Worshipping and Praising God

Worship the Lord in holy splendor; tremble before him, all the earth.    (Ps. 96:9) I recently led a workshop on Emotional Intelligence at the sheriff’s academy.  Before starting to present the material, I asked the participants what it was like to be police officers these days. They were very forthcoming about all the strains, …

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Formed, Known, Consecrated, and Appointed by God

“Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.’” (Jer. 1:4-5) Most of us grew up hearing these words: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words …

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God’s Purpose for Us

We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.  (Rom. 8:28) Why are we here?  What gives meaning to our life?  What gets us out of bed in the morning?  What helps us to sleep at night?  Simply put: What is our purpose? …

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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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Alive in Christ Jesus

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us…    (Heb. 12:1) I spent a lot of time in a graveyard as a boy.   On Thursday …

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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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God’s Love in Christ Jesus

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers…nor anything else will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.   (Rom. 8:37 passim) I recently attended a funeral.  It was a sad funeral for many reasons, one of which is that the man …

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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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A Dinner Party With Jesus

So, if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.    (Jn. 13:13) At the service when we would remember Jesus’ last night alive on this earth, we followed His command to wash each other’s feet. I would always set-up the washing-party with words like these: “We …

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