“ . . . no mind has conceived what God has prepared . . . “

“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him.” 1Corinthians 2:9

We are experiencing the truth of 1Corinthians 2:9 in our lives.  Although we would not choose for Lois to have cancer, we are amazed at what God is doing – both physically and spiritually – as we walk day-by-day with Him.

Yesterday, Aug 20, Lois and I traveled to Iowa City for her Chemo treatment number four. It was just the two of us for the drive there and back and we enjoyed our time together.

The Oncologist continues to be encouraging. The blood work “numbers” look good, the liver seems to be softer, and Lois is feeling good.  Although her blood pressure was high, they were willing to concede that the stress of anticipating another reaction to Chemo might be the cause. (They did send us home with instructions to take Lois’ BP everyday at different times.)

The Chemo infusion took over four hours and Lois started to have a reaction but sensed the symptoms and we took action. First of all, she got up and moved around. Second, she took an extra four TUMS to increase calcium. Third, we prayed.  In answer to prayer, the reaction never went beyond the initial symptoms. God gets all the credit!

” . . . no mind has conceived what God has prepared . . . ”

On a more personal note: Due to the very gracious gift from a family member-by-marriage who won a contest at a Christian Radio station, we had an unforgettable 33rd Anniversary celebration! On Friday night, Aug 15, along with 15 friends and family, we were treated to a private suite at Principal Park to watch an Iowa Cubs baseball game.  Then, on Saturday, we had 20 entrance tickets to the Iowa State Fair and enjoyed a wonderful day, again, with family and friends.  We still have to schedule a day at Blank Park Zoo – twenty tickets for that were also included.

Friday, Aug 22, Lois should be “deported” from the fanny pack pump about 1 pm and she is planning to go with me to Missouri Christian Union Council.

Thanks for praying!


Trusting God requires an act of our mind as well as our will. We need to teach our minds that God is completely worthy of our trust. Here are three essential truths about God which lead us to trust Him more fully:

1 – God is completely sovereign. He rules with no one above Him. God is, was, and always will be the absolute authority. He is In control of everything without question. He is the dominate and supreme Lord and King reigning over all of history; over all time. God has no beginning and no end.

2 – God is infinite in wisdom. God knows the future. He is limitless in insight. His judgment is final, accurate, and just. Romans 11:33 “Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!”

3 – God is perfect in love. We often hear, and sometimes ask, “If God is a God of love, how can such a thing happen?” Jeremiah affirmed God’s perfect wisdom when he wrote, “Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to the children of men.” Lamentations 3:32-33

Jeremiah also offends many when in the same chapter v 37-38 he writes: “Who can speak and have it happen if the Lord has not decreed it? Is it not from the mouth of the most High that both calamities and good things come?”

We must learn to trust what we don’t understand because God is completely trustworthy.  Psalm 9 verse ten show us that, “Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.”

To know God’s name is to know Him in an intimate personal way. It is more than knowing facts about God. It is coming into a deeper personal relationship with Him as a result of seeking Him and discovering Him to be completely trustworthy.


When asked about the role mega churches play in their denominations the top answer from evangelical leaders responding to the July Evangelical Leaders Survey was “None.”  That’s because many evangelical denominations have few if any very large churches.

Todd Bassett, former National Commander of the Salvation Army in the United States was very specific: “Of our 1329 churches, very few would have a congregation that exceeds 300 to 400.”  Kerry R. Ritts, of the Primitive Methodist Church, USA, explained that “We are a small denomination with no mega churches.”

Larger denominations like the Assemblies of God have a significant number of large congregations. Acknowledging that mega churches have “a very important role,” the Assemblies of God General Superintendent George Wood said that 191 of the denomination’s largest churches have 378,450 in Sunday attendance which is 21.4 percent of the total attendance of all the denomination’s churches.  That means that 1.5 percent of the churches have more than one-fifth of all the parishioners.

There was a mixed evaluation of America’s evangelical mega churches.  Compliments focused on mega church innovation, leadership, financial support of ministries, solid evangelical theology and especially “church planting” where large churches start new churches.  Criticisms included competition with smaller churches, self-reliance and lack of cooperation with other churches.

Speaking for the Worldwide Church of God, Joseph Tkach said that mega churches play no role in his denomination.  “We view them as a modern invention that does not follow the pattern of the early church. And of course, we do not view all of the mega churches as being the same. Some are exceptionally good and some are not.”

“The numbers show that mega churches are relatively few in America.  They make up less than one percent of the total number of congregations.  However, they have a disproportionate influence and visibility.  They are the leaders to which pastors and other church leaders look for how to do church,” according to Leith Anderson, president of the National Association of Evangelicals.

Bert Waggoner of The Vineyard USA summarized this disproportionate influence: “They help resource the movement with leaders and other creative resources. They make significant financial contributions. They provide venues for our larger meetings. They lead the movement in church planting. They give visibility and recognition to the movement. The quality of leadership in the mega churches raises the leadership quality in the movement.”

The Evangelical Leaders Survey is a monthly poll of the board of directors of the National Association of Evangelicals.  They include the CEOs of 60 denominations and representatives of a broad array of evangelical organizations including missions, universities, publishers and churches.


In Psalm 90:12 Moses pleads with God: “Teach us to live well! Teach us to live wisely and well!” (The Message) That is our prayer and plea, “Lord, teach us to live!” It would be so easy to just shift into neutral and coast but that is not what we choose!

On Wednesday, July 30, Lois and I drove to Bloomington, Indiana to visit friends and the church we were part of for over ten years. Lois stayed with Tim and Kathy while I attended Indiana Christian Union Council on Friday and Saturday. It was good to worship at Evangelical Community Church again and greet so many people we rarely see. The fellowship and prayer times we shared were precious. I think that’s what Moses had in mind when he asked God for life lived “wisely and well.”

Thanks to some generous gifts Lois was able to make this trip with me and then take a flight from Indianapolis to Des Moines on Tuesday, August 5 so she could be at her third Chemo infusion on Wednesday. The flight and all the connections went well but Lois’ one piece of luggage was mauled in a conveyor belt. Although none of the contents were missing, the suitcase was destroyed. The airline did replace the suitcase!

On Wednesday, Aug 6, Joy and Tony took Lois to Iowa City where her blood work came back with the best numbers we’ve seen! That’s an answer to prayer. The Chemo infusion was proceeding normally until the Eloxatin was finished. Lois wanted to walk to the restroom and couldn’t get her legs to work. The Drs. injected a clot buster and within forty minutes everything was back to normal including her blood pressure. They kept her for an extra hour and sent her home with a stronger blood pressure medication and the now familiar “fanny pack pump.”

On Friday, August 8, a home healthcare nurse came and unhooked the pump and checked all the “vital signs” and found no problems. Once again, prayer and the nausea meds and pain pills controlled all the side effects. Lois is tired when all this is going on and for a couple of the following days but is really doing well.

After putting Lois on the plane in Indianapolis, I went onto the Ohio Christian Union Council and arrived home August 11 late in the evening. This is a very busy “season” for Christian Union and not being with Lois for her third Chemo was hard but obviously part of choosing to “live wisely and well.”