Thursday, September 21, 2017

Young evangelical Christian is killed by Muslim teens beause he drank from the same cup that they did.

Hebrews13:3 Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated,since you yourselves also are in the body.

 The Hebrew Christians at this point had been severely persecuted, which included losing their homes and being imprisoned. We see from Hebrews 13:2,3 that the pastor, missionary,Timothy had been imprisoned because of the gospel. The text says, "Take notice that our brother Timothy has been released, with whom, if he comes soon. I will see you." (NASB Hebrews 13:23)

The writer of Hebrews has already in chapter 11 spoke of men and women of old who suffered greatly.  He says in Hebrews 11:36, "and others  experienced mockings and scourgings,yes, also chains and imprisonment (NASB).  Another good example of mockings and scourgings and imprisonment can be found in the book of Jeremiah. Time does not permit an exposition of this book. If you read it on your own, be sure to include Lamentations, which is also written by Jeremiah.

Because of the Internet, today, we more than ever have opportunity to be obedient to the command of Hebrews 13:3. 

The first part of the  passage says,   "Remember the prisoners". We must not forget them but seek to find out who is suffering, why there are suffering ,and where they are suffering.  We should  realize that it is necessary to  pray for every aspect of their lives. 

Not only this, but according to Hebrews 13:3, our remembrance in prayer is fueled by a heartfelt empathy, remembering them as though we are in prison with them. We are to picture in our minds what this suffering involves. This will help create empathy. What would you do if you could not shower, if there was sewage flowing openly in the prison, or if you were tortured daily.?  How would you feel? You and I must realize that our persecuted,  fellow Christians,  belong to the body of Christ. We should rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep (Please see Romans 12:14-15). We should ask the Holy Spirit to help us care.

 Prayer Requests
The family of Sharoon Masih, murdered by his classmates, because he was a Christian. 

 A Christian teenager was beaten to death by classmates recently after being accused of drinking from the same glass as a Muslim. Sharoon Masih, 17, had begun classes at the exclusive MC Model Boys Government School Burewala in Punjab only three days before his murder. A Christian teenager was beaten to death by classmates recently after being accused of drinking from the same glass as a Muslim. Sharoon Masih, 17, had begun classes at the exclusive MC Model Boys Government School Burewala in Punjab only three days before his murder. He had been admitted to the school based on superior academic performance at his village school and was the only Christian in his class. A teacher in the room at the time of the attack said he didn’t notice the incident because he was reading a newspaper. Sharoon’s grandmother, who attends a church led by a VOM partner, said the family intends to ask the courts for justice. “Today is our son, tomorrow will be other sons and daughters,” she said. Pray for Sharoon’s family as they mourn their son’s death. Pray for all Christian children in Pakistan who face harassment at school and in their village.
For more prayer requests, please go to:

Monday, September 11, 2017

The Day that LIndsay and Emily Hope Died.

Happiness does not always last.

I was so happy when my wife Robyn and I had our second child,  Lindsay. She was somewhat fearful but also loved to laugh. She was a very law abiding citizen and never really hurt anyone. I remember taking her and her older brother to the movie Saving Private Ryan. I wanted to show them how our "forefathers" lived and died for our freedom. At one point Lindsay leaned over and said, "Now what war  this Dad?" She was never great at history. But she was a thankful young lady.Image result for marriage ring


.Lindsay was married  July 10,2001.  It was a great ceremony and the Lord was glorified. She and her husband decided to name their baby, "Emily Hope." They like many parents felt that God would use their baby some day. The name meant to Robyn and me that a great future for their family would be filled with faith, hope and love. But we never expected that  in the near future, a day would end in great violence and could be likened to the "fog of war."

 Helpful Scriptures On Suffering

It was beyond our human comprehension how God would make something good out of this tragedy. But we did know what the Bible said, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren" ( NASB, Romans 8:28-29).

He is the great God of Heaven and earth.

 The Psalmist said, "Not to us, O LORD, not to us, But to Your name give glory; because of Your loving kindness, because of Your truth.Why should the nations say, Where, now, is their God?" But our God is in the heavens; He does whatever  He pleases" NASB) (Psalm 115:1-3,).

Two More on  September 11,2001  

On September 11, 2001, our nineteen year old Lindsay was excited to go to church and pray for our nation.  On the way home from church, she smiled and pulled ahead of us. A little after that she was hit on the driver's side of her car,  she and her baby,who was fully formed in her womb, died almost instantly. The man that hit her was shooting up heroin and was smoking crack.

She and Emily were like roses trampled on the ground by terrorists at home

 That night, when chief of the police said, "your daughter has passed;"I felt like  someone had stuck  his hand in my heart and pulled it out and threw it to the ground.In my opinion, there is no such thing as closure (except in Heaven). Today as every anniversary day of their deaths, her three brothers and Robyn and I still experience the loss of those we miss and lost.

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An Angelic Escort

I believe with all of my heart and mind that the moment Lindsay and Emily died, they had an angelic escort carry them to heaven.  Earlier in her life she had trusted the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. We know though our sorrow is great, we have a hope of reunion. Remember that I said that Lindsay was fearful? She must have been amazed when  the angels who probably stood by the accident and worshiped the Lord  for all his ways and works, took her and Emily in his arms and carried them straight to heaven.

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Have you been confused about the losses in your life?
We are in the process of writing a book on the great losses of life.  We know the subject, we lived it. Please pray for us that we would do a good job of presenting Biblical grief!
We have already written a book that I had been slow in writing.  Losing Lindsay and Emily was a reminder to Robyn and me that our lives are like a vapor, a breath.

  Our book (Kregel Publications).
.Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It" is dedicated to Lindsay and her baby Emily.

In this ground breaking book we tell our story about Robyn and I dealing with the mighty blows of major depression.  But it is also an explanation of what the church needs to know about depression, so they can  help the believers in Christ that are suffering this painful malady.

Don't let the copyright fool you.  We wrote this book with "staying power." It is just as relevant today as it  was  in  2005,If you would like to order this book you can find it in both book and digital formats. All you need to do is to go to:

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Is Mental Illness Universal?

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More understanding of medical science as it relates to the brain has filtered into our churches. But there remains a prevalent attitude among many leaders to “cordon off” mental illness. It is separated from other physical illnesses. Many of those who treat those with mental illness in the Christian community use their counseling experience and superficial biblical proof texting to justify their position. Usually they attribute mental illness to some spiritual or emotional defect in the ill person. Some Christian counselors, psychiatrists, and psychologists confuse the issue because they apply a faulty hermeneutic to Scripture .Some use anecdotal evidence to deny the universality of mental illness. They believe the whole idea of mental illness is American or Western or limited in some other way by culture. According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), which gathers health trends of all sorts around the globe.

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Mental disorders are not the exclusive preserve of any special group; they are universal. They are present in women and men at all stages of the life course. Mental and behavioral disorders are found in people of all regions, all countries, and all societies. They are present among the rich and among people living in urban and rural areas. The notion that mental disorders are problems of industrialized and relatively richer parts of the world is simply wrong. ( World Health Organization, The World Health Report 2001: Mental Health: New Understanding, New Hope (Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization, 2001), ch. 2, section 3.

From the preface of Broken Minds Hope for Healing
When You Feel Like You're Losing It. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications,( page 277)..

For our website


Thursday, August 31, 2017

Memory Problems - "I lost my glasses," "they are on your head!"

Image result for parking lot, which car is it.

I heard of a father who was visiting one of his adult children. He was asked by the child to go out and get something out of his son's  car.  The father went to a similar car of the same color and make. The son later asked his  Mother, "Does Dad have Alzheimer's? "

The above problems does not mean that the  Dad had Alzheimer's disease. Everyone is afraid of that disease because it is one of the worse kind of mental illnesses (known to man. (Please note that I believe it is a mental illness because it  affects mind, mood and behavior. ).   But it does mean that if a person is over fifty, they will start to have some memory problems.  Here sre some ways to improve your memory. Many of you that belong to the Millennial Population, and those of the EZ generation should find this article helpful.

Improving Memory Articles
We all have  our.moments of forgetfulness about where we put the keys, why we walked into a room, or what an object is called. Most likely, this reflects age-related changes in thinking skills. "In terms of brain function, everyone has a decline over time in all areas, with the exception of vocabulary," says Dr. Joel Salinas, a neurologist specializing in behavioral neurology and neuro-psychiatry at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.

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 Brain changes from aging affects memory
Forgetting things from time to time is probably related to either brain changes that come from aging or from underlying conditions. Treating underlying conditions can help boost memory. Other strategies can help, too.
   How memory works  
Memory involves three processes: encoding, recording, and retrieval. The brain receives and encodes (takes in) new information; the brain then records (stores) the information; finally, the brain retrieves information when you need it.
Many brain regions are involved in this process. For example, the cerebral cortex — the large outer layer of the brain — acquires new information as input from our senses. The amygdala tags information as being worthy of storage. Nearby, the hippocampus stores memories. And the frontal lobes help us consciously retrieve information.

The aging memory

Many people notice a difference in memory starting in their 50s. That's when age-related chemical and structural changes can begin in brain regions involved with memory processing, such as the hippocampus or the frontal lobes. These changes may slow processing speed, making it hard to recall familiar names or words.
Working memory

Other factors may be at play as well. "Working memory — a mental scratch pad that allows us to use important information throughout the day — is susceptible to depression, anxiety, and stress," explains Dr. Salinas, "and a lack of sleep can affect the brain's retention and use of information."
A medication side effect may also affect memory. For example, if you use an anti-anxiety drug like clonazepam (Klonopin), its sedating side effects can make your brain less alert and more sluggish. This in turn makes it more challenging for your brain to carry out the essential encoding, recording, and retrieval steps of memory.

Dr. Salinas says addressing these problems first often helps improve memory.






Memory tricks

Another way to boost memory is to make the most of the way it works. The following strategies may help.

1. Repeat what you hear out loud, such as someone's name, or an address, or a new idea. Repetition increases the likelihood you'll record the information and be able to retrieve it later. "With each repetition, your brain has another opportunity to encode the information," explains Dr. Salinas. "The connections between brain cells are reinforced, much like blazing a trail in the woods. The more you walk the same trail, the easier it is to walk it the next time."

2. Make a note of people you need to call, errands to run, and appointments. "We are much better at recognition than recall," Dr. Salinas explains. "With recognition, such as reading a list, you have additional hooks or hints that help you find the information you're looking for."

3. Make associations between old and new information. Connect a person's first name to something familiar. For example, if the person's name is Sandy, imagine that person on a beach. Or create a story around a shopping list. "Our brain is good at sequences, and putting things into a story helps. The more ridiculous, the more memorable it is. For example, if your list is milk, eggs, and bread, the story could be that you are having milk with Elvis over an egg sandwich," Dr. Salinas suggests.

4. Divide information into chunks, such as taking a long number and remembering it more like a phone number. "It's hard to store a long number," says Dr. Salinas, "but easier to store little bits through working memory." If you're trying to memorize a speech for a wedding toast, focus on getting only one sentence or idea down at a time, not the whole speech in one take. 

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