God Sees You
Up on a hill in Wales in a little chapel, a small stained-glass window brought home a truth to me: God sees me. Coming at a time when I was thinking through some of the changes that had come my way, I felt a little sore in heart and a bit befuddled in mind. I didn’t know what I needed nor have good words for what I wanted as I entered the tiny space.
God Longs for Me
It was 2001 when I went on my first silent retreat. By that time, I had been counseling for eleven years, been through six years of counseling, lived through what felt like excruciating years, and proved God in some really difficult moments. I was hungry for more, hungry for him. That’s how I arrived in England at a little village to meet with a woman I respected very much. Sitting down for our first meeting, I can’t tell you how important it was to me that she know I was hungry for God, so I told her how far I had come and that I had worked really hard to get there. I had a lot of words.
Do You Love Me?
One of the most poignant moments following Jesus’ resurrection is His encounter with Peter on that Galilean beach. (John 21) Three times after Christ’s arrest, Peter denied Him. Remember Peter’s bitter tears after the rooster crowed? (Luke 22)
Who Do You Say that I Am?
The Apostle John’s story fascinates me: A simple fisherman, he was called by Jesus and lived alongside Him throughout His earthly ministry. John took Jesus’ mother Mary under his wing and cared for her, as requested by Jesus. He suffered flogging, imprisonment, interrogation, and exile. John’s brother and fellow apostle James was killed early on by the sword. John lived longer than any other apostle, pastoring in Ephesus, and was eventually banished to the Isle of Patmos in his old age. John wrote the fourth Gospel, three epistles, and the book of Revelation.
Why Are You So Afraid?
Friday before Christmas, a wicked winter storm knocked out power for hundreds of thousands and trees were tossed like toothpicks in my hometown. It was frightening, to say the least, and some residents are still in the dark and cold. Fear comes in all varieties: fear of the storm, of death, of severe diagnosis, of poverty, of losing one’s job, and the list goes on.
Can These Bones Live?
I’ve had my share of “bad news.” I know you have too if you have lived long enough. I read somewhere that grief feels a lot like fear, and I admit this has been my experience. The inevitable, the avoid-at-all-costs thing that rears its ugly head and becomes a reality sometimes hits hard and fast, sometimes grows heavier with each passing day. When the future looms dark and petrifying, I want to deny, deflect and pretend.