When I was a kid, I used to firmly say I’d be willing to bear persecution— and even die for Jesus. These verses, spoken by Jesus, touch me personally and give me courage to be a witness for Him—no matter the consequence.
“Nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You” (2 Chron. 20:12, NKJV).
Once I “found” this verse, it became a favorite of mine. One Bible that I own is full of verses colored in blue to remind me of God’s special promises. This is one of those special verses that has not only helped me handle those tough moments in life, but I believe it has also strengthened those with whom I’ve shared this verse.
Why do we think we can go through life without leaning on the Lord for His guidance and deliverance? My husband, Dan, and I have faced some pretty tough situations in life—dead-end battles—or so they’ve seemed. But I’ve discovered that, as our walk with God continues, we need to keep our eyes on Him and go along for the ride. It’s not always easy though.
“For I know the plans I have for you ... plans to prosper you and not to harm you ... to give you hope and a future” (Jer. 29:11, NIV).
The biochemistry textbook was thick and assignments ominous. My primary question was not Will I survive this class? but Is this even necessary?
Though I had weathered challenges before, the horror stories about my university’s Biochemistry course alarmed me. A graduating senior, I was already swamped by other academic and extracurricular commitments.
Embarking on a detailed, fast-paced journey, I increasingly appreciated how biology and chemistry intertwined. I had a C, however, which terrified me. God, what is happening? I began to ask.
“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in Thy presence is fullness of joy; at Thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore” (Ps. 16:11, KJV).
My mother’s passing at the age of 91 was “lost” in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, but I remember her and her great personal sacrifice when our father returned from the Vietnam War in 1968, only to abandon the family 10 days later.
The text says that God will “shew me the path of life,” but for a 15-year-old whose life had just imploded, I could not see my way forward. Thank God for a mother with a deep faith and a desire to follow truth wherever it led.
We're going to dig deeper into this conversation Friday evening at 7:30 p.m. on VNL. Are there any questions YOU have for these pastors? Anything you've noticed along this topic? Join us here or on facebook.com/columbiaunionvisitor.
Join our conversation with Pastor Heather Crews, Pastor Cesar Gonzales, Volunteer Lay Pastor Lance Moncrieffe, Columbia Union Executive Secretary Rick Remmers and Pastoral Assistant Naomi Tricomi.
“The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to tread on the heights” (Hab. 3:19, NIV).
There have been times when my trust in God was in a frequent seesaw. My trust soared high when my circumstances were the way I desired and dipped low when God did not come through for me as I asked Him to. I even questioned whether His promises were real.
In February 2020, my husband, Kevin, and I committed to a new adventure. We moved from Dayton, Ohio, to Washington, D.C., as I started my new job as the CEO of Howard University Hospital. This new position, arguably the greatest challenge of my career, required peace and courage to perform the task. And then entered COVID-19.
At any time or any place, someone is praying. These are known as “expected prayers”—at church, before meals or during pastors’ visits. Such was the case when I visited a member the night before open-heart surgery.
We spoke and prayed over his concerns and the comforting hope found in his medical team and his faith.
“You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You” (Isa. 26:3, NKJV).
My favorite and most comforting verse in the Bible is Isaiah 26:3. This text brought me peace of mind after I completed writing “love letters” to my husband and children, encouraging them and expounding on how much I loved them and sharing my hopes for their future.