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“The opposite of faith is not doubt, but certainty” – Anne Lamott

We need to stop treating doubt  like it is the enemy of faith. Questions need to be asked by us to make faith our own. Doubt is not deadly to faith, but silence is.

Pretending that we have to be certain about everything prevents us from asking those tough questions. But it is those tough questions that get answered that eventually turns those doubts into the strongest anchors to our faith.

Instead of pretending to be certain about everything, let us encourage questions. And when you don’t know the answer, one of the best responses you can give is “I don’t know, but lets find out together”.

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Fear, pain, loss, and the unknown can be overwhelming. There are times I feel like the world is crashing in on all sides; like there is no route of escape. Our natural response in those circumstances is to shut down, to close ourselves off. In these moments, these pivotal circumstances, we tend to do one of two things: draw closer to God, or pull away from Him. While I’m in the midst of this emotional storm, I’m reminded of David. When he was literally being hunted down by king Saul, he leveraged his emotions to draw near to God.

Whatever your trail, whatever your circumstances, leverage them to draw you closer to God, because He cares for you.

May you be encouraged by the prayer and cry of David:

“Hear my cry, O God;
Attend to my prayer.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You,
When my heart is overwhelmed;
Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
For You have been a shelter for me,
A strong tower from the enemy.
I will abide in Your tabernacle forever;
I will trust in the shelter of Your wings.”
-Psalm 61:1-4

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Good Good Father is a powerful worship song by Chris Tomlin that is blessing the hearts of people everywhere. It was originally written by Anthony Brown and Pat Barrett of the worship band Housefires, but since Chris Tomlin has released a single of the song, Good Good Father has swept through the nation quickly.

Lyrics and Chords to Good Good Father Live by Chris Tomlin and Housefires

Artist: Chris Tomlin | Housefires
Song: Good Good Father
Key: A (Capo 2)

Intro:  G / Gsus / G / Gsus

Verse 1:
    G             Gsus               G        Gsus
Oh I've heard a thousand stories of what they think You’re like
     G              Gsus              G          Gsus
But I've heard the tender whisper of love in the dead of night
    Cadd9    G/B                       Am7         D    (Hold D)
You tell me that Your pleased and that I'm never alone

You're a good, good father
                 G                  Am7                 D
It's who You are,  it's who You are,   it's who You are
And I'm loved by you
               G               Am7              D (Hold D)
It's who I am,   it's who I am,   it's who I am

Verse 2:
        G        Gsus                G      Gsus
Oh and I've seen many searching for answers far and wide
    G      Gsus                     G           Gsus
But I know we're all searching for answers only you provide
            Cadd9             G/B         Am7       D
Because You know just what we need before we say a word

[Chorus x2]
                 Cadd9                  Em7
Because you are perfect in all of your ways
          Am7                   G
You are perfect in all of your ways
         Cadd9                 Em7     D
You are perfect in all of your ways to us
            Cadd9                  Em7
Oh you are perfect in all of your ways
          Am7                   G
You are perfect in all of your ways
         Cadd9                 Em7     D
You are perfect in all of your ways to us

G / Gsus / G / Gsus

Verse 3:
         G        Gsus     G        Gsus
Oh it’s love so undeniable I, I can hardly speak
  G       Gsus         G         Gsus
Peace so unexplainable I, I can hardly think
       Cadd9    G/B
As You call me deeper still
        Am7     G/B
As You call me deeper still
       Cadd9    G/B
As You call me deeper still
      Am7       D
Into love love love

[Chorus x2]

[Bridge x2+]

I hope Good Good Father blesses you like it has blessed me. Matthew 7:7-11 says:

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?  Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?  If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

Share your thoughts on the song below in the comments sections below.



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There are many tools that can help us in our journey of growth as a Christian. Daily devotionals are one of those tools.

Devotionals have a great way of helping us bridge our culture to the culture we see in the Bible. Reading the Bible without commentary can cause us to scratch our heads sometimes, especially if we don’t know anything about a culture that is not only on a different continent (for most of us), but also over 2,000 years removed….and that’s just the New Testament. I have trouble enough relating to my Grandparents culture that is 60 years before my time. Certain translations of the Bible help with this, but most devotionals are written directly to our culture and can really put the Bible into context. I recommend devotionals to all Christians, but also don’t mistake my recommendation for suggesting that they replace your Bible. They should be used as a tool to help us better understand the Bible, but as for reading directly from the Bible, there is no substitute.

How do you choose a daily devotional?

There are countless devotionals out there, and choosing one can be overwhelming. My goal is to help you look for a few things as a criteria to help you in your search.

When choosing any daily devotional, I always recommend 2 things as a criteria; That the devotional be Bible based, and that the devotional is relevant to you.

Is the Devotional Bible Based?

This is of a major importance for me. Devotionals full of advice, opinions and stories fall in the self-help category if they are not referencing and using scripture constantly. I recommend devotionals that use a scripture or passage of scripture as an anchor in each and every one of their posts. This keeps the Bible as the central theme and really just helps put it into context for our lives.This also means that the beliefs expressed in the devotional should line up with the Bible.

Mobile Apps are able to take being Bible based to a whole different level since there are no print costs. A lot of apps out there have devotionals that have you reading a good amount of scripture right from the app, and then pull in the devotional commentary. The YouVersion Bible app is a must for anyone with a smartphone. It is absolutely free, contains the complete Bible in it, with over 1,000 translations available, and has a section where you can choose from countless devotionals that bring you into the Bible and commentary fluidly.

Is the Devotional Relevant to You?

Relevancy is extremely important in choosing a daily devotional. If you are a new Christian, a devotional covering deep theological issues may not be for you. If you are a man, a devotional for women isn’t really relevant to you. Look for devotionals that actually interest and appeal to you because who you are now, at this point in your life, is the kind of person the devotional was written for. There are lots of devotionals out there, and I’m certain there is at least one that focuses on the root of what you may be struggling with right now. There are really great ones out there for women, men, youth, married couples, singles…you name it. See my other post on 3 Daily Devotionals For Women. Look for a daily devotional that really speaks to your heart and life.

I hope this short on how to choose a devotional is helpful in your search. Whatever devotional you are considering, be sure to check to see if it is Bible Based, with at least scripture as an anchor to every devotion, and make sure it meets you where you are at. Don’t forget to ask your pastor or a Christian mentor in your life for recommendations, and use the stated criteria as a quick checklist.

Are there any other criteria you use when looking for a devotional? Share your thoughts with us using the comments section below.



One of most the important tools for women (and any Christian) to assist them in their walk with Jesus are daily devotionals. There are so many options out there that it can be quite overwhelming to choose one. With this post I will provide women with 3 great options for daily devotionals.

What I love about daily devotionals is that they can help bridge the gap between our culture and the culture of the time the Bible was written. Daily devotionals should help us relate topics, stories and people in the Bible to real situations we face in our culture today. All this being said, I strongly recommend devotionals don’t replace your Bible, but be used as a tool to help you better use your Bible.

When choosing any daily devotional, I always recommend 2 things as a criteria; That it be Bible based, and that it meets you where you’re at now. Read my post How to Choose a Daily Devotional for more detailed tips on the topic.

3 Great Daily Devotionals For Women

There are numerous daily devotionals out there for women, but the following 3 are ones I have no problem recommending to any woman to consider.

1. The Confident Woman Devotional: 365 Daily Inspirations

The Confident Women Devotional , by Joyce Myer, is based on her #1 New York Times bestseller, The Confident Woman.

In this daily devotional, Joyce Meyer does a great job tapping into the concerns and issues that concern women most. Every daily reading is no longer than one page and begins with a verse or passage of scripture. Every reading coincides with a day of the month, so you can begin any time, and if you miss a day, or even a week, you can just jump right back into it. Meyer provides great insight and encouragement to help women tackle problems in the areas of life they struggle with most–including confidence, self image, and relationships. This powerful daily devotional will help women on their journey towards a confident life filled with love, laughter, and God’s acceptance, one day at time. With over 350 customer reviews on amazon, it maintains an outstanding 4.7 out of 5 star rating. Check out the devotional here: The Confident Woman Devotional: 365 Daily Inspirations

2. Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence

Jesus Calling, by Sarah Young, is the #1 best selling devotional, written uniquely as if Jesus were speaking directly to you, the reader.

Although this daily devotional is not exclusively for women, I can’t help but put Jesus Calling on the list. Maintaining a 4.9 out of 5 star rating on Amazon after 10,000+ customer reviews is no small feat. Jesus Calling is a devotional filled with uniquely inspired treasures from heaven for every day of the year by missionary Sarah Young. Every devotion is no more than a page in length and starts as if Jesus were speaking directly to you and ends with scripture(s) related to the reading. What I love about this approach is it can really help you break through the barrier of religion and experience Jesus in a personal and relational way. Check out the devotional here: Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence

3. She Reads Truth – App

She Reads Truth - Daily Devotional for WomenShe Reads Truth is one of my wife’s personal favorite devotionals. This is a great option for all you tech savvy women out there that prefer the convenience of having a great daily devotional app right on your mobile device. Straight from my wife’s mouth, the reason she uses She Reads Truth is because “it makes daily devotionals easy”. It is rare that her phone isn’t with her, so having the app on her phone is a huge plus. It has a modern feel to it, complete with a full bible, a “One Year Bible” reading plan, and numerous quality daily devotional’s that range from free to a small charge. Most of the devotionals start with an ample amount of scripture as if you were reading straight from the Bible, then it is followed up with a practical commentary for women. Another highlight is the community involvement they have incorporated by allowing comments to be made on each of the devotionals so you (the reader) can engage with other women and support and encouragement each other. Check out the app here: iOS She Reads TruthAndroid She Reads Truth

Find a Daily Devotional that Works for You

I hope you found this short list helpful in your search for a daily devotional for women. This is definitely not an exhaustive list, and the most important thing is that you find a daily devotional you will use; it does you no good if it just sits on your shelf or device unused.

What are your favorites? Recommend a daily devotional in the comments below.



The Son of Man came to Seek and to Save the Lost - Luke 19:10

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” – Luke 19:10


Each of us have our own struggles and ways we stumble most often, but is it true that temptation is a sin?

This question came up in my Life Group the other week and it is a very important topic to discuss. Does sin start the moment we are tempted?

The profound biblical answer is temptation is not a sin.

Scripture is quite clear that none of us are perfect (See Romans 3:10 & Romans 3:23). But if someone was perfect, would they ever be faced with temptation? Fortunately we don’t have to guess; we have our answer in Jesus Christ.

Check out the following account found in Matthew

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.

– Matthew 4:1

Let’s look at this verse. Not only was Jesus tempted, but he was led by the Spirit to place He would be tempted. If temptation was a sin, not only would Jesus have been guilty of sin, but so would the Holy Spirit for leading Jesus to a place where temptation would happen.

Now let’s be sure to not confuse this; the Holy Spirit did not tempt Jesus to sin (See James 1:13), rather the Holy Spirit allowed Jesus to be tempted. This difference, no matter how subtle it can seem to us, matters.

Why did God want Jesus to be tempted in the first place?

The best answer comes from the scriptures itself:

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything….Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” – James 1:2-4 & 12 

Trials and temptations test our faith, which produces perseverance, which leads to maturity and fruitfulness.

Temptation will never cease for any living person; no matter how many minutes you spend reading the Bible, scriptures you memorize, or situations you avoid. Jesus being tempted was part of proving His humanity. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin (Hebrews 4:15).

Jesus overcame temptation to show us He understands our struggles and can help us through them. Not just as the big man upstairs, but as someone who has been down in the trenches just like us.

You are not alone in temptation

So is temptation a sin? No. Jesus’ example shows that they are part of the human condition, and can be overcome. God purposes trials and temptations to perfect our faith and bring us to maturity. We are told to flee from temptation not because it is a sin in itself, or have already sinned, but because while being tempted we are in a place where we want to sin. If temptation was itself a sinful mark, we would not have a sinless savior, one who was “tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin (Hebrews 4:15).

One last bit of encouragement for us all:

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it (1 Corinthians 10:13).

Whenever you face temptations, know that you are not alone. Your temptation is not only common to man, but Jesus overcame the same temptations and provides the way out; so look for it.

-Colton Jansen

(If you found this article helpful, be certain to share it below)


Do you happen to be a chronic excuse maker? Maybe this video will inspire you to change…

Question: What are some of your big buts?


How many of you know someone who is so outspoken that they declare their opinion before their brain understands what’s going on? I’m sure we all know at least one person…Or maybe that someone is you!? Being “outspoken” is one of the many characteristics used to describe Peter.

On the way, Jesus told them, “All of you will desert me. For the Scriptures say,

‘God will strike the Shepherd,
and the sheep will be scattered.’

…Peter said to him, “Even if everyone else deserts you, I never will.” Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, Peter—this very night, before the rooster crows twice, you will deny three times that you even know me.” “No!” Peter declared emphatically. “Even if I have to die with you, I will never deny you!”

Mark 14:27,29-31

Peter is one of my heroes. I am so grateful that God used him, his strengths, and weaknesses to be an example for us. Here in the above passage, Peter shouts out the right answer without hesitation. With his emotions running high, he basically tells Jesus “I will never desert you, no matter what the others do”. Since then, thousands of Christians have said those same words at youth retreats, revivals, worship conferences, and the like.

But we know what happens in act two don’t we. Peter does in fact deny Christ three times before the rooster crows, just as Jesus said he would (Luke 22:54-62).

Descending the Mountain Top Experience

So many of us boldly make decisions to get our act together and follow Jesus during, what I call, the Mountain Top Experience. These are times of extreme emotional highs. We stand boldly in front of others and raise our hands declaring that we will do whatever it takes to live the Christian life; to follow Christ’s example.

But somewhere along the way, life happens. We leave the mountain top and enter the valley; day to day life. The warm fuzzies fade off and it’s back to the old “Christian” routine, which translates in to little to no time for God. Does this describe you?

The silver lining on the cloud is that Peter’s story does not end in act two, with his denial of Christ, there is an act three (for all you screenplay buffs). The rest of Peter’s life is filled with faith and dedication to Christ. After Jesus’ Resurrection, Peter was the first person to preach publicly about Christ (See Acts Chapter 2). Peter was one of the boldest apostles of all, and was a key instrument in founding the church.

The mountain top experience is always followed by the valley. But how can we make the descent successfully? We don’t have to fall away from Christ. You have probably heard this more times than you can count, but Jesus came to break down the barriers of religion and blew open the doors for a relationship. Maintaining a vibrant faith takes work…and by work I mean time, time with God. Imagine being married to someone you didn’t speak to, or never spent time with? I’ll tell you right now, that marriage will dry up. The same is true with our “marriage” with God. This relationship needs time. When we leave the emotional high of the mountain top experience, we need to press in and take hold of, and spend daily time with Christ.

If you are the culprit of a dried up relationship with Christ, you still have today to make it right. I warn you, it will take resolve. Here are my three tips on how to successfully descend the mountain top experience:

1. Read the Bible Daily

I know, I know. You have heard this a thousand times. But how can we expect to be close to God if we don’t read the letters he has written us. Imagine if you couldn’t see your spouse for a significant amount of time, and the only way for your spouse to communicate with you was by writing you letters…wouldn’t you read them? I expect you would do more than just read them too. I believe you would keep them with you, and read over them continually to remind yourself of them and their love for you. The same is true with God.

So I digress, pick a time in your schedule and begin reading the bible, and stick with it! Maybe give your first 15 minutes to God. 10 minutes for reading the Bible, and 5 minutes for praying.

That leads me right into my next tip…

2. Pray Continually

This is another you may have anticipated. If the Bible is like a letter from God, prayer is a phone call. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to “pray continually”. This isn’t your stereotypical religious prayer where you get on your knees, clasp your hands together, bow your head and close your eyes (not that we shouldn’t ever do that). This is an open line of communication with God, all day. This is taking God with you wherever your day brings you.

3. Join a Church

You may be thinking, “Colton, I already go to church!”…But I’m not talking about attending church 50% of Sundays…or even 100% of Sundays, I’m talking about joining with it; a partnership. Get plugged in. Join a small group of people there where you can connect and build relationships that will help hold you accountable. Find a way to serve. Transition from a consumer to a contributor.

Let us make bold statements of faith like Peter, but when we leave the mountain top experience, let us put real time into our relationship with God, and follow through. These 3 tips are simply scratching the surface of maintaining an intimate relationship with God while descending the mountain top experience, and simply doing them to make a check on your checklist will not accomplish much. But if you do them with sincerity and commitment, I believe you will be on the right track.


Do you have any tips on how to successfully descend the mountain top? Share your highs and lows with us below.


If you live in the united states, our culture could be described in one word; “Consumerism”. You cannot drive less than 5 minutes before you get bombarded with the call to “consume“. In fact, many of us can’t leave our own home without seeing a barrage of ads telling us we need something.

Almost everything that is made to be seen or heard are filled with advertisements conveying a message of “you need this”. Pay attention the rest of your day and you will see it; the post in the mail, any magazine,almost any radio show and anything on television.

The Issue:

When we are told something over and over and over again, it begins to transform our thinking and we begin to believe it. And when we believe it, we consume. In fact, we consume so much that a second word almost always ensues; Debt.

In fact, debt has infiltrated our mindset so much that we seem to believe it’s as much of an individual reality as someone needing oxygen to breathe.

Consumerism capitalizes on the fact that we actually do need things. It is not  wrong for businesses to market themselves or their products towards us. The problem is that we can’t wait for it. We don’t save for it. Instead, we get it now. We come up with up with words like “credit” or “finance” to dull the sting of debt.

Well here are two verses for you from Proverbs 22:

Start children off on the way they should go,
    and even when they are old they will not turn from it.

The rich rule over the poor,
    and the borrower is slave to the lender.

Proverbs 22:6-7

We have been taught from a young age that debt is a way of life. We live beyond our means, then we become a slave to the lender. As Americans, we earn substantially more than most people in others countries…but we spend it all…and then some. Because of this, we live in a constant state of instability, insecurity and fear. It is no surprise then that finances happen to be one of the leading causes for divorce.

Here is another verse for you:

But godliness with contentment is great gain.

1 Timothy 6:6

Calling all Christians

If you are a Christian, I am calling you out right now. We are the salt of the earth, the light of the world, a city on a hill that cannot be hidden (see Matthew 5:13-16)…we have to be different. Every aspect of our lives need to point to Christ. How we handle our finances is no exception. We need to actually handle money the way the Bible tells us we should handle it.

Romans 12:2a says “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

We need to change our behavior. We have to renew our mind.

Maybe you have heard of Financial Peace University. It is a biblically based curriculum that teaches people how to handle money God’s ways. My wife and I have gone through FPU a twice now. It has given us a unified purpose with our finances that goes beyond consumerism. FPU has helped more than 2 million families change their lives. I strongly encourage EVERYONE (yes, even you; the person who handles money just fine.) to go through the curriculum.

Handling money God’s way doesn’t mean we keep nothing for ourselves or our family. In fact, it is quite the contrary. Proverbs 13:22a says “A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children…” and 1 Timothy 5:8 says “Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

One local hero that I really look up to here in northern California is Larry Dahl. He is the founder of the drive through oil change company “Oilstop” and the car wash division “Wash2Go“. He founded his company with a philosophy directly from scripture; “We will serve people with excellence, humbly, with a servant’s heart.”  Larry has found tremendous success handling business God’s ways.

Ultimately, we as Christians need to break out of the consumer mindset. We need turn to scripture to get instructions on all areas of our lives, including business and finances. We need to get out of debt so we no longer live in bondage, but free in order to do the work of Christ.


Colton Jansen


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