Now Don’t Just Sit There!

An old year has completed its course. A new year is smiling at us with twelve months of the unknown. An entire ocean of possibilities, including both sun-drenched days and a few storms with howling winds and giant waves, stretch out across the uncharted waters. If we let ourselves, we could become so afraid of the potential dangers, so safety conscious, we would miss the adventure.

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Finish Well

We have reached the end of another year and now face a new one. When we stood in this same spot 364 days ago, we looked ahead to what the Lord was going to teach us in the coming year and we anticipated the many ways we were going to see Him at work in our lives.

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Taking Responsibility

Put yourself in Joseph’s sandals. How must he have felt as he heard their words? So far as his brothers were concerned, he no longer existed! He was buried in the graveyard of their memories. He was “no more.” Out of sight, out of mind, gone forever.

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A Fire for Cold Hearts

It happened in a large, seventy-five-year-old stone house on the west side of Houston. A massive stairway led up to several bedrooms. The den down below was done in rough-hewn boards with soft leather chairs and a couple of matching sofas. The wet bar had been converted into a small library, including a shelf of tape recordings and a multiple-speaker sound system. The ideal place to spend a weekend . . . unfortunately, my wife and I were there just for the evening.

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Spiritual Leadership

None can deny that these are standard qualities found in “natural” leaders. But my question is: Are these qualities necessary in “spiritual” leaders, too? Before you answer too quickly, I would refer you to some biblical leaders who would’ve done rather poorly on a “natural” leadership test. The incredible thing is that God picked people whom we would have overlooked!

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Songless Saints

Everyone knows Ephesians 5:18, where we are told to “be filled with the Spirit” . . . but have you ever noticed that verse 18 ends with a comma, not a period? The next verse describes the very first result of being under the Spirit’s control . . . we sing! We make melody with our hearts. We communicate His presence within us by presenting our own, individual concert of sacred music to Him.

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Fear

We were rapidly descending through a night of thick fog at 200 miles per hour, but the seasoned pilot of the twin-engine Aero Commander was loving every dip, roll, and lurch. At one point he looked over at me, smiled, and exclaimed, “Hey, Chuck, isn’t this great?” I didn’t answer. As the lonely plane knifed through the overcast pre-dawn sky, I was reviewing every Bible verse I’d ever known and re-confessing every wrong I’d ever done.

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Lifelines

I’m writing these words [originally] soon after my birthday. No big deal . . . just another stabbing realization that I’m not getting any younger. I know that because the cake won’t hold all the candles. Even if it could the frosting would melt before I’d be able to blow all of them out. My kind and thoughtful secretary reminded me of another approach I could take. She gave me a birthday card showing an old guy standing beside a cake covered with candles. On the front it reads . . .

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Growing Old

Growing old, like taxes, is a fact we all must face. Now, you’re not going to get me to declare when growing up stops and growing old starts—not on your life! But there are some signs we can read along life’s journey that suggest we are entering the transition (how’s that for diplomacy?).

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Resentment

Leo Held was a paragon of respectability. He was a middle-aged, hard-working lab technician who had worked at the same Pennsylvania paper mill for nineteen years. Having been a Boy Scout leader, an affectionate father, a member of the local fire brigade, and a regular church-goer, he was admired as a model in his community. Until . . .

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