Tuesday, December 31, 2019

the blue book is now available on amazon


Exciting News!  The Blue Book is now available on Amazon!  And not only that, but it also has a bunch of new content!  I've been working for the past year or so to write an opening reflection for each chapter and I'm really excited about the end result.  I hope you will be too.  So please spread the word.  Tell your friends that the strange blue devotional book that has always been so hard to find, is hard to find no more.

*Update: Thanks for the great response!  Glad to see the book still seems to be helpful to so many in making space to hear God's voice and know of his great affection.  Since the book has been released on Amazon I do, however, find that I miss the contact with many of you.  I miss hearing the stories of how God has used the book in your life or ministry.  So, if you have the time, I would love it if you would just leave your comments here, or drop by Amazon and give a review.  And, as always, feel free to email me with your Blue Book story if you'd like.  I love hearing them. Blessings, Jim



Saturday, December 7, 2019

Get Ready for Advent

Watch and Wait: A Guide for Advent and Christmas

Just wanted to remind you that if you (or any of your friends, family, or coworkers) are looking for a companion to journey with you through the seasons of Advent and Christmas, you might want to try Watch and Wait.  It is available on Amazon.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Just Released





















Hi friends.  Thought you would want to know that my new book Teach Us to Pray has just been released on Amazon.  Tell your friends!

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

i see you


i see you

there you go again
down that old familiar road
listening to the voices
telling you you’re not enough

lost inside yourself again
unable to find your way out
of the lies that you believe
about who you really are

when will you let me show you
when will you let me tell you
when will you finally believe the truth
that there’s nothing in my heart but love
when i see you

i see you when you’re hiding
i see you when you’re fighting
i see you when you’re doubting
i see the mess inside

i see you when you’re playing a part 
i see you when you’re trying so hard
to make everyone believe 
that there’s something in you
worth loving

when will you let me show you
when will you let me tell you
when will you finally believe the truth
that there’s nothing in my heart but love
when i see you

i see you when you’re tired
i see you when you’re worn out
from trying to be everything to everyone
i see the you that i made you to be
a beautiful expression of my own heart
and i’m just wanting for the chance
to remind you of who that is

when will you let me show you
when will you let me tell you
when will you finally believe the truth
that there’s nothing in my heart but love
when i see you

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

as he went along

“As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth.” (John 9:1)

Most of us, it seems, like to imagine that following Jesus means we are called to go to exotic places and do heroic things.  And while that might be true for some, it is more likely that our call contains more humble beginnings.  In fact, it starts right where we are, with whoever is in front of us at the moment.

The truth is that you and I will go places today, and we will see people as we go.  The question is: Will we really see them?  Or will we merely pass them by in our haste to get to the next thing?  Jesus saw people.  And he saw them as he went.  It didn’t take an exotic location or an important person to get his attention.  He wasn’t, it seems, out to do heroic things.  He was more concerned with simply showing up and loving whoever was in front of him at the moment.  

We would be wise to do the same.  For all of ministry starts where we are.  We are sent first to Jerusalem, then Judea, then Samaria, and then to the ends of the earth. (Acts 1:8)  So let us pay great attention, not to our “to do” list, but to where we are going and to who will be there as we go.  Stop.  Look.  Listen.  Engage.  Ask God what he is up to and join in to that.

“As you go, see people.  Really see them.  They are dying for that.  And as you see them, look for what I am doing within and around them.  Be aware of where I am already at work and join me.  What could be more heroic than that?”

Help me, Lord Jesus to see those who are in my path as I go about my day today.  They desperately need to be seen and loved.  Help me to do just that.  Help me to enter in to what you are doing within and around me today.  Amen.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

nothing

Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing. . . ." (Philippians 2:5-7, NIV)

When I try to make myself something, I am no longer following the Jesus who "made himself nothing" and calls me to do the same.

Sunday, October 13, 2019

do you see this woman?

Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman?” (Luke 7:44)

Okay, I get it.  Seeing is always a two way street.  How we see things is always determined by our own inner dynamics at the time.  In order to be able to see things, and people, the way they really are, we must first be truly seen by the One who made us, the One who knows us, and the One who loves us.  Without first being seen, known, and loved by Him, we will always be far too consumed and concerned with the way we are seen by others.  We will always live in order to prove our worthiness, rather than living because the One who made us has pronounced us worthy.  We will always live in order to achieve an identity, rather than living because he has already bestowed an identity (as his beloved) upon us.

That was certainly the case with Simon the Pharisee.  He was so consumed with himself that he was unable to see who and what was right there in front of him.  He was so full of his own fears and insecurities that he had no room to see the beauty of what had just taken place between Jesus and this sinful woman.  He was so busy criticizing and comparing and trying to convince himself and his world that he was more worthy of love, that he was unable to see the passion and the affection and the beauty of her gesture.  Because when you are consumed with yourself, you can never see others for who and what they really are; they become threats and competitors rather than fellow travelers and pilgrims in this amazingly complex journey.

Simon could see nothing but himself, so Jesus had to take a moment to help him see the situation for what it really was.  He pointed out the beauty of the woman’s act of love, as well as the contrast of Simon’s lack thereof.  In helping Simon see the woman, Jesus had also helped Simon see himself.  For only after we have been seen do we having any hope of seeing others the way God intended for us to.

You see me, Lord Jesus.  Wherever I am, and whatever I am doing, and whatever is going on in my life, help me to always realize that you see me, you know me, and you love me. And because of that I have the freedom to see, know and love others.  Thanks be to God!  Amen.