The Warrior Name

Warriors seem to like nicknames. There’s something epic about an ordinary guy becoming extraordinary with a nickname for the ages. Tony Stark became Ironman. Ben Solo became Kylo Ren. Randy Poffo became “Macho Man” Randy Savage. Fighters and warriors with extreme names, because Terry Bollea doesn’t quite have the same ring as Hulk Hogan.


A warrior name gives a warrior his identity. It allows us to connect to the legend, the power, the show of it all. And while most fighters need an alter-ego to connect to their inner warrior, there’s one who is simply a warrior. No new name needed. His name is the Lord.

Exodus 15:3 The Lord is a warrior; the Lord is his name. 

How anti-climactic. The Lord is a warrior. Yes he is! He’s all-powerful, all-knowing, all-present. He is the ultimate champion; no one can defeat him. “And now introducing the reigning champion! All the way from heaven. His name is the Lord, but his warrior name is…  wait for it…. The Lord.”

That’s it? No warrior name? Just, “The Lord?”

Yep. He doesn’t need a warrior name. The Lord is simply the Lord. He is a gentle father at the same time as he is a mighty warrior. It’s just who he is. If you need comfort, he is the Lord. If you need peace, he is the Lord. If you need him to climb into the ring with you and completely destroy the enemy with his power, he is the Lord.  We don’t serve a one dimensional or two dimensional God.  His ways are infinite. His power is limitless. His warrior capabilities are endless.

The Lord is a warrior. And I’m thankful that when I face things that I can’t begin to handle, he’s MY warrior.

The Sea Within

It’s an epic scene in history: the parting of the Red Sea. You may know the story… The Israelites have just been freed from slavery in Egypt, but the Pharaoh is sending his army to come after them. The circumstances look grave, but God does a miracle. They stand at the Red Sea before them and Moses touches the water with this staff. At that moment, the sea forms a wall to their left and to their right and they walk through it on dry ground. Awesome! Even more awesome is that the Egyptian army pursued them. During the pursuit, God caused the water to flow again and every single one of the bad guys drowned in the sea. God=1, Egyptian Army=0.


That’s how God works! He is a God of miracles. He does great big things that shape our lives. I think about Jesus and the thousands of people he fed, healed, and set free by the miraculous power of God. Jesus is awesome! This miracle in Exodus 14 was awesome, too! I want you to notice something about this story, because there’s actually a miracle before the miracle; a parting of the sea before the parting of the sea.

Exodus 14:13-14 Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”

If you read the whole chapter, you’ll find the Israelites freaking out. They say to Moses, “What, there weren’t enough graves for us in Egypt? God obviously brought us out here to be killed!” We see the fear and doubt overtake them. It paralyzes their faith to the point where they aren’t sure God can pull this one out. Even after the 12 plagues. They freeze.

At that moment, Moses speaks a word of faith over them from the Lord. “The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still.” Stop, people. Stop freaking out. Stop doubting. Stop losing your mind to fear. The Lord is about to do a giant miracle! He is going to take this sea and form a wall of water to your left and a wall of water to your right. You will walk through it safely! It’s going to be okay!

The miracle was on it’s way for Israel. The walls of water would be in their near future. But there was another miracle that needed to take place: the miracle inside of them. You see, there was a sea of doubt and fear swirling around inside their hearts. They were in a panic, couldn’t see clearly, and had lost all perspective. But if they would just be still for a moment…

If they would just be still, God would blow into their hearts and deal with the sea within. He would push doubt into a wall to their left and push fear into a wall to their rights. And in their hearts, they would stand on solid ground knowing that a bigger miracle was coming. The miracle inside their hearts would give them the resolve to stand for the miracle outside of their control. Egypt was coming after them. But in this place of peace in their hearts, the worry ceased. And as that worry ceased, so too, did the waters of the Red Sea. They would soon see with their eyes, the walls of water to their left and right and walk safely through.

The miracle inside was just as great as the miracle outside. Both miracles saved them. One from Egypt and the other from themselves. What “inside” miracle do you need in your life? Take it to the God of miracles and watch what He will do!

Just because

As a kid, I’m sure I asked a lot of questions. I probably also argued with my parents when they told me no. What can I say? It’s what kids do, right? Now when I was asking all these questions, sometimes kids go the ultra annoying route… You know what I’m talking about – they just say “why?” after every answer you give. I probably did that, too. Finally, the parent ends the whole conversation with, “because I said so.”  Let’s be real people, that’s a weak closing argument. But whatever, you are the parent, so you win.

I’m not a huge fan of the “because I said so” argument stopper. What’s even worse, though, is the “just because.” Man, I loathe that one. I worked for a large retailer for 13 years and trained for every position in the store during my time there. Sometimes when I asked questions about why we did things a certain way, “just because” was the answer. C’mon people, we can do better than that! Quite honestly, I think what you mean is, “I don’t know – I just do it be someone told me to.”  Fine. I can respect that. But I like to know the motivation behind process. Because, like, what if there’s a smarter way to get it done?

We do the whole “just because” thing with our spiritual walk too. We do it when raising our kids in the Lord. “Why do we do that?” they ask.  Is it too hard to explain how awesome God is? Or do we tell our kids that we go to church “just because” or “because I said so?” We read our Bibles because we probably should. We do things, well, just because.

The problem is, this is no way to grow spiritually. And it is certainly no way to train a child in the ways of the Lord. In Exodus 13:8, God charged the Israelites with the following instruction. On that day tell your son, ‘I do this because of what the Lord did for me when I came out of Egypt.’


Oh my goodness… they were actually supposed to tell their children why they are following the Lord. There was an explanation to be given. Shoot, they weren’t even supposed to wait until the kids asked them why. “Just because” wouldn’t be necessary. Instead, they would be sharing with their children the reason for their worship.

If you are a Christian, then you certainly have some becauses to share. In your life, there are things that God has done that make you smile, that give you joy, that overwhelm you with thankfulness for His grace. Here’s a crazy idea: tell your kids about it. Don’t just bottle it up and wait for them to ask. Take some initiative and tell them why you worship God. Tell them why you pray. Tell them why you read your Bible. (You are doing those things, right?)

What would happen if you took the time to say “son, you know why I live for God?” Then tell him. “Daughter, let me tell you why I read my Bible.” “Kids, let me tell you a story of what God did in my life.”  These are things to be shared. And specifically shared with your children. So get to sharing. “Just because” isn’t enough!

*Side note: if you don’t have any children, then I’d encourage you to find some spiritual ones. What does that mean? Lead someone to Christ and then teach them the things of God. Disciple someone. Help them grow. Tell your story to those who need their faith strengthened. This is the way of the Lord. You don’t follow the Lord and go to church “just because.” There’s a reason. And you need to start talking about it.

The world’s first “fast food” experience

I’m not a huge fan of fast food. It’s not that it doesn’t taste good. It’s just that it seems unnatural to have a hot meal ready in less than two minutes. That cannot be good for me! “What would you like today sir?” Um, ya… I’ll take a 2-minute heart attack burger and a side of indigestion fries. Oh and can I get a love handles chocolate milkshake with that? “Sure thing, sir. Would you like to supersize that?”  No thanks, I prefer to die slowly.  “No problem, is that for here or to go?”  Definitely to go. I’ll just start driving toward the hospital while I eat.

fast food combo

This is the typical fast food experience. At least that’s what goes through my head. This whole order-to-go thing seems so American. So fast paced. So rushed. But did you know that the order-to-go idea has been around for thousands of years? It’s true. You might be surprised that the whole idea was God’s. You’ll find it in Exodus 12 right before God freed His people from Egypt.

Exodus 12:11 This is how you are to eat it: with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand. Eat it in haste; it is the Lord’s Passover.

There you have it – the first ever to-go order. Fast food eaten fast. Can you just hear the announcement throughout Israel? “Alright guys, we are eating at McDonalds tonight.” I imagine what this might have looked like. The Israelites got dressed, tucked in their cloaks, put their shoes on, and had their walking sticks in their hands. That’s the equivalent of eating your nuked burger in your car while driving with your knee. Staff in one hand, meat in the other. There’s a big difference between their fast food experience and ours, though.

We do fast food because we are in a hurry (or sometimes lazy). They did fast food because they were prepared and expectant. God was about to free them. At any moment, the angel of the Lord would show up and they were to be prepared when he got there. So this was not the night to get out all the fancy dishes and sit around the dinner table for hours. On this night, they would be going on a journey of freedom. The Lord was coming. So don’t get comfortable; instead get ready.

Don’t get comfortable; get ready. Just let that sink in for a moment….

Comfortable defines us, doesn’t it? But we are called as Christians to get ready. Ready for Jesus to work in our lives today. Ready to give an answer for the hope that we have. Ready for Jesus to return for His Bride, the church.  Are we living ready? Because this is the way He has called us to live. Spiritually speaking, we should have our cloaks tucked in, shoes on, walking sticks in hand, and knees on the steering wheel.

Jesus is coming for a church that is ready. So eat quickly, grab your brown bag, and prepare your heart for the journey of freedom that Jesus has for you. Expect it. Live for it. Fast food it if you have to. JUST BE READY! 


I quit. Can I have a bonus?

Imagine this: you are fed up with your job. You can’t make it another day. So you march into the CEO’s office and tell him you’ve had it up to here. He gets a piece of your mind. Word gets out pretty fast that you aren’t happy and that you aren’t taking it anymore. But then just before you quit, you go to your direct supervisor and ask her for a bonus. Now I ask you, how is that going to go for you? Do you think you’d get the bonus? Probably not.

AY9RA6 I quit!

I know that all sounds a bit far-fetched, but this is exactly what the Israelites did in Exodus 11. Recall that the Israelites were slaves in the land of Egypt. That made them pretty much the lowest class. Everyone else was in a higher position of authority. So Moses goes in and demands freedom and then God gives this audacious instruction to His people…

Exodus 11:2-3  Tell the people that men and women alike are to ask their neighbors for articles of silver and gold.”(The Lord made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people, and Moses himself was highly regarded in Egypt by Pharaoh’s officials and by the people.)

“Sure. No problem. I mean, we OWN you and all, but here’s some silver and gold. Have a nice life. I’ll just do my own hard labor. No bigsilver and gold deal. Be blessed.”

Am I the only one who thinks this is absolutely insane? I mean, who does that? Who quits their job and then asks for more paychecks? Apparently, God’s people. It’s not the “ask” though that got me. It was the response. This little passage of scripture seems to imply that their neighbors ACTUALLY gave them silver and gold.

So here’s the question… why did this work?  The answer: Favor. Faithfulness. Obedience. I think it was all three. They had favor that stemmed from faithfulness. They had been good slaves and had won the heart of people. So people wanted to bless them. Do we have favor? Are we faithful to those who are in authority in our lives? Because if we are faithful, favor will follow. They will want to bless us.  Let me put it this way: have you given people in your life any reason to want to bless you? The Israelites had.

And obedience. Perhaps the biggest reason this whole free silver and gold thing worked out was due to obedience. God’s people were obedient to Him. Obedient to His instructions to follow Him, obedient to prepare to leave Egypt, and obedient to ask their neighbors for some silver and gold. All they had to do was ask, because God has already prepared their hearts.  We tend not to ask because the answer might be no. But we fail to realize that the answer might also be yes. If God says to ask, then ask.

There’s so much here in these two little verses. Let’s be faithful and in turn find favor. And above all, let’s be obedient to the instructions of the Lord. After all, He has a pretty good idea as to what to do in any given situation. So trust Him and find the favor and blessing in the Lord!