Category  |  discouragement

God's unobstructed view

Every Sunday I drive an overloaded car full of former street kids to church. While I try to navigate the crazy Kampala roads, the boys are constantly demanding my attention.

“Look over there, Auntie Rox!” one shouts, “That’s where we used to find scrap to sell.” “See those men?” adds another. “They beat me and stole my shoes!” “I used…

less than 1 percent

The movie Rudy tells the true tale of Daniel “Rudy” Ruettiger, a smallish, walk-on (nonscholarship) player who tried to make the powerhouse University of Notre Dame’s football team. He didn’t have the size. He didn’t have the athleticism. But he had the heart to make the team and even went on to play in a game!

Gideon was also a…

an indifferent spouse

In the film The Painted Veil, an unhappily married couple—Walter and Kitty Fane—trek into China’s rural Guangxi Province where cholera is decimating the locals. Their visit is hardly altruistic. Walter has caught Kitty in an affair and this trip is her punishment.

While Walter, a bacteriologist, fights the disease, Kitty offers her services to the Catholic-run hospital. One day the nun…

lost

Soon after Charles Lindbergh completed his monumental transatlantic flight in the Spirit of St. Louis, the US Ambassador to Mexico asked Lindbergh to make another flight in order to foster positive US-Mexico relations.

Taking off from Washington DC on December 13, 1927, Lindbergh began the 24-hour flight to Mexico City. After navigating through dense fog, Lindbergh lost his bearings. With only…

heard

Eight years ago, I came to a point of crisis in my prayer life. We had lost two teenagers who were very involved in our youth ministry, watched our pastor face serious health issues, and traveled a difficult road in our marriage because of all the ministry stress we were facing. Joining my husband in praying with a family during…

disappointed

Few joys surpass that of a soldier and a family reunited after an extended deployment. And few things exceed the disappointment of such a hope deferred. Imagine the scathing disappointment of a battalion that received orders to another spot in the war zone for an additional 3 months—less than 48 hours before they were to return home!

The story of…

perfect path

My wife and I had prayed. We had sought God. We had sought godly counsel. Now we presented our plans to a group of people who would help us realize a vision for ministry or shut it down. They chose the latter.

We’ve all felt the pain of having plans dashed and dreams deferred. The confusion and disillusionment that follows…

interruptions

With a work deadline looming, it was hard to find time to write my Our Daily Journey articles this month. I was strongly tempted to put on a “Do-Not-Disturb-Me” demeanor at work. For even though I tried to protect some time to think and write, it never happened. I was bombarded by e-mails that required immediate attention, or the immediate need…

unfulfilled dreams

Paul needed help. He said that his “ambition has always been to preach the Good News where the name of Christ has never been heard, rather than where a church has already been started by someone else” (Romans 15:20). This pioneering spirit lifted Paul’s eyes to the western edge of the Roman Empire. He had to go to Spain.

Since…

perspective

I recently visited “The First Baptist Church in America.” Founded by Roger Williams in 1638 in Providence, Rhode Island, the present church building was constructed in 1775. Its colonial structure is impressive, with its towering steeple, high pulpit, and boxed pews. Each pew is surrounded by a low wall and gate, and was possessed by families who sat together during…

something to last

For years, Greg Mann worked hard to share the good news of Jesus with people in the remote rainforest region of Guyana. He had overseen the building of several churches in areas accessible only by canoe. But Greg began to sense that his churches were stagnant.

Then he started encountering health problems that seriously curtailed his ability to work. So…

sky-high

The scrolling message on the TV screen warned us to take cover immediately, and the shadowy sky confirmed we were in for one whopper of a storm. The power flickered on and off. I grabbed a flashlight and carted my 9-month-old son down into the basement.

When I anxiously called my husband at work, he picked up but quickly asked…

yielded and still

Adelaide Pollard, born in 1862 in the US, had faithfully served God for many years through her gifts of teaching and writing. Her longtime desire, however, was to be a missionary in Africa. Finally the details were worked out and she was ready to set sail. But then, unexpectedly, she was forced to cancel her plans. Not being able to…

deep waters, dark nights

In the film The Perfect Storm, a captain and crew head out for what they hope will be an uneventful fishing expedition. In their quest for a bountiful catch, they motor far past their normal fishing location. There they find great success, but as they turn for home they encounter the horrifying combination of two powerful weather fronts and a hurricane.…

the Lord is king

The systems of our world are appearing more and more vulnerable. Mortgage and bank crises have undercut consumer confidence. Terrorist attacks around the world have sparked new fears. Corrupt politicians and religious leaders have continued to breed cynicism. And the struggling economy around the globe has caused many to become fearful and stressed. These feelings of vulnerability and doubt have…