How the open Bible in our church sanctuary sets off my struggle with perfectionism – Ecclesiastes 7:15-8:8, Part 2

In our church sanctuary, we display a large open Bible on the communion table located on the back wall of the stage. Can anyone read it from where they’re sitting?  Nope.  Neither can I, and I stand way closer to the Bible than the rest of the congregation.  The print in the Bible is large,Continue reading “How the open Bible in our church sanctuary sets off my struggle with perfectionism – Ecclesiastes 7:15-8:8, Part 2”

Can an ironic proverb help us make sense of our complex world? – Ecclesiastes 7:15-8:8, Part 1

Are you feeling perplexed?  Confused by the world we live in?  If so, you are not alone.  How many of you are familiar with Veggie Tales?  The creator of Veggie Tales, Phil Vischer has been making some fascinating informational videos relating to racial justice in the USA.  One video answers the question why Black ChristiansContinue reading “Can an ironic proverb help us make sense of our complex world? – Ecclesiastes 7:15-8:8, Part 1”

The way to have a better life…now – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 5

I love the encouragement of this picture. With two and a half months to go in 2020, many of us are holding out for a better life in 2021. Here in the USA, the bitter presidential election will be over. It seems that we will get beyond Covid in 2021. So does that mean, asContinue reading “The way to have a better life…now – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 5”

How to overcome anger and discontentment, and have joy – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 4

Look at the woman in the picture. What do you notice? Longing, perhaps. Someone who is on the outside and wants to be on the inside. Frustration with life, maybe. Some who is upset enough to lean their forehead against a door. I wonder if something happened on the other side of the door thatContinue reading “How to overcome anger and discontentment, and have joy – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 4”

Why listening to painful things is better than foolish laughter – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 3

I have been in a doctoral program for the last two years, and this past spring I finished my coursework and passed comprehensive exams. That means I now need to write the dissertation.  A book.  I’m writing a book.  And it feels like a mountain.  The first step was to write a proposal for myContinue reading “Why listening to painful things is better than foolish laughter – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 3”

Why I like weddings better than funerals, and why I might be wrong – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 2

I like weddings more than funerals.  At a wedding there is excitement and joy and dancing.  At a funeral, while there is sometimes laughter remembering stories about the deceased, and while there can be joy that the person is suffering no more and is at home with the Lord, let’s face it that funerals areContinue reading “Why I like weddings better than funerals, and why I might be wrong – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 2”

A poem that can help you have a better life? – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 1

Have you ever longed for a better world?  2020 is a good year to long for a better world, isn’t it?  Or maybe I should say it is an easy year to long for a better world?  But while it is easy to long for a better world, actually achieving that better world can seemContinue reading “A poem that can help you have a better life? – Ecclesiastes 7:1-14, Part 1”

The ancient secret to finding true fulfillment in life – Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, Part 5

Look at the joy on the girl’s face in the picture above. Isn’t it wonderful? We can only imagine how she got covered in paint, but there is no mistaking that she is feeling deeply joyful about it. Perhaps we adults should let our hair down and have a paint battle from time to time.Continue reading “The ancient secret to finding true fulfillment in life – Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, Part 5”

Are social media companies making promises they can’t fulfill? – Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, Part 4

Have you seen the recent commercials by Facebook or Tik Tok? Look at the smiles and joy emanating from the people in the commercials. What message would you say these commercials are sending? Here’s what I think the message is: “If you participate in our network you will experience joyful life, true community, fulfillment andContinue reading “Are social media companies making promises they can’t fulfill? – Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, Part 4”

The Source of True Joy – Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, Part 3

If money can’t buy happiness, what can? In the previous post I mentioned that we humans can allow ourselves to believe that wealth is our hope, our savior, our peace, our life. As we continue this week’s five-part blog series on Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, open your Bible and read how the Teacher illustrates this false trust inContinue reading “The Source of True Joy – Ecclesiastes 5:8-6:12, Part 3”