Pastor Note #109: Living as Hopeful People in Fearful Times

Are these hopeful times or are they fearful times?  I write these words on a warm day, after a hard winter of snow and ice.  The daffodils are poking up through the leaf litter in my flowerbeds.  The crocuses have already begun to bloom.  In fact, there are several dandelions in their yellow perkiness smiling … Continue reading Pastor Note #109: Living as Hopeful People in Fearful Times

Bible Note #42: Studies in James #1–James 1:1-4

In Matthew 7, in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells the story of two houses.  One was built on solid rock.  The rains fell, the wind blew, the floods of life came, but that built on solid rock house stood firm.  The other house was built on sand.  The rains fell, the wind blew, … Continue reading Bible Note #42: Studies in James #1–James 1:1-4

Quote of Note #102: Living by Faith and Not by Sight

"This kind of living ["living by faith rather than by sight"] invites opposition.  It will come first in the form of those who insist on living within the budget, thereby restricting the ability of God to reach the community.  The easiest answer to a leap of faith is 'No!'  The church that I now pastor … Continue reading Quote of Note #102: Living by Faith and Not by Sight

Quote of Note #100: No Panic in Heaven

"The Lord never makes a mistake.  One day, when we are in heaven, I'm sure we shall see the answers to the whys.  My, how often I have asked, 'Why?'  In heaven, we shall see God's side of the embroidery.  God has no problems--only plans.  There is never panic in heaven." Corrie ten Boom, He … Continue reading Quote of Note #100: No Panic in Heaven

Quote of Note #99: Worry and God’s Strength for the Day

"Worrying is carrying tomorrow's load with today's strength--carrying two days at once.  It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time.  Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow--it empties today of its strength. . . . Jesus is stronger than all of our problems." Corrie ten Boom, He Cares, He Comforts: In Sickness and In … Continue reading Quote of Note #99: Worry and God’s Strength for the Day

Quote of Note #97: Comfort in All Times of Need

Question 26:  What do you believe when you say, "I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth"? Answer:  That the eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who out of nothing created heaven and earth and everything in them, who still upholds and rules them by his eternal counsel and providence, … Continue reading Quote of Note #97: Comfort in All Times of Need

Pastor Note #90: The Fearless Church

Fear can be a distressingly common feature of church life across America.  The Bible is quite clear on this point.  The only proper source of fear for Christians should be God.  Nothing else in all creation should cause us fear.  Of course, I know what it is to feel fear and anxiety.  As do, I … Continue reading Pastor Note #90: The Fearless Church

Bible Note #40: Conversation with the Angel–Luke 1:5-25

He was an old man, and his back ached with the day’s work.  Some of the younger priests did the heavy lifting required by the work.  But still, the old priest had spent most of the day on his feet.  And so, there was a sharp, grinding ache in the small of his back, stabbing … Continue reading Bible Note #40: Conversation with the Angel–Luke 1:5-25

Prayer Note #48 — A Preachers Prayer to Be Used Rightly by the Word of God

[Yes, that's what I meant to say: "to be used rightly by the word of God."] Your word, Lord, is alive and powerful in the ears of faith. Grant me believing ears, so that I will hear your word clearly and welcome your word warmly into my mind, my heart, and my life. My calling … Continue reading Prayer Note #48 — A Preachers Prayer to Be Used Rightly by the Word of God

Sermon #50 — Then, Now, and Forever: Refreshing Times — Acts 3:11-23

Astonishment is an emotion that modern Americans have very mixed feelings about. We're mostly quite comfortable about other people's astonishment.  We're generally less comfortable  with feeling astonishment ourselves.  I don't mean simple amazement at some entertaining stunt making the rounds of the internet. The kind of astonishment that I'm referring to here is the feeling … Continue reading Sermon #50 — Then, Now, and Forever: Refreshing Times — Acts 3:11-23