Volume 16.10 | October 2015

  • The challenge of change

    For many people, coming to know and accept Christ is a life-changing event. For example, immediately after he met and talked with Jesus, Zacchaeus’ entire life was turned around.1 In a matter of days, Saul went from “threatening with every breath and eager to destroy every Christian”2 to preaching the gospel as the apostle Paul. […]

  • The bookmark

    I’m sitting here staring at the side of my computer screen, where I’ve stuck one of the cutest little bookmarks I’ve ever owned. It has a picture of a mother hugging a little child, and a quote from Charles Dickens at the bottom: “It is not a slight thing when they, who are so fresh […]

  • Jewels of the deep

    Always on the lookout for something pretty, I noticed a small nugget of smooth glass as I walked along the beach. When it’s smooth and polished, an ordinary piece of glass seems precious, like something to be showcased in a beautiful wind chime, necklace charm, or the like. The ocean does the same thing to […]

  • Tears and mends

    When I was a child, my mother used to keep a pile of clothes to mend, mostly belonging to us kids, by the sewing machine, and she would patiently work on them every Saturday morning. I have many happy memories of sitting beside her and learning simple sewing and making doll dresses. But the most […]

  • Out of my comfort zone

    Recently, I had the uneasy feeling that I needed a change, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was. I had a nagging feeling, but I didn’t make much effort to do something about it. Then my daughter Joanna invited me to a special exercise program that covers a variety of routines […]

  • Formula of five: spiritual growth

    He set himself to seek God … and as long as he sought the Lord, God made him prosper.1 If you want to be physically fit, you have to eat right, exercise, and put some time and effort into building good physical habits. Similarly, if you want spiritual growth—if you want to be spiritually fit—it […]

  • Farewell to an old friend

    My elderly mother was on the phone. “The next time you visit, would you mind looking in the garage? Your brother is helping clean it out, and he came across some of your old things.” What childhood leftovers could possibly remain? When I arrived, there it was: a ponderous manual office typewriter, as sturdy as […]

  • Turning dreams into reality

    To one degree or another, just about all of us are unsatisfied with ourselves and our circumstances—and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. A certain amount of dissatisfaction is necessary if we’re ever going to make progress. To become all that we can be, we must dream of being more than we are. The problem […]

  • One man’s trash

    When we lack faith, we miss miracles that are trying to be delivered to us. Life is a lot about having the faith to see possibilities that others might overlook. Take apple seeds, for example.  Most people throw away the core and seeds as worthless, but someone with faith as small as that seed might […]

  • Upcycled!

    It never ceases to amaze me how Lidija, a dear friend of mine, can turn garbage into works of art. As a volunteer, she runs a day center called Koraci (Steps) and organizes art workshops for children, the elderly, the disabled, young people, housewives, etc. Besides the more conventional techniques, such as ceramics, pressed flowers, […]

  • In need of a makeover?

    There are countless people whose lives have been changed by an encounter with Jesus, both within and beyond the context of Bible history. Paul is often rightly cited as an example of the power of Jesus to transform lives. He was a Pharisee (a member of an ancient Jewish religious group) who was so dead […]

  • Learning equals progress

    Take a look at the natural world. Look at the plants as they sprout new leaves and the flowers as they blossom. Look at the little birds as they learn how to take flight for the first time. Look at the little kittens and puppies and how enthusiastic they are about each opportunity to explore […]