Everybody loves Jeremiah 29:11: “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you, and not harm you. To give you a future and a hope.”

We eat that stuff up like delicious, delicious candy.

Or what about “I can do all things through Christ Who strengthens me?”

That’s a good one, too!

“Taste and see that the Lord is good, and blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him.” That’s a great one, which has adorned many a pillow down through the years.

How about “God is faithful in that, with every temptation, He provides a way of escape that you may be able to bear it?”
That’s a good one! And it’s probably the genesis of the oft-quoted (but less than biblical idea) that “God never gives us more than we can bear.”

Poppycock, I say! Tis pure balderdash!

Is this the same God Who says “In this world you will have tribulation?” Is it the same God that admonishes us to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling?” Is is the same God Who promises us “they shall hate you because they first hated Me?”

When the last time you saw that cross-stitched anywhere?

Or taught about in your church for that matter?

What about the epistle of First Peter, where we’re told “after you shall have suffered, God will?” We kind of gloss over that don’t we? Nobody wants to suffer, endure pain, or hardship.

But God promises it.

We shall be delivered up, the world shall hate us. Some of us will even die for our faith–be martyred.

Cheery thoughts, I know. These are the not so precious promises of God. The ones we don’t like think about.

Here’s another one: “Whether we live, or die, it is for Christ.” And “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.” Fact is, nobody wants to die. But sooner, or later, we all do. There’s no avoiding it. Whether by “famine, or nakedness, or sword, or peril” nothing is able to separate us from his love. Not Ebola, or ISIS.

OR ANY OTHER THING ANYWHERE.

Here’s a promise you can stake your life (and afterlife) upon:

“Fear not him [ISIS, disease, the devil] who can destroy the body, but Him Who can destroy the soul [God].”

What’s your favorite not-so-precious promise of God?


Prayer is like working out; the muscle it exercises is faith. Like going to the gym, or spin class–or anything, really–it’s a discipline we develop. And it can only be developed in the doing.

Thinking about doing a thing (like prayer) is very much different from actually doing that thing. I could, for instance, stare at the muscle mags at the bookstore all day, and not put on any new muscle. The difference lays between the very great gulf betwixt intention and action. The gentleman in the top photo didn’t lift all the weight upon the back of his intentions; no, he put in the work. He trained.


In other words, intending to pray is akin to intending to exercise: not worth a hill of beans. Prayer is the active exercise of our belief, our communion with the unseen. It’d where the rubber of life meets the road of faith. It’s part and parcel of our spiritual disciplines. It’s part of our training. Remember the verse from Hebrews? “He that comes to God must first believe that He is, and that He is the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.”

Prayer–like exercise, like writing, like the arts, like honest work, requires this: diligence.

Have you prayed today? If not, when’s the last time you did?

There’s no time like the present. Don’t put it off anymore. Exercise your faith (and not just your body).

I have been mulling this one over, unsure of how to proceed.

But this is the most important blog post you’ll ever read.

Why do I say that? Is it bald hubris, or mere temerity?

No, rather it’s all about life, death, and eternity.

Specifically:

Where will you spend yours–when this life is done, and you’ve had your fun–do you just go into the ground to become

The diet of worms?

Or is there something more?

And if there is, what are you doing about it now? What are you waiting for? You see, what I believe is that there is a life beyond the one we live day-to-day in fleshly decay.

One which goes on forever, that outlasts these born-to-die frames.

And that life?

That life has a name:

Jesus.

Whoever you are, wherever you’re at, call out to Him today.

Don’t delay.

This has been the most important blog post you’ll ever read.

Do you use an iPhone, an Android-based phone, or something else? If so, what are your reasons for picking one platform over another? Do you like the tight integration of hardware and software in IPhone land, or do you prefer the flexibility and themeability of Android? Are you diehard Apple fanboy/girl, or have you sold your soul to Google?

Or do you maybe still use a flip phone?

Sound off below on what you like, and why you like it. Peace out.

Folks, if you’ve seen one Liam Neeson movie you’ve seen them all. Seriously. They’re all Taken. If you remember that film, Neeson’s character, Brian Mills, had a particular set of skills. He will find you, and he will kill you.

We get it.

I mean going all the way back to one of his first big screen appearances in Excalibur, it’s clear Neeson was Taken With Arthur. In the Dead Pool, someone has Taken His Life. Darkman? They’ve Taken Mah Face. Rob Roy? Taken My Honor. Schindler’s List? He was Taken With the Jews. Stars Wars, Episode 1: the Phantom Menace? Taken By Maul. Non-Stop? Taken On A Plane.

I could go on, but as you can see: everything Neeson has done is Taken.

Your turn.