The Choice

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Parenting can be a challenging occupation. Not the least of which is because children are curious. However, their curiosity can get them into trouble. They want to explore and can find themselves engaged in foolish activity that can bring harm to themselves. As Solomon addresses his children, and by extension, as God addresses His children, he wants them to understand that the Continue reading

Compassion Demonstrated

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Wealth. It is something that people pursue every day. From simply going to work to pay the bills, to building corporations that span the globe and generate billions of dollars. From our earliest days we learn that, to some degree, we must spend our time pursing wealth. Unfortunately, the pursuit of such wealth can distract us from what is most valuable in life. In our text, Solomon is teaching his son where Continue reading

Direction Offered

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Life is a journey. As we travel the road of life, we discover that the journey can be long, arduous, and sometimes confusing. There are many signposts along the way; but if those signposts do not originate with the Lord, they will serve only to misdirect us. As Solomon speaks to his son about navigating the journey of life, he gives clear directions. He greatly desires that his son’s journey Continue reading

Charted Waters

Do you think you have a kingdom heart

The poet Robert Frost once wrote, “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—/ I took the one less traveled by / And that has made all the difference.” As we begin a new study in the book of Proverbs, we are encouraged to walk in the path of wisdom. To walk in wisdom is to take the road less traveled. Jesus said it this way, “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matt. 7:13-14).

I have always been struck by Continue reading

Reach

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Reach. I like the title to our lesson this week. I think about a little boy reaching across the counter to grab the cookie jar. Because his arm is too short, he must strain his little body as he stands on his tiptoes and extends his fingers as far as he can, just barely reaching his prize. But alas, he succeeds and with a big smile eats a delicious cookie.

The church was Continue reading

Accepting

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Freedom. It’s a word we all love. More than that, it is an experience we both enjoy and expect in our culture. Unfortunately, not everyone in the world is free. For some, freedom is a distant dream. They long for the day when they can be free. For Christians, however, freedom is a reality that defines our faith. The Bible says that “It is for freedom that that Christ has set us free” (Gal 5:1, NIV). Followers of Christ are not bound to God by religious tradition or Continue reading

Citizens

c9ee3ab6a1443cfec2e341ba151f127fSeveral years ago, my wife and I had a house build, but only the downstairs. I took the next year-in-a half to finish the upstairs. As I spent my nights and weekends working, there were times when my son, who was only three, would come by my side and mimic what I was doing. I have a fond memory of him picking up his little plastic hammer and trying to nail a 2×4. As we come to our text (Romans 13:1-14) Paul is urging the church to become Continue reading

Sacrifices

 

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Not long ago I watched a documentary on the transformation that takes place inside a cocoon. With less than scientific language, let me explain it: a caterpillar is enveloped by a cocoon. While in that state the caterpillar literally dissolves into a pile of goo, then miraculously is rebuilt into a lifeform utterly different from what it was. It goes in as an ugly little worm and comes out a beautiful flying butterfly. The scientist’s explanation was longer, but not clearer. Quite simply, Continue reading

Mercy

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Adoption is something that is common. Families adopt children every day. What is unique is that these families have a bond of love as strong as families who have not adopted children. God’s love is like that. It is strong enough to love adopted children as much as natural children.

In our text (Romans 11:17-32), Paul is addressing Continue reading

Saved

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We were walking through Calcutta when we saw the temple for Kali. Curious, we walked to the gate and looked inside. A Hindu priest was holding a goat in one hand and holding up a knife in the other. To our surprise, he suddenly sacrificed the animal. He then dragged the goat through the temple to the Kali idol. As he did, the Kali devotees frantically took the blood from the animal and put it on the idol. Our interpreter told us they did this because they believed Continue reading