I received a shocking phone call from an old friend one Christmas Eve several years ago (to protect his identity I’ll call him Doug). I had not talked to Doug since junior high school, and he was drunk, depressed, and suicidal. He lived far away from me in Arizona and had found my contact information … More Speak life!
When my youngest daughter Sammy became a senior in High School, I asked her how I could pray for her during that entire year. When she asked me to pray that she would improve her relationship with God, I suddenly realized I needed to be more intentional in my spiritual leadership in her life. As … More Pray for your kids!
You never know when your last communication will be with anyone, including your children. Children can die from many causes, but it is always shocking when it happens. I remember the shock and heartache I felt for Christian singer Steven Curtis Chapman and his family when I heard about their little five year old girl … More Last phone call!
How amazing that God gives many of us the opportunity, during our short time on Earth, to get extremely close to another human being in the context of a lifetime covenant marriage! Such a relationship is set apart for deep intimacy in every area—physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. The problem comes when we think that … More God’s gift to me!
Several years ago, I heard a true story about an old man who once toured a Wycliffe Bible Translators center in North Carolina. He listened to the tour guide talk about the Bibleless peoples of the world, describing how translators were giving their lives to translate God’s Word into the heart language of these peoples. … More I’m not retired–just redeployed!
My father-in-law died from a stroke a few years ago. He lived in Ontario, Canada, and we were unable to go see him before he passed away. I feel regret when I think about my interactions with him after I married his daughter. He was a gruff man and was hard to talk to. He … More Don’t let it slip by!
During college, I took the opportunity to leave no room for regrets when saying goodbye to a missionary woman named Carolyn, with whom I had grown very close during my senior year of college. She and her family were returning to the DR Congo to continue their missionary service. I had dated her daughter for … More No regret goodbyes!
When I lived in the DR Congo, my Congolese brothers and sisters taught me the importance of gratefulness by how they prayed every morning. In the Swahili language, they prayed, “Asante Mungu sababu niliamuka,” which means, “Thank you, God, that I woke up.” Sometimes they added another sentence: “Usiku jana nililala kama wafu, halafu leo … More Thank you God I woke up!
There are, of course, many different kinds of suffering in life. Some suffering comes as a direct consequence of our own sinful choices or other people’s sinful choices. Other suffering comes directly from Satan and his demons or indirectly, through people used as Satan’s pawns. Still other suffering is a result of God’s discipline, as … More He could have walked away
Several years ago one of my university faculty colleagues was looking through his mail. He had just received a catalogue featuring religious jewelry. As he flipped through the catalogue, he started making fun of all the different kinds of crosses, asking me, “Hey, Mike—would you like a sterling silver cross, a gold-plated one, or maybe … More Jewelry or Torture?