Much of the theology we attribute to Paul and the other New Testament writers didnâ€™t actually exist when they wrote their letters. Weâ€™ve read more into them than the original readers ever could have. I expect itâ€™s the Holy Spirit growing the understanding of Jesus. But, before they were scripture â€" dissected by doctorates, revered by reverends, an...Keep Reading
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It‘s true we often suffer some great disappointments, some expectations or plans we might have not always materialized. We may even feel like God’s left us hanging and that an illness or injury has taken him away from us. But remember, He is faithful. And the real upside of this is if we remain faithful we will live eternally with Him someday. ...
Love isn’t just for Valentines Day -- it’s what gets me up everyday. Love isn’t just for that one special someone -- it’s for everyone. The chance to care for and encourage those around me is an honor. Measure all things in your life by the “Rule of Love”. What would God have you do? What does love require? What breaks your heart, and what one thing can you do to help?...
Truth be told, I am not an elite athlete. When I was in kindergarten, I flunked “skip” (not sure how my self-esteem survived that report card, but that is another story). While early on, I was too uncoordinated to skip, I did play baseball, soccer, real football, and basketball when I was growing up. However, I was never endowed with the physical gifts to become what I call an elite athlete. What I do know though, is that God equipped me with the gifts to enjoy those sports and become the best athlete I could ever be....
There are many differences between God, as the Bible describes Him, and the Force of Star Wars but there’s a line from Han Solo in the new movie that sums it up. One of the new characters talks about how he’s going to do something that seems impossible and Han asks him how. The young man says, “I’ll use the Force,” and runs off. Han yells after him, “That’s not how the Force works, kid!” That’s not how a personal, caring God works either....
The plans of man will always fail, but the plan of God has already won its battle. If Christians are to actually make an impact in the world then they must collectively turn to the truths found in scripture alone. They must become engulfed in the transformative power of God through His word provided in the bible......
Godâ€™s grace is powerful! But so is dynamite. Both can be used for good or for devastating destruction. Iâ€™m a dedicated fan of grace, but today I explore its seldom-mentioned dangerous side....Keep Reading
Some days, I am just the court jester, a foolâ€¦ a buffoon, offering a little different look at things we all know and understand. So it is today. So, if my ramblings donâ€™t work for you, just consider the source. A fool....Keep Reading
I know Iâ€™ve lost many readers already by my title. They quickly skipped to something else, likely muttering, â€œHeretic!â€ under their breath. I donâ€™t blame them. Not everyone can bear to closely examine the bumper sticker that proclaims, â€œThe Bible says it, I believe it, and that settles it.â€...Keep Reading
Jesus told his audience at the Sermon on the Mount that they were salt and light in a world of bland darkness....Keep Reading
Amos, Noah, and other First-Testament prophets warned of doom to come if the people didnâ€™t turn back towards God. Their message produced dire prose, colorful metaphors, and qualified as fair warning, but it was completely ineffective and futile. Except for Jonah and maybe one or two other rare cases, the message wasnâ€™t compelling. It was easily dismissed and ...Keep Reading
Confession time: I love God but struggle to trust him, especially when life goes sideways. Recently, I reached for Brennan Manningâ€™s book Ruthless Trust for insight and guidance. Here is a summary of Ruthless Trust as distilled ruthlessly from Brennanâ€™s own words in the book....Keep Reading
You may not appreciate this article. Iâ€™m fine with that. You have every right to hold me accountable for my written words. If I write well and you get benefit, good. If I write poorly â€" I fail to make my points clearly or my points are stupid â€" or you believe Iâ€™m just wrong, my written words bear witness against me. Accountability is an occupational...Keep Reading
What is worship? I donâ€™t mean the five acts of worship â€" pray, sing, give, study the word, and eat the communion meal. Anyone can go through those motions in complete boredom. I want to dig deeper to the heart of worship....Keep Reading
If youâ€™re happy with your church, good. But, if you thrive on anxiety and turmoil, here is the quickest way I know to get your drama fix at church. If youâ€™re new to church and want to avoid the â€œland minesâ€ of church life, sidestep these....Keep Reading
The first step to building belief and faith is to separate fact from fiction. Believing in something doesn't make it so. Believing in the realities that God built into the universe, on the other hand, leads to strong, effective faith. Truth is our firm foundation. ...Keep Reading
Lifeâ€™s big moments rarely come from a single factor, but from a chain of small, contributing factors. God provides us with the â€œsecretsâ€, the seeds that lead to blessings, not tragedies. Read moreâ€¦ ...Keep Reading
God is holy. We are told to be holy, too. But wait! How can we be holy like God? What does that word -- holy -- mean, anyway? Today, we peek beyond the traditional definitions to the root meaning that ties and relates them. Yes, we can be holy like God, but not the way we always assumed. ...Keep Reading
Jesus calls us to be disciples, not the poorly-defined term â€œChristiansâ€. But thereâ€™s a popular notion that has sprung up in mainstream churches that confuses many disciples. Itâ€™s â€œChristlikeâ€. Read more. ...Keep Reading
Worship is more than songs and prayers and sermons (and even announcements!). It's about celebrating the worth and value of the One we worship. It's God's gift to you and me. Worship transforms us in a way that little else can. ...Keep Reading
Many are naturally suspicious of authority and have the scars to prove why. But authority is a fundamental principle of the physical and spiritual universe. Sometimes we follow it, sometimes we exercise it. Healthy authority begins with the fifth of God's Ten Commandments -- "Honor your father and your mother". ...Keep Reading
What's worse than spending your life struggling in hardship and pain? The answer: When the struggle is completely unnecessary. Wasted tears and sacrifices are the bitterest. Let's fight the battles God intends for us and completely bypass those he has already handled himself. ...Keep Reading
Gravity and nuclear forces hold the physical universe together. What holds the spiritual universe together, preventing us from fragmenting into separate specks of spiritual dust? It's Love. But love draws us so close together that bumps and bruises are inevitable. So God gave us lubricants to reduce the friction and heat that would otherwise destroy us as surely as a r...Keep Reading
How can we know the truth...the realities that God built into the universe? We never have all the facts, but we must decide what to believe. Here's the key: Doubt that leads to investigation. It works in the scientific world; it works in practical spirituality. Otherwise, we build our spiritual house on sinking sand....Keep Reading
The universe is built with all sorts of invisible laws and principles, forces and particles. But we know lots of these laws. Even though we can't actually see them, we can see how they behave. Gravity pulls downwards, lift pulls upwards, magnetism attracts and repels, but we've never seen any of these forces directly. God has shown us some of the universal laws that ar...Keep Reading
We sometimes talk about faith as if it was a special, church-only phenomenon. But in fact, faith is both practical and common. We use it every day, though we might not recognize it. We rely on faith when our eyes fail us....Keep Reading
I'm not a fan of "church" words. I don't mean technical terms – redeem, sanctify, and baptize, for example – that mean specific things and belong in church. I mean those words that we use out of habit long after we've forgotten why. My past is littered with lots of King James thees and thous, and spiritual-sounding words like mindful… words I never use in casual c...Keep Reading
How are you? Before they came to America, my foreign exchange daughters were told that Americans ask this question never expecting an answer. It's just a conversation starter. We're internationally known as insincere that way. It doesn't help that our canned response is an equally-insincere "Fine!"...Keep Reading
Who would have guessed back in the heady, space-race '60s that the most common use of computers in the 21st century would be solitaire?...Keep Reading