Have you ever had a prayer that seemed to go unanswered and you wondered, “Does God even listen to us?” Sisters, Martha and Mary prayed fervently for Jesus to heal their sick brother and yet he ended up dying. I’m sure they had all kinds of questions for Jesus’ lack of response to the cries of their hearts.
But sometimes God’s answers to our prayers achieve greater, more eternal purposes in order to bring others to faith
Our triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is so generous in the way God provides for what we need. I have found that even when our resources are less than hoped, it's amazing how we always have more than what we need so that we can share with those who have even less. As we share, we live into the God given generosity that has been imprinted on every human heart. So, in this season of gratitude, may we truly sing “Praise God from whom all bless
In this season of gratitude, I’d like to say thank you to our all our uniformed men and women and their families who make such huge sacrifices on our behalf. As Americans, without these special people, we would not enjoy the many freedoms that we have. Their selflessness of always putting others first models the example of Jesus Christ and blesses us more than we could possibly put in words. So please take a moment this week to verbally express your grateful
Zacchaeus was not only physically short, but also short in character. As chief tax collector he was known for taking more than his share from his fellow people and he was despised by all. So it’s no surprise that he hid in a tree so he could see Jesus when came to town. But Jesus not only calls him out of hiding, he also calls out the God given image of generosity that had been imprinted upon Zacchaeus' soul. Like a stone thrown int
The Prophet Daniel describes the Babylonian government as full of division, posturing, jealousy, covetousness, corruption, deceitfulness, and distrust…in other words much like how I imagine our nation’s government operates today. But Jesus, through his Sermon on the Mount, paints a much different picture of what is possible. One of hope, of unity, of peace, and of love. If we would just humble ourselves, confess our sinfulness to God, and turn toward H
Jesus often told stories where he likened weddings to the Kingdom of Heaven breaking into our midst. Indeed these communal festivities are wonderful opportunities to cultivate a greater heart of gratitude. The truth is that the more we accept these invitations to join in the party, the more grateful we become. So let us be more grateful and festive!
There is a dangerous movement in American Christianity that says “I believe in Jesus, but I just don’t believe I need to be part of the local Church.” The Apostle Paul also addressed this spiritual apathy in the Church in Ephesus. Through his Letter to the Ephesians, Paul reminds us that we are better together than we are on our own. We are stronger together than we are on our own. We are more blessed together than we are on our own. We have a grea
I’m sure everyone could attest that there are days when we don’t feel very grateful. The truth is that we are hard pressed on all sides, busy beyond exhaustion, and confronted by people who wish to do us harm. And King Jehosaphat in the Old Testament encourages us that it is during those days when we need to intentionally practice our gratitude. Though we may need to allow ourselves to feel all our emotions, at some point we also must put them aside,
Last week we talked about the emotion of gratitude and how hard it is to be grateful when we are grieving. But if gratitude is an emotion, it is also an ethic or something we can do. Today we suggest a few gratitude practices that if we do, over a period of time, will become habits that could change the way we live and view the world around us. My hope is that they will spark ideas that we can then import into our own homes so that we can express gratitude in our
I will confess that it’s been a hard season of ministry. There have been several people that I loved who have died recently. Some were expected, but some unexpected. Truth be told, as I deal with my grief, I find that I am a bit grumpy that my days with these folks were cut far too short. And when a heart is grieving or grumpy, it can be a challenge if not impossible to feel grateful. And yet Psalm 34 exhorts us to Praise the Lord at all times. Bu