Blessed are you, O Lord

5TH WEEK OF LENT   Blessed are you, O Lord.    There’s one detail to this story that we often overlook:   Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego sang God’s praises, not after they had   been delivered from the fiery furnace, but while they were in the midst of the flames.   These three young men were prepared not to be saved.   Even before they were rescued from the furnace, they exulted in God’s goodness and glory. It’s natural to praise God’s...

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The one who sent me is with me

5TH WEEK OF LENT   The one who sent me is with me.    We know that God sent Jesus into the world to accomplish the mission of saving us from sin, but did you know that he didn’t send him out alone?   As Jesus makes clear in today’s Gospel (John 8:21-30), his Father was with him at every moment.   Now, because of our baptism, this is also true for us.   When God sends us out, he remains with us.   Here is a story that illustrates this truth....

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Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life

5TH WEEK OF LENT   Only goodness and kindness follow me all the days of my life.   What is it like to be “followed” by goodness and kindness?   One sense of the Hebrew word for “follow” is “to chase after.”   That can sound pretty negative.   It can make you think of a policeman chasing a criminal or a dog chasing a cat. But “follow” can also mean “to pursue” or “to attend closely to.”   While “chase after” might enkindle dread, God’s pursuit...

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Quote of the Week | March 30, 2020

“I do believe that when we face challenges in life that are far beyond our own power, it’s an opportunity to build on our faith, inner strength, and courage.   I’ve learned that how we face challenges plays a big role in the outcome of them.” –Sasha Azevedo

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Never before has anyone spoken like this man

4TH WEEK OF LENT   Never before has anyone spoken like this man.    There’s a lot of confusion in this passage (John 7:40-53).   Some thought Jesus was a prophet.   Others thought he was the Messiah.   Others doubted that he was anything special because of his place of birth.   And still others thought he should be arrested because his words scandalized so many of the religious leaders. But there was one group of people who wasn’t confused: ...

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I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me.

4TH WEEK OF LENT   I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me.    Where are you from?   How many times have you been asked that question?   We usually respond with the names of the city, state, or country where we grew up or have lived for a long time.   That place has become part of our identity.   The way we talk, the foods we eat, the sports teams we root for—all these and more are often influenced by where we come from. The people in...

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There is another who testifies on my behalf

4TH WEEK OF LENT   There is another who testifies on my behalf.    The religious leaders want to kill Jesus.   Not only has he cured a man on the Sabbath, but by calling God his Father, he is “making himself equal to God” (John 5:18).   Who is he to make such a claim?   But Jesus points out that not only John the Baptist but the Scriptures and his own works testify to who he is (5:33, 36).   Then, he says that his heavenly Father testifies on...

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