Friday, June 29, 2012

Living Hope

My comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life. - Psalm 119:50

Life can throw some overwhelming problems at a parent. Lately, I’ve learned a couple of truths that bring strong confidence.

Our church’s recent Living Hope sermon series focused on 1 Peter. The pastors pointed us to the living hope we have in Jesus. 1 Peter 1:13 instructs, “Therefore, preparing your minds for action… set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” Rather than shrinking fearfully into our corner, we can believe that Jesus’ resurrection power will help us overcome, giving wisdom and direction. And in the end, we will receive grace.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Holiness and Efficiency

As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do. – 1 Peter 1:14-15

We can’t pursue two goals, spiritually. We can’t aim for holiness and efficiency. If we aim for holiness we reap, as a side effect, eternal efficiency – the kind that really packs a punch. If we aim for efficiency, we reap neither lasting efficiency nor holiness.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Message of the Whale

They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; these see the works of the Lord, and his wonders in the deep. Psalm 107:22-24

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. Isaiah 43:2

Sometimes you need a break, and a break appears. My kids and I are still wrestling down a difficult school year, long past burnout. Yesterday, Captain Mike Sack and marine biologist Dorris Welch invited the Santa Cruz Sentinel’s Media Lab bloggers on a whale watching excursion with Sanctuary Cruises. Woohoo! When you get a break like this, you take it; so today found us on the Bay, school work neglected.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Scared Much?

Who is among you that fears the Lord, that obeys the voice of His servant, that walks in darkness and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God. – Isaiah 50:10

For a long time after becoming a single mom, I lived in fear. I never knew what would hit us next, and I worried for my children. I read scary statistics about children of divorce, and I could not discern a clear path to safety.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Within Range

Your adversary… prowls around… seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. – 1 Peter 5:8-9

When we experience trials that differentiate us from people in more peaceful life seasons, we’re susceptible to a lie. We begin to see ourselves as anomalies, as though something about us is weird and wrong and different. We might even fear that we are not within the normal range of being human. These thoughts tempt us to isolate, which is precisely the least helpful choice.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Committing the Future to God

For by grace you have been saved through faith…. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
Ephesians 2:8, 10

I should figure out a working school schedule.

I must find time to listen to my son!

I have to position my kids for college.

These statements a commitment make, but they do not a commitment keep. They spring from a mind burdened with anxiety about the results, which are out of our control. If we’re honest, they often set us up to fail. It seems the more we try, the harder we fall.