I read an article recently by Rev. Josh Moody about pain and the church. It’s astonishing how many people … good-hearted Christians … who have been hurt by or who have hurt other church folk. It really makes you realize that the brokenness within each person doesn’t miraculously heal by sitting in a pew. I actually think church hurt is the most traumatic pain a Christian might go through outside of a death of a loved one. And yet, we don’t talk about it. Ever. How many times
But as for me, I will watch expectantly for the Lord; I will wait for the God of my salvation. — Micah 7:7 Today, we wait. Today, the silence is deafening. Today, we stand stranded between dark and Light. And so we wait. But it is within such dark moments, when fear and hiding are our temptations, that we must recall relentless hope and enduring life. Holy Saturday is a solemn day for mourning. We are asked to consider what it would have been like if we were close friends of
The next day when they came out from Bethany, He was hungry. After seeing in the distance a fig tree with leaves, He went to find out if there was anything on it. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. He said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again!” And His disciples heard it. Early in the morning, as they were passing by, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots up. Then Peter remembered and said to Him, “Rabb
And they went to a place called Gethsemane. And he said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” And he took with him Peter and James and John, and began to be greatly distressed and troubled. And he said to them, “My soul is very sorrowful, even to death. Remain here and watch.” And going a little farther, he fell on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from him. And he said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup fr
I cry aloud to God, aloud to God, that he may hear me. In the day of my trouble I seek the Lord; in the night my hand is stretched out without wearying; my soul refuses to be comforted. I think of God, and I moan; I meditate, and my spirit faints. You keep my eyelids from closing; I am so troubled that I cannot speak. —Psalm 77 “I’m fine. It’s fine. Everything is fine.” So many of my clients have recited these words for so long they have forgotten how to acknowledge their rea
And He said to Adam, “Because you listened to your wife’s voice and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘Do not eat from it’: The ground is cursed because of you. You will eat from it by means of painful labor all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. You will eat bread by the sweat of your brow until you return to the ground, since you were taken from it. For you are dust, and you will return
Abram was ninety-nine years old when the Lord appeared to him again and said, “I am God All-Powerful. If you obey me and always do right, I will keep my solemn promise to you and give you more descendants than can be counted.” Abram bowed with his face to the ground, and God said: I promise that you will be the father of many nations. That’s why I now change your name from Abram to Abraham. I will give you a lot of descendants, and in the future they will become great nations
I’m posting a devotion from Louie Giglio today. It is so beautifully stated. Enjoy. Faith thrives in holy discomfort. The greatest moments in life can often result from some of the most uncomfortable decisions being made. In fact, the gospel is rooted in a place of discomfort — Christ’s discomfort. The cross brought pain to Jesus in the same breath it brought freedom to us. We are alive because of Christ’s discomfort. We can fully live because of the rugged cross. Christ endu
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is
And as he was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’” And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have kept from my youth.” And Jesus, looking at him,
Moses went to the mountain of the Lord in the Sinai wilderness and stayed there for 40 days and nights in prayer and fasting (Exodus 24:18). Elijah, after he was fed with bread from heaven, journeyed through the wilderness without any food for 40 days to the mountain of God (1 Kings 19:8). Jesus was without any food in the wilderness for 40 days to prepare himself for the mission that the Father had sent him to accomplish. Forty days shows up a lot in scripture. And often, it
Also He said to them, “Is a lamp brought to be put under a basket or under a bed? Is it not to be set on a lampstand? For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” — Mark 4:21-23 Do you ever look at social media posts and think, “They have best life”? It’s easy to compare our insides to other people’s outsides. Unfortunately, the outside doesn’t always show
Then the Lord appeared to Solomon at night and said to him: “I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for Myself as a temple of sacrifice. If I close the sky so there is no rain, or if I command the grasshopper to consume the land, or if I send pestilence on My people, and My people who are called by My name humble themselves, pray and seek My face, and turn from their evil ways, then I will hear from heaven, forgive their sin, and heal their land. My eyes will now
And they came to Jericho. And as he was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a great crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind beggar, the son of Timaeus, was sitting by the roadside. And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” And they called the blind man, saying
As they went out, they came upon a man of Cyre’ne, Simon by name; this man they compelled to carry his cross. — Matthew 27:32 I have always been drawn to Lent. I can’t really articulate why except that Lent encourages some significant self reflection. Too often, if done right, these reflections can lead to change and sacrifice. Lent is filled with sacrifice. The point, of course, is to reflect on Christ’s sacrifice, to feel just a little bit of the pain he felt, and to draw c
And he said to them, “Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the kingdom of God after it has come with power.” And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became radiant, intensely white, as no one on earth could bleach them. And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, and they were talking with Jesus. An
1 Blessed is the one
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
2 Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord does not count against them
and in whose spirit is no deceit.
3 When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.
4 For day and night
your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
as in the heat of summer.
5 Then I acknowledged my sin to you
and did not cover up my iniquity.
I said, “I will confess
my transgressions to the Lord.”
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from helping me, from the words of my groaning?
O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer;
and by night, but find no rest.
Yet you are holy,
enthroned on the praises of Israel.
In you our ancestors trusted;
they trusted, and you delivered them.
To you they cried, and were saved;
in you they trusted, and were not put to shame. — Psalm 22 Separation sucks! It doesn’t matter if you are an introvert or extrovert, l
To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. …
Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths. …
Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me,
for your goodness’ sake, O Lord! — Psalm 25 I am beginning week two of a new eating program. It’s really tough. No processed sugars. Very few calories. And none of my goto comfort foods.
How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me? Look on me and answer, Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall. But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing the Lord’s prais