Lent: Day Sixteen

Lent: Day Sixteen

Recently I was reading a book that I had just picked up. As I read, I came across a quote that made me quite uncomfortable. Not because it was in some way false or misleading, but because it was so convicting to me personally. The quote was this: “Here is a general principle: your attitude toward God will be revealed in your worst human relationships…

Lent: Day Fifteen

Lent: Day Fifteen

Earlier this year I was preparing for a big science test. I had been working hard and finally felt ready to take it. Before I started, I decided to read the proverb of the day (Proverbs 17). When I read verse three, I thought it was ironic that the verse talked about testing as I was about to take one. I thought maybe the Lord was telling me to relax. The silver, gold, and the heart are all tested to reveal what is truly there…

Lent: Day Fourteen

Lent: Day Fourteen

In 2018, my wife Hope and I were going through some really hard times. Sparing some details, I would say that I was being deceived by Satan and was convinced that what I was doing was not really a sin, and that God was ok with it. It was through the faithful prayers of many that God’s light appeared bright through the darkness and caused me to repent…

Lent: Day Thirteen

Lent: Day Thirteen

The final segment of Jesus’ earthly saga is about to begin. He knows what lies ahead and it causes him to be distressed of soul, even to the point of death. He knows this is the plan God has ordained for him, but it is difficult to imagine Jesus so humanly distraught to the point of asking God to take it away from him…

Lent: Day Twelve

Lent: Day Twelve

I began to go about my morning routine, coffee in hand, checking my email. I was caught off guard at an email sent to me by an individual I had struggled with in the past. The email implied things, but nothing absolute, and within seconds I was upset. My emotions went spiraling out of control and I made assumptions into facts, which led me to anger…

Lent: Day Eleven

Lent: Day Eleven

A hero of mine died this past month. He wasn’t anyone famous. What made Jim a hero to me was that you could see Christ in his actions, hear Christ in his voice, and see Christ’s love in his eyes. He experienced God’s love deeply and felt it was his calling to share this love. He grew old with more dignity and continued service to others than I have ever witnessed…

Lent: Day Ten

Lent: Day Ten

This has been my prayer for years. However, this year it became a challenge; one I needed to really pray about and keep before me as I serve the Lord. As I went into teaching as a long-term substitute at North Iowa Community Schools this year, I didn’t know from day to day how long I was going to be there…

Lent: Day Six

Lent: Day Six

I was reading a Billy Graham devotional from years ago, and came across something significant. Did you know that our first astronauts, while being trained for their moon flights, were required to give twenty answers to the query, “Who are you?” Take the same test yourself. When you have made your list and run out of things to add, ask yourself if you have truly answered. Do you really know who you are?...

Lent: Day Five

Lent: Day Five

Not too long ago I was in a rough spot with my faith, feeling very unhealthy in my walk with the Lord and struggling to even want to spend time in his Word or in prayer. There were a few things going on in my life at the time that led me to this point, but…

Lent: Day Four

Lent: Day Four

It was the perfect sledding day; mid-30s with the sun shining. As my two young boys and I trekked down to our neighbor’s backyard in full snow gear, I wondered what kind of hill we would find. As we pulled our sleds around the corner to the backyard, a gorgeous scene came into view. Multiple backyards concaved into a perfect toddler-sized hill, quiet and far from traffic. The glistening snow was untouched and the tall, dark, old trees made a canopy above us. It took my breath away…

Lent: Day Three

Lent: Day Three

Seven years ago, we moved to Forest City.  We were transitioning from a place we knew well and were comfortable. We had a solid church family, close friends and mentors from college. I didn’t know what Forest City had to offer or why God purposed to bring us here. I did know I wanted to keep growing in a community that I could trust…

Lent: Day One

Lent: Day One

After three years of ministry—preaching, teaching, healing, and casting out demons—Jesus began to walk a resolute path that would lead him to Calvary’s Hill. Jesus’ death on the cross was no accident or miscalculation, but it would be the culmination of the his greatest work and mission, one that he began before the foundation of the earth (Rev 13:8)…