Need Prayer!

The tension was beginning to build for Jesus. The Pharisees followed his every move, waiting to pounce in public. Jesus was becoming too popular with the people. That always riles those who think they are in charge. To make matters worse, Jesus was getting away with breaking their rules. If the people believed their rules weren’t important, why did they need the Pharisees? Add to this external pressure, the internal priority that Jesus knew he must choose a group to mentor; and it was time to make the choice. That’s why "Jesus went to out into the hills to pray." (Luke 6:12) He wanted undistracted time with His Father. He wanted to hear His Father’s words louder than anything the Pharise

Finger Pointing

No one likes to be singled out for doing something wrong, especially when it is unintentional. That's what happened to Jesus' disciples as they walked hungry through a grain field. They picked some grain to stave hunger pains until they could get a regular meal. Read the Story: One Sabbath Jesus was going through the grainfields, and his disciples began to pick some heads of grain . . . Some of the Pharisees asked, “Why are you doing what is unlawful?” Luke 6:1,2 The problem was that it was the Sabbath with a no-harvest rule in place. Were the Pharisees following them, waiting to catch them in some irreligious act on this holy day of rest? With the first pick, they were on this act of t

Time for New

No one tears a patch from a new garment and sews it on an old one. Luke 5:36 When is old over? When is it time for something new? Read Luke 5:36-37 In Jesus’ day, the old ways were bringing people down. Not because old is bad; but because old doesn’t make something new. The old law had holes in it. Mostly they were holes that the priests caused. They were holes of legalism--follow all the rules to be right with God. They were holes of self-righteous piety--I am better than you because I follow the rules. They were holes of oppression--I will tell you where you are sinful and make you pay for it. Jesus came to make something new, but He wouldn’t use old ways to do it. He made it clear

Faith Markers

What are your markers of faith from 2018? Where did God teach you something about Himself or something about you? I’ve been thinking about those questions as I finish my first full New Year to New Year in Georgia. It’s been a big move, a start-over move, an all-things-new move. I’ve taken time to process what I’ve learned and found the lessons I need to apply as I move into a New Year. I am always caught in the tension between knowing and doing. I want this year to synchronize them better. I can’t point to one circumstance or moment of discovery. These are lessons that simmered and are just now coming to full boil. I share them as my accountability step, giving God full permission to

More of What Counts

The New Year, with its blank slate, is both intimidating and exhilarating. This year I am borrowing one of my favorite prayers from Philippians as my compass. I call it “The More of What Counts” prayer. And this is my prayer: that . . . love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:9-11 Here is the way I translate this prayer into my New Year’s goals: 1. More love. While this sounds easy, it isn’t simple.Pray for more love and God sends you a few of His hard-to-love cases to see how se