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The Bible first shocked me in high school. Our pastor read from Psalm 137, and the last verse blew my mind—and not in a good way.It read, “Happy is the one who seizes [Babylonian] infants and dashes them against the rocks.” I recoiled. Our pastor explained that the Psalm was meant to horrify us. It demonstrated that there was no human emotion that God had not encountered before. But I wasn’t so sure because I loved the straight and narrow. I kept my emotions in tidy rows, ready for inspection....

by School Of Life on 16 September 2018

We are all tempted and prone to sin because none of us are perfect. King Solomon, one of the wisest men who ever lived, says it like this: “Not a single person on earth is always good and never sins (Ecclesiastes 7:20 [NLT]).” It’s part of human nature to ponder ideas such as: “I could easily change this number so that my hours are higher; no one would know.” Or maybe you’re more tempted with ideas like this: “She really gets on my nerves. If I tell my friends something horrible...

by School Of Life on 16 September 2018

Turning the key to the glass door, we opened it to survey the now vacant church building that lay before us. The insurance office we had transformed into a church was eerily quiet after months of laughter and sermons preached. Today was the last time we would ever open those doors. After five and a half years of church planting, our time had come to an end. In the process, we lost everything. We had to sell our home due to the church not making it financially and move to a different state so...

by School Of Life on 15 September 2018

When we belong to Christ, the enemy never has the final word over our lives. We are secure in God’s hands. Here’s 7 things He offers us to stand firm against attack: 1. The gift of the Holy Spirit God fills us with strength, wisdom, and discernment through His own Spirit to stay strong in the battle. He never leaves us to fend for ourselves and fight in our own strength. We need His fresh filling every day, we need the empowerment that only He can offer. Every believer has the gift of God’s...

by School Of Life on 15 September 2018

We’re in a battle in this world. We may not see it, we might forget it’s there. But the enemy would love nothing more than to fill our minds with discouragement and defeat. If you’re a believer who is living like salt and light in a dark world, you won’t go for long without encountering obstacles and attacks he will hurl your direction. And though we can’t stop his cruel attacks, we don’t have to let him win. God reminds us in His word to stay aware of Satan’s schemes, to live alert...

by School Of Life on 15 September 2018

Often when we find ourselves struggling with fear or constant worry, it’s hard to even know what to pray. Words seem far away and our thoughts can too easily get lost on what’s pressing in, overwhelming us. But here’s what we can hold onto even in those difficult times: God understands. He hears us, and He is close, always. He reminds us to draw near to Him and find mercy and grace in times of need. He assures us of His constant Presence, surrounding us, leading us, giving us peace that...

by School Of Life on 15 September 2018

The book of Psalms contains some of the most quoted verses in the entire Bible. Psalms flows with words of praise, prayers, and heartfelt thoughts about life and God. Emotions range widely from crying out to God while facing the depths of despair, to praying for His Sovereign help and protection, to celebrating His goodness with joy and thankfulness. And maybe that’s one reason many of us love it so much, because that is real life. I can relate. Maybe you can too. Some days are just hard. We...

by School Of Life on 15 September 2018

One of the greatest lies the enemy throws our way is that there’s a limit on how many times we can ask for forgiveness. If the enemy can get us to believe that, then we will be caught in a cycle of fear and hopelessness. But God stands, arms open wide, extending the greatest gift of all: relationship and community with Him. But if the enemy can twist scriptures and get you to believe that God is capricious, unreliable, and conditional in His forgiveness, then you will be an impotent and ineffective...

by School Of Life on 15 September 2018

I spend much of my life waiting for something: for the light to change, for a response to my text or email, for the nurse to call my name. I wait for hard things, like answers to blood tests and for good things, like a vacation to start. I wait for dreams to come true and for answered prayers. In many ways, the Christian life is one of waiting. We live in the in-between, a time between Christ’s ascension and his promised return. We wait for Christ to come and make all things new. We wait...

by School Of Life on 14 September 2018

As Christian counselors, pastors and people helpers we often have a hard time discerning between an evil heart and an ordinary sinner who messes up, who isn’t perfect, and full of weakness and sin. I think one of the reasons we don’t “see” evil is because we find it so difficult to believe that evil individuals actually exist. We can’t imagine someone deceiving us with no conscience, hurting others with no remorse, spinning outrageous fabrications to ruin someone’s reputation, or pretending...

by School Of Life on 14 September 2018