Blog

07.13.15

It's not easy to talk about these things. These are decidedly inconvenient and unpleasant truths.

But the apostle Paul did not hold anything back. He really wanted to tackle a question that he must have been asked many times. I know I have been asked this question more than once.

And the question is this: "What about all the...

Read More...
07.11.15

Life is often full of constant activity, consistent pain, and confusing issues. And frankly, there's quite a bit of pressure that goes along with all these situations.

If nothing else, we can simply end up feeling "busy, busy, busy!" on a constant basis. All of this is why it's so important to have a place of...

Read More...
07.10.15

Sometimes we feel like our situation or circumstances limit us. And that can be hard to take. We like to live our lives without limits.

But often the limits are not nearly as limiting as we think they are.

Paul demonstrated this when he came to Rome and was placed under house arrest, with a Roman soldier guarding him. It would...

Read More...
07.09.15

If you want to watch someone who was completely unafraid to put audacious requests before God, look no further than King Hezekiah of Judah. He was a master of bold prayer.

With Sennacherib and 185,000 of his best men surrounding the walls of Jerusalem, and ready to decimate Judah's puny homeland defenses, one would have thought that it...

Read More...
07.08.15

King Hezekiah was a rare breed. The thing that made him one of a kind was that he so implicitly trusted God. He trusted God so much that he was willing to demolish all the places where any idols were worshipped.

This kind of focus on one God alone -- this readiness to obey the first commandment -- had not occurred since the time of David...

Read More...
07.07.15

It sounds so simple, but it's really an impossible demand: Put God first. Place him above all other things, all other people, and all other powers.

Don't be afraid of anything else as much as you are afraid of God. Don't respect anything more than you respect God. Don't love anything, and don't trust anything more than you love and trust...

Read More...
07.06.15

Are you a learner? A curious person?

That's what Solomon was. He loved getting new information. When God offered to bless him in any way he wanted, Solomon asked for greater wisdom.

The Bible tells us that instruction is good, and it is especially good when it is filtered through trust in the Lord. Trust in God, with a steady flow...

Read More...
07.05.15

Sometimes when I read about Old Testament worship, I get a picture in my mind that more resembles a World Cup match, or an MLB playoff game, than it does a church service.

It seems that the singing is joy-filled, brash and enthusiastic, as people contemplate all that God has done for them. And loud shouts seem to often accompany the...

Read More...
07.04.15

The resurrection of Christ is the central teaching of Christianity. The empty tomb is the place where hope is given birth.

And hope is vitally important. Without hope, our hearts go cold. Our happiness soon dries up. Our love of others -- and God most of all -- evaporates.

Guilt and shame take over. Frustration and fear take hold...

Read More...
07.03.15

My aunt Mildred loved to restore furniture. And she was very, very good at it. Once, she even restored an old loom and got it working so that she could make various textiles on it.

But the most memorable of all were the pieces of furniture. When she got them, they would be ugly, old painted pieces of furniture. But when she was finished...

Read More...
07.02.15

"In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps" (Proverbs 16:9, NIV).

It's interesting the way Solomon puts this. Because I think it's the...

Read More...