Sunday, January 30, 2011

Praying without Ceasing

For me, to pray without ceasing means to constantly have a dialogue with God. Like a long list of movie credits scrolling across the silver screen are the words that light up the tablet of my heart. For me, praying constantly is almost like praying obsessively.

But there are two parts to prayer that we sometimes miss. The first is our side of the conversation. The second is God's. For me, to pray without ceasing also means to pray while listening.

"Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus."
-1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Saturday, January 29, 2011

My Own Worst Critic

Her voice sounds smooth but her words cannot be trusted. Her lips only whisper lies in my ear....and her voice is none other than my very own. I am my own worst critic. But negative self-talk held in the light of scripture is just a bunch of lies.

"The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing." -Zephaniah 3:17

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Your Beauty

She seeks beauty where beauty cannot be found. But beauty is not meant for her to define when she already holds beauty in her heart. Yet she works to create beauty with the strength of her own hands.

"Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight." -1 Peter 3:3,4

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Our Stories

Landmarks in our lives become the pillars that shape the structure of our stories. The time you met your best friend, the moment you came to faith in Christ, the day you met your spouse, the birth of your children, the time you landed that dream job. These are moments of great significance. But among moments of significance also exist moments of tragedy. The time you lost your parent, the day the business collapsed, the month you foreclosed on your home, the day your disease was diagnosed. These are the deeper, darker places in our lives that build the sturdy places that contribute to the foundation and the structure of our stories. But together, between moments of glory and moments of tragedy, our stories take shape. And I am confident that when their foundations are built on Christ, they will be shaped well.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
-Romans 8:28

Saturday, January 22, 2011


I pull up my own page on the web much like I pull up a chair in my favorite coffee shop. And as I pour my heart out into a new post, I realize the beauty of blogging. My blog is my very own podium from which I speak. So when I click on the publish button I feel thankful for the freedom to offer a little bit of me to a whole lot of you.

"Has the LORD redeemed you? Then speak out! Tell others he has redeemed you from your enemies." -Psalm 107:2

Friday, January 21, 2011

Are We There Yet?

Life is always a work in progress. If we say we have arrived then we probably have only made it half way. The reality is if life does not keep us on our toes, then it's worth asking if we are even on our feet.

"...being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
-Philippians 1:6

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Heaven holds answers I cannot find while I hold prayers in the palm of my hand. And as I search the velvet canvas called night I wonder how Abraham felt when he stood under the same sky, counting the same stars...waiting on a promise.

As I hold these prayers in my hand, I remember the faith I hold in my heart. And I decide to keep praying no matter how heaven answers.

"By faith Abraham, even though he was past age-and Sarah herself was barren-was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise. And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore." -Hebrews 11:11,12

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Great Physician

My life without Christ would merely be a dull, flat shadow of what it is today. And so I walk in the light.

My life without Christ would only be a sickly, anemic version of what it is today. And so I offer up a toast to good health.

But the irony is that I once walked in shadows and I lived among the sick. It was not until Christ came and put his hand in mine that I knew any different.

"It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice.' For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.'" -Jesus (Matthew 9:12,13)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


We all know the importance of reusing and recycling the products we consume, but how often do we apply the same concept to our relationships? Sometimes we take only what we need from a friend or a spouse before setting that relationship aside until later. And when we need to reuse that relationship, we take what we need without giving anything in return.

How often do we do that with God? Do we try to pull the most we need down from heaven as though God is some great cosmic genie in the sky?

"'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" -Luke 10:27

Monday, January 17, 2011

Telling Time

Some say time is of the essence. Others say time flies. I say time is a precious commodity that should not be wasted. It is also a precious commodity that cannot be controlled or manipulated.

The Bible says, "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens" (Ecclesiastes 3:1).

How are you telling time?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

A Fortress

A fortress defending against darkness can look like an ancient castle with impermeable stone walls and a fortified drawbridge that allow armies to fight off their enemies.

But a fortress defending against darkness can also look like a home covered in prayer with strong boundaries in place to not let anything destructive take root in the lives of those living there.

And a fortress defending against darkness is a heart bound up with truth, cradled by love, and filled with the Holy Spirit so that the enemy cannot gain a foothold.

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests."
-Ephesians 6:10-18

Friday, January 14, 2011


Life does not hand me perfection. Instead she keeps it from me like a greedy sister refusing to give it up...or so I thought.

Until I realized I was making demands she could not fulfill. She would not give me perfection because it is not hers to give.

And when I stopped knocking on her door, new life came knocking on mine.

"Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will." -Romans 12:2

Thursday, January 13, 2011

God Speaks

I travel on a dusty road. Some days the sun shines its warmth on my face. And other days I just know the sun shines even though I cannot see it beyond the clouds.

I travel on a broken road. Some days the voice of God whispers in my ear. And other days I just know God speaks even though I cannot hear him this side of heaven.

"My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me." -Jesus (John 10:27)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Time steals from my plans when I find myself needing more hours in the day and fewer demands on my time. But then I realize that time is not the thief, I am.

I am the thief whose plans are actually stealing from God's best plans for my life.

So ask yourself today:
Is time stealing from you? Or are you stealing from God's best plans?

"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."
-Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Relationship

We cannot inherit a personal relationship with Christ from the traditions of our family. But we can inherit a religion. Like a patchwork quilt from Grandma's attic, we sometimes pick and choose the pieces of the gospel we want to have sewn into the fabric of our lives. But God offers so much more for us than that.

What is it you are settling for today?

Jesus says, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me." -Revelation 3:20

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The First Step

I stand on the banks of reality, unsure of whether or not I feel ready to get my feet wet as they remain comfortable in the warm sand. But as each wave laps on the shore inch by inch, reality seems inevitable. So I take a deep breath and suddenly the truth overcomes my emotions. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me," I whisper.

Is there a step toward reality you need to take today?

Perhaps it's time to get your feet wet.

Saturday, January 8, 2011


Grand achievements get birthed from even grander ambitions. But even the grandest of ambitions can be marred by the greatest illusions. As the new year dawns, are we setting God-sized goals or me-sized goals?