Your Past is Robbing You of Your Future

Focusing on your past robs you of the joy of today and the hope of tomorrow.  Many people never let go of the past. For some, the shame and regret of former sins keeps them chained to condemnation. For others, the good ole days (or their own glory days) keeps them looking back. Either way, many people can’t enjoy their lives because they are not fully “present.” There is a reason that your vehicle’s windshield is so much larger than its rear view mirror. Seeing where you are and where you are going is… Read More

When a Decision is Required

The Apostle Paul had some of the strangest life experiences of any one person in the Scriptures.  A culturally diverse and highly educated man, “Saul” (his original name) took his religion so seriously that he sought to annihilate this new sect called “The Way” (the early church’s original name). So zealous was Saul that he was named as being there and consenting to Stephen’s death – the church’s first martyr.  One day Saul had a life-altering encounter with Jesus Christ. Traveling down the road with a team of men, Saul was struck… Read More

Why Does Jesus Confront Me With Sin and Make Me Feel Guilty?

The persecutor had become the persecuted.  Saul, a vehement enemy of the “Way” (as early believers in Christ were called), was defending the very cause he once opposed. Saul had changed – his life, his words, even his name! What prompted such a turnaround? Paul’s conversion story is told more than once in Luke’s detailed, historical account of the early church (the book of Acts). Back then, he was known as Saul. He was a respected, educated, and cultured man, whose zealous desire to defend the Law of God compelled him to… Read More

Finding Clarity When Life Gets Complicated

“It’s complicated.” Have you ever felt like this was the most accurate answer to questions people ask you? How’s work going? “It’s complicated.” How’s school? “It’s complicated.” How about your New Year’s resolutions? “It’s complicated.” Your diet? “It’s complicated.” Your wife? “It’s complicated.” There’s even a place on social media websites under “relationship status” that gives you the option to answer, “It’s complicated.” Life can be complicated, but God can bring clarity.  Paul found himself in quite a war of social and theological ideals and opinions. He had once arrested and killed… Read More

Finding the Freedom of Forgiveness in a Culture of Shame

Shame may temporarily modify one’s actions, but it inevitably pushes people away from God. “You ought to be ashamed of yourself” is a phrase I have both heard and (I regret to say) said to others, including my own children. The truth is most people are already draped in a heavy, self-woven blanket of shame. Heaping more shame on an already weary soul leaves them demoralized and without hope. Jesus never left people without hope. What is the gospel if not the removal and lifting of the weight of shame? The most… Read More