“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.” (Luke 12:6-7) This is one of my favorite passages. Often in this world we can start to feel unimportant, insignificant. We may think our petty problems are too small for God to be concerned about in a world full of grave evils. If we suffered the abuse of neglect as children, we may think our human fathers couldn’t be bothered and didn’t watch out for us, so GodRead More →

“I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14) In this verse, we have Paul pressing on, running the spiritual long distance race to the finish line, seeking a prize–being called upward by God via King Jesus. Upward where? Heaven, communion with God, but in context, more than that–perfection. He puts his past failures and past successes behind him and strains forward to the next step of spiritual growth, bit by bit more like Jesus with every step of the way. In verse fifteen, he tells us this is a fit attitude for theRead More →

By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.” (1 John 3:16) What is love? John tells we learn what love is at the cross. Jesus and Paul both tell us that to love god and to love others fulfills all the laws and regulations handed down to us in the scriptures.  We love, John tells us elsewhere, because Christ first loved us. To love is to sacrifice and put others needs (not their wants) before our own. Scripture places the greatest burden here upon the leaders in our communities:Read More →

“Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness will find life, righteousness, and honor.” (Proverbs 21:21) So pursuing righteousness gets me righteousness and life. Pursuing kindness gets me honor? Interesting. The Church today has a hard time pursuing both righteousness and kindness. The devil fights us because either one  isn’t enough. We need both to find life righteousness, and honor. So all he has to do is keep us from being one or the other–and we can be more easily tricked into thinking we’re following Jesus properly in either half way state. The devil also likes to get us focused on the opposite problem than the one weRead More →

Dear Andrea, My husband and I have been married for 11 years. Currently we are separated. He has been abusive toward the kids for years–spanking hard enough to leave swollen red hand prints on them, occassionally shoving them into walls or threatening and screaming at them. He has been sexually abusive to me even though I was open to him in every way. In the last year he raped me at least 4 times (these times were obviously and legally rape). I feel pressure to stay in the marriage, but really I just want to remain separate from him and single the rest of myRead More →