A Heart of Compassion

My friend and co-laborer, Judy Cintron, wrote today’s blog post.  She has a heart of compassion and a heart to serve the Lord.  -Brandon I’ll never forget the story of a young mom from Chicago. Her husband lost his job and they lost their home. The three kids piled in the car for the long drive to California for a new beginning. Her husband had big dreams about a fresh start but had no job lined up or any concrete plans. Like any family with three young kids (two were in […]

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Being Missional

Jody Janz has worked faithfully alongside me in ministry for the past several years. She and her family are good friends of ours and they understand the concept of relational discipleship like few others. Jody’s heart for missions and her gift for writing will bless you as they have blessed me.  –Brandon My family and I were missionaries in South Africa for eight years. I had many opportunities to see God do amazing things in the lives of the Tswana people. I remember one day I brought a big bag of […]

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A Simple Life

Is life more convenient today? Do we have it easier than those that plowed dirt with their livestock or canned their own vegetables? My kids have often told me that I was born in the wrong century. I’m not quite sure how to take that, but I know there is some truth in it. I love the simplicity of life in spite of the hardships that presented themselves for those that lived off the land. Maybe you are like me. Are there times you find yourself wanting to take anything […]

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Shoring Up

Wow, did it rain! It was mid-September during elk season. Ominous storm clouds had been passing overhead for days. We could feel the weather changing, almost like it was about to unleash a beast of a storm. My hunting partner Tony and I stayed optimistic and hoped for the best. The elk hunting that week was outstanding, and we had so much fun camping and enjoying the time in God’s creation. We tried to ignore the possibility of the elements bringing our hunting to a soggy end. That positive outlook […]

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Spiritual Seasons

Where are the beautiful fall colors? That question runs through my mind now that I live in Houston, Texas. In the Pacific Northwest at this time of the year, the orange, red and yellow colors explode from the trees. It is a bit of a paradox for me. I love the warmer weather of Houston, but miss the changing of the seasons. I especially miss what the change of season brings. In many parts of the world, the fall season brings cooler weather and often the end of a harvest. […]

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Living Water

Driving across Ethiopia’s rural landscape can be both inspiring and confusing. The beauty sometimes leaves me feeling like I am in the middle of some National Geographic Documentary. Huge Eucalyptus trees, dense banana groves and coffee plants fill the countryside with a green beauty we just do not see in North America. But as I said, it can also be confusing. The chaotic traffic patterns with near head on collisions are common on most roads. They can leave you clenching muscles you didn’t know you had. I’m telling you as […]

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Voracious Vines

The theme of Punch and Press, and of Brandon’s life, is developing people and cultivating potential. True to his nature, and to the roles he plays in my life, pastor, friend and boss, Brandon challenged me to grow when he asked me to write a guest post for Punch and Press. I’m so thankful that he shoves me right out of my comfort zone on a regular basis! – Lisa Malstrom voracious: (adj.) excessively greedy and grasping The last few years have comprised a particularly busy season of our lives. My […]

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My jaw truly dropped!

Flying to the heart of the Africa was not my first leap across the big pond. Australia, Thailand, Malaysia and Israel are just a few of the exciting places I had been able to visit before my first trip to the Dark Continent. My stomach turned several times from both nerves and also just physical issues. Six weeks before our flight, I had undergone surgery due to a gastrointestinal illness, and probably should not have even been crammed in my tiny Ethiopian Airlines seat. Nonetheless, God had called me to […]

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Knowledge Does Not Equal Growth

Technology today allows almost any person at any time to access volumes of knowledge via the Internet. From winners of World Series to hunting strategies (ok those are my searches), one can gain knowledge at an incredible rate of speed. This technology I find useful in many areas of life, even when prepping for a sermon. But finding commentary and interesting historical facts for a sermon does not mean that I have applied the Scriptural principle in my life, though. Following my blog, you quickly learn I love the outdoors, […]

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What Path Should I Take?

“Amen.” Tony and I finished our prayers, lifted our heads and looked at each other with great satisfaction. We had located the beautiful bull elk the Lord blessed him with that day. My great friend and hunting partner, Tony, had just harvested his first trophy elk, and I could not have been happier for my friend. We had worked hard and executed our strategy. Even more importantly, Tony had prepared himself by knowing which trail was the right one to stand on. By nine o’clock that morning, Tony and I […]

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