30 June 2011

God's Promises


Eastport, Maine
June 29, 2011

 Once again it is time for the sun to set over the horizon, but since the fog has already settled over Eastport it is impossible to catch a glimpse of the sun’s golden rays. The frogs are happily singing now as I sit in my little motel room, thinking back over my day. A quiet peace has stilled my heart; a peace that only comes from God.

I spent my evening walking out by the water on the rocks, thinking about so many different things. Sometimes I feel like a fog rolls over my soul just like the fog that settled over the rocky cove; a fog that does not hide the beauty of the sun’s rays but the beauty of God’s promises. But just because I cannot see and feel God’s promises does not mean they do not strengthen me and attend me each moment as I journey heavenward. So as I sat on one of the giant rocks looking out over the bay, God reminded me once again of His great and precious promises: I AM WITH YOU, MY GRACE IS SUFFICIENT FOR YOU, MY COMPASSIONS ARE NEW EVERY MORNING, I WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU NOR FORSAKE YOU, I HAVE HIDDEN YOU UNDER MY WINGS, I AM YOUR REFUGE AND STRENGTH, MY NAME IS A STRONG TOWER, I AM YOUR SAVIOR, I AM YOUR REDEEMER, MY LOVE IS BETTER THAN LIFE, I WILL NOT LET YOU FALL, I WILL DIRECT YOUR PATH, I WILL FILL YOU WITH JOY, I AM ALL THAT YOU NEED……….

And as I sat there out upon the rocks thinking upon God’s promises my heart was renewed and it was like I was given new strength. The Lord is faithful and I praise Him for I can not stand a moment apart from His grace. He fills my heart with joy and makes my soul sing with glad songs…songs of praise to my God! So I think and dwell and meditate upon the promises of God for they give me strength and joy to press on hard after Jesus. I am sustained by God’s grace, and each moment becomes more sweet than the next because each moment Jesus is with me as I walk this narrow path.

So I am here in Eastport, Maine now in a new place that is filled with new people and challenges and adventures. I face all of these things in the strength that God supplies and I face them as I stand firm in the promises God has given through His Word. I am here to honor and glorify my Lord and Savior and that is what I will do by God’s grace. May I be spent, may I be broken, may I be completely used up for the glory of my Lord who I love with all my heart! Jesus is my treasure!!! He is my joy!!! He is my life!!!

29 June 2011

Eastport, Maine

June 29, 2011

I began a new chapter in my life today as I waved goodbye to my family and turned to face my new life in Eastport, Maine. I am confident that it is God who has placed me here as His light in this small fishing community. The town itself is pretty small as it only takes about five minutes to walk from one end to the other. As I write, I am sitting in my small motel room, enjoying a quiet day. The temperatures a slightly colder here, seeing as how I am wearing my winter coat right now in the middle of June!!! I am excited about the new life I have ahead of me for the next two years. I do not know what God has in store, but I commit everything to Him that He may receive all the honor and glory.

I know that God will be teaching me many lessons here, stretching me in my faith, challenging me in my dependence on Him, and preparing me for the work and ministry He has in store for me in the future. This is my ministry now, but I know that God will use this experience to prepare me for new challenges that lay ahead. He will teach me deeper lessons in trust, surrender, humility, patience, and so much more. I know that what He has in store will exceed my wildest imagination, and so I step forth in His strength, ready to take on this new challenge.

I will be reporting into my new duty station on July 1 and also moving into my new and first apartment. I am excited and nervous, but most of all sure and confident that God is with me, leading me forth. I am His sheep and He is my shepherd. He leads me and I follow. And my soul cries out for a deeper walk with Jesus, a deeper love for my Savior, a deeper trust in the Almighty One as I follow Him and learn to trust Him more and more. I am nothing, but Jesus is my all and He sustains me by His grace. I do not walk on from here alone, but with the Shepherd of my soul leading me forth down this path that leads HOME.

04 June 2011

Driving the Small Boats

I wanted to take a moment on this beautiful Saturday that God has blessed me with and write down what I did this week. Now that my class is finished with the classroom portion of our training, we have moved into the hands-on, more practical side of things. This week we have been going out on the 41’ small boats, conducting training. It has been a good challenge for me, getting me out of my comfort zone and learning new things.

I was terrified to drive the boat at first, but after taking the wheel and learning how to control the throttles, it actually turned out to be a blast! Yesterday we got a lot of practice driving the boat up to the pier…it is like learning how to parallel park but harder because you have to take the wind and current into consideration along with everything else. We also did a bunch of man overboard drills. We were learning how to maneuver the boat to be able to pick the person up out of the water.

For lunch each day we moored up to Yorktown pier. On Thursday a daycare class must have been out having a field trip to the beach, and they came over to our boats and were thrilled when we gave all the little three year olds tours of our small boats. The kids loved sitting in the driver’s seat pretending they were driving the boat. It was a lot of fun!

We have three more weeks of school here at Yorktown…then I will be heading to Maine! God supplies me with courage and excitement to serve Him there---way up in the northeast!

28 May 2011

A little Update

It has been a while since I last wrote an update on all the happenings of my life here at school. I am nearing the end of my time here in Yorktown. I will be going into week nine of training, and I only have four more to go. Yesterday I took my final test, which covered everything we had learned thus far...so now I am all done with the classroom portion of my training. Now we will be going out on the small boats putting everything we have been learning about navigation into practice. I am excited that we get to do the practical part of training now…no more long days in the classroom!!!

I received my orders this week to my next duty station. I will be going to Station Eastport, Maine. Eastport is the east-most city of the United States. It is a very small town…the kind of towns where everybody knows what you are doing before you do! I hear it is beautiful country though, and I will be enjoying lots of snow!!! I know this is where God wants me to go. I am a slave of the Lord Jesus and I want to serve Him with all my heart, enthusiastically.

So I pray and commit this new chapter in my life to the Lord and I am excited to see all that God shall do. I am excited to see God’s name glorified. And that is what I want to do---GLORIFY THE LORD!!!

I am so blessed…God continues to strengthen my heart and fill me with joy in Jesus Christ. My life is His and I surrender to His plan joyfully. I love Him with all my heart; He is everything to me! So I press on today in the strength of the Lord, rejoicing in my God and Savior, and so very happy to be the slave of Christ.

19 May 2011

Living In Light of Our LIVING HOPE

Living In Light of Our LIVING HOPE

I read in 1 Peter this evening and I want to share a verse from chapter one: “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a LIVING HOPE through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3). After I read that verse, my heart just wants to explode with joy! I am so amazed by God’s amazing, endless and incomprehensible GRACE!

Every day of my life is transformed by God’s grace, which He has given me because of Jesus Christ. I do not deserve it at all, but He gives it to me anyway. He bestows mercy when all I deserve is wrath; He lavishes His love on me, when all I deserve is His hatred; He blesses me beyond my imagination, when I was His enemy. Jesus Christ has ransomed my soul, and so I sing and rejoice in the Almighty God who is the Living God. He is mighty to save!!! He is my Lord and Savior!!!!

I pray that each day of your life is transformed by God’s grace. Sometimes it is easy to live discouraged, defeated Christian lives because we do not fix our eyes on Jesus and instead focus on our sin or on our problems. If we would but focus our hearts upon Jesus we would be amazed by the joy that will overflow from our lives. He is the spring that alone can satisfy our hearts…so let us come to Him and be satisfied. Let us come to our LIVING HOPE.

08 May 2011

Destroying Our Idols~ #1 Dust Cannot Lie

God has greatly challenged me the past several months to examine my life to see what idols I have set up in my heart. I do not often think of myself as a person who serves idols (that is something that people in the old testament did, not me!), but by God’s grace He has showed me how entrapped I am by the idols in my life. My heart is grieved and filled with such anguish as I stop and see how I actually live and act and invest my time and thoughts; I am no different than the children of Israel when they were in the wilderness, continually wandering away from the one who had rescued them from slavery.

So in the next several blog posts, I want to share with you what God has been teaching me about destroying my idols. I pray that you are convicted of sin and challenged to examine your own life and destroy any and all idols that you may have set up in your own heart.

To begin, I want to first challenge you to dig into God’s Word. Dust cannot lie. How desperately terrible it is when we who call ourselves followers of Christ can write Jesus’ name in the dust that collects on our Bibles. Jesus engraved our names in the palms of His hands by the shedding of His precious blood. He suffered and endured God’s wrath for our sin. He has given us such amazing grace, and in return for His kindness we offer Him a pile of dust that we have allowed to collect on His Word. Instead of investing ourselves knowing God and spending our lives glorifying His awesome name, we serve our idols. We do not want to serve the Jesus of the Bible (of course we would never say those words!). If we actually read our Bibles I think we would come face to face with the fact that the Jesus in the Bible is too dangerous, uncomfortable, unsafe, radical, challenging, and serious for our “Christianized American Dream”. Sure we want to follow Christ---we want to go to heaven---but we do not want to actually take up our instruments of death and follow Him down a narrow, unpopular, and lonely road. We do not want to die to self and give up the things we enjoy on this earth. We would rather linger in the rays of the sun than tremble in joyful awe before the throne of God; we would rather get married and enjoy our dreams than live radically for the one whose love for us was so radical that He endured our hell so we can be with Him; and we would rather live for this world than run hard for eternity.

Jesus must be our treasure and nothing else in this life. If this is not true than we are not true followers of Christ and we are on our way to Hell. Christ demands complete obedience, 100% commitment, and total dedication. There is no such thing as half-hearted Christians; those who consider themselves as such are not Christians at all.

So we must know Jesus and treasure Him with all of our hearts, and to do this we must look into God’s Word and see Him for who He really is---the Almighty Son of God, who is the Creator and sustainer of all things; who made Himself nothing and humbled Himself to the point of death; who drank the Father’s wrath and made atonement for sin; who was raised from the dead on the third day and is exalted at the right hand of God; and who is standing always to make intercession for His own. However, most of us do not look into God’s Word to see who Jesus is, but instead we pear into our mirrors and fashion a Jesus who looks like us, talks like us, thinks like us, and lives like us. So we make Jesus into something He is not but something we can handle and wrap our minds around. Instead of remembering that we were made in God’s image, we want to serve a god who is made in our own image. This is idolatry! Dear Brothers and Sisters if you examine this “Jesus” we have made, we are not worshipping the Lord God, but we are really worshipping ourselves.

O Lovers of Christ, may your hearts be broken as mine is, and may you be filled with great sorrow over your sin. Let us repent and turn back to the Living God, and let us serve Him with all of our hearts.

Let us destroy our idols!

Sara-Grace Waite
Yorktown, VA
May 6, 2011

02 May 2011

A Sobering Reflection

“For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.”


Hebrews 4:12-13

I know life can be very busy at times, but I would beg you to stop for a few moments and take a trip with me today. Trust me, where we are going is not easy, and what we must do when we get there and all along the way is even harder; but be assured, that if you do not take time to come with me now, your soul shall be in very grave danger. So let us go and search the depths of our hearts and souls, and let us cast down our idols and turn wholeheartedly to serving the Living God.

Perhaps you have never seen Bible churches in the United States filled with idols, or Christian homes adorned by false gods, but I have; and what grieves me most is that I am among them. We are people who do not treasure Jesus. We want to make Him fit our needs and our lifestyles so we distort the Truth and exchange it for a lie. We like serving a God of love, we enjoy going to a church with comfortable chairs, good music, and inspirational messages. We need our weekly pep talk, so we come and joke around and fulfill our spiritual duty; but we are not serving Jesus; we are worshipping ourselves.

Awake, O Church, and see that we have erected idols in our hearts: idols of comfort, security, ambition, family, retirement, money, greatness, fame, and so much more. The Word of God means so very little to us and we can see this proven true in the time we invest in it. O God, break our hearts! We have sinned and traded you for the gifts you bestow, for the glory that is your due, and for the trappings of this world. And dare we think that we serve the Living God when we neither put Him first in our lives nor seek Him above all things.

I speak from experience, we gather on Sundays bringing some of our idols with us. There are plenty of other idols of course waiting for us once we arrive at church. We check our face book and email before the service starts, check the clock and figure out how much longer until lunch, eat some snacks and drink a cup of coffee, complain about the weather, talk about sports, and then find our seats before the service starts. Like a movie theater we pick the best place to sit, sink into our comfortable chairs, we pop our knuckles while the announcements are being made, we sing, we pray, we listen or at least try to as we catch ourselves daydreaming about life and the new week ahead of us. We say goodbye, not really remembering what the message was about, but ready to get on with life and get back to what really matters. And that would be a typical morning church service for many people in the United States, including myself.

But I am left empty and haunted by questions: where are the tears, the sorrow for sin, the soul felt worship, the desperate cries for help and strength, the joy in singing to the Living God, the power of the Holy Spirit at work in our midst---where is God? Have we not come to worship Him on His glorious throne? But I do not see Him here; I do not feel His power and presence. However, I do see a throne and seated on the throne is a mirror, and I see myself bowing down before that mirror, investing time and energy appeasing it. I also see upon the throne my laptop with my facebook account open along with my email account and google searches…a reminder of my time spent. I see comfort and security, I see ambition and pride, I see fame and self-recognition, and I see dreams and lusts all piled high upon the throne and still do I wonder where my Lord has gone?

I have not come to church to worship the Living God, but to be entertained; I have not come to humbly bow before the Almighty Creator, but to satisfy my own “felt needs”; I have not come to exalt God, but to glorify myself. How can you tell me that we do not bow down to idols in this country when they are all around us; and every whisper from the world and countless “so called Christians” is to come along with them in their idolatry? Mirrors, facebook, email, food, weather, sports, goals, dreams, etc. are not bad; but neither is wood, gold, bronze, clay, and stones. However when we put them in God’s place and treasure them above our Almighty Savior then we have set them up as idols that we bow down to.

O Lovers of Christ, repent with me, and let us turn from our wicked ways! Let us return to the Savior of our souls, casting down our idols, which are worthless.

O hear this battle cry, all you Soldiers of the Lord! Turn off your TVs, turn off the radio, put your computers away, turn off your cellphones, and open the Word of God. We wonder why God’s Word is not powerful in our lives (as it sits collecting dust on the shelf!), we wonder why we feel so empty (as we fill our lives with empty pursuits!), and we wonder why the God of the Bible seems so different then the God we serve (as we do not even know the God of the Bible!).

If everything was stripped away, would Christ be enough? If all you had to look forward to on Sundays was to study the Bible, would you come? Jesus demands everything from us…if we are to be true followers of Christ we must deny ourselves, take up our crosses, and follow Him. This means dying to self-daily, and putting to death all our fleshly longings and desires. We must give up everything to follow after Jesus. His Word is our life! If this kind of discipleship is not your idea of Christianity then you are not a follower of Christ, and you are going to Hell where you will bear God’s wrath for your sin.

The battle is fierce, but by God’s grace I will fight, and by the power of His Holy Spirit, I beg Him to enable me to cast down the idols I serve and instead cling to the Living God who alone reigns supreme. I have no power in myself, I have no ability to serve God, I am nothing, I am a sinner saved by grace and I stand clothed in Christ’s righteousness. He is my beauty, my all, my treasure, and my joy. Battle, O Faithful Ones, for the faith that has been entrusted to you! Battle with all your might in the power of God!

You will find strength and help in the Word of the Living God, but you must read it and invest your life in knowing Jesus. The Word of God is living and sharper than a two edged sword. Do not come to it as any other book, but as the very Words of God given to us because that is exactly what it is.

Thrust down the idols that are set up in your heart and life and come to God’s Word and be transformed as you renew your minds. Bow in prayer to the Living God and cry out to Him to work in your life and to empower you by the Holy Spirit to live for His glory alone. Persevere in these disciplines and do not give up, but wait upon the Lord and hope in Him. He sees our hearts, and our motives are laid bare before Him. Let us repent, and live wholeheartedly for Jesus.

14 April 2011

Week Two

As I come to the end of week two of my training here in Yorktown, I wanted to write a little update on all the happenings of this past week. God has truly blessed me abundantly, and each new day I struck by the wonderful mercies of my God who has saved me and given me true life. His hand sustains me each new step heavenward.

This week we received all of our Personal Protective Equipment: dry suits, gloves, boots, goggles, mustangs (like a body life vest that’s supposed to keep you warm), etc. This is all of the stuff we’ll need for going out in the small boats, depending on what weather conditions are. Today we tested our dry suits in the pool to make sure they don’t leak. We have been having classes this week on navigation and using charts. So we have been working on coursing and preparing some charts that we will use later on in training.

I have been really enjoyed reading in 1 John this week and learning about God’s great love for sinners. My heart is encouraged in the Lord. I press on this week as His servant to do His bidding. He is my joy, my strength, my song!

05 April 2011

#3 The Lord Encamps Around Those Who Fear Him

April 5, 2011 One more day spent here at Training Center Yorktown, and the Lord truly blessed me with a fun time in training. During my time this morning with the Lord, I was soooooooo encouraged to read a verse from Psalm 34 saying that the Lord encamps around those who fear Him and delivers them. He is with me every moment…I am never alone! And He will deliver me. I may feel a hundred different things: fear, excitement, weakness, stress, pressure, joy, etc; but the Lord is always with me and with Him I shall do valiantly. We started out our training today with some physical training and team/leadership building games at the gym. Then we had more classes on leadership throughout the day. Now it is almost time to head to bed and get some sleep before tomorrow’s physical training test. As I close another day I am left truly amazed by the God whom I serve. He fills my heart with joy and cares so tenderly for His children. So I praise the Lord Jesus Christ for paying my sin penalty, for taking my place at the cross, and for giving me abundant life!! I do not deserve any of this, but this wonderful gift of grace is mine because of Jesus and His great love for sinners. And this is this is the message of good news I have to share. And I want to encourage all of you who also are saved by God’s amazing grace that this is the message God has called all of us to share. God has placed us in this world to encourage fellow Believers heavenward, to share the gospel and be an instrument to lead unbelievers to Christ, and for some we are the only bit of heaven they will ever know…so let us be spent today for what truly matters. Let us give these people in our lives HEAVEN on earth, showing them Christ’s love and kindness. Always remembering that the Lord encamps around those who fear Him and delivers them.

04 April 2011

#2 My Times are n His Hands

April 4, 2011 As I sit here in BM “A” school feeling out of place and overwhelmed from being in a new and strange place, I am greatly comforted and encouraged by God’s unfailing and everlasting Word. In the Psalms it says that our times are in His hands. I can be certain and confident that it is the Lord who has placed me here…not by chance or by accident, but on purpose and for a set purpose. I am His witness---a partaker of the glorious salvation that is in Christ Jesus. At times all seems too difficult and I don’t see how I can go on, but Jesus is walking with me down this path. Yes He has brought me here to this uncomfortable, difficult place where I am to meet Him in the fire, proving that His love is better than life and He is my treasure far greater than anything else in this here…only 12 short weeks.

31 March 2011

The Journals of A Guardian...#1 On the Road Again

March 31, 2011

My family and I left Copperas Cove, Texas this morning and put in some good miles on the road. We arrived in Meridian, Mississippi and enjoyed a meal of pizza and wings. We are making it closer and closer to my training school. I am excited, but also a little nervous. This I know for sure though, God is with me every second of this adventure. I know He will teach me and challenge me in new ways.

So I am excited to take this adventure that He has given me. For such a time as this God has placed me on the earth to be His witness and to gorify His name.

I want to make much of You Jesus!!!! I want to live every moment for You. Take my life...may I be used up for Your glory and fame...may I be wasted completely for You Jesus...broken and spilled out...wholly spent for Your name's sake.

So I am on the road again...taking the adventure God has for me.

30 March 2011

Not Just Pretending

"Don't just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other."
Romans 12:9-10

It is easy to pretend. A lot of the time, I just go through the motions and put on a good act so that others have a good impression of me. My words are very big, but my actions are so very little. I will say that I love others and care for them, but that is as far as it goes. However, this does not please the Lord at all. He does not want me to pretend...HE HAS COMMANDED ME TO LOVE MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN CHRIST...and love is not a feeling but an action. So I must put love in action in my life and "really love others" and not just pretend.

Jesus did not just pretend to love sinners...He loved us with genuine affection. He humbled Himself and became like us so that we could be saved. Jesus came to us and met us in the depths of our spiritual poverty. We were living in the shadows of death, walking about as dead men in the darkness of evil; and He came and gave us life...He is the light of the world. He did not just give us a message of love, but His entire life was a picture of love as He demonstrated God's love by pouring out His very life on the cross and endured the wrath of the Father that should have been ours to bear. He gave up His life so that we might have abundant life. He suffered that we might share in His joy. We were helpless, hopeless, desperately lost, blind, and completely wicked, but Jesus did what we could not do. He saved us...He helped us...He is our hope....He found us....He has given us sight....He has cleansed us by His blood and now we are clean. Hallelujah! What a Savior!!! We are redeemed by Jesus..Praise His name!!

Jesus is our example of REAL LOVE, and we must follow in His steps. We must be a picture of Jesus' love here on earth. We must be spent, be poured out, emptied, used up, and be absolutely WASTED FOR JESUS because He is supreemely valuable in our lives. He is the greatest treasure, the greatest pleasure, the greatest joy we shall ever have.

So be spent for Jesus and live as He lived. Let us really love one another and no just pretend. Put love into action as Jesus did. And remember only Jesus can strengthen us and enable us to do so. So rely completely on Christ to obey His command to love...depend upon Him and surely He will do it.

29 March 2011


Written for my family as they move to Cameroon, Africa to share Jesus love with the people there.

Rejoicing in all God has done.
In your lives, I see Him displayed
As your greatest treasure of all;
Your mission: to proclaim His name.

Fix Your eyes on Christ…Run hard to the goal.
Consider the work He has done, He has saved your souls!

Press on, HOPE IN GOD…IN HIS HANDS you are safe. UNDER HIS WINGS…you are held---
you are HELD BY GRACE.
Take up your cross, follow Christ, let His praises resound.
as you journey HOMEWARD BOUND.

Cheering you on as you go
As you make much of Jesus today,
Considering all else as loss
Compared to the Savior’s name.

Fight the battle of faith…stand firm in Christ.
Trust Him with all of your heart, give Him your life.

Praying for you in my heart.
May God’s sustaining grace push you on
To follow Christ outside of the camp,
Calling the nations to join the song!

Jesus is mighty to save
For while yet sinners He died in our place.
Shout---shout His praise For He has given us grace!

26 March 2011

Always Be Ready!

"I am ready to burn out for God. I am ready to endure any hardship, if by any means I might save some. The longing of my heart is to make known my glorious Redeemer to those who have never heard."

-William Burns

Lost in the shadows of world missions is the story of William Burns. He is not remembered in history as a great preacher, a successful evangelist, a deep thinker, a passionate missionary, or a vibrant Christian, and although he was all of these things and more, most people do not even know who he was or what he did. Before all else, Burns was a man of prayer: persistent, persevering prayer. He spent long hours seeking the Lord in prayer. His ministry went forth as He pressed on, on his knees. The deep spring of spiritual wealth and passion that watered his ministry found its source from his precious Redeemer who had transformed Burn's life by His love. 

William Burns was born in Scotland during the year of 1815. God saved Burns early in his life and filled him with a great passion and burden for lost souls who needed to hear the Gospel. God used him as a tool in the Kilsyth Revival of 1839. Burns faithfulness to spend time with God in prayer marked his ministry and set his heart ablaze for God's glory. Scotland was turned upside down as a result of God's transforming work through a man who was committed to pray.

However Burns was not satisfied, and after laboring to proclaim the Gospel in Scotland, He decided to go as a missionary to China. A man asked Burns when he would be ready to leave for China, and his reply held no hesitancy at all:  "Now, I am ready to burn out for God. I am ready to endure any hardship, if by any means I might save some. The longing of my heart is to make known my glorious Redeemer to those who have never heard."

Burns worked alongside Hudson Taylor for a time, and they both greatly encouraged and spurred on by each others faith. Their ministry together was bathed in prayer. During days of public preaching as they declared the Gospel boldly, one would always be in constant prayer as the other preached, and then they would switch off. Taylor wrote in his journal of the impression Burns had on him, "Those happy months were an unspeakable joy and privilege to me. His love for the Word was delightful, and his holy, reverential life and constant communings with GOD made fellowship with him satisfying to the deep cravings of my heart."

Burns labored hard and relentlessly for the Lord in China. He went from town to town preaching the Gospel to all who would listen. At the age of fifty-three, Burns became terribly ill and died. His life on earth was over but his legacy and passion for the Lord echo on in history as we are spurred on today by his example.

So as my story comes to a close, here is my charge: Let us follow in his steps being completely spent for our precious Redeemer. Let us remember that Burns was not a great man who did great things, but rather that he served a great God who does great things. To follow in his steps, we must begin on our knee. We must start in prayer, continue in prayer, and end in prayer. Prayer must suround our every move, it  must be the very air we breath. For in prayer we are looking to God to fill our every need. But we must not be so easily distracted from this pursuit; we must wait and wrestle with the Lord just as Jacob wrestled with the angel. Burns longed for believers to know the same sweet fellowship that he had with the Lord, "Oh, how is it that the Lord's own people have so little perseverance? How is it that when they do enter into their place of prayer to be alone, they are so easily persuaded to be turned away empty; instead of wrestling with God to pour out His Spirit, they retire from the secret place without the answer, and submit to it as being God's will."

Burns was always ready to do whatever the Lord called him to do because he persevered in prayer. Let us also be faithful to pray and spend our time seeking the Lord. O may God use us to turn the world upside down as we live our lives with Him in constant prayer.

25 March 2011

Not home yet

The search is on; the search that consumes all of our lives, whether we know it or not. We all seek happiness; we all seek something that will satisfy our hearts. So like a scavenger hunt, we all race about filling our lives with what we think might make us happy and fill the void in our lives. However the sad fact is that I am not just writing about unbelievers who do not love the Lord, but also of those who love Jesus. How do I know this is so? Because I am one of them.

I love Jesus, and I confess that He is my Lord and Savior; but I am sinner. I easily take my eyes off Christ and seek my joy in other things. I forget that I am not home yet, and in a frantic rush I try to make this world feel like home. Is it any wonder when I lose heart and become discouraged because my attempts fail?! Only Jesus Christ can satisfy my heart and fill my soul with delight. I was not made for this world, and so it only makes sense that this world and everything in it will NEVER satisfy my heart.

At times life can be quite frustrating. I go off into the world to spread my wings, and find it a lonely, indifferent place so I long for the warmth of home, but when I get back home I do not find what I imagined to find. Instead I am left frustrated and wondering why I am not finding the happiness I sought. I have heard the same of marriage. Someone not married thinks that if only he were married, then he would be truly happy; but after the fact he thinks that maybe if he were single again he would be happier. We covet what others have; we envy others happiness; we claw for all we can grab in this world; we spend our money and buy what we see, hoping to buy something that will fill more than our hands; but we come away emptier than ever though we possess more than we ever had before. Perhaps we were made for something more than this…

In Jeremiah 20 the Lord says to His people: “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” God has placed all of us in this world, and the search is on. The problem is we are searching for the wrong things! We are seeking earthly happiness that does not satisfy our souls. We must stop doing this, and instead look to Jesus to fill our hearts with joy. We must seek God with ALL OF OUR HEARTS and we will find Him; we will find true joy and satisfaction in Him alone.

This earth is not our home. So we must stop trying to make it look and feel like home. Fight the battle of faith, seek the Lord with all of your heart, run the good race; but know that this earth is not home and will never be home. Not until that day when we leave this body behind will we be home. And in that instant God will transform us into Christ’s likeness and the sin that so long tormented us on this earth will be forever gone. We will find our joy in Christ alone and the search will be over. But our happiness will have only just began…each moment will become better and more wonderful then the next.

16 March 2011

God's Grace Abounds

Almighty God,
Everlasting King,
 Meciful Savior,
Your praise I sing.

The crashing waves,
the angry thunder,
the fierce storms of life,
Atest to Your wonder.

All of me
Before you bows
In humble adoration
I don't know how...

Your sovereignty
And goodness meet;
But I trust You Lord,
My heart to keep.

In perfect peace
Your love surrounds,
This storm tossed soul;
Your grace abounds.

Mine is insufficient strength
And weakened faith,
But You supply my heart
And so I stand by grace.

Yet my heart is filled
With tormenting fears
Attend me with Your love, Lord,
 I know you collect my tears.

So my heart renewed,
Is transformed
By the Power of Your love
AmidstYour gift of storms.

So before You, Lord,
I quietly remain
Enthralled by Your beauty;
Exalting Your name!

20 February 2011


February 20, 2011

Life has a way of speeding up, things get busy at work, and I often forget and lose sight of what truly matters. I seem to suddenly find myself overwhelmed and discouraged in my spiritual life and I do not understand why. But God is ever gracious and merciful to me, and does not fail to teach and correct me. He is a patient God and it is not His method to teach us quick and rushed lessons. I have found this to be so the past three months that I have been out to sea. Each patrol I find that God teaches me wonderful lessons about Himself, though they are not easy lessons to learn, they are beautiful and fill me with great joy. It is not an easy thing to sum up the lessons learned over the past three months, but as I stand looking back, I know and am convinced that God has been teaching me a crucial heart lesson: LIVE EACH DAY AMAZED BY GOD.

Where delight and duty meet is hard to differentiate, and it is extremely easy to begin serving God with joy and gladness and then all too soon to turn that service into a mere duty that must be accomplished. My joy in knowing God and spending time with God and being amazed by Him is easily turned into a longing and striving to honor Him as a way to win His favor. What meaninglessness this is because I cannot merit anything from my Lord! I am a worthless sinner SAVED BY GRACE! But I forget, and as life rushes on I busily try to serve God and work up emotions and longings that look Christ-exalting all the while I fail to do what is most important…I fail to be amazed by the God who has saved me.

I see that this has happened the past three months. Perhaps God had to break me and show me my utter helplessness in order to teach me this lesson anew. For at the beginning of this patrol, I met with so many opportunities to serve Christ, to reach out to others…and now as I look back I feel like an utter failure. I do not think I used the opportunities He gave me to the best of my ability. What happened, I wonder? I wanted to glorify God, I wanted to make much of Christ, and now I am left with so many wishes and longings of what should have been in my mind. Fear seemed to come in as a flood, as a paralyzing force, and I was rendered unable to do anything. I cried out to God in my inability, waiting and longing for Him to work to help me; so troubled that I could not even find words to even pray. I felt like a joke…here I am professing a faith in a God who fills me with joy and delight, all the while my soul was in turmoil and despair. How could I be a witness of the Gospel when my own soul was in such a state. And like the waves of the sea, I was tossed and thrown about…one moment happy and joyful in the Lord and the next moment I was taken down to the depths. But I know Christ never once left me, even as I felt completely alone.

And as a traveler so set on a journey that his eyes remain fixed on the ground in front of him…so I was set on serving Christ, but my eyes were not fixed on Christ. I was trying and striving to live for Him, to honor Him, to use my life to glorify Him, and so I find that I failed to be amazed by Him. Only as we are fixed upon the Son, will we e able to reflect His light; only as we are astounded by His mercy and grace, will we be able to live lives that are overflowing with compassion towards others; and only as we are completely enthralled by His beauty, will we be able to shine that beauty to this world. It is not in striving that we will glorify God, but in knowing and resting in the truth that He is God that we will magnify His name.

Yes we should serve Him, yes all our longings should be consumed in glorifying His name, and yes we should live every moment for our Savior; but we cannot do any of this unless we are first living each day amazed by His amazing and life transforming grace. We must live AMAZED BY GOD! He is our greatest good, our deepest joy, our most priceless treasure, our highest pleasure, and our abiding peace. In Christ alone our hope is found and we must fix our eyes on Him alone in order to live each day for His glory. Our strength is guaranteed to fail, our motivation will disappear, our faith will weaken, our love will grow cold, but Christ remains the same: He’s love is constant and never fails…upon Him we must fix our sight lest we be tossed about by the troubles of this life.

And so I sit here thinking about the past three month…quite humbled and quiet in my heart, but the sparks of amazement are kindled by God’s love. So as I face this new day, I smile in amazement at my gracious, kind God who holds me by His grace. Perhaps I have found once again that God is not so much concerned about the work I do for Him but the work He does in me.

O great God, I stand amazed by the power of Your love! I am a sinner, only saved by Your great grace, and I am Your servant to do as You will. So use me to shine for Your glory, to reflect Your beauty, and to be a light in this dark world. I struggle, I am so weak, but You enable me to do the impossible. You supply me with grace so that I can serve You. You fill me with joy in Your presence. I love You , O Lord, my precious Savior and my God!

13 February 2011

Precious Jesus

Precious Jesus, You are near

When my heart is filled with fear,

When my soul is burdened down

By doubt’s and guilt’s clamoring sound.

When my life so weary be

from raging waves in my sea.

When my mind will not be still

And rest alone in Your perfect will.

When my eyes are filled with tears

From listening to all my fears.

Precious Jesus Your love’s the same

Through sun filled valleys and darkened plains.

through hardships, struggles, joy and peace

Through bitter days and sweet release.

Through crashing storms and raging seas

Through sorrows mark: character’s key

Through sin and failure, faith and growth

Through life and death and the cheering heavenly host.

Through all of time: future, present, past

Your love remains; it forever lasts.

Precious Jesus, I surrender all

Unto you my Lord…you heard my call.

For help to carry on in faith

When I was going to quit the race.

But your grace is greater than my sin,

Your love floods my heart within.

When such weariness overwhelms me so

You strength is mine, so onward I go.

Pressing heavenward toward my home.

Until then, You are with me...I am never alone.

09 February 2011

How Great is Our God!

09 February 2011

Before it was time for me to go to work today, I climbed up to the flying bridge (which is where the look out stands watch) and watched while the sun burned away the morning fog and climbed higher in the sky overlooking San Diego. Ducks swam in the water while boats were coming and going and cars we driving over the bay on the Coronado Bridge on their way to work. The sky brightened into lovely shades of pink and gold and the clouds scattered from view, revealing a vibrant blue sky.

I needed to witness God’s beauty displayed through His creation this morning. I needed to see how great and awesome He is…to be reminded that I do not serve a God who needs my service, I do not worship a God who depends upon my worship, I do not love a God who loves me because of who I am. No I serve a God who came to earth and served me and saved me from the punishment for my sins, I worship a God who reconciled me to Himself so I can know the wonder and joy of knowing Him and glorifying Him, and I love a God who first loved me and has transformed my life by His love.

He does not need me…I NEED HIM. He does not depend upon me…I DEPEND UPON HIM. He is my all; my greatest good.

This is what I was reminded of this morning. HOW GREAT IS OUR GOD! He is the Sovereign Creator, the Righteous King, the merciful Savior...He is mighty to save...He is faithful, He is patient, His compassion knows no limits, His love NEVER FAILS.

Never let the struggles---the clouds of today---keep you from trusting and rejoicing in the Lord who is beautiful in splendor and majesty. You may not be able to see Him at work in your life, but He sees you...You may not be able to feel His presence, but He is holding you in His hands...You may feel overwhelmed but know that He is always with You. He will never leave You nor will He forsake you. Trust Him and rely upon His promises. Press on today in Christ's strength. Do not grow weary of doing good, but rather fix your eyes on what is unseen---fix your eyes on Jesus and He will renew your strength, He will fill you with joy, He may not take away your struggles, but He will sustain you in them.

Never forget that Jesus loves you----know and rely upon His love. And if you ever doubt His love...remember to do this...turn your eyes to the cross. For at the cross, Jesus demonstrated God's love as He gave up His life, endured God's wrath so that we might pocess this love which is better than life.

11 January 2011

I will serve the Lord

I Will Serve the Lord
December 18, 2010

“Now fear the LORD and serve Him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve…but as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.

-Joshua 24:14-15


I read this passage this morning before going to church. By way of background, Joshua is giving the Israelites his final charge. He had accomplished the mission God had given Him of leading the People of Israel out of the dessert and into the Promised Land. He has been there every step of the way since the Israelites were in slavery in Egypt, to the time God delivered them from bondage through His servant Moses. He was a witness of the mighty hand of God parting the Red Sea, provided food and water for His people, going before them defeating their enemies, and His glorious, awful presence on Mount Sinai. He also watched as the Children of Israel turned from the LORD again and again, faithless to the covenant of their God when they made and worshiped the golden calf, filled with grumbling and complaining to the God who had taken pit on them, stubborn and rebellious to shrink back from entering the land of Canaan because of fear, and arrogant and obstinate to disobey the LORD over and over again.

Joshua knew these people. So he gave them a charge that they must make a decision whom they would serve. They could not serve YAHWEH, the One True God, as well as all the other gods they had served and the people around them served. They had to choose whom they would serve, love, worship, honor, and cherish. As for Joshua, his mind was made up…He was going to serve the LORD.

As I meditate on this passage, I realize that I should not be so quick to gloss over Joshua’s charge to the Israelites, failing to ask myself the same question. True, I do not live in a society that bows down to images of gold and silver and stone; but I do live among people who worship themselves, they worship the gods of comfort and ease, the gods of wealth and success, and the gods of pleasure and sex. I live in a world where Christians join right in chasing after the “American Dream”, pursuing and living for the same things that this world is, and finding God to be quite boring and old fashioned.

Well, I have a choice. Will I join in with this world and go along with them serving false gods? Will I settle for cheap Christianity and just go through the motions of going to church and wearing the religious mask? Or will I serve the Lord?

My heart answers with everything in me, “I WILL SERVE THE LORD!”

A Soul Awakening

A Soul Awakening

Lately I have been struggling knowing what to say when I share my faith and witness to my fellow Coasties. An overwhelming fear and dread has paralyzed my heart and I have not known what to do. I have cried out to God, but continue to struggle. However He is perfect in wisdom and faithful to make me like Jesus, and He has been teaching me to wait on Him, but as I have been reading Macarthur’s book, He a great soul awakening has been taking place in me by the power of the Holy Spirit.

I have been worried and anxious about what I should say when I am sharing my faith---because I have been trying to make it appealing. BUT I KNOW WHAT TO SAY!!! The Bible is clear---enough trying to please men for I am a slave of Christ.

So may the Lord’s name be praised for He has shown me my sin and forgiven me! And now through the Spirit’s power I must destroy it and not allow even a remnant to survive. I have been weighed down by the burden of sharing my faith because of fear of so many things because I have fallen into the trap of watering down the Gospel to make it sound good. But God has delivered me by His power and continues to deliver me---to preach the truth of the Gospel as His Word declares without fear for it is the power of God for the salvation of all who believe…I have been entrusted with the message and God is in control of the results.

What great weights have been lifted from my soul, what renewed joy is mine in Jesus!


Holy Spirit, help me live this out every moment.

Without Compromise

Without Compromise
December 5, 2010

God has truly blessed me today by challenging me from one of John Macarthur’s I have been reading: Hard to Believe. In a nut shell, Macarthur wrote this books to “Christians” pleading and urging them to examine their faith, realizing that true faith requires taking up ones cross and following after Jesus. He delves into the traps we have fallen into of making Christianity into some sort of social club and how we water down the Gospel to make it easier to believe; when truly the Gospel, without our light shows, is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes (Romans1:16).

So tomorrow I commit to praying that I would live, speak, and share the truth of the Gospel WITHOUT COMPROMISE. I have been watering it down trying to make it look good and appealing. I am wrong---O God, please help me! This message…Your message….is foolishness to the world. May I not compromise because I am trying to please them.

One Life

One Life
December 5, 2010

I find that all too often, which is almost all of the time, we spend our lives in a fantasy world of our own making; as though we were building castles in the sands of time only to find that they will all too soon be swept away once the tides of reality come in. Life is only a vapor and it will soon fade away like the last rays of the sun before it finally sets below the horizon and is hidden from sight and darkness falls. We only have but one life to live on this earth, and it will soon be over.

So as I think over this reality, that God has placed me here on this earth for such a short time to declare His praise and live for Him, I charge my soul in the sight of God:

Put off all wickedness, and put on Christ. Cease complaining, arguing, speaking worthlessness, and belittling others to make myself look good; and instead give thanks to God, live at peace with others, set a guard over your mouth and say things that point to Jesus and encourage those who listen.

Run hard for the goal. Fix your eyes on Jesus, O Soul, and think of your true HOME, which is not this earth. Set your thoughts on heaven where Jesus is and be filled with eager excitement and joyful expectation of the day when you will finally be home with Christ.

Testify to the Gospel of God’s grace with all boldness and gentleness. Share the hope that Jesus has given you and do not hesitate to be an ambassador of our mighty Savior. Soul do not cower in fear but remember the Jesus is always with You and that He is your greatest Treasure. Acknowledge Christ before men and He will acknowledge you before His Father in heaven.

Life every second in the shadow of the cross, relying fully on the grace that was given you from God to enter into His presence with sure confidence because of the atoning work of Jesus Christ. He has ransomed you, He has cleansed you, He has put His robes of righteousness on you and now you are hidden in Christ. O Soul, live today with this close to your heart so that joy overspills from your life.

Singing Praises to my King

Singing the Praises of My King December 5, 2010

Over the weekend we moored up to San Diego, CA for a night. I thoroughly enjoyed talking to my family one more time before heading down south and out of cell phone signal area. Then I unburied my guitar from the dark corner I had placed it in my locker and enjoyed some time playing and singing. For Christmas my family gave me a notebook filled with my brothers songs and my songs (I was so happy and excited!). So I was playing away on the mess deck singing some of our songs.

My prayer is that God would use my guitar playing and singing for His honor and glory, and if ever there is a moment when I start doing it for my own praise and glory that He would take away my ability to do both because it is by His strength and grace alone that I can play and sing.

So I sat there on the mess deck playing and singing praises to my King whose love is matchless and amazing. He deserves all glory and honor for He is the Lord Almighty---the Maker of heaven and earth.

01 January 2011

One Final Voyage


The Watches of the Night                                                                                                       November 30, 2010
Last night we began getting into some rough waters around twenty-two hundred. We found out very quickly how well we secured for sea, as things that were not secured properly went crashing to the decks. Throughout the night I would wake up, fearing that my laptop would fall off the shelf I had placed it on. So I tossed and turned and did not get much sleep. The loneliness and distance of loved ones back home seemed very great last night as my heart struggled with contentment. As the waves of the sea rocked our boat my own doubts and fears swirled around me causing m heart much turmoil. Yet Jesus is greater than all my fears and He is mighty to save and to sustain me. As I lay awake in my rack, listening to everything banging and rolling around, I had to surrender once again to God’s perfect and beautiful plan. The Holy Spirit comforted me with verses from the Psalms, bringing to my mind Psalm 23, 91, 130, and some others. He is my Shepherd, under His wings I find refuge, and His promises shine brighter and stronger than all my fears and doubts.
I went to watch, feeling very sea sick for the first time. With all the rolling and pitching out boat has been doing, my stomach was all in knots. The mess deck was a wreck as I got my cup of tea. Coffee grounds covered the floor and as I walked by we hit a roll and I went sliding across the deck, knocking a pan of oranges off a table in the process. I did finally get my tea though. Watch was long and we nearly lost MID II which is one of our small boats. The pin had come out of the cradle it was secured to, which caused it to dip and snapped one of the lines. So I had to round up some people to take care of that.
Up on the Bridge it is something else to watch the waves crash over the bow of the boat and the water was reaching up all the to the Bridge where we were at! All the weather decks and outside decks are secured to everybody because the waves and rolling is so bad. So it has been sort of exciting this morning. It is almost sunrise, which is nice because throughout the night it was so dark we could not see how high the waves are so now at least we can see what is going on, but it is all cloudy and gray outside, but one thing I know for sure even though I cannot see the sun shining, it is beyond the clouds that surround us.


November 29, 2010

The Lord comforted my heart this morning with verses from the Psalms. I was reminded once again that He is my rock and my refuge, He is my God in whom I trust and the sustainer of my soul, and He is my fortress and my Deliverer. Storms arise in my heart, and the waves and breakers of this life crash over my soul like the angry waves crash over my boat, but Jesus stands as my Savior, walking on the water that threatens my faith. He reaches out and pulls me up from angry torrents that swirl around me, and I am saved. He is God, His is the Almighty One who by the word of His mouth spoke the universe into being. So I trust in Him, I will fix my eyes upon Him, I will be satisfied with His love and rejoice in His salvation. My God is mighty to save, and He is mighty to sustain! Blessed be my God; blessed be the Lord Jesus Christ!

November 29, 2010

November 29, 2010

This morning the USCGC Midgett set out on a patrol, heading down south; and so begins the start of my third patrol. It is hard to believe that we are already heading out again because it feels like we just arrived back here Seattle not so long ago. I am excited about this patrol because I know that God is going to do mighty things and teach me many lessons, stretching me in my faith and reminding me to ALWAYS trust in Him.

We had a few delays this morning that caused us to leave a couple hours later than we had planned. Our engineers had to work on fixing a major lube oil leak before we could start our cruise down the pacific. Things cleared up and we pulled out of Seattle after lunch. I finished the work day with some odd jobs here and there: securing things for sea, searching for a flag, velcrowing a thermometer so it will not fall out of its box, and other fun things of that sort. After sixteen hundred, I studied a little of my boat crew packet, worked on learning French (Bonjour! Ca va?), and ate dinner. Tomorrow I have 0400-0800 watch, so I’ll be getting up around 0245 to get ready for that…so an early morning for me! I enjoy the early morning watches though, because the boat is all quiet and everyone is sleeping.

So now I am having my cup of tea before bed, and I am going read my Bible.

So my new adventure has just begun, and I do not know what God has in store, but I know that His hand leads and guides me forth as He sustains me by His grace and mercy.

Destroying Our Idols

God's Will or Your Own?



Written for my family as they move to Cameroon, Africa to share Jesus love with the people there.

Rejoicing in all God has done.
In your lives, I see Him displayed
As your greatest treasure of all;
Your mission: to proclaim His name.

Fix Your eyes on Christ…Run hard to the goal.
Consider the work He has done, He has saved your souls!

Press on, HOPE IN GOD…IN HIS HANDS you are safe. UNDER HIS WINGS…you are held---
you are HELD BY GRACE.
Take up your cross, follow Christ, let His praises resound.
as you journey HOMEWARD BOUND.

Cheering you on as you go
As you make much of Jesus today,
Considering all else as loss
Compared to the Savior’s name.

Fight the battle of faith…stand firm in Christ.
Trust Him with all of your heart, give Him your life.

Press on, HOPE IN GOD…IN HIS HANDS you are safe. UNDER HIS WINGS…you are held---
you are HELD BY GRACE.
Take up your cross, follow Christ, let His praises resound.
as you journey HOMEWARD BOUND.

Praying for you in my heart.
May God’s sustaining grace push you on
To follow Christ outside of the camp,
Calling the nations to join the song!

Jesus is mighty to save
For while yet sinners He died in our place.
Shout---shout His praise For He has given us grace!

Press on, HOPE IN GOD…IN HIS HANDS you are safe. UNDER HIS WINGS…you are held---
Take up your cross, follow Christ, let His praises resound.
as you journey HOMEWARD BOUND.

Take the Adventure

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