Jesus, Them, and You

In any place in the Bible, but especially as we read through the prophets, some texts can feel a little obscure. What’s going on? Who are we talking about? It can be tempting to think, “I just don’t get it”, and move on to a passage where you feel a little more comfortable. Don’t give in to that thought. When you encounter a text where the meaning isn’t readily apparent, don’t skip past it. That passage has wisdom to reveal and it’s worth the work.

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For Such A Time As This

Letters were sent by couriers to all the king’s provinces, giving orders to destroy, to kill, and to annihilate all Jews, young and old, women and children, in one day, the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, which is the month of Adar, and to plunder their goods. Scripture can be quite grim at times. This is why Mordecai tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and ashes. Mordecai was a Jew. What I just read for you is the order that was written by the King at the request of Haman. Haman hated Mordecai and he paid the King so the King would write this decree to annihilate all the Jews in the country.

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Live By Faith

This morning, the prophet Habakkuk reminds us that “the righteous live by their faith” [2:4]. We know truly that our faith supports us, sustains us, gives us life. But sometimes – sometimes it is hard to have faith. Sometimes, there is just too much brokenness and pain and we start to wonder how long faith will keep us holding on. In our faith, we start to demand: “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not listen?” [1:2a]

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Remember, Thank, Tell

May grace and peace be yours in abundance in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. Amen

Ebola… Didn’t expect that on for an opener on Thanksgiving Eve did you?

This horrible deadly and devastating virus has gripped the world’s attention for the last few months. It’s outbreak in three West African countries is horribly distressing and worthy of our best efforts to care for and assist those affected. However, our fears seem a little more close to home. A Gallup poll taken in early November found that Ebola went from a nonexistent concern for American’s wellbeing to the third most overall mentioned threat to our health. One in 6 people named this virus as the top threat to U.S. health.

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Deceptive Words, Hard Words, Hopeful Words

Have you noticed; it has been an angry week. First it was the grape salad debacle and who could have imagined the furor this would cause; the outrage.

The whole state of Minnesota has been shamed by the New York Times and their food editor who says the signature thanksgiving food for us hardy folk in the great state of Minnesota is a grape salad. A grape salad baked in the oven no less. What kind of creepy thanksgiving food is that? You would have thought it would be a jello salad with bananas and whipped cream. I think I will cancel my subscription to the Times.

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Lead in Faith

It’s okay to admit that you don’t really know what just happened for the past five minutes. You heard a lot of names and places and situations that might have sounded very unfamiliar, and you may be left wondering what on earth King Sennacherib of Assyria and his Rabshakeh, or King Hezekiah and Isaiah son of Amoz have to do with you and your life. Allow me to give you a brief background on the situation, and allow me also to promise that this has a lot to do with you, your life, and what God is calling you to do.

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The Hall Pass

The hall pass. The purpose of this item is to illustrate that an individual has permission by the teacher to go to the restroom or possibly their locker. This pass serves a great and sometimes very necessary purpose. The student, after finishing their task, would then promptly return to the classroom to continue their learning. Right… Or the hall pass was an opportunity for students to kill time roaming the halls, wave at friends in other classrooms, and ultimately delay returning to the classroom as long as possible. How quickly we take a good thing and distort it for our own purposes?

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The Odd Couple

Dear friends in Christ, grace and peace. Amen

I miss my Dad.

I miss my mother in law as well.

I am thinking about both of them this morning. In fact, there is hardly a day that goes by that I don’t think about one or both of them. I miss their on-going presence in my life and the lives of my children. I am sad they are no longer here to see what my children are up to.

Who do you miss?

Who are you thinking about this morning on All Saints?

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It’s Not About Money

It’s always about money. Having enough, not having enough, looking like you have enough, needing more, keeping what’s yours and taking what isn’t, it’s what we are always talking about and thinking about. The root of all evil, that around which the world turns, time is money, money is power, it’s about money.

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