We all expect to get sick now and then, and that doesn’t bother us particularly. But when serious illness strikes, it can turn our lives upside down. Sickness shatters our illusion of control. Major sickness can destroy your savings, your career, your future.
God is there for us when we need him. When we put our trust in him, we give him the chance to make the illness work for us. Once when Jesus’ friend Lazarus was seriously ill, everybody... Read More
People are intensely proud of their national flags. That simple piece of colored cloth evokes powerful feelings. Brits love their Union Jack, Canadians love their maple leaf, and Americans love their star-spangled banner. Flags give people a sense of history, of belonging, of place, of identity.
The message of salvation won for us by Jesus Christ is central to Christianity, and the symbol of the cross elegantly sums up his blood-purchase on our behalf. The most important message we have,... Read More
Every day you are reminded that there are some very wealthy people on this earth. You see their vehicles whiz by. You see the huge buildings they own. You don’t seem to have much by comparison. Every day people say and do things that make you feel worthless. Every day somebody makes you feel like a loser. Perhaps you call yourself a loser.
God happens to think that you are precious. Do you want to know just how valuable you... Read More
Why do you suppose so many people run away from God and try their best to avoid going to church? My guess is that a lot of people are afraid of getting hustled. They assume that the church just wants to take from them. They assume that Christianity is basically a load of rules that will just add to their life's burdens.
Would it surprise you to know that God's basic message to you is what he wants to give... Read More
We all sing the blues sometimes. What's in your blues song this week? Dumped? Betrayed? Broke? Hung over? Robbed? Hopeless?
It's hard to lift yourself out of the blues. Satan wants to keep you down, whispering "Loser!" in your ears. That's why God sends us friends whose words of praise or comfort can help us back on our feet.
The ultimate comforting friend is God the Holy Spirit. When I am plagued by doubts, and especially the worst of all... Read More
"What do I do now?" Have you ever groaned that question? What could be worse than confusion? Sometimes our choices in life all seem bad or they all seem dreadfully hard or there are so many different choices. Do you stick with a difficult boyfriend? Do you rat out a friend who is doing something illegal?
Do you help a child do math problems or make her figure them out on her own? Do you protect a coworker or tell... Read More
Are you a Star Wars fan? Remember how Darth Vader fought off all of Luke Skywalker's attempts to bring him back to the good side? Vader thought that he was too far gone. He had resigned himself to service to the evil emperor.
Perhaps you have felt that your sins are too great for God ever to love and accept you. Perhaps your years of guilt and shame keep you from God's house and enjoying the fellowship of God's other... Read More
The blues is a musical gift to Americans and the world. The songs come from the African-American experience, birthed from the pain of slavery, hopeless toil, and separation. The blues' ancestors were work songs, call-and-response verses to make the day go faster. Blues songs in church are called spirituals.
Nobody knows the trouble I've seen;
Nobody knows my sorrow.
Slavery is gone from the American scene, but the blues are not. Everybody hurts. Everybody sins, and everybody is the victim... Read More
Lord Jesus, you took on my humanity and were born just like me. You honored the human race by living among us and as one of us. You offered your body on the cross, were buried like us, and rose again not only in spirit but in body too.
When you ascended into heaven, you brought your body with you! You took our humanity to the very throne room of heaven. You are now bonded to us into eternity. We... Read More
I don’t know why, Lord, but you have chosen to let me live with chronic pain. I have tried everything; nothing works. Is this my destiny for the rest of my life?
I’ve talked to you about it; I’ve pleaded and prayed, but my pain remains. I remember longingly the pain-free days of my youth—they seem gone forever. I pray for sleep, for at least I gain a temporary respite. You must have a plan, Lord. I will admit that... Read More