May 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Mothers have one of the most important and challenging jobs in the world. The daily duties of a Mom include: housekeeper and home manager, dietician and cook, laundry manager, inventory analyst and expert shopper, chauffeur and errand runner, educator and tutor, communications expert and problem solver, counselor, encourager, event planner and activities director, finance manager, and health care provider. Mothers raise the next generation of adults who will either be a credit to her and a positive contributor to society or a burden on society. Motherhood is a full time calling which requires God’s help.

Every mother needs support, encourage, and help in her effort to raise morally responsible and biblically responsive children. ...

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May 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

You and I grew up hearing the axiom, “actions speak louder than words.” Its counterpart is also pretty familiar, “talk is cheap.” In counseling Elsie and I desire to go beyond words, beyond platitudes, beyond promises to see actions. Only when we see actions will we know that change has taken place. Change will not occur simply because a client says the right words. Actions speak louder than words.

How do we move beyond words to actions? Several things must take place:

1. Motivation

There must be sufficient motivation to move from words to action. We can be motivated by self, love, threat, fear, or pain. All of those will work to a greater or lesser degree but a powerful motivation for action is pain. Nothing ...

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May 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Men and women do NOT think alike neither do they have the same needs. Physiology and brain scans have documented the uniqueness of each gender and presented a good case for why we need each other. Husbands and wives are truly better when they work as a team. 

For husbands to love their wives, they must understand the unique needs that wives have. Listed below are four of the most important needs wives have. Yes, these are generalizations and not tailored to the specific needs some wives may have. They are, however, generalizations drawn from thirty years of counseling couples.

1. Relationship

Wives are the “relationship minders” in the family. They want to insure that everyone in the family is in a good relationship...

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May 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

THE GARBAGE DUMP

Growing up in Illinois, my parents often took vacations in Ludington, Michigan. Friends of theirs had a residence on Hamlin Lake just east of Lake Michigan. I have wonderful memories of those carefree days of learning to waterski, jumping down sand dunes the size of small mountains, eating ice cream at Barnhart’s Marina, and the garbage dump. Yes, the garbage dump. One of our favorite activities was to join the “townies” after dark at the town garbage dump. With cars ringing the dump all with headlights shining we would watch the bears pawing through the garbage looking for dinner or an after dinner snack. It was fascinating! Garbage dumps are favorite snack shacks for bears.

Garbage dumps have been...

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April 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Easter as well as springtime brings new hope. Here in Minnesota, spring marks the end of winter and the rebirth of green and colorful plants and flowers. Buried all winter under a heavy blanket of snow and frost, tiny sprouts bravely immerge. I have seen this repeat year after year my whole life, yet I am always amazed that God can bring dead looking things back to life every spring. People drive on frozen lakes in January and swim in the same lakes in June!! Isn’t God amazing!!

Just as God melts the frozen lakes and brings plants back to life in the spring, He raised his Son from the grave on Easter Sunday. I pray that this truth will grab your heart and get your full attention this Easter season. Spend some time in quiet ...

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April 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Israel had witnessed God’s amazing deliverance. Held in bondage in Egypt as slaves to build the edifices of Egypt, the children of Israel cried out and God sent them a deliverer, Moses. Through 10 mighty plagues God powerfully defeated Pharaoh and the gods of Egypt and set His people free by the blood of the lamb. The death angel “passed over” (Passover) the houses marked with the blood of the lamb.

Freed by the blood, Israel took the spoils of victory from Egypt and marched triumphantly into the wilderness. When Pharaoh and his army tried to capture them at the Red Sea, God delivered His people by parting the sea and drowning their attackers. Instead of gratitude, the children of Israel immediately began to grumble at ...

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April 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Recently I received an email from a Christian friend whom I respect. He wanted my opinion and guidance on the topic of the inner Christian life. His Bible study group was studying a companion text by a Roman Catholic priest who has written extensively about the inner life of the Christian, the prompting of the Holy Spirit, and how to discern His voice and act on it. It created something of a stir in the group. I answered his questions and gave him my thoughts on the subject. One of the group members contacted me via email to ask for further clarification of where I stood. 

The subject falls under the rubric of Christian mysticism. Christian mysticism seeks to grow deeper in the inner life, discern the prompting of the Spirit, and turn...

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April 1, 2018 @ 8:00 AM

Let’s be honest, Christians, because I don’t think I’m alone in this. It is hard for me to pray. I’d like to say that I’m too busy or I don’t have time but those are excuses not real reasons. As my pastor used to say, “An excuse is the skin of a reason stuffed with a lie.” So, no excuses. I’m either too lazy or secretly don’t think prayer works or don’t think that God is listening and will answer me. In addition, one of Satan’s goals is to prevent us from praying. So, prayer is hard for me. Why? I can’t see God and it feels so alone. Me and the Unseen God. Alone. In addition, prayer means telling God my deepest, darkest secrets (as if He doesn’t already know...

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March 1, 2018 @ 7:00 AM

On February 21, 2018 the world lost a true man of God. William Franklin Graham Jr. was promoted to Glory to spend eternity with His Lord and Savior Jesus Christ whom he served so faithfully. He was 99 years old and would have turned 100 on November 7, 2018. I grew up during the years of the Billy Graham crusades. He held crusades all over the United States and around the world. He preached the gospel to millions of people and multitudes walked the long isles to accept Christ at his crusades. He was not one bit shy, hesitant, or ashamed to tell people about Christ and their need for salvation. He boldly proclaimed God’s Word. He said in a taped interview I listened to recently that there really is no such thing as mass evangelism. It ...

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March 1, 2018 @ 7:00 AM

You’ve probably seen the insurance commercial featuring actor J. K. Simmons leading a novice through the insurance company’s Hall of Claims. The claims are fascinating: a bull moose who rams a swing set which, in turn, crashes through the windshield of an RV, a car in a parade which catches fire in the trunk, a father and daughter dancing on the floor of their house whose pounding feet knock paint cans off a shelf in the basement spilling paint everywhere. Fascinating stuff! Every commercial concludes the same way with Simmons declaring, “We know a thing or two because we’ve seen a thing or two.”

Elsie and I often feel that way. God has given us insights into problems and difficulties because we’ve seen ...

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