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    You may not be the President, but YOU can be a leader

    This is a unique year to be a leader in your community.  2020 is full of hardship, uncertainty and political unrest. The fact that we are living through a pandemic and participating in a heated presidential election provides Christians a unique opportunity to show Christ in our spheres of influence. In an election year it is easy to focus on our local and national leaders. Our senses are heightened and bombarded with election news streaming in from every outlet. In our human frailness it is easy to be consumed with how the next leader will impact our lives for better or worse. Allow me to challenge you to go deep…

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    Good Friday- Following Jesus into the Light

    At the small, country church of my childhood, 3 crosses would be placed by the roadside shortly before the week of Easter. The crosses would be bare or draped in purple for a time and then early in the morning on Good Friday a black cloth would be placed around the middle cross.  Black, to symbolize the light of Jesus being extinguished and the heaviness of the world’s sin. It’s not just a figurative darkness, it was a reality for those in the presence of Jesus at the time of his death, for as Luke records: “It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three,…

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    Somebody, Turn on the Lights

    “The people walking in darkness see a bright light; light shines on those who live in a land of deep darkness.” Isaiah 9:2 NET I rarely see bright-eyed children in Christmas dresses and or plaid vests singing, “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” in a Sunday school program. The somber tone hardly seems appropriate for the joy of a children's Christmas pageant. This advent hymn focuses on a somber, troubled world waiting for the Messiah. Advent used to have little meaning for me, as a child. Instead, I looked forward to spreading buttercream frosting on Christmas cookies, singing “Silver Bells,” decorating a fragrant Douglas fir and opening crimson foil-wrapped gifts. But red foil…

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    Let it Be Light

    I don’t know where I’ve been the past six Advents at my church, but this year, I’ve been given the gift of Advent and the gift of hope. This year, I finally see why we need Advent—the season in which the church celebrates Christ’s first coming while also eagerly anticipating his second coming. Because here’s the truth. We don’t realize our immense need and desperate longing for the light unless we’ve first seen the gravity and weight of the inky darkness. And in just the past few months, there’s been a lot of darkness in my life and family. My beloved Granddad passed away unexpectedly, I’m battling severe chronic depression,…

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    They don’t call it work for nothing!

    War and turmoil, conflict, anger and moral decay confront us on every side.  The words of Francis Shaffer echo in my heart, “How then shall we live?” As we groan at the darkness, how can we make a difference for eternity? Where shall we turn today? What "works?" It helps me to recall that Jesus walked our planet in the flesh at the height of Roman rule. The Greco-Roman world was rife with idolatry, immorality, and all manner of depravity.  His own people, Israel, were hard-hearted and resistant to His message. How then did He live and how did He instruct His followers to “make a difference?” My mind returns…