Hurry Up and Be Still!

“How are you?” my friend asked me on the phone. “Busy,” I replied. “What else is new?” he laughed. “Ever since we roomed together in college I’ve admired how disciplined and productive you are.” Years later, I still think about that exchange. Although it was opposite of my friend’s intention, I realized then that I…

A Love Letter to Jesus

Just before Valentine’s Day my heart was wonderfully warmed and filled with love for Jesus as I was reading one of my favorite Classics of Christian Devotion, The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis. I was inspired to compose a Love Letter to Jesus by paraphrasing some of his words on “Familiar Converse with Jesus.” I share…

Bless My Enemies, O Lord

How do you respond when a family member speaks harshly to you? When you’re publicly criticized or slandered? When you’re vandalized or abused? Often it’s people we love or those we serve who mistreat us. We all suffer in these ways, especially pastors and others who serve the Lord in ministry. How are we to…

Grow in Grace and Power for Daily Life

Ask most Bible students what God’s grace is and they’ll answer, “undeserved favor.” Indeed, the Bible teaches that despite our sinfulness (rejecting God’s love and rule and failing to love people as God loves us), because of Christ’s death we are forgiven and have a credit of righteousness on our account before God. We are now…

Meditating on a Tattoo

 Recently I was in a conversation with an older, conservative pastor and he was explaining why he thought it wasn’t good to put tattoos on our bodies that are meant to be temples for the Holy Spirit. Granted some tattooing is excessive and unappealing, but still I was uncomfortable with him making that judgment. I…