It is far too easy to read words on a page as informational, rather than becoming involved in the story to the degree of actually living it. The difference might be similar to reading about a bank robbery, versus personally experiencing the horrors of a mugging. A robbery is usually quickly forgotten by all except…

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Biblically speaking, the desert represents wilderness, hardship, isolation, basic unmet needs, feeling lost, etc. Christ-followers typically use the analogy to describe difficult spiritual, emotional and physical times. None of us likes feeling that we’re in a desert, and a major goal becomes getting out. The longer our desert experience continues, the more likely we are…

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christmas-feast

I’ve often wondered how it felt to be one of the shepherds that witnessed thousands of angels igniting the dark night sky in glorious, celebratory praise to our Savior being born. Those men had no pre-announcement or warning of any kind: the routine stillness of the evening punctuated by insect sounds and the crackle of…

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advent-wreath

The famous song by the above title heralds Christmas as a romantic season of parties, traditions, singing, and general love and good will towards others. Written in 1963, it reflects the era of the mid-1900’s, making it even more romantic in this day of painful relationships, commercialism aimed at profit, the idolizing of Santa Claus,…

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communion

Vacations offer a vital opportunity to escape from the rigors and monotony of our daily lives to do something different. For some, that means challenging physical activity, for others it is exploring faraway places and cultures, and for still others it is rest and relaxation. Invariably, the nature of the change makes us more aware…

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Have you ever had a birthday party where at least half of your invited friends didn’t acknowledge it was your birthday (they came because they thought certain others were coming), and most of the rest brought you a gift or card because they really wanted cake, ice cream and game prizes? It makes me wonder…

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to-do list

As I sit among the lists for my lists to accomplish everything needed before Christmas and the blessed arrival of family, I am realizing that my “Christ alone” goal for 2016 has become “Jesus + everything-I-need-to-get-done.” I am once again exposed, and repenting that something has crept in that is trying to steal Jesus’ place…

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“I have loved you,” says the Lord. “But you ask, ‘How have You loved us?’” (Malachi 1:2) This is the message God is always sending us, and the unfortunate response from us is usually, “Seriously? How??” All the trials and hardships of life bombard our minds: “Where is the love in this?” Yet, 1 John…

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