Church at its best is magnificent: the Word is taught in its truth and purity, ideas about worship and ministry are freely exchanged, leaders serve in humility, and abundant love meets everyone at the door.
A good many of us have also witnessed church at its worst: when hurt, not love, seems never ending, grudges fester, and walking through the door isn’t a joy but a chore.
At those times the army of evil works overtime to cloud judgment. I... Read More
You can’t microwave a strong faith.
You can microwave a Hungry-Man dinner, reheat a cold cup of coffee, or nuke a trio of breakfast sausage patties (trust me, I do this often). But you can’t microwave a peace-giving, joy-providing, temptation-resisting faith.
I want you to know that so the resources we produce at Time of Grace actually bless you. Like this blog and the others on our app and website. Or the Grace Talks videos that many of you watch... Read More
Stop me if you’ve heard this one: A rabbi, a priest, and a minister walk into a blog . . .
I like to make people laugh; God has gifted me with mediocre wit and a good sense of timing. Most people think I’m decently humorous (aside from one of my sons, who, when he was eight or so, told me, “Mom, you should try to be funnier.” Duly noted, kid . . . someday you’ll get me). Humor has... Read More
I can’t believe I’m going to share this . . .
I grew up in the days when you had to get up from the couch and actually turn the knob on the big console TV to change the channel. I remember hearing about this thing called the Nielsen ratings and how they could tell how many people watched each show.
I was young, so I had no idea they did it by polling. Instead of asking someone who knew... Read More
About a month ago, my father had a costly operation on his finger. The worst part . . . it was completely avoidable.
(Full disclosure: He told me I could tell you this story.)
He had a sliver under his skin. He thought maybe it would just go away on its own. But it didn’t. In fact, the skin became so inflamed that the only solution was surgery.
My father’s procedure really wasn’t that big of a deal. The surgeon... Read More
Dr. James Dobson is known for saying, “There are two kinds of people in the world: those who are suffering and those who will suffer.”
None of us are immune. The floor will drop out from underneath us at some point; not because God isn’t there or doesn’t care, and not because we haven’t been good enough. Christians and non-Christians alike are subject to the consequences of living in a fallen world.
Solomon said: “The race is not to the... Read More
Someone was asking me the other day about my daughter heading off to college, saying it would be hard. That’s when I said, “I will miss her, and I’m excited for her.”
Lately, I’ve been paying more attention to that one little word—and. We live in a but and or society, but so much of our lives are and based.
After all, we are happy about the new house, and we are going to miss our neighbors. The new job... Read More
Back in 2015, a Florida man was arrested for giving his teenage daughters drugs in exchange for chores.
You heard that right. If his girls would finish their chore charts, this dad would give them cocaine and weed as their reward.
That’s messed up. Even if it was the best high on the block, that dad deserved a very small cell with a very large (and angry . . . and gassy) man.
I have to imagine that for both... Read More
Jesus promised, “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). I know that’s quite negative. But it’s a promise of Jesus. I’m not making this up.
Jesus made that promise, and that promise has come true in our lives.
We have trouble when friends leave us.
We have trouble when the money runs out.
We have trouble when the gossip metathesizes like an aggressive tumor.
We have trouble when a loved one dies.
I wish this wasn’t true.... Read More
My son is on two basketball teams. One is his grade school team, and the other is made up of eighth graders from a couple of schools. He’s been playing with both groups for years.
This month those worlds collided at a basketball tournament when, in a couple of games, his grade school team faced teammates from the second league. As one mom and I were talking—which is a pretty common occurrence for me in the bleachers—we commiserated about watching... Read More