Archive for June, 2016



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

A father took his young son to the barber shop for a haircut. The room was filled with cigar smoke. The lad pinched his nose and exclaimed, “Who’s been smoking in here? It stinks.” The barber confessed, “I have.” The boy responded, “Don’t you know it’s not good for you?” “I know,” the barber replied. “I’ve tried to quit a thousand times but I just can’t.” The boy responded, “I understand. I’ve tried to stop sucking my thumb, but I can’t quit either!”

No matter what your age, we all struggle with sins of the flesh. The battle is in our minds, and our minds will naturally give way to the desires of the flesh. We need a supernatural edge to help us stay focused on the Spirit in our battle with the flesh.

Are you struggling to break some stubborn habit? Say with the Apostle Paul, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). Think less of the power of things over you and more of the power of Christ in you.



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

The story goes that there was once a monk who had a short temper and was known to always “pass the buck” by blaming other monastery residents for his anger. So, he decided to move to a place of absolute solitude in a desert, thinking that if he got away from the others he could be victorious.

One morning he accidentally knocked over a pitcher of water. A few minutes later he bumped it again, and once more it fell on its side and spilled its contents. Losing his temper, the monk picked up the pitcher and hurled it to the ground. As it broke into dozens of pieces, the truth hit him: he couldn’t blame others for his flareups. The real trouble was within him.

We are all responsible for our emotions. You might smack me, but you can’t make me angry. That is my choice. That’s why Jesus could look down from the cross at His attackers and say, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do”.

Anger is rage at not being in control. And none of us are really in control of our lives. That’s God’s job. The heart of the problem is the problem of the heart.



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

The year was 1972. Anita and I were attending a Christian concert held at the National Guard Armory in Angola. Terrible acoustics! But we wanted to support Nancy Honeytree, Petra and several other groups as they performed. Nancy went first and did a great job with her Christian folk style. Everybody loved her easy way of loving Jesus.

Next came Petra with their Christian rock style. Sounds bounced all over in that armory building. Behind me I heard a banging sound that wasn’t in rhythm with Petra’s drummer. We turned around to see this old gentleman banging a metal folding chair up and down on the concrete floor. He was angry and demonstrating his disgust. People were stunned. He finally stopped and stomped out of there in a huff.

We watched as Honeytree followed him out the door. About ten minutes later they walked back in. He quietly sat in his folding chair the rest of the concert. I don’t know what Nancy told him, but it calmed him down. I will never mention the man’s name, because he was a committed Christian and is today with Jesus. But I will forever remember that Nancy went out of her way to build a bridge with that older man to connect him with the music of a younger generation. That is true Christianity.



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

Wish you could’ve been there to see Goliath hit by that rock? The Philistines were bold and outrageous. The Israelites were fearful and apprehensive. King Saul was willing to try anything. And Goliath was as vocal as Mohammed Ali. David was defensive of the honor of His God. He let the rock fly and God guided it to its mark…Goliath’s forehead.

The prophet Isaiah wrote of judgment: It “reels to and fro like a drunkard and it totters like a shack, for its transgression is heavy upon it, and it will fall, never to rise again” (Isaiah 24:20). But Isaiah was not writing about Goliath’s demise, he was writing about the Great Tribulation upon the earth in the last days. In the last Days there will be such immorality and resistance to God that all sense of civility collapses. Are we there yet?

Its time for a believing church to arise to the occasion and speak to what remains.



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

Anita watches our two grandsons (14 months) on Mondays and Wednesdays. One thing I’ve learned by watching them is that they both have a common world view. Elisa Morgan, president of MOPS International (Mothers of Pre-Schoolers), recorded it like this:

If I want it, it’s mine.
If I give it to you and change my mind later, it’s mine.
If I can take it away from you, it’s mine.
If I had it a little while ago, it’s mine.
If it’s mine, it will never belong to anyone else, no matter what.
If we are building something together, all the pieces are mine.
If it looks just like mine, it is mine.

We chuckle at this from a toddler’s egotistical perspective, but when a full grown person keeps carrying that same selfish attitude, we know trouble is on the horizon. Its time to grow up and take responsibility for some of the selfish things going on in our lives. Its what we give away that we get to keep for eternity.



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

St. Augustine was one of the founding fathers of the church who lived from 354-430 AD. In his autobiography entitled Confessions, he wrote:

“There was a pear tree near our vineyard, laden with fruit. One stormy night we rascally youths set out to rob it…We took off a huge load of pears – not to feast upon ourselves, but to throw them to the pigs, though we ate just enough to have the pleasure of the forbidden fruit. They were nice pears, but it was not the pears that my wretched soul coveted, for I had plenty better at home. I picked them simply to become a thief…The desire to steal was awakened simply by the prohibition of stealing.”

Romans 7:7-13 explains Augustine’s experience by saying that human nature is inherently rebellious. Give us a law and we will see it as a challenge to break it. Tell a child, “Don’t touch that”, and we know what they’ll do. When God places His Spirit inside of a believer, He imparts a new desire and ability so that our greatest pleasure becomes bringing pleasure to God.

You will be tempted to cheat today. What does God’s Spirit say?



   Posted by: pastordiehl    in Uncategorized

I have a lawn care company professionally spray my grass for weeds each spring. This year they sprayed one of my 2-year old oak tree transplants. The tree is tough but not that tough. The leaves are curling and stunted in growth. It is slowly dying because it got spray on the leaves.

A couple of years ago we owned a dog that got sprayed by a skunk. The dog was healthy but she knew she was rejected by us. Tomato juice helps, but that dog wasn’t allowed near anybody for awhile. She had been sprayed. All her relationships changed.

Our team that just arrived back from the Dominican Republic also got sprayed by the Holy Spirit while they were down there. When you get sprayed, nothing remains the same. Everything changes. The Spirit’s spray soaks in and has a continual affect on one’s life. They’ll be sharing the report of their amazing trip to touch the lives of Dominican nationals tonight at 7PM at the church. I don’t want to miss this.