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don’t judge?

Do not judge others” may be the most popular verse in the world. It’s the one phrase from the Bible that everyone seems to know—and often misapply. A former politician …

tested

Photo by Speleolog

tested

As a kid, I enjoyed helping my mom in the kitchen— especially when it came time for our holiday baking. One tool that fascinated me was the sifter. My mom …

where’s God?

On the homepage of a website I discovered recently, all the global natural disasters for the current year are graphically presented on a world map. Icons reveal landslides, earthquakes, wildfires, tornadoes, floods, erupting volcanoes, windstorms, and more. It’s sobering to see the number of natural disasters that affect people around the globe!

the rules of grief

Photo by sniktaWP

the rules of grief

Two years ago, I held my father’s hand as he drew his last breath. Since then, as I’ve struggled to figure out what a world without Dad looks like, I’ve learned and relearned a few things about grieving.

remaining true

Photo by zoosee

remaining true

A young man wavered between two worlds. Would he roll with the gangs in his neighborhood, or walk with Christ? Although his father struggled with addiction and his mother suffered …

eyes for fireflies

Just 5 and 7 years old, Liam and Elias eagerly awaited darkness and a fireworks display. Dancing with anticipation in a meadow, they pacified their impatience by marveling at the pyrotechnic sideshows of fellow holiday celebrants. Cherry bombs, sparklers, Roman candles, and fireworks of dubious legality violated the dusk.

search for significance

Photo by K. J. Reilly

search for significance

I have to admit, with some shame, that I’ve Googled my own name. I know, I know—it’s immature and narcissistic. I think I—and others like me—do this because we want some living proof that we’re significant and important in some way.

how to be strong

Unfinished business. Too much to do.

named

Photo by themakingspot

named

After telling a Bible story, the teacher asked his Sunday school class, “What’s the name of the beggar?” Six-year-old Tommy confidently shouted, “Lazarus!” The teacher then asked another question: “What is the name of the other man?” Another student shouted, “Rich man!”

a heavenly lineage

Photo by kelatr

a heavenly lineage

Simon’s mother was 18 when she fell in love with a man who showered her with the affection she lacked at home. Their romantic tryst was short-lived, however, and he quickly returned to his wife and family when he discovered that she was pregnant.

peace in a ravaged world

Amid the horrific stories of shootings in schools, the news in August 2013 of Antoinette Tuff’s heroism was a beautiful exception. Antoinette, on staff at an elementary school, confronted 20-year-old Michael Hill when he entered the school building carrying weapons, including an assault rifle. “I just started talking to him,” …

a stone’s throw

Photo by Daniëlle Bos

a stone’s throw

The teachers of the law stormed into the temple and interrupted Jesus’ teaching by thrusting a woman in front of the crowd. They said to Him, “This woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?” (John 8:4-5).

not mine

My husband and I believe that the most influential people in a child’s life are his or her parents. But we wonder at times if our parenting decisions are having the impact we hoped for. Now that our kids are adolescents, friendships no longer consist of playing with toys and …

reverent fear

Photo by sosidesc

reverent fear

The ocean was churning. Massive waves were causing the huge vessel to list from side to side. As I stood and looked out a window, I was amazed at the power and fury of the storm. The beating of the raindrops on the metal deck matched the rapid beating of my heart as the ship was buffeted by fierce elements.

who sinned?

God has told me why your skin cancer hasn’t been healed,” the woman said to my friend. Really? he thought. Having suffered through two failed operations to remove the cancer from his face, my friend was desperate for a reason why. “God has told me it’s one of three things,”…