Say “Thank You” (Luke 17:11-18:14)

Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed?  Where are the other nine?  Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?” (Luke 17:17-18) One thing that my parents drilled into me from a young age was the importance of thanking someone when he or she does something for me or gives something to me.  If someone gives me a gift, then I need to send a card ... [Continue Reading]

Rest from Religion (Matthew 11)

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28) Religion is wearying.  No matter how hard I try to be perfect or to live up to God's standards of holiness, I fall far short.  The sacrifices I bring only last for a day, and it's almost as if the harder I try, the less likely I am to actually get God's attention.  Religion is ... [Continue Reading]

Just Like Everybody Else (Amos 1-3)

This is what the Lord says: “For three sins of Judah, even for four, I will not relent.  Because they have rejected the law of the Lord and have not kept his decrees, because they have been led astray by false gods, the gods their ancestors followed...” (Amos 2:4) There's a tension as it comes to Christianity.  It's complicated, really.  The tension is that we receive ... [Continue Reading]

Giving Thanks (2 Chronicles 6-7)

When all the Israelites saw the fire coming down and the glory of the Lord above the temple, they knelt on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped and gave thanks to the Lord, saying, “He is good; his love endures forever.” (2 Chronicles 7:3) After Solomon finished praying to the Lord, a fire from heaven consumed the offerings, and the glory of the ... [Continue Reading]

Truly Humbled (2 Samuel 7; 1 Chronicles 17)

Then King David went in and sat before the Lord, and he said:  “Who am I, Sovereign Lord, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far?  And as if this were not enough in your sight, Sovereign Lord, you have also spoken about the future of the house of your servant—and this decree, Sovereign Lord, is for a mere human!” (2 Samuel 7:18-19) David had every reason ... [Continue Reading]

It’s Not You… It’s Him (Deuteronomy 7-8)

When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the Lord your God for the good land he has given you. (Deuteronomy 8:6) It's easy to think that you're responsible for what you have.  After all, you've worked hard, you've been thrifty, you've been diligent.  But there's so much more to what you have, isn't there? Who gave you the ability to work?  Where did your job come ... [Continue Reading]