As we enter this time of year, I am reminded of how God chose to show up in such an incredible and unexpected way. For starters, the Messiah came at a very unique time in history.
Life was bleak and dark for the people living in Palestine 2,000 years ago. The Roman Empire was at its height and dominated the world through oppression. People felt hopeless, as if God had turned His back on them.
Then one day, the Angel Gabriel appeared to a young teenaged girl. Mary, who was probably about 15 at the time, had her whole life ahead of her. She was engaged to Joseph, a carpenter, a young man who was probably about 18 or 19. Mary was greatly anticipating her wedding day, a day she dreamt about for so long. [click to continue…]
In the movie, Hugo, there’s a great scene where Hugo and his friend Isabelle are looking at the automaton, a mechanical wind-up figure that Hugo was trying to repair. You see, this was Hugo’s mission – to get the mechanical man to work again, something he and his father worked on together.
But tragedy struck and Hugo’s father died in a fire. Now, more than ever, Hugo had to get the broken mechanical figure to work again. The problem was, he didn’t have all the right parts. [click to continue…]
What does it mean to be devoted?
Devotion/devoted is defined as: “Commitment to some purpose; feelings of ardent love.”
I’ve been thinking about devotion lately, namely, what I am devoted to.
If I’m honest with myself, I am too often devoted to myself: my comforts, my needs, my attempts to arrange my life to avoid pain.
Notice the operative word is “my.” And that’s the problem. When I devote my attention and time to myself, I miss so much of what God is doing and what’s going on with others. [click to continue…]
Carl had a lot of influence on me and other kids on the street I lived on growing up. All of us would gather together to play basketball or street hockey or just goof around, and Carl would say, “Hey, you guys want to do this…?”
And “this” always meant something that could get us in trouble: like crawling through sewer tunnels or sneaking onto forbidden property up the hill.
And every time Carl would present his plan, I knew it wasn’t a good idea. My mom noticed it too, and would say, “Be careful of Carl. I don’t trust him.” [click to continue…]
Think about these phrases you’ve heard at some point in your life:
You can do anything you want.
Believe in yourself.
Don’t let them see you sweat (i.e., don’t be weak).
Don’t rely on anyone but yourself.
So what’s the problem with these ideas? Well, a lot, really. First off: [click to continue…]