THIN PLACES

Sometime during our lives we all will likely experience a moment so transcendently beautiful that time seems to freeze and the world stands still. The trigger for such a moment can take a thousand forms: a piece of music or a work of art; great literature read aloud; the contemplation of pure math. More often it is the scent of honeysuckle, a perfect sunset, or the face of a child. Marital … [Read more...]

THIN PLACES

Sometime during our lives we all will likely experience a moment so transcendently beautiful that time seems to freeze and the world stands still. The trigger for such a moment can take a thousand forms: a piece of music or a work of art; great literature read aloud; the contemplation of pure math. More often it is the scent of honeysuckle, a perfect sunset, or the face of a child. Marital … [Read more...]

GracEmail special

THE ASSIGNMENT The first rays of morning gradually illumined the volcanic mountains before me, and the cobblestone streets of Antigua glowed softly beneath my feet. It was August 2007, and I was in this picturesque Guatemalan village on professional retreat with my employer, the Lanier Law Firm of Houston, Texas. During this early morning walk, I was asking God for a new assignment -- something … [Read more...]

SEVEN BLESSINGS

Through the years, I have known many professional ministers who experienced sudden, involuntary occupational changes. On one occasion, instead of preaching and doing pastoral work, my friend found himself heralding the merits of a particular luxury motor-car company. Remembering a similar transition long ago in my own life and wishing to encourage my friend, I wrote him the following light-hearted … [Read more...]

NURSERY THEOLOGY

For those privileged to be born in Christian homes, good theology begins in the nursery, where it is communicated--one suspects--most often in song. What better introduction to truth as a whole and in all its aspects than this: Jesus loves me. This I know, For the Bible tells me so. Little ones to Him belong; They are weak but He is strong. There we have it--“Truth” for all, Jews and … [Read more...]

INTUITION (CAN BE GOOD)

A gracEmail subscriber in Texas writes, "One afternoon I heard a television talk-show host say, 'I believe that intuition is the voice of God.' My mother has reminded me though, 'The devil speaks to you, too.' What do the scriptures say about intuition?" * * * There is an intuition which comes from God. The Creator has planted an inherent sense of fundamental morality in all his human creatures … [Read more...]

INTUITION (CAN BE BAD)

A gracEmail subscriber in Texas writes, "One afternoon I heard a television talk-show host say, 'I believe that intuition is the voice of God.' My mother has reminded me though, 'The devil speaks to you, too.' What do the scriptures say about intuition?" * * * The English word "intuition" comes from a Latin verb meaning "to look at" or "to contemplate," and it names the faculty or gift of … [Read more...]

GOD’S WILL FOR INDIVIDUAL LIVES

Some teachers at a Christian college expressed surprise that many students expected to find God's will for their individual lives -- in selecting a mate, choosing a career, deciding where to live. "Where does this type of thinking come from?" one asked. * * * Perhaps it comes from the Bible, I respectfully submit. As believers, we can say with David, "He guides me in the paths of righteousness … [Read more...]

HEARING GOD’S VOICE

A gracEmail subscriber writes: "What would one have to do to be able to hear God speak as the prophets did? I hear God through the Scriptures and through the Holy Spirit in my conscience, but what is keeping me from hearing God as Jeremiah did -- distinctly and in direct quotation?" * * * On our part, we can be sure to keep our spiritual ears clean from habitual or unconfessed sin, and our … [Read more...]

FORTUNE-TELLING

After visiting a psychic to learn the future, the friend of a gracEmail subscriber wonders whether to adjust her life to fit the psychic's reading. The gracEmail subscriber asks what the Bible says about fortune-tellers, whether a Christian should consult with them and, if so, what use to make of their pronouncements. * * * Fortune-tellers have existed in most cultures throughout recorded … [Read more...]