One of my favorite Christian authors is Jen Pollock Michel. In a recent email, she asked a series of questions for reflection of 2022. One of her questions caught me by surprise – “What did I lament?” This is certainly not something I typically allow space for in my thoughts but it made me curious enough to explore.Read more
Why Does God Bless Us?
Dive Deeper: Psalm 67, 1 Thessalonians 5:12-24, Philippians 4:4-9
(A devotion from the Fall of 2020)
This question caused me to stop and ponder during the delivery of a recent Sunday sermon. Honestly, my first response in my head was “Blessed!?!”; this is 2020. As I continued to reflect on the words in Psalm 67, the passage is pointing us to God’s desire in acknowledging our blessings, even when they might seem more bleak or small. The Bible actually calls us to give thanks in ALL circumstances, joy and suffering. That call has certainly been difficult in the year of 2020 as COVID has caused much grief, anxiety and strife in our lives. The moments we looked forward to in our children’s lives have been squashed; experiences we hoped to celebrate with them also extinguished. Trips and family gatherings have been put on hold for an indefinite time. We have quarantined till we are blue in the face. Sadly, some have had to say goodbye to those who have succumbed to COVID or other illnesses. But God in his goodness, gently reminds us in his word to look up and forward to the hope we have in Jesus Christ. He calls us to continue to run the race set before us regardless of the thorn in our side. God calls us to give thanks in ALL things; “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” [1 Thes 5:16]
Hope in The Burden-Bearer
Dive Deeper: Isaiah 53, Mt 11:25-30, 1 Pe 2:23-25
It was a dreary, rainy day as my son and I traversed across a college campus for a tour. The rain was turning to ice on the trees. As the night wore on, ice continued to weigh down the branches of all our trees. What compounded the ice accumulation were the leaves still remaining on the trees. The combination was devastation waiting to happen as the rain and cold pursued. Slowly, the drooping sagging branches could no longer carry the burden of all the weight, causing both small and large branches to snap, thundering to the ground.