I Don’t Need 20 Bucks

27 Jul

I Don’t Need 20 Bucks

Prayer is a strange thing.
I wish I could say I understand it, but I don’t.
Despite our lack of understanding, we still pray.
I guess that’s what faith is all about.

I don’t know about you, but I live in a bubble.
Most of my days are insulated away from people who don’t know Christ.
I’ve been praying this would change.
Really praying.
Expectant praying.

You know what? God has been answering.

In just a few weeks we’ve been having crazy awesome experiences.

The other night my wife sent me to a house to buy a cabinet.
It’s not like me to go to some strangers house with a since of expectation that God is doing something, but I did. So did my wife.

The young couple invited me in and took me to the cabinet.
There was pain on their faces.
Even I could see they were in need.
I didn’t want the cabinet, and their faces dropped.
I’m ashamed to say it wasn’t until I was in my car that I realized I don’t need 20 bucks.

I headed back into their house.
“Excuse me, I know this may sound weird, but I want you to have this 20 bucks.”
I should have bought their cabinet to help insulate them from shame, but God knows.
Regardless, they seemed thankful.
“Can I be praying for you for anything,” I asked?
She said, “yes.”

Call me silly, but I think that encounter only happened because of prayer.

At least, I think because of prayer I actually realized the need.

People desperately need to hear the words of life.

I got back in my car and wept.

I prayed.

And I realized, I don’t need 20 bucks.

What is it you are expectantly praying for?


17 Jul

Wordle Picture Acts

Go to the Temple and give the people this message of life!” –Jesus

A fun little reminder of the mission Jesus left for us.

What’s inspiring you today?

Verdict, Schmerdict

16 Jul

Great thoughts from a great man on recent events. Let’s not join the circus.

Mark Nicklas

Who was Trayvon Martin? A sweet Florida kid who got hunted down? A drugged-up hoodlum?  Obama’s imaginary son? A neighborhood troublemaker? A victim? An attacker? A good kid?  A bad man? Go ahead and make your choice, because all of these choices are out there depending on your source of information.  Does it even matter?  Who does he need to be?  Pour whatever traits your position needs into this guy until he is unrecognizable. Trayvon, Schmayvon; he’s becoming a poster child for whatever fear a particular group is peddling. But who was he?

Who is George Zimmerman? A mild mannered do-gooder caught in an attempt to do the right thing? A bigoted killer seizing on his opportunity to strike out against a kid armed with skittles? A mentor of fatherless black children? A thwarted rapist? A bad white man? A good Hispanic man? Again, you can choose from the…

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1 Thing

15 Jul

One thing, can it really change anything?

It can, I’m proof.

One little change to a daily routine can send ripples through eternity.

One rock can change the current of a river.

One change can transform a marriage.

One change can bring a family closer.

One change can reveal the power of God.

One change can unlock the mysteries of heaven.

One change can radically alter the outcome of a life.

One change can redirect an army.

One change can turn the tide in a war.

One change can lead you down a different path.

One change can save a life.


What is this one change?


It started with a slumber.

The end effect was rage.

A lie had held us captive and screamed, you can never change!

The odds seemed overwhelming.

The list was far to long.

But HOPE was ever stirring, and LOVE had come with dawn.

Like a raindrop in an ocean, a tiny change proposed.

Lives forever altered by one change, this I know.

One change can rejoice heaven.

One change can enrage hell.

One change can change everything, but who can ever tell?



If you liked 1 Thing, check out This Mess.



I Hear Voices

14 Jul

There are many voices rattling around in our heads. Which one’s are you listening too? If you like this post, go check out my post called “The Voice.

Mark Nicklas

At 38,000 feet over the North Sea, I am settling in for the long flight back to Portland from Amsterdam.  I want to talk about voices.  I don’t think I am unusual in saying that I hear voices.  The fact is, I’ve always heard voices – lots of them.  The churning of thoughts and ideas within is a cacophony of words.   They come from outside, from inside and from somewhere else.  There is a steady stream of them competing for my attention, often coming from points of confusion no different than my own.

voicesThe first voice I can remember is the voice of my mother.  She said amazing things to me; “you’re so good, you’re so handsome, you’re so wonderful…” There are times when I have failed or disappointed someone terribly and I really need to hear that voice.  Sometimes I will pick up the phone to hear it.  Other…

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12 Jul


Today I’m going to live.
Today I’m going to do something I don’t usually do just to do it.
Today when I go to the sushi place, I’m not going to order the teriyaki bowl-you know, because I hate sushi, but I’m ordering sushi.
Today I’m going to gag.
Today I’m going to look people in the eyes as I walk down the street.
Today I’m going to believe the best.
Today I’m going to fail and believe the worst.
Today I’m going to believe the best again.
Today I’m going to laugh.
Today in going to make fun of something I shouldn’t.
Today I’m going to feel bad I made fun of something I shouldn’t.
Today I’m going to wish I wouldn’t of posted that thing on Facebook.
Today when that guy at Walmart tells me how horrible his life is, I’m going to ask him if I can pray for him.
Today I’m actually going to pray for him.
Today I’m going to hope-the bible kind of hope.
Today I’m going to believe God CAN.

What are you doing today?

I actually ordered this!


Okay, I lied. I ordered this.


The proof I ate it.



Five Reason Why I’m Not A Vegetarian

12 Jul

1 year later and my resolve to be a carnivore is stronger than ever.



While out shopping today I was struck with an odd thought. Chalk it up to the fact that I’m currently getting my oil changed and that kind I boredom can spark interesting thoughts a you wait for the pushy salesman to come back and tell you of all the other fluids your car needs. Along with wipers, a vacuum, and a radiator flush. So what’s the random thought you ask? I’m betting the suspense is killing you. Well, here it is, How in the world do people go with out meat? So, I came up with five reasons why I’m not a vegetarian. I could come up with more no doubt, but five sounded trendy and cool.

1. Costco-Have you been to Costco lately? Being a vegetarian at Costco must be the most depressing thing EVER! It’s like going to Diary Queen and deciding to just get a water. Going…

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This Mess

11 Jul


My life’s a mess.
I woke up this morning and stepped on a pile of books.
I stumbled into the bathroom to take a shower, but had to remove a million toys from the tub.
A rubber ducky leaked on my leg.
I poured a bowl of granola, sat at the table, and felt something between my toes.
I wiped my brow in relief, it was only some black beans. It could have been much worse.
As I sat there crunching away I couldn’t help but smile as I thought about this beautiful mess called my life.
I smiled at the thought of Addie pouring oatmeal on her head as she learns how to use her spoon.
I thought about Ellie running out of the bathroom naked and sopping wet as she says, “I want Daddy.”
I thought about my beautiful wife who is adventuress enough to take a toddler and an infant camping, and then willing to document our disheveled self for all to see.
My life’s a mess.
Today, I’m embracing it.

You can embrace the mess today.
God’s willing to embrace you.
Regardless of your mess.

I won’t even tell you what my car looked like….

The Voice

10 Jul

ImageWhen was the last time you heard God speak to you?  Have you ever heard God Speak to you?  I have no doubt you have, but perhaps you didn’t know it.  It takes a trained ear to hear this voice, and unfortunately we have trained ourselves to dismiss it.It’s a voice that resonates in our soul.  It seems to come so swiftly and soft that it is like the whisper of the wind, and if our soul and spiritual ear is not ready, it will pass in a moment.

 The Word continually points us to this voice that speaks from heaven ever so gently.  It is the same voice that told Abraham to leave the comfortable life he knew so well, and to follow Him into a desert place.  The voice didn’t tell him where he would end up, only that he must go.  It’s the same voice that whispered to Elijah in the desert.  It spoke to Jeremiah when he was shut up in the court of the prison.  The voice has been speaking since the dawn of mankind, and it is still speaking today.

Have you ever heard this voice?

 It is the voice that led Jesus into the wilderness to be tempted for 40 days, and it is the voice that strengthened him in his weakness.  It called fishermen to come and follow, and tax collectors to forsake their gain.  The voice knocked Saul of his horse, and led Stephen to his death.  It calmed storms, and outraged authorities.

Have you ever heard this voice?

            Make no mistake about it, the voice of God is not safe.  It led Daniel to the lions den, and Jeremiah to a pit.  It exalted Saul to the thrown, and led David into caves. It is the voice that told Peter to step out of the boat in a raging storm.  It’s not concerned with comfort, or popularity.  It’s doesn’t abide excuses, yet is gentle in its dealings.  It exposes every weakness and fear, yet empowers, and comforts.  The voice is never convenient, but always expedient.  It is eternal, and not earthly.

            Have you ever heard this voice?

            The voice thunders in a whisper.  It commands respect, but speaks as a friend.  It can be ignored, and even rationalized, but never silenced.  It is the voice that spoke the world into being, and brought breath to our lungs.  How is it that we have become content in not hearing this voice?

            Are we afraid to hear the voice?  It is true that this voice will lead you to the unknown, but will never leave you on the journey.  It will call you places you never wanted to go, but change your heart along the way.  The voice is unpredictable, and sometimes seemingly unfair, but always just.  It doesn’t give explanations, but when obeyed, it always gives peace.

              The voice will no doubt make us tremble at it hearing, but man was made to hear this voice.  It prods us in the night hours, and whispers to us in the morning.  It waits patiently for us to listen, but is often lost amidst the noise that fills our days. It is the voice of the bridegroom calling to his bride, and the father to his children.  The voice serenades us when we’re sleeping, and rejoices when we wake.  If only we’ll stop and listen, surely we’ll hear the voice.

              “A four year old girl was overheard whispering into her newborn baby brother’s ear, “Baby,” she whispers, “tell me what God sounds like. I am starting to forget.”  The voice will captivate your heart.  The only question that remains, is will you let it?

Warrior God

10 Jul


Have you ever been hit with one of those reflective moments? A moment where you are brought face to face with the real you. No facades or pretenses about your faith, or like in this case, lack of. Just a raw moment of reality in which you see for yet a brief second how infinitely small you are.

For the last few weeks my wife and I have had a revival of prayer that has been sparked in our hearts. It all started with a little list on the fridge. Prayer used to be something I really gravitated towards. I say “used too” because for years my prayers were few and dead. It’s not that I didn’t pray, but I can say I didn’t war.

As in paced the floor in our condo tonight in little Anchorage, Alaska, I’ve been reminded of the power in spiritual warfare. Spiritual warfare feeds the soul like nothing else. It joins us with Gods heart, if not for a moment at least, and aligns us with his desires.

When was the last time you warred in prayer?

Tonight, I’m convinced nothing will draw us as close to God as when we fight the fights He’s fighting. Tonight He’s reminded this wayward warrior that He meets us in prayer.

It’s in these moments of clarity, where Gods presence is so tangible, and his voice is so unobstructed, that I wonder…..

What kept me away?

What’s keeping you away?

The LORD is a warrior; The LORD is His name. Exodus 15:3

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