• The Power and Danger of If

    The word “if” can be both powerful and dangerous. I’ve recently been enjoying a Japanese animated movie that explores this idea. The movie, entitled “Fireworks,” is about a boy named Norimichi who accidentally discovers a way to rewind time for the express purpose of taking a different path in a specific situation. In particular, Norimichi likes a girl named Nazuna, but various obstacles keep preventing their time together. After he realizes he can turn back time and get a do-over, he uses this ability to extend his time with Nazuna. His choices, however, are not without consequences. This movie has caused me to reflect a lot on the word, “if.”…

  • Submitting To Christ: A Ditch On Both Sides Of The Road

    One thing all Christians should agree on is that Jesus is King. He came to announce and inaugurate the Kingdom of God (Mk. 1:14-15), and through his death and resurrection, he has ascended to the throne as King of kings and Lord or lords (1 Tim. 6:15, Rev. 19:16). Part of having Jesus as King means he has absolute authority (Eph. 1:17-23). All things are under his control, and he has the authority to exercise his will as he pleases. At some point, Jesus’ authority will collide with our will, and what we do at that point shows whether we truly honor him as King. There will be times when…

  • Written On The Heart

    We all know Proverbs as a book of wisdom which shares important guidance for Godly living. Many of the proverbs contained with the book are simple and concise: “a slack hand causes poverty, but the hand of the diligent makes rich” (10:4); “Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets, but he who is trustworthy in spirit keeps things covered” (11:13); “The simple believes everything, but the prudent gives thought to his steps” (14:15). These are typically the ones that stand out in my mind as I try to apply the wisdom of Proverbs to my life. However, even within a book like Proverbs, there are statements that point us to some…

  • Attacking Kingdom Work: Handling Criticism

    In my previous post, I looked at how Nehemiah’s critics approached their opposition of him. Two men especially – Sanballat and Tobiah – did not want to see the wall built or the Jewish people helped in any way, so they make desperate attempts to oppose Nehemiah and his work. We, too, can expect this kind of criticism and opposition, especially when we are doing Kingdom work that honors the name of our Lord. While we saw the kinds of criticism we can expect based upon Nehemiah’s experience, an important question remains: how should I handle criticism when it comes? Before we answer this question, I want to back up…

  • Attacking Kingdom Work: 3 Steps Of Opposition

    Criticism and opposition are to Kingdom work what death and taxes are to life: a certainty. If you’re producing fruit for God’s kingdom, you can be sure that the enemy will not be happy, and he will use others to attack you. These attacks can be a destabilizing force, throwing off your focus and keeping you from being as fruitful as you wish to be. This is especially the case when you do not anticipate it and prepare for it. Thankfully, scripture gives us some great examples to learn from, and for this particular challenge, Nehemiah is among the best. Nehemiah was the cupbearer of King Artaxerxes of the Persian…