love

The Ones God Never Casts Aside

This broken world we weren’t designed for, can leave us faint-hearted. God did not create us to experience things that cut, sting, wound, and hurt. Join Pastor Frank in this short video to discover how Jesus treats His faint-hearted children.


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The Ones God Never Casts Aside

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I remind people all the time that we're living in a world we were never designed to live in. We were designed for the Garden of Eden, a paradise. If you hadn't noticed, this is anything but paradise! Things happen to us that we were never designed for. Things that cut, sting, wound, hurt, and cause us, in a very real way, to bleed out. We've become what the Bible calls faint-hearted.

The word “faint-hearted” is the fascinating Greek word, “Oligopsuchos,” which literally means “small-souled.” 

We've atrophied from what we were originally designed to be. But that’s where Jesus comes in!

I love what Jesus said in Matthew 12, quoting Isaiah, He said, “A bruised reed He will not break…” Matthew 12:20a (NIV) But what does that mean? 

In the ancient world, they would take reeds, carve them, and put holes in them to make flutes. If you bruised, bent, or broke the reed, it wouldn't play. So they’d throw it away because there were a bunch of other reeds out there. 

Listen, my friend, God will never treat you as a bruised reed. He will never say, “This one’s no good anymore! There's lots of reeds I can use.” That's not our God. 

He will never cast off the bruised reed!

In the same verse Jesus says, “...And a smoldering wick He will not put out…” Matthew 12:20b (NASB) What is He saying to us? 

Well, to make a lamp in the ancient world, they would put in oil, and they would put a wick in the oil. When the wick began to burn down, it wouldn't give off much light. It was no big deal. They would extinguish it, throw it away, and get another wick. There were plenty of wicks out there. 

What does Jesus say about a smoldering wick? He says, “I will never extinguish it!” 

My friends, it’s time for the Church to be the hands and feet of Jesus. It’s time for the church to reach out to those smoldering wicks, those bruised reeds, those small-souled people...and love on them! Be with them. Live with them. 

It’s time to teach the faint-hearted who they really are and how much God loves them! 

Tell the faint-hearted that He will never, ever, cast them aside!

This is the love of our great God. This is the love of Jesus!


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How to Survive in a World You Can't Keep Up With

The pain of this world can leave you asking if there is anyone who loves or accepts you. In today’s short video, Frank reveals the beautiful heart of your Father, who never stops fighting for you, and who never leaves you nor forsakes you. 


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Why John 3:16 Is Only Half the Story

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Many of us are familiar with John 3:16. It’s a very prevalent verse, and one that many adults can still recite from back in their Sunday School days! 

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16 (NASB)

From this verse, we’ve developed the mantra, “Jesus died for my sins.” We conclude that He laid down His life for my sins so that I could go to heaven. And that’s wonderful - but now what do we do? 

The answer is found in a verse that’s not so prevalent in our modern church. 

Corresponding to John 3:16 is a verse found in 1 John 3:16. The verse in 1 John picks up on the thought from the verse in John: that love was manifested to us when He laid His Life down for us. The difference is, John doesn’t stop there! He adds these words, 

“We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” 

1 John 3:16 (NASB)

Again this verse tells us how Jesus laid His life down for us, but in addition, the result and natural byproduct of what that means to us is revealed. He reminds us of what Jesus first did for us and adds, “and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” Those are our marching orders until He returns, beloved: Just as Jesus laid down His life for us, so we lay our lives down for others. 

We do this so that others can enter into His love and that others can go to heaven. 1 John 4 declares that people have never seen God, but they can see the love that we have and then find God. Paul put it this way, 

We are the living letters from God telling the world how much God loves them. 

Ours is an “others” centered faith; we focus not just on what we receive, but on how God, through us, can allow others to receive as we lay down our lives. 

My friend, you might want to memorize these two verses and put them together. I think it's fascinating that they both carry chapter 3 verse 16, don’t you? It's almost like the Holy Spirit was saying, don't miss this one! 

Jesus dying for your sins is a wonderful message, but complete the message by including that just as Jesus died, we too, are to lay down our lives for others. 


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This One Name Unlocks Your Entire Identity

Do you wonder who you are? Or how God sees you? In today’s short video, Frank reveals the supreme new identity God has given us. Discover today, who you are to Father and just how much you mean to Him.


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This One Name Unlocks Your Entire Identity

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One of the great glories of the New Testament is the revelation that we have been given a new name. The Bible says we’ve been given a brand new identity. 

You see, before Christ, we were known as sinners, the lost, rebels. But the glory of the New Testament reveals our new and wonderful multifaceted identities. 

I believe the name we’re all most familiar with is “saints.” But we're also called ambassadors, we’re called the living letters of God, the children of God, and the sons of God. We're called soldiers and farmers, and the list could go on and on. And while those are all wonderful names by which to identify ourselves, in my heart of hearts, I think there's one name that is above all the other names. 

There is one identity, that I believe, is greater than all the others. 

In Scripture, John calls us “beloved” which is “agapétos” in the Greek and it literally means “those loved by God.” I think it’s so insightful that this name, this great identity, was written about mostly by the Apostle John, because John was known as “the disciple that Jesus loved.” A name given to John, not because Jesus loved him especially, but because John marveled, was stunned by, and never let go of the fact that he was loved by God.  

Being called His “beloved” is the supreme identity that God has given to us.

I call it our supreme identity because all the other identities, or names He calls us by, are birthed firstly out of His love. 

It's because He loved us that He made us saints, it's because He loved us that He made us His ambassadors. It's because He loved us that He adopted us into His family as His own children. 

We are the beloved of God. 

“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.”  1 John 3:16a (NIV) My friend, He stretched out His arms and He said, I love YOU this much. 

Hold your head high in this dark world, you are the beloved of God!

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The Gift God Only Gives His Children

As parents we do very special things for our children because we love them so much - and God is no different with us! In today’s short clip, Frank shares the beautiful gift that God promises His children. May you experience His joy today!


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Why Knowing About God Isn’t Enough

Do you know about God, or do you know Him? Beloved, God has so much more for you than simply knowing facts and history about Him—He wants you to experience Him! In this short clip, Frank reveals why the Lord Jesus Christ came to live inside us.


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Why Knowing About God Isn’t Enough

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There are two Greek words in the Bible for knowing. First there is the Greek word oida. It means “to know in the mind;” it means “to know the facts.” But there’s a second word for knowing that we really need to understand and it’s gnosco. Gnosco means “to know by experience.”

Let’s explore the difference between these two words. I can’t come to you and say, “I know (gnosco) Abraham Lincoln,”  I don’t know him by experience. I have no relationship with him. The word I would use here would be oida. “I know Abraham Lincoln.” I’ve read the history books and I know the facts about his life. So which word do we find in the New Testament when it talks about us knowing God? It’s not oida—it’s gnosco. This is so very important because so many people live in oida. They know about God, they read the Bible, they know the facts, they study the history, and they know about God but they don’t know Him. Do you realize how sad that is?

Let me illustrate this again. I don’t want to know about a kiss. I don’t want to oida a kiss. Oida is the facts: two mouths coming together, exchanging tongues and saliva fluid. Yuck. I don’t want to know that. I want to experience it! Isn’t that strange, especially after that definition? But you want to experience it too, because that’s the first act of giving yourself to another human being and receiving another human being. And that’s gnosco, my friends, the Lord Jesus Christ came to live inside of us. Why? Well, so He could empower us, so we could experience Him so that we could know Him, not by mind only, but by experiencing His love.

I don’t want to know about love. I want to be loved, don’t you? And that’s why the Holy Spirit came inside of you. So you could experience the love, grace, mercy, faithfulness, kindness, and goodness of God and know Him (gnosco) by experience.

What a great God. Have a great day!

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Finding Shelter in God

The book of Psalms tells us that we will “dwell in the house of the Lord forever”(23:6). We will live with Him, in Him. He's going to be our address, our home. 

How many of you saw the movie The Lone Survivor with Mark Wahlberg? In that movie, Marcus Luttrel is hurt, and a Pakistani Muslim takes him into his own home and then defends him with his own life. They call this custom the Pashtunwali Code and the idea is when I'm your host I'm willing to lay down my life for you. 

There is amazing archeological evidence, which you can Google yourself, which shows that some of the tribes of Israel went into Afghanistan and that the Pashtunwali Code may have originated from Hebrew custom and culture. But regardless of where the code comes from this is exactly what God does for us. He invites us into Himself, to dwell in Him, and then he defends us with His Life.  Let's think about that. God says, “I will be your host, and I will protect you so much and I am so much for you that I will lay down my life for you.” Amazing!


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Knowing This Habit of God Will Change Your Life

Hurt, betrayal, and loss abound on any given day of our lives, and we can feel very alone and forgotten in the midst of it all. Beloved, know that Father hears you, and cares about every tear you cry. He has not forgotten you. This is a short video you won’t want to miss! May you feel Father’s arms around you as Frank reveals what God is in the habit of doing for His children.


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Glorious News for Mankind

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In the final analysis, there are really only two “religions” in the world. First, there is the religion of Human Achievement; this is the religion that all mankind was placed into the moment Adam ate from the wrong tree, the tree of good and evil, or the tree of right and wrong. This tree says "Tell me what to do and I will do it. Tell me what not to do and I will not do it." Of course, the huge assumption is that we will be able to pull it off, and of course, there isn't, and never has been, a man who can do that.

Romans 3:23 tells us that, "ALL of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God." So the religion of Human Achievement, no matter what emblem it falls under or what name it is known by, emphasizes what man does in order to merit life and acceptance from God. 

There is, however, another “religion” – the religion of Divine Accomplishment. Here the emphasis is not on what man must do for God, but what God “has done” for man – hence the name Divine Accomplishment. God has done it! It is finished! This is the most glorious news available to man! God offers what He has done for man, to man as a gift; the only “requirement” for man is simply to humble himself and open up his arms and receive the gift by faith. A gift given is not necessarily a gift that has been received. That is where faith comes in, and that is in Hebrews it says, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God!”

What is your religion? Is your religion the religion of Human Achievement, a religion that is all about you, and all that you have done and are doing in order to try and achieve merit before God? Or have you entered into the religion of Divine Accomplishment, where God loves you so much that He has done it all for you! The choice is yours!

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A Heart's That Good

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I want to tell you one of my favorite stories.

A young couple moved into a new neighborhood. The next morning, while eating breakfast, the young woman noted that their neighbor’s laundry, which was hung out to dry, was not very clean and added that the poor woman must not know how to wash clothes properly. Her husband looked on but remained silent.

Every time her neighbor would hang out her clothes to dry, the young woman would make the same comment that her neighbor’s laundry was not very clean and that the poor woman must not know how to wash clothes properly.

One morning, however, the young woman was surprised to see a nice clean wash on the line and said to her husband, “Look at those clean clothes next door! Someone must have taught her how to wash clothes. I wonder who got to her?” The husband responded, “Actually, I got up early this morning and washed our windows.”

Unfortunately, this is all too often a very common experience. We as human beings spend so much time thinking negatively about our neighbor, that we fail to see the negative in our own lives. This is something we should especially avoid when thinking of our Christian brethren.

In the first letter to the Thessalonians Paul, who had to leave Thessalonica because of persecution, wrote to them that he wanted to get back to them but was unable to do so. It would have been very easy for the Thessalonians to listen to the negative voice of the enemy and think that Paul did not value them, or did not have the time for them, or perhaps that he was too busy for them.

Timothy, who had been sent to Thessalonica when Paul could not go there, returned with the news that the Thessalonians ALWAYS had good remembrances of them. They knew that Paul had a new heart and a good heart, (Ezekiel 36:25-26) and so they chose to believe that Paul had the best in mind for them always.

If only we would choose to believe the best about other people. How much needless conflict might we be able to avoid if we chose to believe that the heart of a believer is always good, instead of giving in to negative imaginations? Remember, Paul said in 1 Corinthians that love believes and hopes all things!

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The Balance of Love

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The great American entrepreneur John D. Rockefeller stated, “I will pay more for the ability to deal with people than any other ability under the sun.” The most powerful leadership tool available is the ability to get along with other people; to be able to relate to people and not only to understand people but encourage them. The apostle Paul certainly fit this bill.

In the second chapter of the first letter to the Thessalonians, Paul states that he cared for them like a nursing mother gently cares for her own children. There is nothing so dear as the love of a nursing mother. Paul also went on though, to declare that he was like a father to the Thessalonians. In that context, he affirmed that in the role of a father he exhorted the Thessalonians; simply put, he spoke the hard words, the strong words that we all need to hear sometimes.

I love that he chose the word "parakaleo," which literally means to "come alongside." What a great lesson for us to learn! When we have to speak those hard words to the ones we love, those words are best spoken not with a finger in another’s face, but instead with an arm around them, communicating our love and acceptance of them, even if we do not necessarily accept their behavior.

Further, Paul instantly added that he encouraged them. It is not enough to just exhort others. If all we do is exhort people, we will soon have very few friends because they will run when they see us coming. Paul, however, balanced his hard words with loving words; words of encouragement. It is the same word used when Jesus comforted the family of Lazarus. It is the word "hekostan," and it means the "tender, compassionate, restorative empathy given to one who is struggling, burdened, or heartbroken."

Paul knew that in a very harsh world it's easy for someone when they hear a negative word, to become discouraged. He was quick to add words of encouragement, quick to play the role of a cheerleader and stress that he believed in them and anticipated that the best would be expressed by and through them.

Paul is a great example for us in terms of dealing with people. May we love others enough to say the strong words, but care enough for them to speak the encouraging words as well.

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All Things Work Together For Good

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1 John 4 says, “God IS love.” It’s a very important verb choice. He didn't say God HAS love. If He HAD love, He might NOT have love. Instead, he uses the verb "is," the state of "is-ness," this is one's state of being,  the part of you that cannot be changed. God IS love, and He made us a promise in Romans 8:28 that “All things will work together for good to those that love God and are called according to His purposes.” This is true even for the worst choice ever made by a man in all of history. A choice that's even worse than the one Adam made two-thousand years ago. 

My friends, Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. He had healed the sick, raised the dead, fed the poor, heralded the Kingdom of God and proclaimed that in Him there would be forgiveness of sins and life eternal. The people hailed Him as the Messiah, but at that point, the Jewish leadership got a little envious. John 11 reveals that they knew this man did miracles. Did you hear that? Unbelieving, rebellious men, admitted that miracles were being done. These were not Jesus’ followers; these were people who hated Him, and they acknowledged that miracles were being done. The problem for them was that if they let Him keep doing what He was doing, all of Israel would believe in Him, and the key is in their next phrase, “We’ll be out of a job.” 

My friends, do you know what really killed Jesus? It was job security. And so they held an illegal trial, trumped up false charges against Him that He was inciting rebellion against Rome and turned Him over to Rome for permission to have Him crucified. The problem was, the Roman Governor found Him innocent of all charges, but the Roman Sanhedrin continued to stir up the people. Pilot was afraid of a riot. If he could not govern well, he'd be out of a job. He realized there was a custom in Israel where they would release one prisoner every year. Coming up with an idea, he made a choice, and the choice was offered to the crowd: Jesus or Barabbas. 

Barabbas, the text says, was an insurrectionist, a murderer and a thief. The choice before them, my friends, was simple; you can have the righteous and innocent Son of God, OR you can have the murderer. What will you do with Jesus? And they chose Barabbas. They chose a murderer over the Messiah, and they screamed for Pilot to have Jesus, who had been declared innocent, crucified. 

I don't know if you've ever thought about the fact that Pilot had already declared Jesus innocent. Jesus not only could have been set free, but He should have been set free. The people CHOSE to have Jesus crucified, and Pilot CHOSE to let it happen. There were so many poor choices made, and those choices had horrible, horrible consequences. 

Pilot washed his hands to try and declare himself innocent; that it was not his choice to crucify Jesus. At that point, the people cried out, “His blood be on us and our children.” They made the most horrible choice that man has ever made, to crucify the Lord of Glory... But God! But God! See my friends; it was a true statement; His blood was on them, it was their choice. But because of God, his blood was FOR them. 

In Matthew 20:28, Jesus said, “I'm coming to give my life as a ransom.” In Matthew 26:28, He said, “This is my blood which is shed for many for the forgiveness of sins.” Do you realize my friends, that our incredible God used their choice against Jesus, as a consequence, but not as a consequence against them, but as a consequence for them. It is the greatest fulfillment of Romans 8:28 in all of history, “That all things will work together for good.” The one they killed shed His blood for them that they might be offered a second chance choice to place their faith in Him and secure life eternal and forgiveness.

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Being Right vs Being Loving

Freedom is promised when we know and walk in God’s truth. But how will others share in this same freedom if we neglect to tell them what we know to be right and correct them when they’re wrong? Find out in this short video what we need to be right about as Frank shares how we can love one another even when we disagree and what evidence should be seen in our lives as we walk in the truth of the Grace of God.

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Sin Isn't The Supreme Issue

When Adam sinned, God's heart was grieved - of course it was! What grieved His heart most is what man would have to experience fear, grief, sorrow, anxiety, guilt, shame, and isolation as a result.

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Pursuing the Truth Giver

Doctrine was NEVER intended to be an end in itself, but a means to lead us to the Person of Jesus!

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Apprenticed In Love

The only One who knows how to love is God, and so we must be students, learners, apprentices - receiving from Him the love that only He can give.

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