Storm Shelter, Session 4 (The Shelter of God’s Encouragement): What to Do When Emotionally Under Siege

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by Rich Mussler “I call to You from the ends of the earth WHEN MY HEART IS WITHOUT STRENGTH. Lead me to a rock that is high above me” (Ps. 61:2).  In recent years, Americans have experienced quite a bit of tragedy as a nation, and such events can leave us feeling emotionally drained. This […]

Storm Shelter, Session 3 (The Shelter of God’s Forgiveness): Released From Hatred, Free to Forgive

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by GREG ASIMAKOUPOULOS On September 2, 1945, a 19-year-old Marine stood 20 feet behind General Douglas MacArthur on the battleship USS Missouri as the Instrument of Surrender, which ended Word War II, was signed. That 19-year-old Marine who witnessed history was my father. FROM THE TIME I WAS A LITTLE BOY, I can remember my […]

Making Plans For Christmas: Defeat the Holiday Doldrums

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by Shirley Pope Waite For the first time since I was a young single,  I’D BE ALONE for Christmas.  My daughter lived in South Carolina on the other side of the country. One son had just started a new job and couldn’t take time off. Another had previously been scheduled to work all Christmas week. […]

Storm Shelter Session 2 (The Shelter of God’s Salvation): Great is God’s Faithfulness

  Afshin and Meredith Ziafat stand on the Word of God and the grace of the gospel. by Emily Ellis “My story is not about a man’s faithfulness to God; it’s about God’s faithfulness to a man.” These are the words of speaker, author, and pastor of Providence Church in Frisco, Texas, Afshin Ziafat. Afshin’s […]

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: Meeting God at the Intersection of Expectation and Disappointment

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by John Koessler A little more than a month after his son’s tragic death by suicide, Pastor Rick Warren made what some might consider to be a disturbing admission. He confessed that he had prayed regularly and sincerely for a different outcome to his son’s life. “For 27 years, I prayed every day of my […]

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 4: No Surprises

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God’s presence and faithfulness are sufficient for all your needs. By Scott Attebery It may be the most creative question ever posed. Out of the blue, my son, Bryce, loves to ask, “Aren’t you forgetting something?” Then he loves to wait in silence to see if I can guess from the 43 billion possible things […]

Overcome, Session 3: Shelf Life

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by Carole Rodgers ANOTHER CHRISTMAS HAD PASSED. After finally getting my decorations down and packed away, I carried the boxes to the closet and gently lifted them up and onto the shelf.  I couldn’t help but notice in the packing that a good number of the decorations were beginning to show tell-tale signs of aging. […]