Devotional

A Church Without Walls

February 15, 2019

In 2001, the Church of Scotland looked around and decided that something was terribly wrong with the church in Scotland. It wasn't just numerical decline. There was something wrong about how people — both inside and outside — perceived …( read more )

Glad Rags

February 14, 2019

On Valentine's Day, like many others, I will wear something red. For a special date, a woman might wear that little black dress and pearls, or other "glad rags" (party clothes). In this world, fashions come and go. Sadly, modesty …( read more )

Shoe Buttons

February 13, 2019

Inside her roughly built pioneer cabin were treasures. Carefully folded deep inside an old trunk, my great-grandmother's homemade blue Victorian wedding dress rested. Beside it sat her high button black leather shoes and her Bible. I …( read more )

A Checklist To Live By

February 12, 2019

I love a good checklist! Checklists are so … functional. They are neat and orderly, systematic and defined, satisfying my mostly orderly mind and soul. Some days when I don't have a specific list of errands or chores to tackle, I could …( read more )

Oh, To Be Content

February 11, 2019

I carried them out by the armload — a seemingly endless task. Our move was complete — except for moving our clothes. Although my wife doesn't buy fancy clothes — nor buy them from expensive stores — she loves new outfits — or at …( read more )

The Quest

February 10, 2019

During the winter months in the north, it gets very dark. In the mornings, it stays dark until 9:30, sometimes 9:45, depending upon the weather. I hate the dark, so I have lots of large windows, as well as lights. I also work best in the …( read more )

The Mourning Dove

February 9, 2019

Titmice, chickadees, and mourning doves come to my feeders to eat the seed. They twitter, sing, and coo as they feed. The doves are a hoot as they strut with their head-bobbing stride. Their grey coats pale in comparison to bright male …( read more )

Living In The Hand Of God

February 8, 2019

When I was young, back in the Alaskan bush, we had to fly in and out of mining camps as my father and grandfather were prospectors. There were no year-round roads, due to seasonal melting of the permafrost. One time when the plane didn't …( read more )

Jewel's Worth

February 7, 2019

"What, no mirror?" Pride chided Jewel. Jewel loathed mirrors! Just seeing her reflection would stir within her the haunting voices that had plagued her since childhood: "We wish you were never born." "You deserve every bad thing that …( read more )

The Teaching Steps

February 6, 2019

In November of last year, I had the opportunity to visit the Holy Land, along with my daughter and several others from my church. It was an amazing experience to walk the same ancient paths that Jesus walked and to see a number of …( read more )

Engagement

February 5, 2019

Recently, Caroline managed to snag her engagement ring, caught in her coat. The central ruby was lost somewhere on the floor at college. Being well acquainted with my role as a husband, I took the ring off to the goldsmith to get it …( read more )

Best Before

February 4, 2019

Although I have almost completed fourscore and six years, some of you reading this will be even further along than I am on the runway of life. However, most of you will have more time before you take off and "fly away". When shopping at …( read more )

Drawing Near

February 3, 2019

Mind if I ask a question? How do people find the words to pray? I made a new friend just the other day. Her name is Cheryl. As I was sitting at the table eating breakfast, I decided I wanted to pray for her. For some reason, I wasn't sure …( read more )

Information Overload

February 2, 2019

Excessive information has become a plague. That occurred to me one day after receiving a ticket for unintentionally violating a "No Parking 2 to 6 A.M." bylaw. If there was a sign somewhere, I missed it amidst the plethora of signs on the …( read more )

The Sound Of Silence

February 1, 2019

Growing up in the 1960s, I learned to love "The Sound of Silence" by Simon and Garfunkel. And the sign said: "The words of the prophets Are written on the subway walls And tenement halls And whispered in the sound of silence." It was …( read more )

God's People

January 31, 2019

On October 27, 2018, a gunman entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, and killed eleven Jewish parishioners and wounded six other people. The news media quickly told us that this man was a hater of Jews and …( read more )

A Coat Of Paint

January 30, 2019

I recently wrote a devotional about our foster child in the Philippines. She's a principal now and is in charge of several schools. We keep in touch through Facebook, and she often posts pictures of the schools, which are usually in old …( read more )

Gifts Of Reality And Victory

January 29, 2019

One day when I was little, I found, as the surprise in my popcorn box, a tiny pair of scissors. But how horrible! They would not open. They just sat there in the palm of my hand, a senseless, one-piece thing of cast metal. I felt put-down …( read more )

Jesus Held My Hand

January 28, 2019

The following is my friend Joyce Augustson's story. I felt hopeless and alone in 1940s Arkansas, and I wasn't close to my mother. We weren't the poorest of poor, but many of the children I knew didn't have shoes and wore rags for …( read more )

Stirring Up The Gift

January 27, 2019

I sat in the ladder-back chair, wondering what I should do and feeling a bit useless. The day prior to our move had arrived, but my wife and I were already at our new residence unpacking boxes — at least, she was. With no Internet or …( read more )

The Watchers

January 26, 2019

Sophie is one of my mature dogs. She is a great help to me, especially on winter's icy paths in the corral, when I steady myself by holding on to her collar. There are times, however, when I don't want her in the corral with me and I …( read more )

Belonging To God

January 25, 2019

The greed of the tenants in Christ's parable from Mark 12:1-12 causes them to lose their rationality and humanity. They want to possess the cultivated land for themselves, so they conspire to rid their community of any outsiders. Their …( read more )

Huh?!

January 24, 2019

What is going on here? Do you ever have that feeling when watching the news on television? It seems that everyone is perplexed. Terrorism, natural disasters, weather phenomena, "fake news", and now, in the United States, government …( read more )

I Almost Missed Out

January 23, 2019

I almost missed the happiness that God has had for me in life, when I decided to end it at the age of 17. Miserable, lonely, and friendless, I could not see this changing in the future. What good is my life? I questioned, not realizing …( read more )

Checking The Source

January 22, 2019

Our Bible study group meets in the evening, down in a large basement room at our rural church. There is a row of small windows in the room, but in the depth of winter, the only light from outside is the twinkling of stars on a cloudless …( read more )

I Kept My Promise, Didn't I?

January 21, 2019

On Friday, June 14th, 2002, our grandson was born. He was premature and had many complications. He died two days later on Sunday, Father's Day. You can imagine the grief, heartache, and loss that we all faced, especially our son and …( read more )

The Long-Sword

January 20, 2019

A lot of healing has gone on over the years. Like many of my fellow Christians with a history, I rejoice in not being the person I once was. However, like the Incredible Hulk, I am not likeable when I am angry. Fortunately, my wife is …( read more )

Plenty For Me

January 19, 2019

The Bible has many references directing us to be hospitable. I was blessed to watch my parents practice this teaching on many occasions. One such occasion happened on a Sunday in 1943. A gentleman from Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with his …( read more )

Shields Which Protect

January 18, 2019

For about ten years, in both eyes, I have had glaucoma, a disease which increases pressure in the eye, and which, if left untreated, can cause total blindness. Mine was kept under control with eye drops at bedtime every day. However, a …( read more )

God's Jewels

January 17, 2019

My husband loved to give me jewellery. On our fifteenth anniversary, he surprised me with topaz earrings and necklace. I recently found the photo that we took at the lodge near Yosemite National Park. My head is proudly tilted to display …( read more )

Things Left Unsaid

January 16, 2019

A number of years ago, a close family member was diagnosed with cancer, and while at the beginning, the prognosis was good, as so often happens, the cancer came back with a vengeance, and she was given less than a year to live. She was a …( read more )

Murder At The Fish Shop

January 15, 2019

My late Scottish mother-in-law taught me this song. We always got a chuckle out of it when she sang it, especially because she had false teeth. Last night there was murder at the fish shop A wee dug stole a haddie bone A big dug tried tae …( read more )

Always Protected

January 14, 2019

Summertime presented great fun in the timberland. Sleeping outside was one of those activities. A day spent gathering twigs, branches, and boughs of broken fir and redwood trees produced our finished rounded, mounded shelter. Weary but …( read more )

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