Loving the Unlovely

“But I say to you who listen: Love your enemies, do what is good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” (Luke 6:27–28) In our pursuit of “waging peace” – being peacemakers in a world of conflict – we eventually have to come to grips with […]

Love is the Answer

“But you, dear friends…” (Jude 20, CSB) That’s how Jude begins the final section of his short letter. Sometimes the most important words are the smallest and seemingly inconsequential. Imagine a scenario in which I tell my wife, “Babe, you’re beautiful, but…” I’d never say this, of course! She’d miss the fact that I called […]

Fire from Heaven?

“When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?” (Luke 9:54) I’ve got to be honest with you: This is sometimes my default response when things don’t go my way. In this passage, a village refused Jesus entrance. They rejected […]

Take Heart

“If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first. The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you. Do you remember what I told you? […]

“The Greatest Is Love” (1 Cor. 13:13)

Pray Psalm 119:18—  “Open my eyes that I may behold wonderful things from Your Law.” Read today’s chapter: 1 Corinthians 13.  Then read and apply the “Wonderful Thing” below.  Wonderful Thing – “The Greatest Is Love” (1 Cor. 13:13) Wonderful Thing in this Passage – As important as chapter 12’s spiritual gifts are to the church’s […]

Fear of Judgment?

 “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.“ (1 John 4:18, NIV) When I was a kid, I was a bit leery of Jesus’ return.  I know that sounds weird, because Jesus is anything […]

I Believe…

“…I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24, NIV) Do you sometimes feel like this is your life verse?  Me, too! The last few weeks at New Life we’ve been talking about reasons to believe in Christmas.  First and foremost is the fact that God loves you.  The idea that “God so loved […]

God Loves You

“Then he said to her, ‘Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.’ (Luke 8:48, NIV).” I love the story of the woman with the issue of blood in Luke 8. It is a story of having overcoming faith and being brave enough to push through obstacles. It should be a picture of every […]

Love is Kind

“Love is patient, love is kind. …it is not self-seeking…“ (1 Corinthians 13:4-5, NIV) We are halfway through “31 Days of Kindness” today at noon.  For me, it has been an eye-opening, introspective fifteen days.  On the one hand, I have discovered I’m a pretty nice guy.  I really do enjoy doing nice things for […]

Love One Another

““A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.“ (John 13:34, NIV) It seems our country is more divided than ever…politics, race, even gender are issues that pull Americans apart.  It’s even true in the church, to some degree. A friend of mine pastors […]

America’s “Self-Terrorism”

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not […]

Being the Church

Jesus was known to upset an applecart or two in his day. In his most famous sermon, he went through a whole list of cultural norms and modified them. One in particular was love. It is natural for us to love our friends and hate our enemies. But God wants us to extend our boundaries […]