Transformed Lives by Christin Wallace
This story of Jesus, like so many, is inspiring. His strength and his cool, calm, and collected attitude are clearly shown. That is not me. I am an anxious person who is eager to please, but that is not who Jesus was. He was righteous above all else and yet he did not act that way. He asked questions to try and understand. He was patient and kind and willing to do hard things for the good of the kingdom.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 37”
The Challenge by Hannah Elhard
“You look for an opportunity to kill me, because there is no place for you in my word.”
As the audience in this passage does, it is easy for us to disregard this passage. Make ourselves separate, “I would never KILL Jesus. This passage doesn’t apply to me.” But are there other ways to understand the word “kill” here rather than the literal death?
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 36”
Living Light by Eileen Cooper
Reading this text made me instantly link back to the scripture and sermon from February 9, 2020 at Stone Village.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 35”
Law vs. Justice by Chad Johns
The law is clear. Adulterers get stoned. What else could Jesus possibly say? It’s the “clear meaning of scripture” after all. He couldn’t possibly go against that or could he?
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 34”
The Art of Waiting by Hannah Elhard
An excerpt from Oh The Places You’ll Go
Everyone is just waiting
For a train to go or a bus to come
Or a plane to go or the mail to come Or the rain to go or the phone to ring Or the snow to snow or waiting around For a Yes or a No
Or waiting for their hair to grow Everyone is just waiting.
Waiting for the fish to bite
Or waiting for wind to fly a kite
Or waiting around for a Friday Night
Or waiting perhaps for their Uncle Jake Or a pot to boil or a Better Break
Or a string of pearls or a pair of pants Or a wig with curls or Another Chance.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 33”
Is He or Isn’t He? by Beata Gray
Is Jesus the Messiah, or isn’t he? It is time to make a choice. Do we let minor things like where He comes from cast doubt on our belief in our Lord? Or do we come to Him, come thirsting for a drink of His living water?
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 32”
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always, though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone. Amen.
The Lord is Our Keeper by Charlie Kneer
Whether it is easy to admit or not, we all need help. However, so often we solve our own needs with the resources we have…time, money, the internet. It is so easy to lose sight of the fact that all we have is a gift of God’s grace. It is so easy to forget that while we sleep and while our loved ones sleep, it is God that keeps our lives.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 30”
A Life Raft by Hannah Elhard
My mother’s family are all Roman Catholics. My Nana is especially devout, attending daily mass like clockwork. She kneels to pray beside her bed every morning and every night before bed. She has done this for as long as anyone in the family can remember, going on 60 years. Part of her daily morning prayers is the Magnificat, the canticle drawn directly from this text in Luke.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 29”
Where In Your Life Do You Need Healing? by Pastor John
When I lead one of Stone Village’s life groups, I always ask the question, “Where in your life do you need healing?” It feels like a simple, straightforward question to me; a question most people would be capable of answering with ease. Some participants do answer the question quickly. Others though are clearly unsettled by the question, possibly embarrassed to name those facets of life in need of healing or perhaps, simply unwilling to reflect upon the brokenness of their life.
“Where in your life do you need healing?”
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 28”
Seeing and Believing by Steph Wells
This passage reminds me of how often we want to see proof of something before we actually believe it. If one of my daughters asks me to believe them, my ability to do this is often dependent on the situation at hand and how they respond to a number of questions.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 27”
When Was the Last Time You Rested? by Chad Johns
Lie down. Still. Restore. Comfort. Prepare a table. Anoint. Mercy. Dwell. These are the words of scripture.
Busy. Exhausted. Stressed. Worried. Anxious. Depressed. Afraid. Burnt out. Uncertain. These are the words of our culture.
You probably have the ladder. Are you willing to have the former?
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 26”
Humility’s Hard… by Andrew Gifford
I don’t know about you, but when I read or hear any of Jesus’ parables my instinct is to relate to the “good guy” of the story: the Widow, the Good Samaritan, the Faithful Servant… it’s so much more comfortable (and FAR less challenging) to insert ourselves into these positions.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 25”
Moved to A Place of Silence by Heather Monkmeyer
In the chapter leading up to this passage, Jesus is in the temple and different groups of religious scholars are taking turns trying to entrap him in arguments that range from paying taxes to resurrection. Here, a scribe who seems to respect Jesus, asks him a legitimate question, not about a peripheral issue, but about core things. What is the most important commandment of all the commandments? And Jesus tells him: Love God with everything in you and love the people in front of you.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 24”
A Lost Child by Beata Gray
I remember a day when I was shopping at Walmart with my two youngest children. Tennison was 5 years old and Montgomery was 3 years old. They insisted that they wanted to walk beside the cart and promised to stay beside me. While I was deciding on frozen vegetables, Montgomery decided to go to the end of the aisle and hide around the corner. It was less than a minute, not even 30 seconds that my eyes were not on him, and just like that, he was gone.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 23”
Desired Outcome by Mark Matson
In all organizations there are rules that all on the team are expected to live by. Leaders are expected to communicate them, most importantly, by personal example. The rules of engagement tell us what the expected behavior is on whatever team we are on. The rules are there to align the members of the team optimize their collective ability to achieve a desired outcome.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 22”
Finding Forgiveness by Scott Anderson
My first job as a lawyer was prosecuting sex crimes against children. The cases were spiritually draining and emotionally wrenching. During interviews with young, female victims, I was forced to look past the desk photo of my own little daughter. Victimhood became less a legal status than a lived reality. And with victimhood implanted in my mind, I found evil sprouting everywhere. Everyone became a possible perpetrator or a potential victim. Everyone was about to do wrong or to be wronged.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 21”
Do I Listen? by Mark Matson
When I first read this I thought about the external world and could quickly see how individuals who speak God’s truth to our world are often ignored or rebuked – even by fellow believers! But then I went inside and thought Jesus talks to me each day through the Word of God. That is the prophet in MY world. How well do I listen?
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 20”
To Be Known and Loved by Pastor John
She has a history. Things done and left undone, some good some not so good. Guilts and regrets. Fears. Wounds and sorrows. I suspect she has secrets too.
Study the history of this text, read the commentaries, listen to the interpretations and you will learn that her past is generally seen as one of promiscuity. The evidence? Five spouses, and now living unmarried with a sixth man. She’s looked at yet not seen. She’s labeled yet nameless. She remains unknown to everyone. Everyone, that is, except Jesus.
Continue reading “Lenten Devotional Series 2020: Day 19”