Fully Present

“And the angel of the LORD appeared to him and said to him, ‘The LORD is with you, O mighty man of valor.’” (Judges 6:12) The Lord often asks us to endure difficulties, engage in actions that require a storehouse of courage with bushels of his mercy and grace thrown in the mix. We stutter […]

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Loves Me Loves Me Not

“He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief, and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.” (Isaiah 53:3) Lashes from one who should love us lacerate like sharp fangs. Rejection curls its snarling lips, extends its cavernous jaws and clamps […]

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Surprise, Surprise

“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.” (I Peter 4:12) We are often befuddled when trials poke their noses into our lives. We cringe at their unwelcome presence, startled that we are made to experience pain, aggravations, […]

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Glorious Comparison

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” Romans 8:18 Sequestered in the pediatric cardiac ICU of Boston Children’s, Miami Children’s or Shands Hospital for what seemed like an interminable period, we were consistently amazed at the remarkable and […]

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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 […]

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Well Shaped

“In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith – more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire – may be found to result in praise and glory at the revelation of Jesus […]

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The Wilderness Way

“The Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness.” (Mark 1:12) The wilderness appears as wasteland. The weather is scorching, the living conditions exhausting, the nourishment scanty. Weary and haggard, we trudge through, begging desperately for this part of the journey to end quickly. Perhaps the worst part of the trek is the nagging sense […]

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The Other Side

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,     the Father of mercies and God of all comfort….” (2 Corinthians 1:3) After we have pushed through the entanglements of a dense forest, arms scratched from the impact of straggling branches, head bruised from colliding with low-­lying limbs, muscles whining from the strain of […]

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