Whenever I minister to others who are experiencing depression, one of the first questions I ask is, “When did it begin?” Was there a distressing life event when things shifted? If so, who was involved? What was your perception of God after that event? Sometimes the answer to these questions points the way to the path out of depression. Continue reading
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment…” Romans 5:3-5
Have you ever found yourself going through a trial that just seemed to go ON and ON and you found yourself asking God if it was EVER going to end? I’ve been asking the Lord that question lately, wondering if this is something that I’ll have to deal with the rest of my life. In that place, I found myself squirming and resisting what the Lord was allowing. A dear friend reminded me of the peace that comes when we allow patience to weave its’ way around the trial that God, for some reason, is asking us to endure. Somehow the trial seems less painful when we stop squirming and surrender to God’s plan for our lives. Continue reading
What does the Bible say about it?
First, I want to offer an acknowledgement that that we Christians have at times judged others in a way that Jesus never intended us to. Secondly, I want to make an appeal to our culture to dig a little deeper to find out exactly what the Bible has to say about judging.
I want to apologize on behalf of the Christian community for every time that we have judged others in a critical, condemning, self-righteous, prideful, or disrespectful
way. Jesus himself made it clear that it is possible to judge others in a wrong way, and Continue reading
If done for the wrong reasons, protecting others can turn into friendly fire.
Protecting others is a good thing, right? We could site verses like Psalm 82:3-4, ”
“Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.”
So how could protecting others ever be a bad thing?
Protecting others can go sideways when we forget who The Protector is. There is only One who is able to protect completely, 24/7. God is The Protector, not us. We are only a conduit of His protection. We are able to protect others in a healthy way only when we yoke up with The Protector. When we allow Him to do the heavy lifting. Continue reading
Emotions. For some, this topic might stir up images of times when emotions were painful, embarrassing or seemed more trouble than they were worth. Maybe it reminds some of feelings that have gone under lock and key, with the resolve to “never go there again.” Continue reading
We’ve probably all seen the TV show Fixer-upper, where Chip and Joanna Gaines find a house that needs renovating. If the bones are good, they turn a rundown house in a good neighborhood into a thing of beauty.
Our minds can be like that rundown house. Being part of the body of Christ, we definitely live in a good neighborhood. However, our minds can sometimes be very much in need of change. God is inviting us into the renovation process. Empowered by His Holy Spirit, we become a part of completing the process that He has begun. With His word as our plum-line, we are invited to become co-laborers with God. As we cooperate with Him in the process, our lives become transfigured; the reality of who we’ve become in the spiritual realm becomes evident in the physical. So how does that happen? Continue reading
Simple tips that will help you discern between spiritual and physical tiredness.
Let’s face it…our bodies get tired sometimes. Especially if we’ve been pushing ourselves to accomplish some big goal. But have you ever experienced on-going fatigue that you just couldn’t seem to shake? Have you been wondering if what you were experiencing had more to do with your spiritual self than your physical body? If so, you’re not alone. Continue reading
Our words have meaning. They reflect what we agree with. And agreement is a powerful thing. Yet often taken casually. How different the 1940’s would have looked if no one had agreed with Adolf Hitler. The question is, how do we know what to agree with? What is true and good and just? We all need a plumb-line. Something bigger than ourselves that we can depend on to tell us what is true. And what truth applies in a given situation. Continue reading
“I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh…” Ezekiel 11:19
Does it look to you like your heart has grown callous, insensitive? Unable to feel? If you have, you’re in good company. On more than one occasion, Jesus asked his loyal disciples, “Do you have such hard hearts?” I don’t know about you, but the disciples aren’t the first people I would have imagined when I picture someone with a hardened heart. These men were devoted. They had left everything to follow Jesus, and yet they struggled with some of the same things we might today…a heart that can sometimes be dull and unresponsive. Spiritually blind and deaf. Lacking spiritual perception and understanding. But what causes our hearts to become hardened? Continue reading
“I have this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel…” Revelation 2:20
During the time when Elijah the prophet lived, there was a Sidonian princess named Jezebel. She married Ahab, King of Israel. She hated and murdered God’s people, especially the true prophets of the LORD. She was an idol worshiper and a witch.
While the Jezebel of the Old Testament was an actual woman, her life is a type. It is through the account of her life that we are given a picture of what a person who tolerates the spirit of Jezebel looks like. However, most people who tolerate this spirit have not fully yielded to it the way that the woman Jezebel did. If we’re honest, most of us will probably recognize that we have yielded to some of the markers of this spirit at one time or another. The key is that we don’t stay in that place. Continue reading