November 18th, 2021 by Carl Buffington
Advent draws us closer and closer into the greatest story ever. It’s a story told and retold in thousands of ways, for literally thousands of years. And with all the ways of telling the tale, it’s critical we get it right.
Bishop Ivan Sikha has built a large ministry in India, and elsewhere, using storytelling. He uses 20 plus stories from the Bible. When he trains his storytellers in telling the stories, he shares them orally and then asks the listeners to repeat them. When they add or delete part of the story, Ivan has them do it again, and again, until it is correct. Thousands have come to know Jesus Christ through these stories. And his ministry in India continues to flourish.
February 3rd, 2021 by Dr. Larry Selig
Israel is a unique country in many ways, not the least of which is its small but varied geography, a veritable land bridge between Asia, Africa and Europe.
If placed on a map of Florida, it would only stretch from Jacksonville in the north to below Melbourne in the south, the Atlantic Ocean on the east and the St. John’s River on the west. It is only 150 miles north to south, and 50 miles wide near Jerusalem.
But while this part of Florida is mainly flat and sandy, Israel has all of the variety of California: snow covered mountains, desert regions below sea level, ocean beaches, fertile valleys, and wilderness areas. In fact, the geography of Israel is sometimes called the “fifth Gospel”.
February 2nd, 2021 by Carl Buffington
“Unless I see the SCARS?”
Over the years I have wondered about Jesus’ scars. It is one way he is known, isn’t it?
It’s not the only way.
February 1st, 2021 by Ruan Humphrey
“Who said it?” I asked.
My cousin and friend Claire responded to my text:
I have no idea who said it. I saw it somewhere and thought, ‘I don’t know about this, let me think.'
The opposite of fear isn't hope.
Both fear and hope are stories we tell ourselves about the future.
The opposite of fear is staying in the now.
January 27th, 2021 by Tracy Harper
From the time I was a small child, I went to church with my family each week.
I participated in Sunday School, VBS, and plenty of other church activities. I learned about God the Father and Jesus His Son.
I dutifully memorized scripture, knew the books of the Bible, and I watched my mother spill tears every Easter as the choir sang the stately old hymn, “He arose! He arose! Hallelujah, Christ arose…”
Even with all that Christian formation, I never really “got it.”
January 27th, 2021 by Sheryl Shaw
My grandparents owned a small service/gas station and motel in the Ozark mountains of Missouri. There was a small general store and their living quarters were a few rooms in the back.
There was a lovely, warm kitchen that you could see into from the general store and there was always something cooking, the aroma enveloping you as you came into the front door of the station.
There was a long counter with stools that twirled and that was where home cooked meals were served to weary travelers.
January 26th, 2021 by Erica Stephenson
Anger. Hopeless. Trust.
Despair. Hope. Confusion. Trust.
For most lament is rarely a straight path. It is a wandering towards God in the midst of pain.
January 26th, 2021 by Sara Buffington
I am about to tell you about one of the most impactful worship experiences of my life. What do you think it was? Can you imagine the scene?
January 25th, 2021 by Christopher Caudle
The wordiest Psalm in the Book of Psalms (and the longest chapter in the Bible) is a song about the Word.
January 19th, 2021 by Carl Buffington
Running out of chores, I tackled my “blessing drawer.”
I’m not sure where, or from whom, I got the idea but when I got a note or a letter that was affirming I tossed it in the bottom drawer of my desk.
Over the years it filled up, that’s not bragging, just saying a lot of years went by, and a week ago with the quarantine at full tilt, it was time to open it.
I dumped them into an empty moving box and settled in.
One by one I read them, often pausing to ponder or cry like when I hit one from our deceased son, AJ.