What Is Christmas All About?

A compilation

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Gifts of lasting meaning…

Like most everyone, you’ve got a full calendar for December … shopping, presents, parties, plans, preparations, cooking, cleaning, hosting, visiting. But stop for a minute and reflect: Why am I doing all this? Who am I trying to please? Or just impress?

This holiday is meant to be a celebration of the purest, simplest, and most complete love ever known—the love of a heavenly Father who sent His Son to live among us, to teach us how to  . . .  read more

Life Is Meant to Be a Challenge

By Maria Fontaine

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“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
—Jeremiah 29:11 ESV

Adversity often has a way of catapulting us into situations and encounters with people that we would never have otherwise had the opportunity to meet. Sometimes the Lord opens doors through seemingly negative situations that would not have opened otherwise. If we stay attuned to the Lord and follow His plan, usually we eventually . . .  read more

What the Good News Looks Like

A compilation

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I remember the first time it dawned on me to love people in such a way that they know how God feels about them. One summer when I was working with students, I was invited to speak at a high school retreat on the Columbia River in central Washington State. … As [my friend, Jeff, and I] were sitting there praying about the session to come, I had a strong impression that  . . .  read more

Failure—A Victory from Defeat

By Maria Fontaine

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The Lord never fails, even if we fail. No matter how many times you’ve failed Him, He won’t fail you. He’ll bring you through. The best thing you can do when facing failure is to keep your mind on the Lord. Trust Him. I know God’s going to help you because you’re praying and we’re praying, and He answers our prayers. Best of all, “the Spirit itself intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.” (Romans 8:27 NIV)

So why worry? We all fail sometime . . .  read more

Trials Equal Good

A compilation

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Because “many are the afflictions of the righteous,” (Psalm 34:19) it’s certainly comforting to know that “all these things work together for good to them that love the Lord, to them who are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28) In fact, in order to come through our many trials, difficulties, battles, and temptations victoriously, it is imperative that we make this promise in Romans 8:28 a vital part of our life.

If we don’t send the events of our daily . . .  read more

Strength in Gentleness

A compilation

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But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
—Galatians 5:22–23

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But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.
—James 3:17

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He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your  . . .  read more

The Life of a Disciple

A compilation

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A disciple walks with Jesus, follows Jesus, and lives with Jesus! This is the difference between casual Christianity and discipleship.
—David Brandt Berg

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These things that I once considered valuable, I now consider worthless for Christ. It’s far more than that! I consider everything else worthless because I’m much better off knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. It’s because of him that I think of everything as worthless. I threw it all away in order to gain Christ and to have . . .  read more