It was a terribly hectic day at the doctor’s office. And it was made worse by the new receptionist who was trying very hard to cope with the chaos, but just could not get it all together. Answering the phone, checking in new patients, and doing so many new things was just more than the new receptionist could handle. The psychiatrist had taken all he could, but finally had to correct her phone answering technique. “When you answer the phone,” he said, “just say we’re terribly busy today.  Please don’t say it’s a madhouse around here.”

What is it like in your life? Are you so busy some of these days that you don’t know what to do next? If you are retired, do you sometimes wonder how you had time to go to work? It’s sometimes hard to tell the difference between just being very busy and living in a madhouse, isn’t it?

Jesus was also extremely busy, but He still had time to “get away from it all” to spend time communing with His Heavenly Father. “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed. And Simon and they that were with him followed after him. And when they had found him, they said unto him, All men seek for thee. And he said unto them, Let us go into the next towns, that I may preach there also: for therefore came I forth” (Mark 1:35-38). Simon’s comment, “All men seek for thee,” demonstrates how busy He was, and how many claims were made on His time and energy. But there was still time for prayer, for time with friends like Mary, and Martha, and Lazarus, and to bless children.

Even in the midst of the busy pace of life, however, Jesus offers us peace. He said, “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). 

There is tribulation in the world, but He offers peace.

He says, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). Maybe it is time to give some of your burdens to Him, and take up His yoke.


Lost finally solved its problem.  No more stolen signs. No more lost deliveries. No more confusion. Or at least we would hope so.

On average, Lost lost a road sign every year, and it had a perennial problem of lost deliveries. People loved to come to Lost to have their pictures taken, standing there with a bewildered expression, with a Lost  road sign in the background.

The problem is solved, though, because the small Scottish village of Lost changed  its name to “Lost Farm.” Local official Bruce Luffman told Reuters News Service that in addition to the lost road signs, “Deliveries get lost because they’ve got no idea where ‘Lost’ is, and it’s very confusing” (World, March 13, 2004).

The dictionary defines “lost” as “not made use of, won, or claimed; unable to find the way; no longer visible; lacking assurance or self-confidence: helpless; ruined or destroyed physically or morally: desperate; no longer possessed, no longer known; taken away or beyond reach or attainment: denied; hardened, insensible; absorbed, rapt (as in reverie).” As I read that lengthy definition, I noticed that there is not even one sense in which lost is a good thing, with the exception of the very last one, of being “lost in reverie.”

How bad is it to be lost? Have you ever been so lost that you just had no idea whatsoever where you were? Have you been so lost that you never could have found your way back without the help of someone else?

Much of the time when we are lost, we are not really lost. We may be a bit confused, but we know if we will just backtrack a little bit, or even stoop to breaking the secret men’s code [You can’t admit you are lost], and actually ask for directions, we can find our way. But when we think of being lost spiritually, we realize that the one who is lost is not just lost but dead. When the prodigal returned, the loving father said, “For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found” (Luke 15:24).

Since being lost is so serious, it is imperative to do all we can to reach others. In 2 Corinthians 4, Paul talks about the treasure of the gospel, a treasure that must be shared with others. “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (3-4). Paul says that we don’t preach ourselves, but the wonderful message of Christ, “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us” (7). There is power in the gospel! The lost are counting on us to share the good news with them. Do it today!


A farmer came and asked his neighbor if he could borrow his rope. The neighbor said, “No, I can’t let you borrow it.” 

“Why not,” he replied. 

“Because I’m using it to tie up my milk.”

“But you can’t tie up milk with a rope.”

“I know, but when you don’t want to do something, one excuse is as good as another.”

As a preacher, I often hear excuses from people for why they don’t want to do something, and very often they fall in the category of “tying up milk.” I had a teacher in high school who really stressed to us that there is a big difference between an excuse and a reason. If you came into his class and said, “My excuse for being late is … ,” or “My excuse for not having my homework done is … ,” he would say, “I don’t want an excuse, I want a reason!”

Have you been planning to get back in church, read your Bible more, or be baptized? Have you been planning to start coming on Sunday nights or Wednesday nights? Have you been planning to volunteer to teach a class, work with VBS or Lads to Leaders, or do something else you should do? Do you have a reason? Or is it an excuse for not doing what you should do? 

Jesus said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). He puts it pretty plainly doesn’t He? There it is in black and white. You may make all the excuses you want to, but if you are not obeying the Lord, you don’t love Him. Is it time to take some action? 

“And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say? Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will show you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great” (Luke 6:46-49).


Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you ran the world? You could probably think of many changes you would make. The world would no doubt be a better place if you were running the world.

Walter Waldheim comments: “If children were allowed to run the country, we’d have soda flowing out of the drinking fountains, bridges built with Tinkertoys, styrofoam airliners, and bad countries would have to play by themselves.”

In many ways, our generation has failed the world. We have allowed our world to be a place filled with violence and ugliness. My prayer is that the next generation will do better than we have.

Perhaps this is why Jesus was known as One Who welcomed the children. The disciples just knew that He was too busy to be bothered by the children. “And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them” (Mark 10:14-16).

What does it mean to be a child in the kingdom of God? Children often have beautiful characteristics such as optimism and trust. They just know that Daddy can fix anything, and that Mother’s kiss can cure any injury. They can see the wonder in the commonplace things of the world, and time provides the opportunity to learn and grow. And of course, one of the most enduring characteristics of children is that they forgive so easily. Rather than harboring grudges and ill feelings, they quickly make up. Life is too short for fussing and feuding. And if someone won’t play right, they just may have to play by themselves.

Have you received the kingdom of God as a little child? When the people of Samaria “believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women” (Acts 8:12).