Jesus still gets mixed reviews. Regardless, God is being discussed in our popular culture, which affords us a chance to engage in healthy dialogue with our acquaintances.
- Daily Devotional, November 28, 2011 "The Heart of Christmas by Matthew West"11/26/2011 - Picture this: Three brothers, ages five, ten, and twelve have awakened long before the sun. It's the wee hours of Christmas morning and these three brothers have no intention of sleeping in or spending a lazy morning laying around. No, they are on a mission. In the basement, there awaits a Christmas tree surrounded by mountains of gifts wrapped and waiting to be torn into, and these boys are ready to claim their share of the take.
- Daily Devotional, November 25, 2011 "Dogs, Cats & Whales"11/24/2011 - Frank’s dog tormented cats. So when Thor broke free one day and ran off, Frank got a bad feeling. Sure enough, the dog snatched a poor, unsuspecting cat in its jaws. But then, out of the shadows, came a furious streak of gray—another cat! Launching itself onto Thor’s back, it viciously raked the dog’s eyes and nose. The hapless hound promptly freed his victim, but the attack continued.
- Daily Devotional, November 24, 2011 "Faith In The Famine"11/23/2011 - During the time period of the Kings, Israel didn’t forsake God, but they mixed faith in Him with faith in gods of fertility and rain. Perhaps they were thinking: It can’t hurt to ask a few more gods for a bountiful harvest, right?
- Daily Devotional, November 23, 2011 "The Privilege of Children"11/22/2011 - Erik Hatzinger confessed to stealing money from several businesses over many months. He seems to be repentant, for when the judge ordered him to pay $13,000 in restitution, Erik informed the judge that he had stolen more and would like to pay it all back. “That’s the son I raised,” his mother told a reporter.
- Daily Devotional, November 22, 2011 "Wife Carrying"11/22/2011 - Contestants in the Wife Carrying World Championships meet in the Finnish town of Sonkajärvi. During the contest, men tote their wives a full 831 feet through gravel, grass, and sand, over two obstacles and through water. Dropping your wife means a 15-second penalty—not to mention dealing with an angry woman.
- Daily Devotional, November 21, 2011 "Cheaters"11/20/2011 - Business professor Richard Quinn was disgusted. By careful analysis, he discovered that many of his students had cheated on their midterm exam. So he did what professors do best—he gave the students a lecture . . . on ethics. His message? Confess that you have cheated, and then the remainder of your classwork will determine your grade.
- Daily Devotional, November 18, 2011 "Forget The Devil?"11/17/2011 - Martyn Lloyd-Jones once said: “I am certain that one of the main causes of the ill state of the church today is the fact that the devil is being forgotten. We have become so psychological in our attitude and thinking. We are ignorant of this great objective fact—the being, the existence of the devil, the adversary, the accuser.”
- Daily Devotional, November 17, 2011 "Tuition Nation"11/16/2011 - According to a study conducted by a local newspaper in Singapore, 97 out of 100 students polled have private tutors or receive supplemental training at academic centers. So common are these practices that Singapore has been called the “tuition nation.”
- Daily Devotional, November 16, 2011 "Martyrville"11/15/2011 - A person recently lamented to me, “I don’t get it. Why do all my relationships keep breaking down? I want to get along better with my family and have closer friendships, but I find myself in nearly impossible circumstances over and over again.”
- Daily Devotional, November 15, 2011 "The Choice Is Yours"11/14/2011 - A missionary friend who has lived in Uganda for nearly 20 years recently told me that his wife doesn’t enjoy their family’s annual trip to the United States. The reason? “There are too many choices there!” she says.
- Daily Devotional, November 14, 2011 "What Is a Christian?"11/13/2011 - Under “religious views” on her Facebook profile, my wife lists the simple phrase “Jesus-follower.” She uses that explanatory term to avoid political and cultural connotations associated with the word Christian. In some cultures, people are “born Christian.” But that is a misunderstanding of what it means to follow Jesus.
- Daily Devotional, November 11, 2011 "No Fear"11/10/2011 - Imagine sashaying through life with no fear. One woman knows what it feels like to be fear-free. Researchers exposed her to snakes and spiders, led her through a haunted house, and showed her scary flicks. No fear. Real death threats and being robbed at gunpoint left her (happily) whistling in the dark. Why?
- Daily Devotional, November 10, 2011 "Slightly Off?"11/10/2011 - Argh . . . I’m no longer perfect.” I groaned inwardly. The realization struck me when we replaced our home television with a 42-inch set. The color was good, the sound perfect, but what happened to the subtitles? Why were they so blurry? I had lost my 20-20 vision! My doctor informed me that my left-eye vision is slightly off by a few degrees.
- Daily Devotional, November 9, 2011 "Death-Defining Moments"11/8/2011 - You guys, line up alphabetically by height.” Huh? “We’re going to turn this team around 360 degrees.” What? These are two of many other bizarre quotes I came across recently. Solomon said some pretty odd and outlandish things too. For instance, he wrote: “The day you die is better than the day you are born” (Ecclesiastes 7:1).
- Daily Devotional, November 8, 2011 "The Far Side"11/7/2011 - One of the perks of global travel is moving out of your comfort zone—running into things and people you’d never expect to encounter. I took a trip down the Venezuelan Amazon once, discovering that piranhas are real and that monkey stew isn’t a legend. Moses was living in Midian, so he was a long way from home in Egypt. A Hebrew, he had killed an Egyptian he saw beating a Hebrew slave.
- Daily Devotional, November 7, 2011 "Lead On"11/6/2011 - Spending much of my childhood in the cool north of the US, I always thought of palm trees as something exotic. So when we traveled down to South Carolina to visit family every few years, I felt as if I was somewhere near Hawaii, even though I knew deep waters and many miles separated the two states.
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