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    Hiding Our Hurts

    I was guest-speaking in a local church and my topic was an honest story about presenting our brokenness before God and receiving the healing He wants to give. Before closing in prayer, the pastor stood in the center aisle, looked deeply into the eyes of his gathered congregants, and said, “As your pastor I have the privilege of seeing you midweek and hearing your heart-breaking stories of brokenness. Then in our weekend worship services, I have the pain of watching you hide your hurt away.”

    My heart ached at the hidden hurts that God came to heal. The writer of Hebrews…

    A Warm Welcome

    “Who will hug everybody?”

    That was one of the questions our friend Steve asked after he got the news that he had cancer and realized he would be away from our church for a while. Steve is the kind of man who makes everyone feel welcome—with a friendly greeting, a warm handshake, and even a “holy hug” for some—to adapt an application from Romans 16:16, which says, “greet one another with a holy kiss.”

    And now, as we pray for Steve that God will heal him, he is concerned that as he goes through surgery and treatment—and is away from our church…

    Bible Calls Immigrants To Be A Blessing

    Immigration affects everyone! It affects the citizens welcoming immigrants into their country,  as well as the immigrants moving to a new land. And today on Discover the Word, we’re wrapping up our series called “Christians at the Border” with a discussion about how the Bible calls immigrants to be a blessing to their host country. […]

    God’s Word Speaks Into The Issue Of Immigration

    Today, I think you’d find that nearly every country on earth has laws regarding immigration. So it’s not surprising to learn that even ancient Israel did, too. Today, the Discover the Word team continues their series titled “Christians at the Border,” to discover how God’s Word speaks into the complicated, often divisive issue of immigration. […]

    Biblical Figures And Migration

    Here’s a quick challenge, can you think of a biblical figure who was an immigrant? Actually, there are a lot of possible answers! Maybe surprisingly so. And today on Discover the Word, we’ll examine four familiar names and stories, and see what impact they might have on how we think about the issue of immigration. […]

    Migration And The Great Commission

    If any of us look back far enough, we’ll find an ancestor who was an immigrant. And today on Discover the Word, the team examines how the Old Testament reveals that migration is in our DNA! And that has an impact on how we read Jesus’s Great Commission, to go into all the world, and […]

    “Christians At The Border”

    There’s been a lot of focus recently on the issue of immigration, and not just in the U.S. and Canada, but around the world. And while this seems like it’s a modern dilemma, you may be surprised to learn that the Old Testament has a lot to say on the matter. Should that shape how […]

    God with Skin On

    My husband left for a month-long trip, and almost immediately I was overwhelmed by the needs of my job, our house, and our children. A writing deadline loomed. The lawn mower broke. My children were on school break and bored. How would I take care of all of these things on my own? 

    I soon realized I wasn’t on my own. Friends from church showed up to help. Josh came over to fix my lawn mower. John brought me lunch. Cassidy helped with the laundry. Abi invited my kids over to play with hers so I could get my work done.…

    When Jesus Offers To Meet Your Deepest Needs

    Today on Discover the Word, the team continues their discussions on invitations from Jesus we find in the Gospels. Jesus welcomes us to come to Him and drink the living water. The Savior is offering to meet your deepest needs, so don’t ignore it! Tune in today for Discover the Word!

    Scripture Reading And The Community

    Have you ever thought about the fact that just a few hundred years ago almost no one could enjoy “morning devotions”? Widespread personal access to the Bible is a relatively recent privilege! And today on Discover the Word, we’ll see how reading Scripture was originally a community event. Pull up a chair today as together we Discover […]

    Pulling Together

    Why do more than five million people a year pay money to run several miles over an obstacle course where they must ascend vertical walls, slog through mud, and climb up inside a vertical pipe with water pouring down on them? Some see it as a personal challenge to push their limit of endurance or conquer their fears. For others, the attraction is teamwork where competitors help and support each other. One person called it “a no-judgment zone” where people who are strangers will reach out to help each other finish the race (Stephanie Kanowitz, The Washington Post).

    The Bible urges…

    Pulling Together

    Why do more than five million people a year pay money to run several miles over an obstacle course where they must ascend vertical walls, slog through mud, and climb up inside a vertical pipe with water pouring down on them? Some see it as a personal challenge to push their limit of endurance or conquer their fears. For others, the attraction is teamwork where competitors help and support each other. One person called it “a no-judgment zone” where people who are strangers will reach out to help each other finish the race (Stephanie Kanowitz, The Washington Post).

    The Bible urges…

    Loving All

    I worship in a church located in a large, open field—a rare commodity on the island of Singapore (we’re just twenty-five miles long and fifteen miles wide). Some time back, people from abroad who work in my country started gathering on the church property for a picnic every Sunday.

    This evoked a range of responses from fellow churchgoers. Some fretted about the mess the visitors would leave behind. But others saw this as a divine opportunity to extend hospitality to a wonderful group of strangers —without even leaving the church grounds!

    The Israelites must have faced similar issues in their time. After they…

    Fault Lines

    An influx of refugees to our community has led to new growth in area churches. That growth brings challenges. Church members must learn how to welcome these newcomers as they adjust to a strange culture, new language, and different worship styles. All this change can create some awkward situations.

    Misunderstandings and disagreements occur everywhere we find people. Church is no exception. If we don’t handle our differences in a healthy way, they can harden into divisions.

    The early church in Jerusalem was growing when a dispute arose that broke along a cultural fault line. The Greek-speaking Jews (the Hellenists) had a complaint…

    How to Change a Life

    Sometimes our lives can change in a moment through the powerful impact of others. For rock ‘n’ roll legend Bruce Springsteen, it was the work of musical artists that helped him through a difficult childhood and a persistent struggle with depression. He found meaning in his own work through the truth he’d experienced firsthand, that “You can change someone’s life in three minutes with the right song.”

    Like a compelling song, others’ well-chosen words can also give us hope, even change the course of our lives. I’m sure most of us could share stories of a conversation that forever impacted our…