If we consider the absurdly specific details, all of which had to be lined up perfectly, in order for you to have been born and exist, on this planet, as you are… it’s breathtaking. Solar System Earth is not just a rock in space. Far from it; this rock is very special. It’s 93million miles from the sun, a modest star, all things considering. A little further away, and plants[…]
In our fast-paced, consumerist, interconnected, microwaveable, express-delivery primed culture, slowing down to rest feels like the most /un/natural thing in the world. It puts me in mind of a mile-long freight train just putting on its breaks. Have you ever heard the diabolical screeching? That’s that’s how strongly my mind resists coming to rest!
What’s that? You would still like to try? OK! It’s difficult but not impossible.
A few days ago I was sitting in the living room, having my personal quiet time with God. My roommate walked unannounced and said, “Hey let’s pray for T______ and his team.” He wasn’t even part of either of our organizations; nevertheless we spent the next five minutes in prayer. At the end, I was not irritated in the least that he had disturbed my personal time with God. Rather,[…]
How often do we coldly entreat God, “Fix it! Fix it!” His reply is, “Feel it! Feel it!” If your prayer doesn’t move you, it certainly won’t move God. I remember it vividly. About a decade ago I was several years into my struggle with the chronic pain in my legs that limited my physical activity. I had prayed and received a prayer from others in multiple environments, but there[…]
Cultural expectations these days are tougher to meet than ever. Imagine the pressure on young guys to create a proposal event for their ladies that is at once memorable, thoughtful, and grandiose. Now imagine what it would take to make it a surprise to her. Now… try doing it from 7,800 miles away in the metropolitan Middle East. Herein was my task. Heather and her girlfriends Larissa and Kristy are[…]
Let’s talk Jesus, shall we? Jesus came between sinful man and holy God and made the ultimate intercession on the cross. He pleaded God’s case to man, calling everyone to repent and walk in love. He pleaded man’s case to God, asking for us to be forgiven in our ignorance. In the end, he bore the weight of just punishment for the sins of all mankind in his body on[…]
I’m going to tell you one of the most effective tools I’ve found for the work that I do over here in the Middle East. What if I told you it’s also effective in America as well? Would you want to use it? It transcends cultural boundaries. It opens up hearts. It reaches over denominational lines. It takes people from the farthest-flung corners of the earth and puts them on[…]
1. The example of Jesus. The book of Acts 10:38 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. Colossians 1:15 says, “He is the image of the invisible God….” The Greek word used for image is eikon, which means Jesus is the exact imprint of the father. That means Jesus[…]
1. Minimalism – (https://www.becomingminimalist.com/what-is-minimalism/) Minimalism takes the focus away from what we have and puts it on the meaning that we get from the things we do have. Pastor and conference speaker Louie Giglio once joked, “Is there anything in the world more anti-Jesus than a storage unit?” (Don’t get offended—I said joked!) Seriously, no offense if you have a storage unit, but let’s think about it. You can do[…]
I’ve been provoked. I’m angry. I have a righteous indignation. It all started in one of the city’s many malls the other day. I was getting another charger for my cell phone (hopefully one that won’t break this time) and some groceries. As I finished, I was walking toward the taxi line to head back toward my part of town. As I approached one of the mall’s atria, I begin[…]
It is my great pleasure to feature Stephen Garner for the first time. I hope you enjoy my father’s unique blend of biblical insights, illuminating anecdotes, and punny repartée. Our numerous hikes together over the past decade have then a powerful connecting force during my young adult years. Read more of his work at https://hikerdude.wordpress.com/. Someone asked me once how I became interested in hiking. I hadn’t really given it[…]