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Tag: repentance

A Prayer of Repentance

A Prayer of Repentance

We come to you, Lord, knowing that you love us no matter of what. That’s why we dare to come to you, knowing that you will help us. We put our hearts and souls in your hand. Generous in love—God, give grace!     Huge in mercy—wipe out my bad record. Scrub away my guilt,     soak out my sins in your laundry. I know how bad I’ve been;     my sins are staring me down. (Psalm 51:1-3, MSG) We ask for grace to…

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Getting Ready for 2013

Getting Ready for 2013

Are you ready for 2013? Or do you know how to become ready for a new year? The web is bursting all kinds of self-help articles of how to make the best of 2013. But they leave me empty and unsatisfied. No matter how much planning I’d do for the new year, it does not solve the problems. If I have not ended this year well, the new year will be same old, same old. So the best preparation for…

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So Long, Silly Self-Help

So Long, Silly Self-Help

Do you try make yourself a better person? Or do you trust God work in you to make you a person of grace? There’s a world of difference between those two ways of life. Self-strength stages an illusion. God creates life. Self-effort causes stress. Jesus provides salvation. Self-help brings exhaustion. The Holy Spirit brings peace. Why is it that stopping self-improvement projects and waiting for God to perform change in us is out of our radar? Why is is that…

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(Un)just Like Jonah

(Un)just Like Jonah

We all know the the story of Jonah. We chuckle, we might find Jonah even endearing. We might marvel how God caught this runaway and especially how Jonah moved from being prayerless to praise-filled in the belly of the whale. Jonah experienced first-hand God’s mercy right then and there, probably for the first time in his life. Jonah knew God, we might even say that he had a relationship with God. But yet he was a stranger to grace. Suddenly…

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Choosing Obedience Over Obsession

Choosing Obedience Over Obsession

Yesterday we talked about Solomon who chose wisdom over wealth and how he was richly blessed. So inspiring! But this is unfortunately not how his life ended. But before his wisdom waned his reputation as a sage was widely known. Even the queen of Sheba came to test him with hard questions and she found all the reports of Solomon’s wisdom true. What happened to Solomon? His success was too much for him. He felt entitled to break the law…

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Watch Over Your Heart!

Watch Over Your Heart!

Our enemy is pretty good in selling lies to us. Unfortunately, we buy them. We are especially weak when the lie informs us that ‘we rule’. We want to believe it. We buy the lie because it makes us feel good, confident and powerful. I was reading this morning the last words of David in 1 Kings 2. David is instructing his successor Solomon. He is first giving very sage advice. Just like you’re expecting him to do. But then…

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Be Aware, Be Bold!

Be Aware, Be Bold!

God called Jeremiah to be his prophet. Right afterwards God gave him on the job training: The LORD asked me, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” I said, “A branch of an almond tree.” The LORD then said, “You are right, for I’m watching overmy word until it is fulfilled.” (Jeremiah 1: 11-12, CEB) There’s a word play going here in Hebrew. The Message translation catches the humorous zest between Jeremiah and God so well: God’s Message came to me: “What…

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Give Blessing in Return

Give Blessing in Return

Peter is one of the Bible characters whose spiritual growth impresses me time after time. He was passionate for Jesus from early on yet he didn’t first really understand what it meant to live for Jesus. But Peter was willing to learn, first from Jesus and later on from the Holy Spirit. Peter’s story is an encouraging example of heavenly spiritual formation, what it really means to grow in grace. Just think…Peter was the one who cut off the ear…

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Set Your Heart on God

Set Your Heart on God

Is your faith rooted in yourself or have you set your heart firmly on God? Is your faith truly grounded in God? Or do you still try to manipulate God in order to get what you want? Today God is calling us to examine our hearts and minds. Who does rule our hearts? Then Samuel said to the whole house of Israel , “If you are turning to the LORD with all your heart, then get rid of all the…

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Lent – A Time to Reflect & Repent

Lent – A Time to Reflect & Repent

“The New Testament word for repentance means changing one’s mind so that one’s views, values, goals, and ways are changed and one’s whole life is lived differently”, J.I. Packer states. “The change is radical, both inwardly and outwardly; mind and judgment, will and affections, behavior and lifestyle, motives and purposes, are all involved. Repenting means starting a new life.” Lent is a blessed time: we can slow down and actively reflect on our spiritual journey. We can chance the course…

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