Not Taking Advantage

By |2020-07-07T09:28:36-04:00July 10th, 2020|

Several inmates were collecting roadside garbage to reduce their jail time when their supervisor, James, collapsed. They rushed to his aid and realized he was having a medical emergency. One inmate borrowed James’ phone to call for help. The sheriff’s department later thanked the inmates for helping get their supervisor prompt medical attention, especially because they could have instead neglected him..

Just a Spark

By |2020-07-02T12:03:09-04:00July 3rd, 2020|

“We’re in the library, and we can see the flames right outside!” She was scared. We could hear it in her voice. We know her voice—the voice of our daughter. At the same time we knew her college campus was the safest place for her and her almost 3,000 fellow students. The 2018 Woolsey Fire spread more quickly than anyone anticipated—most of all fire personnel...

Does What We Do Matter?

By |2020-02-04T12:20:09-05:00February 7th, 2020|

I dropped my forehead to my hand with a sigh, “I don’t know how I’m going to get it all done.” My friend’s voice crackled through the phone: “You have to give yourself some credit. You’re doing a lot.” He then listed the things I was trying to do—maintain a healthy lifestyle, work, do well in graduate school, write, and attend a Bible study...

Life to the Full

By |2020-01-29T16:19:04-05:00January 29th, 2020|

The year was 1918, near the end of World War I, and photographer Eric Enstrom was putting together a portfolio of his work. He wanted to include one that communicated a sense of fullness in a time that felt quite empty to so many people. In his now much-loved photo, a bearded old man sits at a table with his head bowed and his hands clasped in prayer...

An Old Clay Pot

By |2020-01-24T13:26:03-05:00January 28th, 2020|

I’ve acquired a number of old clay pots over the years. My favorite was excavated from a site dated during Abraham’s time. It’s at least one item in our home that is older than I! It’s not much to look at: stained, cracked, chipped, and in need of a good scrubbing. I keep it to remind me that I’m just a man made out of mud. Though fragile and weak, I carry an immeasurably precious treasure—Jesus...

Led by His Word

By |2019-12-20T12:16:02-05:00December 27th, 2019|

At the BBC in London, Paul Arnold’s first broadcasting job was making “walking sounds” in radio dramas. While actors read from scripts during a walking scene, Paul as stage manager made corresponding sounds with his feet—careful to match his pace to the actor’s voice and spoken lines. The key challenge, he explained, was yielding to the actor in the story, “so the two of us were working together...”

Written on the Heart

By |2019-12-17T12:18:31-05:00December 19th, 2019|

As a professor, I’m often asked by students to write letters of recommendation for them—for leadership positions, study-abroad programs, graduate schools, and even jobs. In each letter, I have a chance to praise the student’s character and qualifications. When Christians traveled in the ancient world, they often carried with them similar “letters of commendation” from their churches...

The Lost Envelope

By |2019-11-29T12:00:06-05:00December 3rd, 2019|

We were on the way home from a visit with family in another state when I found it. I was pumping gas when I noticed a dirty, bulky envelope on the ground. I grabbed it, dirt and all, and looked inside. To my surprise, it contained one hundred dollars. One hundred dollars that someone had lost and who at that very moment was possibly frantically searching to find...

Hazardous Materials

By |2019-11-28T16:03:22-05:00November 29th, 2019|

The sound of a siren increased to an ear-piercing level as an emergency vehicle sped by my car. Its flashing lights glared through my windshield, illuminating the words “hazardous materials” printed on the side of the truck. Later, I learned it had been racing to a science laboratory where a 400-gallon container of sulfuric acid had begun to leak...