During this festive season, one of the buzzwords you'll see on ornaments, t-shirts, and farmhouse chic boards is "joy." We are surrounded and bombarded with this concept of "joy," particularly as we gear up to celebrate Christmas, but do we as Christians understand joy? Do we grasp what it means to "rejoice always"? When the… Continue reading Joy Inexpressible: December 2019 Scripture Writing Plan
"I needed to be happy, so I ____________________." How many different ways do people fill in this blank? "...left my spouse." "...quit my job." "...stopped going to church." "...aborted my child." "...drank my sorrows away." "...took some "me" time" How would you fill in the blank? Or, would you even say this at all? There… Continue reading How important is my happiness?
Whether you are reveling in the joys of this season, or (like me) struggle with the limited sunlight and pressures accompanying Christmas, it is my sincere hope that this focus on a joyful heart will uplift you this month. We have the hope of eternal life through Christ Jesus, and that knowledge should sustain us through whatever griefs or delights we endure in this life.
Suffering is frequently linked with the word "why." Why do we suffer? Why does God allow suffering? Why me? Suffering triggers an immediate desire to understand why. When sin entered the world suffering came along for the ride. We have seasons of peace, seasons of prosperity, and seasons of pain. Even in the good seasons,… Continue reading Patience, Even When Suffering Doesn’t Make Sense
Over the weekend as I was whirring around like a tornado cleaning the house, the kids asked to listen to Christmas music. I suppose it really is that time of the year...
I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand. The sun shall… Continue reading Help! I need somebody, not just anybody… (Day 25 of the #encourage marathon)
Have you ever cried out to God, "Why, Lord? Why is this happening to me?" The question is a common one, and I'd be a liar if I said that I myself had never asked it. There is nothing wrong with asking God, "why," but it's a bit arrogant to think that we should be exempted from suffering. Yes, we are children of God, but that does not mean that we should skate through life while "lesser mortals" do all the suffering.
Someone out there is running sluggishly, ready to give up. It might even be you.
Why do you choose to follow Jesus? Do you pursue Jesus so that you will have wealth? Do you seek to be free from loneliness by joining yourself to a church? Do you seek to be honored and respected? I read things all the time from people who say that God intends for us to be wealthy and happy and a lot of other nonsense. God does not want us to possess mere happiness---he wants us to have joy. The joy of the Lord transcends circumstance and is part of an abundant life. True riches are found in Christ and cannot be altered by the government, stock markets, or thieves. Why do you seek Jesus??