Daily Archives: March 18, 2019

March 18 Walking in Victory

Scripture Reading: 2 Corinthians 1:1–7

Key Verses: 2 Corinthians 1:3–4

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

When you are suffering—whether it be a personal tragedy or one of public magnitude—what do you do? Do you tell others about it? Do you hide it in hopes of denying it? Do you pray that the Lord removes it?

How we respond to tragedy provides us a unique opportunity for the type of spiritual growth that results in victorious Christian living. Once we trust Jesus Christ as our Savior, the rest of our days are devoted to growing. While we would often choose otherwise, the pain we suffer or tragedy we experience is useful.

Second Corinthians 1:4 tells us that we suffer so that God can comfort us. The first usefulness of hardship is for us to grow in our knowledge of God. We will soon know His comfort when we reach out in times of hurting. How could we know this aspect of our Father’s love if He didn’t allow our hearts to break?

The second point of practicality for our suffering is so that we can comfort others. Anyone who has ever experienced real heartache understands how unfulfilled it feels to be thrown shallow phrases in the midst of turmoil.

Yet how would we as humans be able to offer anything more than fluffy words to each other were it not for the deep, penetrating comfort we ourselves have received from the Lord? Know that your pain is real. It is important to the Lord. Your suffering, in fact, is precious to Him. By it, He reveals Himself to you and all those who come in contact with you.

Lord, I seek Your embrace in my pain. Help me not to seek comfort longer than I need but, rather, to share that comfort with others.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (2006). Pathways to his presence (p. 81). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

March 18 Measuring Your Wealth

Scripture Reading: Romans 10:8–13

Key Verse: Romans 10:13

Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.

If someone asked you if you are wealthy, you probably would respond negatively.

“I pay my bills and have a little left over. I do better than some, but I am certainly not wealthy.”

But did you know that in Christ Jesus you are immensely wealthy?

“I do not feel wealthy. From all indications, primarily my pocketbook, I definitely am not affluent.”

You are using the wrong standard. The things that man honors, God despises. By God’s measuring stick, you possess extraordinary riches. As a believer, you have the riches of God’s grace bestowed upon you through the gift of His Son, Christ Jesus.

There is no circumstance, no problem, no obstacle, that you face apart from the lavish grace of God. He gives wisdom, strength, guidance, patience, and love without limit. You are a wealthy saint because you have all the resources you need for life on earth, and in heaven, in the person of Jesus Christ.

God’s help is available whenever you need it. Eternal life is yours forever. His undeserved blessings overflow into your heart daily.

You are a wealthy saint. The treasures of a new life in Christ are completely yours.

Master, thank You for bestowing Your riches on me. Thank You for the treasures of my new life in Christ. Eternal life. Blessings of wisdom, strength, guidance, and patience. Love without limit.[1]


[1] Stanley, C. F. (1999). On holy ground (p. 81). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

03/18/2019 — Wretched

WR2019-0318

•Francis Chan defends himself
•Should we share the stage with heretics to provide correction?
•Matthew 18 does not apply to public error
•Help for reading the Bible
•Why didn’t Jesus just say “I am God”?
•10 reasons the Bible esteems women, from Cripplegate
•Why Go Fish didn’t hit it big
•What you can’t learn from General Revelation

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via 03/18/2019 — Wretched

President of Evangelical Financial Accountability Group Fined for Falsely Claiming to be a CPA — Julie Roys

As President of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA), Dan Busby is responsible for enforcing ECFA’s standards of ethics among the 2,300 nonprofit groups and churches that the ECFA accredits. Busby also speaks nationally on financial accountability. And he’s written numerous books including, TRUST: The Firm Foundation of Kingdom Fruitfulness—a book equipping leaders of “Christ-centered ministries” to “be intentional about building and maintaining trust.”

Given that the ECFA and Busby’s platform rely on trust and integrity, one would expect Busby to be above reproach. Yet according to the Virginia Board of Accountancy (VBOA), Busby was fined $9,000 in 2016 for the unlicensed use of the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) title on at least 38 publications, his personal website, the ECFA’s website, and the Church Law & Tax website.

The VBOA also required Busby to pay an additional $1,000 administrative fee to cover the VBOA investigation. And the board ordered Busby to remove the CPA title from all “signage and any and all listings” until Busby again became licensed.

“Given that the ECFA and Busby’s platform rely on trust and integrity, one would expect Busby to be above reproach. Yet according to the Virginia Board of Accountancy, Busby was fined $9,000 in 2016 for the unlicensed use of the CPA title . . . “

According to the complaint submitted to the VBOA, Busby allowed his CPA license from the state of Kansas to lapse in 2000, two years after moving to Virginia. Then from 2000-2015, Busby was not licensed as a CPA, though he repeatedly claimed he was. In December 2016, Busby obtained a CPA license from the Virginia board, which remains active.

According to the VBOA complaint, Busby falsely represented himself as a CPA on multiple books published by Zondervan between 2000-2015.  These included “The Christian’s Guide to Worry-free Money Management,” and numerous editions of “The Zondervan Minister’s Tax & Financial Guide” and Zondervan’s “Church and Nonprofit Tax & Financial Guide.”

I contacted Zondervan for comment, but the publisher did not respond.

Busby also was listed as a CPA on numerous books published by the ECFA between 2000-2015. These included “Charitable Giving Guide for Missionaries and Other Workers,” “Donor-Restricted Gifts Simplified,” “The Independent Audit and the Audit Committee,” and multiple editions of “Preparing Tax Returns for Clergy” and “Reporting Procedures for Congregations.”

Busby was also listed as a CPA in ECFA newsletters between 2000-2015, as well as on multiple websites, the National Directory of Registered Tax Return Preparers and Professionals, and Busby’s LinkedIn account.

Brian Taylor, a former CPA who now works for a small consulting company in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area, sent me the VBOA complaint, which he said he researched and submitted four years ago. Taylor noted that Busby had worked as a CPA for 31 years before coming to the ECFA, and said his misrepresentation was intentional and inexcusable.

“With Busby, it was a 15-year pattern of intentional fraudulent inducement to sell books and enrich his pocketbook and his reputation,” Taylor said. “This was no accident. . . . He knew he didn’t take any CPE classes for 15 years. You can’t do it for 31 years and then suddenly forget. CPAs are reminded annually.”

“This was no accident. . . . He knew he didn’t take any CPE classes for 15 years. You can’t do it for 31 years and then suddenly forget. CPAs are reminded annually.”

In his complaint, Taylor also asserts that Busby’s misrepresentation was especially egregious because of his position with the ECFA. “The Virginia Board of Accountancy must take into account that Mr. Busby is not just a simple tax preparer who didn’t keep up on his CPE (continuing professional education),” Taylor wrote.

“Mr. Busby’s current role as President of ECFA is to enforce (ECFA’s Seven Standards of Responsible Stewardship) among all member nonprofits, as the basis for the public trust in nonprofit fundraising and responsible stewardship of trust funds throughout America. And yet . . . Mr. Busby freely chose to commit intentional acts of wrongdoing over his entire 15-year tenure at ECFA, that repeatedly violated the ECFA Standards, the Code of Virginia, and the AICPA (American Institute of CPAs) Code of Professional Conduct.”

Virginia law prohibits a person who does not hold a Virginia CPA license from using the CPA title in Virginia. Similarly, the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct states that a member discredits the profession if the person “makes claims about the member’s . . . qualifications in a manner that is false, misleading, or deceptive.” This would include “any representation about CPA licensure . . . that is not in compliance with the requirements of the relevant licensing authority.”

Recently, Busby and the ECFA have come under increased scrutiny for its longstanding accreditation of Harvest Bible Chapel, despite glaring financial improprieties there. Last Wednesday, I confronted the ECFA publicly for accrediting Harvest. And on Saturday, the ECFA finally suspended Harvest’s ECFA accreditation. But the Harvest debacle has raised questions concerning the ECFA’s effectiveness to hold member groups accountable.

In a statement released today, the ECFA defended its president. The statement said that Busby learned that he was not in compliance with Virginia’s accountancy laws in 2015 and has since rectified the problem. “While Dan’s use of the CPA designation complies with the laws of Kansas—where he was originally and still is certified—he had no idea that his use of the designation could possibly not be in compliance with Virginia law,” the statement said. “Dan, of course, was mortified to learn of any possibility that he was not in full compliance as he has made it his life’s work to help organizations pursue integrity.”

The statement added that Busby “has never held himself out as offering public accounting services as a Virginia CPA.” And it noted that Busby has since completed more than 180 hours of continuing professional education and settled the matter with the Virginia Board. “Dan is glad to have the matter resolved and he deeply regrets the oversight,” the statement said.

“Dan, of course, was mortified to learn of any possibility that he was not in full compliance as he has made it his life’s work to help organizations pursue integrity.”

However, the ECFA statement is not completely accurate. To use the title of CPA in Kansas, one must obtain a CPA certificate, as well as a permit to practice. Though Busby had an active Kansas CPA certificate from 2000-2015, his Kansas permit lapsed in 2000, and remains lapsed.

Also, according to the AICPA, “any action initiated by a member that informs others of his or her status as a CPA . . . constitutes holding out as a CPA.” Not only did Busby use the CPA designation from 2000-2015 on his website, bio, and in his books, he also prepared the ECFA 990 tax returns and was listed as a CPA in online directories.

Taylor said he stands by his claim that Busby’s violation was intentional and not an “oversight.” In addition to the facts already cited, Taylor noted that Busby did  not use the CPA title when he signed a letter in 2011 that was submitted to the IRS, nor in a 2013 report that was submitted to U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley. The “logical conclusion,” Taylor asserts, was that Busby “was afraid he might be found out and embarrassed, so he concealed the CPA where the risk was higher.”

According to the ECFA statement, the organization’s board was informed of the issues with the Virginia board “as it developed.” The statement adds that the board “continues to wholeheartedly support Dan in his role as ECFA president and in all his endeavors.”

Interestingly, Busby’s base salary at the ECFA in 2015 was $193,218, according to the ECFA 2015 990 tax form. However, in 2016, the year of the Virginia board sanction, it jumped 26-percent to $242,563. And in 2017, the last 990 available online, Busby’s base salary was $254,979.

One of the seven areas covered in ECFA’s seven standards is compensation setting for leaders of its member organizations. The other standards deal with use of resources and compliance with laws, doctrinal issues, governance, financial oversight, transparency, and stewardship of charitable gifts.

via President of Evangelical Financial Accountability Group Fined for Falsely Claiming to be a CPA — Julie Roys