same mind and judgment" cannot be found division occurs, communication stops and fellowship is withdrawn. Is that what Paul had in mind in the passage cited?

Read the passage again but do not take 1:10 out of context. Avoid turning it into a proof text. After Paul makes the comment, inspired by the Spirit I might add, he asks some questions: "Is CHRIST divided? Was Paul crucified for you? Were you baptized into the name of Paul? What is his point. the questions points all the divided brothers right back to Christ. Interestingly they were all baptized into the name of the one who died on the cross for them - Jesus Christ. He is the one about whom they are to speak the same thing and have the same judgment. He is the one in whom they put their trust. He is the one they hear. If we believers agree on Christ unity exists. Then we follow Paul's advice from 1 Cor. 8 when we still disagree on details but the basis for our unity remains intact. Good news again.!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


So give some thought to the work of God..."let there be light"..."From one man God made all men everywhere"..."To him who is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine..." "It is God who is at work in you to will and to act according to his good purpose" [you can search around to find those verses in your bible]. God, the creator and the one who sustains everything dwells is "light unapproachable"and is in need of nothing from me. This magnificent benefactor of the human race loved enough to give his only son.................................for me. It is a wonder I am included. After all the work done by the Father to bring Jesus (the administration of his grace) at one point it all fell on me. This slight individual, one among many who have lived and died and I get to be a part. God's love is grand enough to cover the world and focused enough to be pointed in my direction. God actually knows who I am and cares for me individually. To the Father I am not just another but I am his son and heir..... Right now he knows where I am, what I am doing and the condition of my heart. It is a WONDER....he knows who I am...thanks be to God for this indescribable gift. And you are HIS too, so that makes us one.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


My brother's name is Walter. HE is my brother because he was born of my Mom and Dad. We are caring the exact same DNA - we found this out when I gave him a kidney - so are brothers. So our brotherhood was established regardless of what we did.

People who confess the name of Jesus and are dead to themselves via immersion have been made one as brothers in Jesus Christ. It is because of him, himself that things which hold people apart are gone..due to Jesus unity exists. Like brothers by blood believers are brothers because of the blood of Christ. The requirement for this brotherhood is faith in Jesus as God's sin offering. So when one is immersed in Jesus' name he is in the family of God.

If we could embrace this foundation - being Jesus himself- we would be embracing unity IN CHRIST. Inside that oneness there would be differences in maturity of faith, in personal applications of God's will, in points of opinion etc...but unity would great is that! Foree

Friday, May 1, 2009


Christ means "anointed one." The Old Testament prophets longed to know what it was that God was doing "in them" 1 Peter 1:10-12. God's work to bring Christ was called a "mystery" by Paul (Ephesians 1:9-10). The Father's "Anointed One" was His choice and His choice alone. Jesus' arrival was the final act of the Father in His pursuit of his beloved (John 3:16). Jesus was/is the fullness of the divine (Colossians 1:19). He was the "word" becoming flesh (John 1:1-4,18). If you want to know what the Father had in mind when he made the world (through Jesus) then take a look at Christ. He is the focus of everything including our faith.
Faithfulness means being full of faith in Christ. Obviously the faithful will hear Jesus and defer to him relative to the activities of their lives-they will seek to obey him in all things (Matthew 28:20). The will of Christ is supreme because He is supreme, the will of the Father in the flesh, the image of the invisible God (Col. 1:15). It is Jesus who holds everything together (Col. 1:17). HE is the head of the assembly [church] (Col. 1:18). HE is the fulfillment of the law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms (Matthew 5:17-20; Luke 24:44). Christ, the center, the focus, the all in all, the one in whom we place our faith. Without him we are nothing. As Jesus says, I AM...
If the church which belongs to Christ is ever going to be faithful it must, through each member, remember what the Father has done. It must focus on the cross, the empty tomb and the Man who made that journey. Nothing, nothing is more important than faith in Jesus, nothing. If any belief, any practice, any opinion, any perspective ever takes the focus off of Jesus, the Anointed One, then all is lost.
If brothers in blood ever seek to unite on anything other than Christ himself then unity will be never be found. If peace could be found between Jews and Gentiles when they each believed in Jesus (Ephesians 2:11-22) then peace can be found between all persons who place their faith IN HIM (Paul's oft used expression). Foree

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Another One

It happens way to often...someone has a disagreement with a brother and decides that the issue, if not resolved, must result in separation. Several years ago a church began using an "affirmation" step in their elder selection process. The "affirmation" step apparently is applied in different ways by different brethren. First two brothers began debating the "issue" each of them coming from different points of view. After some discussion (and these brothers were both well trained, honest, capable preachers) the two could not come to consensus on this "affirmation" aspect of elder selection. So what is the solution? Divide. Brothers brought together in the blood of Jesus, immersed in his name, disagree over a facet of process men created and use to select elders. Now the brothers no longer give support, emotional or otherwise, to one another. One even calls his "use to be" brother a false teacher. So now once again a new church begins or established ones cannot have anything to do with one another...all in the name of truth. This is truth about something the bible does not include...the manner or methodology of appointing elders (unless you subscribe to Paul's way told to Timothy). So, God chooses not to explain the procedure of selecting elders and two brothers divide over a manner of doing it some other brother dreams the process the blood of Christ is forgotten, brotherhood is torn, feelings are hurt and on and on it the "issue" becomes more important than Christ...and Christ did not even mention the issue in the first place. So here is ANOTHER ONE, another reason to divide..."affirmation".....when will it end? Foree

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Finding Churches

If one reads the NT carefully you will find that the NT churches are much like churches today. They are filled with people...people who like us... are not complete. The disciples of the NT were unfinished. They were people in progress involved in a dynamic relationship with Jesus as Lord. As you read the Epistles you find churches dealing with the sins of her members, congregations suffering from periods of discontent and churches dealing with doctrinal questions.
Every one of the NT books have one continuing theme - keep your eye on Jesus. The inspired authors of these books, guided by God's Spirit, sought to return the focus of the members back to the Lord. If we stay focused on people, their view points and their weaknesses we will be easily discouraged. People have "all sinned" (Rom. 3:23) and if anyone claims to have no sin they are a liar (1 John 1:8,10). So the writers of the Epistles just kept tuning us back the the Lord, the Father and the Spirit.
Looking for a church without stain is like looking for a person without sin and will finally push a person to church after church bent on a path of ultimate discouragement. Keeping our eyes on the Lord and remembering we are not perfect either is the best course. Obviously we all have to keep trying, communicating...letting iron sharpen that we will grow and become more like Christ. What if Christ gave up on us? Give the church a little grace, after all Christ has given us that......hasn't he? Foree

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Recently our elders approved and addition to our auditorium. It is a physical addition which anyone who attends our assembly time would see. It is, like most anything, controversial to someone...herein lies the difficulty...I suppose that we all know that a gathering of 3 or more people, or maybe two or more people, brings with it different likes, dislikes, points of view, perspectives, beliefs etc...So what do we do as people of God who have to handle situations where differences exist? How do churches live together when members have really different points of view (just like the Christians in the bible churches by the way)? Well, two things: 1) Ephesians 2:14 says in the context of Jew/Gentile believers "He himself is our peace." That is, both Jew and Gentile alike have come to Christ Jesus. With all eyes on him there is peace. When the focus is on Him - the person of Jesus - there is peace. Paul says in 1 Corinthians that we are one because we eat of one "loaf" (10:17). We are ONE because of Jesus - we are family -co-laborers-co-workers...because of our belief and obedience to Him. 2) Ephesians 4:1-2 call us to humility, gentleness, patience and forbearance in love. Relationship words all. Knowing we are different God has given us two things: 1)Jesus and 2) The Spirit of kindness (watch his fruit Gal. 5:22). If we can all acknowledge Jesus and treat each other with the fruit of the Spirit we should be fine. This reminds me of how HE calls and wants me to be. Foree

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Getting the Picture

Jesus did it to Peter (Mark 8:33). Strong words needed for someone Jesus loved. Were Jesus' words loving, kind, patient, considerate of Peter's feelings??? At this point in time Jesus was letting his followers in on a very important aspect of their "followship" ( I made up that word)...Jesus was teaching them that a time would come when he would be gone. So, when Peter began to "rebuke him" Jesus said what he needed to say. It was the right thing to do. Peter HAD to get the picture and understand what Jesus' work here was really about.
Sometimes it is necessary for strong words to be spoken. These words are not un-Christian or even unkind they are what the need to be. Sometimes we need to know, we need to think, we need to get the picture and we can't do unless someone says what they NEED to say. Being "nice" is not always helpful or even truthful. I am sure Peter was a little hurt and it may have even been awhile before he got over this moment. But it all had to happen. Strong words sometimes are the best policy. Foree

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Have a Read

Take a few minutes and read 2 Samuel 13-19:8 - well, it will take more than a few minutes. As you read the account of Absalom's conspiratorial attempt at taking the God given throne of David away (from his father no less) take mental notes about the human activity. By human activity I mean how those human beings operated...they were politically motivated, self serving, "get ahead at any cost" people. Absalom murdered his brother Amnon because he (Amnon) raped THEIR sister Tamar. Joab, David's "general" was taken out of that post by the King (his position was awarded to Amasa [19:13] and then Joab acted like his "brother" and killed him [20"9-10] in order to get his position back. Shemei (relative to Saul and still mad he was not king) spat, kicked dirt and threw rocks at David and his entorage as they passed through his area THEN after David beat Absolam he comes crawling back for forgiveness [19:18ff]. Ahithophel, David's adviser leaves David for Absalam and the kills himself when Absalam quits taking his advice (David had asked God to thwart his wisdom). On and on it goes. People acting just like people, wanting their way, desiring to be popular or well known - lying, cheating, back biting that their agenda would win out...THROUGH IT ALL God's will is carried out...God's mind does not change...and all the shenanigans in the world fail to foil the will of God. When will we learn to have faith in God and quit trying to manipulate events for the purpose of fulfilling our own personal agendas??? Lesson learned - I hope - foree (Soon a look at David)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Now What?

A few weeks ago my wife was robbed while coming out of grocery store. She was unloading her groceries from her basket into the car and another car pulled up slowly and close. Dana moved her basket a little and an arm stuck out of her car, grabbed her purse and sped off. The police came and took Dana's statement - got the license number from Dana - and then nothing came of it. Three weeks later the thief was arrested in another town while doing the same thing. The lady was brought back to College Station later for trial. While in jail awaiting her outcome this lady was baptized into Christ by a man who attends our congregation....Now What? The challenge is to see this woman in a new light - she is now a sister in Christ - so what about forgiveness from the Groves? God has made her right with himself so now she is right with us. Both glorious and challenging. What God has done for us he has done for another. Just how great is that!

Thursday, March 26, 2009


Folks - there is something wrong with my blog cite - sometimes I cannot post and the last time it only posted part of my blog - the end of EXACTLY is that WHEW! we do not have to be exact - our job is to trust in God and live like the tells us to live - I hope this last part makes it - wish me luck Foree

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


So just how right do we have to get it to be right with God? There is bible study and interpretation, prayer (unceasing), communion (in the right manner), singing (from the heart not just the memory), church attendance (mandatory if the elders demand), benevolence (even when we think people are just taking advantage), whew! Then there is the "Greatest Command" and added to that is that we have to love even our enemies - and if we only love those who love us we have not accomplished anything - everyone does that! THEN there is the moral demand of God "be perfect as I am perfect" and beyond that is the heart matter. It is not enough in the NT just to commit adultery you cannot even lust or take a second look (and the way women dress that is real hard not to do...). What about evangelism - remember the sermon "you cannot go to heaven alone" and the song "You Never Mentioned Him To Me?" And what about if you have committed the BIG sins: adultery, divorce,

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Here Again

This blogging remind me of my walk with God. I sense the need to take a moment and write - for my own good and remembrance. Yet - the days go by and being busy with life taking the time becomes a question of taking the time to do it...then I return and write again...and when I do I am benefited...
God is present, waiting, hoping, providing for our time with him. He watches us do our things in this life he gave us...he waits...we continue on, consumed with many good things...the Father waits...then at some moment we return perhaps in prayer or reading or a moment in church as if to say "I'M BACK!...those are the moments when God is right there- open arms - warm heart - willing - able - ready....
I am so happy to have Him, my father, "Abba" - he is patient and I am glad - Foree

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Some of my most vivid memories are of songs and singers. At home we would gather with our family or family and friends - usually after a meal - and we would sing. Our church had picnics in the mountains (I was raised in northern New Mexico) and after the burgers were eaten we would sing. At church camp we sang. Youth devotionals included singing. "Singing" has a ring when you say it. The word itself is melodious. The writers of songs are not inspired but their words put to music are often as close to the inspired message as one can get.
Take a moment and remember a song - When Peace Like A River - or Listen To My Heart - whatver song your might choose and start singing. As you sing think and feel the message the words deliver and consider how the music itself prompts relfection and emotion, feeling and thought. It is an amazing thing TO SING. As Darryl Tippen wrote in THAT'S WHY WE SING; Sing, Sing, Sing - it is an amazing moment which thrills the soul and transports us right into the heavenly throne room. Give it a try and watch the blues or the worries or the dread mealt away - Sing And Be Happy - sing and the happiness comes. Foree

Monday, February 23, 2009


I am not sure about the making of wine and just what all goes into the process. I am sure that I have some doubts about people who say "I can taste the berry" or "this is kind of frutty" or "musky" etc... But I just do not know about the making...I know it does not happen by itself. Grape juice left in a bottle will not end up a fine Merlot with lots of "body." Wine has to be made - that is why Jesus' miracle in John 2 was a miracle...
Relationships, like wine, have to be made. Men and women cannot just fall into marriage - it has to be done, made, produced. Friendship does not work well when the relationship is taken for granted...Spirituality, relationship with God, is a process, begun like marriage with a commitment, but constructed by a way of life. Faith begins very simply, it is belief in God. As time goes by and belief deepens through experience, prayer, trial and personal encounter with God's Spirit it is deepened and this trusting, dependant relationship emerges. So, life is a dynamic encounter with God in which personal commitment crosses with God's care. The result is a fine, full bodied, tasty and enjoyable experience. Like wine, spirituality is comes out of process and it is fine.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


What would happen if we opened up to God with no , I mean no reservations?
When I found Dana she was IT! It did not matter we only had a few dates over a few months period of time. It did not matter my folks were scared because she came out of the blue. It did not matter I had no money for a ring or that everything was not lined up just did not matter that our engagement was not long enough...she was it and that was was a love struck young man knowing he found her and nothing else mattered - no reason in the world would ahve kept me away...this was IT! I did not wonder how I knew - I did not seek advice - I did not
What if we took God like "ifs" "ands" "buts" just okay here I am, take me, change me, guide me, use me....I am here to do your will O God.....
What a life we would have...just open up to God without reservation and trust him to do with us what he wills...what a life we would have...

Thursday, February 12, 2009


In 1Samuel, King Saul lost his throne because he failed to destroy all the Amaliktes. Shortly afterward David was anointed king, however, it is not until 2 Samuel 5 (many years later) that David actually took the throne. During his time of waiting all kinds of terrible things took place: Saul tried to kill David, Johnathan and David formed an alliance to protect David from Saul, Abner, Saul's "General" fought against David after Saul's death, David's own son Absolom campaigned against his Father....there were wars and killings and basically a civil war among the Israelites. Then when the wars were over David took the throne.
Now why did God allow all of that mayhem instead of just crowning David and have it finished? Why the wait for David?
Those questions can only be answered by God. God does things in his own time and our job is to trust Him even if we do not know why things happen the way they do. God's will, will be done. Our job is to trust him no matter what. TIME is nothing to God. It is everything to us. No matter how slowly time goes by, and no matter what happens, God is to be trusted. Our job is to trust, not to reason why. The only thing that matters is what God wills and what God thinks.

Friday, January 30, 2009


God wants all of us...get a concordance and look up eyes and ears, minds, body, soul, spirit and heart. In various pssages in different contexts God asks for eyes that are not blind (John 9), hearts that are open and honest not hard and stubborn and calloused....he wants ears that can hear (Mark 4; Luke 18)...all so that the can reign in us...
There are many things that blind us or make us hard of hearing. It sure is easy to let the spirit wander and the heart focus on things we may like or things which make us feel good...God wants all of us...that is Lordship...He wants us to come to him open, children...ready to experience and learn and try...
You know that is no so hard when you think about it...opening up and letting God in...humbly giving him our all...then he can work....

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Matthew 7:1-5

Another penetrating thought from the Master. Jesus knew human kind all too well. Ever heard someone say "I have a sense about people....," "I can read people pretty well." My thought is most of those people whom were sensed or read never had a chance to tell you what they were thinking at the time...How easy it is to think we know the motivation of another or know why they think they way they think or do what they do. Husbands and wives never know one another well enough to be on point about why something is said or done.
What about error? Why do people believe some of the things they believe? " I know why, they are dishonest or perhaps a little stubborn or they just will not listen to what is right." Talk about arrogance! But how would one know if a person who just made the last statement was arrogant?
Only ONE person knows the heart, motivation and desire of another (unless it is spelled out). We humans have no telepathy which allows us to interpret the inside of another. Oh we can see when an action is wrong or when a stated belief is out of line with God's will. But looking beneath that, beyond the words into the spirit and mind belongs only to God. Jesus reminds us in the passage above to leave judgment to God. Verse 6 tells us to be aware of people who reject God's will (don't give pigs pearls) but we must never make the mistake of going beyond that and thinking we can sense anothers heart, motivation or spirit. What a relief...I do not have to answer for anyone except myself. How liberating not to have to decide about your inner workings. We leave that to the all knowing Father. Foree

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Matthew 5:43-48 WHEW!

Before you read the text above take a second and remind yourself about the "GREATEST COMMAND." You know what it is! Now take another trip through the passage in the title. That really lets us know what love is. It is remarkable to me that God knows His creation so well. We have a tendency to love those with whom we agree, and really feel connected to people who think like we think or make decisions similar to our own. If the color is right and the politics are correct - If agreement comes easily and If people give us as much grace as we give ourselves....If no one cuts us off and on and on it goes....Enemies! We do not speak to them, have them over, give them a gift or a phone call...we even allow ourselves the privilege of speaking against them with someone we "love." Through it all Jesus says if we love those who love us SO WHAT! Everyone does that..even thieves have honor among themselves....WHEW I would have to be reborn to love my enemies...and that is the idea. May God create us into what HE wants us to be. foree

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Matthew 5:37!

There are a lot of really heavy commands from Jesus. If you call someone a fool you are in danger of hell fire (Matt. 5:22). If you only love people who love you, you have not accomplished anything (5:47). You cannot even lust let alone commit fornication (5:28) and you should cut your hand off if it causes you to sin. Then there is 5:37 - "let your 'yes' be yes and your 'no,' no." Keep your word Jesus says!
If you sign a contract - keep it! If you make an appointment - show up! If you tell someone you will help them move - do it! If you promise at the altar to be there till you die - hang around! Promises are made, agreements are entered and vows are taken. Sadly not keeping one's word does not seem as grave as adultery or being unloving. Oh well, I changed my mind, my heart is not in it, it is monetarily beneficial to do something different. Another road is taken, a different decision made and a word is broken. No big deal. Except to Jesus who believed your word should be your bond. Foree