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The High Cost Of Anger

Posted on September 20, 2019 · Posted in Anger

“She makes me so mad, I can’t stand it!” “He thinks only of himself, he doesn’t care if he hurts me or not. It’s maddening.” Did you ever say or think words like these? Well, you are not alone. But what do you gain by being mad, by being so angry you lose control? The answer: you gain nothing of value but you lose much that is valuable! Often, being angry brings such harm that the damage is difficult, if not impossible to repair. Of course, you think you have.. read more

A Tale of Two Young Men

Posted on September 18, 2019 · Posted in Culture, Earthly Treasure, Worship

This is a short story of two young men with two radically different views of the same treasure. One thought he could not live without the treasure and one who knew could not live with it. This is the choice is still relevant: should you live for what you can see or for what you can’t see? Moses, as a young man, was offered all the treasures of ancient Egypt. They were the best his world had to offer. Power, possessions, prestige — they were all his. All he had.. read more

The Unexpected Blessing of Criticism

Posted on September 17, 2019 · Posted in Criticism, Sanctification, Social Networking

Proverbs has some profound things to say about receiving criticism.  Solomon warns against living for the praise of others. Learning to wisely receive criticism is a life skill that will serve you and your children well. This skill offers protection from everything to falling prey to sexual temptations or from making poor business decisions. For example, a little boy who craves praise may well grow into a husband who will be angry and disappointed when he is not constantly praised. He can easily be prone to self-pity. This can lead.. read more

Don’t Let Truth Slip Away

Posted on September 12, 2019 · Posted in Parenting, Sanctification

It was time for Israel to grow up!  For forty years Israel had known God’s special protection very much like what you provide for your children before they leave home. Manna was provided for them every day. The lived under the safety of the giant cloud that provided shade during the day and light at night. Their clothing and sandals did not wear out. Once the people crossed the Jordan River things would be different.  The Israelites had experienced the direct hand of God in their lives in ways that.. read more

Ruth, a Model of Faith

Posted on September 11, 2019 · Posted in Faith

The book of Judges tells the story of a dark time in the history of Israel. Yet even in the darkness, God was at work. As He often does, He brought light and hope from the most unexpected place. Naomi accompanied her faithless husband, Elimelech, to Moab; he doubted that God could provide for him in the land of promise. So he turned his back on the provision of God. Years later, Naomi returned to Bethlehem from Moab. Her husband and her two sons had died. All she had to.. read more

9/11 and a Still Heart

Posted on September 10, 2019 · Posted in Culture, Current Events, Wisdom, Worldview

Tomorrow is the anniversary of 9/11. Eighteen years ago, the word terror took on new meaning. It was the formal beginning of a war and a new way of life which shows no signs of ending any time soon. This war is fought by targeting children, shoppers, office workers, airplane passengers, and folks simply wanting to go for a walk or to go out to dinner. The weapons are not only instruments of war, but the ordinary vehicles of daily transportation. The battlefields are not marked by soldiers lining up.. read more

Dorian’s Warning

Posted on September 5, 2019 · Posted in Apologetics, Authority, Current Events, Worldview

The ancient city of Nineveh and Washington D.C. are not dissimilar. Nineveh was powerful, prestigious and evil. Much of the same is true for Washington. Nineveh had no regard for the Living God of Scripture. The same is true for Washington. Nineveh was called to repentance by the Word of God. The same is true for Washington. You might be asking where is the modern-day Jonah calling for the city and the nation to repent or face destruction. The answer is that there is a voice in Washington more potent.. read more

The Devastation of a Wandering Heart

Posted on September 3, 2019 · Posted in Authority, Culture, Ruling Desires, Sanctification, Teenagers

Solomon warned about the destruction of an unguarded, wandering heart in Proverbs 4:20-27. Verse 23 gets most of the attention in this passage: Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. However it is important not to miss the warning that follows to keep your feet and eyes, that is, your heart and your body, from wandering away from what is right: Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be.. read more

Which Question Will Your Teenager Answer?

Posted on September 2, 2019 · Posted in Sanctification, Shaping Influences, Teenagers

An unexpected temptation arises in the life of your teenager.  She was not planning to make a life-altering decision, but the moment arrived nonetheless.  When this moment occurs, your teenager will ask one of two questions: “What do I want to do?” “What does God want me to do?” Joseph was confronted by a passionate and powerful woman demanding to have sex.  He was alone in a pagan land.  Rejecting the advances of this woman would surely bring both pleasant and unpleasant consequences. Yet he had just one question on.. read more

What is Dorian About?

Posted on August 31, 2019 · Posted in Authority, Worldview

As I write this Hurricane Dorian is approximately 350 miles east of West Palm Beach moving on a westerly course. Dorian is a powerful storm with winds of 150 mph.  A storm of this intensity will be catastrophic to any land area that it strikes. After thinking the storm would move into Florida, forecasters believe the Dorian may turn north and move along the east coast for several days. This would threaten several hundred miles coastline with high winds, damaging rains and devastating storm surge.  What are we to think.. read more

Excuses and Stress

Posted on August 30, 2019 · Posted in repentance

  Excuse making is one connection to stress and anxiety. Excuses keep us from trusting God, erode human relationships, and weaken character. The default mode for the excuse maker is to shift blame. This means the ability to trust God by exercising repentance is significantly reduced. Living a life of faith characterized by repentance brings hope and peace. Excuses result in frustration and blame-shifting. This is how the Holy Spirit describes the difference: “He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” (Proverbs.. read more

Created for Friendship

Posted on August 28, 2019 · Posted in Friendship

The DNA of Eternity is Relationship. Eternity exists because God exists. God is about the ultimate relationship of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Thus, eternity is about relationships. In this context, people were designed for relationships, both with God and with each other. Humans did not evolve into relationships, we are made for them. Specifically, we are designed to thrive in the climate of friendship. In the beginning, these friendships were based on total trust and fidelity. Think of the wonder of the whole planet being united.. read more

Fear and Forgiveness

Posted on August 26, 2019 · Posted in Fear of the Lord, Gospel

Are fear and forgiveness opposing concepts? Forgiveness includes acceptance, freedom, love, and understanding. Fear involves dread, terror, and rejection; so how can fear and forgiveness be connected? There is another meaning associated with fear. The American Heritage Dictionary’s third listing for fear is this:  Extreme reverence or awe, as toward a supreme power. The third meaning is one of being overwhelmed by greatness. In the Bible, God is described as so good, so great, and so powerful that fear of Him is an automatic response. Isaiah experiences this when he.. read more

Courage and Prayer

Posted on August 23, 2019 · Posted in Prayer

It is easy to pray for good things. We want our loved ones to be healthy and safe. We desire for our country to turn to God in repentance. It is good to pray that our children will come to know and love Christ more deeply. These are good things. But do we have the courage to pray for something more? We sell God short in our prayers when we only ask for things that seem to good to us.  In the prayer of our Lord, Christ gives us something.. read more

Idol Children

Posted on August 21, 2019 · Posted in Godward Orientation, Gospel, Parenting

We live in the age of the Child. Children are accommodated. They are the center of family life. They are the focus of the educational process. Instead of training children to worship God in all of life, our modern world idolizes them. Education thus becomes a means to serve children rather than to teach them to sacrificially live their lives for God. So parents live for their children instead of God. Children then follow their parent’s example and also live for themselves. When this happens, nothing good is accomplished. Marriages.. read more

Thought Habits of a Healthy Heart

Posted on August 20, 2019 · Posted in Communication, Peace, Peace, Wisdom, Worry

What you think shapes who you are. Worry or peace are the fruit of your thoughts. God makes a big deal about how and what you think. What you think determines your level of anxiety as well as your level of contentment and peace. Your thoughts are both the expression of your heart and the gateway to your heart. Your thoughts direct you to joy or to fear. Your thoughts produce worry or peace, not your circumstances. Your thoughts will lead you to God’s peace. In return, God’s peace will guard.. read more

Faith or Trust

Posted on August 16, 2019 · Posted in Faith, Fear, Wisdom

TRUST is believing and doing what God tells me in the Bible, even when it is hard to do. DOUBT is attempting to find another alternative in the face of clear biblical teaching. FAITH is knowing the difference between trust and doubt and doing what God says over what I want or fear. FEAR is listening to doubt instead of faith. Thus trust is a biblical response to fear. The world is often a scary place. Life is full of things that you and I cannot control. We cannot eliminate.. read more

Healthy Everyday Talk

Posted on August 15, 2019 · Posted in Communication, Wisdom

Verbal communication is part of everyday life. Perhaps nothing else brings such a combination of joy and frustration than the way we talk with each other.  James expresses it the way: With the tongue we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in God’s likeness. Blessing and cursing come out of the same mouth. My brothers and sisters, these things should not be this way. The Holy Spirit has provided tools and directives to keep your talk both healthy and holy. Here are.. read more

Instruction for the Heart

Posted on August 13, 2019 · Posted in Gospel, Parenting

Biblical instruction is designed to impact the lives of your grandchildren. It is not about changing behavior for the moment.  It is about heart change. Proverbs 6:22 defines the goal of biblical parental instruction. It is to change the hearts of your children. Look carefully at these words: When you walk, they will guide you; when you sleep, they will watch over you; when you awake, they will speak to you. This passage in Proverbs mirrors Moses’ command in Deuteronomy 6:4-7.  Truth is to be passed on from one heart.. read more

Self-Protection: A Destructive Response

Posted on August 12, 2019 · Posted in Communication, Parenting, Wisdom

When someone is unkind or attacks you, especially someone close to you, your first response is likely self-protection. If it is, things will go from bad to worse. The best way to protect yourself make sure you are honoring God with your response. For example, your 14-year-old says: “All you care about is your stupid rules! You care about your rules more than you do about me! Thanks a lot for not caring.” You feel hurt, disrespected and defensive. Your child is unable to appreciate the good you are trying.. read more