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    Silence

    Skittish chickens scattered as relief trucks clattered past the weathered huts of the village. Barefoot children stared. Traffic on this rain-ravaged “road” was rare.

    Suddenly, a walled mansion loomed into view of the convoy. It was the mayor’s house—although he didn’t live in it. His people lacked basic necessities, while he lounged in luxury in a distant city.

    Such unfairness angers us. It angered God’s prophet too. When Habakkuk saw rampant oppression he asked, “How long, Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?” (Hab. 1:2). But God had noticed, and He said, “Woe to him who piles up stolen…

    The Lighthouse

    By its very existence, a ministry center in Rwanda called the “Lighthouse” symbolizes redemption. It sits on land where during the genocide in 1994 the country’s president owned a grand home. This new structure, however, has been erected by Christians as a beacon of light and hope. Housed there is a Bible institute to raise up a new generation of Christian leaders, along with a hotel, restaurant, and other services for the community. Out of the ashes has come new life.

    Those who built the Lighthouse look to Jesus as their source of hope and redemption. When Jesus went to the…

    When A Friend is Suspected of Rape and Murder

    I was about to turn in for the night; it was almost 11pm. As usual, I gave my phone a final check. My good friend, Linda, had just sent me a flurry of messages. What I was about to read was horrific and heart-breaking.

    Who Are You Defending?

    When Kathleen’s teacher called her to the front of the grammar class to analyze a sentence, she panicked. As a recent transfer student, she hadn’t learned that aspect of grammar. The class laughed derisively.

    Instantly the teacher sprang to her defense. “She can out-write any of you any day of the week!” he explained. Many years later, Kathleen gratefully recalled the moment: “I started that day to try to write as well as he said I could.” Eventually, Kathleen Parker would win a Pulitzer Prize for her writing.

    As did Kathleen’s teacher, Jesus identified with the defenseless and vulnerable. When His disciples…

    Why Does God Allow Some to Suffer More Than Others?

    At a recent political conference, I had the opportunity to meet individuals from different countries, many of whom were currently living amid political uncertainty. Listening to the struggles they faced in their own countries, I was intrigued.

    Can’t Die But Once

    Born into slavery and badly treated as a young girl, Harriet Tubman (c. 1822–1913) found a shining ray of hope in the Bible stories her mother told. The account of Israel’s escape from slavery under Pharaoh showed her a God who desired freedom for His people.

     

    Eventually Harriet slipped over the Maryland state line and out of slavery. She couldn’t remain content, however, knowing so many were still trapped in captivity. So she led more than a dozen rescue missions back into slave states, dismissing the personal danger. “I can’t die but once,” she said.

     

    Harriet knew the truth of the statement:…

    Relief for the Troubled

    One of my favorite scenes in literature occurs when a feisty aunt confronts an evil stepfather over the abuse of her nephew, David Copperfield. This scene takes place in Charles Dickens’ novel named after the main character.

    When David Copperfield shows up at his aunt’s house, his stepfather is not far behind. Aunt Betsy Trotwood is not pleased to see the malicious Mr. Murdstone. She recounts a list of offenses and does not let him slither out of his responsibility for each act of cruelty. Her charges are so forceful and truthful that Mr. Murdstone—a normally aggressive person—finally leaves without a…

    God With Us

    No matter what you face in life, the decisions you make determine the course of your journey. Where can you find clear direction to help you make wise choices? In God With Us, author Alice Mathews examines the decisions made by Eve and Mary that continue to impact the world from generation to generation. Discover from […]

    Aylan’s Silent Scream

    It was a picture that painted a thousand words: a photograph of a three-year-old Syrian boy, lying face down on a Turkish beach. His name was Aylan Kurdi. Last week, the world recoiled in horror and anguish over images of his lifeless body washed up on a beach in Bodrum.

    Speak Up

    When I hear stories about young people who have been bullied, I notice there are always at least two levels of hurt. The first and most obvious comes from the mean-spirited nature of those actually doing the bullying. That’s terrible on its own. But there’s another, deeper hurt that may end up being even more damaging than the first: The silence of everyone else.

    It hurts the one being bullied because they’re stunned that no one will help. That often makes bullies more brazen, leading them to intensify their meanness. Worse, it heightens the embarrassment, false shame, and loneliness of the…

    Jesus and the Rohingya Refugees

    Imagine being stranded at sea for more than a month without food and water. Packed into boats with hundreds of others, and with dwindling supplies, you have to drink urine in order to survive. The dead are thrown overboard. That is exactly what some 2,000 refugees are facing in the Bay of Bengal now.

    Hope

    Discover how you can strengthen your faith and trust in God, even in the midst of challenging times.

    Out of the Ashes

    During hardship and trouble, tough questions often arise: Where is God? How do I respond to difficulties? Is God both good and all-powerful? In the Discovery Series booklet Out of the Ashes by Bill Crowder, you’ll explore Job’s struggle with the problem of suffering. Through Job’s story, discover how you can trust God despite unanswered...

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