Too Big for the Birdhouse

Birdhouses for the eastern bluebird (indigenous to our area), have a circular entrance hole 1½” in diameter. Any smaller, and an adult bluebird cannot get in. Any larger, and things other than the bluebird will find their way in (not good). The story doesn’t end here. It seems some non-bluebird animals, despite their restrictive size,Continue reading “Too Big for the Birdhouse”

The Fruit of Gratitude

Humility is the fruit of gratitude. We all know the feeling when someone does something special for us or gives us something significant—we are indebted to them. The most appropriate response we can make is to say thank-you because we are touched and humbled by their generosity. That’s the way it is with our Father. As weContinue reading “The Fruit of Gratitude”

What Are You Wearing?

Hans Christian Andersen’s The Emperor’s New Clothes is one of those wonderful stories for children that has much to say to adults. If you remember, the emperor is a boastful sort who is taken advantage of by two tailors promising to make him the finest set of clothes ever seen—sort of. The catch is that the clothes are soContinue reading “What Are You Wearing?”

Blind Spots and Due Diligence (2)

When Jesus spoke to the church located at Sardis, they were making the same mistake spiritually that their descendants had made militarily centuries before. They had a reputation and they were arrogantly living off of that. Because of their overconfidence, they had left some things unfinished that needed to be done—but they didn’t care. They had started believingContinue reading “Blind Spots and Due Diligence (2)”

Grace and Community (2)

Both pop psychology and American culture thrive on playing up to our individualism. You’re different! You’re unique! You’re not like anyone else! Snowflakes, fingerprints, and DNA are all called in to make the case for how wonderfully special we are. And while that’s true, it’s a partial truth that needs balancing because we hear itContinue reading “Grace and Community (2)”

Childish or Child-like?

There’s an intriguing picture in Psalm 131. It is offered to further develop and reveal the pilgrims’ perspective as they neared Jerusalem. After confessing they had steered clear of presumptuous matters (“things too wonderful for me”), we are told, “I am like a weaned child with its mother.” Not simply a child—but a weaned child.Continue reading “Childish or Child-like?”

State of the Heart

Psalm 131 consists of a mere fifty-nine words parceled out over three verses (NIV). Because of this, there is the temptation to treat it like a headline—grab the central thought and move on. We’d be poorer for doing so though because the psalms aren’t spiritual fast food. They are not meant to be gulped downContinue reading “State of the Heart”