August 19, 2017

A Testimony of God’s Faithfulness

One of my earliest memories is of the day I was forever adopted into God’s family. I was three years old, and my mom and I had just left a midweek Bible study at someone’s home. While the adults met in one room, the other kids and I enjoyed some play time, snacks, and a brief Bible lesson. I don’t remember who taught us, but I’ll be forever grateful for their willingness to serve! As we left that day, I was overcome with curiosity about the process of salvation.I remember sitting in the front seat of the car (that was before airbags and mandatory back-seat riding for children), and asking my mom how it worked—how a person could “get saved.” She talked me through acknowledging my [...Read More]

The Greatest Love: Before Our Story Began

Even before our story began, He knew how it would end. When He created the earth in perfect beauty, He knew it would decay under sin's curse. When He created mankind from the dust of the ground, He knew that creation would utterly reject his Creator. When He breathed life into man's body, He knew man would use that breath to curse and deny His love. When He promised an offspring who would bruise the tempter's head, He knew that offspring would be part of His very being, God Himself. When He flooded the world because of man's wickedness, He knew mankind would survive to become even more wicked. When He promised a son to Abraham, He set in motion a chain of events that [...Read More]

God of the Impossible

What are you facing right now that seems impossible? Maybe a health problem like cancer or infertility. Maybe an estranged loved one. Maybe a financial hurdle that seems insurmountable. Maybe a dream that seems to be dying a slow, painful death. We all have something, right? Some situation that looks impossible on paper. Something that feels hopeless or unredeemable. Abraham and Sarah must have felt like that. God had promised a child who would become "many nations," and yet He hadn't delivered. So they took matters in their own hands, and Abraham committed adultery with Hagar at the insistence of his wife. And they got a son -- but they also got more than that, as it brought a new [...Read More]

What Better Reason to Give Thanks?

I hope you're praising God for all that you plan to enjoy this Thanksgiving -- a warm cozy home, a nourishing and satisfying meal, laughter and fellowship, family and friends, break from routines, new memories in the making. I hope you thank Him specifically for all the blessings of everyday comfort and happiness, and all the intangible joys of this life. In the midst of all that joyful gratitude, take some time to meditate on God alone. Praise Him for who He is at the very core of His being -- aside from all the tangible things He has done for you -- and exalt Him for His sake alone. Praise Him because He is GOD, and greater than we can comprehend. Praise Him because He is KING [...Read More]

Your Suffering Is Not About You

Life is not about me, and it is not about you. Life is about God. Everything that happens in this life -- every person who is born and every one who dies, every major world event and every minor 'coincindence', every joy and every pain -- is all about God, and His plan, and His desires. Which means that everything in me must be about God. My thoughts, my desires, my words, and my emotions -- and even my suffering -- must be about GOD, rather than me. About what pleases HIM, what brings honor to HIS name, rather than what is convenient or comfortable for me. Author and theologian Layton Talbert explains this further in his book Beyond Suffering (affiliate link), an in-depth study on [...Read More]

Your Theology Affects Your Vision

Did you know that you are a theologian?  Yes, you -- moms and teens and cubicle workers and design enthusiasts and fitness gurus. If you are a Christian, then you are a theologian. It doesn't matter whether you're in seminary, or studying big theological tomes on your own, or even serving full-time in a church or mission. You are a theologian, because you have certain beliefs about who God is and what He does. You believe certain facts to be true, and certain facts to be false. You believe in specific characteristics of God, and have a particular belief about His purpose and plan for your life. These all make up the sum of your theology. Because theology, at its core, is simply the [...Read More]

He Who Keeps You

When you feel hopeless or helpless... When you feel utterly alone... When your heart breaks... When you shrink under fear... When you almost drown in grief... When you fall down again and again... When you can't see the light... When you're blinded by the pain... When you need courage, refuge, hope... Look to Jesus. He is your creator, your light, your shield. He who keeps you will never falter. He will cherish you in His everlasting arms. Know someone who needs this comfort today? Tweet about it! Psalm 121, Psalm 84:11 [...Read More]

Who Is God?

Who is your God? (click here to read part 1) Our view of God colors our view of circumstances, of people, and of life itself. So what is your view of God? And how does it compare to what God Himself says He is? Let's look at a few attributes of God which are detailed in His Word: God is unchanging. He is the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. He is called our rock, an immovable part of nature which remains stable, even when the land or sea around it is tumultuous and wind-blown.  This is the very basis of His nature – for if He changed from one day to the next, how could we trust anything else about Him? He is eternally the [...Read More]

Who Is Your God?

Let’s try a quick exercise. Grab a piece of paper and a pen. Now take about sixty seconds and jot down as many words as you can think of to finish this sentence: "God is ________________." And, GO!   {...cue Jeopardy theme song...}   Okay, STOP. How’d it go? Was it easy? Or harder than you expected? Do you like what you came up with? And – the real question – why is it important, anyway?  Because your view of God colors your view of everything else... If you believe He is loving and kind, then you will trust Him even when your way is rocky and dark. If you believe He is cold and uncaring, then you will struggle to accept uncertainty, or see suffering [...Read More]

What is God’s Sovereignty?

Excerpts from Chapter 5 of Touching the Hem. What, exactly, is sovereignty? It combines so many elements of what makes God who He is: His power over all things, His wisdom to use this power rightly, His providence and sustenance each day for His creation, and His ability to use His attributes to remain actively involved with His creation. He is the Sovereign or the King over all -- He ordains and rules over all. He is in control of all things, not just the good but also the seemingly bad. {<--tweet that!} He makes poor and rich, brings low and exalts. He has mercy on whom He wants, and hardens whom He wants. He is the head of all principalities and powers, and works all [...Read More]