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Saturday, February 29, 2020

Leap Day! Leap Year! An extra day!

Joshua 10:12-14 (ESV)
12 At that time Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord gave the Amorites over to the sons of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel,
“Sun, stand still at Gibeon,
    and moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”
13 And the sun stood still, and the moon stopped,
    until the nation took vengeance on their enemies.
Is this not written in the Book of Jashar? The sun stopped in the midst of heaven and did not hurry to set for about a whole day. 14 There has been no day like it before or since, when the Lord heeded the voice of a man, for the Lord fought for Israel.

Leap Day! Leap Year! An extra day! What would you do with an extra day?

Joshua’s prayer for an extra day is an amazing Bible account.

The prayer was a dynamic mixture of God’s determined will and mankind’s bold request. The result was a miracle.

The Lord fought for Israel and protected her against her enemies, the Amorites. The Lord was with Joshua and the troops, He even rained hail down on the enemies (Joshua 10:11). The hail killed more Amorites than the sword!

That day was special. There has been no day like it. But what was more special than the sun stilled was the prayer prayed! There has never been another day where the Lord heeded the voice of a man like that.

Joshua wanted more time, an extra day, to fulfill the Lord’s determined will. The Lord fought for Israel and Joshua fought for the Lord. It’s exciting to see that when the Lord reveals His will, and His people are eager to obey, the only thing yet required is the time to do it. And God supplies the time!

For New Testament Christians, the apostles teach us to consider each day as time God has given to serve Him. Time is a valuable and limited resource. “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is,” Ephesians 5:15-17.

It’s safe to say that Joshua understood what the will of the Lord was in his day.

So, it’s not beyond Christians to understand what the will of the Lord is either. The Scriptures teach us (2 Timothy 3:16-17). What remains for us to attain is an attitude of faith like Joshua. An attitude that says, “I will spend today serving God. I will not procrastinate but I will ask God to give me all the time necessary to accomplish His will. And if I get another day – even an extra day – I will use it in the same way: for the glory of God.”

Make the most of your leap day, make the most of every day!

Dear Lord, we pray that we would use the time You give us wisely. Help us to always look for ways that we can bring glory to You in how we use our time. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Friday, February 28, 2020

Time to clean house?

Mark 1:3 (ESV)
The voice of one crying in the wilderness:
    ‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
    make his paths straight,’”

Clean House is a reality television show about three trained specialists who go into homes that are a mess.

In each episode, there is clutter everywhere. In some homes there is so much junk that visitors must remain standing because the furniture is covered with all kinds of stuff.

The Clean House specialists face the challenge of convincing the residents to get rid of their junk. And the strange thing often is—even though it makes their lives miserable, they don’t want to get rid of the clutter!

You and I can be the same way in our relationship with God and our neighbors.

We say we want to clean things up, and we can see what’s got to go. But so often we cling to things that make life miserable for us and for others.

In the opening verses of Mark, we meet John the Baptist. John was a specialist whose task was to get people to “clean house” and prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ. John’s message was simple: “Repent!” To repent means to turn back to God and confess our sins, clear the junk out of our lives, and do what God’s Word teaches.

Is it time for us to clean house?

Let’s ask God to help us get rid of the clutter that distracts us from truly serving him.

Dear Lord, forgive us help us to see our sin and dislike it. Help us to turn back to You today. And may your Holy Spirit cleanse us from top to bottom. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Day of rest

Colossians 3:17 (ESV)
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

God’s invitation to pause from work doesn’t mean work is bad. Work is not to be seen strictly as a duty but, rather, as one of our main ways to serve God. When we do all our work as working for the Lord Jesus, then God is worshiped and receives the glory! In fact, one of the reasons God calls us to keep Sabbath is so that we will be effective in our work the other six days of the week!

There was once a man who challenged another to an all-day wood chopping contest. The challenger worked hard all day, barely taking a break. The other man, however, had a leisurely lunch and took several breaks to rest.

As evening fell, the first man was angered by the results. “Every time I checked,” he said, “you were taking a rest, and yet you ended up chopping more wood than I did.”

“But you didn’t notice,” said the winner, “that I was sharpening my axe each time I sat down.”

God calls us to stop working once a week so that we can “sharpen our axe.” He calls us to Sabbath so that we can be of greater service and of greater benefit in all our work—in our jobs and at home and with our church and family.

Dear Lord, thank You for the gift of work. Help us to learn how to regularly pause so that we are better equipped to serve You, bringing You glory in all our labors. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Tuesday, February 25, 2020


Acts 3:16 (ESV)
And his name—by faith in his name—has made this man strong whom you see and know, and the faith that is through Jesus has given the man this perfect health in the presence of you all.

How in this world can someone get into trouble for helping to restore a crippled man to health? The Jewish leaders didn't care about the wonderful healing of the man who had begged every day at the temple gate. His healing meant nothing to them, because it did not happen under their control. They didn't even consider that this healing displayed the glory of God. They couldn't see beyond the problem they had with the name under which the healing took place. To the Jewish leaders, Jesus was not the Messiah because he did not free the people politically from Roman tyranny.

Theological squabbles often lead to spiritual blindness and dryness. Why did such a powerful healing not touch the Jewish leaders? Because they had closed themselves to the message and mission of Christ.

Why don't we hear of more miracles like these today? Most of us do not doubt that God could perform miracles if he chose to. But have we perhaps allowed secularism and theological pride to affect our teaching and belief about miracles?

Today's story teaches that Jesus' name had the power to heal. Today the name of Jesus still has the power to save the soul and heal the body. Our belief or unbelief doesn't change the healing power of his name. But have we changed? Do we believe in that power?

Dear Lord, forgive us if we have not acknowledged the power of Your name in our lives and in the world today. Heal us of spiritual blindness, we pray. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Monday, February 24, 2020

How our Lord meets us today

John 5:5 (ESV)
One man was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years.

Picture the scene: a pool of water surrounded by covered porches. Bethesda was known as a place of healing. It was often crowded with destitute people who were blind, lame, and paralyzed. Among them lay a man who had been lame for thirty-eight years.

Jesus asked the man, "Do you want to get well?"

On the surface, the answer would seem obvious. Of course, the man wanted to be well! But Jesus was asking a deeper question. He was probing the man's heart. Did he really want to be made whole--transformed inside and out, healed in body, mind, and soul?

Jesus spoke to him a second time: "Get up! Pick up your mat and walk."

From a human standpoint, it was impossible for the man to get up. To others who were listening, this may even have sounded a bit cruel. But at that moment the healing power of Jesus touched the man, filling his body, mind, and spirit with wholeness. As Jesus healed the man, he was saying, in effect, "Pick up your mat and be out of here. You never have to think of coming back to this kind of life again."

The steps Jesus took in healing this man give us an example of how our Lord meets us today. He probes our hearts, commands the impossible, provides the power, and tells us to leave our old life behind. What a Savior!

Dear Lord, we surrender everything to You. Lift us up, make us stand, and never let us slip back into ways of sin. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Now is the time to share the good news

Mark 1:15 (ESV)
And saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”

Peter the Great led the Russian Empire from 1682 until his death in 1725. While he reigned, he expanded the empire into eastern Europe, initiated a cultural revolution, and built the Russian military into a formidable force.

Napoleon Bonaparte was the emperor of France from 1804 to 1814. Through a series of military victories and key alliances, he expanded the influence of France throughout Europe. He changed the political structure of France and influenced the development of legal codes around the world.

Jesus Christ was born in a small town in Judea, a nation that lived under Roman occupation throughout his lifetime. He never commanded an army. He did not travel outside of a small region stretching from Judea to Galilee. His followers were an unrefined group who lacked the courage to stay with him when he was arrested. When he died, it looked as if his influence had ended.

Today, the Russian and French empires have long ago fallen from their peak of influence, but the kingdom of Jesus continues to expand. Millions gather every week to worship him. Organizations bearing his name provide relief, food, medical help, and education. His good news is proclaimed on every continent in countless languages.

Are you part of this kingdom? Are you sharing the good news?

Dear Lord, stir our hearts so that we too will participate in spreading Your kingdom vision and renewing Your world. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Monday, February 17, 2020


Hebrews 1:2 (ESV)
But in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.

When we are away from family and friends, it’s good to keep in touch with them. Today we can do that by phone, text message, e-mail, Facebook—and even by the old method of sending postcards or letters.

God’s message comes to us in his Word, the Bible. And the Word of God has become flesh in the person of Jesus Christ (John 1:1-5, 9-14). As believers today, we can now hear and receive and live by the Word of God, and we experience something of the life God intended for us when he created the universe.

In the Old Testament God spoke through the prophets, but that communication was often limited to the situations of the people in those days. Prophets were spokespeople for God; Jesus is the Son of God. Prophets grasped part of the mind of God; Jesus is the mind of God. What more can be said than what God has spoken to us through his Son?

There are many ways in which God continues to communicate to us through Jesus, by the power of his Spirit. Today God’s Word is proclaimed all over the world. May people receive it for what it really is: good news that opens us to new life with God. Daily we read Scripture not simply for information but to hear how God is directing and sustaining us through his Son. As we follow Jesus, we also learn to pray and work, spreading the good news of salvation to build up the kingdom of God.

Dear Lord, speak to us so that we may speak in living echoes of your tone.  Bring your Word to reach into all our hearts, that we may live by the truth. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Friday, February 14, 2020

The middle in the chocolate

Psalm 34:8 (ESV)
Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!
    Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!

Everywhere you look near Valentine's Day, there's chocolate: boxes of chocolate in all the stores, chocolate on tv promising to be the only love you need, chocolate girl scout cookies--CHOCOLATE! I think that's what led me to remember the famous quote from Forrest Gump: "Life is like a box of chocolates...you never know what you're gonna get."

In reality, that phrase can be true in many ways. We wake up every morning completely unsure of what the day may hold for us. We've made our plans. Sometimes they even happen the way we make them. But we never know for sure, do we?

The days that come with caramel in the middle are my favorite. The ones with the strawberry goo are just so so--but the ones with coconut--YUCK! I'd rather go back to bed. Then there's the days where tragedy or difficult times come out of nowhere, and the chocolate sits in the pantry untouched...there's no sweetness to be had in those moments.

God knows that life as it pertains to circumstances is uncertain for us. That's why He comforts us and reminds us so many times that He is our constant companion, our steadfast friend, our consistently loving God and Savior. He doesn't keep promises the way we do:

You see, no matter what chocolate we are "in the middle of" right now, He is there--with the certainty of His promise today as well as His hope of heaven in the future

We who have run for our very lives to God have every reason to grab the promised hope with both hands and never let go. It's an unbreakable spiritual lifeline, reaching past all appearances right to the very presence of God where Jesus.

I love the visual picture of grabbing on to Him with both hands as He runs ahead of me to the Father. That makes me able to get up today and praise Him for whatever comes my way. This faith, this confidence, this hope is our unbreakable spiritual lifeline--HIS love for us no matter what, when, how or why. Let's binge on His priceless box of chocolates today...the sweetest and most satisfying of them all.

Dear Lord, we thank You for Your promise that You are always there with us no matter the chocolate filling we are going through. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Love God and love others

Matthew 22:40 (ESV)
On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.

None of us likes to be upstaged by anyone. It makes us feel dumb, especially if others are watching. No one wants to be embarrassed. The Pharisees were not going to be stomped on by some “fly by night” rabbi named Jesus. They were the real scholars; they had been to the best schools, studied under the best professors, and graduated at the top of their class. The Pharisees had the question they believed would stop Jesus in his tracks: “Which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” They thought, “This will trick him, and then people will know that he isn’t as smart as he thinks he is.”

The Pharisees based their lives on acquiring knowledge to boost their egos and reputations. Jesus used his knowledge to bring sinners to the Father’s love. The most important answer to the question is quite simple: love God and love others. The Pharisees were not loving God for God’s sake, but for their sake. They loved God with their minds but refused to love people God’s way.

How would you answer the question if you were asked? Are you loving God with all of your passion, intelligence, and strength? It requires a childlike faith in the One who first loved us. Are you loving your neighbors on your block and at work Jesus’ way? It requires experiencing the abundant love that Jesus has lavished on us. It’s a question worth answering!

Dear Lord, we struggle to love You with all are heart, soul, and mind. Help me to love you and others your way today. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

God can give peace

Philippians 4:7 (ESV)
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

There was a time in my youth, when elephant jokes were all the rage, a friend challenged me not to think of pink elephants for the next five minutes. “I bet ya can’t keep ’em out of your mind,” he said.

But Christ’s followers, says Paul, can and should direct their thoughts, in the power of Christ, to things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy. Martin Luther said about temptations, “You cannot keep birds from flying over your head, but you can keep them from building a nest in your hair.” The peace of God should guard our hearts and minds.

There have been times when I was oppressed by desolate thoughts going around in vicious circles. And I have seen people walking the streets snarling to themselves, tortured by some nameless horror.

Forgiveness from God is the beginning of breaking the vicious circle. In turn, when we follow Christ’s command to forgive those who have wronged us, we are freed from the chains of lifelong grudges and bitter thoughts. And it helps to know that the love of the Creator of the universe surrounds us. That knowledge changes the world we inhabit, lifts us out of the slimy pit, and puts a new song in our mouth (Psalm 40:2-3). A life of joy and peace dawns after we leave the dark night of sin that enslaved us.

Dear Lord, pour the healing peace of the Holy Spirit on our troubled souls so that we may we be a blessing for others who seek peace and refuge with You. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Truth is important

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another.

Carl had a steady job, and his income was just enough to cover his family’s expenses. He also had a debit card that he loved to use for lots of little things like snacks and drinks. His wife, Becky, who was trying to balance the family budget, would often ask how much he was spending. “I don’t remember; I forgot to get the receipt,” he would answer. His lack of honesty about the money was causing serious friction in their marriage.

In any relationship, there can be no trust without truth. Our society’s legal system cannot function without people being sworn to “tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” Suspicion and frustration replace peace between people when they tell lies and break promises.

Truth is precious to followers of Jesus Christ. He is the source and substance of truth from God.

The first truth we need to know is that, although God created us to love and glorify him, we are sinful and unable to save ourselves from eternal destruction. The second truth is that God gives forgiveness and everlasting life through the death and resurrection of his Son, Jesus. The third truth is that once we have believed in Jesus, we must walk in truth, being honest with one another.

Have you ever damaged a relationship by lying? How important is the truth to you?

Dear Lord, we believe that You are the way, the truth, and the life for us. Teach us how to speak the truth in love always. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Debt of love

Romans 13:8 (ESV)
Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.

If we are trying to live the Christian life and we fill it with Christian things—Christian books, conferences, music, movies—there may be something missing. If we leave no room in our life to be inconvenienced by service to others, we are missing a vital part of Christlike living. What we do, how we live, and how we treat others comes down to a matter of love. Paul notes this in our passage today, describing it as a permanent debt we owe—a debt owed every day.

Love involves more than an action shown to another person. Love consists of an underlying attitude and mindset that motivates our actions toward others. It’s not an attitude reserved only for fellow believers; it’s also for everyone who is not part of the community of believers. It is an ongoing theme that Paul continues to talk about in many of his ­letters.

Pursue love today. Let it guide the way you think. Let it be evident in your patience and kindness. Let it lead you toward forgiveness, truthfulness, and endurance. In everything you think about today, and everything you say and do today, let love be the motivation. Filled with God’s love, we can’t help overflowing with love and care for others.

Dear Lord, help us to love others because we are filled with Your love. Enable us to give this gift regardless of how we have been treated; may we follow Jesus’ example in all we do. In the Name of Jesus,  Amen.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Spreading His grace

Acts 8:30 (ESV)

So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, “Do you understand what you are reading?”

Believers and nonbelievers both hear the word "witnessing" and want to run. Many church people will bake a pie, work a sound booth, change diapers in nursery, even clean the bathroom, but they don't want to "witness." If you attend a neighborhood barbecue and say the word "evangelism" a bit too loudly, you just might not receive an invitation next time.

Philip had a lot of reasons not to walk up to the Ethiopian and his chariot:

·       Philip wasn't Ethiopian; they were worlds apart culturally.

·       Philip was out of his league. The Ethiopian was a high government official, the secretary of the treasury.

·       Philip's friend Stephen had just gotten killed as a result of "witnessing."

Yet Philip obeyed. Why? Maybe he heard the Spirit whisper, "I will give you the words to tell about me." We do know God prepared the Ethiopian's heart, leading him to read a text about Jesus and to ask Philip what it meant. And God caused the man to believe.

If God leads, will you follow? If we think of "witnessing" less as marketing and more as listening--to God and to the people he puts in our path--maybe our courage will grow. And maybe God will use us to help change someone's life for eternity.

Dear Lord, please prepare people's hearts with earnest, spiritual questions and lead them to us. Please also give us the answers we need in order to share your truth and love. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020


Philippians 3:8 (NLT)
Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ.

On our roadways we find lots of garbage—empty and broken bottles, plastic bags, wrappers, broken pieces of stuff we can barely identify. All of it was once useful but is no longer needed or is just broken or lost. Though it ought to be cleaned up, it’s clear that no one really needs it.

Paul writes about many things that he once thought he needed—for example, his flawless Jewish heritage. According to the law of God, this Pharisee was about as righteous as anyone could be. But Paul now considers all this “a loss.” This is the same word used in Acts 27:21 for a ship’s cargo that is tossed into the sea in a vicious storm. It has value, but compared to saving a person’s life, it is, as Paul bluntly calls it, “garbage.” Far more valuable, he says, is “to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings.”

Often we also place too much value on the wrappings of our faith and miss the real gift. Maybe it’s our status as a church leader, or our membership in a popular church. Or maybe we think our own gifts and talents are better than others’. In comparison to really knowing Jesus, these other things are merely garbage. Of course, we shouldn’t toss them out, but we must place them at the foot of the cross, asking Jesus to infuse our church, our lives, and our ministry with his love, purpose, and power.

Dear Lord, if we have placed too much importance on the wrappings of our faith. Please fill our lives with your love and power. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Sin and God's grace

Psalm 19:12-13 (ESV)
12 Who can discern his errors?
    Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
13 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
    let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
    and innocent of great transgression.

Psalm 19:12-14 mentions three kinds of sin—errors, hidden faults, and willful sins.

Errors—sins we commit and are not aware of. David says, “Who can discern [one’s] errors?” We can commit error-sins for years and not be aware of them, unless someone courageously and lovingly points them out.

Hidden faults—sins we commit that we are aware of, but try to hide, hoping nobody catches on. David prays, “Forgive my hidden faults.”

Willful sins—attitudes, thoughts, words, actions that we know are wrong, and yet we do them anyway. David asks, “Keep your servant also from willful sins.”

But there is something encouraging here also. Though David knows he is a sinner, he is also still God’s servant.

Even willful sin doesn’t exclude us from God’s love. God’s grace never gives up on us! “Where sin increased, grace increased all the more” (Romans 5:20). Despite our sin, we are still God’s servants. Maybe that’s why David asks, “May [my sins] not rule over me.” God’s servants have one ruler—and it ought not to be willful sin.

So David prays, “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight.” And of whom does he make that request? “O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.”

Dear Lord, we thank You that our sin unintentional or willful, hidden or known is never too great for your discerning, forgiving, keeping grace. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Sunday, February 2, 2020

We all have a Super Bowl

1 Corinthians 10:14 (ESV)
Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.

When the NFL season begins, most teams have their sights set on winning the Super Bowl. Coaches motivate their players to work hard, so they can accomplish the major feat of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.

Players are judged differently after they win a ring, and the value placed on championships is immense. There are plenty of players preparing to step on the field tonight who have yet to experience the excitement of winning on the largest stage.

These guys have been dreaming about this moment since playing Pop Warner as kids. When listening to them talk about the Super Bowl, they obviously want to win so bad. They realize the monumental impact it would have on their lives, and are consumed with doing what it takes to become Super Bowl Champions.

Of course, this requires enormous dedication with countless hours in the film room and on the practice field. Little else matters and they don’t want anything getting in the way of the opportunity to grasp that coveted trophy.

The sports world, and even society, have elevated the Super Bowl to unbelievable heights. The standard of success in winning the Lombardi Trophy is so important that it has become an idol for those involved. It’s worshipped in a way that requires a full commitment from those pursuing it.

As easy as it is for an NFL player to get wrapped up in desiring a Super Bowl ring, we must also be aware of the “shiny objects” in life that are fighting for our full attention.

If we aren’t careful, we can fall into the trap of idolizing anything from a dream home to a new car to moving up the corporate ladder. All of our thoughts, conversations, and efforts go toward what we desire so much. That could even be getting married, having a baby, or making it to retirement.

Just like the Super Bowl, these things aren’t bad. But when they become our idols and our total focus, they replace God as our greatest love and devotion. We’re chasing satisfaction in something else.

If we’re consumed by acquiring that “one thing,” or excessively driven to making something happen in our lives, we can end up devaluing our relationship with God.

Our own “Super Bowl win” becomes the ultimate prize, while our worship and commitment to God gets pushed aside.

The Bible clearly addresses this in 1 Corinthians 10:14 (AMP):“Therefore, my beloved, run [keep far, far away] from [any sort of] idolatry [and that includes loving anything more than God, or participating in anything that leads to sin and enslaves the soul].”

We can love God and follow Jesus and still “win Super Bowls.” But, we must constantly check our hearts to determine our motivation and what we consider most important.

Dear Lord, we confess there are times that we want something so badly that it consumes all of my thoughts and efforts, and as a result, we are not focused on You. We don’t want to love anything more than You or allow anything to become more important than a full commitment to You. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Story time

Luke 15:20 (ESV)
And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.

Nothing thrills kids more than when they can curl up on the couch with their grandfather as he reads stories to them. Stories are something that help us all learn and imagine and wonder. Jesus told great stories, and many of them are parables about living as part of God’s family in this world.

One of the best-known parables of Jesus is this story in Luke 15 about the lost son, often called the “prodigal son.” But this story could also be called the parable of the loving Father.

A young man looking for adventure takes his dad’s money (his inheritance) and leaves home. He wastes the money foolishly and loses everything. He learns that the adventure he wanted didn’t really satisfy, and that people can be shallow and harsh. He also learns what it means to be hungry. The young man turns toward home, not really believing anyone will want him. But he is willing to work as a hired servant. What he discovers is the love and forgiveness of his father and a genuine, gracious welcome.

There are times in our lives when we crave adventure. We jump into something that we think will bring us pleasure, only to find ourselves alone and afraid. As he tells this parable, Jesus invites us all to come home to God’s forgiveness.

Have you experienced the Lord’s love and forgiveness?

Dear Lord, thank You for forgiveness and for the reminder that You open your arms wide and run to us. Help us to turn around and come home. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.