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    In All Circumstances

    In our suburb we complain about the constant power outages. They can hit three times in a week and last up to twenty-four hours, plunging the neighborhood into darkness. The inconvenience is hard to bear when we cannot use basic household appliances.

    Our Christian neighbor often asks, “Is this also something to thank God for?” She is referring to 1 Thessalonians 5:18:  “Give thanks in all circumstances, for that is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” We always say, “Yes, of course, we thank God in all things.” But the half-hearted manner in which we say it is…

    Looking at your “bucket list” in a whole new way

    Today on Discover the Word, we welcome special guest and bestselling author Ann Voskamp to the table for a second week of a series of conversations based on Ann’s new book, called “The Broken Way.” Discover a new way of looking at your “bucket list” today on Discover the Word!

    Breath of Life

    On a cold and frosty morning, as my daughter and I walked to school, we enjoyed seeing our breath turn to vapor. We giggled at the various steamy clouds we could each produce. I received the moment as a gift, reveling in being with her and being alive.

    Our breath, which is usually invisible, was seen in the cold air, and it made me think about the Source of our breath and life‑the Lord our Creator. For He who formed Adam out of the dust of the ground, giving him the breath of life, also gives life to us and to…

    Jesus broken on the cross can make us whole again

    Sometimes things can become so familiar that we don’t even notice them anymore. And if we’re not careful that can happen with the symbol of the cross. Today on Discover the Word, special guest Ann Voskamp joins the team at the table to consider how Jesus being broken on the cross can make us whole […]

    Being the hands and feet of Jesus

    The Bible says we are “the hands and feet of Jesus.” But what does being His hands and feet actually look like? Today on Discover the Word, special guest Ann Voskamp joins us as we continue the discussion of how “The Broken Way” is the way of Jesus. Be part of the group,  right here […]

    Thanks-Living

    Wanting to mature in her spiritual life and become more thankful, Sue started what she called a Thanks-Living jar. Each evening she wrote on a small piece of paper one thing she thanked God for and dropped it in the jar. Some days she had many praises; other difficult days she struggled to find one. At the end of the year she emptied her jar and read through all of the notes. She found herself thanking God again for everything He had done. He had given simple things like a beautiful sunset or a cool evening for a walk in…

    Hope Springs Eternal

    A mere half-hour watching the news today can fill one with despair as we witness the effects of greed, selfishness, and depravity. It pains the heart to see the utter devastation of the downtrodden. As we take in such brokenness it can lead us to lower our weary heads and simply trudge through life one day at a time—hope for a better tomorrow diminishing with each passing moment.

    When Christmas Isn’t the Happiest Time of the Year

    With the joyful endings of cheesy, Hallmark movies, comes the subconscious expectation that somehow during Christmas, everyone will get along, then snowflakes will fall at precisely the right time and in a perfect quantity.

    “My Rainbow in the Cloud”

    I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth —Genesis 9:13

    It is the will of God that human beings should get into a right-standing relationship with Him, and His covenants are designed for this purpose. …

    I’m Rich!

    Perhaps you’ve seen the TV ad in which a person answers the door and finds someone who hands over a check for an enormous amount of money. Then the amazed recipient begins shouting, dancing, jumping, and hugging everyone in sight. “I won! I’m rich! I can’t believe it! My problems are solved!” Striking it rich evokes a great emotional response.

    In Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible, we find this remarkable statement: “I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches” (v. 14). What a comparison! Obeying God’s instructions for living can be just as exhilarating…

    Thankful for What?

    On the fourth Thursday in November, US citizens celebrate Thanksgiving Day. History reveals that for the first few years after the English pilgrims made their home in the New World, they were beset by famine and cold—surviving only through the assistance of friendly Native Americans. And so when they were finally able to have a plentiful harvest in 1621, they celebrated Thanksgiving as a way of remembering both the blessings and the hardships they’d endured.

    Game of Thanks

    Every autumn we throw a scrumptious Thanksgiving feast on campus at Cornerstone University. Our students love it! Last year a group of students played a game at their table. They challenged each other to name something they were thankful for—in three seconds or less—without repeating what someone else had said. Anyone who got stymied was out of the game.

    There are all kinds of things that students might gripe about—tests, deadlines, rules, and a host of other college-type complaints. But these students had chosen to be thankful. And my guess is that they all felt a lot better after the game…

    More Than We Deserve

    I spotted an old ledger designed to record a company’s payroll expenses while shopping in a secondhand store. A chart inside the front cover listed pay calculations based on different hourly wages. These calculations were also split into 15-minute increments. If a person earned $2.35 per hour, and he worked for 15 minutes, the chart showed that he would receive exactly 59 cents. If his workday lasted 8 hours, he would receive $18.80. Using this chart, a business owner could determine and record exactly what each employee had earned—not a penny less, not a penny more.

    Learning to Count

    My son is learning to count from 1 to 10. He counts everything from toys to trees. He counts things I tend to overlook, like the wildflowers on his way to school or the toes on my feet.

    My son is also teaching me to count again. Often I become so immersed in things I haven’t finished or things I don’t have that I fail to see all the good things around me. I have forgotten to count the new friends made this year and the answered prayers received, the tears of joy shed and the times of laughter with good…


    September 2019: Christian Living

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