Precursor

“Then Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground, and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell down before the LORD, worshiping the LORD.”     (2 Chronicles 20:18) Even his name has a wonderful ring to it. Jehoshaphat was the king of Judah, famous for his triumphant victory during a dark time […]

Continue reading

Lived Out

“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.” (I Corinthians 13:4-6)             Jesus was never a […]

Continue reading

Blind Belief

“And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, “Have mercy on us, Son of David.” (Matthew 9:27) They desperately needed his help and, despite their obvious limitations, followed him. Two blind men had the wisdom and the courage to seek after Jesus when it couldn’t have been easy, trapped […]

Continue reading

Beautiful Applause

“She has done a beautiful thing to me.” (Mark 14:6) Their names are not even mentioned, and yet the Lord bestowed the highest praise on three women who demonstrated courage in difficult circumstances. Their ordinary lives are not memorials for us to simply admire, but to emulate, compelling us to love the Lord more deeply […]

Continue reading

Extension

“And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, . . . so that you became an example to all the believers.” (1 Thessalonians 1:6–7) Suppose they could actually speak to us, the characters described throughout the pages of Scripture whom we barely consider as we swiftly scan their stories. What would they say, what lines […]

Continue reading

Pleasing Him

“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1) This week garbage trucks are hauling away immense loads of torn wrapping paper, tangled ribbons, and crushed cardboard boxes that a few days ago served as beautiful decorations for our gifts. Underneath our Christmas trees we stacked an […]

Continue reading

For a Catch

“And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, ‘Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.’” (Luke 5:4) The experienced fishermen gave up. Throughout the night they had careened across the open seas in an attempt to coax some fish aboard. Sore limbs and heavy lids were all […]

Continue reading

Laden

“Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing….so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the […]

Continue reading

Brick by Brick

“O my Strength, I will watch for you, for you, O God, are my fortress. My God in his steadfast love will meet me…” (Psalm 59:9-10) My friend Laurie looked like a fashionable Chico’s model with her cropped silver hair and large, tranquil eyes. The winter had been a hard one, robbing her health, stripping […]

Continue reading

Slip Away

“When Mary reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet….” (John 11:32) Jesus is four days late, and his friends Martha and Mary are not exactly pleased. Knowing their desperate need, he has not bothered to respond. It seems that Jesus is totally indifferent to their predicament and has […]

Continue reading