Two Sides of Contentment

I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. Philippians 4:11 (NLT) Contentment can be elusive. Despite the tenth commandment, or maybe because of it, contentment can be challenging to achieve. Even if we are content right now, we will soon be put to the test. Contentment is not natural. Paul said that…

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No Compromise

Joyful are people of integrity, who follow the instructions of the Lord. Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts. They do not compromise with evil, and they walk only in his paths. Psalm 119:1–3 (NLT) The introductory verses in Psalm 119 describe a path of success for…

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We Are the Body

Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other. Romans 12:4–5 (NLT) When we asked Jesus to forgive our sins and we accepted his gift of salvation, we became a…

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Pressing On

Oh, that we might know the Lord! Let us press on to know him. He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring.” Hosea 6:3 (NLT)  For you need endurance, so that after you have done God’s will, you may receive what was promised.…

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Speak to the Bones

Then he asked me, “Son of man, can these bones become living people again?” “O Sovereign Lord,” I replied, “you alone know the answer to that.” Then he said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to these bones and say, ‘Dry bones, listen to the word of the Lord! Ezekiel 37:3–4 (NLT) Dem bones Dem…

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Speak Up

Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed. Yes, speak up for the poor and helpless, and see that they get justice. Proverbs 31:8–9 (NLT) Is there anything complicated in understanding the meaning of these verses? I favor the NLT “Speak up for those who cannot speak for…

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Speak Faith

We have the same faithful spirit as what is written in scripture: I had faith, and so I spoke. We also have faith, and so we also speak. 2 Corinthians 4:13 (CEB) There is a strong connection between faith and speaking. It is not speech that merely fills the air with sounds; when we speak…

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God of Restoration

“So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, The crawling locust, The consuming locust, And the chewing locust, My great army which I sent among you. You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, And praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you;…

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Speak Grace

Let every word you speak be drenched with grace and tempered with truth and clarity. Colossians 4:6 (TPT) It does not take a genius to observe a lack of grace demonstrated in our world today. Speech in all segments of politics, education, science, society, and even sports is intentionally polarizing. There is minimal effort to…

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Speak Wisdom

The godly speak wise words and promote justice. The law of their God controls their thinking; their feet do not slip. Psalm 37:30–31 (NET) All wisdom is not the same. Or, stated differently, the wisdom that comes from God far exceeds any so-called wisdom that this world has to offer. The challenge that we face…

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Speak the Truth

Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. Ephesians 4:15 (NLT) Have you ever heard someone say, “Everyone has their own truth?” What exactly does that mean? Logically, if that were true, the case could be made…

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Speak the Name

And they called them in and ordered them not to speak or teach at all in the Name of Jesus. Acts 4:18 (NET) The Name of Jesus is beautiful. It is a mighty name. But it is also a controversial name. Tyrants and dictators have tried to stamp out the Name of Jesus without success.…

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Take Up Your Cross

Jesus said to everyone, “All who want to come after me must say no to themselves, take up their cross daily, and follow me.” Luke 9:23 (CEB) What does it mean to “take up our cross?” Some people see it as a burden, such as a physical challenge or a complicated relationship. People would describe…

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Nevertheless

They will look up to heaven and down at the earth, but wherever they look, there will be trouble and anguish and dark despair. They will be thrown out into the darkness. Nevertheless, that time of darkness and despair will not go on forever. Isaiah 8:21–9:1 (NLT) Words are fascinating—all words, really, but especially words…

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Do Something Small for God

On Sunday, July 31, I preached at Canvas Church, my home church, a message near and dear to my heart, “Do Something Small for God.”    

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A Thirst for God

O God, you are my God; I earnestly search for you. My soul thirsts for you; my whole body longs for you in this parched and weary land where there is no water. Psalm 63:1 (NLT) David wrote Psalm 63 out of his experience in the wilderness. The wilderness was a barren, desolate place where…

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Tear Down the Wall

A person’s wisdom yields patience; it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense. Proverbs 19:11 (NIV) In 1987, President Reagan said in a speech in Berlin, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” President Reagan was referring to the wall built by the communists, separating East and West Berlin. A little more than two years…

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The Cure for a Drought

A drought will strike her water supply, causing it to dry up. And why? Because the whole land is filled with idols, and the people are madly in love with them. Jeremiah 50:38 (NLT) California is once again facing drought conditions. The solution to a drought crisis is obviously water. Even in the best of…

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Got Tribulations? – Be of Good Cheer?

My dear family, when you find yourselves tumbling into various trials and tribulations, learn to look at it with complete joy, because you know that, when your faith is put to the test, what comes out is patience. What’s more, you must let patience have its complete effect, so that you may be complete and…

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Prepare to Engage

Just as you sent me into the world, I am sending them into the world. John 17:18 (NLT) Last week, we began to examine our options as we confront the forces of evil comprised of the world, Satan, our adversary, and our fleshly nature. In last week’s article, Resistance Is Not Futile, we learned that…

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