“They say I’m having a heart attack,” came my husband’s breathless voice on the other end of the phone. It was mid-May, I was sitting in my morning quiet time chair, Bible spread open on my lap when the phone rang.
There is a scene in Luke’s gospel where Peter denies Jesus three times. Immediately following his denials, Peter sees Jesus turn and “looked straight at him” (Luke 22:61). I have often seen this scene through the lens of rebuke. I have pictured Jesus giving Peter a stare of disappointment. Perhaps the faint whisper of “Oh Behave!” can be heard coming from Christ’s lips. When we view Jesus’ gaze this way, it becomes easy to assume that this is how Jesus looks at us.
Why I Write what I Write
The Psalmists spoke of walking through valleys of darkness, ancient writers talked about the Dark night of the Soul; when did we adopt such an unbiblical assumption that our faith is never affected by the highs and lows of our existence. The Christian life that Jesus calls us to is never disconnected from our everyday lives.
The Blessing of Goodbye: A guest post by Reverend Theo Robinson
Saying goodbye is never easy. And some goodbyes are harder than others. But no matter how painful, saying goodbye is important. A lack of a goodbye can feel like unfinished business while the opportunity to say goodbye can be extremely healing
The Blessing of a boring Psalm.
Psalm 136 isn’t one of the popular psalms. In fact, if there was ever an award for the most boring of psalms, I’m confident it would go to Psalm 136. The psalm comes across as pedantic, dry, and frankly, a bit uninspired. At first glance, it offers nothing more than a broad retelling of Israel’s history. And if that weren’t enough, every other line in the psalm is the same. That’s right, the psalm repeats the same statement 26 times. It is this repeated verse, however, which is significant.
Jeff Probst is not God
A friend once asked me where God was during his turmoil. He was going through a large upheaval in his life; he couldn’t see anything beyond the obstacles he faced. He felt physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted. “Is God even near me in all of this?” he grieved. “No.” I responded.
Searching Rubble for Gold: A guest-post by Sue Fulmore
The legalism, judgementalism, patriarchal systems, and poor Scriptural interpretations all need to be tossed out. As we do so, we also need to guard against tossing out the proverbial baby with them. I would never presume to tell anyone how to go about this process of deconstruction, but I also don’t want us to forget all that is good and worthy of holding onto.
Death and Life
We sometimes forget the extremity of Jesus’ language. For Jesus, the cross is hard and cruel. It was not an easy thing to carry. For Jesus, the cross was the place of his rejection and death. It is to this place that Jesus bids us to follow. Is it any wonder, then, that the cross is hard reality in our lives? We feel it viscerally pressing against us. The cross upsets our lives. What is more, taking up our cross means we may need to walk with it for a while. This can be involve walking a difficult and sometimes lonely path. Yet despite all of this, taking up our cross is an act of radical hope.
Ask for that goat.
What are some of the good things of God that you would like to experience? What do you hope for? Do you seek those loving gifts from our heavenly Father? Or do you assume that such blessings will be withheld? Despite God making God’s way to you in the person of Jesus, and offering you the purest expression of love and grace imaginable, do you still assume that you must earn your keep?
Go on…take a seat
Tucked in the pages of the Old Testament is a beautiful picture of King David sitting before God. Immediately following his rebuke by the Prophet Nathaniel scripture records that “King David went in and sat before the Lord” (2nd Samuel 7:18). The verse is simple and uncomplicated. It’s easy to miss. Yet the common-place nature of the verse suggests it to be an action that David preformed countless times before. David knew exactly where to go to connect with the Lord. When David felt an inward desire to be in God’s presence, he journeyed to a sacred spot and sat down.