View from Paradise

As most of you know Pricella and I are moving to Paradise. Our home closes later this month. (7/2017) We are so extremely blessed.  I have not written anything for along time even though it is one of the things that gives me the most pleasure. As I have said in the past God is constatntly prompting me to write and I tend to find many reasons not to.

Today I just want to thank God for his abundant Blessings and patience with me. As we move to Paradise our new home I think of Paradise our future home. The one that has been prepared for us eternally with our Father in Heaven by his Grace and our faith in His Son Jesus Christ. My wife and I have been excited, frustrated, depressed, overjoyed, angry, grateful and just about any other emotion you can think over the last several months. We have been trying to sell our house in Redding, made several offers on houses in Paradise, second guessed every decision we have made and just have been generally confused about what God is doing. Luckily we serve an Amazing God who never is confused about his purposes. We still have not sold our house in Redding and until the ink dries we don’t have a house in Paradise. Yet I am convinced that all we have gone through and all God has in store for us is to our benefit and God will continue to bless us beyond all we can imagine.

I recently read a devotional, and I would give credit to that person if I could remember who wrote it, that talked about the fact that we have “rich people problems”. That really put into perspective what Pricella and I have been going through. There are more people than not who would love the problems that we have. I’m sure that relates to most of us especially here in the United States. I personally am extremely blessed and as a nation we are one of, if not the most, blessed nations history has ever seen.  Yet we have no problem being discontent with whatever situation we are in. Even if you are not monetarily wealthy the next time you are feeling less then grateful about your situation remember, where you stand with God, is where your true wealth is. As children of God all our issues are “rich people problems”.

God is Good!!!

Faith Under Fire

Faith Under Fire

As our young christian men and women go off from their homes to enter our societies places of wisdom and higher education they are soon faced with the reality that their believes are generally not accepted and even condemned by the academic elite. Ridicule and peer pressure soon start to attack the foundations of their faith. Unfortunately many are not equipped to defend this faith. They know it is foolish to deny the love, grace and wisdom of God, but without adequate knowledge they are soon overpowered by the constant barrage of secular “wisdom” and walk away from the Faith that they know is truth. In fact it has been shown that 75% of them will be talked out of their faith while in college.

Psalm 14:1 (NIV)The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, their deeds are vile; there is no one who does good.

In this passage the word for fool describes a man who is morally deficient. They believe what they believe because they lack wisdom and moral character. Unfortunately when it is professor after professor in classes you are required to attend, without a strong foundation and a ready defense of what you believe, you falter and question truth.

Proverbs 12:15 (NIV) 15 The way of fools seems right to them,  but the wise listen to advice.

As a christian we need to determine are we going to follow the counsel of fools or follow the wisdom of the Lord. Their can only be one truth. It is not determined by popular vote or opinion it is simply the truth. Consequently if it is not truth than it is a lie regardless of who proclaims it. We need to stand firm on the truth that has been made so obvious by God’s creation and his Word. This next verse from Isaiah is a great description of what secular academia has produced in our colleges and universities. God is displeased with the condition of our education system and it is time to defend our youth against the erosion of truth.

Isaiah 59:14-16 (NIV) 14 So justice is driven back, and righteousness stands at a distance; truth has stumbled in the streets, honesty cannot enter. 15 Truth is nowhere to be found, and whoever shuns evil becomes a prey. The Lord looked and was displeased that there was no justice. 16 He saw that there was no one, he was appalled that there was no one to intervene; so his own arm achieved salvation for him, and his own righteousness sustained him.

Dr. Frank Turek is working on a solution to this tragic problem for our youth. I encourage you to visit his website and get this information to the college aged and those soon to be entering college that are near to you. Give them the knowledge and wisdom to defend the faith that is within them. Please follow the links below and share this valuable tool.

http://www.crossexamined.org/problem.asp

<a href=”http://www.crossexamined.org/”>Present the evidence at my church.</a>
<a href=”http://share.snacktools.com/58EEC9D9E8C/fznszl89″>Read the facts for free and pass them on.</a>

GOD is GOOD !!!

True North Travel Tip #5 “Ephesians 6:11-12”

True North Travel Tip #5

Ephesians 6:11-12 (NIV) 10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.

Don’t leave home with out your armor, better yet don’t even roll out of bed!! We wear clothes to protect the body and yet let our souls be naked. Grab your bible and read on through verse 18, God has provided an amazing wardrobe, don’t neglect to use it.
It’s a tough world out there, but God is stronger.
God is Good!!!

The Gaurdians

Over the Christmas holidays I was blessed to go to the movies with my whole family. we ended up choosing a movie called The Guardians which I had never heard of but the grand kids were very excited to go see it so the choice was made. It is a very well done animated movie that stars Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, Sandman, Jack Frost and of course a nasty villain. I am one of those people who likes to think about what we can take from a story that is deeper than just the basic story and that is what I want to talk about today.

In this story the heroes are battling the nasty villain but are not being successful because the villain has caused the children to not believe. Eventually the heroes loose all there powers as the children stop believing and there is just one child left in all the world who still believes. Of course they figure out a way to turn the tide, the children all start believing again, the heroes get their powers back, defeat the villain and life becomes all happy again in animation land. Okay!! so maybe I left out a few points but that’s the jest of it. Watch the movie it’s really good all the kids loved it, even the 49 year old kids.

Sometimes, probably more accurately a lot of the time, we as Christians, whether we want to admit it or not, view God in the same way that the movie depicts it’s heroes. We tend to have an attitude that God needs us to believe in him and with out us he looses his ability to be God. I taught recently and made a statement that “God doesn’t need us” at the time I did not elaborate because it was not really what I was teaching on. Later a member of the church came up to me and asked what I meant by saying God did not need us. His basic complaint with my statement was that of course God needs us because he made us to have fellowship with him and to spread his Gospel. Which is true, God did make us to have fellowship with him, not because he needed fellowship with us, but because he “chose” to make us so we could have fellowship with him. He chose to use us to be his instruments in this world. Because God is God, if he needed us to have fellowship with him, he wouldn’t have given us the ability to choose not to have fellowship with him.

The point I am trying to make is our belief, our love, our desire to know God has no effect on who God is. God is because He is! He, by his Grace and Love, chooses to seek fellowship with us, chooses to use us in his grand plan for his creation. God needs us because he chooses to need us not because he needs us to need Him.

Your probably saying “I know that God is God regardless of my belief” what’s the point. I think that we as Christians can get an attitude that God is here to answer our prayers, heal our ills, comfort our pains, defeat our enemies and in general do all the things we ask of him. You look at some of the teaching and trends in the Christian community and you would think that God was created to do our bidding. That we have the authority to tell God what he is to do. I personally do not want a god who is small enough to take commands from me. He does answer are prayers and does some pretty amazing things that we ask of him. He truly does want us to ask him and depend on him to answer are prayers, but we need to remember, he does what he does because he chooses to do it not because he needs to.

God loves his creation, he loves you and I and gave everything “John 3:16” to show us that love, be confident in that! Just always remember who needs who! God’s power never fades.

God is Good!!!

 

Amazing Grace

We serve an Amazing God! I have been so blessed and busy the last couple months. I have started teaching a Sunday school class at Cornerstone each week and am really enjoying the study prep and the awesome conversation we are having. We are currently walking thru Romans, what an essential and revealing book, if you haven’t taken the time to really study it you should! I will be sharing the studies here so feel free to study along with us and if you have comments or questions please leave a comment and I’ll get back to you. If you live in Redding come by Sunday mornings at 9:45 and join us. Coffee is always on!. That is at Cornerstone Community Church on Victor ave between Cypress and Hartnell we would love to have you.

We will also be starting a Wednesday night study at our home. Food , Fellowship and God’s Word what more could you ask for? If you are interested leave a comment and I will get in touch with you. I don’t know yet which book we will be studying but I am praying about a few Old Testament books. It is going to be fun.

I am very excited about what God is doing and the vision he is giving me for ministry in the next couple months. Please pray that I hear him and not me.

As always

GOD is GOOD!!!

 

Life and it’s distractions

It is interesting how life can distract you from the things that are truly important to you. God has placed in my heart a desire to teach, disciple, and care for my fellow believers in Christ. That is why I set out on this endeavor to share my thoughts and insights on the amazing love that our God has for us through Jesus in this blog. This ministry: writing, teaching, encouraging, showing the simplicity of the magnificent Gospel of Jesus Christ that so many have made so complicated and confusing, is what I feel God has called me to do. I started this blog The True North Tablet as a way to reach out and share these thoughts. Unfortunately it has been a challenge staying focused on my writing, distraction is always waiting to consume my time and mental energy, thankfully the conviction of not doing what God has placed on my heart is always present too. God is very patient!

I am excited about the future. God has given me the opportunity through our church, Cornerstone Community Church in Redding, to start teaching the adult Sunday School before services and Pricella and I will be hosting a Tuesday or Wednesday night home fellowship soon at our house. I will be sharing these studies here as well as continuing with my normal blog posts. I am also working on some other writing projects that I will be talking about more in the future. Please pray for me, that I can keep focused on the important things and that I hear God in everything I do.

Thank You all that take the time to read what I have written, I hope it is a blessing and encouragement to you. Please leave a comment now and then so I can learn from you and if you have questions please let me know and I will do my best to answer them.

Again I ask for your prayers.

GOD is GOOD!!!

What is True North?

{You will find this post on my web site under the title “What is True North” but for those who don’t get around to exploring my page I thought it would be good to post in my blog for all to read.}

What is True North?

In a Word Christ!

I have had this concept of True North in my head for many years. We all have an ultimate destination at the end of our life, most would say that destination is some form or concept of Heaven, unfortunately for many they are on a wrong path.

We as Christians have been given all we need to reach our destination, eternity in the presence of God. An infallible map (the Bible), an experienced guide (the Holy Spirit), protection from the storms (our Father GOD) and the key to finding our destination our compass (Jesus Christ).

Christ is clear  in John 14:6 “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”  When you have your heart focused on Christ, if He is your Savior you will reach your destination. You will find True North, your eternity will be in the presence of God in all Glory. In the simplest understanding of the Gospel, Christ is all you need, not religion, law, creeds, theology or even absence of sin. That simple Gospel is the foundation of my personal faith.

That being said God has given us so much to help us along our journey. Let us start with the map, the Bible, unless you are really adventurous you don’t head out in the wilderness without a good map. We as Christians have the ultimate map written by the one who created the terrain we are set to walk through. Make sure you are intimately familiar with the map before you go on with your journey.

God has also given us a guide in the Holy Spirit, it is always a good idea to listen to your guide. Some times we can’t see were we are going fog, storms, treacherous pathways, darkness, confusion can place us in very dangerous situations. God has given us the ultimate guide one who is always with you waiting to give you guidance and wisdom if you are not to proud to ask.

As for protection, shelter from the storm, God the Father Himself is constantly watching over you. There is not one stumbling stone or peril that he is not completely aware of that you will face in your journey. He will protect you and if needed carry you through anything you will encounter as long as your trust is in Him.

That is what I see when I talk about True North. It probably has some theological and doctrinal holes in it, but that’s okay, the way I read it the only theology that has ever saved anyone is “Christ Crucified”! He did it for you, he did it for me, if I don’t see you before just head True North and we will meet someday.

God is Good!!

June a very long month.

I am not sure what it is about this month but it seems to be lasting forever and filled with a tremendous amount of distracting busyness. Consequently I’ve have been sidetracked from my writing. I have had several days of extreme determinism to get in here and give an update and before I know it a couple days have gone by and I still haven’t written anything. To those of you who actually are following my blog I apologize, and wish I could say it will never happen again, but that would be foolish.

We have been so busy traveling or working all month, totally busy but accomplishing nothing. We had a health scare with my wife Pricella, that thankfully God took care of and it turned out quite well!! Praise God!! Traveled to Eugene for a Birthday, Sacramento for fathers day, and my wife left me all alone for five days to go on a trip with her sister. On top of that of course was work and traveling back and forth to Susanville for that. This is where you just totally start feeling sorry for my hectic life because of course none of you ever have to deal with busy lives. Any way I’m done complaining, at least for the next couple hours.

Actually like I have said before God is so Good and I am an extremely blessed man. I was able to teach this last Sunday at my Church. Pastor Sung was doing an event for Korean War Vets so I filled in for him. It was so awesome to be able to teach God’s Word, I hope it was a blessing to those who heard it. I love to teach, I just wish speaking was as easy as writing, there’s not nearly as many “Umms”  when you write. Thankfully when you teach the Word it’s hard to go wrong. The audience was also great, what a wonderful little church with a great group of people.

The other thing I’ve been doing is working on a novel that I started probably 12 years ago and then stuck in the closet. The idea has always been nagging at me but I haven’t taken the time to work on it so I have started again basically from page one rewriting what I have and hopefully adding some improvements. Pray for me on this, that God gives me words to fill the pages, I would like to have something that resembles a book by this fall. I also want to work on some other writing projects that I have in mind as time allows.

Any way God Bless and I will be back tomorrow to continue regular programming!

GOD is GOOD

Memorial Day

I hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend. I also hope that whatever you did you took time to honor our lost heroes. Memorial day is for remembrance of those who have lost their lives in service to our country, and they deserve that honor and more, but I would also like to thank all the rest who are serving or have served to defend our freedom. Every person who has ever wore an American military uniform is a hero!! Thank You and God Bless all of you!!

I personally have never served in the military, I would have if needed but at the time I was at that age things were pretty calm in the world. We had a President that actually meant what he said and there were few who wanted to test him. They actually had more people volunteering to serve than they needed, so our school hardly even was visited by any recruiters. Thank You President Reagan.

I haven’t  been unfortunate enough to have lost someone close that was in the military and I am very grateful for that. So to say I understand the pain of that kind of loss would be ridiculous, but my heart does go out to all the moms, dads, husbands, wives and children who have personally lost there greatest hero’s. Nothing can replace that loss, we cannot bring them back, but we can honor their sacrifice. We need to defend here at home what they died on foreign soil for, FREEDOM!! Life in the greatest country the world has known, I did not say perfect, but history shows we are the most giving and compassionate nation  to foreign countries both allies and enemies, the world has ever seen. We need to make sure that we remain the nation that these men and women died for! Not some subservient pawn of the U.N. or any other foreign government. We also need to keep our government here in Washington accountable to the people who have given them the power that they have or remove them. We have always been a great nation and we can remain a great nation as long as we stand firm to the ideals and convictions that have gotten us to this point in history. If you are not involved, you need to get involved, before that is no longer an option. VOTE! I could tell you how I would like you to vote, but that’s your choice, just make sure your being heard. Honor those who died so you could have that right!

I would like to honor two vets in my life that to me are great heroes. My dad who passed away about eight years ago served in the Korean war. I regret that I never talked with him much about it, so I have limited knowledge of what he went through. I do know that as an only child and son of a farmer under normal circumstances he would not have been drafted but they needed him so he went. As I write this I am very sad realizing how little I know about his experience, friends he lost, things he saw, questions I can never get answered. But I did know him and not only was he a hero in the war, but he was an amazing honorable hero to everyone who loved him throughout his life. Thank You Dad!!

Kirk Kirkland, my father in law was also in the Korean war. He was captured and kept as a prisoner of war for around two years. Like most POW’s it’s not an easy subject to talk about but I have had the honor of hearing bit’s of what he went through. All I can say about his experience and any other POW’s experience is they are a special kind of hero! No one who hasn’t been there can even attempt to understand what it is to be a POW. If you know a POW make sure you honor them and thank them. Aside from losing your life defending our country it’s one of the greatest sacrifices a soldier can endure. Thank You Kirk!!

God Bless every United States service man and women and Thank You!

GOD is GOOD!!!

Blessings

I had the most awesome day yesterday! Went down to Sacramento to have lunch with my son Brad to celebrate his 25th birthday. Sad to think he is my youngest. Went to Thai food with him and my beautiful wife. Then took him to REI to get some new climbing shoes. What a great blessing he is! He is going to be starting school to get his fire sciences degree and just started the summer season at Cal Fire. Very busy, if not working he’s off climbing a cliff or some other wild adventure. Brad if you happen to read this, I couldn’t be prouder of the awesome man you have become. Draw near to God, he wants you to know him better. Remember no matter where you are you’re in his hand.

After we left Sacramento we went to Paradise to catch the last game of the season for Easton and Eli. They are doing so well with their baseball, and they are getting way to big! Princess Ema of course was there, adorable as usual. Josh and Jessica are such good parents, I am so blessed to have such an awesome son and daughter. It was great spending a couple hours with them.

I am so blessed, family is priceless. Never be to busy to enjoy your family. All the other stuff will always be there, cultivate the things that have true value, your relationship with God first and then all the people he has placed in your life. Material things are nice, and I have my share of meaningless things that I really like, but all that stuff passes away. People are what’s valuable, they are priceless to God, and should be as much so to us.

I have missed several days this last week, sorry about that, lots going on. I hopefully will be back on track this week. I have several projects I am working on so keep me in prayer. I think the next several months are going to get real busy and exciting in what the Lord is doing in my life. I pray that I keep hearing his voice and not my own.

God Bless You!!! I will be back later today with more.

GOD is GOOD!!!