Prayer (from June 16 message, “A Faith Shaped by Adversity”)

Lord, grant me the ability to rejoice when trials come.

Give me patience to endure under the difficulty.

Allow me the grace to avoid bitterness that comes from hardship.

Provide me the wisdom to see your activity in my life and to believe you are there even when you seem invisible.

Grant me the faith to believe that you are working out everything for my good and that you will someday make all things new.

Amen

Staff Meeting Devotional Sept. 27, 2016

Survivial Mode

Last week I was listening to a podcast that I have gone back and listened to several times. This time of year tends to be very busy and I can get into survival mode. I’m sure many of you are feeling

Staff meeting devotional Jan. 19, 2016

Changed, Not Covered

Snow is a fact of winter here in Bloomington, but one recent snowfall was especially striking. Did you marvel like I did at the snow that sat so picturesquely on all the tree branches? Snow oftentimes blows to the ground, but this time it rested on the trees and covered them in a blanket of beautiful white. The beauty of God’s creation reminded me of God’s gift of saving grace and forgiveness:

Staff meeting devotional Oct. 13, 2015

People of God’s Blessing

In Numbers 6, God spoke to Moses at Mount Sinai. This passage takes place in the second of 40 years of wandering in the wilderness after the Israelite exodus from Egypt. God told Moses to take a census, gave him instructions on how each

Staff Meeting Devotional Sept. 29, 2015

Called to Praise

There’s one kind of praise, an “easy” kind, that springs forth spontaneously from us when we are joyful.  We use the phrase “prayer and thanksgiving” a lot, and this kind of praise actually is thanksgiving.  It acknowledges the source of our joy.  

Staff meeting devotional Sept. 1, 2015

“Stop the Glorification of Busy”

I want to start out and be honest. My personal devotional life lately has been very lacking. I have let myself get caught up in the busyness of this time of year and have a nice list of excuses. A friend of mine posted this quote on social media the other day and it HIT me between the eyes: “Stop the glorification of busy.” Wow! I am so guilty of this. Am I really too busy to find time each day to spend with Him!?! And if I am, then I seriously need to make a shift in my priorities.

Self-Righteous Service vs. True Service (from Aug. 9 message)

9 Points to consider as we engage in works of compassion (from Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline):

  • Self-righteous service relies on human effort, whereas true service flows out of a relationship with God.
  • Self-righteous service is impressed with the “big deal,” whereas true service makes no distinction between the large and the small.
  • Self-righteous service requires external rewards, whereas true service rests contented in hiddenness.
  • Self-righteous service is concerned with results, whereas true service is free of the need to calculate them.
  • Self-righteous service picks and chooses whom to serve, whereas true service is indiscriminate in its ministry.
  • Self-righteous service  is affected by moods and whims, whereas true service ministers on the basis of need.
  • Self-righteous service is temporary, whereas true service is ongoing.
  • Self-righteous service is insensitive, whereas true service withholds as freely as it gives.
  • Self-righteous service fractures community, whereas true service builds community.