The Secret to Pleasing God

sowing-Seeds

So what is it? What is the secret to pleasing God? When we consider Jesus’ parable of the talents, most of us Christ-followers understand that each of us has been commissioned as a steward. Each of us would likely agree that we want to please God in our role as a steward of the time, talents, and treasure He has given us. When we read about what happened to the unprofitable servant with one talent, we’re sure we don’t want to be that guy. So how can we ensure then that we don’t end … [Read more...]

Why No One Is Really Rich

its-mine

We hear a lot about the widening gap between the rich and the poor these days. What we often don't think about is that in God’s eyes, no one is really rich. We’re all equally poor. We just convince ourselves that His stuff belongs to us. Consider the convicting message Christ delivered to the infamous church at Laodicea: I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of … [Read more...]

To All Those Who Don’t Feel Like Giving Anymore

hitting the wall

Do you ever have trouble finding motivation for giving of time, talent, and treasure?  Do you ever run out of energy to love?  Have you ever given of yourself and thought, “That’s enough.  I can’t give any more.” Or is that just a problem with me? I’m sure this happens to everyone who seeks to live generously.  Why do we so often hit that wall where we just don’t feel like giving anymore? Perhaps it’s because we just don’t realize everything God has given to us.  Maybe … [Read more...]

When God Plays Hide-and-Seek with You

man-praying

I don’t think it coincidence that C. S. Lewis started with a simple game of hide-and-seek when he penned The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe.  The land of Narnia was only revealed in all its glory through Lucy’s participation in the process of intentional concealment and discovery. Although Lewis may not have intended it, his story depicts the process of hide-and-seek that God often uses to reveal both His glory and ours: It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of … [Read more...]

Why You Have Been Blessed by God

count-your-blessings-with-the-blessings-jar

Make no mistake about it: You have been blessed for a reason. When God pours out his goodness upon us, He has other objectives than your mere happiness. He blesses us so that we may bless others. We could call it the circle of love. God gives to us so we will give to others who will then give praise and glory back to God. In the end, it’s about Him. This cycle of God-induced generosity is clear in God’s covenant words to Abraham in Genesis 12: Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go from … [Read more...]

Why No One Is Ever Truly Giving

giving-to-others

We’re never truly giving. The truth is that whenever we give, we’re always getting something in return.  Generosity is not a zero-sum game, no matter how it may look to us at times. All too often, we think that if we give to someone else we’ll be left with less than what we had before. When we’re giving money, it’s easy to make that case based on what we see remaining in our wallets or bank accounts. When we give of our time, we can measure the opportunity costs for everything … [Read more...]

Advice for the New Christian: Grow Where God Planted You

Mangrove_young_plant

Why has God planted you where you are? New Christians often presume that a faithful response to Christ’s invitation means they need to enter into some form of “full-time ministry.” In their rush to follow their Lord, they often fail to consider their natural strengths, talents, abilities, connections, or resources.  In other words, what plans might the Master Gardener have to use them as they grow – right where they are? Jesus describes God as a Sower, generously spreading the … [Read more...]

What if God Asked You to Give Away Your Favorite Toy?

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When you were a child, did you have a favorite toy? Was there one that meant more to you than others? Maybe it meant more because a special relative had given it to you. Perhaps the toy meant more because of the memories associated with it. Or maybe it meant more because you had purchased it with your own money. For whatever reason, it became your favorite, one that would be difficult to give away even if God asked. For me, it was baseball cards. The Gift I Gave I know, technically, … [Read more...]


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