Preacher’s Blog Page
John McCranie’s blogs are what he calls “Visuables” which is a compound of the words “Visual” and Parables”.
John shares, “As I journey in life and ministry I tend to notice things that remind me of spiritual principles and insights. These blogs are designed to encourage greater trust in the God who reveals Himself to those looking.”
October 2020
Recently, our church secretary …
sent me a picture by text. It was taped to the glass doors of the church’s foyer. The warning is unmistakable, “CHRIST IS COMING 2021″. During these times of plague and disaster it’s no surprise believers think this is probable. The fact is that for the past several decades there has been mania fixated on the exact time of Jesus’ return. Entire denominations have experienced meteoric growth based on this sensationalism only to be later decimated by their prophet’s false predictions on when Christ will come back. Their disillusioned masses leave those churches and, sadly, many of those worshipers leave behind their faith. What is more depressing than false hope?                                                                                        More

August 2020
In 1989 . . .
I was preaching for a little congregation called the Fresno Church of Christ. My go to song leader was Chris, who was about twenty-six-years-old. Having a lot in common, we became good friends. We loved rock music, ping-pong and the great Sierra Nevada. Chris asked if I had ever done any backpacking. I replied that I loved to go camping but he insisted I hadn’t really camped until I backpacked way up in the high country. I told him I didn’t have the gear and he said it would be no problem to borrow a backpack and essentials.         More
July 2020
Negative. If there is word that captures…
our current quandary, that’s the one.  I know the news media thinks good news is boring news. It’s obvious the reason “human interest” stories featuring selflessly, kind acts are inserted into the final moments of the televised news hour are there to silence those who complain that everything reported is negative. Well, to news hounds everything important is negative. This is how it works: conflict, violence, injustice, scandal and disaster are sensational. Sensationalism draws big audiences. Big advertisers pay big bucks to have big audiences be swayed to buy their products or service. The motives for …                    More
May 2020
Turlock Church has…
some wonderful kingdom quilters. They are busy little bees in their homes and in the fellowship hall (when allowed). Perhaps we should call them “Q-Bees?” They make quilts for people who really need them. I donated some to Julien Elementary to help impoverished students stay warm. Our sisters also give quilts out of their love. The following story, of unknown authorship, causes me to appreciate my “sewing sisters” even more. Enjoy.

As I faced my Maker at the last judgment, I knelt before the Lord …        More 
April 2020
Dear Visuables reader,

Last Sunday morning in my online sermon, I opened with remarks about Mel Gibson’s PASSION OF THE CHRIST movie. Since then I have been surprised that so many of you have never seen it.  Perhaps you are like like my wife who heard how people’s hearts were crushed by the realistic flogging and crucifixion scenes and decided not to go through that. Perhaps you have given up on any Hollywood depiction of Jesus being faithful to the gospels (rightfully so). Maybe you read reviews that pointed out Gibson’s movie is biased by his Catholicism (true).  More

March 2020
On St. Patrick’s Day…
I often think of Clinton Storm, an elder friend of mine, who was a minister in Ojai, California twenty years ago. His shepherding heart and wisdom is shown in the tale below of how he dealt with a frustrating situation and how God was glorified in it.

A homeless man came to the church office for assistance. He was given food and discovered the building had a breeze-way that could provide a nice sleeping spot. One morning, the elder encouraged this “guest” to tell him his story of how he ended up begging for sustenance and sleeping on church property. The man was Irish. He left his parents, brothers and sisters in …                                                                                                     More
February 2020
Don McCullough writes …
in Waking from the American Dream that during World War II, England needed to increase its production of coal. Winston Churchill called together labor leaders to enlist their support.  At the end of his presentation he asked them to picture in their minds a parade which he knew would be held in Picadilly Circus after the war.  “First,” he said, “would come the sailors who had kept the vital sea lanes open.  Then would come the soldiers who had come home from Dunkirk and then gone on to defeat Rommel in Africa.  Then would come the pilots who had driven the Luftwaffe from the sky.”                                                               More
January 2020
It has never been easy…
to remain faithful to the Lord. There have always been influences and forces both internal and external seeking to undo our relationship with God. Deciding to be saved is critical but remaining in His grace is crucial as well.  Peter warns, “For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first.” (2 Peter 2:20).

Being a true disciple of Jesus doesn’t just happen.  It is not built solely on emotion or sentiment . . .  it is built on determination. If we have the goal to be acceptable to God when we face Him then we have a fighting chance of being with Him forever.                                         More

December 2019

In my most recent sermon…

in the series, “FAMILY PORTRAIT: Building a Better Home” I spoke of the reason God has placed children under the authority of their parents. I mentioned that there is a natural inclination of kids to rebel against that authority and hence the reason God commands kids to obey their parents.  As an adolescent I had a serious problem accepting my mother’s authority over me due to my lack of respect for her.                                                                              More

September 2019
There simply is not anything on earth…
more powerful than family. Family is definitely a God-thing. Family is where the Lord heals, lifts and saves. This world is harsh on families and the best way for Christians to remain healthy is to first understand and then follow their roles as revealed in Scripture. When men love their wives and are actively involved in their children’s faith, God blesses. When women respect their husbands and nurture their kids in wisdom, God blesses. When children honor their parents (flaws and all), God blesses. My Sunday morning sermon series this fall will explore the biblical roles we are to fulfill in our families. Bring your Bible and let’s look at our “Family Portrait.”                                                                More
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