Wooden carving of Jesus on the cross

Is Jesus Beautiful to You?

“We must focus on Jesus, the source and goal of our faith. He saw the joy ahead of him, so he endured death on the cross and ignored the disgrace it brought him. Then he received the highest position in heaven, the one next to the throne of God ( Hebrews 12:2 GWT).”

I am constantly overwhelmed by the beauty of the Lord, especially during times of personal trials. During those difficult times, I begin to focus and meditate on Jesus’ death on the cross. You might say, “how can a naked, bleeding, dying man on a cross be seen as beautiful?” And I’d tell you, “the cross of Jesus is beautiful because I know that it should have been the cross of Jesse (me).”

As horrific and awful as Jesus’ crucifixion was, it is exceedingly more beautiful once you understand what He was accomplishing for us. Jesus was paying our debt, suffering our punishment, and satisfying the wrath of God for our sins. It often renders me speechless because it is so beautiful and undeserved. Nothing will ever surpass this in beauty.

Is Jesus beautiful to you? Do you find His shed blood repulsive or life giving? Do you run from His wounds or are they your hiding place? Jesus endured the cross for you, friend. Fix your eyes upon Him and behold His beauty today. Turn from your sins and turn to Jesus in faith.

3 Reasons Why Your Church Needs an Online Presence

3 Reasons Why Your Church Needs an Online Presence

Is it okay if I step up on my soapbox for a moment? This is a subject that I am very passionate about. In fact, one of the main reasons I freelance as a web designer is because I want to help churches develop their own online presence and ministries. I believe it is important for three reasons. Let me tell you why.

1. People will ask Google before they ask you.

If we have a question about something we know nothing about, what is they first thing we do? We pull out our smart devices, open our browsers and search for the answer. We trust Google with everything nowadays. Where’s the closest library? Is there a swimming pool nearby? Where can I find a Thai restaurant in Atlanta? And about 90% of the time, we find exactly what we are looking for. So, if someone in your neighborhood searches for “churches near me,” you want to make sure your church is listed. Not only that, your church needs to have a good looking, winsome website. In today’s world, your website is essentially your church’s first impression. It tells people everything they need to know about your congregation before you go. Your church could have the best music, best preacher, and the sweetest people in the world; if your website looks sloppy, people will not want to visit. It is as simple as that.

2. Believers are spending more and more time on their phones.

According to the Barna Group’s “State of the Bible 2018” study:

More than half of [Bible] users now search for Bible content on the internet (57%) or a smartphone (55%), and another 42 percent use a Bible app on their phones.

We live in a day when people don’t have to wait until Sunday or Wednesday night to hear a sermon. We have 24/7 access to Bible teaching via the internet. I have heard from several pastors that they are working on developing blogs and podcasts to keep up with the growing need for biblical resources online. Your church’s online presence isn’t just for nonbelievers; it is also for your members. Your church’s website and social media pages should serve as a tool for helping your congregation grow in spiritual maturity. With a website you can upload sermon audio, post your church’s statement of faith, explain the Gospel in a video, etc. And your members can access these things at any time. Don’t waste this opportunity to edify and strengthen your brothers and sisters in Christ.

3. The Gospel is in everyone’s pocket. They just need to be notified.

Let’s just admit it. We all love seeing that we have notifications on social media. There is something about that little red bell that makes us feel like others care about us. Most of our notifications are simply likes on our selfies and comments on the funny meme we shared. Church, we are missing so many opportunities here. Through social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat we have a direct connection to our friends’ lives. We have been given a digital soapbox to share the Gospel with them wherever they are. Someone’s eternity could change with one post, message, or share.

This has huge implications for missions as well. In fact, I know of many people here in Thailand who live in very remote areas in the mountains. They may not have cars or fancy homes, but they have Facebook and email. I should note that nothing will ever take the place of face-to-face witnessing and evangelism. But, God is doing some incredible things through Internet evangelism ministries like GlobalRize (who are always in need of volunteers, by the way).  We would be foolish to neglect this incredible opportunity in the history of world missions.


I hope this has helped you understand how important an online presence is for the local church. If you are interested in learning about how to develop one for your local church, please do not hesitate to contact me. I would love to talk with you. In the meantime, feel free to check out my web design portfolio for some examples of websites I have designed in the past. May the Lord bless you as you seek to make Him know all over the world [wide web].

Learn a New Skill to the Glory of God

Learn a New Skill to the Glory of God

Have you ever tried learning a instrument? Or studied a foreign language? It can be a very challenging undertaking. There are plenty of wrong notes and words at first, but eventually you get to where you can play your first song or have a conversation in the new language. You feel a great sense of accomplishment for persevering through all of the hours of practice and repetition. It’s a wonderful feeling!

Learning new skills can open up doors of opportunity that were previously closed to you. It allows you to make new friends and develop new relationships with people you never would have met before.  For the past two years, my wife and I have been studying the Thai language. It has been a rather daunting task at times, but it has also been extremely rewarding. It is difficult to imagine where we would be right now if we hadn’t been studying Thai. We have met so many people as a result of our studies and practice of the language. I believe it has also allowed us to make real friends with Thai people because they see we appreciate their language and culture enough to learn it. We still have a long journey ahead of us on the road to fluency, but I know that the Lord will help us every step of the way.

Of course, as missionaries, we aren’t just trying to learn the language so that we can order Pad Thai or talk about our favorite Thai movie. We are pouring hours and hours into studying so that one day we can preach the Gospel and share God’s Word in Thai, without too much distraction from our foreign accent. There is a goal to all of this: it’s to make Jesus known among Thai people, that they too might glorify God.

Maybe you are considering learning a new language, taking a cooking or photography class, or perhaps, learning how to juggle. Whatever it is, let me encourage you to do it. Pursue it! Give it a try! You never know, you may end up loving it. It may even take your life in a completely different direction. But, whatever you end up trying, leverage it to the glory of God. Do painters need Jesus? Do writers need Jesus? What about skateboarders? Yes, of course they do! And you could be the person to tell them about Him. Is that not reason enough to give it shot?

In 1 Corinthians 9:19-23, the Apostle Paul says:

For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, that I might win the more. And to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the Law, as under the Law, though not being myself under the Law, that I might win those who are under the Law; to those who are without law, as without law, though not being without the law of God but under the law of Christ, that I might win those who are without law. To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak; I have become all things to all men, that I may by all means save some. And I do all things for the sake of the gospel, that I may become a fellow partaker of it.

Paul was willing to do some “preevangelism” in hopes that unbelievers would be more open to listening to the Gospel. If he had to learn a new skill, so be it. In verse 19, Paul says that although he is a free man, he has made himself a slave to all people. He was willing to do whatever it took in order to save some. Are we?

3 Tips for Sharing Your Faith

3 Tips for Sharing Your Faith

This morning I am praying for the Lord to give us more opportunities to share the Gospel where we live. In this current season of our lives, we could make many excuses not to share it with others. “We don’t speak the language well enough yet. What if it damages a relationship we have been building? What if they get angry, or worse, laugh at us?” These are the questions we ask in fear of man, not in reverential fear of God.

Of course we want to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves, but we should never be fearful. God is with us. He goes before us. And He is always there to fall back on. Our speech should be seasoned with the salt, but not watered down (Colossians 4:6). Here are three tips that I have learned over the years from sharing my faith with others from around the world:

1. Preach the simple Gospel

It is so easy to get carried away while sharing with a non-believer. You had every intention to tell that Jesus loves them and that He died for their sins. But, now you are in an unfruitful debate about who the Nephilim were. This happened to me just the other day. Christians, know and study every word in the Bible. I’ll say it again. KNOW AND STUDY EVERY WORD IN THE BIBLE. However, when sharing your faith with a non-believer, you don’t have to defend every word of Scripture or try to answer every last question they ask you. In fact, you likely will not have all of the answers. That’s okay! You have all of the Gospel, so preach that. Explain the depths of mankind’s sin and then, explain the great lengths that God went to, in order to, save us from it.  Tell them that He sent His only begotten Son to the earth to be crucified on a cross for our sins. Then, share with them the glorious Good News of the Resurrection! Jesus is alive; He is risen from the dead and He is coming again! Make sure they know that whosoever believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life. Of course, there is always more that can be said and explained, but this is the crux of the Gospel. Don’t get distracted by things that take you away from preaching this. Tell them how this Good News has changed your life.

2. Don’t wait 

People are dying every minute and are going to hell. It is not a truth we like to talk about, but it is the truth nonetheless. I read the other day that there at still around 2 billion people in the world who are considered unreached with the Gospel. Our message is urgent. Our mission is non-negotiable. Our task is still unfinished. If you feel burdened to share with a friend, co-worker, or even a stranger, do it today. Don’t wait. Pray for God to give you the courage, strength, and words to speak. No one knows when he or she will breathe their last breath. Likewise, no one knows the day or the hour when Jesus will return. Today is the day for sharing. Today is the day of salvation.

3. Rest in the grace of God

I have had wonderful evangelism encounters and I have had not so wonderful evangelism encounters in the past. I have seen people respond in faith and I have seen people respond in anger. I have had times when I felt like the Lord was speaking through me and other times where I felt like was stumbling over my words and thoughts. Can I give you a word of advice? Don’t beat yourself up when you don’t see the desired outcome. I would love for every person I share with to become a believer right there on the spot. But if I am honest, that is rarely the case. You may spend your entire life watering and watering without ever seeing much harvest. Even so, do not compromise. Do not try to manufacture results or coerce people into making decisions. Rest in His grace at all times. In the end, sharing your faith isn’t about you. It is about Him. He will do the heavy lifting. You just stay faithful.

Will you join me in praying for the people of Thailand to come to know Jesus? Will you pray for us as we seek opportunities to share this wonderful Good News with others? Let us cling tightly to the truth of Romans 1:16 today. And may God bless you as you share with others wherever you are today.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.