There are many of Jesus’ sayings and teachings from the New Testament that are frequently misunderstood. Whether the verses are taken out of context or the understanding behind them is simply harder to uncover, Jesus’ words can seem harsh or backward from how Christians see Him.
At youth group, the teens in attendance were engaged in a very lively discussion, during which, my daughter said something slightly off the mark theologically. I immediately corrected and expanded on her words—matter-of-factly, I thought. I was one of the youth leaders, after all. It was my duty to make sure the kids understood everything correctly. The discussion continued, but without my daughter. Her head went down, and she said nothing else.
When we got home, she turned to me, “You made fun of me!”
I spend a fair amount of time in airports and on airplanes. On almost every trip, someone inevitably asks me what I do for a living. I generally want to answer, “It’s complicated.” There should be a special club for those of us in indescribable vocations. In the last year I have settled on, “I’m a trauma therapist. I specialize in the intersection of faith and mental health.”
You’ll find the words justification and sanctification used hand-in-hand in sermons and Christian books, describing what Jesus has done for us. We use these words often, but do we really understand them? The two terms have a nice ring next to each other, but it’s important to differentiate the terms. Keep reading for an overview of what justification and sanctification mean and how both words describe our lives as Christians.
There’s never a perfect time to turn over a new leaf in life, but as a Christian, it is always necessary to offer forgiveness. We are meant to show God’s love and Christ’s light to all. Yet forgiveness can be difficult, sometimes seemingly impossible in our sinful and broken world. Are you struggling to find the words to forgive others, whether that’s a fussy child, someone you’ve been on bad terms with, or even yourself? Read below for prayers for forgiveness that can help you bring everything to Him in this new phase of your life.
Devotionals are a pivotal part of any daily faith enrichment. Just as you try to have conversations with your friends daily, it’s important to keep a conversation going with God the Father so He can guide you in life. He pours His love and grace out to you when you sit with Him through reflection and prayer. Additionally, devotions give you a moment of rest and reset from the busyness of daily life. Come back to God daily with the help of these top ten devotionals that are certain to fit your lifestyle.
As a follow-up to our post on the seasons, feasts, and festivals in the Church Year, we’ve compiled a list of Church Year commemorations to help deepen your understanding. Read below for more information on the Church Year. Then follow the links to learn about each commemoration.
For many people, Christmas is an exciting time of reuniting with family, spending quality time together, and eating too many cookies.
But for others, it’s a painful reminder of broken families, loss of loved ones, or long distances that separate you.
The longest chapter in the Bible is Psalm 119. The Psalm is divided into twenty-two sections, one for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet. Each section speaks about God’s Word in a vast variety of ways. We hear God’s Word referred to as His precepts, testimonies, Law, statutes, commandments, rules, ways, and of course, Word.
Psalm 119 is a masterpiece of meditation and prayer. It brings the reader or hearer of the psalm back again and again to a love of God’s Word, a delight in learning and understanding more about God.
During Advent and Christmas, we hear about peace. We read Isaiah’s names for the Messiah, including “Prince of Peace.” In Jesus’ birth story, recorded in Luke, the heavenly hosts say, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom He is pleased!” (Luke 2:14). We sing, “Sleep in heavenly peace” in the hymn “Silent Night, Holy Night” (LSB 363:1).