Best Practices

In the Wilderness

The wilderness.  Scripturally speaking, the wilderness is a place we often seek to get through, rather than camp there.  Moses and the children of Israel wandered forty years there because they lacked the faith to enter the Promised Land (Numbers 14:31). Hagar ended up there twice, once when escaping Sarai’s abuse and once when she…
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Believe What He Says: Faith in the Midst of Chaos

I know. I’m late. Life blew up at the end of April, and the fallout has buried me. On the plus side, God is teaching me about faith. Here’s what I’m learning. 1. You either believe what God says—or not.  God either has sovereignty or not. My faith (or lack of it) will be reflected in…
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Sandpaper. Rough. Gritty. Scratchy. Applied willy-nilly, it scratches paint, mars plastic, and rips off the top layer of skin.  Correctly applied, it removes the rough spots leaving a smooth surface that’s ready for something new. Stain. Paint. A shiny coat of varnish. 2020 felt like sandpaper. Irritating. Annoying. Painful even.  I didn’t know I could…
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Patience and BBQ

Barbeque refers to an all-day cooking process resulting in smoky, juicy, fall-apart tender goodness. Yum. The key to good barbeque? Long. Slow. Heat. The same is true for patience.
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A Tale of Two Choices: Faith or Sight

The leather thongs bit his flesh. Lot stole a quick look from his one good eye, the other swollen shut from a soldier’s fist. His girls huddled near their mother, tears streaking through dust cast by the frenzied ride. Warriors strutted past, stroking the cheeks of his daughters. They smirked at him, laughing as his…
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Humble Pie: Help Yourself

Humble pie. It belongs next to my private chocolate stash because God says this is one dish best served—to myself. When someone serves humble pie to me, that’s humiliation. Not a tasty dish. Humility, however, is when I choose to be humble—and this pie hits God’s sweet spot.  “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand that…
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Choose Joy

“Be joyful always.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16 NIV Joy. My intersections with this word tend to occur around December when Christmas carols move joy to the forefront. The rest of the year, my melancholy personality fights to find it. However, a recent writing project brought some joyful discoveries: Joy is commanded. “Be joyful always” is a command,…
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You are the Light of the World, Yeah, You!

Light. The older I get, the more I need. Whether I’m driving to a new place at night, reading small print on the back of a can, or digging a splinter out of my foot, I need light for direction, clarity, and exposure.  In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus previewed His departure and the…
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How are Your Salt Levels?

Salt. It perks up my French fries, chlorinates my pool, and boosts my Gatorade when the Texas heat and humidity make my sweat glands run like faucets.  In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus affirmed the need for salt (and the Church) as flavor, fertilizer, and preservative. “You are the salt of the earth. But…
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The Gift(?) of COVID-19

COVID-19 has brought a host of challenges. Can God—has God—hidden treasure in the chaos? Isolation. Disruption. A shift to online everything. Financial and employment changes. Lots of family time for some or, in the case of our locked-down senior adults, no time at all. Treasure? Ecclesiastes 5:19 says, “when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the…
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