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How Deep the Father’s Love is for You

How Deep the Father’s Love is for You

The scent of fresh honeysuckle filled my nose, touching my soul with joy and thankfulness. Kneeling next to my son, I said, “Hey Theo, can you smell the honeysuckle?” All at once, he bent his knees, stuck his nose to the white petals, and sniffed as hard as he could. Tears glistened in my eyes and I kissed his nearly bald head and said, “I love you, Bug.” Giggling, he ran across the yard to keep exploring.

I didn’t desire nor did I expect an “I love you mama” in return—he has few words to offer right now and the ones in that phrase aren’t among them. Still, I probably declare that I love him at least twenty times each day. My love for that boy is deep and abiding. I can’t help but want him to know how very loved he is.

But I know there’s a greater love than a parent’s love for their child.…

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Turn Over the Tables in my Heart, Lord

Turn Over the Tables in my Heart, Lord

What’s on your dining table right now? Is it hidden under all kinds of random stuff like mine is? Our dining table often becomes a catch-all table. At dinner, my poor husband tries to eat without knocking over the boxes with his elbow. My son launches his food, hitting the papers in the middle. Bills go missing under the jacket and where on earth did my pen go? This table is made for feasting, but often it’s too cluttered for its intended use.

Temples Cluttered with Sin

Our hearts are often like my table—made to feast on the Lord, yet cluttered with sin. God created us to worship him, but we pile on the tables of our hearts things like envy, bitterness, unforgiveness, lust, greed. We ignore them, trying to pretend they aren’t there because dealing with them seems too overwhelming. Within our bodies resides the Holy Spirit, and yet we forget our bodies are his temple (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). …

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The Trend of Deconstructing from Reformed Theology

The Trend of Deconstructing from Reformed Theology

In the ripple effects of the increasingly popular trend of “deconstruction,” we find a deconstruction within a deconstruction. Are you confused yet? Me too. What I’m referring to is those who are deconstructing from reformed theology. They’re sick of the arrogance and the biting comments and the aggressive twitter fights (Who isn’t?). So they decide it’s just not for them. In fact, it’s better to have no labels, no boxes, no theological camps in which we place ourselves. 

The problem is not that people are shifting their views on reformed theology. We don’t have to agree with the doctrines of grace or covenant theology to be Bible-believing Christians who love Jesus. The problem is that often in our fight against something that’s wrong, we tend to do the very thing we’re pushing against.

A New Enlightenment

I recently skimmed the comments on a post about leaving reformed theology and was taken aback.…

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Unknowns are a Gift

Unknowns are a Gift

I’m not great at a lot of things, but some people say I’m pretty good at planning. I planned my own wedding, I’ve planned over twenty bridal and baby showers. I plan game nights, birthday parties, brunches, and teas. I’m also good at planning out my life. In my head I plan when and where we will move, how many children we hope to have, family vacations, dates, anniversaries—so many things to plan! The problem is, my plans don’t always align with God’s plans (Who knew?!). 

Like the time I became an ex-fiance at the age I’d planned to marry. Or the many times I’ve had to cancel plans due to a flare-up of my chronic stomach pain. Or like this week, when we discovered three (benign) tumors on my spine in the middle of multiple major life decisions. My plans are shifting. 

Honestly, I’m okay with that. I see evidence all around me of how God’s plans are abundantly better than anything I could dream up.…

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Spring’s Gospel Presentation

Spring’s Gospel Presentation

Here in Ohio, we’re experiencing what we like to call “fool’s Spring.” It’s where the weather suddenly goes from wintery mix to blue skies. The warmth upon your face from the sun above might trick a fool into thinking it’s the real deal only to crush your dreams in a few days when the temperature drops again. It’s a taste of Spring, anyway, and I’m not complaining. 

It stirs my mind to ponder the little “tastes” of what heaven will be like, where flowers never fade and life reigns eternally. We see glimpses of it now in the revival of dead grass and baby bunnies due to frolic in our yard in the coming weeks. I can’t help but hear the song of redemption in the melody of the birds. New branches begin to form on desolate rose bushes and all I can think of is the power of the gospel, calling dead sinners to new life in Christ.…

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Bow Before the Omnipotent God

Bow Before the Omnipotent God

A couple of years ago I bought a bag of zinnia seed mix for dummies on a whim. You just sprinkle it on the soil, water, and watch. Within a few weeks, my own cut-flower garden emerged, full of bright oranges, pinks, and reds. Excited by the results, I decided I’d buy the same mix the next spring. I followed the instructions and waited…and waited…and waited. Nothing. Not a single sprout from the ground. “What’s summer without zinnias?” I said to a friend. So I tried again. Nope. Still not right. Frustrated, I bought a packet of seeds and tossed them on the flower(less) bed and prayed for at least a few blooms. 

I did get a few beauties to behold in my flower garden that year, but I imagine I’d have gotten many more if I could speak them into existence like God created the world by the power of his word.…

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