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    Why Work?

      Cultures flourish and deteriorate based on how they answer these questions: Why do people exist? Is there some greater meaning to life? What’s our purpose in the here and now? Mark Twain said, “The two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why.” If we’re honest, we all want to know the why. So what if someone told you, “You were born to work.” Seriously? We understand the need to work, at least in terms of providing financial means for individuals and their families. And clearly “born to work” isn’t referring to living in captivity, so there must…

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    No More Masks

                  As the days grow shorter and golden leaves fall from trees, we pack up Halloween decorations in preparation for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Although a few costumes may linger in photos on the fridge, everything else is set aside for another year. However, there’s one thing that few of us ever put away: the everyday masks we live behind. We all have masks of one sort or another. Reasons vary. For some, our masks protect us from going too deep or being too real. For others, masks allow us to live more boldly as the alter ego we espouse. Still others crave physical and…

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    What Should I Do with Rejection?

    In an unfamiliar city, my family and I were searching for a quick meal before heading off to the airport. We spotted a restaurant that looked like it would work so we entered and asked for a table. We were promptly seated….and then our waitress arrived. In a rough and hoarse voice, she barked, “Do you want me to harass you and give you a hard time?” I was shocked and horrified. In an uncharacteristic manner of my introverted self, I quickly replied, “No, we don’t want that!!!” She said OK, and proceeded to take our orders. As other waiters and waitresses continued to badger their customers (and customers badgered…

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    Enjoying Halloween??? – Culturally Acceptable and Spiritually Divisive

      I did a definition search on the word “hallow.” The basic definition is, holy. I searched for the meaning of the suffix “een.” IIt is considered to be a contraction of the word “evening.” It seems to have in its definition the meaning of “not something” Evening is the time between day and night. It is neither. So what do Christians do with a holiday that is not holy but is between? October 31st has been dubbed Halloween. The name fits well. It is not truly holy, but it is not completely evil either, and considered by some even neutral. Some use this holiday to decorate in a fall theme,…

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    To Tell the Truth: Integrity and Social Media

    The United States has just past through a particularly contentious news cycle. What about in your country? Are people working out problems or are they viciously debating issues and name calling? I wrote this post several years ago, but its message still seems necessary today: Are you like me? Controlling my words is an area where I have to be vigilant. Lately negative social media posts are on the upswing, and lies and exaggerations are not uncommon. The “share” button is another potential pitfall. I am convinced that words matter—whether spoken or written. Psalm 34:12-14(NET) challenges me: Do you want to really live?  Would you love to live a long, happy…

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    Taking Thoughts Captive and How to Teach it

    Thoughts are a part of life. They happen. We can’t control when or what thought might pop into our minds. There seem to be as many thoughts that come from outside us as those that begin within. It is no different for our children. From the earliest age of forming thoughts, outside forces impose images in our minds that provoke an emotional response. Imagination is a wonderful gift for without it we could not begin to relate to the God we cannot see or touch.  Sadly, in a fallen broken world our imagination can be an instrument used to overwhelm us. I compare my thoughts to a massive school of…

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    You Can’t Have Your Cake and Eat It Too

    We have all heard the saying, “You can’t have your cake and eat it too,” but most of us don’t really live like we believe it. There are so many areas of our life where we try to live life without any consequence. That is after all the implication. If you eat the cake now, the end consequence is that you won’t have it later. Could there be an area of greater need to believe this truth than the area of our imaginations? I think not. Imagination is a wonderful gift from God. It is the place where most of us live. Ted Dekker, in his book, The Slumber of…

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    Nuggets of Truth in Narnia

    C. S. Lewis is truly a gifted writer. If you haven’t read his Chronicles of Narnia, it is never too late to dive into this world of talking animals, a wardrobe with a secret pathway into Narnia, and adventures that range from creation to the final judgment. Nestled in the context of the make-believe world of Narnia are many nuggets of God’s truth.One good example is found in the book, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader. This is a story of danger and courage with great insights on the issue of forgiveness. Forgiveness is a difficult issue for everyone. It is hard for us to admit that we need it and may…

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    What is Truth?

    Pilate’s famous question to Jesus “What is truth?” suggests that truth can’t be known or doesn’t matter.   His attitude contrasted with the words Jesus had just spoken: “For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice” (John 18:37). Jesus’s followers are to be of the truth—yes, truth about him, but also truth about everything.  Paul’s well-known passage defining love says it “does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth” (1 Corinthians 13:6). We should rejoice in investigations to uncover the truth and wrongdoing—even when we…

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    Teaching Children to Live Love

    Obedience is one of the universal things that both parents and teachers seek to produce in children. As Christians obedience done with a wrong motive may look like obedience to us but it falls short. When it comes to obeying God, the heart attitude is as important as the action. A simple observation of their actions will not be enough to prove Biblical obedience. Sometimes a child gets it right by accident. They didn’t intentionally decide to obey but circumstances were such that without thinking about it they chose the right action. There are children who obey for fear of the punishment and with resentment in their heart. Other children…