Catch up on our latest blog posts below.
I noticed a bold red-orange-pink flowery bush, in full bloom, while riding down Butterworth Road a few days ago. This is the same road, in the same town, where brown leaves abound… not only on the ground, but attached stubbornly to the trees. It seems that spring wants to arrive, while winter wants to remain. This represents the soul of man. While the spirit of the man surrendered to God is totally made new, the soul of that man is a work-in-progress. Death still tries to cling to life. Reminders of what used to be. As we examine ourselves, it may appear that we will always look like this. But as we trust in the transforming power of God, which comes by renewing our minds (Romans 12:2), the brown is forced to fall off our lives, and there’s no adhesion powerful enough to put the deadness back on, as we continue to renew. You know, no one around here is volunteering to climb the trees in order to remove all the deadness. But no one needs to. In a matter of days, those leaves will be “leaving”. Count on it. Making room for more new life. Exchanging the brown for a vibrant green. Those trees will begin to “agree” with what the flowery bush is saying. The dominating new life forces the old out. In John 14:6, Jesus said about Himself, “I am THE LIFE.” His life is in us! May our lives show the departure of the crunchy, lifeless brown. May we exhibit the flowing sap, the forming buds, the heightened fragrance… as it results in the changing landscape of this world! It’s a set-up for bearing luscious fruit! May God be glorified!
Sharon Collver, March 8, 2017
"I'll just have what she's having." Have you ever gotten to a restaurant after they've already ordered and said that? It's probably because what they had looked that good. You didn't have to ask the ingredients or amount of time it's cooked to decide. You just liked the look of it.
Such is life. People want what you have when it looks good to them. Do you still manage to stay calm when the computer breaks down at the bank? Do you have a smile on your face when it'd be easier to be angry? Do you have peace when stress would be acceptable? People notice and they want what you're having.
You know the story...you close your computer despondently after scrolling through social media and checking your bank account balance. You might be looking at your life, thinking, "What happened? I had dreams and goals, and just look at me now." So you grab your keys and head out to get fast food to take your mind off of everything. Discouragement may be trying to attach itself to you as you look at your life compared to the lives of others, and in this day and age it can be so easy to see the best of everyone else's stories and be painfully aware of the worst in your own. The more you meditate on that discouragement and on the lies that the enemy brings to you, the more you will begin to accept the feeling of unworthiness and draw back from the Spirit of God, forfeiting the blessing of close fellowship with your Maker. Let me give you some good news: you were made for fellowship, and your Father desires that you be close to Him. The Word tells us that as we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us (James 4:8). More good news is this: nothing can separate you from the love of God (Romans 8:38), and if you know how much you're loved, then you will be restored to a place of FAITH! Faith in your heart will bring you back to encouragement and hope about your future, and as you speak out words of faith, your life will begin to turn around in every way! Meditate on the Word of God more than you do on comparing your life to others, and watch as the deepest goals and dreams in your heart begin to come to pass. You are loved!
Ashley Steinberg, February 24, 2017