Thursday, July 23, 2020

Why Do I Feel So Alone?

 “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified…for the LORD your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.” - Deuteronomy 31:6

Last year Cigna Health Care surveyed over 10,000 Americans about loneliness. The researchers found that 61% of respondents—more than three out of five American adults—reported dealing with some level of loneliness. 71% of Millennials (adults in their late 20s or 30s) reported feelings of loneliness. And a whopping 79% of Generation Z-ers (older teens and adults in their early 20s) reported dealing with loneliness. And just think—this study was done before COVID. These numbers have undoubtedly climbed since the stay-at-home order.

Loneliness takes a huge toll on our physical, emotional, and spiritual health. Studies show that chronic loneliness can lead to depression, anxiety, cutting, heart conditions, substance abuse, and even dementia. People who deal with chronic loneliness have a harder time recovering after a serious illness or surgery. Many health experts say that chronic loneliness harms our health about as much as smoking 15 cigarettes a day—and it’s much more common.

So, don’t be surprised if you’re wrestling with loneliness, especially during the COVID pandemic. Did you know that some of the greatest heroes in the Bible experienced loneliness? Elijah, Job, Esther, Jeremiah, and even King David all had times when they felt lonely, isolated or abandoned. And please never forget: Jesus understands your loneliness because he, too, experienced it. We’re told in Isaiah 53:3 that Jesus was “despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows…. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.” And as Jesus hung on the cross, paying the price for our sin, he felt ask if every one of his friends had turned his back on him. It even felt as if God the Father had turned away from him. So, Jesus cried out in Matthew 27:46, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Have you ever felt that way? Have you ever been lying in your bed all alone and felt as though even God had left you? There IS hope. And not surprisingly, it can be found in God’s word. I’d like to share three prescriptions from the Bible for your loneliness:

Prescription #1: Take your eyes off yourself and your problems, and focus on Jesus.  We read in Hebrews 12:1-3, “Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles…. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” You have pain in your life. So did Jesus. You feel rejected. So did Jesus. You’ve experienced indescribable loss. So did Jesus. And he overcame it all. So will you if you fix your eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of your faith.

Prescription #2: Repent. Turn from your sin. You may say, “Hey! Wait a minute! That’s not very encouraging. If I’m feeling all alone, you’re telling me that one of the remedies is to repent?”  Yes, I am. The honest truth is: Sometimes we FEEL all alone because our sin has LEFT us all alone. We may be dealing with loneliness because of our own dumb choices. We’ve burned bridges with our family and friends. We’ve held onto bitterness and unforgiveness. We’ve been selfish. As a result, we’re more alone than we should be, and we’re left feeling lonely. Sin certainly isn’t the only cause of loneliness. But it’s a common cause that we can’t ignore. Acts 3:19 says, “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.”

Prescription #3: Spend quality time with God and with other Christians. Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:28-30). Don’t you want that? Don’t you want rest for your soul? Don’t you want to stop carrying the heavy burden of loneliness and replace it with a lighter burden? Then spend quality time with Jesus and with other Christians. Proverbs 18:24 says, “A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” God wired into your heart a need for a active relationship with Him and a need for active relationships with other Christians. So, make fellowship with God and with other Christians a priority.

Now, I’ll give you three bonus prescriptions for loneliness that are scientifically-based and proven to work: Prescription #4: Get out in nature. Loneliness intensifies when we’re stuck inside four walls. Prescription #5: Exercise. Exercise releases endorphins in our brains--God’s natural mood boosters. Prescription #6: Get a pet. I believe that pets are a wonderfully sweet gift from God. So, if you’re feeling lonely, I encourage you to get one, or at least spend some time with someone else’s.

Finally, if you are struggling with loneliness, discouragement or depression, there are caring counselors available night or day to talk with you and encourage you. You can find resources at or I urge you to reach out to them.

The reality is …God is always there. And there are Christians ready to be there for you, too. We ARE all in this together. You are not alone.

Dane Davis is the Pastor of Impact Christian Church. Please join us for our live outdoor worship service Sundays at 9 a.m. at 17746 George Blvd. in Victorville. Or, join us online at 10 a.m. on our YouTube channel (Impact Christian Church) or on Facebook.

Monday, July 20, 2020

Will the Church Survive COVID-19?

“I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” - Matthew 16:18

It’s been about a month and a half since thousands of churches across America re-launched in-person services. After two and a half months without Christian fellowship, you would think that Christians would have flooded back into their church buildings. But they didn’t. Instead, a large number of Christians across our nation have chosen NOT to return to church yet. As a pastor, that really concerns me.

Now, due to California’s current surge in COVID cases, the governor has issued an order to suspend indoor operations of several businesses and organizations in hard-hit counties, including all of Southern California. The order applies to salons, shopping malls, family entertainment centers … and churches. This presents another setback to churches that were just getting back on their feet. Many churches are not set up for live outdoor services. Some churches are simply too large. Since gatherings are limited to 100 people, even if only half of a congregation of 3,000 wanted to attend a live service, that church would have to offer 15 services every weekend to handle everyone.

And it leads to the question: Will Christ’s church survive COVID?

The clear-cut answer is in the first book of the New Testament. In Matthew 16:18, Jesus says, “I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” Hades is the holding tank of the dead and it’s also the precursor to Hell. So, Jesus is basically saying, “I will build my church, and death won’t overcome it AND Hell won’t overcome it. Nothing in this life or in the life to come will stop me from building my church.” Will Christ’s church survive COVID? The answer is…Yes! Absolutely! There’s no doubt about it.

But now each of us needs to answer a harder, more personal question: Will YOUR FAITH survive COVID? Many of us who follow Christ don’t always realize how vital the church is to our spiritual health. Staying strong in our faith requires encouragement, accountability and community. Christians who become isolated from the church, because of COVID-19 or for any other reason, tend to become stagnant in their faith and drift away from Christ. Our faith rarely grows in isolation. That’s one of the main reasons Jesus started his church in the first place. For our faith to endure and grow, we need the encouragement and accountability of other Christians.

Now, I realize that some Christians can’t attend an outdoor, in-person church service right now: seniors living in a retirement community, those with health issues or mobility issues, members of large churches or of churches that are not yet equipped for outdoor services. If you’re in one of these situations, PLEASE … keep attending online—every weekend. Online church is the next best thing to going to an in-person worship service, especially if you keep it interactive. Leave a word of encouragement for other attenders online. Reach out to a prayer counselor or pastor and ask them to pray with you, online or by phone. Keep the communication going both ways.

But while some of you CAN’T attend in-person church services, many of you can. Outdoor church services are available in the Victor Valley (our outdoor service at Impact being just one of them). Many of us are scared of contracting the coronavirus or, God forbid, giving it to someone else. I get it! It’s true that the chances of contracting COVID-19 or passing it onto someone else is much lower if you are in isolation. But at some point you need to ask yourself: What are the risks to my physical and emotional and spiritual health if I don’t go to church? To you I would say this: “Please don’t allow fear to keep you away from church.” 2 Timothy 1:7 says, “For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.”

Every time we get out of bed in the morning, there’s a certain amount of risk. Every time we walk out the front door or get into a car or eat at Del Taco, there’s a certain amount of risk. But for years we’ve taken those risks because the benefits of going out and living for the glory of God far outweighed those risks.

The same is true during this pandemic. I can’t guarantee that you won’t contract COVID if you attend a live outdoor worship service, just as I can’t guarantee that you won’t get food poisoning if you drive through Burger King. There is a certain amount of risk involved in every choice we make as we live our lives here on earth. But my wife and I decided long ago that the benefit of prioritizing church for our family each week far outweighs the risks involved, especially since our church is following many of the CDC guidelines to lower the risk.

Bottom line: I want your faith to survive this pandemic. So, one way or another, make church a priority for you and your family every single week. If possible, be at an in-person worship service every week. That’s the best way to do church. But if that’s not possible, make online services a priority for you and your family every week. It’s critical that your faith survives COVID-19, and your kids’ faith survives COVID-19. And the best chance of that happening is by worshiping with other believers each and every week.

2,000 years before it was popular to say, “We’re all in this together,” Jesus was saying it to his church. If you are a believer and follower of Jesus Christ, then it’s never just about “you and Jesus.” It’s about “us and Jesus.” We’re in this adventure of faith … together.

Dane Davis is the Pastor of Impact Christian Church. Please join us for our live outdoor worship service Sundays at 9 a.m. at 17746 George Blvd. in Victorville. Or, join us online at 10 a.m. at, on our YouTube channel (Impact Christian Church) or on Facebook.

Monday, July 6, 2020

America the Beautiful?

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He chose for His inheritance.”

- Psalm 33:12

Saturday was the Fourth of July—Independence Day. And even though home firework displays exploded all across the Victor Valley, the truth is, many Americans have been wondering whether America is worth celebrating. Many of our neighbors don’t think that America is beautiful at all. Are they right?

The United States of America has long been called the land of opportunity. Over the past 244 years, millions of immigrants have flooded into our ports of entry to pursue the American dream. Every year around 900,000 immigrants become U.S. citizens, making the United States number one in the world for receiving immigrants. In fact, we have more than four times as many foreign-born citizens as any other country in the world. Why do so many people want to immigrate to America?

We’re told that our government and justice system are steeped in institutional racism. We’re told that our law enforcement is corrupt. If America is as bigoted as some people say it is, immigrants should be heading for the hills. Instead, America continues to be a magnet for people around the world seeking freedom from persecution because of their religion, ethnicity or social status. While most countries around the world have been stifling freedoms, America has been extending them: freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom to bear arms, freedom to vote, and, of course, the freedoms of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And few countries can match the freedoms we have in this country to pursue economic opportunities.  

On Independence Day, I’d like you consider how blessed we are to live in this country. Our founding fathers recognized that our freedoms and opportunities in life weren’t given to us by man—they were given to us by God. As Psalm 33:12 says, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He chose for His inheritance.”

Our country has been in such a desirable position because God gave us that desirable position. He gave us that position because for the better part of those 244 years, we have proclaimed God as our Lord. Our founding fathers wanted America to be a great nation—and they understood that if America was going to be great, America would have to be good. And in order for America to be good, its citizens would have to submit to the authority of God. They knew that if this nation was blessed, it would be blessed because God blessed it.

Proverbs 13:34 tells us, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people.” Remember that the word “righteousness” is just a fancy way of saying “right-ness.” When a nation does what God says is right, that nation will be exalted. But when a nation does what God says is wrong, that nation will be disgraced. So, has our nation been doing what is “right” or what is “wrong” in God’s eyes? The answer is: BOTH.

In 1964, the Civil Rights Act put an end to our nation’s racist Jim Crow laws. That was a God-honoring change that needed to happen, and I believe it exalted our nation. In 1989, we played a role in the fall of Communism in the USSR. And in recent decades, the U.S. has provided financial assistance and disaster relief to dozens of nations around the world including Haiti, Afghanistan, Ethiopia, and Kenya.

However, during these same 60 years, a growing number of our nation’s leaders and citizens have chosen to push God away and do what is biblically and morally disgraceful. In 1962 prayer was taken out of public schools. The following year the Bible was taken out of classrooms. In 1973, abortion-on-demand became legal. In the 1970s, no-fault divorce laws were passed throughout the nation. In 1980, the Ten Commandments were removed from classrooms. And in 2015, gay marriage was legalized.

These are just a few examples of the disgraceful things we have been doing. Our nation has continued to sing “God Bless America,” but our actions have—to a large extent—said, “God, we don’t want You in America.” We as a nation have become arrogant, and much of what we have been doing has been a disgrace in God’s eyes. If America continues in its arrogance and rebellion and refuses to repent, then we should fully expect that in the days to come God will remove His hand of blessing from our nation.

And when it comes to transforming our nation—turning it from disgrace to righteousness--the Church is the key, because the Church proclaims Jesus Christ, the only one who can fix all the mess in our nation. Remember what God says in 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If My people [that’s the Church] who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

Our country is far from perfect. But I believe that America’s founders were guided by God to form a nation and a government that is more biblically-based and less prone to corruption than just about any other government in the history of the world. No, America is not perfect. It’s always had its fair share of ugliness. But it continues to be beautiful in many different ways. And that beauty can and will grow if you and I will lead our nation back to Christ.

Dane Davis is the Pastor of Impact Christian Church. Please join us for our LIVE outdoor worship services Sundays at 8 a.m. or 9:30 a.m. at 17746 George Blvd. in Victorville. Or, join us online at 10 a.m. at, on our YouTube channel (Impact Christian Church) or on Facebook.

3 Heroic Lessons to Teach Your Kids

“Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”

Deuteronomy 6:5

This year on Father’s Day, I was reminded of what a privilege it is to be called “dad” by my four girls. Research has consistently confirmed that fathers are essential in a child’s life. Without a father in the home, we know that teens and young adults have an increased likelihood of struggling with depression and anger and drugs and crime. So, dads, your role in the home is much more important than you may realize.

If you search the pages of God’s Word, you will discover many heroic lessons that parents should pass on to their kids. Let me share with you three of the most important ones. And as an added bonus, these lessons aren’t just for dads and their kids. These four lessons are for everyone who desires to please God and follow Jesus Christ.  

Lesson 1: Trust in the Lord with all your heart (Proverbs 3:5). More than anything else that we want for our kids, we should want them to be saved. And they will never be saved unless they trust in the Lord with all their hearts. The following verse adds, “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”

One of the most important things we can teach our kids is how to make good and godly decisions. When they’re grown, our kids will have to make thousands of decisions without us. So, I encourage you, from time to time, to let your kids know about a big decision you have to make and invite them to join you in praying for God’s guidance. Ask your kids to stand at the crossroads and seek God’s wisdom with you. And when He gives it to you, trust Him and obey His leading together.

2. Fear the Lord and shun evil (Proverbs 3:7). I’m afraid most Christian parents these days do a much poorer job of teaching this lesson than our grandparents did. For one reason or another, parents today are hesitant to teach their kids to “fear” God. Churches used to preach more often about fire and brimstone, and Christian parents used to be better at getting the point across to their kids that disobedience equals pain and punishment.

Many older adults can remember getting the belt or the wooden spoon. Those of us who did quickly learned to have a healthy fear of mom and dad’s punishment. That being the case, it was easier for us to connect the dots and see that we should have a healthy fear of God’s punishment when we choose to rebel and sin.

3. Love the Lord with everything you’ve got. Deuteronomy 6:5 tells us, “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” And Jesus tells us in Matthew 22:38 that this is the first and most important command. That’s because if you obey this command, you will—at the same time—obey every other command. We must instill a heart for prayer in our kids. And while we’re at it, we must instill a heart for God’s Word in our kids. And we need to be instilling a heart for the church in our kids. Our kids should learn to love the Bride of Christ at a young age.

I’m deeply concerned about the younger generations of Americans. Too many of our youth are growing up without these lessons. Studies have shown that millennials—those who were born between 1981 & 1996—are the most unreached and unchurched generation in the history of our country. On their heels is Generation Z—those who were born roughly between 1996 and 2015—and early indications are that this group is faring even worse.

Parents, if we’re serious about protecting our kids from the pull of Satan and the pull of this sinful world, we have to teach them to love God with everything they’ve got. We have to prioritize prayer in our homes every day. We have to prioritize reading God’s word in our homes every day. We have to prioritize attending and serving at a church every week. And we have to be on our knees fighting for the souls of our kids and grandkids.

Many years ago, Dr. James Dobson’s dad said it well: “The greatest delusion is to suppose that our children will be devout Christians simply because their parents have been, or that any of them will enter into the Christian faith in any other way than through their parents’ deep travail of prayer and faith.”

Most churched kids stop attending church regularly during their college years—and for many, that decision is pre-meditated. While they’re attending church as teens, they fully intend to walk away from it once they move out. They plan to move OUT of mom and dad’s house and move ON from church.

That breaks my heart. And I hope it breaks your heart too. The spiritual lostness and apathy of our younger generations compel me to step up my efforts to be a better dad than I have been. I must be more dedicated and consistent in teaching my girls to Trust God, Fear God, and Love God. You and I must fight for the souls of our kids and grandkids. And then maybe…just maybe…their hearts will be set ablaze with an unquenchable love for God.

Dane Davis is the Pastor of Impact Christian Church. Please join us for our LIVE outdoor worship services Sundays at 8 a.m. or 9:30 a.m. at 17746 George Blvd. in Victorville. Or, join us online at 10 a.m. at, on our YouTube channel (Impact Christian Church) or on Facebook.