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A Nation Wounded

A Nation Wounded

[259 words] It seems our nation is wounded, and respect for the views of others and the Constitution has left us uncertain and in chaos. We do not know what might happen in days to come. We have no regard for mob behavior and despise violence. Uncontained violence has...

Amen to What is Right

Amen to What is Right

[211 words] Of all the goofy, depressing, and astounding things that happened recently (take your pick), my jaw literally dropped at the choice of a veteran congressman and denominational minister to finish his congressional prayer with “amen and a-woman” (not to...

The End of the Matter

The End of the Matter

[290 words] Stephen Covey famously suggested that one of the habits of highly effective people is that they “begin with the end in mind.” I was thinking of that phrase recently while studying the book of Ecclesiastes at the very time that we have started a brand new...

Inconceivable!

Inconceivable!

[284 words] In James 1:14-15, James explained the process that leads to the birth of sin. “Each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin.” It’s interesting to note that temptation isn’t...

A New Car! (Just Kidding)

A New Car! (Just Kidding)

[202 words] A few years ago some friends and I attended the Fort Worth Stock Show. There a local radio station was having a drawing to win a truck. A girl from our group decided to fill out as many entry forms as she could. Turns out it worked!  The next week she...

A Gift for God

A Gift for God

[203 words] This is a gift-giving season. We have been given more gifts from God than we could possibly count. So, what are you giving God this season? In Ephesians 4:30, we are warned not to grieve the Holy Spirit. Given that warning, what can we “give” to God this...

Oh Be Careful What You Sing

Oh Be Careful What You Sing

[241 words] How can we sing… …that we are “Standing on the Promise” when we are rarely even sitting on the premises (Hebrew 10:23-25)? …that we have “Victory in Jesus” when we are AWOL from his army (2 Timothy 2:4)? …“When We All Get To Heaven” when we can’t even get...

Pray for Others Without Ceasing

Pray for Others Without Ceasing

[288 words] Paul’s famously inspired words in 1 Thessalonians 5:17, “pray without ceasing” really come to light when observing all of his two letters to the church in Thessalonica. As documented in Acts 17, Paul, Silas, and Timothy establish the Lord’s church there...

Joseph’s Integrity Needed by All

Joseph’s Integrity Needed by All

[214 words] Marriage and fatherhood are not just quaint human traditions. They didn't evolve out of ancient needs or convenience. The humanists and feminists all assume this and that is where they are very wrong. Fathers are important. Not just to physically produce...

An Important Question

An Important Question

[295 words] The question asked in Psalm 116:12, “What shall I render to the Lord for all His benefits toward me?”, could only come from the lips of humans. Humans alone are endowed with the ability to be concerned about gratitude and its obligations.  Two...

Reminders

Reminders

[210 words] We all need reminders. If not for our digital calendars and alarms, our post-it notes, and our spouses, most of us would be lost and would fail to meet most deadlines. The Lord let Peter know that he had a responsibility to remind his fellow Christians...

The Empty Swing

The Empty Swing

[268 words] Last Sunday afternoon, I walked for about forty minutes at home. It was a nice, brisk fall after-noon. I finished up walking as the darkness was moving in on our part of the world. As the wind blew, I could see out of the corner of my eye a swing in a tree...

Thankful For What We Don’t Have

Thankful For What We Don’t Have

[214 words] “Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits;” (Psalms 103:2). This time of year we think about ‘counting our many blessings’. It's easy to look at all of our stuff all our friends and family, our homes, our jobs and understand the need to...

The Thanksgiving Attitude

The Thanksgiving Attitude

[222 words] In 1623, Governor William Bradford issued the first proclamation of American Thanksgiving. In that decree, he directed the Pilgrim Fathers to gather and “render thanksgiving to ye Almighty God for all His blessings.” Since that time, there have been...

Blessings of Worship

Blessings of Worship

[204 words] First and Second Chronicles offers us several great reminders about what a wonderful blessing worship should be to our lives. Especially right now when our routines have been disrupted, we need to make sure we are participating with heart, soul, mind, and...

We Must Learn Our Lesson

We Must Learn Our Lesson

[218 words] What was God's response to the sins of Israel and what will His response be to our sins? God would beat His fist in anger at the violent crimes of Israel. “Behold, therefore, I beat My fists at the dishonest profit which you have made, and at the bloodshed...

Forgiving Others

Forgiving Others

[224 words] Jesus told a parable about a king who forgave a servant who owed a very large sum of money. However, this same servant refused to forgive another a very small amount. In the story, when the king heard about the actions of this unmerciful servant, he was...

When Small Fires Become Big Fires

When Small Fires Become Big Fires

[264 words] A few weeks ago, I was burning the wood from two trees that had to be cut down. I’d piled the wood as far from any other tree as possible, but the fire was so hot that a branch about 30 feet above and off to the side of the fire started to smoke in several...

When Losers Are Finders

When Losers Are Finders

[253 words] Most of us have had the delight of finding something of value—a dollar bill on the sidewalk, a piece of jewelry in the grass, a tool by the wayside. I recall hearing this saying in my boyhood: “Finders keepers, losers weepers.” In the spiritual realm,...

Coexistence or Confrontation?

Coexistence or Confrontation?

[236 words] How do you approach the sinful world in which we live? Are we content to coexist with sinful people or do we creatively confront sinners? If we are content to coexist nothing changes. But if we creatively confront sinners they may repent; they may get...

That’s Some Real Long Distance

That’s Some Real Long Distance

[273 words] In 2006 the Federal government did something rather unusual, they repealed a tax. This was a three percent federal charge on long-distance phone calls. It was about time. The original purpose of the tax was to help fund American efforts in the...

Upside Down

Upside Down

[293 words] What impact should you as a Christian have on society? Should you be passive or active in the lives of the people around you? How do we help people become better? How can we help the sinner become a saint? We are sometimes reluctant to become involved in...

Awaiting Justice

Awaiting Justice

[211 words] Current events cause us to consider the idea of justice, and why some people seem to “get away” with hurting other people. This is not a new question, of course. David wrote about such things many times in the scriptures.  In Psalm 10, David voices the...

Henry Ford and Idle Words

Henry Ford and Idle Words

[271 words] Ever say something you wish you hadn’t? Henry Ford did. In a 1916 interview with the Chicago Tribune, the American motor vehicle pioneer said, “What do we care about what they did 500 or 1,000 years ago? I don't know whether Napoleon did or did not try to...

Age and Emotion

Age and Emotion

[225 words] Growing older brings emotions closer to the surface, for some of us anyway. Using a sentimental illustration in a sermon or singing a song that touches our hearts becomes difficult. While I do not fear death, I dread the prolonged pain or loss of mental...

Moving Past It

Moving Past It

[229 words] Do you have one experience in life that you can’t shake from your memory? Try as you might to put it behind you, it won’t go! Perhaps you have more than one. In the long ago, there was a man name Esau who thought so little of his “birthright” that for an...

Getting to Know Jesus Through Preparation

Getting to Know Jesus Through Preparation

[280 words] A few months ago, I began working with a cousin of mine in the area of genealogy. I have always enjoyed studying history, but I have never spent a lot of time documenting my family’s history. My cousin’s grandfather was a brother to my grandfather. As we...

Read It, Believe It!

Read It, Believe It!

[286 words] How often do you read the Bible? A survey by the American Bible Association found that 57 percent of the people read their Bible four times or less per year. Another survey found that only 19 percent of the people read the Bible on a daily basis. The ABA...

Stewards of God

Stewards of God

[209 words] According to Webster’s dictionary a steward is “one who manages another’s property, finances, or other affairs.” Many parables of Jesus relate to stewardship (Luke 12:42-46; 16:1-13; 19:12-27; etc.). The idea of stewardship carries with it the idea of...

Does God Hear Prayers?

Does God Hear Prayers?

[253 words] Most of us have prayed and asked God for help with some burden or problem, but it seemed there was no answer. Have you ever wondered if God really hears your prayers? Does an unanswered prayer mean that God doesn’t listen to us? God's word assures us that...

Roots in the Bible (and in Our Lives)

Roots in the Bible (and in Our Lives)

[213 words] Roots are a very important part of plants - they bring up nutrients from the soil and help to support the plant. In the Bible we can see human lives compared to roots (both bad and good). Some are… ...Dried up roots because of wickedness and evil deeds...

We Preach Christ

We Preach Christ

[256 words] Many years ago, at a congregation I previously served, some visitors attended our worship services. They had been brought by a couple of new Christians. They wanted to share their faith with their friends. We had an amazing service. The songs were joyous...

Be a Light

Be a Light

[260 words] “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it  under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine  before others, so that...

Hold The Mayo

Hold The Mayo

[245 words] “Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him” (Psalm 34:8). Have you ever noticed the clever slogans at fast food chains? The concept each restaurant seeks to portray is that the customer is in complete and total...

The Christian’s Advantage

The Christian’s Advantage

[257 words] There is not a person in the world who can live totally above sin. Paul told us in Romans 3:23 that “All have sinned” and in John 1:8 says, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” Everyone makes mistakes and fails...

Good Medicine

Good Medicine

[296 words] Do you want good medicine during this time when we are hearing negative things – especially about the coronavirus and its spread throughout the U.S.? Right now, many people are having trouble – not with the disease – but with the effect it is having on our...

One Thing

One Thing

[219 words] There are many voices competing for our attention. There are many destinations pleading for our arrival. There are many products and companies begging for our money. Yet only one voice matters. Only one destination is of any consequence. Only one being can...

When God Leads A Nation, Mercy Triumphs

When God Leads A Nation, Mercy Triumphs

[229 words] “May the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you rule the peoples with equity and guide the nations of the earth” (Psalms 67:4). Today, many people throughout the world are seeking justice. Many more cry out for mercy. In the United States, right now,...

Choose Your Friends Wisely

Choose Your Friends Wisely

[248 words] Life is filled with choices. We chose what we do for a living, what we eat, where we live, etc. One of the most challenging is the choice of friends. Solomon the wise prophet told us: “The righteous choose their friends carefully, but the way of the wicked...

Christ Over Conspiracy

Christ Over Conspiracy

[267 words] When tragedies and disasters occur—like our present pandemic—conspiracies abound. The temptation to believe them is strong because they make sense of an otherwise senseless event. They grant us the power to place blame at the feet of someone, rather than...

David’s Prayer in the Cave

David’s Prayer in the Cave

[264 words] It was in one of the lowest points in his life that David finds himself hiding in a cave praying to God. He says, “With my voice I cry out to the Lord; with my voice I plead for mercy to the Lord” (Psa. 142:1). David describes the circumstances that have...

The Ocean Waves of Life!

The Ocean Waves of Life!

[273 words] Have you ever stood in the ocean when the waves are rolling in? If you are not prepared and standing with your feet firmly set, the waves can easily knock you down. The Bible uses this idea of “standing firm” and “holding fast” when describing how we need...

Words Matter

Words Matter

[299 words] We have so many ways in which we use our words. We have the spoken word. We have the written word. We have the texted word. We have the emailed word. We have the posted word. Thank-fully, we have the Inspired Word! James 1:19-20 is clear when it comes to...

The Christian’s Advantage

The Christian’s Advantage

[257 words] There is not a person in the world who can live totally above sin. Paul told us in Romans 3:23 that “All have sinned” and in John 1:8 says, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” Everyone makes mistakes and fails...

‘Do Not Be Afraid, Little Flock’

‘Do Not Be Afraid, Little Flock’

[209 words] In Luke 12, we read how Jesus told his followers "do not worry." He said, don't worry about getting the necessities of life or even how long you will live. He then pointed to world of unbelievers and said: "they worry about these things." But you should...

Does God Hear Prayers?

Keep Praying

[273 words] If there is one aspect that Jesus seems to emphasize in his teaching about prayer, it is that it is not a “one-and-done” thing (Luke 18:1-8, Luke 11:5-13). Prayer takes constancy to work. If I ask and don’t receive, it shouldn’t be taken as a reason to not...