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The Interrupted Life

We interrupt this article before it even begins to communicate this vitally important message Interruptions happen.Last weekend we were hit with a snowstorm that blanketed the earth with about seven inches of the white stuff. The snowstorm interrupted our plans. Cameron and Casey Fisher were scheduled to be baptized. But the snow made travel inadvisable for Cameron and Cas...

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Why Be Baptized

Why be Baptized? In our culture, we engage in some significant ceremonies to declare that a significant change is taking place in our lives. Graduation is one of those ceremonies. It signifies that a young person is stepping out of adolescence into adulthood. A wedding ceremony is another public declaration that something in your life is changing. Baptism is also such a c...

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Epiphany Sunday

Epiphany is the holiday that Wise Men remember, but the church forgot. Epiphany falls on January 6, 12 days after Christmasthe day you're supposed to get 12 drummers drummingand the day we commonly remember the arrival of the Wise Men in Bethlehem. For those few who might have heard of Epiphany, chances are that you will know it as the day the Wise Men came. And that is ri...

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Hard to Accept

Some time ago a man whose name I do not knowwent to China to be a missionary. He was what youmight call an agricultural missionary. As a gardener,he taught people how to raise different kinds ofvegetables, how to feed their children better, howto raise a cow and have milk. He also told storiesabout Jesus, and he translated some of them intoChinese. He was perfectly at home...

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The Word Became Flesh

About this time last year, a young man wandered into the church building, looking for a place to get warm. A tire on his car had gone flat, and he didn't have a spare. We managed to get his car to a local tire store which happened to have a tire to fit the man's car. The price was right, so I authorized the technician to install the tire. While standing there in the lobby ...

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God Comes to Us in Unlikely Places

On the first Sunday in Advent, we remember that Christ comes to us in darkness. Jesus was born at night, in a messy stall. This indicates that his presence, our healing, and our salvation, are always taking place in the dark and messy parts of life. During this season of encroaching darkness, we celebrate the coming of the Light of the World, which dispels the darkness. An...

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Why Do We Celebrate Advent?

This Sunday morning, we begin our celebration of the season of Advent. The word "Advent" is derived from the Latin word adventus, which means, "coming" or "arrival." Scholars believe that during the 4thand 5thcenturies in Spain and Gaul (France), Advent was a season of preparation for thebaptismof new Christians at the January feast of Epiphany. During this season of prepa...

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Thankful for the Minor Prophets

Imagine that you're a visiting a new Bible study group. You're introduced to the group, there's some small-talk, then what seems like hours of prayer requests for people you don't know anything about followed by a brief opening prayer. And then the group leader says, "Open your Bibles to the book of Obadiah." Before you were nervous; now you're terrified. Where is the boo...

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The Result of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving and courage go hand in hand. In fact, the giving of thanks leads to courage. We see this in Acts 28:15, where we see that Paul "thanked God, and took courage." Paul needed courage. On his journey to Rome to testify of Jesus before Caesar, the ship that was supposed to take Paul there was shipwrecked off the coast of Malta. All 276 passengers survived, but i...

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Waiting on God Doesn’t Mean Doing Nothing

Years ago, when we lived in Nashville, our church sponsored a family of refugees from Vietnam. They knew some English, but were a long way from being fluent in our language. We found an apartment for them as well as jobs for the mother and her son, Phuong who was about twenty years old at the time. Our congregation worked with this family of refugees in a number of ways to...

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