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DON’T DESPISE DISCIPLINE

“Nathan said to David, “You are the man!”   2 Samuel 12:7 God has blessed me to be a part of an accountability group for men in pastoral ministry.  Once a month the men take turns “sitting on the hot seat” and sharing about certain things happening in their particular ministry context and personal life.  In addition to having…

WHERE ARE YOU HEADED?

“Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ”.  1 Corinthians 11:1 I get psychologically charged whenever we’re preparing to visit my in-laws cabin in northern Wisconsin.  For me (and Leah) that place provides the ultimate opportunity for rest and spiritual reflection.  There’s nothing quite like it.  The only sounds to be heard is the sonnet…

THE TREASURE OF CHRISTIAN BIOGRAPHY

“Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ”.  1 Corinthians 11:1 Today I want to briefly share with you a practice that Leah and I have cultivated and enjoyed as we have together pursued God and served Him in ministry.  It is the discipline of reading Christian biographies. I call it a discipline in that, as with…

THE DECEITFULNESS OF RICHES

“The seed sown among the thorns is the one who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.” Matthew 13:22 Wow, this is a truly beautiful place to live. I found myself speaking those words out loud last week during our vacation…

THE AUDACITY TO BELIEVE AGAINST ALL HOPE

“The LORD said to Gideon, “The people with you are too many for me to give the Midianites in their hand, lest Israel boast over  Me, saying ‘My own hand has saved me’” Judges 7:2 As Russia’s military moves forward in their invasion of Ukraine, the world sort of watches with a collective mixture of sadness…

THE CO-OPERATION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

“But I, brothers, could not address you as spiritual people, but as people of the flesh, as infants in Christ.”  1 Corinthians 3:1 There was a time when Hollywood and the general public seem to have this obsession with child celebrities.  I don’t know if that is still the case today.  But when I was growing up, kids…

FINDING COMFORT AFTER FAILURE

“Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to me. I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against Him, until He pleads my cause and executes judgment for me.” Micah 7:8-9 What a game. That was my initial…

LEADING WITH TRUTH

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. 2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable…

GRACEFULLY BROKEN

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me”. Galatians 2:20 Dear NCC family and friends, Like many of you, the change of the year has allowed me occasion for some writing and personal reflection.  The last year was a very trying one for everyone and there is…

GIVING THANKS

“Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18 The view of the bright evening sun fading slowly behind the distant bluffs was quite refreshing to behold.  I could only imagine Leah’s reaction to this glorious image.  I had the task of managing a fairly large moving…