No More Prejudice – Our Daily Bread – March 4, 2014

A 2010 survey by Newsweekcontained some startling statistics: 57 percent of hiring managers believe an unattractive (but qualified) job candidate would have a harder time getting hired; 84 percent of managers said their bosses would hesitate before hiring a qualified older candidate; 64 percent of hiring managers said they believe companies should be allowed to hire people based on appearance. All are clear examples of unacceptable … Continue reading No More Prejudice – Our Daily Bread – March 4, 2014

Our Daily Bread — Big Spring – February 28, 2014

The water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life. —John4:14 In Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is a remarkable natural wonder—a pool about 40 feet deep and 300 feet across that Native Americans called “Kitch-iti-kipi,” or “the big cold water.” Today it is known as The Big Spring. It is fed by underground springs that push … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Big Spring – February 28, 2014

Our Daily Bread — Consider The Lilies – February 27, 2014

The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. —Psalm 19:1 I enjoy nature and giving praise to its Creator, but I sometimes wrongly feel guilty for admiring it too much. Then I remember that Jesus used nature as a teaching tool. To encourage people not to worry, He used simple wildflowers as an example. “Consider the lilies,” He said, and … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Consider The Lilies – February 27, 2014

Our Daily Bread — “Lie Down” – February 25, 2014

He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul. —Psalm 23:2-3 Our golden retriever can get so overly excited that he will go into a seizure. To prevent that from happening, we try to calm him. We stroke him, speak to him in a soothing voice, and tell him to lie down. But when … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — “Lie Down” – February 25, 2014

Empty Fort Strategy

In the Chinese historical novelRomance of the Three Kingdoms, author Luo Guanzhong describes the “Empty Fort Strategy,” a use of reverse psychology to deceive the enemy. When 150,000 troops from the Wei Kingdom reached Xicheng, which had less than 2,500 soldiers, they found the city gate wide open and the famous military tactician Zhuge Liang calmly playing the zither with two children beside him. The … Continue reading Empty Fort Strategy

Our Daily Bread — Covering Sinkholes – February 20, 2014

Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. —Psalm 32:1 In late May 2010, tropical storm Agatha hit Central America, producing torrential rains and landslides. Once it finished its course, a 200-foot-deep sinkhole opened in downtown Guatemala City. This sinkhole caused the ground to collapse suddenly, sucking land, electrical poles, and a 3-story building into the depths of the earth. Though sinkholes … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Covering Sinkholes – February 20, 2014

Our Daily Bread — Why Cause Grief? – February 16, 2014

Obey those who rule over you, . . . for they watch out for your souls. —Hebrews 13:17 Pastors make an easy target for criticism. Every week they are on display, carefully explaining God’s Word, challenging us toward Christlike living. But sometimes we look to find things to criticize. It’s easy to overlook all the good things a pastor does and focus on our personal opinions. … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Why Cause Grief? – February 16, 2014

The Great Creator-Healer

A few years ago, I had a rather serious skiing accident and severely tore the muscles in one of my legs. In fact, my doctor told me that the tear caused excessive bleeding. The healing process was slow, but during that time of waiting I found myself in awe of our great Creator (see Col. 1:16). I’ve wrinkled a few car fenders in my lifetime … Continue reading The Great Creator-Healer

Character Or Reputation? – Our Daily Bread – February 13, 2014

Legendary basketball coach John Wooden (1910–2010) believed that character is far more important than reputation. “Your reputation is what you’re perceived to be by others,” Coach Wooden often told his players, “but your character is what you really are. You’re the only one that knows your character. You can fool others, but you can’t fool yourself.” In the book of Revelation, we find the words … Continue reading Character Or Reputation? – Our Daily Bread – February 13, 2014

Our Daily Bread — Who’s That Hero? – February 7, 2014

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. —Matthew 5:16 Reading the book of Judges, with its battles and mighty warriors, can sometimes feel like reading about comic book superheroes. We have Deborah, Barak, Gideon, and Samson. However, in the line of judges (or deliverers), we also find Othniel. The account of his life … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Who’s That Hero? – February 7, 2014

Our Daily Bread — Before And After – February 6, 2014

Give ear to my prayer, O God . . . . My heart is severely pained within me, and the terrors of death have fallen upon me. —Psalm 55:1,4 What changes take place in a life of faith after severe testing? I thought of this as I read the tragic story of a Jamaican dad who accidentally shot and killed his 18-year-old daughter while trying … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Before And After – February 6, 2014

Our Daily Bread — An Important Command – February 4, 2014

When asked by a lawyer to identify the most important rule in life, Jesus replied, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30). In those words, Jesus summed up what God most desires from us. I wonder how I can possibly learn to love God with all my heart, … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — An Important Command – February 4, 2014

Our Daily Bread — Better Than Planned – January 28, 2014

Giving thanks always for all things. —Ephesians 5:20 Interruptions are nothing new. Rarely does a day go by as planned. Life is filled with inconveniences. Our plans are constantly thwarted by forces beyond our control. The list is long and ever-changing: Sickness. Conflict. Traffic jams. Forgetfulness. Appliance malfunctions. Rudeness. Laziness. Impatience. Incompetence. What we cannot see, however, is the other side of inconvenience. We think it … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — Better Than Planned – January 28, 2014

Our Daily Bread — The Wonder Of The Cross – January 27, 2014

[Look] unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross. —Hebrews 12:2 While visiting Australia, I had the opportunity on a particularly clear night to see the Southern Cross. Located in the Southern Hemisphere, this constellation is one of the most distinctive. Mariners and navigators began relying on it as early as the … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — The Wonder Of The Cross – January 27, 2014

Our Daily Bread — An Ordinary Day – January 25, 2014

Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. —Matthew 24:42 While exploring a museum exhibit titled “A Day in Pompeii,” I was struck by the repeated theme that August 24, ad 79 began as an ordinary day. People were going about their daily business in homes, markets, and at the port of this prosperous Roman town of 20,000 people. At8 a.m., a series of … Continue reading Our Daily Bread — An Ordinary Day – January 25, 2014

No Loose Laces – Our Daily Bread – May 15, 2013

One person’s actions can affect an entire group. This truth became clear to journalist Sebastian Junger as he followed a platoon of soldiers. Junger watched a soldier accost another soldier whose bootlaces were trailing on the ground. He didn’t confront him out of concern for his fashion. He confronted him because his loose laces put the entire platoon at risk—he couldn’t be counted on not … Continue reading No Loose Laces – Our Daily Bread – May 15, 2013

Becoming – Our Daily Bread – May 14, 2013

I grew up in a small town. No famous people. No busy streets. Not much to do. Yet I’ve always been thankful for my quiet, uncomplicated upbringing. One evening when my husband and I were attending a business dinner, a new acquaintance asked me where I was from. When I told her, she said, “Aren’t you embarrassed to admit it?” Unsure whether or not she … Continue reading Becoming – Our Daily Bread – May 14, 2013

Tulip Day – by Dennis Fisher – Our Daily Bread – May 13, 2013

Several countries around the world celebrate Tulip Day to welcome the spring. When I think of tulips, I often think of the Netherlands, but commercial cultivation of the flower began in the Middle East. Today these colorful flowers span the globe. An estimated 109 species of tulips now grace parks, thoroughfares, and home gardens all around the world. Last fall I planted some tulip bulbs. … Continue reading Tulip Day – by Dennis Fisher – Our Daily Bread – May 13, 2013

Seasons Of Life – Our Daily Bread – May 12, 2013

When I was a pastor, I served many women who were moms. I called on them in the hospital and rejoiced with them for their precious babies who had come into the world. I counseled with anxious mothers and tried to assure them that God was watching over their rebellious teenagers. I stood with mothers at the bedside of injured or ill children and felt … Continue reading Seasons Of Life – Our Daily Bread – May 12, 2013

Yesterday, Today, And Tomorrow – David C. McCasland – Our Daily Bread – May 11, 2013

Recently I realized that all of the photos and mementos in my office represent the past. I considered removing them, but wondered if those reminders of people, places, and events might serve some purpose beyond nostalgia. To avoid being mired in the “yesterdays” of life, I needed to discover the value of those items for today and tomorrow. When God’s people crossed the Jordan River … Continue reading Yesterday, Today, And Tomorrow – David C. McCasland – Our Daily Bread – May 11, 2013

Faithful To The Finish – Our Daily Bread – April 24,2013

After running 32 kilometers (20 miles) of the Salomon Kielder Marathon in Great Britain, a runner dropped out and rode a bus to a wooded area near the finish line. Then, he re-entered the race and claimed third prize. When officials questioned him, he stated that he stopped running because he was tired. Many of us can relate to the exhaustion of a worn-out athlete … Continue reading Faithful To The Finish – Our Daily Bread – April 24,2013

Our Daily Bread – Wonderfully Made – by Bill Crowder – April 20, 2013

While getting an eye exam recently, my doctor hauled out a piece of equipment that I hadn’t seen before. I asked him what the device was, and he responded, “I’m using it to take a picture of the inside of the back of your eye.” I was impressed that someone had invented a camera that could do that. But I was even more impressed by … Continue reading Our Daily Bread – Wonderfully Made – by Bill Crowder – April 20, 2013

All The Comforts Of Home – Our Daily Bread – John 14:1-6 – April 17,2013

In My Father’s house are many mansions; . . . I go to prepare a place for you. —John 14:2 Once, during my tenure as a human resource officer for a construction company, we took some jobs in a neighboring state. This meant our workers were faced with a 2-hour commute each way, plus a full workday. To ease the burden, we booked motel rooms … Continue reading All The Comforts Of Home – Our Daily Bread – John 14:1-6 – April 17,2013

Honor System – Our Daily Bread – April 12,2013

Many homes near ours offer produce and perennials for sale by the road. Sometimes we’ll drive up to an unattended stand that operates on the “honor system.” As we make our selection, we put our money into a cash box or an old coffee can. Then we go home to enjoy the freshly picked fruits and vegetables. But the honor system doesn’t always work. My … Continue reading Honor System – Our Daily Bread – April 12,2013

Is Ambition Wrong? – Our Daily Bread

Whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord. —Colossians 3:23 Is ambition wrong? Is it wrong to be driven, to push to be the best? It can be. The difference between right and wrong ambition is in our goal and motivation—whether it’s for God’s glory or our own. In 1 Thessalonians 4:1, Paul tells us that Christians are to live lives “to please God.” … Continue reading Is Ambition Wrong? – Our Daily Bread