Reasons to Guard Your Heart

Reasons to Guard Your Heart

There are valid reasons to guard your heart. You see, throughout Scripture, the heart refers to the very essence of one’s being. The heart includes your wishes, your desires; that on which your life centers. King Solomon said it clearly: “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” (Proverbs 4:23, NIV). If our heart gets damaged, we are damaged. And that’s as far from ideal as possible. So what to do? How can we guard our hearts…

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Only God Gives Real Rest

Only God Gives Real Rest

Work is a blessing because it gives us purpose, a rhythm for our days, and, of course, a means of living. But even if we love our work, we can burn out. Hence proper rest is a necessity. Even God rested, why wouldn’t we? Sometimes rest is out of our reach and that is hard. But sometimes fear keeps us from seeking rest and renewal. As you know, fear is not a good guide. Fear usually leads us astray. Only…

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Holiness Is Christ in You

Holiness Is Christ in You

As I am preparing to teach Christian Ethics starting next week, I have been thinking of holiness a lot. We are called to be holy like our God is holy, right? It is a tall order for human beings but there is no way around it. No one is excused from pursuing perfect holiness. The Bible clearly tells us to be holy over and over. My life experience tells me it’s undoable on my own. I need help. Thankfully, God…

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Why Do We Need God’s Face to Shine on Us?

Why Do We Need God’s Face to Shine on Us?

It’s been exactly two weeks since our family landed in Ethiopia. It’s been a fantastic experience so far. People are friendly and the coffee is strong, so what’s not to like? Well, the rainy season is a bit tiresome but it will pass. Other than that there’s only one thing that has been tough. You see, there are beggars wherever you go, they even knock on car windows when the traffic slows down. The easiest way to deal with this…

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Coming Home to God

Coming Home to God

As I was preparing to move to Ethiopia, I was reflecting on the story of the burning bush. God told Moses to remove his shoes because the ground he was standing on was holy. I get that. But I don’t think God’s only purpose was to teach Moses some religious etiquette. He had some deeper meaning behind the order. What could it be? Let’s use some Biblical imagination. Maybe it was all about coming home to God. Now Moses was…

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God Is Ready to Bless Us

God Is Ready to Bless Us

Summer is here. I love it. And I need it. Or, more accurately, I need time for rest and restoration. How about you? Are you exhausted too? Thankfully, the month of July can be a month for renewal. God is ready to bless us the way we need to be blessed. And those blessings may surprise us in a very good way. May those who delight in my vindication    shout for joy and gladness;may they always say, “The Lord be exalted,    who delights in the well-being…

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God Is Gracious

God Is Gracious

John the Baptist was born as a miracle to elderly parents six months before Jesus. He was not named after his father because an angel visited him and told him he was to be called John instead (Luke 1:13). So there must then be a deep meaning to this name, right? So what does the name John mean? And what does that have to do with us? The English name John is the transliteration of the Greek name Ioannes, and the Greek…

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Faith Gives You Strength, Peace, and Joy

Faith Gives You Strength, Peace, and Joy

When you walk with Jesus, you can’t hide your inner joy even though the world around you might not recognize the source of your strength, peace, and joy. If people are happy with superficial living, and just splashing on the surface, they will never find the treasures of deep grace diving. That’s a shame, don’t you think? Mainly because they can never find the pearl of deep-sea, Jesus. If you keep my commands, you will live in my love, just…

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The Holy Spirit Is a Gift that Keeps Giving

The Holy Spirit Is a Gift that Keeps Giving

The gift of the Holy Spirit is a gift that keeps giving every day of a believer’s life. Jesus knew what he did when he sent the Holy Spirit to us. Without God’s Spirit, we’d be powerless to follow Jesus the way are meant to. So we were gifted the Holy Spirit who transforms, inspires, and empowers us. But the Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force but a divine person of the triune God as the Bible tells us….

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The Spirit Living within You

The Spirit Living within You

Do you underestimate God’s Holy Spirit? I think we all do to some extent. Otherwise, we’d be much more excited about this Comforter, Defender, Energizer, and Loyal Friend of ours who lives within us. Pentecost is a wonderful time to examine our relationship with the Spirit of Holiness. Do we let her close enough to spiritually stretch us and get us out of our comfort zone? If we want to grow in faith, we need to give the Spirit of…

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