When was the last time you were completely overwhelmed? If you have a job outside the home, stay at home, work with people, have any association with family members of any age, and/or are still breathing, my guess is it hasn’t been all that long. Perhaps the peaceful parts of your life are falling like dominoes, or one of the people who hate you ups the drama for good measure. The light turns red. Someone loses something. You lock yourself... Read More
Recently I made the mistake (again) of telling the wrong people about my problems. If I tell you what happened, do you promise to be compassionate? If so, read on.
As I get closer to 40, my body is agreeing with Romans chapter 8 that our bodies are in “bondage to decay” (verse 21). My right Achilles takes a good hour to stop spazzing out every morning. My joints and cartilage creak and crackle with every deep knee bend. My... Read More
If you were to ask my kids to do an impression of me, they would probably pronounce (in a funny voice, because that’s apparently how I talk), “I will laugh in your face!” This is, admittedly, a phrase I do say a lot. It’s usually prefaced by a statement like, “This is the food I put in front of you, and if you don’t eat it and you tell me you’re hungry in an hour, I will laugh in your... Read More
Self-control has been a personal and lifelong battle for me. I grew up an overweight kid who couldn’t control my fork. That lack of control spilled over into other areas of my life, like time management.
I don’t think I’m the only one who struggles with self-control. In fact, I believe we’re living in one of the most difficult times in history to practice self-control. Our environment is designed for our overindulgence.
Take food for example. Our brains crave salty,... Read More
For three weeks I’ve been dealing with some eye issues. Without giving too much detail (because you might stop reading), my eye has been itchy, watery, rashy, red, and practically swollen shut each morning. Honestly, I’ve been miserable and have wanted to hide so no one sees me. Unfortunately, that wasn’t an option because I was scheduled to take my daughter to college for a two-day registration and information session. So there I was, in an auditorium full of people... Read More
Prayer is a good thing, isn’t it? God tells us to call on him in times of trouble, pray often, give thanks, and make our requests known to him. Prayer is talking to the all-powerful God of the universe and trusting that he will listen with genuine concern. It’s a tremendous privilege for those who believe in Jesus to have this direct access to God 24/7.
One of the things that makes prayer difficult, though, is not knowing how our... Read More
There I was in the cell phone store, trying to switch carriers when a man walked in. Because I had the attention of the only employee in the store, the man was forced to wait his turn. About three minutes into his waiting, I was about to suggest that he could go ahead of me, but then he said, “What is up today? I’ve had to wait everywhere I’ve gone.”
Waiting exposes our impatience.
My daughter is leaving home for... Read More
I had lunch yesterday with a guy who is new to our church. He admitted that the “spiritual disciplines” like going to church, reading the Bible at home, etc. are hard to keep consistent.
“I bet you don’t struggle with that, Pastor,” he said (in all seriousness).
My reaction? First, I burst out laughing, an odd sort of confession. Second, I told him about my wife.
My wife is a wonderful example of the title of Eugene Peterson’s book A... Read More
My family toured the Ballard Locks in Seattle on our recent vacation to the West Coast. While there we learned of Carl S. English. He began working at the locks in 1931 after graduating from college with a degree in botany. He was hired by the US Army Corps of Engineers, not to garden but to mow the lawn. Carl and his wife, also a botanist, thought they could improve the grounds of the locks, but they weren’t given any... Read More
On June 2, 2019, Noa Pothoven died. Her death made the news around the world, all because of the circumstances surrounding it.
Noa was molested when she was 11 and then raped by two men when she was 14. Since then, she struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and anorexia. As she struggled with her mental illness, her family looked for effective treatments, often admitting her into hospitals. They tried to get electroconvulsive therapy, but she was denied because of... Read More