Fear means everything-unless it doesn’t


Last night at Pitman Camp Meeting, I talked about being in a situation very similar to this. It was in September of 1984 in Ft. Sill Oklahoma. We were nearing the end of boot camp and I found myself standing atop a 40 foot wall. There was good way to get off the wall. If I tried to go off the wall the way I came up, I would have to deal with a drill sergeant. If I went over the wall like they wanted me to, I would be rappelling down a wall with my life in the hands of another recruit who was on belay at the bottom.

Did I mention my overpowering fear of heights?

I decided to rappel down the wall and I am so glad that I did. It did not conquer my fear of heights but what it did do was help me see that fear is not the ultimate decision maker in my life. I can overcome fear.

Fear would not stop me from moving to California a few years later. Fear would not stop me from moving back to New Jersey after that. Fear would not stop me from pursuing a career as a computer programmer. Fear would not stop me from proposing to Ginny. Fear would not stop me from saying yeas to the call of God years later.

Fear is real…but it does not get the last word if we don’t let it. I chose to not let fear have the last words all those years ago and I have decided to let the last word belong to God instead. It seems a much better bet.

“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” (1 John 3:1)

So who get’s the last word in your life?


Coffeebreak time, coffee optional



It seems funny perhaps to think about a coffee break after only being home from vacation for about a week. Yet as I sit in my office this morning that is exactly what is on my mind. Whether it is the aroma of a pound of coffee beans sitting on my desk (yum!) or the empty cup of coffee sitting right beside it, I am not certain. However, what I am certain of is this is something that we need to take seriously. Why? Because God says so.

Now sure, God doesn’t use the term coffee break at all he uses another word; Sabbath.  I have a limited amount of Greek and Hebrew training from seminary but the little that I do remember points me in this direction:

Sabbath = Coffee break

We need rest and we need  time to rejuvenate. This time apart is mandated by God not because he needs it but because we do. We need this time to remember what God has done and is continuing to do. We need this time to reconnect with family and friends. We need this time to reconnect with ourselves. 

 So whether you start your coffee break with a cup of coffee or not, you need to find time to start.  We need to remember that God was doing this creation and kingdom stuff long before we got here and was doing just fine. God will continue long after we are gone. The question is will be a part of what God has already deemed “very good” or will we work ourselves to death.

Take time and smell the coffee.