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Grace is Grace

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When to Worry

Human nature is to worry. We worry about the economy; we worry about our health; we worry about our family; we worry about work, school, the neighborhood, and the government. There are so many things that can keep us up at night if we allow them to.   Human nature is to worry, but Jesus told us not to worry. I cannot think of a single problem I have ever resolved by worrying about it. Can you? I am powerless, with so many things out of my control, but the Lord is capable of doing anything. Rather than worry, we should trust Him to handle our problems.    Jesus used ravens and lilies as examples of things that do not worry, and yet their needs are met. In Luke 12:24 He said, “Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds!”   Then in verse 27 He added, “Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed l

Snake Bite

  I absolutely hate snakes. In my opinion, the only good snake is a dead snake. But pastor and author Greg Laurie spoke of how he was obsessed with snakes when he was younger, even keeping multiple snakes as pets in his room. He came to know a man who collected venomous snakes, including the incredibly lethal tiger snake. This man was actually bitten by the tiger snake and lived to tell about it.    Although it was a close call, he credited his survival with the fact that he gave himself daily injections of tiger snake serum, and effectively developed an immunity to its venom. Rather than realizing how fortunate he was to still be alive, this man became invincible in his own mind. He became careless, even letting all of his deadly snakes roam freely in his house. One day he was bitten in the leg by one of his cobras, was subsequently hospitalized, and died.    It’s a tragic story, but an ending you could probably predict halfway through reading. It reminds me of the expression, “If you

Infinite Abyss

  There is a popular phrase among Christians that says each person has a “God-shaped void” in their lives. This is speaking of the natural man, of course. The Bible teaches that we are born with a sin nature and are separated from God as a result.    The phrase is traced back to Blaise Pascal, a French inventor and philosopher of the 1600s. But rather than a God-shaped void (or vacuum as some say), Pascal actually wrote of an infinite abyss. In his posthumous work defending his faith   he wrote these words:   “What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace? This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself.”   According to Pascal, we each are bor

God is Sovereign

Christians should be able to rest easy knowing that God is sovereign. According to the dictionary, to be sovereign means to be “supreme in rank or authority,” and God certainly is that. The word   reign  is right there in the word—as our Sovereign God, He reigns supreme over the universe He created.     The word sovereign does not appear in the Bible, but Isaiah 45:5-7 says, “I am the LORD, and there is no other, besides me there is no God; I equip you, though you do not know me, that people may know, from the rising of the sun and from the west, that there is none besides me; I am the LORD, and there is no other. I form light and create darkness; I make well-being and create calamity; I am the LORD, who does all these things.”   That sounds like sovereignty to me.   God does whatever He wants. He consults no one; He seeks advice from no one; He answers to no one. Psalm 115:3 tells us, “Our God is in the heavens;  He does all that he pleases .”   We might be tempted to think that we ar

Cast Down Soul

  The 23 rd  Psalm is a favorite for many people. It is memorized and recited, and often displayed and framed around church buildings and homes. I want to focus for a minute on the first line of the third verse—“He restores me soul.”    When we hear the word soul, we might think of the part of us that goes on to be with the Lord when we pass away, and in that regard, having our souls restored doesn’t really make sense. However, that part that goes to be with the Lord is actually our spirit, while our soul is our personality, that invisible part of us that makes us who we are (our soul remains with our spirit, so we will keep our uniqueness for eternity).    So why would our soul need to be restored? Well, sometimes we are cast down. David wrote Psalm 23, but he also wrote Psalm 42, where he asks, “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?”    In the book  A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23,  Phillip Keller explains being “cast down,” writing, “That is an Old Eng

Truth is a Person

I frequently write on the topic of truth because the concept of absolutes has been under attack in our country for several years. Many of our social and cultural problems stem from our rejection of truth. For example, I read last week that a man paid $20,000 to have himself turned into a border collie; through multiple surgeries, he is now the spitting image of Lassie (only much larger). How did we arrive here?   When we say there are no absolutes, a grown man named Dylan can say he is a six-year-old girl, and we have to respect that because that is “his truth.” When a male athlete wants to compete against females, he only needs to say his pronouns are she/her, and then he gets a gold medal.    If a man can be a woman, or a man can be an adolescent girl, then he can also be a dog. When truth goes out the window, we open the door for all types of lunacy. This is why the devil works so hard to undermine truth. The first two times we see him speak in Scripture, he asks Eve, “Did God actua