Storm Shelter Session 1(The Shelter of God’s Presence): Well Placed Confidence

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In the face of life’s uncertainties, place your trust in God.  “I tell you, Peter,” He said, “the rooster will not crow today until you deny three times that you know Me!” (Luke 22:34). The words must have hung in the air, pointed and powerful. The disciples had just been arguing about who was to […]

Ministry in the Face of Mental Illness: Excerpt from “Melissa” by Frank Page

This is Chapter 1 of Melissa: A Father’s Lessons From a Daughter’s Suicide by Frank Page You’re Not Alone I was in my yard-working clothes when the call came. It was Friday morning. The day after Thanksgiving. Ten more minutes and I’d likely have been out on my mower, cutting the grass in preparation for getting […]

Overcome, Session 6: Second Chances at First Loves

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   God makes a new home for a widow, a widower, and their five children. by Gina Kell Spehn A child is born. He is mine. I’m made for him and he for me. Wonder and awe, that through me he arrived. My firstborn has me feeling poetic about life. Deep. Captivated. Suddenly fearful. My need […]

Overcome, Session 5 (Overcome Bitterness): Doing Good For All

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by Gene A . Getz  This title comes from the apostle Paul’s letter to the Galatians:  “So we must not get tired of doing good. … Therefore, as we have opportunity, we must work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith” (Gal. 6:9-10).  As I opened my […]

Overcome, Session 3: Hope for the Barren Heart

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In the bleak mid-winter of your soul, God plants a garden of faith. by Aaron Householder Fear is natural. Faith is supernatural. When we don’t understand and can’t overcome, we react in fear. It’s a natural response of humanity. Our fear may paralyze us in depression or indecision. Or our fear may motivate us to […]

Overcome, Session 2: Idols Away

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Rid your life of the things that stand between you and God. by Aaron Householder Picture an 8-year-old boy’s messy room. It’s scattered with action figures, books, and games. Don’t forget to watch your step for Legos® lying low like land mines. And then there’s that little boy who’s been playing outside. His stench fills the room, too. Whew! Now, […]

Overcome, Session 1: Finding Your Way Out of the Desert

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by Jim Johnston One of my favorite television shows is Man vs. Wild, an ingenious reality show that attempts to show you how to survive in any number of hostile environments—from the Costa Rican rainforest to the Alaskan frontier to a wide array of desert locations. The host is an aptly named British gentleman named […]

Connected, Session 5 (Connected in Service): All Excuses Ceasing

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by Susan Childress This year, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated the 60th anniversary of her coronation. In 1953, she sent special invitations to the coronation. The invitations were inscribed, “all excuses ceasing.” In other words, there is no RSVP — you’re expected to be there, no excuses. Today, you are invited and expected to accept an […]

Connected, Session 4: Walk the Line

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  How to navigate conflict with a balance of truth and grace by Daniel Darling I was having a particularly rough day at the office, and I carelessly left a weapon lying around — my email inbox. Chafed at a colleague who publically embarrassed me in a team meeting, I composed a bitter and sarcastic […]

Connected, Session 3: Beyond the Casserole

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by Karen S. Robertson Upon the recent death of our mother, my family experienced an outpouring of love. Delicious cakes, pies, and casseroles appeared at our door. But help also came in other ways, teaching us to think outside the box when helping someone else struggling with grief. Stand in the gap. Offer to house-sit, […]