Why is Billy Graham in Heaven?

“America’s Pastor,” Billy Graham, passed away Wednesday at the age of 99. The news of his death opened a floodgate of tributes from near and far. President Donald Trump tweeted, “The GREAT Billy Graham is dead. There was nobody like him! A very special man.” The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said...

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Flesh, Fasting and French Fries

As we move through Lent, it’s a sure bet you’re going to be reminded to “deny yourself.” One of my sons told me that a Facebook friend feels she’s eating too many starchy carbs, so she’s giving up French fries. A lot of people view Lent as a kind of...

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Repentance Doesn’t Have To Be Emotional

In seminary, I was a youth pastor. Every summer during this time, I served as a volunteer at high school church camp. Those were halcyon days spent in small groups, worshipping under the stars, eating junk food with no regret and climbing  “The Mountain,” a cedar-cloaked bluff topped with a...

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Good Infection

The flu is fierce this season. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that this year’s outbreak is on pace to be the worst in nearly a decade. Influenza activity is now widespread in 48 states and Puerto Rico. If that news isn’t bad enough, the season hasn’t peaked yet....

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Can A Bracelet Keep You From Griping?

A few of my clergy colleagues have just completed the “Live Complaint Free” challenge. The brainchild of Rev. Will Bowen of Kansas City, the campaign utilizes a bracelet to remind the wearer not to complain or criticize for 21 straight days. If one breaks the pledge, he or she has to...

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When Life Gives You Jalapeños

We’ve all heard the phrase, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” – but what if life hands you a pile of jalapeños? That’s the situation I faced earlier in the month when I was preaching a revival near Austin, Texas. The host pastor took me out for lunch after...

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Glow-in-the-Dark Humans

Do you know that you glow? No, I’m not talking about the clammy glow you sport after a workout. I’m talking about actual light that comes out of our bodies. According to a 2009 study conducted by the Tohoku Institute of Technology, human bioluminescence exists – it’s just too faint for...

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I Understand All Too Well

Mark Twain reportedly said, “It ain’t those parts of the Bible that I can’t understand that bother me. It’s the parts that I do understand.” One such understandable story is found in Matthew 9:9: “As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth....

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Come, Thou Dayspring Part 4 of a Series Exploring the Advent hymn, "O Come O Come Emmanuel"

Oh, come, Thou Dayspring from on high, And cheer us by Thy drawing nigh; Disperse the gloomy clouds of night And death’s dark shadows put to flight. Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel Shall come to thee, O Israel. Have you ever witnessed the darkness turn into dawn? It’s beautiful, isn’t it? The...

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