January 1, 2023 @ 8:00 AM

As we begin this brand-new year of 2023, I believe it is important to look back at things we have learned during the past 12 months. I call them “take-aways.” They are the things we have learned through another year of living, experiencing, and growing – or not. They are the things we have learned through our daily experiences (good and bad), in our spiritual journey and times in God’s Word, and things we have learned from others and from our own personal observation. This can result in wisdom, but there are no guarantees since some people do not learn from the past. Wisdom is the application of knowledge and includes insight and understanding. Much can be learned from the past—both our own personal past and ...

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January 1, 2023 @ 8:00 AM

Let me share my thoughts on conflict with you. My belief is that “change is wrought in the crucible of conflict.” What do I mean by that? It is my belief that change in a person’s life seldom happens when everything is going well. Most of us live by the logic, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” so if things are going well why change? We change in response to pain: physical, emotional, relational, or spiritual. One of the primary sources of pain is conflict. Conflict causes us to experience physical symptoms such as the increased flow of adrenaline, an accelerated heart rate and rapid breathing, sweaty palms, a flush face, and wider pupils.

Conflict also causes us to experience emotional symptoms. We...

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January 1, 2023 @ 8:00 AM

We see this logic play out before us every day. The end justifies the means. In other words, as long as the end goal is achieved it doesn’t matter how we achieve it. This is not only unethical thinking but leads to immoral behavior. One of the clearest examples we see is in politics. As long as my candidate wins the election it doesn’t matter how he or she does it. If we need to cheat so the candidate can win, we cheat. If we need to trash the good name of our opponent to win, we trash away. If we need to lie to win, we lie.

This convoluted thinking is not only seen in politics. We see it all the time in business, in the church, and even in families. In business we may lie, steal, or cheat as long as we make the sale and get ...

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January 1, 2023 @ 8:00 AM

Have you ever thought about how our universe displays the glory of God? It does. Think of how the Trinity of God is on display: The universe is a spectacular testament to the Trinity. All the universe is composed of space, time, and matter yet all the universe is space, all the universe is time, and all the universe is matter.  One of the greatest displays of God as a Trinity is human beings. All of us are composed of three parts. We are all physical (body), all psychological (soul), and all spiritual (spirit). There are many more examples which could be cited but suffice it to say, God’s handiwork is seen in all His creation (Psalm 19:1, Ephesians 2:10).

This is no more true than in the temple of the Old Testament. Revelation ...

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December 1, 2022 @ 8:00 AM

You’ve heard it and so have I. “Jesus wasn’t born on December 25th. That’s simply Catholic tradition or the celebration of a Druid festival.” I don’t agree. The December 25th date for Christ’s birth is not a date arbitrarily chosen because it coincides with a Catholic or pagan tradition. There are solid grounds for believing that the church venerated that date for good reason. Jesus Christ was actually born in Bethlehem of Judea on the 25th of December.

You ask, “Okay, Irv, what are your grounds for believing that?” Let me share them with you. Probably no one has given more thought to the date of Christ’s birth than Alfred Edersheim. Alfred Edersheim (March 7, 1825 – March ...

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December 1, 2022 @ 8:00 AM

In 2 Corinthians 10:5 the Apostle Paul writes an intriguing verse.  Here's what it says,  "We are destroying arguments and all arrogance raised against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ." I want to zero in on the last phase of this verse, "we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ."      

Clearly the "we" in this passage is referring to believers in Christ but what does it mean by "taking every thought captive?" Then the next question becomes how do we do that? First let's define terms.  What is a thought anyway? A thought is something about which your mind thinks.  It might be ...

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December 1, 2022 @ 8:00 AM

Last August Elsie and I went on vacation to Charleston, SC. We saw some old friends, toured the historical sites, explored a working plantation, and enjoyed our time there immensely except . . . the day before we were to depart, I accidentally spilled a full cup of scalding hot coffee on my right foot. The coffee was hot enough to produce second degree burns. Burns like those don’t heal quickly because of the thinness of the skin on top of the foot and the difficulty of preventing infection. Here we are nearly three months since the accident and my foot is just about healed! I can finally wear real shoes instead of slippers.

Have you ever experienced a slow healing wound? Perhaps it was physical like mine. Those wounds are painful ...

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December 1, 2022 @ 8:00 AM

“Once upon a mountain top, three little trees stood and dreamed of what they wanted to become when they grew up.

The first little tree looked up at the stars and said: ‘I want to hold treasure. I want to be covered with gold and filled with precious stones. I’ll be the most beautiful treasure chest in the world!’

The second little tree looked out at the small stream trickling by on its way to the ocean. ‘I want to be traveling mighty waters and carrying powerful kings. I’ll be the strongest ship in the world.’

The third little tree looked down into the valley below where busy men and women worked in a busy town. ‘I don’t want to leave the mountain top at all. I want to grow so tall ...

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November 1, 2022 @ 9:00 AM

The Battle of Gettysburg, fought on July 1–3, 1863, was the turning point of the Civil War. Robert E. Lee's plan to invade the North and force an immediate end to the war failed. The little town of Gettysburg held no military significance, but several roads converged there. On June 30, 1863, advance cavalry elements of the Union Army began arriving at Gettysburg, and 7,000 Confederates were sent to investigate.

The following day the battle began in a place neither Lee nor his Union counterpart, General George Meade, would have chosen on purpose. It was almost as if the roads just happened to bring their armies to that point on the map.

As the Battle of Gettysburg developed on July 1st, the Union troops held a...

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November 1, 2022 @ 9:00 AM

At approximately 10 p.m. on March 1, 1932, the Lindberghs' nurse, Betty Gow, found that 20-month-old Charles Augustus Lindbergh Jr. was not with his mother, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, who had just come out of the bathtub. Gow then alerted Charles Lindbergh, who immediately went to the child's room, where he found a ransom note, containing bad handwriting and grammar, in an envelope on the windowsill. Taking a gun, Lindbergh went around the house and grounds with family butler, Olly Whateley; they found impressions in the ground under the window of the baby's room, pieces of a wooden ladder, and a baby's blanket. Whateley telephoned the Hopewell police department while Lindbergh contacted his attorney and ...

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