Companions of Jesus

Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John and realized that they were uneducated and ordinary men, they were amazed and recognized them as companions of Jesus.   (Acts 4:13) On the Day of Pentecost 3,000 people were baptized.  The crowds became very curious about the disciples speaking in their own languages. They …

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Delighting God’s Heart

No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel: ‘In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.’   (Acts 2:16-17) I will …

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God’s Grace Can Heal Your Heart

Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice...   (Eph. 4:31) Let me call her Eleanor.  She was in her seventies. I visited her every month.  We would read scripture, pray, share communion together, and then she would launch into bitterly complaining about her mother. During …

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We Are All God’s Children

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.  For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups one…   (Eph. 2:13-14) The man was dragging his wife to church.  It was clear she didn’t want to be there.  I …

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Sharing the Love of Jesus

Above all, maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins. (1 Pt. 4:8) He was a difficult man.  Everywhere he went he was disruptive and disrespectful.  People tried to avoid him. One day he burst into my office and said, “Today I’m going to tell you my story.”  I didn’t know …

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God’s Wondrous Love

But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.  (Rom. 5:8) Three weeks after my son John was born we had to rush him to the hospital. He had a virus and his whole system was shutting down. Every night I stayed with him—touching his little …

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The Gifts God has Given Us

'From everyone to whom much is given, much will be required…' (Luke 12:48) I’ll never forget the moment when today’s scripture first spoke to me.  Instead of reading the words on a page, it was like the words were coming off the page to confront me. On that evening, I somehow knew that I was …

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Jesus’ Living Water

Come see a man who told me everything I have ever done!   (Jn. 4:29) The woman had been married five times.  She was currently living with a man without being married.  Did her neighbors talk about her, judge her, and condemn her?  Did she feel marked, shunned, and ostracized? One day she meets a …

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The Sermon on the Mount

Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them.  He said: “Blessed are the poor in spirit..."   (Mt. 5-7) We had just finished a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. We gathered at the bottom of a hill where …

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The Message of the Cross

For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.   (1 Cor. 1:18) His name was Linwood.  He was the part-time janitor at the country church where I once served. As the church grew, Linwood had a hard …

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