May, 2001

Be ready
God is love


Look up


Jesus is there for you

(May 31, 2001 6:17 AM CDT)

We had an entire day of steady rain yesterday.
We thank the Lord.

Read Luke 10 .

Jesus sent them out in pairs before him
to every town he intended to visit. (verse 1)
They were the advance team.
They prepared the people to receive Jesus when he came.
Are we the advance team?
Do we share about Christ?
Rejoice that your names are inscribed in heaven. (verse 20)
Are you going to heaven?
Is that your destination?
I hope and pray your name is inscribed there.
You have revealed this to the merest children. (verse 21)
The message of the gospel is simple.
Children can understand it.
Don't make it complicated.
Love the Lord with all your heart, soul,
strength and mind. (verse 27)
Love the Lord with all that you are.
Lean on him.
Think often of him.
"Then go and do the same." (verse 37)
Be a compassionate person.
Help those who are hurt on the side of the road.
Patch things up.
See they are cared for.
Yes, you are busy and have no time for anyone,
but make time for those in need.

(May 30, 2001 6:18 AM CDT)

Read Luke 9 .

"Take nothing for the journey,
neither walking staff nor traveling bag;
no bread, no money." (verse 3)
We depend totally on the Lord.
He is our provider.
He gives us all that we need for our journey.
"Whoever wishes to be my follower
must deny his very self,
take up his cross each day,
and follow in my steps." (verse 23)
It is all there.
Follow the steps of the Lord Jesus.
Humble yourself---exult God.
Suffer for the Lord in doing his service.
The Christian life is a life of serving others.
"Lord, would you not have us call down fire
from heaven to destroy them?" (verse 55)
They would not let them pass through their town.
How would you react?
You have the Son of God next to you.
Do you wipe out the whole town?
Is that what you want God to do?
Is your God a God of mercy?

(May 29, 2001 6:11 AM CDT)

Josephine would have been 90 years old today.

Yesterday I planted flowers in front of my house.
I bought the flowers near 49th and Leavenworth.

Read Luke 8 .

"The seed is the word of God." (verse 11)
It is planted today.
It grows today.
It is alive.
You can see it.
"Master, master, we are lost!" (verse 24)
We are far from God.
We are lost.
Find us, Lord.
Give us directions.
Save us.
"Go back home and
recount all that God has done for you." (verse 39)
Share what God has done in your life.
Tell others of the joy of knowing Christ.
Tell of the struggles.
Tell of the good times.
"The breath of life returned to her
and she got up immediately." (verse 55)
Can you imagine being there?
Can you imagine seeing a dead girl come back to life?
Can you see the look on her parents' faces?
Are they tears of sadness or tears of joy?
What do you see?
The word of God is alive.

(May 28, 2001 8:42 AM CDT)

We remember all that gave their lives for our freedom.

Read Luke 7 .

"Young man, I bid you get up." (verse 14)
The dead man sat up and began to speak. (verse 15)
Jesus has the power over life and death.
He speaks and life breaks forth.
He has the authority.
Let us praise God for his power.
"God has visited his people." (verse 16)
Come, Lord Jesus.
Live among us.
Walk with us.
Change us, Lord.
"Since neither was able to repay,
he wrote off both debts.
Which of them was more grateful to him?" (verse 42)
We ask Jesus to forgive our sins.
We cannot do it ourselves.
We are in debt.
We cannot pay him back.
We ask the Lord to forgive us.
He is generous with all.
Be grateful for what he has done for you.
"Little is forgiven the one whose love is small." (verse 47)

(May 27, 2001 8:36 AM CDT)

Someone asked me to pray for them yesterday.
Can you pray for them also?

Read Luke 6 .

Jesus spent the night in communion with God. (verse 12)
He prayed.
He prayed all night long.
Then he picked his 12 apostles.
Do you pray before making big decisions?
"Blest are you who are weeping; you shall laugh." (verse 21)
Are you sad?
Are you lonely?
The Lord will comfort you.
It is his promise.
This will only last a short time.
"Love your enemies,
do good to those who hate you." (verse 27)
Can you do it?
Can you love those who have hurt you?
Ask Jesus to give you the strength.
Respond with love.
"Be compassionate, as your Father is compassionate." (verse 36)
Be thoughtful.
Reach out to those who are sad and crying.
Give them a hug.
Listen to their problems.
Each person speaks from their heart's abundance. (verse 45)
What is inside you?
Is it goodness?
Is there hope there?
How can you share what you don't have?
Be filled with the joy of the Lord.

(May 26, 2001 7:56 AM CDT)

I saw this long line of people
at Mall of the Bluffs last evening in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
I imagine they were waiting to see the movie "Pearl Harbor."

Read Luke 5 .

Jesus got into one of the boats,
the one belonging to Simon,
and asked him to pull out a short distance
from the shore. (verse 3)
Jesus will ask you to do things.
Some things will be easy, like rowing a boat.
Some things will be more difficult.
And Jesus is right there with you.
He is in your boat.
They filled two boats with fish. (verse 7)
When Jesus is with you there is abundance.
You have more than enough.
Share this abundance.
"Leave me, Lord. I am a sinful man." (verse 8)
None of us is perfect.
Compared to God we are nothing
and yet God loves us so much.
He comes to us.
Yes, we are sinners, but he forgives us.
"My friend, your sins are forgiven you." (verse 20)
He wants you to be forgiven.
He wants you to have this abundance of new life.
Ask him to forgive your sins.
He invites you to a change of heart. (verse 32)
Accept this invitation.
Receive forgiveness.
Jesus is the pearl.
He is safe harbor.

(May 25, 2001 6:26 AM CDT)

Read Luke 4 .

Jesus was tempted by the devil. (verse 2)
Sounds strange for God to be tempted,
but Jesus was fully human and fully God.
Jesus endured all the things that we do,
but he did not sin.
If he can do it, we can do it.
Resist the devil.
He is a created being.
He does not have that much power.
Calling on the name of Jesus puts him down.
Jesus, we call on you today.
Put evil in its place.
Help us to resist temptation.
Help us to live a holy life.
Jesus read the Bible. (verse 16)
He read it in public.
These are important words.
"Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled
in your hearing." (verse 21)
Jesus is the word of God.
The word of God is alive.
The scriptures point to Jesus.
He is the anointed one. (verse 18)
He brings us glad tidings.
He sets us free from sin.
He gives us sight to understand.
He blesses us with a year of favor. (verse 19)
"To other towns I must announce the good news
of the reign of God,
because that is why I was sent." (verse 43)
He went from town to town.
He had a mission.
He had something to say.
Listen to him.
Receive the word.
Let it change you.

(May 24, 2001 7:21 AM CDT)

I had a 53 for 9 holes of golf last night.
I'm starting to remember how to play.
But the fingers on my right hand are hurting this morning.
Ouch. Arthritis? I don't know.

Read Luke 3 .

John proclaimed a baptism of repentance
which led to the forgiveness of sins. (verse 3)
You turn around.
You are going one direction and you stop
and then you go the other way.
You move toward God.
You can even run to him.
He is there waiting with open arms.
Yes, he will forgive all your sins.
Jesus will baptize you
with the Holy Spirit. (verse 16)
Receive this baptism from God.
He sends his Holy Spirit to you.
The Spirit will lead you.
It is a gift for you.
You need the Spirit.
God loves you.
He wants to bless you.

(May 23, 2001 6:18 AM CDT)

If you read the Bible,
you will see changes in your life.

Read Luke 2 .

A census was taken. (verse 1)
An audit was taken.
Where are we?
What are we?
We look at our life and check where we are.
Examine your life.
Examine your spiritual life.
"She gave birth to her first-born son." (verse 7)
Jesus was born.
Truly a joy to behold.
A wonder of wonders.
Angels welcome him. (verse 13)
They praise him.
He is special---very special.
He is the Holy One.
Strangers come to see the baby. (verse 16)
They were told to go see him by angels.
They went quickly.
They saw Mary, Joseph and the baby.
They reported to others these events.
"Mary treasured all these things
and reflected on them in her heart." (verse 19)
These are amazing events.
We reflect on their significance.
God sent his only Son.
We think about what God is doing.
We wonder about this little baby.
What are the possibilities?
What will this child be?
"The child's father and mother were marveling
at what was being said about him." (verse 33)
Simeon greets this child.
He has waited a long time.
His prayer has been answered.
He personally gets to see the light of the world.
Now he can go home.
Anna gives thanks to God. (verse 38)
She prayed and then she saw.
Prayer is so important to be aware of the child.
Over and over people come to see him
and talk about him.
They welcome him.
The Lord has come into the world.
The world will never be the same again.

(May 22, 2001 6:07 AM CDT)

We pray for all the graduates this year.
I see hundreds of names in the newspaper.
There were about 50 graduates at Boys Town.
I saw some of them at church on Sunday
and they sang a good-bye song to all the congregation.
It was sweet.
Until we meet again...
God bless them all.

We start a new book of the Bible today.

Read Luke 1 .

It's all about joy.
"Joy and gladness will be yours." (verse 14)
"The baby leapt in my womb for joy." (verse 44)
"My spirit finds joy in God my savior." (verse 47)
The message of the Gospel is a joyful message.
"I am Gabriel, who stand in attendance before God.
I was sent to speak to you
and bring you this good news." (verse 19)
Listen to the words of the angel Gabriel.
These words will comfort you.
These words will lift you up.
Our prayers have been heard. (verse 13)
Sometimes we pray for many years for an intention.
We pray for that impossible situation,
like I talked about yesterday.
We are assured that God hears those prayers.
He honors our requests.
He considers what is best for us.
Write down your intentions.
Lift them up to the Lord each day.
Expect an answer.
Gabriel was sent to Mary.
"The Lord is with you." (verse 28)
She was special.
You are special.
"You have found favor with God." (verse 30)
May we all be like Mary.
May we live a holy life.
"God who is mighty has done great things for me,
holy is his name." (verse 49)
She was close to God.
She understood the message.
She prayed.
She responded when God asked her.
Proclaim the greatness of the Lord. (verse 46)
God is great.
God is good.
He is joy.
(Note: After writing this I feel like I have not
even touched the surface of the depth of meaning in this chapter.)

(May 21, 2001 6:18 AM CDT)

Happy Monday!

Read Mark 16 .

"Who will roll back the stone for us?" (verse 3)
Is that you?
You have this huge obstacle in the way.
How will you get by it?
Who will come to your rescue?
Who will help you through this trial?
Jesus breaks into your life.
He comes to you.
He brings hope where there is no hope.
He brings life where there is no sign of life.
He was raised from the dead. (verse 6)
You talk about an impossible situation---
here Jesus had died a few days ago
and now an angel is telling you he is now alive.
One moment grief---the next moment joy.
Is it possible?
Can Jesus do this?
Can he solve my impossible problem?
One moment no hope---the next moment peace.
Give your impossible problem to Jesus.
Let us pray.
Jesus, I give you my problem.
I trust in you.
All things are possible with you.
You are my only hope.
Please, help me, Lord.

(May 20, 2001 8:28 AM CDT)

Read Mark 15 .

"They bound Jesus, led him away,
and handed him over to Pilate. (verse 1)
Do we do that?
Do we bound Jesus?
Do we say that Jesus can't do this or that?
Do we limit his power?
"What crime has he committed?" (verse 14)
Jesus was without sin.
He was the spotless lamb.
He was God.
He was not guilty.
We are the guilty ones.
Lord, have mercy on our souls.
They divided up his garments rolling dice for them. (verse 24)
Do we gamble with our lives?
Do we take chances?
Here is Jesus---the sure thing---
and we ignore him to seek the things of this world.
Lord, we believe in you and only in you.
We call on you to help us.
At noon darkness fell on the whole countryside. (verse 33)
It was a very dark day when Jesus died.
We did it.
We put him to death.
How could we do such a thing?
We broke his heart.
We did not return his love.
Lord, teach us how to love.
Forgive our sins.
Heal us, Lord.
Bring us home.
"Clearly this man was the Son of God!" (verse 39)
Who else could love as he did?
Lord, we are sorry for the things we did.
We are so confused.
Save us, Lord.

(May 19, 2001 8:39 AM CDT)

Read Mark 14 .

"Let her alone. Why do you criticize her?" (verse 6)
I see people called by the Lord.
They are doing his service.
Others are criticizing them.
Who do they think they are?
Let us build up the kingdom of God.
Let us encourage others to greatness.
Let us pray for one another.
"He for his part kept looking for an opportune way
to hand him over." (verse 11)
Judas was very confused.
He was out of it.
How could this happen?
He was right there with Jesus day after day.
He was so close to God and missed the point.
Let us learn from his mistake.
Let us never betray the Lord.
Let us stand up for Jesus and the truth.
Examine your actions.
"This is my body." (verse 22)
"This is my blood." (verse 24)
Let us remember.
We come to the supper.
This is holy.
He gave us a great gift.
He did it for a reason.
We don't understand why he did this.
We see bread and wine---so common.
It is a covenant.
God reaches out to us.
God has done his part.
Will we do our part?
"My heart is filled with sorrow to the point of death.
Remain here and stay awake." (verse 34)
It hurt.
Jesus was in pain.
He took upon himself our sins.
He did not have to do this.
His heart was breaking.
He was crushed.
Some say he literally died of a broken heart on the cross.
And in turn he asks us to stay awake
and we can't even do that simple thing. (verse 37, 40, 41)
Is it that hard to keep our eyes open?
Are we that tired?
He asks us 3 times to stay awake.
We don't know what to say. (verse 40)
Some people think that Mark (the author of this gospel)
is the one that ran away. (verse 52)
"Are you the Messiah,
the Son of the Blessed One?"
"I am." (verse 61, 62)
Jesus is the one.
There is no need to look further.
He is God.
He is the Blessed One.
He is the Lord of all creation.
You have found him.
What else can I say?

(May 18, 2001 6:07 AM CDT)

Happy Friday to you!

Read Mark 13 .

There is something special when I read the Bible.
It is a sense of wonder at the greatness of God.
It goes beyond the words.
Here is the one who made the universe
trying to convey thoughts to me.
These are important thoughts.
I'm trying to grasp them.
"Not one stone will be left upon another---
all will be torn down." (verse 2)
Jesus is talking about himself.
He will give everything
(like the widow in yesterday's reading).
He will give all that he has.
The result will be new hope.
Through the death of Jesus we have new life.
The old way is passing away to make room for the new.
Things don't stay the same.
You knock down one building to build another.
The Holy Spirit speaks. (verse 11)
The world is different.
The good news of the gospel is proclaimed.
The Spirit speaks to us in 2001 all over the world.
Some will receive this news and some will not.
Some have built huge walls over many years.
It is very difficult to reach them.
They don't listen.
They are cold.
"Keep praying that none of this happens in winter." (verse 18)
You need the warmth of God.
You need to be open to God's Spirit.
"Stay awake!" (verse 33)
Be aware of God.
Learn his ways.
Look around you.
Pray to him to know the truth.
Be ready if he comes today.
"Be on guard!" (verse 37)
Protect this gift of faith you have been given.
Hold your Bible up---pick it up.
It is something very precious in your very hands.
(Note: The words: "Stay awake!", "Be on guard!" are right
from the Holy Spirit to you and me today.
That is how I see it.
The words of God in the Bible are alive right now.
They echo down through the centuries.
Eternal truth.
The Holy Spirit in you will verify this.)

(May 17, 2001 7:11 AM CDT)

Read Mark 12 .

He sent the son whom he loved to them. (verse 6)
God the Father sent his Son Jesus to us.
How do you welcome him?
How do you treat him?
Is there respect?
"At the resurrection,
when they all come back to life,
whose wife will she be?" (verse 23)
Interesting question.
Jesus explains that heaven is different.
There is no marriage in heaven.
We live like angels.
Heaven will be different.
It will be full of surprises.
Love God with all your heart, soul, mind
and with all your strength. (verse 30)
All that you are---everything you are---
is it focused on God?
Are your thoughts there with God's thinking?
Is your heart a caring heart?
Is your soul one with the Father?
Where does your strength come from?
Are you inspired by the Holy Spirit? (verse 36)
Do you give everything to God? (verse 44)
Then maybe
"You are not far from the reign of God." (verse 34)

(May 16, 2001 6:10 AM CDT)

I had a dream this morning right before I woke up
that I was playing in the snow
in front of the house where I grew up.
I have not lived there in a very long time.
Someone threw a shovel full of snow at me and it fell short.
I was standing in the street.
I don't recall seeing anyone else in the dream.
I was warming up my car down the street.
I had no car when I was a kid.
This was not my current car, but a previous one.
Dreams are strange.
Here it was around 95F yesterday in Omaha.
Instant summertime.
Definitely no snow around here.

Read Mark 11 .

You can read the Jerusalem Post today.
It is still an important city.
You hear about Jerusalem in the news almost every day.
It is an important place.
Jesus entered it on a colt. (verse 7)
Why? He came in humility.
The people spread their cloaks on the road to welcome him.
They cried out "Hosanna!" (save us)
He was coming to save them.
Jesus entered the temple. (verse 15)
He drove away the money-changers.
They were cheating people.
They should not have been there.
They were not respectful.
The temple was a holy place.
It was a place of prayer.
He was angry.
He came to restore it to its proper setting.
Learn about Jerusalem.
Learn about prayer.
Have respect for holy places.
Turn the tables.
Restore prayer to your life.

(May 15, 2001 6:07 AM CDT)

Overnight someone (Patrick) was shot here in Omaha
in a drive-by shooting .
(He died a few days later.)
That is sad.
Pray for them and the person that
was doing the shooting.
They are so confused.
They need prayer.

Read Mark 10 .

One thing you probably have noticed
in reading Matthew and now Mark,
is that things repeat.
Jesus is asked about divorce in Matthew 19
as well as in Mark 10 that we just read today.
Mark was a source for Matthew.
Mark was written in about 70 AD
and Matthew in about 85 AD.
"At the beginning of creation
God made them male and female;
for this reason a man shall leave his father and mother
and the two shall become as one." (verse 6, 7, 8)
Let us pray for all married people today.
May they be blessed.
May they be one.
God be with them.
"There is one thing more you must do.
Go and sell what you have and give to the poor;
you will then have treasure in heaven.
After that, come and follow me." (verse 21)
Saint Francis did this.
He gave up his wealth to follow Christ.
How attached are you to your wealth?
Could you give it away?
Do you give any of it away?
The man in the gospel turned away.
He could not let go of his many possessions. (verse 22)
He was sad.
It is interesting to note that this man
could have made the right decision.
He could have followed Jesus.
This is your free will.
You decide.
You make choices.
Will you make the right choice?
Will you be happy or sad?
"You have nothing to fear from him!
Get up!
He is calling you!" (verse 49)
Do you fear Christ?
Are you afraid of him?
He calls you.
He calls you by name.
Do not fear.
He has come to restore your sight.
He wants to bless you.
"Immediately he received his sight and
started to follow him up the road." (verse 52)
Get hold of the vision.
Start up the road.
Follow him.
Be happy.

(May 14, 2001 6:06 AM CDT)

Read Mark 9 .

"If out of the kindness of your heart
you can do anything to help us, please do!" (verse 22)
We pray to Jesus.
We ask him to heal someone.
We plead with him.
We ask for help.
Help us to trust you, Jesus. (verse 24)
You are maker of all things.
You are the creator of the universe.
We rely on you.
We depend on you.
All good things come from you.
Help us, Lord Jesus.
"No man (or woman) who performs a miracle using my name
can at the same time speak ill of me.
Anyone who is not against us is with us." (verse 39, 40)
The followers of Jesus will perform miracles.
They will call on the name of Jesus.
It is normal Christianity.
It is there.
It is to be expected.
Miracles do happen.
Be on the side of Jesus.
Speak well of him.
Don't use him as a swear word.
Use his name to bring down blessings.

(May 13, 2001 12:29 PM CDT)

Happy Mother's Day.
God bless them.

I'm listening to Phillips, Craig and Dean
right now.
The CD is titled "Let My Words Be Few".
I like song #3 on the CD titled the same thing.
You can listen to a sample of it on both these links.
This morning this song was playing
over and over in my mind.
It is a very moving song.
It brings tears to my eyes at 00:39 sometimes.
It is beautiful.

Read Mark 8 .

Large crowds assembled. (verse 1)
Many are curious about Jesus.
They have come to see him.
They followed him for 3 days far from home.
You take a chance when you follow Jesus.
You go out on a limb.
Jesus will provide for you.
If you go out of your way for Jesus,
he will take care of you.
Jesus sighed when he was asked for a sign. (verse 12)
He was frustrated.
These people were so misguided.
They needed help---lots of help.
What are you looking for?
What do you seek?
"Do you still not see or comprehend?" (verse 17)
Jesus multiplied the bread twice to feed the people.
They don't get it.
They don't understand.
Do you understand?
It takes two times to heal the man's eyes. (verse 24, 25)
Strange, isn't it?
Why did Jesus do this healing in two phases?
He has the power to do it all at once.
I don't know how to explain this.
"Who do you say that I am?" (verse 29)
Jesus puts that question to you.
Is he a nice guy?
Is he God?
Is he cool?
You get to answer that one.
Watch what you say.
No response is not a good response.
"What can a man (or woman) offer
in exchange for their life!" (verse 37)
What do you have?
What do you got?
It better be good.
You only get one life.
You only get one chance.

(May 12, 2001 9:38 AM CDT)

Read Mark 7 .

"This people pays me lip service
but their heart is far from me." (verse 6)
It is more than words.
Being a Christian involves action.
It involves doing God's will.
Do not nullify God's word with traditions. (verse 13)
Maybe a tradition you have is to break a window
in vacant houses.
This destroys other people's property
and is against God's word.
Test your traditions.
Keep what is good.
Delete what is bad.
"All these evils come from within
and render a man (or woman) impure." (verse 23)
What is in your heart?
Is it evil?
Is it holy?
Check yourself.
What is in there?
"For such a reply, be off now!" (verse 29)
When you talk to God what do you say?
How do you respond to his requests?
Are you willing to listen?
Do you change at all?
"He has done everything well." (verse 37)
That is Jesus.
He is wonderful.
He is great.
Do you praise him?
Give him all your respect and honor.
He is the best.
Be open to him. (verse 34)

(May 11, 2001 6:13 AM CDT)

Last evening I was talking to these people
who are moving to Loveland, Colorado .
Here is a picture I took on Thursday, September 19, 1996
of the lake along Hwy 34 .
It is a nice town.
They have a house along a different lake there.
God be with them.

Read Mark 6 .

Jesus returns to his hometown of Nazareth. (verse 1)
The people put no faith in him.
Here he was one of them and
they did not believe in him.
It is sad.
Jesus worked just a few miracles there.
The lack of faith blocked the blessings.
Don't let that happen to you.
Have faith.
Jesus sent them out 2 by 2. (verse 7)
He did not send them out alone.
He gave them a partner.
Many people have walking buddies.
They encourage each other to get out and exercise.
You need a faith partner.
Pray with someone.
Read the Bible with them.
When you "return" you get to give a report to Jesus. (verse 30)
What will you tell the Lord?
Will you say, "I took my talents and did not use them"
or will you report amazing things? (verse 13)
Jesus told them to sit in groups. (verse 39)
Why? I don't know.
It is a strange request.
When we get to heaven
maybe Jesus will explain why he did that.
He must have had a reason.
They sat in groups of 50 or 100.
It is easier to count them that way
and get the 5,000 people number. (verse 44)
It created aisles, so people could walk around easier.
They looked like flower beds. (verse 40)
Maybe it has something to do with flowers.
I don't know.

(May 10, 2001 6:31 AM CDT)

Read Mark 5 .

The herd of about 2,000 swine rushed down the bluff
into the lake, where they began to drown. (verse 13)
Evil is like that---it destroys things.
I read in the newspaper about
the illegal drugs methamphetamine and ecstasy.
They destroy people and their lives.
I wonder why people do this.
Pray for those addicted.
Pray for the people selling these drugs.
Lord, have mercy on their souls.
Jairus fell at Jesus' feet and
appealed to him for his daughter that was sick. (verse 22)
Pray for the sick.
Appeal to Jesus.
Kneel down and pray for healing.
Bring your children to Jesus.
"Little girl, get up." (verse 41)
The girl had died.
The people were crying loudly outside her house.
Jesus brings her back to life.
He says to feed the girl that was 12 years-old.
Only God can do these wonderful things.
Jesus is showing who he is to these people.
He is showing who he is to you.
Get up.
The woman that had been sick for 12 years
tried to touch Jesus. (verse 25, 28)
(12 years and 12 years?)
If you are sick, go to Jesus.
He has power.
He has the blessings you need to continue.
When you have given up hope after many years,
Jesus is your hope.
Jesus said, "Fear is useless.
What is needed is trust." (verse 36)
Do you fear?
Do you trust?

(May 9, 2001 6:27 AM CDT)

Yesterday at work I made a mistake.
I misread an e-mail to me
and changed the wrong thing in a program.
I could not believe it.
How could I have done that?
I felt terrible.
I assumed some things that were not true.
Now it is fixed.
Pray for me to do a good job at work.

Read Mark 4 .

Jesus instructed the crowd at great length. (verse 2)
Jesus was a teacher.
He had much to say.
"Let him (or her) who has ears to hear me, hear!" (verse 9, 23)
Do you have ears?
Are you listening?
Are you reading what Jesus said?
"To you the mystery of the reign of God
has been confided." (verse 11)
If you are reading this, you are on the inside.
You are privileged.
You have been entrusted with the mystery.
What are you doing with this knowledge?
Anxieties over life's demands
and the desire for wealth choke you. (verse 19)
Are you worried about your job?
Do you want to be rich?
Will you do anything to get ahead?
Are you worried about everything and anything?
Don't choke.
Jesus rebukes the storm. (verse 39)
He commands the wind and waves to be still.
It is amazing that he can control the weather.
The disciples were in awe of this. (verse 41)
Jesus is God.
He controls everything.
Why do you worry?
He can even help you with your job, if you ask.
I pray at work to figure out a problem.
"Why are you lacking in faith?" (verse 40)
Trust Jesus.

(May 8, 2001 6:14 AM CDT)

Read Mark 3 .

The man stretched out his hand
and it was perfectly restored. (verse 5)
Jesus asks us to do things.
They are things for our own good.
Do we do them?
He told us to pray.
He asks us to help the poor.
He tells us to inform others about him.
Then we will be perfectly restored.
"Because he had cured many,
all who had afflictions
kept pushing toward him to touch him." (verse 10)
Jesus can touch you today.
He is everywhere.
Reach out your hands to heaven.
Be ready to receive what the Lord has for you.
He is here right beside you.
God is with you.
Jesus appointed the Twelve. (verse 16)
He picked people out.
He called them by name.
They had a mission.
They were needed to minister to others.
Jesus calls you.
Will you respond?
"If a kingdom is torn by civil strife,
that kingdom cannot last." (verse 24)
What side are you on?
Are you with Jesus are against him?
Do you call him Lord?
Do you submit your life to him?
You cannot have it both ways.
Take a stand for Jesus.
Whoever does the will of God
is brother and sister and mother to Jesus. (verse 35)
Be part of the family.
Be a brother or sister of Jesus.
How close can you get?
Do what God wants---not what you want.
Trust the Lord to know what is best for you.

(May 7, 2001 6:20 AM CDT)

It is a brand-new day.
It is full of possibilities.
What will you do with your time?
What are your goals?

Yesterday I was thinking about the gospels.
The basics are right there.
Christianity is not that complicated.
It is simple.
It is right there in the gospels.
I suggest reading the gospels first in your
study of the Bible.
Read them over and over until you feel
you know Jesus.

Read Mark 2 .

They made a hole in the roof
and let down the mat
on which the paralytic was lying. (verse 4)
There was a great crowd.
It was very difficult to get near Jesus.
These men made a hole in the roof.
It was like a door from heaven was opened.
Jesus saw their faith. (verse 5)
He responds to faith.
Trust in Jesus---that is faith.
Believe in his promises.
Step out in faith and expect to be healed.
Jesus has the authority to forgive sins. (verse 10)
Be forgiven.
Don't be paralyzed---stand up and walk.
Give praise to God. (verse 12)
Thank him for what he has done for you.
Be in awe of his power.
"Follow me." (verse 14)
Here is another key.
You see it many times in the gospels.
It is basic Christianity.
Follow Jesus.
Watch where he is going.
Stay close to him.
Don't wander away and get lost on your own.
He is the way---there is no other.
Fast and pray. (verse 20)
Give up something you like.
Fill that time with prayer.
Do something for God.
Make room for something new in your life.
God wants to pour new life into you. (verse 22)
Are you ready to receive?

(May 6, 2001 8:25 AM CDT)

We finished Matthew and today we start Mark.

Read Mark 1 .

We see the messengers over and over in the gospels. (verse 2)
They bring us news---it is news we need to hear.
God is reaching out to us.
He is trying to teach us.
We need forgiveness of our sins. (verse 4)
We admit we have done wrong.
We have made mistakes.
We have hurt others and God.
Ask Jesus to forgive you today.
Jesus is the one. (verse 11)
The voice from heaven tells us about Jesus.
He is favored.
He is a beloved Son.
He is God.
"Reform you lives and believe in the gospel!" (verse 15)
Jesus asks us to change.
He asks us to believe in him.
Come after him.
Drop what you are doing and serve God.
Abandon the material things as James and John did. (verse 20)
"Before long the whole town
was gathered outside the door." (verse 33)
They came to see Jesus.
They came to see the miracles.
They came to be healed.
Gather around him.
Bring everyone that you know.
"Everybody is looking for you!" (verse 37)
They all looked for Jesus.
They tracked him down.
He went off to pray in the desert.
That is where the power comes from.
Prayer is so important.
Prayer comes first and then miracles happen.
Do you pray?
"Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand,
touched him and said:
'I do will it. Be cured.'" (verse 41)
Jesus had feelings.
He cared personally about this man.
He ministered to him one on one.
He is a personal God.
He is there for each of us.
We can kneel down before him and ask for things.
He responds to us individually.

(May 5, 2001 9:35 AM CDT)

I wonder if it will ever stop raining.
The other night I played golf in the rain.
That is an adventure.
I had a score of 64 for 9 holes.
Then it gets so dark you can hardly find your golf ball
near the end of the evening.
You hit the ball and it is gone.
I played a Titleist 3 the whole time.
I did not lose it thanks to the other guys
helping me find it several times.

Read Matthew 28 .

Jesus has died.
He is gone---or is he.
There is a blinding light. (verse 3)
The guards are blind to the truth.
Mary Magdalene and the other Mary
don't know what is really going on.
An angel appears.
It is a messenger from God.
The message is---Jesus is alive! (verse 6)
He lives today.
He lives on and on.
He is new life.
He promised he would rise and he did.
Jesus suddenly appears. (verse 9)
He is amazing.
First he brings peace to their lives.
The women embrace his feet.
They want to touch him.
They want to believe.
He says not to be afraid. (verse 10)
Do not be afraid.
Then go and tell others.
Share the joy.
He is with us until the end of time. (verse 20)
We are his disciples.
He is there to help us find our way
in the dark over and over.
Do not have doubts. (verse 17)
Jesus will help you.
Fall down and praise him.
Be baptized in the name
of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. (verse 19)
Receive blessings and grace from above.
Be a son or daughter of God.
"That is the message I have for you." (verse 7)

(May 4, 2001 6:11 AM CDT)

We are now in the rainy season.
It is raining every day.

On radio KGBI they are playing:
"You are the holy one.
I stand here amazed, Lord."
by Charles Billingsley .
I like that song.

Read Matthew 27 .

There are many things to comment on and dwell on.
Judas regretted his action deeply. (verse 3)
He made a terrible mistake.
He betrayed Jesus.
And yet he still could have been forgiven.
He did not have to hang himself.
He gave up all hope.
He could have been Saint Judas.
No matter what you have done
ask Jesus to forgive you.
There is always hope!
"Are you the king of the Jews?" (verse 11)
"This is Jesus, King of the Jews." (verse 37)
Jesus is king.
His kingdom stands forever.
He rules over his kingdom.
He is Lord of all creation.
We bow down to him and him alone.
We honor him.
We hold him high.
He is Lord.
We worship him.
They made a fun of Jesus and taunted him. (verses 29, 39, 44)
He was insulted.
Can you believe that?
He had done no wrong and they attacked him.
Why kill him?
It makes no sense.
It is bizarre.
Pilate washes his hands of the matter. (verse 24)
Jesus did not deserve that.
What do you do when people insult you?
What about when people laugh at you?
What is your response?
If you suffer because you believe in Jesus,
you will be blessed.
Pray for those who attack you.
They do not know what they are doing.
Jesus gave up his spirit. (verse 50)
He gave his life.
He gave all he had to give for us.
He cries out for us to come to him.
Come to the cross---
even carry the cross. (verse 32)
Be of service to the Lord.
Follow him.
Lift high the cross in your hands.
"Clearly this was the Son of God!" (verse 54)
Jesus is God.
He was not just a man.
He is God.
He is divine.
The centurion was a witness.
Tell others what you see.
Share the truth that you know.
Jesus is---the holy one.

(May 3, 2001 7:35 AM CDT)

It is the National Day of Prayer today,
so pray for the USA or your country
where you are and your leaders.

Read that Bible today too!

(May 2, 2001 6:10 AM CDT)

Back on February 25th I told you about a friend of mine.
His wife died yesterday.
So pray for him and his family.
Thank you.

(Note: This is Spring To Life so you might wonder
why I write about death.
Why write about the sadness and tears?
Death is part of life.
With all the technology that we have we still die.
Jesus overcame death.
Jesus is life.
If you believe in Jesus, you have hope.
It can be the beginning of new life.
The new life can begin today.)

It's going to be a rainy day here in Omaha.
I wonder if I will get to play golf after work.
I joined a golf league at Dodge Park in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
The radio just said a lot of people had hail damage
from the other night.

Read Matthew 25 .

"Open the door for us." (verse 11)
There it is again.
The window of opportunity is only open so long.
Be ready for the coming of the Lord.
Be ready to meet God.
"Immediately the man who received 5,000 silver pieces
went to invest it and made another 5,000." (verse 16)
Invest in the kingdom of God.
Do it right away---don't wait.
Some say the returns are out of this world.
"Come, share your master's joy!" (verse 23)
That is your goal---to be with God forever.
Share the joy of Jesus.
The king rules.
"The king will say to those on his right:
'Come. You have my Father's blessing!
Inherit the kingdom prepared for you
from the creation of the world.'" (verse 34)
The gift is there for you.
It has been there a very long time.
There is no dust on it---it is sparkling clean.
It is yours.
Do you want it?
Death is not the end.
You will live forever.
Will you be with God or not?
Will you have joy or not?
Do it for the Lord. (verse 40)
Don't live for yourself.
Live for the Lord.

(May 1, 2001 6:08 AM CDT)

We had marble-size hail last evening at 9:45 PM.
I was praying for protection from the storm.
This morning you can see leaves
all over the yard from the hail that attacked.

Read Matthew 24 .

"Not one stone will be left on another." (verse 2)
One day the wind, rain and hail will destroy my house.
Our world is temporary.
We are only here for a short time.
Are you "here to stay" or just passing through?
What is your attitude?
"What will be the sign of your coming and
the end of the world?" (verse 3)
Jesus says to be watchful.
Be ready.
Be prepared. (verse 44)
It will happen.
"As the lightning flashes from east to west,
so will the coming of the Son of Man be." (verse 27)
It will happen quickly.
It will be a surprise.
No one knows the exact day when it will happen. (verse 36)
The words are right there.
They are from Jesus.
No one knows.
"Because of the increase of evil,
the love of most will grow cold." (verse 12)
Evil is all around us.
Resist it.
Fight it.
Are you cold?
Do you love?
"Happy that servant whom his master discovers
at work on his return!" (verse 46)
Be busy.
There is work to be done.
Proclaim the good news. (verse 14)
Be a witness.

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