The Sunday school lesson of Samson taught to children presents him as a Herculean character, the strongest man in the world.  His brute strength enabled him to tear a lion apart with his bare hands, to shred new ropes binding him by simply flexing his muscles, and to kill 1000 men with a donkey’s jawbone…

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street signs with question mark

The search for truth is an age-old quest of man.  We want truth that makes sense, based on evidence, until the evidence changes and we have to look for other criteria.  Perhaps truth should be based on what is right, or maybe on belief systems.  But that truth becomes shifting sands, as there are almost…

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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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name badges

Most expectant parents dedicate much thought (if not prayer) to naming their baby. For good or bad, that name becomes an identity element, which means that changing it is a big deal. All of us probably know someone who has changed their name because they felt it didn’t properly reflect who they are. But in…

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There was a playful story we used to recite as children that required the listeners to respond, “Oh, that’s bad.” That comment would be immediately refuted as the story continued in a positive direction, evoking the comment, “Oh, that’s good,” to which the speaker would respond, “No, that’s bad,” as the story took a downward…

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stranger

Jesus used the analogy of a shepherd with his sheep to describe His relationship as the Son of God to the people He came to save. While thousands of sermons and commentaries speak to the truth and appropriateness of His illustration, there is a profound caveat we often miss. The loving, caring and sacrificial nature…

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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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welcome mat

Today’s headlines are extraordinarily alarming in highlighting incident after incident where division, discord, and hatred have prevailed. Unfortunately, the shedding of innocent blood, prejudices against races/peoples, and the greedy pursuit of wealth, fame and power, are age-old human issues that seem to be escalating in our present time. Many have commented that human decency and…

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