For those of you with children or grandchildren, or for those of you who lead or teach children and youth in some other way, I’m about to share something that might be a bit jarring. But there are times when some soul-rattling is in order. Let me share it with you, and then explain my … Continue reading (Really) prioritizing the faith of children as we re-vision our lives
Hello! The Up Devotional is glad to be back after two weeks of vacation. My family spent some time at the ocean. And yes, it was warm enough to swim. We even saw dolphins! One day my daughters and I were jumping in the waves. They would crash into us. We tried to keep our … Continue reading Un-drifting from shore
Today is Ash Wednesday. Some Christians are in the habit of putting ashes on their foreheads because they symbolize our mourning and regret for sin. But ashes also symbolize our mortality. This recalls Genesis 3:19 where Adam was punished for his disobedience to God and made to work the soil from which he came: “for … Continue reading The skull of motivation (Ash Wednesday)
A story is told from the Vietnam War. A platoon was hunkered down in some rice paddies in the heat of a firefight. Suddenly, as if out of nowhere, a group of six monks started walking through the middle of the field between the two sides. David Busch recounts the scene: “They didn’t look right, … Continue reading The monks were clearly playing by different rules
If you’re reading or listening to this, you’re probably someone who values priorities. Otherwise, you wouldn’t be subscribed to a devotional which is dedicated to keeping our focus on God. The greatest command is an articulation of priorities: “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?... The Lord our God, the Lord is one. … Continue reading Discuss your priorities
I remember a story about man and his horse. The horse’s job was to take people here or there in wagons, and even to pull logs through the forest after it had been cleared. But the horse’s owner was increasingly frustrated because it kept bumping into things. As a result, it was bordering on dangerous. … Continue reading Truth because he cares
“We all stumble in many ways” (James 3:2). Many of you are reading this on a Monday. Mondays can be a downer. They’re certainly not the weekend. Many of you are headed back to work, school or other things that remind you that life has unavoidable responsibilities. But Mondays are also a kind of re-set … Continue reading A reset if you’re barely holding on
Have you heard of F.O.M.O.? It has started to appear in dictionaries. It’s an acronym: “fear of missing out.” Apparently there is an entire group of people who are afraid to miss out on the latest trend, post, gossip, news story or event. As a result, they never disconnect. They have to stay online, track … Continue reading Have you heard of FOMO?
Hebrews 12:1-2: “And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus…” Let’s say that you’re dead. And let’s say that you’re having a conversation with Jesus. What kind of question do you think he would ask to evaluate your success at navigating this trying chapter of life? … Continue reading What question would Jesus ask you?
A few years ago I was watching my son play a hockey game. There was a father of a boy on the other team bellowing instructions at his son on the ice—instructions which, I should add, weren’t very smart. As a result, the boy was confused. Should he listen to his coach, or should he … Continue reading Don’t be a swivel head