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    Look to Jesus

    Our baby is learning how to drive, which is crazy because it feels like yesterday that she was in diapers. Every time I explain a road rule, I remember what it felt like to learn myself—because that feels like yesterday too. Some things stand out in my memory, like my mom riding shot-gun, pointing my attention into the distance and telling me to stop focusing on the car in front of me. As I repeated that lesson and heard my mom’s voice come out of my mouth, I couldn’t help but think of Peter’s focusing problem. Immediately He [Jesus] made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of…

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    Growing Faith & Killing Fear (guest post)

    My dear friend and fellow suspense writer, Jerusha Agen asked me to guest post on her Fear Warrior Blog. "Fear is natural to our human nature. From the moment we are born, we enter a world damaged by sin. A world that runs on fear." Read Now Fear Warrior Blog Click Here

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    How can Love & Hate Co-Exist

    I have the best grandmother in the entire world. If I were ever tempted to doubt God’s love for me, all I would need to do is look at the blessing he gave me in her. She’s loving and dependable and tells it how she sees it. Most of all, she’s wise. When I was a teenager, she once told me something that was impossible for me to understand at the time. She said, “Love is staying married to someone even when you hate them. The good times come and go and sometimes you’ll hate that man so much you’ll wish he’d go too, but love is sticking together even…

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    Dear Discouraged

    The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:17-18 Dear Discouraged, I heard your discouragement and in our moment of shared brokenness we had nothing to offer each other. Instead, we discovered something—discouragement grows in isolation. But God has something for else for us. Psalm 34:17-18 says, “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them.” This phrase is plural, not singular. “Cry out” is translated from tsa`aq. It means to shriek; to proclaim (an assembly). It can also be translated as a Hebrew idiom that…

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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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    Living in God’s Presence Part 2

    I have a confession—and I do appreciate the ridiculous paradox of what I’m about to say—but I didn’t have high expectations for my blog post Living in God’s Presence. Up to the point that I hit send on the email to my pastor, and later when I pressed publish on my website, I wondered—in contrast to the message of the entire post—if maybe I was confusing obsessive tendencies for Godly zeal. Then I started reading feedback and realized something—this questioning… this uncertainty… hit home with other Christians. This quiet doubt that was snaking its way into my head and heart was also at work worming its way into the heads…

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    Hiding God’s Word in my Heart

    The New Year is peeking around the corner so I’ve decided to do something new—writing out God’s word. After reading that Erica Wiggenhorn writes a Psalm by hand each day (check out her post here), I remembered God’s command in Deuteronomy 17:18. “When he takes the throne of his kingdom, he is to write for himself on a scroll a copy of this law, taken from that of the Levitical priests.” Hiding God's Word in my Hearts Writing God’s law by hand was a requirement to be king of Israel. There must be something in it. Something that pushes the words past the eyes and down to the heart. I…

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    Sunshine Blogger Award

    I’ve had the honor of being nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award—not once but twice in the last couple months. My first nomination for this peer-recognition award came from Gia at giaknows.com. Gia is a passionate Christian and raw vegan minimalist who invites others to walk with her towards better health through the powerhouse of info she provides on her blog. Check it out and follow her social media profiles: Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and YouTube. My second nomination came from a fellow faith blogger, Stephen De La Vega. Stephen faithfully and fearlessly blogs about his pursuit of God. He shines a love of Biblical understanding and invites us to…

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    Growth through Hardship

    Our gift from God. Have you ever faced an unanswered prayer? Challenging relationships? Difficult circumstances? Trick question. Of course the answer is yes if you’ve lived long in this world. I’ve been thinking a lot about learning lessons in life. Spiritual lessons. Slowly, I’m realizing that no matter how desperate I am for answered prayer—as I interpret “answered”—getting what I want may not be the best thing for my growth. Why? Because when I get what I want, I don’t grow. Despite the present-day gospel presentation, Jesus never promised an easy life post-personal redemption. In fact what he promised was the exact opposite. In John 16:33, Jesus told us, “In…