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    Theology of Self-Care

    Is self-care selfish or unspiritual? Some churches and Christian circles say “yes.” And while today’s popular self-care strategies may have a bent toward self-serving interests, a biblical perspective of self-care is holistic, worshipful, and others-centered. Self-Care Involves All Aspects of Ourselves God designed us as complex, whole persons (Ps. 139:13–16). We do not—like a computer or machine—consist of parts, but encompass spiritual, physical, mental, emotional, psychological, and relational aspects in our intricate design. When we take care of ourselves, we can’t just target one aspect of ourselves. We need take a holistic approach to self-care. After my husband and I married, I moved from Lubbock to Dallas. In Lubbock, I…

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    The final victory

    Title: The final victory Aim: To be prepared for the Savior’s return. Scripture: Revelation 19:1–21   The song of triumph, Revelation 19:1–10   Revelation 18 narrates the diabolical nature of Babylon and the future demise of the sinister world system that Babylon represents. First-century A.D. readers would have associated this entity with Rome.   Imagine how joyous believers would be at the end of the age when the Lord destroys the demonic system of evil that has corrupted humanity since antiquity. Babylon’s demise would be so complete that no person would inhabit her again. Instead, only demonic spirits and unclean birds would make the place their hideout.   The above…

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    Heartprints

    Worship While You Wait

      Waiting is the hardest thing I am ever asked to do. If I am waiting for something good, then it is difficult because I am so excited and can hardly wait for the party or the present or the event to happen. If I am waiting for something bad it seems even harder. I don’t want it. Yet, I know it is coming so I just want it to happen already. How good are you at waiting? When it comes to children and waiting…well, if you are a parent, you know how draining that can be on everyone. In my last blog I talked about the importance of waiting…

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    The Son, worthy to redeem the lost

    Title:The Son, worthy to redeem the lost Aim: To turn to the Savior for help, especially in our times of struggle. Scripture: Revelation 5:1–14   The worthiness of the Messiah, Revelation 5:1–5   The major literary segments of Revelation have an introductory throne room scene, which lays the foundation for the verses that follow. For instance, the vision of the exalted Messiah recorded in 1:9-20 is a preface to the messages to the seven churches found in chapters 2 and 3.    Likewise, the throne room scene recorded in chapters 4 and 5 is a prelude to the seal judgments. The first six of these are recorded in chapter 6, followed by…

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    The Father, worthy of unending praise

    Title: The Father, worthy of unending praise Aim: To encourage praising God as our Creator and Sustainer. Scripture: Revelation 4:1–11   The throne of God, Revelation 4:1–6a   The first three chapters of Revelation brought to light the temptations and persecutions that Christians faced in John’s day. Some broke under pressure and compromised their faith, while others refused to waver in their commitment to the Lord.    Throughout the Savior’s messages to the seven churches in Asia Minor, He declared that He would vindicate the upright and one day bring them to a place of eternal rest. This leads us to chapters 4 and 5 of the Apocalypse, which together form a literary…

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    UNEXPECTED

    A week ago Friday our good friends were in a terrible accident – totally unexpected. Their wrecked car is pictured here. Driving home from another town anticipating to get home, unload their car and make plans for the evening they unexpectedly found themselves shockingly being pulled from their vehicle and taken by ambulance to our county hospital. Miraculously, according to the police officer on the scene and subsequent tests in the ER, they escaped death with no broken bones or punctured organs. In spite of the body trauma, abrasions, bruises plus ongoing pain they are alive and improving each day. They are praising God for His supernatural protection and grateful…

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    I Spy

    Remember the childhood game of “I Spy”? Someone chooses an object in the room and tells just the color: “I spy something red.” Then everyone else tries to guess the item by its color only.   The remarkable thing is that as soon as the color red is mentioned, all the red things in the room start grabbing your eye. You may have been in the room many times over multiple years and never noticed a single red object, but now dozens are so obvious. The point is, now you are looking for red where before you weren’t.     We see what we look for   This same principle…

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    Is Working Less the Right Christian Response to Society’s Over-Work?

    “I really try to put away my work phone on the weekends.” “I really want to be fully present with my family this weekend and not focused on work.” Twice in the past week, I’ve heard these phrases from well-meaning Christians. I’ve also said similar things myself lately. Yet the more I think about our approach to work, the more I realize that our thinking might be flawed.   As American believers surrounded by a society focused on over-work, we want to stand out. We don’t want to be slaves to our jobs and servants to our paychecks. We want our faith to be central, reflected in all we do.…

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    Work is an act of worship, not a curse

    Work in any culture is…well, work. Sometimes enjoyable. Often hard and exhausting. Sometimes challenging, more likely because of the people with whom you work rather than the work itself. That applies to any kind of work. When you are working with your God-given skills (and assuming you are doing work that is legal and moral), all work can be an act of worship. Yes, I said ALL WORK, not just if you are on staff of a ministry organization. You might spend two hours a week at church or Bible Study and get the wrong message that the other 166 hours of your week are second class compared to church…

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    Epiphany and the Magi – How Should We Respond?

      What can we learn from the journey of the wise men? Their visit, celebrated on January 6, marks the end of the 12 days of Christmas and is also known in the church calendar as Epiphany – “the appearing”. The story recorded in Matthew 2:1-2, 9-11: “After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea during the reign of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, ‘where is the one who has been born King of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him’… After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they…