Thoughts

Fearless Dependence: A Lesson From Lilies

For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them.  Instead, seek his kingdom… Read More

Charles Spurgeon

I’ve recently started reading Spurgeon.  There is no planned schedule for my reading, but I try to read the Morning and Evening Spurgeon devotionals put out by HeartLight and sermons (occasionally)… Read More

Early Mornings… Or One Reason Why Preaching the Gospel to Yourself is So Important

I honestly think that I am a morning person.  There is something I enjoy about being awake before others and listening to the secrets of the morning as they are chased away with the darkness by the rising sun.  Many mornings, however, I wake up mumbling at my alarm clock… Read More

John Newton

God’s people have no assurances that the dark experiences of life will be held at bay… Read More

Faithful Sayings: Charles Spurgeon

Treasure up these faithful sayings. Let them be the guides of our life, our comfort, and our instruction… Read More

“Mr. Spurgeon Strikes Again”… Twice

God is so good to continue blessing me in my lunch readings.  I have my lunch break at a school where I have the room to myself and the internet, so I can eat and read without interruption… Read More

Lamentations 3:24 — Spurgeon

It is not “The Lord is partly my portion,” nor “The Lord is in my portion”; but he himself makes up the sum total of my soul’s inheritance. Within the circumference of that circle lies all that we possess or desire. The Lord is my portion… Read More

Letter to a Sheep: Part One

In Bible study we have been reading the book of John.  I have been struck with how wonderful it is to read the words that Jesus said, to read what he says about himself and what he says about the love he has for his own… Read More

Letter to a Sheep: Part Two

Another promise to the sheep is eternal life.  Indeed, the sheep cling to this promise for hope in earth’s trials… Read More

Here Is Love: Christmas 2010

I was browsing through the Christmas ornaments at Hobby Lobby earlier this month when I saw an ornament that struck my eye.  Even though it wasn’t a figurine from the manger scene, the cross-shape wasn’t too out of place.  There were several other cross-themed ornaments.  No, it was the message on the ornament that caught my eye… Read More

As I Was Unpacking

Tonight, while I was going through a box of papers, I came across a sheet of paper from a Graduate Intervarsity Women’s prayer meeting this past Spring.  The scripture and prayer written on this paper is a wonderful reminder of the things that every Christian has in Christ… Read More

New Year

From Valley of Vision (a book of Puritan Prayers)… Read More

After Christmas

Following family tradition, most of the Christmas tree ornaments are gifts from other people, or tokens to remember the year.  I thought about the people over the years who’d given me the ornaments and remembered the events and memories evoked by them… Read More

Whether for Correction or for his land or for love

God is always good – but sometimes God also sends life events that help me believe more deeply what I say I already know.  One such event was three years ago today…Read More

Valentine’s Day 2011 — Spurgeon on the Father’s Love

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us.” Consider who we were, and what we feel ourselves to be even now when corruption is powerful in us, and you will wonder at our adoption… Read More

Promises and Fulfillment: The Old Covenant Part One

Even though the whole Old Testament — Old Covenant — points to the coming of Christ as the Redeemer, we looked mostly at the promises concerning the Messiah as a brief overview of the Old Testament… Read More

Promises and Fulfillment: The Old Covenant Part Two

After looking at prophecies about Jesus from Moses, we looked at some (but by no means even close to all) of the other prophecies in the Old Testament… Read More

Promises and Fulfillment: The New Covenant

This is the final post in the series we covered in Bible Study last month.  After looking at the Old Testament, we spent a week looking at the New Testament and how it related with the Old Testament.  First, we looked at two passages predicting the coming of the New Covenant, particularly Jeremiah 31:31-34.  Next we looked at the idea that the New Testament is expected if we believe the Messiah has come… Read More

He Still Leads Me

I was traveling yesterday, so I’m a little behind on my blog-reading.  Today, however, I had some spare time between conference sessions and read this beautiful post from GirlTalk that I wanted to share here… Read More

A Day of Remembering: Good Friday

There are many days set aside on the U.S. calendar as days of remembering.  We remember to give thanks in November.  We remember our independence.  We remember 9/11.  We remember to honor our Veterans.  We remember our Grandparents.  We remember our parents.  On our personal calendars, we remember our birthdays and the birthdays of those close to us… Read More

That Very Day

The amazing grace of Easter… Read More

Someone to Share With

Once there was a little girl who was loved by her mom and dad.  The three of them lived happily together, laughing and loving.  After two and a half years, a brother came along, and the three became four…. Read More

One Year Down, Or, the Sanctifying Work of Teaching

Last May, I had just finished my degree and was feverishly sending out job applications (while trying to catch up on sleep).  Little did I know that I would end up, a year later, two states and one time zone away… already missing the 24 kids who call me their teacher… Read More

The Church’s One Foundation

Summer weddings are getting their start today… at least in my circle of friends.  Today marks the start of two marriages and celebrates the anniversary of another… Read More

Price Paid

Today, citizens here in America and American citizens around the world are celebrating their freedom as a country.   A freedom that was attained at a high price of hundreds of men we will never be able to thank.   A freedom that is sustained at that same high price by men and women who have pledged to fight for those freedoms.  … Read More

Summer Reading List — 2011

Lewis Carroll, Elizabeth Elliot, The Bible, Charles Spurgeon… Read More

Firm in Faith

I love when readings from two different sources on two different days speak in unison.  Last night during Bible study, we read Isaiah 7:9.  Today, the morning devotional (though on a different verse) from Spurgeon’s Morning & Evening series continued the discussion we had last night. “If you are not firm in faith, you will not be firm at all.” … Read More

Psalm 34:1

“Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” If  heart and mouth were so full of praise to God… Read More

Decoupaging and the Ministry of Music

This is why the great pianist always plays with so much emotion the piece that holy memories have cause him to name “The Last Hope” and why, in replying to his fair questioner he called it his “Evening Prayer”… Read More

Psalm 34:2-3

Not a boast in my own actions, nor in my relationships, nor my thoughts.  I cannot take a breath except that the LORD gives it.  I make a plan, but cannot see it through unless the LORD wills it… Read More

Psalm 34:4-7

The LORD’s answer was and is deliverance because in Him there is no change.  David knew this and rejoiced in it.  Fear has no strength and can hold no prisoners when the LORD delivers… Read More

Psalm 34:8

In all of His works, the LORD shows Himself to be good.  Always.  Without fail.  But those who do not run to Him, who do not taste, who do not seek will only look from a distance and say “my way is disregarded by him; he is not good.”…Read More

Psalm 34:9-14

After reading about the LORD’s goodness, shelter, and communion with mankind, it may seem strange that the next sentence from the psalmist is to fear the LORD. Why would David fear Him in whom he had found such refuge? … Read More

Abide with Me

Henry F. Lyte, the man who wrote this hymn faithfully led a small church for over 20 years when his failing health forced him to take an early retirement.  September 4, 1847 marked his last sermon to his congregation.  During his sermon, Lyte is reported to have said his desire was to “induce you to prepare for the solemn hour which must come to all by a timely appreciation and dependence on the death of Christ.” … Read More

Psalm 34:15

The righteous are those who have clung to Christ for forgiveness, who by faith are credited as righteous, as Abraham was. So, never think that the LORD saves and then forgets… Read More

Psalm 34:16

This verse is set as a stark contrast in the midst of verses showing God’s care for His own.  Whereas the LORD watches over the righteous to deliver and preserve them, the LORD watches over the wicked to destroy them with His judgment… Read More

Psalm 34:17-18

These verses lead me to ask myself, “Self, when do you cry for help? At night when fears and fatigue start their vicious attack?  In the morning when the start of a new day seems too much… Read More

Saturday Song: Grace by Laura Story

This song is one of my all-time favorites.  It is powerful to me on two fronts.  First it echoes the promises found in the Bible concerning God’s generosity with His grace.  There is never a time that a child of His has come asking for it that He has not freely given it… Read More

Saturday Song: Your Grace Still Amazes Me

Whatever grief or joy the heart may feel, whatever feelings of defeat or triumph, the one saved by God can say, “This is my God who has removed my sin from me.  This is my God who remembers me to show me mercy.”… Read More

Psalm 34:19-22

It is no coincidence that this Psalm about fighting fear ends with a proclamation of the Gospel… Read More

Focus on Thy Redeemer

“I will help thee;” lay a stress on that word. If you read it so, there is one blow at your unbelief. “I will help thee,” saith the Redeemer. “Others may not, but I have loved thee with an everlasting love, and by the bands of my lovingkindness have I drawn thee. ‘I will help thee, though the earth forsake thee; though thy father and thy mother forsake thee, I will take thee up. Wilt thou doubt me? I have proved my love to thee. … Read More

Waiting…

One of the themes that has resurfaced during our study in the first part of Isaiah is that of waiting.  In chapter 8, Isaiah writes, “I will wait for the LORD, who is hiding his face from the house of Jacob, and I will hope in him.”… Read More

Saturday(ish) Song: Do Everything by Steven Curtis Chapman

And still it is the same for them all: any good work done to the glory of God does not fail to please Him.  And no work is too mundane, too unimportant, or too unseen that He cannot use it…. Read More

We Give Thanks

Thou art the blessed God, happy in Thyself, source of happiness in Thy creatures, my maker, benefactor, proprietor, upholder. Thou hast produced and sustained me, supported and indulged me, saved and kept me; Thou art in every situation able to meet my needs and miseries. …Read More

Saturday Song: Sweet Hour of Prayer

In prayer all my worldly cares, fears, anxieties disappear, and are of as little significance as a puff of wind…. Read More

Won by Waiting: a thought on suffering

“But ‘just living on’ is rather a serious business,” said Frances, quietly.  “It is not easy to throw ourselves into the lives of others, to help them and sympathize with them, and love them. I think there is a good deal for you to do.”… Read More

Christmas Hope: Trusting God’s Promises

What God did when he sent his Son into the world is an absolute guarantee that he will do everything he has ever promised to do. – D. Martin Lloyd-Jones… Read More

Immanuel: God with us

My dwelling place shall be with them… Read More

At Christmastime and Always

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New Year 2012: Will I begin with pride or humility?

The temptation and tendency to pride is pretty strong.  I will be better.  I will be skinnier.  I will be more disciplined.  I will read more books.  I will simplify.  I will. I will.  I will…. Read More

Teaching on Grace

I saw a sign recently that read: this classroom runs on laughter, love, and lots of coffee.  While I still want a sign like that for my desk, I’ve also been reminded recently that my classroom runs on grace.  And mercy…. Read More

Mundane Tuesdays and Golden Spiders

Trying to redeem the time, I sat at my desk to fill the empty silence with reading, thinking, and background music.  In reality, it was God who was redeeming the time, and He appointed a spider to help do it…… Read More

Interruptions

“The great thing is, if one can…” thoughts on interruptions from C.S. Lewis and Elisabeth Elliot…Read More

Spurgeon for a Monday: “Nevertheless”

Wonderful meditation on Psalm 73:23… Read More

Grief and the Hope

But man’s law will not deter someone bent on disobeying God’s law.   Law is not meant to stop evil; it is there to establish justice and show what sin is. … Read More

But the Lord is Faithful

It all begins and ends with the faithfulness of the Lord… Read More

George Muller and Work

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Spurgeon on Prayer

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Good Friday: The atoning sacrifice

Perfect justice meets perfect mercy.  In his death, Christ bore the sin that separated me from God.  He took my sin so that He would bear my punishment so that I may believe and find forgiveness and peace with God…. Read More

The Littles of our Little World — Spurgeon

God is always thinking upon us, never turns aside his mind from us, has us always before his eyes; and this is precisely as we would have it, for it would be dreadful to exist for a moment beyond the observation of our heavenly Father…. Read More

Teacher Brain

I have it: end-of-the-year teacher brain.  Last Friday it manifested itself by telling the students about Goldilocks and the two dwarves.  Today it kept leaving the last letter off of the words I wrote on the board.  And a whole pot of coffee couldn’t fix it…. Read More

Teaching — This Present Sphere

Therefore be not discontented with your calling.  Whatever God has made your position, or your work, abide in that, unless you are quite sure that He calls you to something else.  Let your first care be to glorify God to the utmost of your power where you are.  Fill your present sphere to His praise, and if He needs you in another He will show it you. Read More

From Strength to Strength — Spurgeon

Fretful spirits sit down and trouble themselves about the future. “Alas!” say they, “we go from affliction to affliction.” Very true, O thou of little faith, but then thou goest from strength to strength also. Thou shalt never find a bundle of affliction which has not bound up in the midst of it sufficient grace…. Read More

Christmas 2013: I came that they may have life

While I am remembering Christ come as a baby, they can see Him as the risen King.  While I see as through a mirror darkly, they can see face to face.  While I am right to grieve down here, they are right in rejoicing with a joy exceeding that of the wise men. All because of the reality of Christmas… Read More

Lined with Gold

I imagined what it would be like to break free from the dark shadows and through the clouds see that light clearly, with nothing in the way. As happens, the clouds closed again and I, still being on Earth, had to drive through the rain storm.  But as I drove, I remembered the gold in the clouds and knew the storm would not last.  When the storm did finally end, the sun came back out and cast a vibrant rainbow across the sky: a reminder of God’s promises as the gold-lined clouds had been.  Promises that lead believers from hope to hope even while the shadow of suffering spreads over them… Read More

The Confessions of a New Year’s Scrooge

I’m about to confess something that may make me wildly unpopular, but here goes: I don’t really like New Year’s Eve/Day as a holiday… Read More

My Resurrection is Assured

Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven. The same man, Paul, who wrote this meditation on Christ’s resurrection also wrote about his “thorn” in his flesh, a thorn he pleaded for God to take away. God did not take it away, but showed Paul how to endure… Read More

It was Good for Me, Or, the Day my Stomach Quit

At a purely physical level, yes, this about a digestive system gone awry and I want healing. I would like to be able to eat more foods again, or at least know why I can’t. But at the same time, this is not about my stomach as much as it is about the God who created it, and the love, hope, peace, and joy that He gives…Read More

The Desire for What is New

I remember that what I do at the end of each year is not my hope for a better future, but merely an imperfect reflection of the perfect reality that is coming with Christ’s return at the end of all years…Read More

Perspective

To see with God’s perspective,

Because eternity is pressing

and His plan is certain to pass;

And because I am His forever… Read More

Bright Hope for Tomorrow: A Teacher’s Sunday Night

So it may be that the daily scatterings of knowledge, patience, discipline, and love in the classroom will sprout and grow, whether the teacher sees or knows how.  It could be that the late nights and early rising will later be blessed with a harvest that the teacher cannot judge now… Read More

And So

It was the context that gave the phrase itself the strength to arrest my attention. It seemed as if the phrase called out, “Think of what I convey. Think of the depth and feeling that one little phrase can hold.”… Read More

Single and Barren

I had unspoken conditions to that last answer, though. I would accept whatever number God gives me as long as I got married by 23 and started having kids by 26. What my 20-year-old self didn’t stop to consider is that God may choose to give me none and he would still be good and loving to me… Read More

Listening to Silence

For the first time this week, I heard it: silence. An electrical storm had rolled through town, temporarily knocking out the power on my street.  Cocooned in the living room, the very center of my home, silence enveloped me… Read More

12 Questions Concerning My Gift of God’s Varied Grace (Singleness)

Singleness is not a lack-luster stage of existence, nor does it mean there is something about me that needs to be fixed.  It is a gift from my heavenly Father who knows how to give good gifts.  As a gift, then, singleness should be received with thanksgiving… Read More

Desperate

Yes, in our brokenness, we become desperate for the right things, but we do not pursue them rightly because we are not just desperate… we are a lost people. Yes, we are desperate and lost… and without hope.

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