Grasping For God

…no one can know or see the very essence of God.  He is so glorious, and his glory so infinite, that we would be consumed.

– Matthew Barrett in None Greater

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God Loves You

God loves you.  He proved it by coming to earth as a baby for you.  He proved it by dying on a cross for you. He proved it by forgiving your sin, and giving you a new life with Him now and forevermore.

God loves you – that might be most important you hear today.

God loves you.  But maybe you doubt it because of some sin in your life, and you wonder how he could love someone like you.  But he came and died to pay for that sin, to wash away all the shame and guilt of that sin. That sin is gone.  And he did it, because he loves you.

God loves you.  But maybe you doubt it because of some suffering in your life.  If God loved me, why am I going through this?

But his love is not found in keeping us from suffering.  We live in a fallen world, and because of that, there is sickness and death and tragedy and terrible actions by others.  We will suffer.

Jesus suffered, and we will suffer too.

But his love is not found in keeping us from suffering.  Rather, his love is found in being there to help us in our suffering.  He will never leave you nor forsake you.  He is with you always to end of age. 

And at end the end of the age, He will come again and bring all of our suffering to an end.

He came for you.  He died for you.  He washed away all your sins.  He purchased a new life for you.  He is with you in your trials.  And he is coming again for you.  All because he loves you.

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Grasping for God

What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.

– A.W. Tozer in The Knowledge of the Holy

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Coming Back

Just a quick note to say that I am planning to resume my blog next week. My plan is to post four times a week – including a reflection, a Passion Points collection of articles, and a couple of quotes. We’ll see how it goes!

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Passion Points

Here are some good pots for your weekend reading:

10 Things You Should Know about Prayer – Donald Whitney (Crossway)
…pray the Bible; that is, to turn the words of Scripture into prayer. The Psalms are ideal for this, but you can also go back and pray through part of your Scripture reading for the day.

The Elusive Trait of Reasonableness – Mark Loughridge (GR)
True wisdom is persuadable or open to reason. It recognizes that we don’t always get it right. That we haven’t necessarily arrived at our final opinion on every matter. That we have our biases, limitations, and blind spots. That situations change and new factors need to be taken into account.  Reasonableness is a practical outworking of our finitude. We don’t have all the answers, we don’t have infinite knowledge, and we are sinners. In short, we can be wrong.

Drained and Depressed by the Internet? Go Outside. – Brett McCracken (TGC)
More than our smallness, nature should remind us of God’s bigness. And that’s ultimately where the “peace” is found—resting in the sovereignty of a God who designed the anthill as well as the Andes, the delicate petals of a rose as well as the sturdy structure of a sycamore tree.

The Small Change That Can Radically Improve Your Church Experience – Aaron Earls (F&T)  I believe one simple change can revolutionize your Sunday morning experience: get there a little early and stay a little late.  Showing up to church 15 minutes before the service starts and hanging around 15 minutes after the service ends can make all the difference. Here’s how….

Hope you have a great Lord’s Day with your local church (in whatever way possible)!

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J.I. Packer

Packer

Another Christian giant has fallen – or better – been taken to be with his Lord, passing away July 17, 2020.  He had an early impact on me through his book, Knowing God, which  I read as a teen.  Rediscovering Holiness and The Quest For Godliness helped to teach me that salvation was meant to change your life.  More recently, Grounded in the Gospel, which he co-authored with Gary Parrett, helped me better think through Christian education.  I thank the Lord for him.

Here is a short biography, a few other tributes, and a collection of quotes:

J. I. Packer (1926–2020) – Justin Taylor

J. I. Packer: A Personal Appreciation – Ray Ortlund

J. I. Packer’s Final Words to the Church – Ivan Mesa (TGC)

10 Things You Should Know about J. I. Packer – Leland Ryken (Crossway)

40 Quotes from J. I. Packer (1926–2020) – Matt Smethurst (TGC)

 

 

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Out West – Day 14

WestBlog14

One year ago was our family’s out west trip. It was amazing how everywhere we looked, we saw the Creator’s handiwork, and yet no mention of Him on the signs or in the literature. And so I am remembering our trip with pictures of God’s amazing creation, and adding Scriptures to keep the focus on our amazing Creator. Today was our 14th and final day out west – Petrified Forest in AZ.

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Out West – Day 13

WestBlog13

One year ago was our family’s out west trip. It was amazing how everywhere we looked, we saw the Creator’s handiwork, and yet no mention of Him on the signs or in the literature. And so I am remembering our trip with pictures of God’s amazing creation, and adding Scriptures to keep the focus on our amazing Creator. Today was our 13th day out west – Grand Canyon, South Rim in AZ.

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Out West – Day 12

WestBlog12

One year ago was our family’s out west trip. It was amazing how everywhere we looked, we saw the Creator’s handiwork, and yet no mention of Him on the signs or in the literature. And so I am remembering our trip with pictures of God’s amazing creation, and adding Scriptures to keep the focus on our amazing Creator. Today was our 12th day out west – Grand Canyon, North Rim in AZ.

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Out West – Day 11

WestBlog11

One year ago was our family’s out west trip. It was amazing how everywhere we looked, we saw the Creator’s handiwork, and yet no mention of Him on the signs or in the literature. And so I am remembering our trip with pictures of God’s amazing creation, and adding Scriptures to keep the focus on our amazing Creator. Today was our 11th day out west – Bryce Canyon in Utah.  An amazing place!

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