Pray for Those who Wrong You: Insights

The tongue is a slippery tool of the heart.  The humble heart uses the tongue for blessing.  The proud heart uses the tongue for cursing.  It’s the same tongue, yet controlled by the heart.  James does a brilliant job of addressing the tongue in James 3:1-12.

As I was reading through Scripture a couple months ago, my eyes jumped out looking at Job 42. Continue reading


MSG: Train Your Replacements: How to Disciple Worship 1 Timothy 2:8-10

 I’ve worshiped in many countries and there are many differences.  In Manilla, Philippines, people dressed up for “hot” and played contemporary music. In Milan, Italy, people dressed up in suits and dresses as well as casual, and played guitars and keyboards. In Belarussia, I learned that the pastor does not seek a verbal response from the people and they had a simple hymns with keyboard. In Uzbekistan, there was a formality to the church service and people approached the communion table along two aisles, one for grape juice and one for real wine. In Marseilles, France it was just like Grace, but in French. Continue reading

MSG: Train Your Replacement: Warrior Prayer 1 Tim. 2:1-2

This was presented on November 24, 2013 as part of the 1 Timothy series.

What is the first thing you teach your disciple? The question might be easier if I asked, “What do you teach a child?” You obviously wouldn’t teach your six month old to drive a car, balance his checkbook, begin potty training, or even to walk. He is barely able to stand while you are holding him. Continue reading

Stages: Spiritual Parent: Prayer is my life

By the time a Christian grows spiritually to be a spiritual parent, he (or she) sees prayer as his life. Prayer is not something he has to schedule.  He is constantly talking to God in his quiet time, getting ready for the day, or driving to work. He is praying for work projects and people in his periphery, kids at home in their spiritual growth and school projects and discipleship relationships of other men (or women), who are hungry and hunting in God’s adventure for spiritual victories. Continue reading

Stages: Spiritual Young Adult: Why do we pray?

When I was sixteen, I had a job and was driving my parent’s car.  I was pretty important stuff, I thought. I felt pretty confident and decided I had grown up enough, so I asked my mother, “Is it okay if I start calling you Phyllis?”  I’ll never forget her response. She said, “Bryan, you will always call me mom or mother, nothing else.” It was pretty clear I had crossed the line. I got the picture. She was still my authority. I still call her mom, although out of respect and honor, not as my authority.

Sometimes spiritual young adults get full of themselves and begin to think they have spirituality by the tail.  Continue reading

Stages: Spiritual Child: How do you pray?

As an infant grows up to be a child, one of the great things he enjoys is learning to play with friends. Children learn to play house, mom and dad, doctor, cops and robbers and teacher. That means they are communicating with their friends and peers.  Sometimes, they do not know how to speak with adults, because they do not know how to relate with adults.  It is difficult to both show respect in humility as well as communicate confidently, because that child/adult relationship is abstract and takes a while to understand. Consequently a child spends much of his time learning by exhortation from his parents how to relate to peers and adults.

The same is true for spiritual children, especially related to prayer.  Continue reading

Stages: Spiritual Infant: What is Prayer?

Communication is the most important ingredient in relationships.  How do you help a baby communicate? They really don’t know how to communicate verbally. Babies, or infants only communicate what they need through crying and satisfaction through sleeping or slowly how to smile.  Verbal communication is difficult for infants, because every word has to be learned. The same is  true for communication with spiritual infants. Continue reading

Book Review: Pray & Watch by Neal and Judy Brower

Pray and Watch by Neal and Judy Brower is not a new program on prayer.  It is a great book on a lifestyle change.  Fortunately, this lifestyle change is not something that only a few theologically astute can achieve. It is not a concept that only the disciplined dozen will grasp. It is not a concept that only the courageously committed company of those who have walked on terra-firma for fifty or more years can comprehend, but anyone.  Continue reading