Morning Musing: Hebrews 11:13-16

“These all died in faith, although they had not received the things that were promised. But they saw them from a distance, greeted them, and confessed that they were foreigners and temporary residents on the earth. Now those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they were thinking about where they came from, they would have had an opportunity to return. But they now desire a better place – a heavenly one. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

I enjoy traveling. We don’t do it often, but there’s just something exciting about going somewhere, especially somewhere new. Still, as much fun as it may be, the whole time I’m gone, I am surpassingly aware of one very important fact: I’m not at home. As a result, even though I will adapt some to whatever my current environment may be, I am only ever going to go so far. The reason for this is simple: I’m not staying long. I will eventually return home. For all the ways I may adapt, then, I don’t want to make myself less fit for home by the effort, so I will only ever go so far. Otherwise, I will intentionally stick out as I live with home in mind. This is, of course, a metaphor for our life in Christ. Let’s talk about it.

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Morning Musing: Psalms 56:3-4

“When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Do you ever remember feeling invincible? I remember being at one of my sister’s softball games when we were growing up. I wasn’t actually watching the game, but the softball complex she played at was in a wonderfully wooded area with several of the big limestone boulders that are so common to that part of the country, and which make fantastic natural playgrounds. On this particular day, I was jumping from the top of one boulder to the other – in flip-flops, no less – and landing my jumps perfectly every single time. I felt like I could do anything on that day. But while those kinds of experiences are fun, if we’re being honest, they tend to be the exception to the rule. And the rule is that on most days we not only don’t feel invincible, we feel downright defeated. We carry a ton of fear of what the day might bring and who might be bringing it. As normal as that kind of feeling is, though, it’s not how life was designed to be lived. Let’s talk this morning about how to get rid of fear and live with the kind of confidence a ten-year-old boy lost in a fantasy playground has in spades.

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Morning Musing: Revelation 20:15

“And anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.”‬‬ (CSB – Read the chapter

Preachers of old were famous for their sermons filled with “hellfire and brimstone.” Some, like George Whitfield, were famous (infamous?) for offering their audiences graphic descriptions of Hell that were so compelling people would give their lives to Christ then and there on the spot just to avoid even the remotest possibility of such a fate. Today, however, the idea of a fiery Hell waiting for all those who refuse to have faith in Christ not only isn’t very popular, for many it is an active impediment to their accepting the existence of God in the first place. So then, what do we do with verses like this one?

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Digging in Deeper: John 3:3

“Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.'”  (ESV – Read the chapter)

One of my favorite ideas about God (and one I think is entirely true) comes from G.K. Chesterton in his book, Orthodoxy.  Here it is:

Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged.  They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead.  For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony.  But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony.  It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon.  It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daises alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them.  It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.

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Morning Musings: Psalms 90:12

“So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.”  (ESV – read the chapter)

One of the things that best helps people put life and the things that are in it in the proper perspective is being near the end of it.  When someone receives a terminal diagnosis, all of a sudden life rushes into this incredible clarity.  He is able to recognize which things are most important and which are not, and he orders them properly.   Read the rest…