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    Thankfulness and God’s Sovereignty

    Whoa! Started my day with a little conviction today–ouch. God laid it on me that I have not had a thankful, grateful heart lately! So I spent some time in the Word today looking at thankfulness. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 summed up a lot of what God desires in me: “Always rejoice, constantly pray, in everything give thanks. For this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (NET) The last part of that brief verse is at least as important as the first part. When I give thanks, I embrace what God wants for my life. I recognize He places in my life both the people I naturally love and the ones…

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    Morning Prayer

      Good morning, Lord.    I am grateful that, once again, you have offered me a new day as an incredible gift to unwrap and enjoy. Thank you that it is not a blank slate waiting to be filled, but a treasure chest beckoning to be explored. Thank you that it holds the glorious joy of your presence and the reassuring promise of your will. Help me to hold each new experience as a precious jewel, to marvel at and delight in. For this is the day you made (Psalm 118:24). From the rising of this morning’s sun to its setting (Psalm 113:3), may you be praised as I rejoice…

  • God works in the background of life
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    God Works in the Background of Life

    Have you had to wait for a very long time for God to answer a specific prayer of yours? You know that what you are asking is within His will. It matches up with what is promised in Scripture. But, it’s not happening. Did you think God was being lazy or had forgotten you? Maybe God has been preparing the background for answering your prayer today or in the future. That’s what God did for the Jews during the years before Jesus showed up for all to see. We celebrate Christmas beginning with Luke 1 and Luke 2—the births of John the Baptist and Jesus. But, have you ever considered…

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    God’s Sovereignty and Mattresses

      The truths from the Word I learned a few years ago continue to challenge me to trust God: "Remember what I accomplished in antiquity! Truly I am God, I have no peer; I am God, and there is none like Me, who announces the end from the beginning and reveals beforehand what has not yet occurred, who says, ‘My plan will be realized, I will accomplish what I desire." Isaiah 46:9-10 (NET Bible) I chuckle at the mattress commercials that say “Replace in eight.” How about “Just broken in, in ten” or “A taste of heaven at eleven.” However we decided to go with “Worn plenty in twenty” and replace…

  • The character of Father God, The God you can know and love
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    The God You Can Know

    His name is Jason. He’s in his early 20s, lives daily with physical difficulties so that he can barely walk. His father helps him walk to his seat at church and holds Jason up so he can help take the offering during the service. What captured my attention is the look of deep, deep love on the father’s face as he interacts with Jason, a son who will never be the star quarterback or ace pitcher or do any of those other “great” things a father might expect from his son. Jason’s father doesn’t look at him with disgust or annoyance because he squirms a lot and needs help to…

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    The Pain Train

           The Pain Train. All aboard. Like Mumbai’s commuter railway during rush hour, no one wants to ride it. No dining car and no sleep car. One thing is for certain—this locomotive is no luxury liner. My junk and I hauling at 1999 modem speed, I anticipate the very next stop. I want off this thing. But the train keeps moving. I run to the caboose and notice the train tracks behind me that disappear into oblivion. How long have I been on this thing? And who bought my ticket? What a cruel joke. I pray the train derails. I’ll rush to the front of the train and…

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    A Post-Election Search for Peace

    Is anybody out there glad that this presidential election is over? Woo hoo! I am! And my sister, who lives in a battleground state, rejoiced when the last political ad aired. According to CNN exit polls, the typical voter chose their candidate before September, yet we engaged in or endured a couple of additional months of ads, social media posts and pre-election anxiety. Since I took an unconventional route in the voting booth, I was not surprised when my candidate did not win. But I definitely feel concern about the next four years. However, the Word offers several principles that reassure me: 1. Romans 13:1 reminds me that “there is no…

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    God is Ready to Help You

    I did quite a bit of chaotic fun over the summer. I went here and there and everywhere. I visited my sisters, cleaned part of my attic, and helped whomever, whenever I could. Several weeks ago, however, something bit me. My fun summer stopped. Fear would now engulf me at the site of my bite.   What started as a “this is just a simple mosquito bite” turned into a “this could be a spider bite.” I knew something for certain—I got bitten and not just once, but thrice. The quarter-size area of blistering skin over my right knee spread out like a wildfire. I decided to do the logical…

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    Responding To and Remembering – #prayfororlando

    Our hearts are stirred and broken over the mass shooting in Orlando Sunday – the deadliest mass shooting in US history which left 49 dead and 53 injured. How do you compute this? How do you make sense of it? What do you do with all the questions, the feelings of violation, the abruptness of an act of terror and the personal fear that ensues? These questions have surfaced before in the Columbine shooting, 911, Sandy Hook Elementary School, the Boston Marathon attack, at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, in San Bernadino and will likely surface again. After I turned on my phone to check the weather Sunday morning…

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    Throwing Stones

    Six hundred stones plopped and splashed as they hit the surface of the Sea of Galilee and then sunk, never to be retrieved again. Each rock signified something of importance. Some represented long-held unforgiveness and bitterness toward a family member or friend. Other stones symbolized a wayward son or daughter, or even a spouse. And yet others signified unfulfilled hopes and dreams. Though the meanings of each rock differed, the lasting results were the same. As passengers aboard the Israel tour boats released their stones from their hands, they also released emotional and spiritual burdens from their hearts. As I threw my stone into the Sea of Galilee, I quietly…