“We Will Give Birth To Our Son.” (Luke 9:23)

The young couple were members at the church which we were attending at that time. Many of us were in the same life stage and were having or had just given birth to our first child. We knew this couple was expecting and we had not heard a recent update, until that fateful day when they shared their news. Their fetus had been diagnosed with a fatal condition. It was still within the first trimester and their physician and consultants advised them to terminate the pregnancy. 

The news was devastating. Yet, their decision was even more impactful. Resolute and courageous, they informed the church, “We have prayed about this for many days and have sought godly counsel. We will go through with this pregnancy. We will not have an abortion. We will give birth to our son.”

Even amongst Christians, there was a debate about their decision. From a medical standpoint, there was absolutely no chance the child would survive for a few minutes after being born. Very few questioned whether a medically induced abortion would be justified. Yet, it was not our decision to make, nor was it a decision based upon medical expediency. It was a decision based upon their faith in Jesus Christ, their Lord and Savior. 

…If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross daily, and follow me. 

Luke 9:23 (NLT)

What is the cost of living a life in submission to Jesus Christ? What does it mean to count the cost of living a life of faith? It means not listening to the advice of the world nor following our emotions. It means forsaking all to follow Jesus Christ and His commands. 

Since that pregnancy, God has mightily blessed this couple with two healthy boys. Their lives are a testimony to their decision to follow Jesus Christ, no matter the cost. Their story still inspires our family. May it inspire you and your loved ones to take up your own Cross and follow Jesus Christ.


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

Off The Grid (Genesis 3:8-9)

“Just letting you know, we are leaving for the cabin on Friday morning and won’t be back until Monday evening. So we will be off the grid.”

“Got it! Have fun!”

My associate owns a cabin in the nearby mountains. Every few months, she and her family spend an extended weekend there. The photographs she has shared with me depict an idyllic setting of a log cabin nestled in dense foliage. It has everything one would need to physically and emotionally recharge. It also has no internet connection. Even their cell phones do not work. They have a landline which they use for emergencies and a select number of close family members and friends have the number in case of an emergency. Otherwise, there is not even a television or radio. They are completely cut off from the outside world and off the grid. 

I have never attempted to do what my colleague regularly does and I am unsure if I could. Running my own business, concern for family members and friends-many of the reasons that I give would probably apply to most of us. However, the appeal of spending time alone with my family with no other distractions is appealing. Recently, I had the opportunity to do this with a week-long vacation and road trip.

For much of the trip, we had no internet connection. We had each other and beheld the beauty of God’s creation as we toured the National Parks of Zion, Bryce, Antelope Valley, and the Grand Canyon. At the end of the day, when we returned to our hotel room with an internet connection, we caught up on text messages, emails, and news. Did I miss anything urgent? There were some small fires to put out but overall, getting off the grid was not as painful as I dreaded. What about my spiritual life? Can I ever go off the grid with God?

When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the LORD God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the LORD God among the trees. Then the LORD God called to the man, “Where are you?” 

Genesis 3:8-9 (NLT)

Since the beginning, mankind has unsuccessfully attempted to go off grid with God. After Adam and Eve sinned for the first time, they were overcome with guilt and shame. They had chosen to follow their own paths and succumbed to Satan’s temptation. In a pathetic and futile action, they attempted to hide from God, to disconnect from Him and go off grid. 

When God asks us, ”Where are you?” He is not confused and uncertain about our location. The question is directed toward us. Where are we going if we choose not to follow God, our Creator? To whom will we follow? God honors our time to go off the grid, to recharge and regenerate, but during these times, He did not create us to go off the grid from Him. When we go off the grid, it is to give us an opportunity to seek God and draw closer to Him. Even our Lord, Jesus Christ, spent time alone, in prayer and conversation with His Heavenly Father, as He sought guidance and wisdom from Him.

Off the grid means leaving this world behind so that we may experience more of God’s world.


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

“It Takes You That Long?” (Luke 5:4-6)

My dermatopathology associate was fuming about another dermatologist with whom he had a recent conversation. 

“He was asking me how many cases did I sign out in a day and how long did it take? I already knew where this conversation was headed.”

“What did you say?”

“I told him that I usually sign out about 150 cases a day and it depends upon the types of cases. Some cases like a skin tag take just a few seconds while a complex case like a melanoma may take a half hour or more. After I said that, he scoffed and said, ‘Really? It takes you that long? Wow, I read out my cases in a half hour!’ “

I looked at my colleague and shook my head. We both knew this dermatologist read about 10 cases a day, a mere fraction of what either of us do. In addition, we were consultants, reviewing cases of far greater complexity than what is usually seen by a community dermatologist. It was a ludicrous comparison. There are few situations that annoy me as much as when someone else thinks they can do your job better than you can. However, it is not only other physicians. This attitude has been inflicted upon me by hospital administrators, office managers, medical assistants and nearly everyone involved in health care. They do not know the nuances of our practice in spite of them informing us they do. What motivates them to do this? Insecurity about their own abilities? Jealousy? Arrogance? Ignorance? All of the above? The Bible gives us an interesting encounter that echoes this same sentiment.

When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Now go out where it is deeper, and let down your nets to catch some fish.”
“Master,” Simon replied, “we worked hard all last night and didn’t catch a thing. But if you say so, I’ll let the nets down again.” And this time their nets were so full of fish they began to tear! Luke 5:4-6 (NLT)

I can imagine the snarky tone that Peter had when he responded to Jesus’ request. What was going through his head? Oh sure Jesus, like you’re an expert in fishing! You’re a carpenter and you’re telling me how to do my job? I guess you think my job is easy compared to yours? Ok fine, I’ll do as you say and I’ll show everyone that you have no idea what you are talking about! To Peter’s amazement, when he obeyed Jesus, his nets were overflowing with fish. 

When a colleague informs me that they can do my job better than I can, what is my response? It would have been the same as Peter had toward Jesus. I am just as petty. Thanks be to God that when He gives unsolicited advice, it is not to shame but to uplift us. I am so grateful to serve my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who knows me better than I know myself. 


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

Contentment (1 Timothy 6:6-8)

I lurk but never post on several social media platforms. Many of the people I follow are former high school classmates and most I have not seen since high school, over forty years ago. It has been gratifying to see the directions their lives have taken and to see their families, some of them with grandchildren. However, the most interesting thing I have learned is that some of my former classmates are Christian believers. They openly speak of their faith on these websites and frequently give thanks to God for the blessings in their life. As I read these postings, I attempt to recall what kind of people they were in high school. None of them ever witnessed to me about their faith nor did they openly speak about it, at least not to me. However, I always sensed there was something different about them. None of us were party animals or lived a wild lifestyle. We all struggled in school and had our close circle of friends with shared interests. We all had our unique talents. No, it was something more. It was true then and it is still true today. With the hindsight of decades of walking with God, I believe it can be summed up in one word. Contentment. 

Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content. 

1 Timothy 6:6-8 (NLT)

Certainly my friends would complain about pressing issues but they would not rant. On their social media postings, they seek to uplift others rather than to grouse about things they cannot change. They delight in their relationship with God and the blessings that it brings. They witness to the world that there is a difference when one meets a Christian. Contentment can be defined as a sufficiency for the necessities of life. For a Christian, this sufficiency can only be found in a relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. The great Protestant reformer, Martin Luther, eloquently summarized this attitude. “I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all. But whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess.”

I pray that my life, like my former classmates, can be a similar witness of contentment in Jesus Christ. 

Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

Professional Courtesy (James 2:2-4)

“Dr. Smith! You’ll be fine! See you next month to see how you’re healing.”

“Thanks Doc!”

I saw my father scribble the initials “PC” next to his name. Pointing at it, I asked my father, “What does that mean, Dad? I thought his name was Jake Smith?”

“The PC? Oh, it means professional courtesy. Dr. Smith is a physician. For all physicians and dentists, I usually don’t charge them or if it is a really big procedure, I give them a discount.”

In a bygone era, many physicians, dentists and health care workers would extend professional courtesy to their colleagues. This would take the form of various degrees of compensation, usually in the form of reduced fees. In general, if one professional extended the professional courtesy, it was reciprocated by the other. However this was over fifty years ago. Laws now restrict such activities which are viewed as inducement and even discriminatory. However, many still extend this courtesy, but certainly not with the same level of activity when my father practiced dentistry.

The ugly side of professional courtesy is when a physician or other professional uses their title and position to gain services from another colleague. This may be as subtle as calling to schedule an appointment for themself, a family member, or a friend or as blatant as insisting that a greater discount be given to them. Sadly, all of these situations still occur quite frequently, just not reported. The principles of professional courtesy extend far beyond our occupations. Any relationship that leverages one’s position as entitlement and extracting services could be lumped into this category. 

Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in filthy old clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? 

James 2:2-4 (NIV)

Have you not discriminated among yourselves? This statement is penetrating. The same word, discriminated, can be translated as showing favoritism, partiality, or making a distinction. God disapproves of all of these attitudes. Extending professional courtesy may seem innocent and even courteous but, like any of our actions, may be abused or misinterpreted. What is the answer? Once again, God supplies us the answer a few verses later. 

If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing right. But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. James 2:8-9 (NIV)

Courtesy must not be dependent upon one’s professional title or socio-economic status. Courtesy is showing God’s love by loving others as ourselves. When we do this, we show the same grace and mercy that God offers to us through faith and belief in His Son, Jesus Christ.


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

“When We Are All Gods Someday…” (Jude 1:4)

When I was in medical school, I sat through a lecture describing the physiological changes associated with hypertension. During the break, one of my classmates declared, “Wow! When we are all gods someday, it will be so great! No more disease, no more suffering!”

Several of my medical school classmates shifted uncomfortably, some rolled their eyes, and others just nodded and showed no facial expression.  Later, in casual conversation, one of my classmates turned to me and said, “Wow, didn’t know that Christians believe that!” I attempted to explain that most Christians do not believe the things he was saying. I then attempted to explain what Christians do believe but his eyes glazed over. “It’s all the same.” He was indiscriminately lumping what my classmate, who was not a Christian, was espousing as mainstream Christianity. I was frustrated but realized that many Christians, including myself, sometimes do the same with other religions. 

In college, I did take upper division religion classes, studying other major world religions. I am certainly not an expert but I know enough to recognize when a teaching is a fringe element and not part of their mainstream theology. Christians also need to be well versed with their main doctrinal teachings. To call oneself a Christian, it is critical to understand what one believes in. 

I say this because some ungodly people have wormed their way into your churches, saying that God’s marvelous grace allows us to live immoral lives. The condemnation of such people was recorded long ago, for they have denied our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. 

Jude 1:4 (NLT)

Some religions teach that when we die, we will all become gods and live with a Supreme God in Heaven. Unfortunately, that is not what the Bible teaches. However, pointing out the contradictions in the Bible may be a futile undertaking since some of these other religions have their own Bible translation which omits key phrases or adds words that support their doctrinal teachings. Yet, even within mainstream Christian churches, heretical teachings have crept in. Our Lord Jesus Christ warned of this. 

And many will turn away from me and betray and hate each other. And many false prophets will appear and will deceive many people. 

Matthew 24:10-11 (NLT)

When Jesus Christ spoke these words, He was warning His disciples of what will happen as we approach the end times, just before the beginning of the Tribulation and the appearance of the Antichrist. Although no one knows when this will begin, we do see many warning signs of wars and rumors of wars, famines, increasing natural disasters, and disease. In these dangerous times, all Christians must be absolutely sure of what they believe. False teachings and teachers are growing and we must be ready to defend our faith.


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

“I Don’t Read Your Comments!” (Romans 8:28)

“Wait, what? You don’t read my comments?”

“No, lots of times, it doesn’t say anything important, like saying you notified me of the diagnosis.”

“That’s true. That is an important medical legal statement to indicate that I discussed the case with you.“ The volume of my voice was rising. “But there are many times that I am giving you clarification about the diagnosis or making treatment recommendations.”

“Well you should put it in the diagnosis.”

“But it’s not a diagnosis. It is a comment, a clarification and is literally included in the next line below the diagnosis.” I was incredulous that I was listening to my colleague’s disclosure of how he reads my reports. 

In every diagnostic surgical pathology or dermatopathology report, beneath the diagnosis is a comment section. This section is optionally included at the discretion of the pathologist rendering the diagnosis. Diagnostic radiologists also add this section on their reports. The comment section clarifies the diagnosis and often offers treatment and management recommendations. It is as important as the diagnosis and should be given an equivalent degree of attention and scrutiny. 

The Bible is replete with many profound statements. Every statement is the Truth of God but there is a danger of misinterpretation if one takes statements out of context or does not read the complete exposition of the passage. An example of this is found in the following well known verses in the Bible, often quoted by believers and seekers alike.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good…

Romans 8:28 (NASB)

This is a true statement but most of the time, people only quote this first portion, particularly when people are experiencing difficult times. It IS a comforting statement but the Truth is expanded and clarified with the remainder of the verse.

…to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Romans 8:28 (NASB)

This verse was written for believers in Jesus Christ. Yes, God can bring out the best in every situation but He is bestowing a special blessing unto the believer who loves and obeys God. While it may happen, He is not promising that all problems will disappear and life will miraculously get better. The good that God promises is the assurance that if we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we will be transformed and conformed to His image. The sufferings and travails of this life are intended to teach us to grow in faith to become more like Jesus Christ. 

Like a diagnostic report, every word the Bible records is important. One cannot berry pick a verse or a portion of a verse simply because it sounds nice. Every verse must be interpreted by the context in which it was written and compared to the entire Bible. The Bible must interpret itself and be internally consistent. As the Apostle Peter wrote:

But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation…

2 Peter 1:20 (NASB)


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

Delighting The Customer (Zephaniah 3:17)

“I’ve never seen a business that delights customers that doesn’t succeed. What you want is that customer the next day, when they think, ‘Do I want to rent a car?’ or ‘Do I want to buy some furniture?’ What goes through their mind? You know, it’s the place where they had a great experience. I don’t know what I paid for this tie, but I will remember how I was treated when I bought it. I mean, you long forget about the price, but you never forget whether you had a good experience, or a poor experience, with the purchase experience. And you will have a hard time finding a person that’s had a wonderful experience, a delighted experience, in purchasing anything that isn’t going to come back. And similarly, if the memory is of rudeness, indifference, you know, whatever it may be, they’re never going to come back, and as a small business owner, and as you grow, you have to not only be able to project that interest in people’s well-being in delighting them yourself, but you have to do it through other people.”

Warren Buffet. 

The Sage of Omaha, Warren Buffet, gave this advice at an investor’s conference. One of the richest men in the world, Buffet’s stock picking abilities and acumen with recognizing hidden gems in companies that others ignore is legendary. The advice he gave could be summed up in one phrase, delight the customer with their buying experience. 

I completely agree with his advice. A casual perusal of one’s neighborhood and the businesses that are successful will confirm this. Of course, everything is magnified by social media and feedback is literally immediate and broadcast to potentially thousands of readers. Nonetheless, when a company delights the customer, such an experience often goes viral on social media, reinforcing Buffet’s statement. What about our relationship with God? Does God desire to give us a delightful experience?

For the LORD your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.

Zephaniah 3:17 (NLT)

Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desires. 

Psalms 37:4 (NLT)

God loves to delight in His Creation. Why? Love. Pure and overflowing love! It is not about achieving a profit, like a business, or attempting to win our devotion to Him. God loves us because of who He is. God is love and it is a love that we can never truly understand because our sinful nature prevents us from acknowledging and even understanding the complete expression of this love. The ultimate expression of God’s love is by sending His only Son to die on the Cross as payment for our sins. As the late Bible teacher, J. Vernon McGee, wrote, “It would break your heart and my heart if we knew how much He loves us!”

Delighting the customer? God delights in us for one reason, so that we may freely choose to return His love and accept His Son, Jesus Christ, as our Lord and Savior. 

Praise God!

Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

Peer Review (Romans 2:11)

Every academic institution and workplace has a peer review system in place. For obvious reasons the peer reviewers are kept anonymous. However, there is occasionally pushback from the party that was reviewed, particularly if the review was negative or less than flattering. Peer reviews are also found with publications. Here, another layer of anonymity must be added. Not only do the identities of the reviewers need to be masked, the names of the submitting authors and affiliated organizations should also be masked. Several studies have convincingly demonstrated that when reviewers know the names or institutions of the authors, there is a definite bias toward established authors or prestigious institutions. 

What about our spiritual lives? In contrast to life situations, we will always know that God is evaluating our actions. God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent. If we know this, why do we sometimes think God is unfair, even biased against us? If we still observe inequality and inequity in this world, we conclude that He cannot give us a fair review because He is not truly in control.

But as for me, I almost lost my footing. My feet were slipping, and I was almost gone. For I envied the proud when I saw them prosper despite their wickedness. 

Psalms 73:2-3 (NLT)

Like the Psalmist, we may look at the world around us and think that the wicked are rewarded and the good are punished. How can God be a just and fair Judge when He allows this to happen? What is the answer?

Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on earth. My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever. 

Psalms 73:25-26 (NLT)

In the end, the Psalmist understood that it was not about the possessions we gain in this life nor is it about the outward appearance of wealth and success. Our existence is not limited to our life on this earth. Our souls are eternal and if we have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we will forever live with God. The riches of this life cannot begin to compare with the riches of Heaven. Why should we attempt to gain the world only to lose our soul?

Whatever the appearance of bias that God may have, the inescapable Truth is this. 

For there is no partiality with God. 

Romans 2:11 (NASB)

Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses

Twosday (Proverbs 29:18)


I was signing a report when I realized the uniqueness of the date. I yelled out to my staff to which I received a variety of answers. “It’s Twosday!”  “Yes, special day!” or “It means good fortune!” Intrigued, I researched this a bit more. 

At the least, it is a numerical palindrome, a number that is read the same forward and backward. It is also a unique date in our lifetime since the next time this will appear will be in 200 years. Restaurants and wedding chapels had specials for those who availed of their services, particularly between the time of 2:00 to 2:22 PM! Now, the speculation begins. 

Some cultures believe this is an auspicious number since good things come in pairs. Numerologists are excited since the number 2 represents cooperation and harmony. Furthermore, the number 22 is considered a master number, symbolic of many people coming together to work together.  And let’s not leave out the mystics who believe the number 222 represents an angel number. Depending upon the individual, it could be interpreted that angels are attempting to give one insight about the future course of their life.  

Aside from the fact that it is a numerical palindrome, there is no other significance to this date. However, people are always searching for revelation and direction and may attach meaning and significance to numbers. This search to find meaning may continue with their careers or possessions. Sadly, it may also careen out of control with drugs and crime. 

Without revelation people run wild, but one who follows divine instruction will be happy. 

Proverbs 29:18 (CSB)

Thousands of years ago, the Bible recognized this need in all of us. Only God can provide true revelation and in the absence of His guidance, people literally run wild. God created us and only He knows the way to satisfy our needs. Yet, we have chosen to reject His guidance and create our own meaning and interpretations to explain the world around us. 


It is a unique date and it may get us a discount for a meal. However, it will not give us direction in our lives. Only Almighty God can do this.


Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.

Complete Blogs on WordPress

Complete Blogs Indexed by Bible Verses