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Monday, November 30, 2020


Opening Prayer: Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you are the God who comes.  Always coming.  Help me to see it, to trust it, and to celebrate it.  Today and every day.  Amen.

Scripture: Isaiah 35:1-11

Journal: Where has God come in your life?  Where is he coming into your life right now?  What hope does it give you to know that he will come?  What does that do in your heart?


God has come.
God is continually coming.
God will come again.
This is the beauty of Advent!


Closing Prayer: Come, Lord Jesus!

Sunday, November 29, 2020


Opening Prayer: Help us, O Lord, to be ready for your coming; whoever, wherever, and whenever that may be.  Amen.

Scripture: Luke 12:35-40

Journal: What does being ready look like spiritually?  How do you cultivate a sense of readiness?  What do you think God wants you to be ready for?



stay on your toes

sit on the edge of your seat
keep your lamp burning

keep an eye on the horizon
keep your ears open
for the knock at the door

live in a state
of perpetual readiness
for advent has begun


Closing Prayer:  Lord Jesus, during this season of Advent, make us ready for your arrival, both within us and among us.  Amen.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

rooted and established

Opening Prayer: Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.  But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.  He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields it fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither.  Whatever he does prospers. (Psalm 1:1-3)

Scripture: Ephesians 3:17-18

Journal: What gives your life a healthy sense of rootedness?  What helps you when things aren’t going so well?  How can Jesus give your life a sense of rootedness, regardless of how things are going?  How do you stay rooted in his great love?

Reflection: I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ.” (Ephesians 3:17-18)

Rooted and established in love?  I have my moments, I suppose.  One minute I am able to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is his great love for me, and the next I lose track of it altogether, becoming just as convinced that I am totally and completely unlovable.  One minute I’m living my life so that I will be loved, and the next I’m living it because I already am.  It can be a bit of rollercoaster at times.

It all comes back to identity.  As long as I live as if my worth and value are up to me, I am in for a hell of a ride.  But when I can finally become convinced that my worth and value are set in stone by the unfailing love of God, it creates a rootedness.  My life becomes more durable and less at the mercy of mood and whim and circumstance.

Oh to be convinced of your great love for us.  Oh to grasp its heights and depths and breadth.  Oh to live a life that is rooted and established in that love.  That’s the life I truly long to live.  Help me, O Lord, to believe that it’s possible.


Closing Prayer: Thank you, O Lord, for your great love.  Thank you that it is wider and longer and higher and deeper than I could ever imagine.  Help me to sink my roots deep down into that unfailing love and care this day, so that I will not be moved by mood or whim or circumstance, but moved only by the power of your great affection.  Amen.

Friday, November 27, 2020

dwelling in

Opening Prayer: He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”  (Psalm 91:1-2)

Scripture: Ephesians 3:17

Journal: What does it mean for God to dwell in your heart through faith?  Why would God do that?  What is his hope?  How does it invite us to dwell in God’s heart in return?  What does it mean to dwell in God?  How do we do that? 

Reflection: “So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.” (Ephesians 3:17)  Is that not an amazing phrase!  The God who became flesh and made his dwelling among us, is now the God who comes and makes his dwelling within us.  God has taken up residence in the hearts of his people.  He has made his home in them!  Thus, he is continually present and available to us at all times.  The only question is: Are we present and available to him?  Why else would he come to dwell within us, unless it was because he wanted us to dwell in him?  That is God’s deepest desire, that we would live our lives in him.

Thomas Merton said it this way: “Some people live for God, some people live with God, and some people live in God.”  Now, don’t get me wrong, living for God and with God are great things, but God wants more for us than that.  He wants us to live in him.  He does not merely want duty and obligation, or even side-by-side companionship, he wants intimate union.  He invites us into the very life of the Trinity.  He doesn’t just want us running around doing all sorts of things for him, he wants us to live in him.  He wants us to share in his life.  He wants us to see with his eyes, he wants us to think his thoughts, and he wants us to have his heart. 


Closing Prayer: Dwell in my heart, Lord Jesus, as I dwell in yours.  Amen.

Thursday, November 26, 2020

the father

Opening Prayer: Thank you, O Lord, that you really are a good, good father; one who always acts out of love and is always seeking my good.  Help me to trust in your father-love, today and every day.  Amen.

Scripture: Ephesians 3:14-15

Journal: What does it mean to you that God is our father?  What images does this bring up in you?  What wounds does it touch?  What healing does it bring?

Reflection: “For this reason I kneel before the Father from whom all of fatherhood in heaven and earth derives its name.” (Ephesians 3:14-15)  The fatherhood of God is the basis of, and the foundation for, all of life.  Until we really believe that God is, indeed, a good and loving father, we will never be able to love and trust him, or each other, in the way he longs for us to.

Our earthly fathers were meant to give us a taste of this, but, unfortunately, many of them were so broken that they were either unwilling or unable to do so.  Thus, for many, the only picture of fatherhood available is lacking, if not downright hurtful.  Our fathers were meant to love and protect and be there for us, not wound, criticize, and abandon us. 

Thus, we must somehow recapture the truth and the beauty of what God intended fatherhood to be: a loving, caring, protecting, providing, pursuing presence.  Someone who is both strong and tender.  One who is always about our good.

That’s the kind of father God is.  In fact, when we roll the very best fathers in the history of fatherhood all up into one, we are just beginning to see and understand the depth of his fatherhood.  God is the father we always dreamt about in our wildest dreams.  In fact, he is far beyond that. 


Closing Prayer: “Lord Jesus, reveal me to the Father.  Let His name, His infinite Father-love, the love with which He loved Thee, according to Your prayer, be in me.  Then shall I say aright, ‘My Father!’  Then shall I apprehend Your teaching, and the first spontaneous breathing of my heart will be: ‘My Father, Your Name, Your Kingdom, Your Will.’ Amen.”  —Andrew Murray


Sunday, November 22, 2020


Opening Prayer: You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies, you anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows.  Thank you, O Shepherd of my soul.  Amen.

Scripture: Psalm 23:5

Journal: What is overflowing from your life these days?  What would it look like if you were to overflow with the life and love of God?  How can that happen?

Reflection: Life was intended to be the result of overflow.  The work of God must always start within us before it can ever come through us in any meaningful way.  Unless we are overflowing with his life and his love, we will never have anything of substance and depth and authenticity to offer those around us. 

Therefore, we must pay careful attention to the work God is doing inside us.  We must give it the time and space it needs to grow and thrive and flourish.  We must make sure to nurture and tend and care for it faithfully and tenderly.  God desires that we overflow with his life and his love into a broken and hurting world that is desperate need for him.  But it all starts with what he is doing within us.


Closing Prayer: Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask of imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!  Amen. (Ephesians 3:20)

Thursday, November 19, 2020

his glorious riches

Opening Prayer: Forgive us, O Lord, for operating like we don’t need you.  Forgive us when our pride and self-sufficiency get in the way of what you are trying to do.  Forgive us for relying on ourselves, and our own gifts and abilities, rather than relying on you.  Help us to learn what it means to live and to love out of your glorious riches.  Through Christ we pray.  Amen.

Scripture: Ephesians 3:16

Journal: Do you typically live life out of his glorious riches, or out of your own strength, abilities, and giftedness?  What would it look like to live out of his glorious riches?

Reflection: “I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being.”(Eph. 3:16) Out of his glorious riches.  How often do really I live my life out of his glorious riches?  Truth be told, not very often, I’m afraid.  Most of the time I tend to live out of my own strengths, gifts, and abilities.  God offers me his glorious riches and yet I still try to put my head down and muscle through in my own strength.  Is it because I overestimate my own abilities, or because I underestimate his?  Who knows, maybe it’s a sad combination of the two.   

The only time I tend to rely on his glorious riches is when I have no other choice, when I have reached the end of my rope.  It makes me wonder why it takes me so long to realize that there’s a better way to live.  Why do I make it my last resort instead of my normal reality?  Wouldn’t it be easier if I just relied on his glorious riches to begin with?

Maybe that’s why Paul prayed this prayer for the church at Ephesus.  He knew all too well how tempting it was to try and rely on his own resources, rather than on God’s.  He knew that there are times when relying on our own strengths, gifts, and abilities can actually become an obstacle to what he’s trying to do, rather than a help.

O Lord, help us learn what it means to live out of your glorious riches, rather than our own.


Closing Prayer: O Lord, I really do believe that I need you.  Help me to live like it.  Amen.

Wednesday, November 18, 2020


Opening Prayer: Thank you, O Lord, that you see the real me, no matter how hard I might try to hide it.  Thank you that you invite me to live my life openly and honestly before you.  Help me to have the courage to do so.  Lord, have mercy.  Amen. 

Scripture: Psalm 32:3-5

Journal: In what ways are you not living truly and openly before yourself, your God, and your world?  What would it look like to be real?  How can the practice of confession help that process?

Reflection: “When I kept silent my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long.  For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer.  Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity.  I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’—and you forgave the guilt of my sin.” (Psalm 32:3-5)

Not only is there a freedom and a life that is found through confession, but there is also a deep sense of humility; which, although hard, is a very good thing.  We can never have too much humility.  It creates such fertile soil within and among us for the Spirit to move and to work and to act. 

Confession brings us face-to-face with who we really are, much to our dismay.  It cuts through all the bullshit; all the ways we try to manage and control how others see us.  It forces us to be real.  It takes us all the way down to the ground.  It enables others see our mess, our ugliness, and our total dependence on God, which is not the easiest or the most comfortable thing in the world, but is a process that is essential to life-giving community.

When we refuse to confess, we lock ourselves up in the prison of the make-believe.  A place where we can’t truly get to know people and they can’t get to know the real us.  Thus, we end up living in loneliness and hypocrisy, which is no life at all.

God wants so much more for us than that.  He wants peace and joy and life and love—all of which is impossible if we are not living truly and openly with him, with ourselves, and with others.  That is the beautiful gift that confession offers, if we are brave enough to go there.


Closing Prayer:  Here I am, O Lord, all of me—no covering, no posturing, and no pretense.  Just the real me, standing naked and vulnerable before you.  And, as best I know how, I give all of myself to you—the good the bad and the ugly.  Have mercy on me, O Lord.  Amen. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

keeping it real

Opening Prayer: Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen. (The Book of Common Prayer)

Scripture: Psalm 32:1-11

Journal: Who are you real with these days?  Who knows what’s really going on within you?  What would it look like to live in such a way that your community is able to fully know and fully love you?  Will you make a commitment to live that way?

Reflection: “Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity.  I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’—and you forgave the guilt of my sin.” (Psalm 32:5) It is amazing what living openly and honestly with ourselves, our God, and one another will do for us, if we are courageous enough to do it.  That’s why confession is so important; it does not lead to guilt and shame, but to freedom and joy.

But still we hide.  We hide our sin, we fail to acknowledge our weakness, and we cover up our flaws and our failures.  And, thus, we end up alone.  Dietrich Bonhoeffer said it so well: “Pious fellowship permits no one to be a sinner.  So everyone must conceal his sin from himself and from the fellowship.  We dare not be sinners.  Many Christians are unthinkably horrified when a real sinner is suddenly discovered among the righteous.  So we remain alone in our sin, living in lies and hypocrisy.  The fact is that we are sinners!”  We live as prisoners in our own lives, not as those who have been redeemed and set free.  As one of my good friends once said: “God can’t help fake people, only real ones.”

So we must somehow learn to live real lives before ourselves, before one another, and before our God.  We must be willing to live from the truth of our inner being, whatever it may be.  We must be brave enough to put our real selves out there on a regular basis, and let our God and our friends get their hands, and their hearts, involved in our mess.  That is the only way it can ever be redeemed and transformed.  We must learn to keep it real.  That’s what confession is all about.  It is meant to help redeem and restore us.  It is meant to lead us to joy and freedom:  Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!”  So let’s start today! 


Closing Prayer: Help me, O Lord, to live a real life today, not a fake one.  Give me the strength and the grace and the courage to come out of hiding and live openly and honestly with you, with myself, and with my community.  For only then can I live in the joy and the freedom you created me for.  Amen.


Monday, November 16, 2020

a prayer to care

Opening Prayer:  “Show me you ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” (Psalm 25:4-5)

Scripture: Psalm 25:4-7

Journal: What do you care too much about?  How does that impact the way you live?  What would it look like to care about the things God cares most about?  How would that change the way you live?

Reflection:  Forgive me, O Lord, for the things I care too much about—and the things I don’t.  Forgive me that I’m more concerned with being right than I am with being loving, I’m more concerned with being comfortable than I am with being compassionate, I’m more concerned with being liked than I am with being genuine, and I’m more concerned with my kingdom than I am with yours.  Lord, have mercy!

Help me to totally surrender myself to you, so that I will not be consumed with the petty and the passing, but will only care about the things that matter most to you. 

“Show me you ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.  Remember, O Lord, your great mercy and love, for they are from old.  Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O Lord.” (Psalm 25:4-7)


Closing Prayer:  “Remember, O Lord, your great mercy and love, for they are from old.  Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you are good, O Lord.” (Psalm 25:6-7)

Sunday, November 15, 2020


Opening Prayer: O Lord, help me to magnify you in all that I do, think, and say.  For this life is about you, not about me.  Amen.

Scripture: Luke 1:46-48

Journal: Who, or what, are you magnifying these days?  What would it look like to magnify the Lord?

Reflection: “My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. (Luke 1:46-48) Life with God is about making him big, not vice versa.  It is our job to magnify him, not ourselves.  The Greek word used here is megalynō, which means to make great.  In contrast to the word Mary uses for herself, tapeinōsis, which means to make low.  Thus, our role is to make him bigger, while making ourselves smaller, to lift him high, while making ourselves low.  For this life is not about us, but about him.  It is about his glory, not our own.  We cannot magnify him, if we are constantly trying to magnify ourselves.  Mary realized that.  O Lord, help me to realize it as well.


Closing Prayer:  I am here to make you big, not myself.  O Lord, help me to remember that.  Amen.

Saturday, November 14, 2020

making all things new

Opening Prayer:  Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you are making all things new—even me.  Thanks be to God!  Amen.

Scripture: Revelation 21:1-5

Journal:  How is Jesus making you new these days?

Reflection:  I don’t know where I came up with the idea that Jesus making all things new would happen suddenly and instantaneously in my life, but I have found that, more often than not, the kind of new I experience, this side of the new heavens and the new earth, comes about much more slowly.  In fact, it is a new that Jesus has been making for a long, long time.  Notice that he doesn’t say, “I will make all things new,” or even, “I have made all things new,” he says, “I am making all things new.”  In fact, it is something that is going on even as we speak.  Quite possibly, since the very moment when things went terribly awry in the beginning, Jesus has been at work, making all things new again, and will continue for all eternity.

He is even making us new.  The problem is that what we expect to be sudden and instantaneous, most likely will occur over time, with a good bit of struggle, the same way a caterpillar is transformed into a butterfly.  The struggle and the pain and the turmoil is a necessary part of the transformation.  It is not a short and easy process, but still a good and beautiful one.  And it is likely to be so slow that we think nothing is going on, unless we pay careful attention.

So let us look for the new that Jesus is making, both within and around us.  It is there; be it ever so small and subtle at times.  Look hard, because when you finally see the tiny hints of new breaking through the soil of your soul, you will know for sure that God is up to something good and beautiful.  He, indeed, is making all things new.  Even you.  Thanks be to God!


Closing Prayer:  Help me see, Lord Jesus, the new you are making, both within and around me, so that I may fully receive and enjoy what you are up to.  Amen.

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

and God said

Opening Prayer:  O God, you spoke into the darkness and things came to be.  Speak into my darkness, this day, and bring about your glorious light.  Breathe your Divine Breath into this pile of dust and bring me to life again and again and again. O Lord, I have no light, or breath, or life apart from you.  Unless you speak again this day, nothing of value or substance can, or will, come about.  Lord, have mercy.  Amen.

Scripture: Genesis 1:1-31

Journal: What is God saying to you through the scriptures today?  What is it bringing about?

Reflection: “And God said. . .” (Genesis 1:3, 6, 9, 11, 14, 20, 24, 26, 29)  It is a phrase that echoes throughout the entire creation narrative, reminding us that there is both design and intention woven into the very fabric of creation: First God speaks, and then things come into being.  Unfortunately, we seem to get it backwards more often than not; at least I do.

For some reason my default mode is to try and make things happen on my own and then invite God to join me, which sets me up to experience a lot of frustration and failure.  God breathed me into being, not vice versa.  He is the only One who can speak into the darkness and bring about the light.  Any light that I might have, or give, comes directly from him.  I have no light on my own, I am merely the moon that reflects the light of the sun.  Therefore, I would be wise to stop trying to make things happen on my own and just wait for him to speak and move and act.  It is how things were designed to work.  And if I can learn this simple, yet profound, truth, things will be a lot more fruitful and a lot less frustrating. 


Closing Prayer: Speak, Lord, for unless you do, nothing of value can happen.  Amen.

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

not if, but when

Opening Prayer:  Thank you, O Lord, that when we pass through the waters, you will be with us.  Thank you that when we pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over us.  Thank you that when we walk through the fire, we will not be burned; the flames will not set us ablaze, because you are with us.  Give us the strength and the courage and the grace to believe that.  Amen.

Scripture: Isaiah 43:1-7

Journal: Where are you passing through the waters or walking through the fires these days?  Where is God in the midst of it?  Do you sense his presence?  What do you think he’s up to?

Reflection: God never promised that we would not have to pass through the waters or walk through the fires of this life.  In fact, he promised just the opposite; he promised that we would.  But he did say that when the waters rise and the flames blaze, he would be with us.  He promised that the waters would not sweep over us and that the flames would not set us ablaze because we are precious and honored in his sight and he loves us.  Therefore, we do not have to live in fear.  God is trustworthy.  He is accomplishing something very good in us as a result of the waters and the flames; something that could be accomplished in no other way.  We might not be able to see it right now, but one day all of our pain and all of our sorrow and all of our suffering and struggling will be redeemed.  Thanks be to God!


Closing Prayer:  Help us to trust you, O Lord, no matter what we may be going through.  For you are the Lord, our God, the Holy One of Israel, our Savior.  Amen.

Sunday, November 8, 2020


Opening Prayer:  Still and quiet my soul this day, O God, that I might find you in the midst of the silence.  Amen.

Scripture: Habakkuk 2:20

Journal: What role does silence play in your life with God?  Is it something you embrace or avoid?  Why?  How might you incorporate silence into your normal rhythm of life?

Reflection:  Henri Nouwen once wrote: “Silence is the discipline by which the inner fire of God is tended and kept alive.”  Thus, silence is not a luxury in the spiritual life, but a necessity.  If we want a rich and deep life with God, silence is essential, not optional.  If we want the fires of God to burn hot within and among us, we must continually throw logs on the inner fire.  We must relentlessly make time and space for God to speak and move and act.  We must stop our feet, shut our mouths, and open our ears.  If we do not, we will find that the life of the Spirit within us just shrivels up and dies.  The next thing we know, we find ourselves running around breathlessly, doing a-million-and-one good things that are totally devoid of life and power.  We end up running on fumes, trying to make things happen on our own. 

We must come to realize that silence is for us, not for him.  Silence helps put things in proper perspective.  It helps us to see who God really is, and who we really are.  Thus, it accomplishes something very good within and among us, the same way it did at the beginning of all things.  Silence teaches us that the Divine rhythm never changes: there is silence, God speaks, and then things come into being.  

Annie Dillard said it so well: “You do not have to sit outside in the dark. If, however, you want to look at the stars, you will find that darkness is necessary. But the stars neither require nor demand it.”  Likewise, you do not have to sit in silence.  If, however, you want to hear from God, you will find that silence is necessary.  How might God be inviting you to see and experience him in silence?


Closing Prayer:  O Lord, you are indeed in your holy temple.  Therefore, help me to be still and silent before you.  Amen.

Saturday, November 7, 2020

divine union

Opening Prayer:  Lord Jesus, our good shepherd, help us to listen to your voice this day, so that we might know you the way you long to be known.  Amen.

Scripture: John 10:14-15

Journal:  How would you describe your knowing of God these days?  How do you think God wants to be known by you?  What would it look like to move that direction?

Reflection:  “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me—just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay my life down for the sheep.” (John 10:14-15)

Wait, what?  Jesus wants us to know him the way the Father knows him and he knows the Father?  How is that even possible?  It simply sounds too good to be true.  Well, it is too good and it is also too true.

We were created out of the overflow of Divine love; made in the image of indescribable intimacy, in order to be invited into the joy and life and love of that intimate union.  Anything short of that is far less than God desires for us, and created us for.  We were made for Divine union.  We were made to enter into the life and love of the Trinity.  That’s how Jesus can say that he knows us as the Father knows him and he knows the Father.  And he longs for us to know him in the same way.  It is the most intimate type of knowing imaginable.  The knowing that Paul talks about when he prays that the church in Ephesus would “know the love that surpasses knowledge.” (Ephesians 3:19)

What an invitation!  But will we accept it?  Will we turn our hearts and souls and minds to the Lord and enter into this Divine union?  Will we make time and space to be with him and pay attention to him and listen to his voice?  Will we stop all of our frenzied activity for a minute or two and climb into his loving embrace?  If not, we will never know the beauty and intimacy and life and love that he offers us.


Closing Prayer:  Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you even want to know us, and that you want us to know you.  Thank you that you wanted that so badly that you laid down your life so it could be a possibility.  The next step is up to us.  Help us to turn our hearts and our souls and our minds to you.  Help us to stop running around, to shut our mouths, and to climb up into your great arms of love.  Help us to live every minute of every day in that loving embrace, so that we will know you the way the Father knows you and you know the Father.  Amen.

Friday, November 6, 2020


Opening Prayer:  Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you stand and knock at the door of my soul today.  Give me the strength and the grace and the courage to open the door and let you in, so that we may be together and so that the fires of our love can be reignited.  Amen.

Scripture: Revelation 3:14-22

Journal: How would you describe the current state of your heart and soul?  How do you long to describe it?  How do you think Jesus longs to describe it?

Reflection:  Zealous: having fervor (intense heat) for a person, cause, or object.  Jesus tells us to be zealous, to have a passion and a fire for God burning deep within our hearts and souls.  For if we, God’s people, do not have that burning deep within us, then how can we ever expect the world to be ignited by his love?

Unfortunately, we tend to live with a more watered-down version of the life Jesus wants for us.  We settle for far less than the love and the passion and the power Jesus made us for.  We, like the church at Laodicea, allow other things and other people and other responsibilities to occupy all of our inner space and dull our desire for God; much to his chagrin. 

God’s deepest desire is that we would catch fire for him.  That’s why he tells us to “be zealous and repent.”  He is as tired of us living lukewarm lives as we are.  He wants so much more for, and from, us.  And it all starts with hearing his invitation to a deeper life and opening the door.  He will not barge in.  He waits to be invited, again and again and again.  For if we open the door, he will come in.  And each day that we do, the fires of his love will grow in us a little more.  So start today.  Don’t allow everyone and everything else that is knocking on your door to keep you from hearing his call and responding to it.  The life of your soul depends on it. 


Closing Prayer:  Lord Jesus, help me to hear your knock today and open the door.  For only then will I be able to live with the passion and zealousness you desire for me.  Amen.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Watch and Wait


Don't forget Watch and Wait if you are looking for a good companion for yourself, your friends, your church, your staff, your small group, etc. for Advent and Christmas.  Advent begins on Sunday, November 29.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

grace and truth

Opening Prayer:  Lord Jesus, thank you that you were full of grace and truth, not just one or the other.  Forgive us when we err on either side.  And give us the wisdom to know how to live with that wonderful combination of the two, just like you did.  Amen.

Scripture: John 1:14

Journal:  What does it look like to be full of grace and truth?  What does it look like in your life?  What does it look like as you live your life in this world?  Which side do you typically err?  What is the impact of that?  When was the last time you have spoken truth without grace?  When was the last time you sacrificed truth in order to not offend or make waves?


grace and truth


not grace

at the expense

of truth


nor truth

at the expense

of grace


but both



that is what

Jesus calls us to


Closing Prayer:  Forgive us, Lord Jesus, for the times when we have been cruel and harsh and uncaring in our presentation of truth.  And forgive us, as well, for the times when we have sacrificed truth for the sake of civility.  Help us to be full of grace and truth, just the way you were.  Amen.

Monday, November 2, 2020

God alone

Opening Prayer:  My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from him.

Scripture: Psalm 62:1-12

Journal: How and where is your life more about God and than about God alone?  What does it look like to trust in God alone?  Will you?

Reflection: It is no accident that, in the Hebrew, Psalm 62 begins with the words: “Only for God.”  Those words set the tone and the theme for the rest of the psalm—God alone.  For God alone, my soul waits in silence.  My soul finds rest in God alone.  He alone is my rock and my salvation.  Find rest, O my soul, in God alone.  Only when we are trusting in God alone will we be living the life God most wants us to live.

Unfortunately, most often we tend to live for God and, rather than God alone.  God and comfort, God and ease, God and work, God and success, God and my own tastes and preferences; the list is endless.  It is the and that causes many, if not most, of our problems.  In the words of A. W. Tozer: “In the and is our great woe.  If we omit the and we shall soon find God.”  For it is impossible to seek God and something else; it is impossible to follow Jesus and someone else.  We must eliminate the and.  Most of the spiritual journey involves moving from God and to God alone.  In fact, that is the definition of true freedom—moving from God and to God alone. 

So why do we keep holding on to the and?


Closing Prayer:  Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him.