“If you died tonight, what would you say to God to get Him to let you into His heaven?”

I had opened the front door to find two women standing there. I think they may have introduced themselves, and possibly told what church they represented. But then one of them said this line. This memorized line.

My first thought? What a confrontational thing to say!

My second thought? This is what it feels like to be on the other side of the door. Continue reading ““If you died tonight, what would you say to God to get Him to let you into His heaven?””

Glory, glory, glory

Those Corinthians were recalcitrants. (That’s one of my current favorite words.)

When Paul wrote II Corinthians, he was having trouble in pretty much every conceivable area of his life. The  influential Jewish leaders, who were the self-professed enemies of Christ, were nearly killing him every chance they got. The Christians (those recalcitrant Corinthians) didn’t trust him. Even the weather seemed to be against him.  That’s why at one point he said he was “troubled on every side.” Continue reading “Glory, glory, glory”

On holiness and human waste

Do you think your verbal expressions are justified? You rather enjoy the inadvertent blush of some less-trendy peers or the blanch of the older generation? And of course you have strong feelings, so you need strong expressions to express them.

And this is part of our freedom in Christ, isn’t it? And after all, these are only words.

They’re only words. That’s what I was told by my eighth-grade teacher when I spoke to her about the profanities being uttered all around me. Only words. Continue reading “On holiness and human waste”

No more night of the living dead

“Mama, Grandma’s eyes are open, but she’s breathing like she’s asleep.”

“Thank you darling.” I dropped what I was doing and hastened to Grandma’s bedroom, where she lay, resting between death and life.

I waved my hand in front of the unresponsive eyes. I put my hand on the unresponsive hand.  I listened to the long, labored breathing . . . until it ceased. Continue reading “No more night of the living dead”

Broken wall, torn curtain

At the end of November, 1989, we welcomed Stephen Davis into the world.

At the very same time, the Berlin wall was coming down. I remember watching it on television—me, the young mother who had been suffering with debilitating morning sickness, exhausted by my pregnancy, trying to keep up with an energetic two-and-a-half year old—watching the jubilant crowds chipping away pieces of that notorious wall, and asking my husband, “What in the world is happening?”

What in the world. Continue reading “Broken wall, torn curtain”

The trump card of Romans 7

It happens all the time. It happened to my daughter not long ago. She was in a group of young people having a devotional Bible study, she mentioned a Scripture about how Christians can live in victory, probably referencing something along the lines of Philippians 4:13 (“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”), and the response she received came back as “Well, yes, BUT . . .”

Romans 7. Continue reading “The trump card of Romans 7”

That I may know Him . . .

In Philippians 3 Paul expressed his longing to know the treasure that was his Savior. . . .

Few can draw a word picture like that master wordsmith, C.H. Spurgeon. This is only slightly adapted from a sermon of his, painting a word picture of what it means to desire to know Christ.

Imagine that you’re living in the age of the Roman emperors. You’ve been captured by Roman soldiers and dragged from your native country; you’ve been sold for a slave, stripped, whipped, branded, imprisoned, and treated with shameful cruelty. At last you are appointed to die in the amphitheater, to make sport for a tyrant. The populace assemble with delight. There they are, tens of thousands of them, gazing down from the living sides of the capacious Colosseum. You stand alone, armed only with a single dagger—a poor defense against gigantic beasts. A ponderous door rises, and out rushes a huge lion. Continue reading “That I may know Him . . .”