Francisco Osorio. ccby2.0
Believing Together December 7, 2016

Despite the differences in their situations – the unlikely pregnancy of an old woman who bore the shame of barrenness for years and the completely impossible pregnancy of a young unwed virgin – these two women faced many of the same challenges as first-time mothers.

Essays

Josh Willink. CC0License

Joseph the Imperturbable

For Joseph, there is little comfort in store. He will take in a wife about whom others whisper. He will make a cross-country trek with this wife while she is large with child, walking while she rides a donkey, only to see her give birth to the child not only among strangers, but among animals in a stable—the only place that Joseph could find for her.

feet_on_scale

Can a Fat Person Be Made in the Image of God?

We’re told that people look at the outward appearance, but that God looks at the heart. I’m still only beginning to realize just how beautiful it is that our God doesn’t look at us the way we look at each other.

Spotlights

donterase / Pixabay

Why I Want to Work in the Church

When I tell people that I want to work in the church, what I mean is I want to work in a community of love. I still love all the liturgy, the details, and the formalities that go into the church, but more importantly, I want to be a part of the living, breathing, and fully alive body of Christ.

lomarog / Pixabay

Slow Down

I like the problem-solving logistics of cramming as much as I possibly can into a full day, whether it be work or play. That approach can really pay off in a work environment where juggling multiple projects and deadlines is key to conquering a to-do list. But it’s not great way to live all of life, in general.

Photo by Theophilos Papadopoulos ccbyncnd 2.0

Intentional Living

A “God in tears” compels me to cultivate deep relationships and put into practice the way of Jesus. It is his expression of perfect love choosing to enter into our suffering that compels my heart to sing!

Devotions

mploscar / Pixabay

Heart-Orientation

A fruit tree that doesn’t bear fruit, like the one that belonged to my in-laws, is worthless. Its lack of fruit indicates that something is wrong with the entire tree. Similarly, Jesus uses the harsh words in today’s lectionary passage to reveal that the Pharisee’s heart-orientation is wrong at the core.

Nita CC0license

God’s Goodness for the Kingdom

We live in an interesting age. Most of the time now, it feels like the church is being, at best, marginalized, or perhaps – more often – trampled underfoot. Many scriptural truths are scorned by society at large, with that scorn perhaps teetering on the brink of tipping toward outright persecution.

USFWS Mountain-Prairie, CCBY2.0

Praise in the Drought

As you wait this Christmas season, in the midst of drought or at the onset of a long winter, as you wait for the promised one who we all need no matter how great or small, look around at what God has wrought, how he might be bringing to birth a new creation even in the midst of drought—and praise!