Paul & Darth Vader

I once heard a comparison between the conversion of the Apostle Paul… and the conversion of Darth Vader.

While this analogy obviously has to be taken tongue-in-cheek, I could imagine how this CliffsNotes conversation about Paul’s story might be very effective with someone who isn’t that familiar with the Bible.

Read

Daily Devotionals

Luke 19:28-42

And when he had said this, he went on ahead, going up to Jerusalem. When he drew near to Beth′phage and Bethany, at the mount that is called Olivet, he sent two of the disciples, saying, “Go into the village opposite, where on entering you will find a colt tied, on which no one has ever yet sat; untie it and bring it here. If any one asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ you shall say this, ‘The Lord has need of it.’” So those who were sent went away and found it as he had told them. And as they were untying the colt, its owners said to them, “Why are you untying the colt?” And they said, “The Lord has need of it.” And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their garments on the colt they set Jesus upon it. And as he rode along, they spread their garments on the road. As he was now drawing near, at the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” And some of the Pharisees in the multitude said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.” And when he drew near and saw the city he wept over it, saying, “Would that even today you knew the things that make for peace! But now they are hid from your eyes.
Luke 19:28-42

Read

Cast the first stone

I have a smooth black stone in my office that may look like an ordinary rock, but in fact, there is nothing ordinary about it at all. I have had it for many years as a reminder of God’s great love for us through the gift of His son Jesus Christ. More than 10 years ago now, I was given that stone at our Ash Wednesday service with this scripture attached: “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.” (John 8:7)

Read

Angels looking over us

I have always loved the thought of angels. In Scripture, angels are messengers that praise God and remind us of God’s love. The author of the venerable comic strip “Family Circus,” Bil Keane, loves to use angels in his comics. He often shows one of the children in the comic strip being escorted through a dangerous intersection, or being watched over at play by a protective angel. A nice touch is that the angel is often Bil’s father, who left this life some years ago. Bil’s father was a messenger of God’s love in his life and it is easy to see why Bil imagines angels to resemble his father.

Read

Forgiveness over Revenge

“That’s not possible” and “That will never work” are two strains we often chant upon hearing something unbelievable about someone or some event, and when we are sure an idea or concept will never fly.

Read

Forgiveness

One of the impossible possibilities Christ introduces to us is the ability for strength to manifest itself in gentleness. This is something many of His contemporaries thought impossible. It is widely believed that Judas himself was expecting the power of the Messiah to be expressed in a conquering army, overthrowing the Roman Empire with human force. Jesus has not come to destroy. He has come to confront and forgive: a true expression of strength.

Read

New Adventures

A new childcare center in 90 days… is that possible? St. Luke’s Senior Pastor Dr. Bob Long had just come back from lunch one Friday in May 2007, with the pastor of First United Methodist Church. He said they had a lot of classrooms that had been redone after the 1995 bombing. They were not being used during the week, and they thought a childcare center would be a great asset to the church and the community.

Read

High School Baseball

Baseball had always been a major part of my life. When I was a young boy, my father would come home after a long day at work and play catch in the front yard with me. I loved playing in games and looking up and seeing my mother and father in the stands cheering me on. As I entered 10th grade, I moved from the intermediate school to the high school and that meant I had to try out for the high school baseball team at the large Houston high school where I attended. After a week of practices and tryouts, the coach called me into his office. He told me that I would make the high school team, but I would remain on the bench and not see any playing time. He told me that he was letting me know in case I didn’t want to be on a team where I would be sitting on the bench. I was so disappointed – I had played baseball since I was eight years old. I couldn’t imagine not being able to play. I then told him that I hoped to prove him wrong.

Read

Daily Devotionals

Luke 19:1-10

He entered Jericho and was passing through. And there was a man named Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector, and rich. And he sought to see who Jesus was, but could not, on account of the crowd, because he was small of stature. So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree to see him, for he was to pass that way. And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down; for I must stay at your house today.” So he made haste and came down, and received him joyfully. And when they saw it they all murmured, “He has gone in to be the guest of a man who is a sinner.” And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have defrauded any one of anything, I restore it fourfold.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, since he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of man came to seek and to save the lost.”

Luke 19:1-10

Read

Let the children come to me!

I have never seen the love of God more at work in someone than I do when I watch the mentors with the students of Rancho Village Elementary. The patience and love these mentors show to the children touches my heart so much.

Read