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January 2017 Blog Posts (14)

Love-Starved & Love-Resistant

I recently discovered a strange phenomenon: People who are the most starved for love usually are resistant to receiving love when it’s offered to them.

This is like California or Texas after a long-term drought. When rain finally comes, the ground is so hard that it can’t properly soak up the water. Instead of being a blessing, the rain sometimes causes a flood!

Have you ever tried to show love to someone who was extremely love-starved? If so, the person probably either…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 31, 2017 at 4:43pm — No Comments

Job's Melancholic Birthday

At my age, birthdays are something I would prefer to forget rather than celebrate. Yet the greetings of “HAPPY BIRTHDAY” continue, and I’m always grateful for the nice sentiments.

This got me thinking of the story of Job. He had a happy life at the beginning and the end, but the middle was pretty rough.

Thankfully, we don’t have to get stuck in the middle of the story.

At one point, Job was not a big fan of his birthday. A season of incredibly severe trials had begun,…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 29, 2017 at 2:02pm — No Comments

Room to Grow

When Joshua was an old man, the Lord said to him,

“You are growing old, and much land remains to be conquered.”

JOSHUA 13:1 NLT

 

You have a lot of room to grow in communion…

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Added by Johnny R. Almond on January 23, 2017 at 10:15am — No Comments

Defusing Your Emotional Land Mines

My friend Ron is a divorced man in his 50s who has ventured into the world of online dating the past few years. He’s a good man who sincerely would like to find a new wife. But although he’s met a number of good prospects, each new relationship has exploded after a month or two, often suddenly and unexpectedly.

Ron typically explains the breakup in terms of “overemotional” or “hypersensitive” women. “They all say on their online profile that they’re baggage-free and drama-free,” he…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 22, 2017 at 6:17pm — No Comments

The Fullness of Time for Jesus, and for You

I wonder if prior to reaching the age of thirty, Jesus ever wondered when His time would come. It wasn’t up to Him. It would happen in the “fullness of time” (Galatians 4:4), just like everything else happens on God’s calendar. To reach their destiny, others would fight their way up, or politic their way up, or pay their way up, but not Jesus. When John the Baptist pointed out Jesus, it was because the time was right. From obscurity to prominence, Jesus didn’t have to fight His way out,…

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Added by Dan R. Crawford on January 22, 2017 at 5:07pm — No Comments

Remembering Your True Calling

Have you ever had a “voice from the past” remind you about important aspects of who God created you to be?

That’s what happened recently when I was contacted by Matthew Donovan, a friend I hadn’t seen in the nearly 20 years since he moved away from Charlotte. We were able to spend several hours together at the Panera Bread Company, catching up on things and then praying for each other.

Part of the conversation was especially illuminating for me…

“Have you been speaking…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 20, 2017 at 2:37pm — No Comments

Rediscovering My 'True North'

When I was a kid, we didn’t have all the cool video games and technology of today. Some of my most memorable toys were marbles, magnifying glasses, and gyroscopes.

Recently when I was praying, God spoke a powerful message to me through two of my other childhood toys: a compass and a magnet.

First, I recalled the amazing attributes of a compass. When set on a level surface, the needle rather mysteriously points to “true north.” Somehow the compass detects and automatically…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 19, 2017 at 9:10am — No Comments

Battle Fatigue

 

The following is a list of the kings Joshua and the Israelite armies defeated on the west side of the Jordan, from Baal-gad in the valley of Lebanon to Mount Halak, which leads up to Seir.

JOSHUA 12:7 NLT…

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Added by Johnny R. Almond on January 17, 2017 at 1:48pm — No Comments

S-i-n spells Trouble

S-i-n spells Trouble

 

They piled a great heap of stones over Achan, which remains to this day.

That is why the place has been called the Valley of Trouble ever since.

Joshua 7:26 NLT

 

     Covetousness always results in calamity. A Babylonian robe is no match for the robe of My righteousness. Silver and gold rusts away, unlike…

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Added by Johnny R. Almond on January 9, 2017 at 2:34pm — No Comments

Lessons from My Unbalanced Tires

A few years ago I purchased a new set of tires for my car. They weren’t the highest-rated tires, but they came with a 60,000-mile warranty, which seemed like a safe bet at the time.

As I drove away, I patted myself on the back for getting such a great deal. It was good to know I wouldn’t have to deal with buying tires again for at least 60,000 miles.

Everything was fine as I drove down the road, 25 mph, 35 mph, and 50 mph. But when I took my new tires on the freeway, my…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 8, 2017 at 2:03pm — No Comments

Basics of a good group, Part 3 of 3: Outreach

This three-part series explores some basics on how to build, maintain, and grow good small groups in your church, fostering healthy biblical engagement together.

There’s nothing like a…

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Added by Stephen R. Clark on January 6, 2017 at 6:30am — No Comments

Basics of a good group, Part 2 of 3: Leading

This three-part series explores some basics on how to build, maintain, and grow good small groups in your church, fostering healthy biblical engagement together.

A small group leader training booklet lists 15 tips for leaders.…

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Added by Stephen R. Clark on January 5, 2017 at 6:30am — No Comments

Basics of a good group, Part 1 of 3: Logistics

This three-part series explores some basics on how to build, maintain, and grow good small groups in your church, fostering healthy biblical engagement together.

It’s the first night of your small group. Several people are now gathered at the front…

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Added by Stephen R. Clark on January 4, 2017 at 6:30am — No Comments

Silencing the Cicadas

A few months ago, the Holy Spirit spoke a concise but powerful word to my heart during a personal retreat: “Jim, you need to silence the cicadas!”

If you’ve never been around any cicadas, you may want to visit YouTube and check them out. Cicadas are large, ugly insects that cluster together in trees to make an almost-deafening sound, especially at night.

The Lord advises us in Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God.” But how do you do that…

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Added by Jim Buchan on January 2, 2017 at 8:12pm — No Comments

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What Matters Most to God in a Disciple (Part 11)

Posted by Skip Garmo on December 1, 2018 at 11:45am

Is Discipleship Possible in the Age of Twitter?

Posted by Jim Buchan on November 26, 2018 at 5:04pm

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