Tag: healing

Walking Through 1st Peter – Like a Straying Lamb

Walking Through 1st Peter – Like a Straying Lamb

Encouragment
Why do sheep stray?  It may not be the most cosmically important question to ask, but knowing why sheep stray tells us something about ourselves. The long and short of it is that sheep stray because they’re hungry. With head down they nibble, step, nibble, step without even looking at where they are going. If we’re not careful, we can do the same thing, allowing our appetite to determine our direction. Welcome to the 14th installment in our walk through 1st Peter. Previous articles are available on our website – lambchow.com. In today’s verses, Peter continues to comment on suffering for doing right. “For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His
Walking Through Philippians: Undercurrents

Walking Through Philippians: Undercurrents

Encouragment
Sometimes things aren’t as they seem. Starved Rock State Park is less than an hour from where we live. Its sandstone bluffs and grand view of the Illinois River has drawn folks for years. While many take the path to the top of the rocky bluff, some choose to walk beside the river. The Illinois River is like a series of lakes. Many folks spend time swimming, fishing, and playing up and down its course. But not at Starved Rock.  Next to the state park there is a flood-control dam. All along the shoreline are signs warning folks of the dangerous undertow caused by the dam. The surface of the water may look calm, peaceful, and inviting but there is danger underneath. The next few verses in our Walk Through Philippians almost seem like a side comment. Paul has concluded his main teaching
Broken Lives

Broken Lives

Encouragment
Say you’re driving down the highway and suddenly the check engine light comes on. Everything seems OK; it’s not sputtering and the gauges look good. So what’s that little light all about? Keeping an ear to the motor’s hum and an eye on the vital gauges you continue on to your destination. Since nothing seems wrong we’ll put up with that light, hoping that it goes away. But if it doesn’t go away we’ll eventually take our car to the shop to find out what that little light is trying to say. The mechanic will plug in a little gizmo that can read the fault code and tell us why the light is on. One time it was just a loose gas cap, who would have thought. Don’t you wish that we had a connector and gizmo like that for our lives? Especially for those times when we know something is wrong but we ca
Untouchable

Untouchable

Encouragment
It would have started with a spot. A small blemish on his arm, leg, torso, or face. We wouldn’t think much about it today, just a dry patch of skin. Perhaps the man, fearing the worse, tried to hide it in hopes that it would go away. Sooner or later though the man had to face his fears and see the priest as commanded in the Law of Moses. Everything was at stake, his ability to work, to worship, and to live under the same roof as his wife and children. The priest would have examined the spot, seeing the markers for leprosy specified in the Law the man would be quarantined for a specified time and reexamined. I can’t imagine the despair of the man. Examining the spot several times a day hoping and perhaps even believing that it was going away. The hopelessness that washed over him when t
Where Does It Hurt?

Where Does It Hurt?

Encouragment, Forgiveness
If you've spent any time around young children you've seen “the moment.” Something happens, a young child perhaps just beginning to walk or maybe a few years older and able to race around the yard, trips on a toy or falls off of a swing. There is this moment when they look to see how Mom or Dad are reacting to their tumble. It's almost like they’re asking “am I hurt or am I ok?” They can be perfectly fine but if someone reacts with concern they cry or if someone (seeing that they are not really hurt) reacts with laughter or celebration they smile and go about their business. They haven’t yet learned to interpret pain. Pain is a part of our everyday lives. It's like the red warning light on our dashboard telling us that something is wrong although we may not understand what that somethin
Three Stories: I was Only Joking

Three Stories: I was Only Joking

Series, Three Stories
There is a place for humor. Comedy, humor, and jokes not only evokes laughter but can also drive an idea past our natural defenses and into our hearts. A few days ago a third grader came up to me and asked, “What do dolphins eat with their peanut butter?”  “Um, I don’t know, strawberry jam?” I guessed. “Jellyfish,” he responded with a chuckle. Ok, its a groaner along the lines of Laffy Taffy. But humor made memorable that dolphins do eat jellyfish. Humor also has its dark side; when it is used to hurt, mock, and damage someone else. Consider: Bob stared at the Facebook post in horror. The post showed two shirtless men, one of them with his face, raising a glasses of beer behind a sign that read, “Coming Out Party.” The poster of the apparently altered photo was Carl, a classmate in the
Of Butterflies and Mini-vans

Of Butterflies and Mini-vans

Encouragment, Peace
A few days ago our granddaughter Mackenzie showed us a monarch butterfly while we were Facetiming. The story goes that their mini-van developed a strange electrical problem.  Michael had just unlocked the door to retrieve something after he closed the door the lights started blinking for no apparent reason.  He tried different things to make them stop but nothing worked.  A buddy from their church diagnosed the problem as a bad battery and offered to come over and change it.  They found the butterfly under the old battery and gave it to Mackenzie.  Here’s her explanation after overhearing parts and pieces of the conversation between Michael and their friend.  Mackenzie reported rather matter of factly that, “The van broke because the butterfly got under the battery and lost all of its juic
Experience, Not Empathy

Experience, Not Empathy

Archive
I have a document of springboard ideas for Blog articles that I read through when I’m not sure what to write about.  The idea list is made up of basic Bible concepts like grace, love, and faith; a few random thoughts like doing a series on the Lord’s Prayer; and a large list of emotional traumas like stress, bullied, rejected, and unwanted.  We’ve all had times of emotional trauma. The battle may be fresh and ongoing for you or perhaps its old scars that remind you of past pain. Either way Jesus offers hope. Back in the mid-nineties the phrase “I feel your pain” became associated with Bill Clinton.  At first it was an off the cuff remark uttered in frustration during an exchange with a heckler at a fundraiser.* As Clinton’s campaign developed it became an unofficial campaign motto. Howeve