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Real life is what we know, but turned on its head

Morning: Psalm 66, 67; I Samuel 4:12-22; James 1:1-18
Evening: Psalm 19, 46; Matthew 19:23-30

Listen to these counter-cultural messages from Jesus, all in 8 verses: << It is hard for a rich person to live in God’s way. What is impossible for mortals is possible for God. If you loosen your grip on everything, your life will be richer. The first will be last and the last will be first. >> We think we have lived in a Christian society for hundreds of years.  In truth, our world has scarcely begun to hear Jesus’ teaching ... that we really live when we are no longer attached to our passions or our things.



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To what does Jesus call you?

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Neither faith nor unfaith depend on evidence

Morning: Psalms 20, 21;1 Kings 17:17–24; 3 John 1–15Evening: Psalms 23, 27: John 4:46–54
Some say they don’t believe in God because of what happens, or because of what doesn’t.  Others say they believe because signs and wonders convince them.  Both rely on evidence.  Jesus teaches that, when faith depends on signs and wonders, it’s not faith.  Belief seeks no evidence. The absence of signs and wonders does not disprove God’s existence any more than their presence proves it (although, as today’s story shows, signs and wonders can help!) Instead, faith means entrusting yourself to the other without conditions.  Then, see what happens.

Overcoming the power of death

Morning: Psalms 63:1-11, 98;Daniel 9:3-10; Hebrews 2:10-18
Evening: Psalm 103; John 12:44-50
People think Christianity is about life after death.  But it’s about living today free from the power of death, which is anything that keeps us from enjoying full lives.  Many institutions live in the thrall of the power of death … churches so devoted to tradition that they forget what it means; businesses more concerned with profit than with lives ruined by the environmental damage they cause; or governments more concerned with re-election than with serving the lives of citizens.  All these are instances of the power of death.  The Way of Jesus seeks to liberate us from death’s power.