Story Team Weekly: An Identity in Christ Alone

“I looked for my identity in so many different places.”Joseph remembers being called gay for the first time when he was 13—at a church camp. “It was a devastating experience,” he remembers. Then, as before, he channeled his pain into playing the violin, a God-given talent he’d long nurtured, but “I never found my identity in Christ,” he says now. “I looked for my identity in so many different places.”Though raised in a Christian home, Joseph always had a strained relationship with believe … [Read more...]

Story Team Weekly: Fiercely Loved

“I was basically like a sex slave and a mistress for him.”After being exposed to pornography at a young age, Lorraine found herself wanting to live a life of worldly pleasure. For years she tried to find her fulfillment in sex and in men. Desperate for real love, Lorraine quit college in order to have an affair with a man in Sweden for several months. When that relationship painfully ended, Lorraine was left at her breaking point, searching for a way out.This is her story: “I remember di … [Read more...]

Reflections of Grace 140: Is Faith Our Reality?

[display_podcast]Many years ago I worked as a Medical Staff Coordinator in the Administrative Department of our local hospital.  I had worked my way up from the Cardiovascular Department to the one job that no one else could do, or so I thought.  I felt pretty secure in my job, and as a single mom knew that it could only get better from there……Until the day I was fired.I was called into the CEO’s office and let go due to layoffs in the hospital in general.  The Administrative secretar … [Read more...]

Reflections of Grace 134: Toxic “Christians”

[display_podcast]Have you ever been deeply disillusioned by someone whom you thought was a friend but turned out to be a controller or manipulator and when you didn’t comply with their demands they dropped you?  Do you think because we are to seek to love everyone with God’s unconditional love that means you should allow them total access into your life?Actually real genuine love has many boundaries.  To enable someone to treat you with anything less than respect is actually enabling them … [Read more...]

Reflections of Grace 133: Those Spiritual Black Holes

[display_podcast]Have you ever had a time when you felt like you were in a spiritual black hole?   I have. The pressure seemed unbearable. No sense of God‘s presence. No sense of anything going on around me.These are the times, sorry to say, when I tend to question God’s love for us.  But then He demonstrates to me that He was there all the time. I call these times “faith experiences.”I have come to believe the black holes are needful in order to know that we have the shield that can … [Read more...]

Reflections of Grace 132: Can I Consider It Pure Joy?

[display_podcast]Feeling sorry for myself one day, I started asking myself some hard questions.   Have I been caught up in looking at the depth of pain and the depth of trials and sometimes pure craziness in my life, and thought, “Why the heck me, Lord”?  Have I not sown into your Kingdom?   When is my time coming?Yes, I am really being transparent here.“Haven’t I served you all my life?  Why so much suffering?  Starting from my childhood of abuse and ending up here, years later… sti … [Read more...]