Up From the Pit

“For the roots of the mountains I sank down, the earth beneath barred me in forever. But you brought my life up from the pit, O Lord my God.” Jonah 2:6

Jonah was in the belly of the fish when he said that. He realized that he could no longer run from God and had to give in to what He wanted Jonah to do. It was painful, but in the end, he could say, “you brought my life up from the pit.”

Perhaps you’re wondering about your own life. It doesn’t seem to be going the way you had planned. There are obstacles in the way. Often. Always. But one thing you know and one thing you have going for you: God brought your life up from the pit. Where would you be now if He hadn’t?

The world may end tomorrow, but that’s one truth I can cling to: He brought my life up from the pit.

Sometimes we just need to reflect on the essentials.

Continue Reading

Is Your Lamp in the Closet?

He said to them, “Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open.” Mark 4:21-22

As I write this, I know that the room I am in could use another light so I take out a small lamp. Now I have a couple of choices. I can put it near where I am reading or I can put it on the floor. Placing it on the floor won’t do me any good because, well, it’s on the floor. There’s nothing there but carpet. The higher I put it, the more widespread is the light that goes out. Why would I put it on the floor anyway?

I suppose that it’s similar to my faith. I tend to hide my faith, sometimes to the point of burying it. What’s the point of that? Back in the day, I was bolder and confrontational with my faith.

What happened?

What changed?

Why is my lamp now on the floor, or worse yet, why is it in the closet with the door closed?

Continue Reading

Finders, Seekers

[Nicodemus] came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the miraculous signs you are doing if God were not with him.” John 3:2

We read this passage and get a sense that a sincere, curious man has approached Jesus. He doesn’t make a big showing of his encounter (for fear of being ostracized by his fellow leaders…probably). He’s a Seeker in the truest sense of the word. He’s hungry for the truth and isn’t disappointed at all.

Many of us can relate to Nicodemus. We’re not boisterous or “in your face” about our beliefs, but we’re still Seekers. Even if you’ve been a Believer for years, we’re still seeking truth, seeking direction, seeking wisdom, seeking answers in a world full of questions.

And of course we come to the right Man.

And yes, Wise Men Still Seek Him.

Continue Reading

With All My Heart

I call with all my heart, answer me, O Lord, and I will obey your decrees. Psalm 119:145

The story is told of Admiral Rickover. When he interviewed junior officers, he asked them two questions: “In everything you did, did you always give 100% effort?” The second was a followup (and always the same): “why not?” What Admiral Rickover understood about the human condition was that we tend to be slackers. Even in our mightiest efforts, we get tired and worn down. We get lazy.

The Psalmist writes that he calls out to God with all his heart. It may be that he, too, is worn down and tired, aching for relief. Like Adm. Rickover, I’ll ask the question, “When you call out to God, do you do it will all your might?”

And why not?

My answer probably reveals more about me than the question.

Continue Reading

No

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say no to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and Godly lives in this present age. Titus 2:11-12

First of all, memorize this passage.

Dwell on it, drink it in, get into your very soul. Play with it in your mind. Keep it churning and churning and spinning around in your head. Close your eyes and meditate on it. It will be time well spent.

A number of years ago there was a famous anti-drug campaign: just say no. Whether it worked or not is unclear, but let me just say that it was a good starting point (on its own it was doomed to fail without something to replace it). And so it is with us and sin (ungodliness and worldly passions). It’s a start. Is it the be all to end all? Part of the problem is that we put ourselves in situations that are tempting and once we’re down that path, it’s next to impossible to turn back.

What areas of temptation are you susceptible to? Only you can answer that. Scripture does tell us that we can say “no” to ungodliness and worldly passions.

Continue Reading
Close Menu