Devotional Archives

  • Outward Appearance

    December 22nd, 2014

    When I entered the grocery store, he caught my attention immediately. The young man was of a different race than I. He had an unusual haircut and was dressed in a manner that I considered offensive. He looked out of place. After shopping, I went to the self-checkout to pay ...

  • 4th Sunday of Advent

    December 21st, 2014

    Three songs that are recorded in the Bible tell of God’s great reversal. Hannah rejoiced, liberated from her barrenness. Moses and Miriam led the singing when the Israelites escaped from Egypt (Exod. 15:20-21). Mary, the mother of Jesus, celebrated the deliverance her son would bring (Luke 1:46-55). From these songs, ...

  • Tempted

    December 20th, 2014

    The supermarket aisles were jammed, and customers jostled to be checked out. A store employee helped me unload my shopping cart. As the total came up on the checkout screen, I noticed a black plastic square on the bottom of the cart. I didn’t remember that being there before. I ...

  • Elephants and Crickets

    December 19th, 2014

    Have you ever had an elephant in your house? Probably not! But if you ever did, you would know exactly where it was. Have you ever had a cricket in your house? Last year I did, and I spent days searching for it. I would listen for that high-pitched chirping, ...

  • Loving Doubting Thomas

    December 18th, 2014

    As a child, I found faith in God easy. I felt it when singing hymns and hearing Bible stories in Sunday school and church. I felt it when I prayed. As I got older, though, I found that holding on to my faith — and even, sometimes, a belief in ...

  • A Christmas Gift of Thanks

    December 17th, 2014

    When one of our church members was ringing the bell for the Salvation Army at the grocery store, a homeless man approached the kettle and noticed the sign stating that the bell-ringers were from our church. The homeless man asked, “What church is that?” The bell-ringer pointed toward our building ...

  • An Infinite Love

    December 16th, 2014

    I saw Lia for the last time last summer at the seaside. Her face was pale and strained with suffering. Her eyes, though circled with dark rings, were still luminous and lively even though she was thin from chemotherapy. Lia was bursting with love from every pore, and she lavished ...

  • Trusting in the Lord

    December 15th, 2014

    My young grandson loves playing and swimming in the pool. When he was barely two years old, I watched as he walked out onto the diving board, ready to jump into the water. Being the ever-cautious grandfather, I was very scared for him. He looked down and said, “My daddy ...

  • 3rd Sunday of Advent

    December 14th, 2014

    As jubilation for the Christmas season increases, I am reminiscing about my early years at school. We sang about the sweet story of old, when Jesus lived here among us and loved little children, calling them lambs of his fold. Singing those hymns often brought me close to him. And ...

  • More Seams

    December 13th, 2014

    From the pulpit in our church, one can see the seam in the carpet that separates the two shades of red carpet pieces. The seam represents the point where the old sanctuary was enlarged in the early 1990s because this small country church needed more seats for people to come ...