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2021 (Page 6)

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is about a miserly old businessman named Ebenezer Scrooge who is confronted with the festivities of Christmas. His response to Christmas is “Bah! Humbug.” He has no time for Christmas, and he bitterly resents how the holiday gets in the way of what’s really important – running a business and acquiring wealth. He is first warned by a former business partner, Jacob Marley. Jacob is reaping the consequences of his sins, pictured as chains he forged

The Old Testament prophet Elijah went through a high point in his life in calling down fire from heaven and vanquishing Baal worship. Wicked queen Jezebel then retaliated, telling him, “I’m coming after you.” This single message took Elijah from a place of immense spiritual victory suddenly to feel as if the bottom dropped out of his world. He ran for his life and ended up in the desert (1 Kings 19:1-9). We all have had similar feelings of desolation when things

Can you imagine with me hearing God saying, “Enough is enough”? “Come and see what the LORD has done, the desolations he has brought on the earth. He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth. He breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the shields with fire” (Psalm 46:8-9). The psalmist is telling us that war and destruction are inevitable. But so is God’s final victory. It encourages us to know that one day he will exercise his power

In ancient times, a fortress could be a naturally defensible location like a rocky outcrop or a cave, a garrison fort, a fortified city, or a citadel within a city. As a young boy, I enjoyed building “forts” in the woods with fallen tree limbs and branches. I would hide in my fort in my battles and triumphs against an imagined enemy! According to the psalmist, “The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress” (Psalm 46:7). The Lord

The psalmist emphasized that as long as God lived among God’s people, the city of Jerusalem was invincible. “God is within her, she will not fall” (Psalm 46:5). Pause for a moment and let that sink in. However, God tested Israel by having them surrounded by pagan nations (Judges 2:22). Centuries later Jerusalem did fall. Since God’s people had abandoned God, God abandoned his city. When they made God their refuge, and God was living among his people, they experienced God’s help