Sunday, June 26, 2011

More Toward The Light

Last night I talked with a woman in trouble. Her troubles are complex, but there is one simple thing she could do. She simply doesn’t want to do it.

This morning I flew out of Boston’s Logan International Airport. As often, the airport was shrouded in fog which rolls in from the sea. The plane rose quickly from the dim, wet runway, passed through thick clouds to thin, and suddenly was in sunshine, with brilliant blue sky above, and all the clouds and fog far below. The plane had moved toward the lights.
Christ is the Light of the World. His truth shines like the sun. But we must adore Him. We must learn to move to the direction of the light, no matter how dim and obscure the situation in which we find ourselves. If I adore Him who is all light, in whom “there is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5), then darkness (even the least shading of the truth) will be intolerable.

Lord, how often I prefer the fog! I am preoccupied with my troubles when I could be occupied with adoration –moving up into His Sunshine.

The Music of His Promises by Elisabeth Elliot

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Looking At Graves

Matthew tells us in the last chapter of his Gospel that the two Marys came early in the morning, “to look at the grave.” We can picture the sorrowful scene –two women in the gray dawn standing helplessly, contemplating the tomb. There was nothing left to hope for, nothing to see but a rock. We can see their drawn faces, bowed heads, the sag of their shoulders. Can we possibly picture those faces when there came a sudden earthquake, the descent of an angel, and the stone was rolled away from the grave? The angel was so dazzling, the guards (tough men, surly, and not the least sorrowing like the women) collapsed in terror. The angel addressed the women: “You ..have nothing to fear… He has been raised…” (Matt. 28:5,7). A few minutes later Jesus suddenly stood in their path.

We sometimes find ourselves looking at a “grave” –the end of all our hopes. We are helpless, defeated. Our faces are long, our shoulders droop. What difference it would make then if, by faith, we would lift up our eyes to see the bright angel and the risen Savior. We really have nothing to fear – He has risen, exactly as He said. What a defeat His crucifixion seemed. What a triumph His resurrection was – and is, forever.

Don’t look at the grave. Look up. Jesus stands risen beside you, alive forever! Then think of His comforting word: “And be assured, I am with you always, to the end of time” (Matt. 28:20).

Sunday, June 12, 2011


The word lifestyle has become a tricky and dangerous one for Christians, implying that an unlimited range of choices is open to us, from which we may select anything that happens to suit our fancy. We must remember first that the Incarnate Word entered into human life, ”dwelt among us,” and showed us glory, grace, and truth. We in turn, as those in whom Christ dwells now, are to live out His life wherever we are, whatever our gifts, temperament, or necessities. But this is what places a limitation on “lifestyle” –it is His life that we are to live. Paul’s prayer for the Colossian Christians is “that your manner of life may be worthy of the Lord and entirely pleasing to Him” (Col 1:10). This is to be our rule in the bedroom and kitchen; in the garden, shop, grocery store; in the office, the classroom, the subway, or on the ski slopes; whether we are old or young, sick or well, happy or sad, married or single, “advantaged” or “disadvantaged,” First World or Third World. The “secret hidden for long ages” is to be revealed in and through your “lifestyles,” my “lifestyle” –“the secret is this: Christ in you, the hope of a glory to come” (Col. 1:27).

What does He look like to those who watch you and me?

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Life and Peace

To most of us, I suppose, life and peace are the two most precious things, for without them the love of friends and family, the pleasures of God’s world, the possessions we have been given, cannot be enjoyed. Life, in the spiritual sense, is given in exchange for selfishness. Peace also is given when we stop doing only what we please. It never seems possible that life and peace will be ours if we let go ----the enemy sees to that, relentlessly trying to persuade us how necessary it is to hang onto our rights, to keep control. Have we ever, even once in our lives, found deep and lasting peace by that method?

God draws us always away from “Egypt,” land of bondage, of self-will, and idolatry, to what He calls “a place of rest.”

“You shall not act as we act here today,” Moses told Israel, “each of us doing what he pleases, for till now you have not reached the place of rest” (Deut. 12:8).