Powerful Love

May the Lord cause you to increase and enrich your love for each other and for everyone in the same way as we also love you.May the love cause your hearts to be strengthened, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his people. Amen.
1 Thessalonians 3:12-13 CEB

The other day my roommate and I were in Hobby Lobby looking for some Christmas decorations. We were walking up and down the aisles trying to find some good decorations to help us get in the holiday spirit. Every aisle we went down we found a billion things we loved (of course because it’s Hobby Lobby). As we walked down this one aisle, for probably the 5th time, I said something along the lines of “oh man everything is so cute, this is dangerous, maybe we shouldn’t have come here”. Right after I said it, a woman in the same aisle said “I know! Isn’t Hobby Lobby the best!”. We joked about how much money we were going to spend, and how we definitely shouldn’t have come to the store th…

Outside of Time

Look, he is coming with the clouds! Every eye will see him, including those who pierced him, and all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of him. This is so. Amen.“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “the one who is and was and is coming, the Almighty.” – Revelation 1:7-8 –
            Time. We keep track of it in gears on a watch or more likely by turning on our phone screen. When we have fun it seems to go faster and when we’re stuck in that class we dislike it seems to crawl to a slower pace. Sometimes we want to add more time to the day to get more done, have more time with a friend, or to take a longer nap! Whether we wish time was faster or slower, we’re all living within the constraint of time.
Since we live within time, it’s hard to imagine anything outside of it. It’s hard to imagine a Being that existed before time or outside of time. Since God created everything that means that before He created the universe in which we live, He existed before time. This i…

Blessings or Curses

Don’t go on and on, talking so proudly, spouting arrogance from your mouth, because the Lord is the God who knows, and he weighs every act.”
- 1 Samuel 2:3 CEB - What comes from our mouth is so easy to let fly sometimes. The moment a thought comes, it instantly spits out from us. Whether a joke, a blunt truth or even just a raw emotion, the words we say without thinking tend to be the ones that hurt those around us the most.
It is easy to rationalize that they are just words, but what we say counts as our actions to God just as much as doing the right thing. In fact, words create life in ourselves and others just as much as they can create death and destruction. We all have some kind of words or messages in our head that lean us towards negative self-thinking. Likewise, we all have moments when friends have spoken loving words to us that have raised our spirits. Each and every word we speak can be a blessing or a curse for those around us. I am thankful that God is a God that wants…

Hope Comes

Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
Psalm 42:5
I find that this time of year causes a significant amount of stress. The semester is wrapping up, assignments are due, tests abound and the holidays are fast approaching. It’s easy to feel bogged down in the struggle and anxiety, to despair that none if it will get done and that this hard time will never end.
But this psalm tells us that we have hope in God. Even in the midst of stressful times, we hope that there will be an end to the struggle. May we be reminded to praise God, because God is the one who brings hope into our lives. It may seem like the “downcast” time is forever, that we will never have peace again. God says otherwise. Have hope in the Lord, and know that joy comes in the morning.

Isaiah 43

Whole World in His Hands

"The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it,
the world and its inhabitants too. 2  Because God is the one who established it on the seas; God set it firmly on the waters."
Psalm 24: 1-2 

I've always loved those camp songs about God that I learned when I was a kid. Songs like "This Little Light of Mine" or "Father Abraham" still get stuck in my head to this day. The catchy lyrics, and fun melody make it so when you learn those songs, you will never forget them! When I read this scripture passage from Psalms, the first thing I thought of was "he's got the whole world in his hands, he's got the whole world in his hands". I started thinking about how something as simple as a children's song actually hold so much truth and knowledge about God. 
It is important to spend time in our faith recognizing the power and strength of God. I think it is amazing that we worship a God that wants to be so personal with us. How unique that God who crea…

Crying Out

Jesus and his followers came into Jericho. As Jesus was leaving Jericho, together with his disciples and a sizable crowd, a blind beggar named Bartimaeus, Timaeus’ son, was sitting beside the road. When he heard that Jesus of Nazareth was there, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, show me mercy!” Many scolded him, telling him to be quiet, but he shouted even louder, “Son of David, show me mercy!” Jesus stopped and said, “Call him forward.” – Mark 10:46-49 CEB –

It’s so easy to overlook the pain of others. I am in Dallas several times a week for seminary and will inevitably see the homeless individuals panhandling on the road seeking help and resources. People will debate what is the best way to help these individuals, but the majority of people will do nothing. There may be different reasons a person has to keep driving and do nothing, but it doesn’t change that these people on the fringes of society are often overlooked. When we can keep driving past someone’s pain and need, we c…