The E Word

James 1:2-4 says, "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.  So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing." There it... Continue Reading →

Trusting God in the Face of Garbage Cans

When the sun is shining, when relationships are sailing, when CostCo has restocked its Kirkland pinot noir from Oregon - that's when I am all-in with God - praising, humming, brimming with spiritual contentment. But when life takes a turn, or as someone recently put it,  "When life throws garbage cans in your path," my... Continue Reading →

Praying Big

God, I pray with expectation that you will... I used to think prayers like this were presumptuous, even manipulative. He is God after all. But then I got to thinking... Jesus criticized those who doubted God's miraculous power - "Oh ye of little faith" he called them. And  when Jesus did perform a miracle, he... Continue Reading →

The Power of Prayer

My neighbor, Mary, a longtime nurse, commented, “I am not very religious, but I have witnessed the power of prayer. I don’t know how it works, but when people pray, I have seen healing.” I believe in the power of prayer.   Prayer to a God who is all-powerful, all-knowing, and all love. This God is... Continue Reading →

Staying Clay

The banker slid the document across his desk and handed me a pen. "Sign and date on this line." I took the pen and signed my first name, Barclay.  Then I began with the first syllable of my last name, Mar. Quite unexpectedly, my mind veered from the signature line to imagining the banker's impatient... Continue Reading →

Of Pride, Humility, and a Wayward Veil

August 10, 1986.  The sun had broken through the clouds and was shining brightly against a deep blue backdrop.  Our wedding ceremony and reception aboard the Free Spirit, cruising through Chicago's Burnham Harbor, had exceeded all my dreams.  Brett had been dashing in his white tuxedo, our vows had been heartfelt, and there had been... Continue Reading →

The little blue booklet

My mother spent time with individuals nearing the end, their Florida living rooms sporting a hospital bed, a hospice nurse at the ready. She was not shy about presenting the Gospel.  And leaving a little blue booklet on  bedside tables.  A booklet containing her favorite promises from God. Over time mom's booklets were sprinkled throughout... Continue Reading →

Do it afraid!

Franklin Roosevelt said, "Courage is not the absence of fear." Faith, too, is not the absence of fear. I heard a medical missionary once encourage her audience to "Do it afraid!"   She said if God is calling you to a soup kitchen, a nursery, a classroom, a place of service out of your comfort zone,... Continue Reading →

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