The Jesus Who Surprises … A Review

And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, He interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. Luke 24:27

Dee Brestin’s The Jesus Who Surprises invites the student of the Word to walk on the Road to Emmaus with two of Jesus’ disciples. Not recognizing Jesus, they told Him that their hopes had been dashed when the One they thought was Israel’s Messiah had been crucified on the cross, buried, and now His body was missing.

As they walked, Jesus opened up the Scriptures to them. Brestin imagines the Scriptures that Jesus may have used.

Continue reading The Jesus Who Surprises … A Review

Magnify the Lord with Thanksgiving!

Butterfly-Close - 1 (1)

Bless the Lord, O My Soul!

Lovingkindness and truth have met together;
Righteousness and peace have kissed each other. Psalm 85:10

From winged artists’ palettes to fragrant nectar, from heavenly light and color displays to rolling hills and flatlands, our Father’s artistry and character shine forth as righteousness and peace kiss each other and spill onto the earth and all its inhabitants. May your Thanksgiving be filled with abundant delights as you meditate on the blessings our Lord has bestowed upon you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

God’s promise of a future and a hope beyond your difficulty

olive-tree-gethsemane-1

Olive tree in the Garden of Gethsemane, perhaps witnessing the tears of the Messiah the night He sweated drops of blood and cried out to the Lord, Luke 22:44. Yet, there’s the hope of the tree of life.

We are approaching a season that can be filled with great joy. The season can be a refocusing upon what is important.

The season can also be a time of great busyness as we get caught up in the shopping, cooking, partying, and “shoulds” of expectations.

For some, the season can be a time of remorse as we see the happiness of others and feel that we are not as fortunate as others.

Continue reading God’s promise of a future and a hope beyond your difficulty

Destitute in Delhi? Sickness? God is near

Slide1

A man’s spirit will endure sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear? Proverbs 18:14

In a hot bus in Delhi, people jammed together, even riding on the roof. Destitute. Crushed spirit?

A 19-year-old girl lay in her hospital bed wondering if she would have to live much longer … a burden on her parents and her brothers.

Father, take me to be with You! My parents can’t afford many more hospital bills. They’re tired, Lord. I’m tired. I don’t want to live like this. So many medical tests. So many doctors poking and questioning. So much pain. Take me!

Crushed spirit?

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
and saves the crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18

Taa…dddt, taa…dddt, taa…dddt, taa…dddt.  Silence. I look at the hospital room door. A white-haired man with black rimmed glasses smiles at me.

“I’ve been praying for you. May I come in?”

I nod.

This stranger with a cat-like smile and crutches praying for me? How’d he hear about me?

At my moment of despair, God sent me Reverend Henry. Christians I did not know were praying for me at churches I had not heard of.

That summer, Reverend Henry and I poured over the Scriptures together. He discipled me in the grace and goodness of God. Although he lived with legs ravaged by polio, his face glowed with joy.

Hospitals, doctors, and medical tests had become my way of life, but Reverend Henry showed me how to put my joy in the Lord.

A joyful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Proverbs 17:22

I was finally diagnosed with Celiac, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. Sometimes, a diagnosis is a relief.

In those nights when I could not sleep because of the pain, I found solace in the Psalms.

David’s spirit was crushed many times.

I cry out day and night before you. Let my prayer come before you; incline your ear to my cry! For my soul is full of troubles, and my life draws near to Sheol. Psalm 88:1-3

Then, he thought about his God, the Creator of the Universe, the One who had chosen David to be king, the Lord of Hosts who had empowered him to kill Goliath. David turned from his problems, his brokenness, to the greatness of God, and he praised God.

In the depths of our pity pit, God is near. He sent me Reverend Henry. He touched David as he prayed.

How has God reached through your brokenness to save you?

My prayer

Father, thank You that you are near when Your children are broken. I pray a special blessing for the men and women in the photo. Make Yourself known to them. Give them hope and eternity with You. Father, show us how we can be a Reverend Henry to others. Send us with joyful hearts. We love you, our Great and Dear Lord!

Epilogue

God miraculously healed me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome on November 21, 2010. I still have Celiac Disease, but that is controlled with diet. The sickness and pit drew me close to God and to my husband. God prepared me through that brokenness to do what I am doing today.

May you recognize what God is doing in your life and rejoice!