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    Advent of the Redeemer – Part 4

    For Unto us is Born this Day in the City of David But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, Too little to be among the clans of Judah, From you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel. His goings forth are from long ago, From the days of eternity. Micah 5:2 The Christmas frenzy has come and gone and our Advent reflection has drawn to a close. This past Sunday across the world, Christians of all denominations remembered Mary and Joseph’s journey to the tiny city of Bethlehem. It was in that village, within walking distance of the City of Peace, that our Prince of Peace was…

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    Advent of the Redeemer – Part 3

    “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me?” Maybe these words evoke images of Easter week more than Christmas, Good Friday more than the Advent season. We are now in our third week of looking at the Advent through the eyes of the Old Testament saints. In some denominations this past Sunday would have been celebrated as Gaudette Sunday, a celebration of joy. What does Christ’s soul-wrenching cry from the cross have to do with a Sunday that focuses on joy? Hebrews 12:2 says, “…for the joy set before Him [Jesus] endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of…

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    Bring Discontent to God

    I read an interesting blog post this week that challenged my perception of complaining. The author, Emily Saxe, delved into the difference between complaining and lamenting. She presented a case, drawing from the example of David who faithfully lamented before God in the Psalms. She contrasted how complaining (woe is me, life isn’t fair) is spiritually detrimental while lamenting (only God can help and I will seek Him) is righteous. (Read Emily Saxe’s post, Ordinary ways to Pursue and Honor God: Complaining, here. Crying out to God David, the apple of God's eye, lamented when life got rocky. His words are dramatic and full of emotion. You can hear the…

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    Grace with Humility

    Do you ever wonder if you’ve messed up so bad that God won’t want to use you anymore? If anyone has ever stood firmly in that place of uncertainty, I think it was David and Bathsheba. Yet tucked away into Jesus’ genealogy is a small detail of significant impact the notorious couple left to encourage those who feel irreparably broken. But before I get to that, first let’s talk about a man who did mess up so bad that God wrote him off. Not only that. This guy screwed up so bad, God wrote off his offspring as well. King Jehoiachin. David and Bathsheba’s descendant through King Solomon. Jeremiah 22:28-30 paints…