Who Gets The Buick?

Tom just left his classic red Buick Electra convertible. Actually, when he died he left everything … and so will you! “Are you ready to die today?” That’s the question that often grips me every morning. As Solomon said in Ecclesiastes 7:4, “A wise person thinks a lot about death.” David Gibson authored a book, Living Life Backward – How Ecclesiastes Teaches Us To Live in Light of the End.  He wrote, “If you knew that death would happen tomorrow, how would you live today? That is the point of Ecclesiastes.” And isn’t that the point for us all. The truth is that no one of us […]

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The Picket Fence

I once built a fence with my father-in-law. We lived on a corner lot with three active little kids. So even though money was extremely tight, I scraped enough together to buy the lumber and build a sturdy fence to keep our rambunctious ones in the yard. It took a few days of hard labor, but we completed it together – one board at a time! One board at a time is how both fences and friendships are built. That takes a long time, but sturdy fences and friendships are worth it. As Kenny Rogers once said, “You can’t go […]

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FOMO – Distraction Addiction!

FOMO – “Fear of Missing Out” is a serious problem for me and a real addiction for many. Years ago our German exchange student, Olli, had a near panic attack one Friday night when he had no party or opportunity to entertain him. We thought it was kind of funny, but Olli wasn’t laughing. He was absolutely convinced that his social life was in a ditch and might never recover! Sadly, feeling overlooked or left out doesn’t end with our teenage years. A pastor friend of mine was lamenting that on the first Easter Sunday after his retirement he and […]

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I’m Experienced!

Every time I celebrate another birthday I’m happy to say that most days I honestly feel 20 years younger – this year I’m saying I feel like I’m 54 with 20 years of experience! It’s been said that no wise man would ever wish to be younger. However, what I know to be true is that inside every old guy is a much younger guy wondering what in the world happened! I’m always delighted to be blessed and teased, in fact, my close friends know that the two are just about the same thing for me. Everyone I know who is older […]

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Off the Wall!

When our church faced a severe financial crisis, some wondered whether our ministry would even survive. Even though we were solidly in the mega-church category at the time, we were engulfed in a mega million dollar difficulty. We had just opened a 20 million dollar extension campus and were also in an expensive legal battle with Boulder County over land use that went all the way to the steps of the Supreme Court. That all happened in 2008 just as the economy cratered, leading us to immediately lay off 40% of our staff and then another 25% the year after. The […]

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Do you own it?

It’s been said that nothing is more dangerous than trafficking in unfelt truth. I know. Early in my ministry I was stressed by vacation prep and borrowed a sermon title and more without giving any credit. After the service the oldest member of our tiny church greeted me at the door and said: “I’ve always appreciated the messages of Peter Marshall.” Ouch! The prophet Jeremiah said, “I am against these prophets who steal from each other and claim they are from me.”  No one has a monopoly on truth, we all need to lean on others. However, those of us who lead and teach typically […]

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Are you thriving or surviving?

True confession, I need my wife more than my wife needs me! Now that’s not so unusual; most honest men would probably admit the same thing, but it’s still a bit embarrassing. Truth be told, if I got hit by the ice cream truck, Linda would be able to manage well without me. By contrast, if she got trampled by a moose on the loose while hiking, I would have a much harder struggle. On a recent hike together I was pondering this point, and then something else occurred to me. While neither one of us needs the other to survive, we do […]

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What’s Your Special Assignment?

We just enjoyed a four-hour visit with an inspiring couple. We count them among our true heroes. As the psalmist said: “The godly people in the land are my true heroes! I take pleasure in them!” (Psalm 16:3 NLT) Those who enjoy “hero status” for us all live with a sense of assignment and have three things in common: Long obedience Deep joy Strong generosity After a great meal our relaxing conversation led to our friend smiling and saying: “I like to make money so that I can give it away!” He, like me, is enjoying the high privilege of […]

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An Antidote to Loneliness for Pastors

Loneliness is a perpetual problem among pastors, and it only has intensified during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to two experts who specialize in care for pastors. “I don’t know of a single pastor whose life has not been put into the crisis continuum on some level [by the pandemic],” said Dr. Wes Beavis, a clinical psychologist and longtime Restoration Movement pastor. “All of them have been personally affected by this.” The pandemic and its fallout in the life and work of the church has added strain and uncertainty to the lives of ministers, revealing areas where they have not cultivated […]

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Are You Good Enough?

When I was younger I often struggled with the question of being good enough, and even now that I’m older the same is sadly sometimes still true. As a skinny, insecure kid growing up in Chicago, I never felt like I quite measured up. I was never good enough to make the high school team, impress all the cute girls or earn straight A’s. Maybe you can relate. But what’s worse is that I never felt like I measured up in the eyes of God either. When I was baptized at the age of eight I wanted forgiveness for not being […]

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