Category Archives: Uncategorized

Personal prayer for healing

Photo by Ivan Samkov on Pexels.com

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

Oh, Lord God in heaven, please see my tears and hear my cry 1. Be gracious to me, for I are weak. Heal me on the bed where I lie2.  Lord Jesus, I know divine power is in You to heal me 3. Please have compassion on me, Jesus! 4. Just say the word, Lord, and I will be healed 5.

Heal me, Lord, and I will be healed; save me, Lord, and I will be saved, for You are my praise 6.

Scriptural basis for the prayer:

  1. 2 Kings 20:5
  2. Psalm 6:2; 41:3
  3. Luke  5:17
  4. Matthew 14:14
  5. Matthew 8:8
  6. Jeremiah 17:14

A prayer for my family

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

O God, teach me to love my family as fully and faithfully as the Heavenly Father loves Christ the Son, and as the Son loves the Father. May I honor my parents (Exodus 20:12), and may I delight in my children and grandchildren (Proverbs 23:24). Heavenly Father, please build a hedge of protection around my family, and bless the work of our hands. (Job 1:10). May we be united in love, blameless in character and wise in our decisions. May we learn to depend on You in prayer, and pass on the faith of Jesus Christ to our children, generation after generation, to the glory of God.  

The parable of the bear and the rabbits

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

Once there was a colony of rabbits who lived by a forest. Although there were some dangers, such as a bear named Covey in the woods and a snake in the Vax River, most of the time they lived peaceful, happy lives. The forest was overflowing with fresh grass, weeds and wildflowers to eat.

One day, just as the herd was grazing together along the Vax River, Covey, the big bear appeared from behind the trees, snatched up some rabbits in his paw, and ate them. The terrified rabbits ran, but they were trapped by the river behind them, and a fence to the sides, made by the Man. As they darted back and forth, the bear continued to grab rabbits and eat them. One rabbit shouted, “Jump into Vax River!” Others shouted back, “We can’t! The snake may be in the river! God will rescue us!” Many jumped into the river, and swam away, but many others stayed in the nest. Soon, a large part of the colony had escaped to the other side of the river, but the bear continued to gobble up those left behind. The rabbits on the other side of the river called to the others, pleading with tears, “Please jump in the river and swim over!” But the rabbits who remained in the nest shouted back, “Don’t tell us what to do! The snake may be in the river!” The rabbits on the other side called back, “The snake didn’t bite us! We tested the river, and it’s safe!” But the rabbits in the nest said, “The Vax River hasn’t been tested long enough! Maybe you were bitten and just don’t realize it yet. The venom may yet kill you.” The rabbits on the other side said, “No, we were not bitten. We trust the river.” The rabbits in the nest said, “We trust in God. God will protect us.” The rabbits on the other side said, “God protected us when we crossed the river.” But it was no use. Despite the pleading of the rabbits on the other side of the Vax, the rabbits who remained in the nest were more afraid of the Vax than Covey.

The rabbits on the other side of the River Vax ran to another field, far, far away. The rest of the colony continued to flee Covey, and the bear grabbed them and ate them, one by one. Then Covey went off in search of other rabbits.

Eight post-pandemic uses for the face mask

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

As Americans approach “herd immunity” against COVID-19 and are rarely wearing face masks anymore, I’ve been thinking what to do with all the extra ones lying around. I came up with a few ideas:

Eye cover for sleep. When I’m sleeping late or taking an afternoon nap, I can put it over my eyes instead of over my mouth, and presto! I have a sleep mask.

Protection from the cold. This past winter, I wore my face mask while riding the bicycle on cold days, not to protect from the virus, but to protect my face from the cold. It helps!

Protection against bad breath. A good surgical mask can really block out smells, so if I’m dealing with somebody with bad breath (theirs or my own), I might still come up with an excuse to wear it.

Clipping your fingernails. Why make a mess clipping your fingernails? Set that mask in your lap, and clip them over the mask, to catch them from falling. (See below)

Mowing the grass. If I have grass allergies, I might still wear a face mask while mowing the lawn.

Clean your glasses. Need a small cloth to clean your glasses? Just grab your mask.

Blind date. If you are going on a blind date and you are unsure whether you want to cut and run early, you can wear the mask and sunglasses so they don’t recognize you.

Making a quilt. Here’s my favorite idea. Give all the leftover masks to grandma, and let her make a quilt in memory of 2020.

Have you got any ideas? I’d love to hear in the comments below.

Yes, Virginia, there are Thanksgiving songs!

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Article copyright by Bob Rogers.

The season of Christmas is so celebrated in America today, that the holiday suffocates Thanksgiving! People replace their orange pumpkins with holly of red and green, earlier and earlier in November. When I suggested to a friend he might wait until after Thanksgiving to play Christmas songs, his reply was, “There aren’t any Thanksgiving songs, so I’m playing Christmas songs!” Here’s my reply: Yes, Virginia, there ARE Thanksgiving songs! (I can’t remember his name, so I’ll call him Virginia, with apologies to the famous 1897 editorial of The (New York) Sun, “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.”) Here are some Thanksgiving songs that are so awesome, they are worth downloading on Amazon Music, Spotify, watching on YouTube, or however you do it:

  1. “Thank You” by Chris Tomlin with Thomas Rhett and Florida Georgia Line is a fast-paced country song of reasons to thank the Lord.
  2. “The Thanksgiving Song” by Ben Rector is a joyful pop song listing specific things we do on Thanksgiving. Written in 2020, the last stanza thanks God because “we made through, I do believe, the longest year in history.” The official You Tube video shows the words on the plates, boxes of food items, etc. as he sets the table.
  3. “At This Table” by Idina Menzel is an soaring, inspirational pop song that invites everybody to gather together at the same table of love.
  4. “Thankful” by Josh Groban features a rich, melodic pop tune, with inspiring lyrics calling us to look beyond ourselves and be grateful.
  5. “What I’m Thankful For” by Garth Brooks and James Taylor is a country song of gratitude for faith and family.
  6. “My Heart Is Filled With Thankfulness” by Keith & Kristyn Getty has a beautiful Irish melody, a modern hymn, set to deep Christian theology of gratitude. I encourage you to watch this one on YouTube.
  7. “Thankful” by Kelly Clarkson is a sassy-styled pop love song of gratitude.
  8. “Thank You” by Keith Urban is an emotional pop song that reflects on how his wife rescued him from despair.
  9. “I Thank You” by Sam & Dave is a classic R & B love song.
  10. “Thankful N’ Thoughtful” by Sly and the Family Stone is a soul song that will have you dancing with gratitude.

I’m not that Bob Rogers

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It’s near the end of September 2020, so I was just checking the monthly statistics on my blog, when I noticed a huge jump in the number of visitors on September 28. What’s going on? I wondered.

I noticed that most of the visitors were coming from Search Engines, so I wondered why people were searching for Bob Rogers. I knew that there is a Pentecostal preacher, Dr. Bob Rodgers, who is pastor of the 9,000-member Evangel World Prayer Center in Louisville, Kentucky. When I was a pastor in Georgia, our office sometimes got calls asking if I was he, and our secretary had to disappoint them: “He’s not that Bob Rodgers” (My family didn’t have enough money to put a “D” in Rogers.) After I learned that the Kentucky Rodgers pronounced a “curse” upon his political opponents, I was glad he spelled his name wrong, because I do believe Jesus loved His enemies and told us to “bless, not curse” (Luke 6:27-28). There is also a prominent Assembly of God pastor in Texas named Bob Rogers.

In addition to the above, according to Wikipedia:

Bob Rogers may refer to:

And of course, I’m none of those people. But the answer was in that list above.

But this time, I noticed most of the visitors to my blog were coming from Australia! With a little searching myself, I soon learned that a radio disc jockey in Sydney, Australia, named Bob Rogers, announced his retirement after 78 years on the air. I mean, this dude toured with the Beatles, and was still on the radio! But at age 93, he said, “I think it’s time we gave the young fellows a bit of a go.”

I’m not that Bob Rogers, either, but I’m glad a learned about my namesake. He’s a pretty cool guy; and he spells Rogers correctly, too.

In case you came to this blog looking for the Aussie disc jockey Bob Rogers, you can read more about him here.

Putting our troubles into perspective- my story

Photo by Simon Migaj on Pexels.com

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

Sometimes it helps to put our troubles into perspective. Let me share a memory from many years ago. As a young pastor just beginning a family, I served several churches as pastor on a small salary. My wife Mary and I had some financial struggles, but we were happy, getting by living in a mobile home nicely furnished at one church, and later a larger pastorium, although we sometimes didn’t have the money to refill the butane heater. Our first child, Melissa, was born. Money was tight, but God provided. Eventually, I decided God was calling me to return to New Orleans Baptist Seminary and work on a doctoral degree.

Those days in seminary working on my doctorate were especially difficult times financially. I gave up my church position as pastor to dedicate myself to study, and I took a job on campus working for the grounds crew three days a week, so I could be in class and study the other days. I also worked as a grader for the professor, but that paid very little. My income was even less than when I worked for a church, even with Mary working. We stretched the money every way that we could.

One December day during this time, I got a call from the church there in New Orleans where we were members. They wanted me to pick up a Christmas gift for a needy seminary student family. I was so excited, because I thought that must be for my family. I arrived at the church, and they gave me the name and address of a student family in my apartment building. My heart dropped, but I dutifully took the gifts of food, gift cards and other presents, and went to the door of the family and knocked. When they opened the door, I was shocked– the family had an apartment full of kids, and had almost no possessions inside. They were so much worse off than me and Mary and Melissa. It put things in perspective, and I rarely felt sorry for myself again. I was thankful for what I had.

We all have a choice, to look down at our problems, or look up at our God, the Lord who provides (Genesis 22:14). As the apostle Paul wrote, “Set your minds on things above, not earthly things” (Colossians 3:1). A poet put it this way: “Two men looked out prison bars/ One saw mud, one saw stars.” It all depends on your perpsective, so let’s look up and be thankful for what we have.

Zoom Ten Commandments

ZOOM TEN COMMANDMENTS

(Source unknown)

1. Thou shalt not sit under a light with a fan lest thou incite others to have a seizure.
2. Thou shalt wear clothes if thine camera is on, cover thine nakedness.
3. Thou shalt mute thyself if thou art not speaking, especially if thou hast the sniffles or gas.
4. Thou shalt not sit in front of a light-filled window unless thou art in the witness protection program.
5. If thou shalt go to the bathroom, take not others with thee, love thy neighbor.
6. Thou shalt not private message someone gossip, the host and the Lord seest the transcript.
7. Warn others if thou art on a call lest they defile the meeting w/ an unseemly appearance.
8. Zoom not w/ someone else in the same room, the echo is an abomination.
9. Eat not w/ thine microphone on, it is an abomination
10. Be not content w/ screen time, face to face is better

How to Have a Lousy Marriage in Seven Easy Steps

Using a little reverse psychology, my friend Doug Munton hits the nail on the head with this list!

Doug Munton

Married or planning to marry? Want to make that marriage as unhappy, bitter and painful as possible? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Here are seven easy steps to having a lousy marriage.

1. Make your marriage all about you. This is Lousy Marriage 101. Don’t consider your spouse. Make it all about you, you, you. Forget their interests, needs or love language. Better to not think of them at all. Keep the focus of the marriage all about what you want, what you like and what you need. Is that so hard?

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12 signs that you’re from Mississippi

Photo by Bearded Texan Travels on Pexels.com

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

Are you from Mississippi? Then you should know the following:

  1. A “pack of Nabs,” is a package of crackers (as in “Nabisco”) in a wrapper.
  2. Kosciusko is pronounced Causey-ES-ko.
  3. When you need a shopping cart at Wal-Mart, you ask for a “buggy.”
  4. When you say you’re “fixin’ to git a coke,” you may be about to purchase a Pepsi, and if you’re “fixin’ to cut out the light,” you are about to turn off the light switch.
  5. Biloxi is pronounced bill-UX-ee. If you say bill-OX-ee, you are a Yankee.
  6. When you’re going to visit your parents, you say, “I’m gonna see mom and ’em.”
  7. The noon meal is dinner, especially if it is on Sunday at mom and ’ems.
  8. When you see a mother pushing a baby stroller, you tell her she has “precious cargo.”
  9. Saucier is pronounced SO-sher, but Gautier is pronounced GO-shay.
  10. You love to eat fried catfish with hush puppies and ketchup.
  11. Pecan is pronounced puh-CAHN. (If you say PEE-can, you are either a Yankee or from southern Georgia.)
  12. You take a pecan pie to dinner on the grounds at church after revival meeting, and to the family meal at church after a funeral, and to mom and ’ems for Sunday dinner.
  13. BONUS: You pronounce it: Miss-IPPI.

Articles dealing with grief

Photo by Kat Jayne on Pexels.com

Over the years, I and guest writers have posted several articles on this blog dealing with the subject of grief. Here is a list of them, for your reference:

“How do I deal with the suicide of someone I love?” https://bobrogers.me/2017/01/11/how-do-i-deal-with-the-suicide-of-someone-i-love/

“20 Sayings that Do Not Bring Comfort” by Jan Moore  https://bobrogers.me/2015/06/26/guest-blog-20-sayings-that-do-not-bring-comfort/

“Expressing Sympathy During the Holidays” by Suzie Kolber https://bobrogers.me/2014/11/22/guest-blog-post-expressing-sympathy-during-the-holidays/

“What a hospital chaplain learned about ICU waiting when his own father died” by Brian Williamson https://bobrogers.me/2016/10/31/guest-post-what-a-hospital-chaplain-learned-about-icu-waiting-when-his-own-father-died/

Book review: “When Will I Stop Hurting? Dealing with a Recent Death” https://bobrogers.me/2013/11/19/book-review-when-will-i-stop-hurting-dealing-with-a-recent-death/

Top religious news of 2018

AsiaBibi

(Pictured above: Pakistani Christian mother Asia Bibi, and two of her children. Bibi was acquitted of blasphemy but is still in danger for her life.)

As the year comes to a close, let us look back with at the top religious news events of 2018. Here are seven of the top events:

*The Death of Billy Graham. Graham was the most prominent Christian of the 20th century, having preached the gospel to more people than any other person in history. He died on February 21 at age 99. How thankful we are that he ended well, faithful to the end.

*Bill Hybels steps down. Hybels was pastor of the Chicago-area megachurch, Willow Creek Community Church. He has been influential in his books and “seeker-sensitive” approach to church growth. Sadly, he was forced into early retirement on April 10 when the Chicago Tribune and Christianity Today published accusations of sexual misconduct and harassment. How we need to pray for healing for the victims, and repentance and restoration for Hybels.

*Paige Patterson is fired. Patterson was dismissed and then formally fired in June as president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, the world’s largest seminary, by the trustees. He had been accused covering up two separate instances of rape on seminary campuses where he was president, and of insensitive remarks appearing to excuse domestic violence. Patterson was one of the architects of the “conservative resurgence” in the Southern Baptist Convention that turned the nation’s largest Protestant denomination in a more conservative direction in the 1980s. This event was sadly reminiscent of Pastor Hybels and calls us to more prayer to always guard against sin.

*Supreme Court rules in favor of a Christian baker. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 7-2 in favor of Jack Phillips, a Christian Baker in Colorado who refused, on religious grounds, to make a cake celebrating a gay wedding. The ruling was specific to his case, saying the Colorado Civil Rights Commission was biased against Phillips. Although it did not establish an open door for Christian businesses to make conscientious objection to endorsing morally objectionable messages, it may have cracked the door open for such a ruling in the future.

*Pastor Brunson freed by Turkey. Andrew Brunson, a Presbyterian missionary to Turkey for 23 years, was released from prison on October 21. He had been jailed in 2016, accused of supporting terrorism (specifically accused of supporting Kurdish rebels and Turkish opposition leader in exile, Fethullah Gulen). Brunson denied the accusations, and evidence was lacking. U.S. President Donald Trump put pressure on Turkey for the release, and Christians around the world prayed for him. His release was cause for rejoicing and thanks for answered prayer.

*Synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh. Christians joined with Jews in mourning a horrific massacre in a place of worship, as a gunman killed 11 Jewish worshipers and wounded six others at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on October 27. The shooter, whom I will not dignify by naming, said, “I just want to kill Jews.” What a reminder to pray against hate, specifically anti-Semitism, which has been a blot on the history of Christianity, and does not reflect our Savior, who was Himself a Jew, of course.

*The acquittal of Asia Bibi in Pakistan. Asia Bibi is a mother of five, the only Christian in her village. In 2009 she had a disagreement with Muslim co-workers over sharing water, and they accused her of blasphemy against Islam. In Pakistan, blasphemy carries a death penalty, and the law is often used as a weapon to persecute Christians. The Pakistani Supreme Court showed great courage in acquitting Bibi, as it was under enormous public pressure to rule against her, despite there being no evidence. Sadly, despite the ruling and permission for her to leave the country for her safety, no nation has shown enough courage to give her exile. This calls for continual prayer in the New Year, and for efforts to convince our own nation to grant her exile.

 

Why I don’t preach or teach from the King James Version

Ps23KJV1611

(Photo: Psalm 23 in the original 1611 edition of the King James Version.)

Copyright by Bob Rogers.

I love the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. It is written in beautiful, literary English. Psalm 23 and many other familiar passages resonate in the KJV. However, I usually do not use the KJV when I preach and teach. Why is that? There are two main reasons.

  1. The English language has changed over the centuries. Many words that were clear when the KJV was written, are now confusing or offensive to the modern reader, simply because modern English is a different dialect. For example, the KJV uses the word “unicorn” nine times (Numbers 23:22; 24:8; Deuteronomy 33:17; Job 39:9-10; Psalms 22:21; 29:6; 92:10; Isaiah 34:7). Skeptics have made fun of the Bible because of this; however, hundreds of years ago “unicorn” used to mean an animal with one horn, like a rhinoceros. Over time, the word came to refer to a mythical animal, so modern translations use other terms, such as “wild ox.” Exodus 28:40 says to make “girdles and bonnets” for the priests (referring to sashes and headbands), 2 Kings 18:27 refers to men who “drink their own piss;” James 2:3 refers to “gay clothing” (referring to fine clothes), 2 Corinthians 6:12 says, “ye are straitened in your bowels (referring to holding back affection), and Philippians 3:20 says “our conversation is in heaven” because “conversation” meant way of life in Middle English, but today the word means speech, and thus would be completely misunderstood. I could go on and on, but you get the idea.
  2. The KJV is not based on the best ancient manuscripts. The Old Testament was written in Hebrew and Aramaic, and the New Testament was written in Greek. Bible scholars determined the wording of the original manuscripts by collecting and comparing thousands of ancient manuscripts. However, the oldest and most reliable manuscripts, such as the Dead Sea Scrolls of the Old Testament, were discovered and studied long after the King James Version was translated in 1611. Thus, it is ironic but true that newer translations use older and more dependable manuscripts as the basis for their translation. For example, the KJV includes the longer ending to the Gospel of Mark, which says that believers “shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents…” (Mark 16:17-18, KJV). These verses have been quoted by snake-handling sects, yet the earliest manuscripts of the Gospel of Mark end with Mark 16:8! Another example is 1 John 5:7-8 (a passage mentioning the Trinity), which includes additional words in verse 7, as well as all of verse 8, that are absent from every known Greek manuscript except four manuscripts written in Greek during Middle Ages. It is apparent that a scribe added these words to testify to the Trinity. There are other scriptures that attest to the Trinity, but this is not one of them. (Those KJV Only people who argue that “liberals have taken verses out of the Bible” are ignoring the fact that the chapter and verse number system was added to the text hundreds of years after the original writings, for our convenience in referencing passages.)

All of this begs the question, if not the KJV, what translation should one use? To answer that, I refer you to a previous post I wrote, What Bible translation should I use?

The Next IMB president

Doug Munton writes an excellent blog on what we should pray for in the next president of the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention.

via The Next IMB President

Guest blog: Why We Don’t Do Elf on the Shelf

ElfOnMarshmellows

(This guest blog is written by my daughter, Melissa Rogers Dalton. She and her husband Steven have two sons and live in Virginia, where she is an elementary school teacher, with an endorsement as a Reading Specialist.)

Article copyright by Melissa Rogers Dalton

When I first learned about the idea of Elf on the Shelf a few years ago, I was completely sucked in. I didn’t have any kids yet, but the idea of setting up an elf with all of these great little tricks greatly appealed to the prankster inside of me that has become dormant since my college days.

I mean, how cute are these!

Once Keagan was finally old enough to enjoy it, I brought it up to Steven and he immediately shut it down. He knows that I have a tendency to get overly involved in things like this and could picture me staying up way too late every night trying to concoct the perfect scheme for the next morning. Yeah, he knows me way too well… 😉

But over the past two years, I’ve decided he was right to say no for a completely different reason.

Teaching our children that they have to be good in order to receive gifts is completely opposite of what the gospel preaches and, therefore, goes against everything Christmas stands for.

You see, Jesus was sent to Earth because we couldn’t find our way back to God on our own. He is our Rescuer and Redeemer, and there is NOTHING we can do to earn his gift. Actually, the definition of “gift” says “a thing given willingly to someone without payment; a present.”

So this whole myth about Santa and his naughty or nice lists really should disappear.

I’m sure some well-meaning parent created it somewhere along the line because kids at this point of the year start going a little crazy, but we have to put an end to it. Even as adults, we struggle with remembering/understanding that our actions are not the path to heaven. Just listen for two seconds, and you’ll hear it all around. I had a coworker tell me just a few days ago that she was going to hell for saying something mean about someone else. Technically, yes you can, but stopping it isn’t going to get you to heaven either.

All we have to do is realize that we are beyond unworthy, but God sent us the perfect gift of His son to come, live, and ultimately pay the penalty for our sins with His life so that we could be reunited with Christ someday. Then we just accept that gift by choosing to follow Christ. That’s it. Our works will never be enough.

If you have an elf and want to continue your fun with it, by all means go ahead. I love seeing what creative schemes you create. But PLEASE stop telling your kids that they won’t receive Christmas this year if they don’t behave. Instead, preach the true gospel to them. If you need any ideas for ways to bring it down to their level without missing the importance, I highly recommend the Jesus Storybook Bible.

The reason I like this particular Bible for kids is because they end every story by bringing it around to Jesus and the gospel. It doesn’t matter if the story is about Leah or the actual birth of Christ. They all talk about the Rescuer coming to save us so that kids can understand that everything in the Bible points to Him. They aren’t just individual cool stories that happen to be in the same book.

There is also a FREE Advent Calendar that goes along with this Bible (it includes the actual scripture references as well if you don’t have/want this Bible). I know it may be too late for this year, but I plan on using it next year.

Merry Christmas, and God Bless!