Verse Meditation–Joel 2.13

  Two Kisses “Then the LORD became jealous for his land and had pity on his people” (Joel 2.13 ESV). Several emotions get a bad wrap but none more than jealousy. Like almost everything, there is a holy and an unholy expression of it. Christians are so quick to label things as inherently good or bad without realizing that it is the intent filling it that makes it so. Judas gave Jesus a Kiss of Death, yet Paul exhorts Believers to give each other a Holy Kiss (Luke 22.48 & 2 Corn. 13.12). A kiss is not inherently good or Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Joel 2.13

Torn Hearts “Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead. Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish” (Joel 2.13 NLT). Tearing the clothes was symbolic of deep grief, mourning and repentance; however, like many symbolic traditions, the “rending of garments” had become a hollow action with no implication of true humility. When Caiaphas, the High Priest, tore his clothing, claiming Jesus (God in the flesh) to be blasphemy, he did so in an atmosphere of self-righteousness. Pride caused Caiaphas to Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Hosea 1.10

Children of the Living God “Yet the number o the children of Israel shall be like the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured or numbered. And in the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ it shall be said to them, ‘Children of the living God” (Hosea 1.10 ESV). Hosea is not a very uplifting book in the Bible. In fact, many harsh prophecies are declared against Israel because of their unfaithfulness to God. Just like an adulteress wife, the Children of God have been lusting after other Gods, namely Baal. God who Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Daniel 11.35

Persecution “And some of the wise will fall victim to persecution. In this way, they will be refined and cleansed and made pure until the time of the end, for the appointed time is still to come” (Daniel 11.35 NLT). There are many layers to Daniel’s prophesies–some speak to actual events throughout time and others speak metaphorically to a Believer’s personal life. Just like the Bible influences the world-view of all history, the Bible also dives deeply within each of us, applying truth to our inner and outer lives. Daniel has a vision of a time when God’s Children will Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Daniel 10.12

The Power of Humility “Then he continued, ‘Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them’” (Daniel 10.12 NIV). Daniel’s words to God were heard, and God responded to them. What did Daniel do to deserve God’s attentive ear? Why was Daniel so esteemed by the Lord? The answer is not in Daniel’s righteousness, for the Bible says that ALL have sinned and fallen short of God’s holy perfection (Romans 3.23). God knows Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Daniel 12.1

The Book End “At that time Michael, the archangel who stands guard over your nation, will arise. Then there will be a time of anguish greater than any since nations first came into existence. But at that time every one of your people whose name is written in the book will be rescued” (Daniel 12.1 NLT). We don’t need to know Bible Eschatology (study of end time events) to see what is already a prevalent theme in our culture. Movies, television shows, books, songs and art have all analyzed the topic of “What happens when the world ends?” Whether by Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Daniel 1.4

 Reading Path “…Train these young men in the language and literature of Babylon” (Daniel 1.4 NLV). Some people are fearful about consuming literature that is not necessarily designated part of the Christian genre. Indeed, the Scriptures are absolutely the most profound and important work for any of us to read. Jesus is the Word, and His thoughts towards us are found in the Bible (John 1.1). We must drink from His Living Water (the Bible) daily, so our spirits find the nourishment they need to flourish. However, when other “supplemental” writings that are rich in perspective are consumed by a reader Continue reading

Verse Meditation–Ezekiel 36.35

  Giving Up Control “And when I bring you back, people will say, ‘This former wasteland is now like the Garden of Eden! The abandoned and ruined cities now have strong walls and are filled with people!’” (Ezekiel 36.35 NLT). Something truly stunning happens when we finally give God the mess of our lives: He turns our “wasteland” into a “Garden of Eden.” But when we allow our pride and shame to prevent us from giving our lives fully to God, we stop God’s amazing work of redemption from transforming us and our situations. The truth, however, is that if Jesus’ Continue reading

Internet Cafe — Forgotten Groceries

I went grocery shopping for a few items, and I when I put my car into park on the driveway, I did what is very typical of me: I tried to carry every single grocery bag into my house in one trip. Since my hands were both draped with bags of heavy groceries, I was unable to close the car door. From the start, I knew I would eventually have to make a trip back to close it. Once I made it to my front porch, I had to set down some bags so I could unlock and open the Continue reading

Verse Meditation — Lamentations 3.22-23

New Mercies “The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning” (Lamentations 3.22-23 NLT). The worst thing that could happen had happened. Israel’s Promise Land had been taken from them. Reading how God established His children in the Promise Land through the demonstration of His love and power in the Old Testament, makes the destruction of the Chosen Nation that much more heart-wrenching. No wonder Lamentations’s description of Israel’s affliction is so passionate and outspoken. The people of Israel had forsaken their God, and the full force of Continue reading