Challenges

The Violin and the Broken String

April 2020 | Published in Overcoming

There is a story, versions of which can be found on several websites, about the world-famous violinist Itzhak Perlman. It illustrates a beautiful principle about God’s grace and power, how He can take whatever we have to offer Him in this life and make it into something beautiful. I’d like to recount it for you.

Through the Storm

April 2020 | Published in Getting Through

Remember the account when I calmed the sea?1 My disciples were panicking and thought that they would certainly perish. But when they looked to Me for help, rather than looking at their circumstances, I came to their rescue, in spite of the waves and the storm.

The Presence

April 2020 | Published in Guidance

Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton (1874–1922) was an Irish explorer who is best remembered for his Antarctic expedition of 1914–1915 in the ship Endurance, described in his book South. Less known is that Shackleton had an unseen source of strength to draw from—his faith.

Jesus and My Bag

March 2020 | Published in Stress

Over the years, my backpack has taken a lot of abuse. I’ve taken it out in the blazing sun and in the pouring rain, around my neighborhood and on overseas trips. It’s gone with me to humanitarian projects and on holidays. In fact, almost everywhere I’ve gone, so has my bag.

The Rain Also Brings Blessings

February 2020 | Published in Personal Experiences

I was sitting in a wheelchair in the lobby of the hospital, waiting for the taxi to come. My shoulder was still swollen from the operation, and my entire arm was mottled with black and blue marks.

To top it off, it was raining, adding to my dark mood. Great! Rain! I thought. Just what I need!

When Jesus Showed Up

February 2020 | Published in Jesus Christ

It never ceases to amaze me how Jesus shows up in the dark and difficult places of our lives. One such example is told in Luke 8.

Jesus, already being thronged by crowds of people eager to hear His words, is begged by Jairus, a cleric and a man of some importance, to come to his home and heal his dying daughter.

Thoughts on the Realities of Life

August 2019 | Published in Getting Through

As believers, we can sometimes have unrealistic expectations about our lives. When things aren’t going smoothly, there’s a tendency to beat ourselves up about it, or feel that God isn’t answering our prayers because He doesn’t care enough or because we’re doing something wrong.

The Heart of a Hero

August 2019 | Published in Personal Growth

I remember memorizing Hebrews 11 as a child, which detailed quite a few gruesome ways to die: “They were stoned to death, they were cut in two, and they died by being murdered with swords. They went around wearing the skins of sheep and goats, needy, oppressed, and mistreated. The world didn’t deserve them. They wandered around in deserts, mountains, caves, and holes in the ground.”1

Knights and Mirrors

August 2019 | Published in Perspective

One of the movies I watched the most often when growing up was Man of La Mancha.1 It seemed that every couple of months, some parent, youth group leader, or teacher decided it was time for a rerun. I’m not a huge fan of musicals, but I do have a soft spot for this film.

Live with Joy

July 2019 | Published in Overcoming

As I was skimming headlines on an online news website, I saw this headline: “He’s a Fighter: Guo Youming Won’t Succumb to Rare Disease.” Intrigued, I clicked on the article and started reading Guo Youming’s incredible story.

As a child, his mother noticed that he walked unsteadily and had frequent falls. His condition worsened until he was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at age seven.

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