Posts from December 2016

The Power of Simple Words

We did not follow cleverly devised stories when we told you about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ in power, but we were eyewitnesses of his majesty.—2 Peter 1:16   Raucous laughter marked the guests in my father’s hospital room: Two old truck drivers, one former country/western singer, one craftsman, two women from neighboring…

God’s Never Failing Love

God will not let you go. The big news of the Bible is not that you love God but that God loves you! He tattooed your name on the palm of his hand. His thoughts of you outnumber the sand on the shore. You never leave his mind, escape his sight, or flee his thoughts.…

The Aroma of Christ

Thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads in every place the fragrance that comes from knowing him. – 2 Corinthians 2:14   (NRSV) As I was working in my garden one day, I noticed one winter rose starting to bloom. Since I knew that the…

The Hope That Christmas Brings

When Christ was born, so was our hope. Of all the delights of the season, this is why I love Christmas. The event invites us to believe the wildest of promises: God became one of us so we could become one with him. He did away with every barrier, fence, sin, bent, debt, and grave.…

Christmas in Captivity

On those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned.—Isaiah 9:2   Rev. Martin Niemoller, a prominent German pastor, spent nearly eight years in **** concentration camps because he openly opposed Hitler. On Christmas Eve 1944, Niemoller spoke these words of hope to his fellow prisoners in Dachau: “My dear friends, on…

Who Do You Say He Is?

Who do you say I am?—Matthew 16:15   In a 1929 Saturday Evening Post interview, Albert Einstein said, “As a child I received instruction both in the Bible and in the Talmud. I am a Jew, but I am enthralled by the luminous figure of the Nazarene. . . . No one can read the…

The Greatest Gift Ever Given

“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6   Christmas is a time set aside to remember and celebrate the birth of Jesus. …

What Can I Give Him?

Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits.—Psalm 103:2   One year, those responsible for decorating their church for Christmas decided to use the theme of “Christmas lists.” Instead of decorating with the usual shiny gold and silver ornaments, they gave each person a red or green tag. On one side they…

A Remarkable Gift

A remarkable gift can arrive in an unremarkable package! One did in Bethlehem. We don’t often think of Paul in our Christmas reflections. Yet we should. His words in Philippians 2:5-11   are the Bible’s most eloquent summary of the Bethlehem promise: “Who being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God .…

It’s About His Presence

Therefore I will look to the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation; My God will hear me. —Micah 7:7   She was frantically trying to get everything done. She had her small child with her, but for a moment, she lost sight of him. In sheer panic, she started retracing her…