“Revenge is a dish best served cold.” Those words first appeared in the novel Mathilde by French author Marie Joseph Eugène Sue and were quoted approvingly in movies like The Godfather, Star Trek II, and Kill Bill. The point is that your vengeance will be more effective if you go slow, brooding and planning.
God calls himself “slow” as well. But the slowness is not in his brain processes or his revenge fantasies, but in his temper. He is patient... Read More
When we dare to speak out and reach out to people who seem to be sliding away, we don’t have to put pressure on them to clean themselves up first. Undoubtedly they will be caught in some sins private or public, but that’s not where the change process starts. It doesn’t start in the individual.
It starts with simply telling some good news about God, about who he is and what he has done. “I, even I, am he who... Read More
I don’t do well at coping with rejection. Do you? I can still remember every rebuff I got from girls 40 years ago in high school. I can still remember insults and mockery from grade school playgrounds.
It would be completely reasonable to assume that God stops caring about people who have stopped caring about him. It would be completely reasonable to suppose that God would just dismiss with a divine shrug those who fall away: “You want to experience... Read More
Have you ever tried to get someone else to change a destructive behavior? It seems impossible, doesn’t it? People are resistant to change, and they tend to push back when they feel pushed by someone else. It seems impossible to get someone else to quit smoking, quit living together in adultery, or quit wasting money on lottery tickets and the slots. In the same way, it may seem impossible to reignite someone’s cold, dead faith.
But it can happen. Your... Read More
When people die, their grieving relatives want badly to believe that their loved one is now enjoying life in heaven. Even flagrantly unspiritual rogues and thugs have relatives who construct lovely scenarios of paradise with which to comfort themselves. In their view everybody gets a piece of pie in the sky by and by. They are wrong.
Others want very much to be open minded and nonchauvinistic about spiritual things. In their view all steeples (and minarets) point to heaven.... Read More
David, king of Israel from about 1040-1010 b. c., was a great man, in fact, off the charts in many ways-musician, poet, warrior, builder, and statesman. But he had several equally devastating weaknesses of character-he succumbed to the temptation to assemble a harem of wives and concubines, just like the heathen kings around him, and he appears to have been a terrible father.
So strong in battle, he seemed terribly weak in dealing with his sons. A shining man... Read More
Perhaps you’ve seen coworkers coming back from a weekday worship service with gray smudges on their foreheads. Some Christian churches not only use the term Ash Wednesday to mark the beginning of Lent, but they literally apply ash paste to the worshipers as a reminder of our sin, our mortality, and the terrible price that had to be paid to remove both.
Whether or not you wear ashes on your forehead, it is appropriate at this time to come before... Read More
On December 7, 1941, the naval aviators of the Empire of Japan achieved total surprise in their early morning attack on Pearl Harbor. Absolutely nobody in a U.S. uniform saw it coming. In fact, even when the bombers, torpedo planes, and Zeros with their “rising sun” insignia flew directly overhead, many U.S. personnel thought it was just a training exercise.
We have an enemy brooding in hell who is more dangerous than the Empire of Japan or any earthly threat... Read More
Lifeguards are a familiar summer sight. Dressed in red swimming suits, sitting high on their white platforms, armed with whistle, pith helmet, and megaphone, they keep watch over their charges. "No running!" they bark. "No dunking!" Their eyes restlessly scan the deeper water. Their mission is simple: everybody goes home safe.
Know what's even more important? "Soulguards." Satan is a tricky and deadly enemy, and he uses lies and temptations like undertow from hell, pulling people to their doom.... Read More