Darkness Dispelled

Darkness Dispelled

A guest post by Tracy Stella…

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.—Matthew 5:14-16 NIV

My cousins and I looked forward to family gatherings.  We didn’t care the reason for the reunion as long as we were able to run around, free like the wind.  We girls giggled and galloped, hair tangled and snarled, as it trailed behind us mid-air.  The boys, destined to find dirt, always ended the day looking a bit disheveled.

Country living often equated to cavorting among cousins.

One of our favorite pastimes happened as dusk hovered over the horizon. Many a summer evening, we carried empty jars in the hope of capturing fireflies.  Their amber blink mesmerized us as they winked our way.  It was their light that attracted us as the fireflies flickered in the sky like some sort of Morse code. Blink. Blink. Blink, Blink. Blink — Blink — Blink.

The source of their light was a mystery to us. Continue reading

Take Pity, Take Action, Take Territory for Christ

Take Pity, Take Action, Take Territory for Christ

Today we have a guest post by Tracy Stella…

In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. … But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him.—Luke 10:30, 33 NIV

The Samaritan stopped in his tracks to take pity on the man who lay naked and half dead along the roadside.  The Samaritan was busy like you and I often are.  He was on his way to a destination, and he didn’t plan on encountering a detour.  Yet, he didn’t delay.  He came to the aid of the man in need of assistance.

Imagine your reaction if you stumbled upon someone in such a state.  How would you have responded?  Would you have been like the Samaritan, or would you have been like the priest and the Levite who both passed by on the other side of the street?

They didn’t help.  They hid their eyes.

When we don’t look, we don’t see.  But that doesn’t mean the problem disappears.Continue reading

From Leprous Wounds to Love

From Leprous Wounds to Love

When the cloud lifted from above the tent, Miriam’s skin was leprous—it became as white as snow. Aaron turned toward her and saw that she had a defiling skin disease, and he said to Moses, “Please, my lord, I ask you not to hold against us the sin we have so foolishly committed.—Numbers 12:10-11 NIV

Have you ever committed a foolish sin? The kind you can’t hide from that leaves you “naked and vulnerable”? I have. Exposed by my sin, I can relate to what Miriam might have felt: humiliated and humbled. Continue reading

When All You Want to Do Is Take a Nap

When All You Want to Do Is Take a Nap

When Elijah saw how things were, he ran for dear life to Beersheba, far in the south of Judah. He left his young servant there and then went on into the desert another day’s journey.  He came to a lone broom bush and collapsed in its shade, wanting in the worst way to be done with it all—to just die: “Enough of this, GOD! Take my life—I’m ready to join my ancestors in the grave!” Exhausted, he fell asleep under the lone broom bush. Suddenly an angel shook him awake and said, “Get up and eat!”—1 Kings 19:3-5 MSG

Poor Elijah.

As I read Elijah’s account, I couldn’t help but chuckle. Picture him as he sat in a puddle of pity. Elijah, fed up with following God, plopped himself under the broom bush. He wanted to throw in the towel. Instead, he threw a major temper tantrum.Continue reading