Acts 2:38 [mobile-1262x1262].png

38 And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. ~Acts 2:38 (ESV)

The preaching of Peter is the fulfillment of the expectation of Jesus. He was told to baptize in the Jesus’ name and his exhortation closes down with that same refrain!


#bible #Christian #faith #timelesstruth #Jesus #transformation

Hope amid Tragedy

In the face of tragedy, succumbing to despair and losing sight of hope can be all too easy. Yet, throughout history, humanity has found solace and strength in the most challenging times. We must turn to words of life, seeking encouragement and inspiration to help us navigate the darkest seasons of life. 

Acknowledging the Reality of Suffering:

Tragedy strikes indiscriminately, affecting both the righteous and the wicked. The Bible acknowledges the reality of suffering and provides a framework to understand it. 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 informs us, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” In these seasons of trial, we find assurance that our pain is not meaningless; instead, it is a part of the human experience.

The Presence of God in Our Struggles:

During tragedy, it may feel as though God is distant or absent. However, the Bible assures us that God is intimately acquainted with our suffering. Psalm 34:18 declares, “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Even when our circumstances seem overwhelming, we can find comfort in knowing that our Heavenly Father is near, offering His unfailing love and compassion.

The Assurance of God’s Promises:

Seeing beyond the pain and devastation when tragedy strikes can be challenging. However, the Bible assures us of God’s promises and His faithfulness even in the darkest moments. Psalm 34:17-18 reminds us, “The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” These verses assure us that when we cry out to God in our distress, He hears our prayers and is with us, offering comfort, deliverance, and salvation.

The Hope of Eternal Life:

In times of tragedy, we are challenged to accept the brevity and fragility of life. However, the Bible offers the hope of eternal life beyond the confines of this world. In John 14:2-3, Jesus said, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” This promise assures us that, even in the face of death, there is a greater hope that transcends our earthly sorrows.

Tragedy has the potential to upend our lives and challenge our faith, but in darkness, the Bible offers us a beacon of hope. Through its timeless wisdom, we know that suffering is not the end of the story. As we acknowledge the reality of our pain, embrace the presence of God in our struggles, trust in His power of redemption, and cling to the hope of eternal life, we can find the strength to persevere and rise above the ashes of tragedy. Let us remember the words of Romans 15:13, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”

~PW 🌮🛶

Navigating Your First Full-Time Job: Some Spiritual Insights

Congratulations on entering this new chapter of your life as you enter your first full-time job after college. As you embark on this journey, I want to share some invaluable spiritual advice inspired by the timeless wisdom of the scriptures. Together, let’s explore how these insights can guide you in your career and personal growth.

  1. Trust God’s Guidance in Every Step: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths” (Proverbs 3:5-6, ESV). Acknowledge that God is your ultimate guide. Seek His wisdom and submit your plans to Him, allowing Him to direct your path.
  2. Embrace a Servant’s Heart: “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45, ESV). Adopt a mindset of service. Approach your work with humility, always seeking opportunities to make a positive impact on those around you.
  3. Walk in Integrity and Honesty: “Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out” (Proverbs 10:9, ESV). Prioritize integrity and honesty in every aspect of your professional life. Let your actions align with your beliefs, and let your character shine brightly.
  4. Strive for a Healthy Work-Life Balance: “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, ESV). Understand the importance of maintaining a healthy work-life balance. Set boundaries, allocate time for rest, relationships, and personal growth, and trust that God’s design encompasses both work and leisure.
  5. Pursue Excellence and Diligence: “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” (Colossians 3:23, ESV). Approach your work with diligence and a commitment to excellence. Regardless of the nature of your job, strive to honor God through your dedicated efforts.
  6. Embrace Perseverance and Resilience: “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness” (James 1:2-3, ESV). Embrace challenges as opportunities for growth. Trust that God is refining your character and developing resilience through the trials you encounter.
  7. Foster Meaningful Relationships: “Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm” (Proverbs 13:20, ESV). Surround yourself with positive influences and seek to build meaningful relationships in your workplace. Connect with mentors, colleagues, and individuals who can support your spiritual and professional journey.
  8. Cultivate Gratitude and Contentment: “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18, ESV). Develop a heart of gratitude. Choose contentment over comparison, and find joy in the present moment, appreciating the opportunities and challenges that come your way.
  9. Shine Your Light in the Workplace: “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16, ESV). Allow your faith to shine through your actions, attitudes, and interactions at work. Be a positive influence and let the love of Christ radiate through you.
  10. Trust God’s Provision and Timing: “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps” (Proverbs 16:9, ESV). Trust in God’s provision and timing for your career. Be patient and faithful, knowing that He has a purpose for you in every season and will guide you along the way.
  11. Walk with Purpose: “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” (Colossians 3:23, ESV). When walking in the workplace, move with a sense of purpose and determination. Even if you are heading to or from the bathroom, walking quickly conveys a proactive and driven attitude that catches the attention of others.
  12. Respect Others’ Time: “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves” (Philippians 2:3, ESV). Avoid sitting down in someone else’s office unless invited to do so. Respect their time and prioritize their needs. Show humility and consideration in all your interactions.
  13. Be Prepared to Learn: “Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future.” (Proverbs 19:20 ESV). When called to someone’s office, always carry a paper and pen. Demonstrate that you value their insights and guidance by being prepared to take notes and show active engagement.
  14. Follow the Golden Rule: “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 7:12, ESV). Treat others with kindness, compassion, and respect. Open doors for your colleagues, show them how to do tasks you excel at, and wear a smile that brightens the workplace. Take responsibility for mistakes and share credit for achievements, fostering a collaborative and supportive work environment.

As you embark on your first full-time job after college, remember to dress for the next job, walk with purpose, respect others’ time, be prepared to learn, and follow the Golden Rule. Trust in God’s guidance and provision, embrace a servant’s heart, and prioritize integrity and excellence in all you do. May your career journey be marked by spiritual growth, fulfillment, and the blessings that come from living out God’s principles in the workplace.

~PW 🌮🛶

Isaiah 47.3 and Nakedness

While reading through Isaiah 47 recently I came across this:

1Come down and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon; sit on the ground without a throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans! For you shall no more be called tender and delicate.
2Take the millstones and grind flour, put off your veil, strip off your robe, uncover your legs, pass through the rivers.
3Your nakedness shall be uncovered, and your disgrace shall be seen. I will take vengeance, and I will spare no one.
4Our Redeemer—the Lord of hosts is his name— is the Holy One of Israel.

Isaiah 47:1–4 (ESV)

Over the years I’ve heard a lot of talk about how the meaning of this passage should be read narrowly as suggesting that an uncovered thigh is a key to our understanding of nakedness.* Given the context of Leviticus, I don’t think that is the case. This is better read when connected with Leviticus 18.

1And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2“Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, I am the Lord your God. 3You shall not do as they do in the land of Egypt, where you lived, and you shall not do as they do in the land of Canaan, to which I am bringing you. You shall not walk in their statutes. 4You shall follow my rules and keep my statutes and walk in them. I am the Lord your God. 5You shall therefore keep my statutes and my rules; if a person does them, he shall live by them: I am the Lord. 6“None of you shall approach any one of his close relatives to uncover nakedness. I am the Lord.
7You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father, which is the nakedness of your mother; she is your mother, you shall not uncover her nakedness.
8You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s wife; it is your father’s nakedness.
9You shall not uncover the nakedness of your sister, your father’s daughter or your mother’s daughter, whether brought up in the family or in another home.
10You shall not uncover the nakedness of your son’s daughter or of your daughter’s daughter, for their nakedness is your own nakedness.
11You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s wife’s daughter, brought up in your father’s family, since she is your sister.
12You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s sister; she is your father’s relative.
13You shall not uncover the nakedness of your mother’s sister, for she is your mother’s relative.
14You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s brother, that is, you shall not approach his wife; she is your aunt.
15You shall not uncover the nakedness of your daughter-in-law; she is your son’s wife, you shall not uncover her nakedness.
16You shall not uncover the nakedness of your brother’s wife; it is your brother’s nakedness.
17You shall not uncover the nakedness of a woman and of her daughter, and you shall not take her son’s daughter or her daughter’s daughter to uncover her nakedness; they are relatives; it is depravity.
18And you shall not take a woman as a rival wife to her sister, uncovering her nakedness while her sister is still alive.

Leviticus 18:1-18

The meaning here is more clearly about the full import of their adultery with all of its awful implications. Babylon is condemned for their rebellion, they were to be cast down and their sins exposed.

Such is the same awful end for any who would rebel against God. So my prayer today is that we maintain our vow to our creator and King Jesus until the last trump shall sound.

~PW 🌮🛶

*(FYI, I’ll suggest that the best biblical text for that is in the Garden, but we can go back to there another time.).

%d bloggers like this: