Christmas Tests and Temptations

For many, Christmas is a time of rejoicing with family and loved ones. Holiday traditions, like decorating the family Christmas tree, occur but once a year. There is cookie baking, fudge making, and many other seasonal temptations that make children smile but cause some adults to fret over increased pant size. Christmas is certainly a time for good cheer as it marks the birth of Jesus Christ. But if we think back to the time of our Lord’s birth, we can all acknowledge the incredible trial that was set before the Virgin Mary.

Not only did … READ MORE

Change this Christmas!

We all struggle with sin. Different sins plague each of us but we all fall short in the eyes of God. It is a lifelong battle to “put off” our old nature and replace it with the righteousness of Jesus Christ. But this is God’s desire, and He is faithful to provide us with the grace and strength to live according to His will.

We became new creatures the moment we accepted Jesus as the Lord of our life. The Holy Spirit lives within each believer and because The Helper is lives within us, we can set aside sin. The resurrected Christ saw to it that … READ MORE

Walking With Fear

“Sometimes fear does not subside and one must choose to do it afraid.”
~Elizabeth Elliot

I would like to say that my faith is so strong that I am never afraid, but that would be a lie. Some circumstances in life have caught me off guard and I permitted fear to hinder my faith. Panic and stress are excellent at ushering in feelings and chaos. The death of my mother, a recent job loss, and my prodigal son are all examples when I have succumbed to fear. Even mature Christians suffer from moments of weakness that result in fear.

The most repeate… READ MORE

Thankful For Friends

God created us with an innate need to connect with others. Newborns recognize their mother’s voice upon birth, and many believe while still in utero. Like our God, we long for relationships and families are where we first learn to connect.

Jesus grew up with half-brothers and half-sisters (Mark 6:3). Although the Bible does not tell us much about His childhood, aside from Luke 2:41-52, it is reasonable to believe our Lord had fun moments with his family, in addition to much hard work. There is no mention of special friends until Jesus … READ MORE

Total Obedience!

God expects His children to be obedient, completely obedient! Partial obedience is disobedience in the eyes of our heavenly Father. We cannot pick and chose what we want to do when God directs us into action. King Saul learned this lesson and the consequences of His disobedience were very costly. In fact, his partial obedience is what cost him his kingship.

In 1 Samuel 15, the prophet Samuel is sent by God to anoint Saul as King of Israel. Samuel then gives Saul a message from God. “’Go and attack Amalek, and utterly destroy all that th… READ MORE

Imitators of Christ

How easy it is to see the flaws in others! The rude customer at Walmart, the impatient driver who cuts us off, the mom who ignores her kids while they run wild in the church lobby, even the angry dad who yells at his child for dropping a just purchased hotdog will rattle our cage. The actions of others affect us, so we find ways to cope with our discomfort. How we react is a choice and it is often based on our own spiritual condition.

Generally, our tendency is to point a finger. Many will side-step love, patience, kindness, and self-control (all … READ MORE

How Do I Heal?

“’For I will restore health to you and heal you of your wounds,’ says the LORD.”
Jeremiah 30:17a

Life is never just smooth sailing and good times. With our mountaintop experiences, there are also treks into deep valleys. Everyone goes through adversity. Pain and suffering are included in the package called life.

Scripture tells us about spiritual seasons and thankfully, they come and go. We are never stuck in a never-ending season of pain, sorrow, rejection, and adversity. There is always hope and a way out of the lowlands or … READ MORE

Is There Salvation For Man’s Tongue?

Everyone has a problem with words at some point in time. Emotions get the best of us and reckless words spill out. A lack of self-control, impatience, or a focus on self is certainly fuel that can spark an unhealthy fire.

“Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things. See how great a forest a little fire kindles! And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature, and it is set on fire by hell.” James 3:5-6 (NKJV)

And where do o

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God’s tough love

How reassuring it is that God promises to meet our needs!

“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

However, many of us are like children when it comes to distinguishing our needs from our wants. A child may think they need a piece of candy but their parent understands it is a desire and cannot always be indulged. A parent knows more about healthy eating habits than a three-year-old. So, at the risk of enduring full-blown tantrums, parents have said, “No” to unhealth… READ MORE

The Power Of Encouragement

Encouragement is emphasized in the Bible because it is necessary to our walk of faith. Jesus told us that, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. (Jn. 16:33b).” Christ even told His followers that they would be hated (Jn. 15:19). He did not sugar coat the Christian walk. However, He did temper His honest forecast with cheer. He reminded them that He has overcome the world. The battle has been won. We are victorious over every sin and adversity because the blood of Jesus covers and empowers us.

J… READ MORE

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