Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Now we see things imperfectly…we will see everything with perfect clarity.” 1 Cor. 13:12

A little over a year ago I went to a gathering at a friends for lunch. He had a football game on his gigantic new HDTV and the clarity was amazing. Never before had I seen so much detail. I had an HDTV but I did not have the HD signal converter so I went to the cable company and got one. I was amazed at how much of a difference seeing shows in HD made for the overall viewing experience. I would switch back and forth from ESPN regular to HD and just be blown away. In fact, I was up recently on Saturday night watching college football highlights and they played clips that were not in HD and it was almost frustrating how poor the quality seemed to me. Funny...that was normal to me a couple of years ago. And when I was a kid, I would be happy to see games in black and white. (Am I that old?)

I Cor. 13 has been described as the love chapter. It seeks to clearly define what love is and what love is not. But even after going into great detail, it say we still "see things imperfectly". I am convinced that it does not matter how much information I get "about" love, until I see Jesus for myself, my life experience is greatly diminished. Life is enhanced through connection to a Pure Source. That connection is Jesus. That Source is God.

An analog signal cannot deliver an HD image. If you are receiving an analog signal into your TV set you are missing a world of detail and definition. It does not even matter if you have a great TV. The source must be digital. God is Love. His Spirit is pure signal. His Son Jesus is an exact representation of God's image. Jesus is God in HD.
John 1:18 (NCV) "No one has ever seen God. But God the only Son is very close to the Father, and he has shown us what God is like."
How's your signal?

Friday, September 19, 2008

Nightmare on?

I'm sure there were plenty of nights where Joseph woke up in a cold sweat having had a bad dream about what his brothers to him when he was a teenager. Maybe he dreamed of the cruel abuses suffered while a slave or the brutal beatings in his early days of imprisonment. All of us have nightmares. But some of us don't have them just while asleep, we live in them throughout the day.

Dreams are our hopes and aspirations for the future. Many do not allow this "future consciousness" to guide them forward because they live in the painful past. The energy required to fuel a God-given dream is consumed living in nightmares gone by. Joseph seemed to have found a way to reject the victim mentality and avoided bitterness against God. But just as significant, he was able to forgive his brothers who had wronged him and reconcile conflict. This allowed for the total fulfillment of his dream-a dream he no doubt did not fully understand until it came true.

I believe many have their dreams significantly diminished if not completely destroyed by unreconciled conflict in their past. Refusal to forgive allows the past to live in the present and blinds me from seeing the hope of my dreams. Many people ruin their health and their hope by taking the poison of bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness. Matthew 18:23-35 tells us that if we do not forgive people, we get turned over to the torturers. If you have a problem in this area or have ever had one, I’m sure you know what I’m saying. It’s torture to have hateful thoughts toward another person rolling around inside your head. What is worse is that those hateful thoughts from the past always turn into hurtful actions in the present sabotaging countless opportunities. Even people you want to love may be suffering from your bitterness, resentment and unforgiveness.

Do not allow the nightmares to live on. Choose to forgive and reconcile when possible. Do not leave behind you a trail of broken relationships-it will eventually catch up with you. Instead listen to the counsel of Jesus: Luke 6:27-28 (NIV) 27 "Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.
These are choices that save our dreams and wake us up from the nightmare. This is how we keep the nightmares of our past from living in our future. Sweet Dreams!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bitterness puts dreams behind us

With all that happened in Joseph's life it would have been easy for him to become bitter against God. Instead of blaming God for all his pain he declared God as the one who "made me forget all my trouble". Instead of accusing God of being the one has robbed him of his dream he said, "God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction." He chose to continue to love and trust God instead of hate Him.

I am sure Joseph had his moments of anger or even possibly dissallusionment with God but somehow he did not allow it to settle into his spirit. Bitterness is the establishing of roots from unresolved anger. There is nothing necissarily wrong with anger. God understands it-even experiences it. But anger will turn sour in our hearts if it is not properly expressed or resolved. It will begin to poison all our relationships and eventually lead us to turn away from God.

If we turn away from God in bitterness our dreams are now behind us. If we face God, especially in our setbacks and failures, our dream remains in front of us. Remember, it is God's Spirit who gives dreams and it is God's Spirit who fulfills them in and through us.

May we embrace God in our difficult journey toward dreams fulfilled. May we love and trust him in the dark places and let no root of bitterness be established in our hearts. Dream On!

Hebrews 12:15 (NLT) 15 Look after each other so that none of you will miss out on the special favor of God. Watch out that no bitter root of unbelief rises up among you, for whenever it springs up, many are corrupted by its poison.

Monday, September 15, 2008

victims don't fulfill dreams

Just sitting here this morning thinking about Joseph's fulfilled dream and realizing just how much he had in his past that he was able to move on from and let it stay in the past. If his future was a dream, then his past was a nightmare. Abuse, abandonment, betrayal, false accusation, you name it. He seems to have had an amazing ability to survive, heal, and dream on.

Without minimizing any one's past, it is significant to note that many want to use the hurts of years gone by to excuse themselves from the future. They no longer dream and work hard to pursue it. They rehearse and nurse old wounds, medicate pain and maximize comfort. Not Joseph, he overcame and became the person he dreamed he would.

How did he do that? A lot could be said, but one thing is for sure, he resisted having a victim mentality. Never feel sorry for yourself!! The past may be filled with emotional pain and you can remain in this pain for your whole life if you choose. It will only cause you to gain many more personal problems, simply because you will be so busy being a constant victim. Unconciously some ruin many opportunities of happiness to keep on being a victim of life, a victim of everything.

Victims spend key relational moments trying to get people to feel sorry for them. They unwittingly sabatogue thier dreams thinking that that others feeling sorry for them is somehow healing balm. In reality it only creates more distance between them and others. People do not have confidence in "victims". Having dreams fulfilled depends so much on the help of others but sympathy or even empathy is not the help that people who live in self pity need.

At some point, with God's help we must decide once and for all to stop feeling sorry for self and adopt an overcomer mindset. We may not even need months of counseling to do this. Some of us simply need to be told that we can think differently, others need to be told to "just do it".

Mindset of Winner: 1. What have I got; 2. Makes thing happen; 3. How can I become; 4. Looks at the positive; 5. Finds ways; 6. Acknowledges responsibility; 7. Takes guidance; 8. Sees always wins ahead; 9. Listens more; 10. Creates goals for him/herself; 11. Learns from mistakes; 12. Forgives; 13. Long distance runner, patient; 14. Favors.

Mindset of Victim: 1. What havent I got; 2. Waits for things to happen; 3. Why cant I?; 4. Focuses on the faults; 5. Finds excuses; 6. blames others; 7. Knows all; 8. Sees always loses ahead; 9. Talks more; 10. Creates obstacles for him/herself; 11. Loses from mistakes; 12. Holds a grudge; 13. Short distance runner, burns out; 14. Blames.

May we not be defeated by living in the painful past. May we embrace a God who heals, strengthens, and fulfills our dreams.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

the person of my dreams

"Sow an act...reap a habit; Sow a habit...reap a character; Sow a character...reap a destiny."

Joseph was 17 when God gave him the dream of having world-wide influence. As a young man he was all too ready to tell others of his dream. He was his Father's favorite son, possibly a bit spoiled over his brothers. He may have even struggled with pride. If this is true, there was a big gap between the boy of big visions and the man who would one day fulfill those dreams.

When I think of the dream God gave Michelle and me 12 years ago, I know realize more and more all that God has to do in me before He will accomplish the dream through me. Joseph certainly discovered the same. It would be 20-30 years before he would see his dream come true. God would totally forge the crucibles of his character through betrayal, slavery, and imprisonment before Joseph would develop the kind of character to be the leader of a powerful nation. His refusal to quit, sowing of seed into the lives of others, risk-taking faith, excellence in work, and ultimate trust in Gog's sovereignty were all choices that "he made and God used" to make him into the person of his dreams.

What about you? Are you the person of your dreams? Are there some new dream choices for you that will lead to dream character? Character is the stuff of dreams.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Aerosmith theology

When I was a kid, a song came out called "Dream On". It is interesting to me how Joseph's story can be found inside the lyrics. Could it be that Steven Tyler of Aerosmith is a secret theologian? I think they look a little bit like Joseph's shady brothers.

Everytime that I look in the mirror
All these lines on my face gettin clearer
The past is gone
It went by like dust to dawn
Isnt that the way
Everybodys got their dues in life to pay

I know what nobody knows
Where it comes and where it goes
I know its everybodys sin
You got to lose to know how to win

Half my life is in books written pages
Live and learn from fools and from sages
You know its true
All the things come back to you

Sing with me, sing for the years
Sing for the laughter, sing for the tears
Sing with me, if its just for today
Maybe tomorrow the good lord will take you away

Dream on, dream on
Dream yourself a dream come true
Dream on, dream on
Dream until your dream come true
Dream on, dream on, dream on...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Ironman 6:30 tonight (Wednesday)

IronMan is back Wednesday @ 6:30 (tonight)
a vision, a code, a cause...

Ironman meets also on 2nd & 4th Wednesdays @ 6:30 AM

Friday, September 05, 2008

If we dream on

Erwin Mcmanus says "Human history is dramatically affected by the dreams we try to live out. The dream of one person can create a different future for so many".

It is truly amazing how even one person who refuses to quit on his dream can bring about a different and better reality for the world.

Joel 2:28-29 (NIV)
28 'And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions.
29 Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days.

What would happen if we began to discover our God-given dreams? What if we began to live out those dreams? What if we chose to dream on until our dreams came true? If we allow God to have our hearts, I believe He will pour into them a vision-His vision of what He sees us doing to make this world a better place.

As we look at the life of Joseph, we will learn a lot about what it takes to dream on. We will learn that God does gives dreams. We will learn that dreams actually come true. And we will learn how God makes it happen. DREAM ON!

New Series Begins...

Thursday, September 04, 2008


It's been said that you are as young as your dreams and as old as your cynicism. It's easy to stop dreaming when life punches you in the stomach. How do we keep dreaming through life's challenges? The story of Joseph shows us how to dream through rejection, betrayal, and long delays. His fulfilled dream inspires us to "Dream On" until our God-given dream comes true.Join us for

Dream On

Runs through September