See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 1 John 3:1 NIV Our hearts cry out to be known. Sin keeps us hiding from one another. But something deep within us all longs for significance. And in a world that easily overlooks us, God sees. He knows your name, dear one. He calls it—even when no one else cares to know it—inviting you to turn your gaze to Him. You see, God also longs to be known. We are not nameless to God. He knows us, and He desires us to hear Him calling our names. He taught me this one day as I walked through the village next to our base in Pemba. I had been visiting the neighbors for hours, and I was late for a discipleship meeting. As I hurried down a hill, I noticed a very old lady in rags sitting in the dirt against a mud hut. She was blind. Her eyes were pure white. I felt the Lord asking me to stop for her. In the local dialect I asked her what her name was. She told me she had none. I thought perhaps she was from another tribe and didn’t understand my Makua dialect. I asked her again in a different language, but her answer was the same: “I am blind. I have no name.” There was another woman sitting nearby. I asked her if she knew the blind woman’s name, and she too replied: “She is blind, and she has no name.” I was stunned. I hugged [...]
The Lord reigns; he is robed in majesty; the Lord is robed; he has put on strength as his belt. Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved. Psalm 93:1 In the beginning God said, “Let there be…” and there was. Wonder still grips my soul at the thought of it. God—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—enjoying perfect fellowship with Himself, decided to create. The Word came forth as He expressed His thoughts. And all things came into being in obedience to the sounds God made. Amazing. Inconceivable. True. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. Hebrews 11:3 Oh, the power of God’s words! And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. Genesis 1:3 And God said, “Let the waters under the heavens be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. Verse 9 And God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth.” And it was so. Verse 11 In the beginning, all of creation moved in agreement with God’s words. No created thing denied Him obedience. Not even man. Until the day that man entertained a sound that disagreed with God. Adam and Eve trusted that sound, and for the first time, man denied God’s Word. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “You may surely eat of every tree of the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the [...]
Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. James 1:21 God wants His church to be well. Are you well, dear one? Can you proclaim the words of the old hymn and mean them? It is WELL with my soul! Many of us sing the words but miss the experience. We can’t even imagine what a well soul feels like. We’re so used to the unrest raging within us, the darkness that descends and oppresses. Biblical promises of peace like a river seem a distant fairy tale. Life remains anything but peaceful. It’s time to change that, dear one. It’s time for the cross of Christ to make you well. But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed. Isaiah 53:5 Receive it, beloved. Jesus has brought us peace. His wounds have healed us. Truth now proclaims, “It is well with your soul,” and God wants you to experience that wellness. But to do that, you need to know who you are. You see, that’s where the whole trouble began. The deceiver convinced Adam and Eve that they weren’t who they really were. The serpent slithered into their perfect world and directly contradicted what God had told them in Genesis 2:17, “but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your [...]
Wishing you a year filled with Christ's presence, redeeming love, and resurrection life! May the power of the cross be evident in you and reveal God's love to a broken world. Happy New Year from our family to yours!
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14 What’s your favorite part of the Christmas story, dear one? Is it Mary’s response to a visiting angel? Or perhaps the terrified shepherds tending their flock who found themselves engulfed in glory? I love the image of Magi from the east bowing to present costly gifts to a toddler King. If you let them, the details surrounding Jesus’ birth inspire awe and wonder. Today I’d like to spend some time treasuring one of those details tucked in our opening Scripture, “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” Have you considered the significance of that phrase, beloved? Perhaps you were not aware that the birth of God’s Son—the Word—came on the heels of four hundred years of silence from God. That may seem of little consequence to you. Maybe you’ve lived your whole life expecting God’s silence because that’s all you’ve known. But scripture overwhelmingly declares that God speaks to His created. He talked with Adam and Eve in the garden after He gave them life, and our first glimpse of Him after they sinned reveals a striking picture of God’s heart. Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” Genesis 3:8-9 Do you see it, dear one? Even after they sinned, God came seeking them. He desires [...]