Ezekiel and the flying table? – Ezekiel 1, Part 4

In the previous post about the vision of Ezekiel 1, Ezekiel watches shocked as four living creatures powered by the Spirit of God fly out of a thunderstorm into close proximity to him. Now read verses 15-21 where Ezekiel describes these astounding beings further. Near the feet of each creature, Ezekiel sees some unique wheels,Continue reading “Ezekiel and the flying table? – Ezekiel 1, Part 4”

Ezekiel and the Spirit-led creatures – Ezekiel 1, Part 3

This week we began studying Ezekiel chapter 1 (starting here), and so far in verses 1-4 we have learned that Ezekiel was part of a group of 10,000 Jews that were exiled from the city of Jerusalem to Babylon. After five years of living there, on the banks of the Kebar River, Ezekiel sees anContinue reading “Ezekiel and the Spirit-led creatures – Ezekiel 1, Part 3”

Would you want to receive a vision from God? – Ezekiel 1, Part 2

In the previous post, we began studying the book of Ezekiel in the Hebrew Bible. In chapter 1, verse 1, Ezekiel tells us that he was among exiles by the Kebar River.  Psalm 137:1, a psalm written by exiles in Babylon says, “By the rivers in Babylon, we sat and wept, when we remembered Zion.” Continue reading “Would you want to receive a vision from God? – Ezekiel 1, Part 2”

When God’s presence is gone – Ezekiel 1, Part 1

Think about the last time you encountered the presence of God.  When was it?  How did it happen?  In a worship service singing a song?  In Bible study?  In nature?  Maybe at a youth retreat around a campfire?  Now think about how long has it been since you encountered the presence of God?  Maybe aContinue reading “When God’s presence is gone – Ezekiel 1, Part 1”

Are you experiencing the dark night of the soul? – Ezekiel 1, Preview

Does God seem distant to you? Ethereal? Maybe even a mirage or a fiction? Many people feel that way and wonder if something is wrong with them. Many feel guilt or shame when they have doubts about God. They wish they had a closer relationship with God. They wish their experience of God was moreContinue reading “Are you experiencing the dark night of the soul? – Ezekiel 1, Preview”

How a prophetic word can change your life (and the world) – Intro to Ezekiel, Part 5

I am excited to start studying this prophetic book of Ezekiel.  Prophets are often conceived of people who predict the future.  They seem glamorous.  They hear from God.  What I have come to learn, and this is only bolstered by my introductory studies of Ezekiel, is that the prophetic life is not glamorous, and itContinue reading “How a prophetic word can change your life (and the world) – Intro to Ezekiel, Part 5”

When God feels distant or fictional – Intro to Ezekiel, Part 4

Does God feel distant, or have you wondered if God is just a thing of the past? Maybe he wasn’t even real back then? While the stories of God’s work in the past sound great, and might even be encouraging and inspiring, what we really want is for God to show up in our livesContinue reading “When God feels distant or fictional – Intro to Ezekiel, Part 4”

Why prophetic ministry is not glamorous – Intro to Ezekiel, Part 3

The late singer Keith Green once gave a talk about prophets, saying that he met people who considered him a prophet and people who wanted to be prophets too. Green’s response was, “You might not realize what you’re hoping for.” Prophetic ministry can actually be very difficult. This week (starting here) we’re meeting Ezekiel theContinue reading “Why prophetic ministry is not glamorous – Intro to Ezekiel, Part 3”

Being faithful in the waiting [First Sunday of Advent, part 3]

Thus far the readings for the First Sunday of Advent have begun with a prophecy from 600 BC that God would send a new king to Israel, and that the people needed to get ready for that king by practicing repentance.  We looked at Luke 1, which describes Jesus as the fulfillment of that prophecy. Continue reading “Being faithful in the waiting [First Sunday of Advent, part 3]”

How to survive the holiday blues

Are you feeling low this Christmas?  Though there are Christmas lights everywhere, does your life feel like a dark place? In the sermon intro blog post, I introduced a story in the history of the Israelite nation of Judea.  At the time, Hezekiah was King, and he was trapped inside the Judean capital city, Jerusalem. Continue reading “How to survive the holiday blues”