Last night…


The day after the 242nd birthday of the United States of America!

Last night I watched the “Red rockets red glare” and the “Bombs bursting in air”.
They “gave proof through the night, that our flag was still there”…
Two hundred and forty-two years later!

Last night I sang the “Star Spangled Banner” for the one millionth time…
I got chill bumps while singing, like I do EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

A friend of mine shared this remembrance of her dad singing the Star Spangled Banner rather loudly at some event:
When I was young I would say “Dad, that’s embarrassing when you sing it that loud”.
And he’d say “it’s embarrassing when you don’t “.

Last night, as I watched the fireworks my heart was moved to tears of joy as my mind drifted into imagining every community which has watched fireworks over the last 242 years celebrating our independence and freedom.

From the town squares in Georgia to the circle in Orange, California.
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Lady Liberty

iWitness_July_Cover_for_KindleJuly 4th – An excerpt from my devotional book – “iWitness July” 

Lady Liberty

Back in the late 70’s… (the fact that we can remember back that far makes this story suspect from the start. Yet, I promise it is true to life as was told to me by my good friend Brian.)
My friend Brian made some type of All-American marching band. Their trip was a European tour which included a few stops behind the “Iron Curtain.”

Please remember that this was during the height of the Cold War between the Americans and the Russians.

While the band was marching their way through Czechoslovakia, Brian met a girl… a Christian girl. The girl told Brian how when she and her Christian friends wanted to meet for Bible study they had to be very secretive about it and would meet late at night under the cover of darkness and candlelight. At best, she confided, they could meet maybe once a week at different homes so as to keep their meetings at the highest level of secrecy.

After listening to her testimony, Brian in a rather nonchalant manner went on to tell her in the United States you could have Bible studies whenever and wherever you wanted with full publicity and without any level of secrecy.

The girl’s response haunts me to this day, “Wow… I bet you have Bible studies every day!!”

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The Chain


Thursday’s Thoughts from Pastor David

The Chain

When was the last time you went to the circus?
Was it a three ringer?
Barnum and Bailey?
Lions, tigers and bears? Oh my!
Tent with a center pole?Have you ever noticed the elephants?
These beautiful creatures stand so tall, with such pride as their ears flap and their trunks trumpet!

Weighing anywhere from 6,000 to 13,000 pounds, their mere presence dwarfs all those who dare to draw near.

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Room for one more?


Full ElevatorOne of my favorite experiments in life is riding an elevator.

I love pushing the up or down button.

The anticipation of waiting to see which elevator door is going to open from the bank of elevators is almost too much to handle sometimes.

The “ding” that my elevator has arrived only builds my anticipation.



The doors slowly start to open as I have quickly positioned myself front and center…

The doors part, my mind starts to race, my palms sweat, my pupils dilate to saucer like size,

Who is going to be on the elevator?
How many people will be crammed into the elevator?

What faces are about to greet me when the doors fully retreat into the side pockets?
Will there be room for me? Or will I have to wait for another elevator?

Just as a quick aside, I am always a little disappointed when the elevator car is empty.

Now comes the fun part!
Whether I am riding up or riding down, I always wonder how many stops will the elevator make before I get to my desired floor.

Once again the anticipation begins to build as the momentum of the moving elevator starts to slow to a stop.

The whole anticipation cycle repeats itself!!

The doors once again begin their slow retreat to the side pockets.

And yes, there they are!
The people who are waiting for the elevator are standing there front and center experiencing exactly the same thing I experienced just a minute or so before.

This is my favorite phrase while on the inside of the elevator with the doors open wide and people standing across the threshold…

“Come on in! There’s always room for one more!”

It never occurs to me to evaluate the race of the people, the morality of the people, how good or bad looking the people might be, the gender, the sexuality, the economic disposition, the accomplishments or the achievements of those who wait to enter…

I simply say, “Come on in! There’s always room for one more!”

I always say that! No matter how many people are in the elevator!

And guess what?

There always is…

My hope is the same can be said of our church and for our world and for you…

Laugh often and Fear not!

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. (John 13: 34)


Eagle Soaring


The year was 1979 and a high school friend of mine was selected to be a part of an All-American band. He was very excited as this band would be touring Europe and even going behind the “Iron Curtain” to visit some of the eastern bloc countries.

While visiting Czechoslovakia he struck up a conversation with a 17 year old girl. In hushed tones the conversation soon turned to the subject of Christianity.

With eyes dotting to and fro for secrecy’s sake this girl told my friend that in order to have a bible study, she and her friends had to be very quiet about getting together. There could be no announcements. No pamphlets. No flyers. Just word of mouth, very tight lipped word of mouth.

She looked to my friend with inquisitive eyes, “What about America? What’s it like to have a Bible study there?”

My friend went on to explain that there was no need for secrecy. Make as many fliers as you want. Publish the pamphlets and tell as many people as you want that you are having a Bible study. There were no constrictions on such activity in the United States of America.

In the moment that it took for all of this mind boggling information to sink into the mind of this 17 year old girl from Czechoslovakia, her mouth went agape and her eyes widened to the size of saucers as she excitedly and loudly concluded back to my friend, “Wow! You must have Bible studies every day!!”

Every July 4th I am haunted by this story. How much we take our liberty, our freedom for granted here in these United States of America.

I have always wondered since the Czech Republic freed itself from the Iron Curtain if this young girl’s passion for Bible study has remained fervent in the freedom that is now afforded to her and her friends…


“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” Galatians 5: 1

Laugh often and Fear not!