Posts Tagged ‘Lord Jesus Christ’

Choices: The undermining daughter-in-law dilemma

December 10, 2017

I wasn’t aware of how pervasive this problem is until I read the article linked below. It was very disheartening to read, “The dynamics of a family can be torn apart by selfish choices made by adult children.”

In the past, I thought that the Millennial adult children of Baby-Boomer parents often got “a bad rap” when it comes to discussions of their behavior towards their parents.  Many of these grown-up adult children are married and having children of their own.  Those adult children who have been brought up in a Christian home, generally still have much love, respect, and gratefulness for their now-aging parents; and all are enjoying the great relationships being developed between parents, grandparents and grandchildren.

However, when a son marries and is then taken in by the influence of say, an undermining daughter-in-law; it can cause huge damage, sorrow, and grief upon the parents that he once may have loved, respected and honored throughout his life. The situation can be especially egregious when this type of daughter-in-law claims to be a Christian.


Author Anne Kathryn Killinger decided to share her grief with others as well as shed some light on the subject. She contacted numerous grandparents who lamented of similar problems. Killinger shares these stories in her new book, “A Son is a Son Till He Gets a Wife: How Toxic Daughters-in-law Destroy Families.”

Many daughters-in-law today are selfish, possessive and narcissistic, and will not rest until they have divorced their husbands from the parents who raised them. It’s a deceptively gradual process, and half the time, you don’t even realize it has happened until it’s too late. It starts with her taking all of the phone calls for the family, or the canceling of trips to visit family. Soon, phone calls go unreturned, and finally you realize that your son is no longer your son. He’s just some other woman’s husband.”

I read several of the reviews and comments about Killinger’s book.  About 9 were positive, with many readers of the comments indicating that the reviews were helpful.  One estranged mother wrote:

Did your loving son change once he found her? This book will help ease your pain by educating you that your son is the victim of mind control and that you are not alone in your suffering. This book is a start to helping you understand what is happening to your precious son.

There were also some very negative reviews and nasty comments directed at the author.

Each person’s experience is not the same.  Some people choose to remain suffering in silence.  Others, want to find ways to ease the pain.

I have not read the book, but since it was referenced in the article I wanted to let readers know that I can’t recommend it to everyone.  However, for the purposes of this post and those parents who have been blindsided by sudden estrangement and are so grieved and sad that their son will no longer talk with them or see them; perhaps that book might help them see that they are not alone.

Surprisingly, a therapist who was mentioned in the article suggests that, “this trend is another result of the pampered Baby Boomer generation.”

The author of the article says, “Perhaps.”

Yes.  It might depend upon individual upbringing and experiences.

I’m wondering if that therapist is making the claim that the Baby Boomer generation parents coddled their children too much and gave them everything that they needed if they had the means to do so?  Or, could it have been that they were given “their way” too often; even at the expense of allowing them to think that they are more superior than others?  Is that why she is blaming that today’s young people project a certain attitude of superiority, act impatient, are disdainful, and highly critical?

The article takes a look at “impatient tolerance.”

Some daughters-in-law “tolerate” their husband’s family and this impatient tolerance is apparent. It is uncomfortable to be in the presence of someone you feel is only tolerating you.

[Perhaps] power and control are what these controlling daughters-in-law desire, but why do the sons allow this to take place?

Good question!  Why do the sons allow this to take place?  There could be a myriad of reasons.  Perhaps the wife gave him an ultimatum like, “it’s either me or your parents.”  Perhaps the wife has parents of her own who have encouraged their daughter to get her husband to abandon his parents, simply because they don’t like them?  One of the worst examples that I have found about reasons why a son could be brain-washed into abandoning his parents is for so-called “religious” reasons.

A family and their daughter who hold to superior “feelings” that their religious beliefs are higher than the son’s family’s religious beliefs can use wretched “counseling” techniques in order to convince him to break his bond with his parents.  If they are a genuine Christian family, then why would they encourage their son-in-law to ignore God’s Commandment to “Honor thy father and thy mother?”

For example, note what this mom had to say in her response letter to her son who requested in an email not to be contacted by his parents anymore:

“What you wrote sounds like thoughts that came from someone else; someone with the intention to manipulate you under a false narrative and under the guise of convincing you that they are “counseling” you to realize that all the years spent with your parents have been detrimental for your life. This is what people in a disordered state of mind do in order to make someone like you think that your lifelong relationship with your parents and/or family members are totally bad and need to be completely discarded from their lives!  Reminds me of what a “quasi-religious organization using devious psychological techniques to gain and control adherents” would do!”

Someone who thinks of themselves as a “self-taught counselor” who twists Scripture from its truthful and genuine meaning and uses “devious psychological techniques” to control someone is guilty of being a false prophet.  Note what Jesus warns in this verse:

Unchecked Copy BoxMat 7:15“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.

The “quasi-religious organization” quote above is another way to describe a cult!

Let’s go back to the article and reveal a quote from Killinger’s book:

Killinger and her husband John, a minister, believe that over time, withholding daughters-in-law have implemented a form of mind control techniques on their husbands and their children. “The same techniques that apply to the manipulation of a person in a group or cult, according to all the authorities on mind control, apply to individuals with ‘battered person syndrome.'”

Wow!  “Battered person syndrome.”  Could it be that a person may not even recognize when he or she is being battered by someone; especially when it’s someone they love?   I think so.  I have an elderly relative who has chosen to quietly suffer within such a bad relationship for years by her single, angry, and manipulative son.  Yet, when evidence of such abuse is pointed out by others, this particular mom refuses to recognize it.  I’m so sad for her!  However, this has been her choice for many years and apparently, no one can talk her out of it.

Back to the topic.  Sadly, many of the parents of adult married children who have suffered from “withholding daughters-in-law who have implemented a form of mind control technique on their husbands” have also lost access to their grandchildren.

From the article:

“Wives of male children have the supreme power to withhold this access.

This is truly a grievous and very sad state of affairs.

From the article:

“Grandparents provide a balance in grandchildren’s lives that no one else can replicate.  Studies have shown that multi-generational contact between children and their grandparents provide a special unconditional love and nurturing which is healthy for children.”

So, what does God’s Word have to say about all of this?

David Guzik at Blue Letter Bible has a great commentary regarding the fifth commandment of God:

B. Six commandments regarding our conduct before God and man.

1. (Exo 20:12) The fifth commandment: Honor your father and your mother.

“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.”

a. Honor your father and your mother: This command is wise and good, because honor for parents is an essential building block for the stability and health of all society. If the younger generations are constantly at war with older generations, the foundations of society will be destroyed.

i. To honor one’s parents includes to prize them, to care for them, and to show respect or reverence to them. The command is given to children, but not for only while they are children. “This is not a popular doctrine in our modern world, where youth is worshipped, and old age dreaded or despised. The result is the folly by which men or women strive to remain eternally youthful, only to find it an impossible task.” (Cole)

ii. Jesus used the way the Pharisees interpreted this commandment as an example of how one might keep the law with a limited interpretation yet violate the spirit of the commandment (Matthew 15:3-6).




b. That your days may be long: In Ephesians 6:2 Paul repeated this command, emphasizing the promise stated here, that your days may be long upon the land. Rebellion is costly, and many have paid a high price personally for their rebellion against their parents.

i. “A good child lengtheneth his father’s days; therefore God promiseth to lengthen his.” (Trapp)

Hat tips to all links.


Destroy This Temple

April 18, 2017

Someone had a question about what Jesus meant when he said:

Jhn 2:19

Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”

David Guzik has a great commentary on John 2.

I believe that it is often best to read the entire chapter (as well a commentary in link above) in order to understand John 2:19.

Note that the chapter begins with the wedding at Cana, where Jesus turned water into wine.

Guzik writes:

This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him.

f. This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee: This beginning of signs in the Gospel of John is a miracle of conversion, from the old ways of law, ceremony and purification to the new life of Jesus.

It is interesting to note that the money-changers, where Gentiles were selling wares, was on the outer court of the Temple. This was the only place where Gentiles could enter.

Guzik excerpt:

B. The temple cleansed.

1. (Jhn 2:13-17) Jesus drives out the moneychangers and sellers of expensive “approved” sacrificial animals.

a. The Passover of the Jews was at hand: Jerusalem would be crowded with thousands of visitors coming at Passover. The temple mount would be particularly crowded, and Jesus saw many doing business in the outer courts of the temple.

b. When He had made a whip of cords: When Jesus drove those doing business out of the temple courts, He did not do it in a flash of anger. He carefully took the time to make a whip of cords, and thought carefully about what He would do.

c. He drove them all out … poured out the changers’ money and overturned tables: Why did this offend Jesus so much? The outer courts of the temple were the only place where Gentiles could come and worship. This area (the court of the Gentiles) was made into house of merchandise.

i. Matthew, Mark, and Luke each describe another cleansing of the temple Jesus performed, towards the end of His earthly ministry. In both cases, the presence of these merchants in the temple courts spoiled the only place Gentiles could pray. In addition, their dishonesty made their presence all the worse.

d. John began with a miracle of conversion (changing water into wine). Then he shows Jesus with a work of cleansing (the cleansing of the temple). This is always how Jesus works in His people: conversion, then cleansing. [bold mine]

2. (Jhn 2:18-22) Jesus speaks of a new temple, and its destiny. [bold and italics mine]

So the Jews answered and said to Him, “What sign do You show to us, since You do these things?” Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. ” Then the Jews said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” But He was speaking of the temple of His body. Therefore, when He had risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this to them; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had said.

a. What sign do You show to us, since You do these things? This wasn’t necessarily a bad question. Anyone who drove out the merchants from the temple courts claimed the authority to do it. The Jews wanted to know if Jesus really had this authority. The problem is that they demanded a sign from Jesus to prove it.

b. Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up: Jesus speaks here of the temple of His body. He probably even gestured to Himself as He said this. Jesus knew that these religious leaders would attempt to destroy His body, but He also knew that they would not succeed.

i. The body of Jesus is still a temple (Ephesians 2:19-22; 1 Peter 2:5).

c. I will raise it up: Who raised Jesus from the dead? Jesus says that He will raise Himself, despite the teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses and others. This was a claim no mere man could make, a claim repeated dramatically in John 10:18.

Hat tip:

Blue Letter Bible – David Guzik Commentary on John 2

Where Sin Abounded, Grace Abounded Much More

June 13, 2015

Yesterday I had a lively conversation with someone special in my life about the homosexual “marriage” issue.  She has been very busy with her own life and doesn’t usually watch the news.  I informed her that there have been lawsuits filed by homosexual activists who felt “discriminated against” because certain Christian business owners refused to participate in homosexual “marriage” ceremonies.

Even though hundreds of flower shops (and/or bakeries in other cases) would be willing to service them, the two homosexual men (in the case of Baronelle Stutzman) decided to file a lawsuit against her. In fact, several flower shops offered to provide flowers free of charge to the two men! But that wasn’t enough to satisfy them. They needed to go through with a lawsuit in order to “teach her a lesson,” run her out of business, destroy her livelihood and possibly even take away her home!

I ask, where is the tolerance in that?

I shared the story of Baronelle Stutzman which can be seen in the video below.

I explained most of what was shown in the above video to her, and she did say that what was happening to Stutzman “wasn’t right.”

I was glad that she ended up understanding what is at stake in the homosexual “marriage” agenda vs. the freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of association rights of Christian business owners.

Ultimately, the decision made by the Supreme Court will come down in favor of either religious liberty or “special rights” for the homosexual legal agenda.

I told her that I fear for this country if the Supreme Court makes a sweeping decision (like Roe. vs. Wade regarding abortion becoming legal in all 50 states in 1973) that demands the recognition of homosexual marriage without any freedom of religion, speech and association exclusions for those with religious objections towards being involved in such “ceremonies.”

This morning, I awoke with the following thought in my mind.

“The day that Jesus is not close to me is a day that doesn’t exist.”

It was very comforting to me! I think that it was a message from the Holy Spirit of God to help me focus on Jesus and to remind me that I am “not of this world;” just as Christ stated in John 8.

I know that the promises of the Bible are real and enduring. No matter what transpires in this fallen world, God is with me…always! And no one can ever take away my salvation which has been obtained through Jesus Christ!

Rom 5:1

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have [fn] peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

Rom 5:2

through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Rom 5:3

And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance;

Rom 5:4

and perseverance, character; and character, hope.

Rom 5:5

Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

Rom 5:6

For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.

Rom 5:7

For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die.

Rom 5:8

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Rom 5:9

Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.

Rom 5:10

For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

Rom 5:11

And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

Rom 5:12

Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—

Rom 5:13

(For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.

Rom 5:14

Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come.

Rom 5:15

But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.

Rom 5:16

And the gift is not like that which came through the one who sinned. For the judgment which came from one offense resulted in condemnation, but the free gift which came from many offenses resulted in justification.

Rom 5:17

For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)

Rom 5:18

Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.

Rom 5:19

For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

Rom 5:20

Moreover the law entered that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more,

Rom 5:21

so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.



I wrote this blog post late last night. This morning, I found a new Christian blog that had a great post which explains what Barronelle Stutzman mentioned in the video regarding Christ being the Groom and the church (all born-again Christians – not a specific denomination or building) being His Bride.

Grace Life Thoughts: Thinking About Marriage.

Read it all at the link!

Here is an important excerpt:

Jesus Christ often taught about marriage during His ministry on earth during the early part of the 1st century AD. The Pharisees used the issue of divorce from marriage as a way to trick Jesus. Jesus supported the traditional definition of marriage from the Genesis account in His answer to the Pharisees.

“Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.’ They said to Him, ‘Why then did Moses command to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?’ He said to them, ‘Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” Matthew 19:4-9

Jesus added the words, ‘Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate,’ to the understanding of marriage. Many pastors still use those words during marriage ceremonies.

Marriage, from a biblical perspective, is between a human male and human female. Two life events can dissolve a marriage: death and sexual immorality.

“A wife is bound by law as long as her husband lives; but if her husband dies, she is at liberty to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 7:39

“And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” Matthew 19:9

Since God invented marriage with its true meaning and physical boundaries, God is the only Being who can change marriage. Will He change marriage? Here’s how Jesus answered a group of Sadducees who tried to trick Him with a question about marriage and the resurrection. Keep in mind that the Sadducees didn’t even believe in a physical resurrection, which makes their evil intent even more obvious.

“The same day the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Him and asked Him, saying: ‘Teacher, Moses said that if a man dies, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife and raise up offspring for his brother. Now there were with us seven brothers. The first died after he had married, and having no offspring, left his wife to his brother. Likewise the second also, and the third, even to the seventh. Last of all the woman died also. Therefore, in the resurrection, whose wife of the seven will she be? For they all had her.’ Jesus answered and said to them, ‘You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in heaven. But concerning the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was spoken to you by God, saying, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.’ And when the multitudes heard this, they were astonished at His teaching.” Matthew 22:23-33

God designed ‘male to female’ marriage for human beings on earth. God designed no ‘human marriage’ in the resurrection from the dead. So, is that the end of marriage? It’s only purpose is for human males and human females on earth? After death there’s nothing more to the meaning of ‘real’ marriage?

There is much, much more to the meaning of marriage and it is in that ‘reality’ we find the eternal meaning and value of marriage.

Mystical Marriage

‘Mystical marriage’ is that aspect of marriage that is both spiritual and mysterious.

“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.” Ephesians 5:22-33

The reduction of marriage to just a ‘legal’ ceremony misses the point of the ‘reality’ of human male and human female marriage. It’s about Jesus Christ and His Church. As Paul wrote, ‘This is a great mystery.’ The reason for ‘purity’ in marriage (human male and human female) is because of the purity of the relationship between Jesus Christ and the Church. True ‘marriage’ can never be about human male to human male or human female to human female because it does not display the ‘great mystery’ concerning ‘Christ and the church.’ If you are a Christian and disagree with that statement, please read Ephesians 5:22-33 again. It is a ‘mystery,’ but God has chosen to reveal many of His mysteries to His children.

[You can learn more about how and why God reveals ‘mysteries’ to His children by reading Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, especially Chapter 3]

The ‘Marriage’ Debate

Understanding this ‘great mystery’ does not make the ‘marriage debate’ easier for Christians. In fact, it makes it more difficult because we are dealing with a great many people who do not believe in God or at least not the God of the Bible. That tension is to be expected with non-theists.

However, what is not to be expected is the debate about marriage among Christians. Even though physical and mystical marriage are explained clearly in Scripture, there are many Christians who disagree with God’s purpose and design. Why is that? Why would any Christian disagree with God’s purpose and design for something as important as marriage? Especially a truth that has eternal implications?

It is my hope that all Christians will ‘think’ seriously about God’s purpose and design for marriage and agree with Him. It is vital that Christ’s Church be unified on the ‘reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church.’ Amen.

Update on 6/18/15:

Western Journalism: Legalized Gay Marriage Will Have This Huge Impact That No One Thought About

Remembering Dad

May 30, 2014

photo dad age 19

Photo:  My Dad, Walter Leroy, at age 19 when he entered into the Army Air Corp.  He was a member  of the WWII Greatest Generation.


I know.  This post could be considered “too early” for Father’s Day, and you would be correct.  However, I am writing it today because it has been 19 years since my dear dad passed away on May 30, 1995.  Of course, I still miss him to this very day.  However, I want to share a very special and spiritually uplifting  event that happened while my dad was so ill with mesothelioma (inoperable lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure) in January, 1995.

The following information that I am about to share is more personal “proof” (if one wants to call it that), of why my faith in and  through  being born again in Jesus Christ  has been strengthened over more than 20 years of Bible study.  What’s more, we can add this testimony of a spiritually given gift to what was previously shared in my former post,  Why I Believe In Jesus Christ.

Permit me to backtrack a bit.

In the summer of 1994, my mom and dad were visiting my family and I here in California. As I mentioned above, my dad had been diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer (due to asbestos exposure) and had been going through chemotherapy treatments. These treatments made him weak.  So, we didn’t do the usual sight seeing excursions as we had done during visits in the past. In fact, the one day we did go out, he quickly became very tired walking around a shopping area in LaJolla.

When we came back home, my discussion with my dad turned towards God. He abruptly said, “God is punishing me.”

This shocked me at first, because I wasn’t sure if my dad ever even thought about the things of God. He hardly ever went to church when I was a kid and I often worried about his relationship with “the Man upstairs” as he liked to call Him.

We had a brief conversation about who and what was really responsible for him contracting lung cancer. He was tired and wanted to rest so I asked him if we could talk more about it later. He said yes, but we never did that day.

Soon after that brief conversation, my parents were on the plane back to New Jersey.

In January of 1995, my dad had taken a severe turn for the worse. My mom was convinced that he had “a matter of days” to live. I boarded a plane and flew out to see my dad and talk with him about the Lord. On the plane, I had little booklets called, “Our Daily Bread” that contained excerpts of Bible verses and brief commentary about them. I started to highlight the portions of Scripture that I would share with him.

I have to be honest and state that I felt completely inadequate to witness to my own dad!  However, I realized while studying Scripture on the plane that I was focusing on my felt needs rather than focusing my attention and energy towards the leading of the Holy Spirit Who would ultimately help me in my inadequacy!

I can’t say that I was “scared” to share the gospel with my dad; it was more of a worry that I wouldn’t “do it right” and end up pushing him further away from the Lord.  [Been there, done that?]  He never spoke to me about spiritual things while I was growing up so I just assumed that he was agnostic.

When I arrived at the house in N.J., I was so saddened to see my dad in such bad condition. He was bedridden, couldn’t move, drowsy from medication, and incontinent. My dad had always been a big, tall, and very strong man. To see him at half his normal weight and weak like that was very difficult. I waited until I was in my former bedroom upstairs in the house and cried my eyes out.

I helped my mom tend to him physically over the next few days, but I also asked him if we could continue our discussion from the summer about “God punishing him.”

During our discussion, I discovered something about my dad that I never knew before. When my family and I were attending the Catholic church during the days of my youth,  my dad typically stayed home.  He would usually watch sports on TV. What I didn’t know is that he would often flip through the channels during the commercials and watched Charles Stanley’s (Christian preacher) broadcast! I was certainly thrilled to hear that! It gave me an “in” to share the Bible with him.

I referred to the Scriptures I had highlighted in the booklets and shared the verses that would (hopefully) lead into sharing the gospel with my dad. Sometimes he would tire easily and ask me to stop. This went on for about 3 days.

On that third day, I presented the gospel message to him and asked if he would like to repent of his sins (as I had done, and we all need to do!)  and ask Jesus into his heart for the salvation of his soul.


My mom (she is now 90 years young!!) was nearby sitting on a chair and we all prayed together! I was so thrilled that my dad, in what was close to the 11th hour of his life, made the eternal decision for Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior! Praise God!!!

We continued with our Bible studies until the day came when it was time for me to fly back home to my family in California.

Before that day arrived, an unusual but exciting thing happened on one glorious afternoon!   I  hesitated to share this incident with others at first because I thought that people might not react well to it.  Or, I thought that they might simply  claim that my dad must have been “doped up” and didn’t know what he was saying.


This is what happened.


We had just finished our Bible study and my mom was in the kitchen getting lunch ready.

While sitting near my dad’s bed, I heard him say, “Alright Joe.”

I said, “What dad?”

My dad said, “I was talking to my buddy Joe.” [Note:  My dad often referred to his friends as “buddies” – especially in the military.]

I said, “Joe? Who and where is Joe?”

My dad said, “He’s right over there,” as he pointed to the empty chair where my mom usually sits.

I looked at the empty chair, then I looked at my dad. He seemed to be listening intently as he stared at the chair. There was a moment of silence and then my dad said, “Oh.”

I said, “What dad?”

He said, “He says you can’t see him.”

I was flabbergasted! Something like this had never happened to me before!  I was so shocked that I forgot to ask more questions!

My mom entered the room and we had lunch. Later, I asked my mom if dad knows a man named “Joe.” She told me that he was best buddies with a guy he knew while serving in WWII and he was named “Joe.” Joe died while in the service.

I have often wondered if my dad had been visited by an angel who appeared before him looking like his friend Joe. I know I can’t prove anything and I’m not trying to convince anyone here, but this incident has stuck in my mind and will never leave.

When I was flying back home, I realized that I probably would never see my dad alive again. The sorrow of that fact led to tears which were replaced by joy when my thoughts came to the great realization that I would one day see my dad again in eternity!  Why?  Because he had made the decision to accept Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior!

A wonderful thing happened soon after my visit. My dad improved a lot and was able to get out of bed and into a wheelchair. He had two last wishes. He wanted to take a ride in  his antique convertible car and sit in his favorite chair to watch TV in the living room. He did both and much more in the month of March!


Photo:  Dad with his antique car ( in the 1970’s – I think).

photo dad with antique car

I saw this as a reprieve, sent by God!

If you had seen how bad my dad looked when I visited him in January, you would never have believed that he would have lived another 4 1/2 months!

My dad died on May 30, 1995 at around 9 a.m. in the morning.

My entire family went back for the funeral. I was asked to speak at the podium during the funeral.  I was sobbing so bad on the day before as I wrote down some notes to share, so I was led to pray to God for strength to get through my comments at the funeral without crying.  My notes included celebrating his life, sharing funny anecdotes, praising him for his stance as a member of the WWII Greatest Generation in the military, his devotion and love for our family, his great work ethic, his self-taught talent in art, his love for singing and performing in plays when he was young, his love for antique cars,  and his willingness and enthusiasm to attend the sports events of all three kids over the years.  I ended my comments by sharing his decision about Christ.   About that  prayer  that I could get through speaking without crying?  God came through for me and granted my request!

As the years passed by, I would come back and visit my Mom in N.J. at least once a year, sometimes with kids in tow.  In later years, I would come back alone.

I still had the question of who “Joe” was.  My Mom gave me dozens of photo albums, some of which included military photos of my Dad and his buddies.  They were meticulously placed in the old fashioned type of photo albums that had slots for the four edges of each photo.  The names of all of the people in the pictures were neatly written below each photo.  However, in these particular albums, not one of the photos had “Joe” written in them.

Well, during a subsequent visit to the house in late 2011, I found an album that I had not seen before.  I opened it up, and lo and behold, there were several yellowed photos from my dad’s military service days and the name of “Joe” was written beneath them!  I was astonished and grateful at the same time!  Finally, I found confirmation about the “Joe” that I think my Dad may have seen and spoke to on that afternoon back in January, 1995!  I got out my iPhone and took pictures of the photos.


Photo:  Military buddies.  Joe is on the far left.  My dad is on the far right (with cigarette in mouth).


photo dad's war buddies



Photo:  Joe

photo Joe - Dad's war buddy


All of these special and unique incidences, including when the Holy Spirit of God guided me to witness for Jesus Christ with my Dad when he was so ill, and the surprising time I witnessed my Dad talking with “Joe” (while I couldn’t see Joe) in the family room of my childhood home; as well as when the Holy Spirit guided me through the funeral service speech without crying are three times in my life where my faith became steadfast and solidified. I know that the Lord Jesus Christ is real, is exactly who He says He is, and that as a confessed, forgiven, and  redeemed believer of Him,  I  KNOW that He is with me through it all…no matter WHAT happens in life.

I truly believe that experiences such as these are gifts from God designed to increase our faith. It was in the midst of my father’s impending death that I was given these gifts. At the same time, my father was given the gift of  salvation, as well as a gift of reprieve to do the two things that he really wanted to do on this earth before he went to be with the Lord.   Despite his bed-ridden condition, God answered his call for a reprieve so he could enjoy those two earthy gifts.

Praise God for these gifts because they are even more evidence of His glory!

When my time comes, there will be a joyful reunion with my dad in heaven!

Once I started sharing these facts with other Christian believers, they often would reveal to me that they also had similar experiences about their loved ones who had passed on!   I say similar, because each and every one is completely unique. These experiences speak to the heart, mind, soul and spirit of the individual(s) that it was meant for!

Our God is a God of individual salvation, as well. No two conversion testimonies are ever alike, either! That is why each and every one of us must come to the cross of Christ individually, and answer Jesus’ question, “Who do you say that I am?”


Jhn 3:16

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

The “world” in Greek means:


κόσμος kosmos

The “cosmos” includes everything that is to be redeemed…including every single human being that ever lived on this earth! The forgiveness given through repentance of sin via Christ’s sacrifice on the cross and subsequent resurrection from the dead is big enough to cover all!

I pray, dear reader, that you will consider God’s provision for YOUR salvation!

God bless,

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Faith in Jesus Christ is our response to God's elective purpose in our life. These two truths--God's initiative and man's response--co-exist throughout the Bible. The gospel is "the message of truth" because truth is its predominant characteristic. Salvation was conceived by the God of truth (Ps. 31:5); purchased by the Son, who is the truth (John 14:6); and is applied by the Spirit of truth (John 16:13). To know it is to know the truth that sets men free (John 8:32). Believers are people of the truth (John 18:37), who worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:24), and who obey the Word of truth (John 17:17). People have rejected, neglected, redefined, and opposed God’s truth for centuries. Some cynically deny that truth even exists or that it can be known by men (John 18:38). Others foolishly think that denying truth will somehow make it go away. Truth determines the validity of one's belief. Believing a lie doesn't make it true. 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There is no other way to God. False religious leaders and teachers talk much about God’s love, but not His wrath and holiness; much about how deprived of good things people are, but not about their depravity; much about God’s universal fatherhood toward everyone, but not much about his unique fatherhood toward all who believe in His Son; much about what God wants to give to us, but nothing about the necessity of obedience to Him; much about health and happiness, but nothing about holiness and sacrifice. Their message is full of gaps, the greatest of which leaves out a biblical worldview of the saving gospel and replaces it with the worldview of postmodernism with its dominant ethical system of relativism. The Bible describes mankind in the end times: “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim. 3:7). Spiritual answers cannot be deduced by human reason alone (1 Cor. 2:14). It’s not that spiritual truth is irrational or illogical, but that human wisdom is defective, because it’s tainted by man’s sinfulness, and unable to perceive the things of God. That is why the Bible is so important. It gives us the answers we can’t find on our own. It is God’s Word to mankind. Scripture is divinely revealed truth that fills the vacuum of spiritual ignorance in all of us. Post-truth is the word of the year for 2016 and also the philosophy of the day, According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. In a “post-truth” world, people make choices based on emotion and experience rather than objective fact. So in a post-truth world, truth is irrelevant. What exactly is a post-truth culture? 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