Cathy and I recently had dinner with tour guide, Ronnie Cohen. Ronnie lives in Israel and will serve as our Israeli guide for our Holy Land Tour through the Life of Jesus this fall.

I asked Ronnie to share a short message with you. In this short video, Ronnie explains:

  • How a tour to Israel will change your life.
  • Why you can feel safe traveling in the Holy Land.
  • How our tour this fall has a very unique emphasis.

Our journey will have an exclusive emphasis on the life of our Lord. Click the button to see a complete itinerary and more information about this trip of a lifetime.

Space is limited, so I hope you’ll consider joining us!

CLICK FOR MORE INFORMATION

When God Fails Your Expectations

We don’t say it out loud, but often we expect that if we believe and live correctly, we’ll have great marriages, healthy bank balances, well-balanced children, and freedom from major problems.

When God Fails Your Expectations

(Photo by Photodune)

Of course, we know better—but we still lean on the side of expecting blessing for obedience.

The truth is, we have expectations of God. And sometimes, honestly, He fails those expectations.

Here’s why.

I Have Prayed for You

When I took a survey of my blog readers in 2014, the results of that survey were very telling of who you are. For example, I learned that most subscribers signed up for one of two reasons.

I Have Prayed for You

(Photo: By Aleksi Tappura. Courtesy of Unsplash.com)

Most of you subscribed for the convenience of getting my posts automatically sent to you. Others sign up for my free e-book I give to all who subscribe.

But you also received something else when you subscribed.

I prayed for you.

Still Searching for the Garden of Eden?

Trying to find the location of the Garden of Eden has given Bible students and scholars an unending quest. The Bible describes Eden as “in the east” and in proximity to a river that became four rivers.

Searching for the Garden of Eden

(Photo: Euphrates River. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Only two of the four rivers we know the locations of today (Gen. 2:8, 10-14). The Tigris and Euphrates rivers flowed through biblical Mesopotamia (modern Iraq).

But just because the location of the garden remains indefinite, it doesn’t mean we can put it anywhere we want. The best and most honest scholars put a question mark in the atlas beside the location of the Garden of Eden.

Searching for the Garden of Eden doesn’t end with its location. Many people live their lives on a quest for the delights of Eden—for an ideal life.

Here’s why that quest is just as futile as finding its location.

Where there are peaks, there are valleys. And no one is strong in many areas. Measured against the universe of human knowledge, experience, and abilities, even the greatest genius would have to be rated a total failure. There is no such thing as a “good man.” Good for what? is the question.

Peter F. Drucker
The Effective Executive (HarperCollins e-books; Revised edition, 2009), Location 1087

The Secret to Getting What You Want Out of Life

Wouldn’t it be nice if road signs told us more than simply which way to turn? Just once I’d love to see a sign that reads: “THIS ISN’T THE ROAD TO GETTING WHAT YOU WANT OUT OF LIFE.”

The Secret to Getting What You Want Out of Life

(Photo: By Simon Waelti. Courtesy of Unsplash.com)

If we had such a sign—and we believed it true—we’d immediately stop and turn around.

The Word of God gives us that sign. It tells us the results of a certain path. But it also gives us other directions.

It tells you the secret to getting what you want out of life.

Get Wise

Get Wise: Make Great Decisions Every Day (Baker Books, 2014)

Dealing with such practical decisions as money, parenting, marriage, purity, revenge, foolishness, friendship, work, and education, Get Wise: Make Great Decisions Every Day does a fine job of applying the wisdom of God’s Word to reality. In writing this book, Bob Merritt says:

I sifted through every verse contained in the book of Proverbs, isolated the dominant themes, and applied them to the top twelve decisions every person has to make in life.

Get Wise certainly contains nuggets of wisdom for living a moral life, and the proverbs Merritt selects match well with the themes. As a read, though, the book seemed at times a bit “surfacy”—with deeper issues often getting punted to the advice of a professional counselor. The stories usually recalled Merritt’s own mistakes or wise counsel to others, and after a while I felt as if the true audience of this volume was Pastor Merrit’s congregation—like the book reflected a sermon series repurposed for print. The leaders’ note in the back—as well as the discussion questions—seem to affirm that the book’s primary audience is Pastor Bob’s church. And that’s fine.

Why the Wisdom of Solomon Isn’t Enough for You

Everybody likes to be an exception to the rule. No exceptions. This paradox seems especially true for individuals who are exceptional. Like Solomon. (And like you and me.)

Why the Wisdom of Solomon Isn't Enough for You

(Photo by Owen Walters. Courtesy of Unsplash.com)

“I have given you a wise and discerning heart,” God told Solomon, “so that there has been no one like you before you, nor shall one like you arise after you” (1 Kings 3:12). Talk about exceptional!

And yet Solomon became the exception to the wisdom of Solomon. How?

It started with two small compromises that we can avoid.

We don’t usually associate Jerusalem with snow. The good folks at SourceFlix.com have given us a beautiful and brief video of the recent snowfall in Jerusalem.

It’s a beautiful picture of God’s Word:

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
And do not return there without watering the earth . . .
So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth;
It will not return to Me empty,
Without accomplishing what I desire,
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. —Isaiah 55:10–11

Question: Have you ever thought of snow as a picture of God’s Word? You can leave a comment by clicking here.