How I Know God Is Looking For You

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(The Parable of the Lost Sheep) When my daughter was a toddler, I lost her. We were at a community event and as I paused to watch a performance, she toddled off. I swear I didn’t take my eyes off of her for more than a few seconds. When I went to pick her up, she was gone. I looked …

Are You Enough For God?

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“In Africa, we use names that have meaning,” she explained in a smooth voice that exuded warmth and hospitality. We were sitting under the shade of her friend’s carport, next to one of the nicest houses in Soweto. “I must get to know you so that I can give you a name that means something in my language,” she continued. …

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When Jesus Chooses Teams

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As long as I live I will never forget my elementary school PE teacher. That woman was a force! She was one of the oldest teachers at the school and she wore her age like a badge of honor. Her small tanned lips were formed into a permanent frown, telegraphing to students and faculty alike that she had no patience …

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Sometimes Faith Requires Perseverance

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“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before …

Why Faith and Belief Are Not The Same Thing

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“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). Sometimes we treat faith and belief as if they are synonyms. Maybe you haven’t made this mistake, but I have. I have made the mistake of reducing my “faith” to a set of “beliefs.” This is usually followed by a hearty pat on …

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The Size of Your Barn Is Not What Matters

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Jesus warns against building bigger barns, but I don’t think the size of the barn is the point. When’s the last time you moved? As in, moved from one address to another? It’s been about eleven years for me, and yet, I vividly remember thinking “where did all this STUFF” come from? Stuff that I ended up packing, moving, and …

What To Do When You Wonder If God Cares

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“God, don’t you care?” That was Martha’s question as she teetered on the verge of an anxiety attack. Martha’s question resonates with me. I’ve cried out to God in this way innumerable times. “God, don’t you care that life feels hard right now?” Or that my friend is sick. Or that no matter how much good I think I’m doing, …

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My Need for a Good Samaritan

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The Parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:29-37) is one of the most familiar Bible stories. The concept of a “Good Samaritan” is ubiquitous far outside the church. It’s even been codified in laws such as Florida’s Good Samaritan Act, offering protection from civil damages when you act in good faith to save someone in an emergency situation (or, curiously, …

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Should I Give God Credit?

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It’s an old adage, “give credit where credit is due.” It’s easy to abide when I’m writing an academic paper and I can add a footnote to properly credit my sources. But in life, it’s harder. Sometimes, it’s especially hard to give God credit. According to the Gospel of Luke, there was a time when Jesus sent 70 people to …