God wants me to be happy, not angry, and never to doubt? [False ideas Christians believe about…God’s desires for Christians. Part 4]

In 1 Timothy 3:12 we read that “all those who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.”  Woah.  Maybe God doesn’t want us to be happy, and only cares about us becoming godly or holy, even if it takes us being persecuted? How are we to understand this? Does GodContinue reading “God wants me to be happy, not angry, and never to doubt? [False ideas Christians believe about…God’s desires for Christians. Part 4]”

How to walk through pain [False ideas Christians believe about…difficulty. Part 5]

How should we respond in the midst of pain? The psalmists often lament, crying out their complaint to God as to why he is not answering their prayer.  This is why we are fact-checking statement about dealing with difficulty. The post you are reading is number 5 of 5. If you’re starting here, I encourageContinue reading “How to walk through pain [False ideas Christians believe about…difficulty. Part 5]”

A Guided Lament you can use right now

Do we lament when life is so rotten and dark that we have no where else to turn?  Yes. Do we lament when there is still hope, but much work yet to be done?  Yes. What we have seen this Advent as we’ve studied psalms of lament, is that lament is a faithful, clinging toContinue reading “A Guided Lament you can use right now”

How to lament: keep holding on to God

This week we have been studying Psalm 126 which reminds us that when you plant seeds of sorrow, God can give you a harvest of joy. In my previous post, I talked about the difficulty of gardening, and how the psalmist uses that as a metaphor for life.  But after all the clearing, tilling, weeding, and watering,Continue reading “How to lament: keep holding on to God”

What to do when life is hard and filled with tears

A friend of mine has graciously allowed me to borrow his tiller each year to get our garden ready for planting.  It is a monster of a tiller.  You have to grip that thing with all your might, lower your center of gravity, and hold on for dear life. I am not kidding.  It isContinue reading “What to do when life is hard and filled with tears”

What is a song of ascent? (the next U2 album?)

For years the rock band U2 has been hinting that they are going to release an album called Songs of Ascent. What might “Songs of Ascent” refer to?  Why would U2 think of that title? As the years went by, U2 changed directions a bit, first releasing an album called Songs of Innocence, and justContinue reading “What is a song of ascent? (the next U2 album?)”

How lament can bring beautiful restoration

Throughout this second week of Advent 2017, we’ve been talking about restoration from Psalm 85.  We’ve seen how God is at work to bring restoration and revival.  We’ve also learned our responsibility to work alongside God.  It can seem too hard sometimes when the restoration is going to require lots of sacrifice and effort.  SoContinue reading “How lament can bring beautiful restoration”

Who is responsible for restoration and revival? God? Us? Both?

Restoration and revival might take a lot of work.  I just did a Google image search on the phrase “the hard work of restoration”, and almost all of the pictures are about car restorations.  Some furniture.  Some homes.  There is restoration from natural disaster that can take years.  I suspect only a few of usContinue reading “Who is responsible for restoration and revival? God? Us? Both?”

What if America was invaded? A thought project to teach us how to be restored

Imagine that some nation invaded the USA, defeated us, and started carrying us away back to their land where we worked for them as slaves!  How would that feel?  Horrible, right?  And life in that foreign land would not be like life here.  It would be very, very hard.  And we would cry out inContinue reading “What if America was invaded? A thought project to teach us how to be restored”

Do you struggle with FOMO?

Do you struggle with FOMO?  Fear of missing out.  I recently read an article where a guy talked about his fear of missing out.  Because of the prevalence of social media in our society, and the quick access to social media accounts on our phones, FOMO is a real thing for many. The author ofContinue reading “Do you struggle with FOMO?”