Showing posts from October, 2011

Does God Still Speak Today?

Welcome to Real Life . Recently, someone asked me, “When people say God speaks to them, is that real?”  It’s an important question. Does God still speak today? Jesus said , “ People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” [1] God Speaks Series | Part 2 | Does God Still Speak Today? I am still learning that God is all about relationship. He loves me. He knows me. He wants me to love and know him as well. Communication is key in relationships. I talk to God in prayer. But, how does my Lord speak to me? How does he reach into my world and get my attention? God speaks in many ways as he pursues this love relationship with me. Often it feels as though I’m chasing after God. Actually, he’s the one chasing me. Francis Thompson (1859-1907) captures this in his poem, “The Hound of Heaven”: I fled Him, down the nights and down the days;    I fled Him, down the arches of the years; I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways    Of my own mind

Who Touched Me?

Welcome to Real Life .  Does God still speak today? This week, we begin a new series on hearing God’s voice. A woman reached out to Jesus for healing… and he reached back. God Speaks Series | Who Touched Me? | Mark 5:24-34 Normally Jesus reached out, touched the sick, and healed them. This time, someone reached out and touched Jesus.  He wanted to know who it was. “Who touched me?”   Jesus asked.  It was a woman. For twelve years she had suffered from continuous bleeding.  Desperate to be well, she pushed through the crowd behind Jesus and touched him.  She felt it immediately.  She had been healed. Jesus felt it as well. But, he had not seen her.  Now, the Son of God was asking her to reveal herself. Why? What did he want? Would he reprimand her? Would he undo the healing? Trembling with fear, she fell at his feet and confessed. Jesus had only tender words for her.  “ Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”  It was not

Abraham, He Wasn't Perfect

Welcome to Real Life . Last week, we talked about Abraham’s amazing faith in sacrificing Isaac. This week, we see that his faith wasn't always amazing. Abraham Series | Part 4 | Genesis 11-22 Abraham is an iconic figure.  He is a rock star of the faith to both Jews and Christians. [1]  His faith was so strong that he was even willing to sacrifice his only son, Isaac, to obey God.  In the last few weeks, we've highlighted Abraham’s faith victories. But, sometimes, his faith was weak: Abraham’s wife Sarah is gorgeous.  In Egypt , he’s afraid the Pharaoh will kill him to take Sarah.  Instead of protecting her, Abraham protects himself.  He asks Sarah to lie and say she’s his sister.  Fail.   Pharaoh takes Sarah.  God steps in and protects her. (Gen. 12:14-20) Above all, Abraham wants a child.  Tired of waiting on God, they use Sarah’s maid Hagar as a surrogate. Abraham sleeps with Hagar. Fail. Ishmael is born.  Later, trouble

When God Doesn't Make Sense

Welcome to Real Life .  Last week, Abram feared he’d never have a child.  This week, he faces the possibility of losing that child. Abraham Series | Part 3 | Genesis 22:1-18 After 25 years of waiting, Abraham’s son is born.  More years pass.  One day, out of the blue, God tests Abraham: “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the region of Moriah.  Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains…” What?  It seems random, even cruel and out of character for God to make this request.  He never requires a human sacrifice.  In fact, later God calls it detestable when parents sacrifice their children as burnt offerings to Molek. [1]   Why would he ask Abraham to sacrifice Isaac? The one thing Abraham desired was a child.  A “heart’s desire” can easily become an idol.  Was Isaac becoming more important to Abraham than God?   Abraham’s response to this test amazes me.  He doesn’t balk.  He doesn’t argue or complain.  He obeys ASAP,