Wednesday, July 1, 2020

A Break from the City: A short story

A Break from the City

            It was a beautiful evening to go for a drive. The sun was setting softly over the countryside, casting a golden glow to the trees. A warm spring sunset, the perfect time for going out.

            The man, Jonathan, drove while his wife, Rylee, blared the music. Miles away from the city, they escaped the chaos. The young couple loved the city where they were from but taking a break for a couple hours appealed to both.

            Rylee laughed as she rolled her window down, caught up in the joy of the moment. She let her hand rest on the door, the wind blowing back her black hair which almost looked brown in the lighting. Her beautiful brown skin welcomed the sunlight and she slide off her sunglasses, closing her eyes to feel the wind against her face.

            Jonathan smiled at her before returning his attention to the road. She was the more enthusiastic one, but he loved watching her excitement.

            Endless fields and trees stretched out before them, lining on either side of the black road with a simple yellow line in the middle. There wasn’t another car in sight, a vast contrast from the bustling city.

            Rylee turned down the music enough to talk, “This is why I love music.”

            “What do you mean?”

            “Music conveys a variety of emotions. It puts into words what you can’t describe.” She said in a wistful tone of voice.

            “That’s true. What’s this country music describing for you?” He asked in playful tone of voice, referring to the radio station she chose.

            “The joy and warmth of summertime that's here.” Rylee answered, sounding hopeful for the future as she looked out the window.

            “Well I’m glad you talked me into coming out here.”

            They drove a bit further, enjoying the beauty of the outdoors until Rylee asked him to pull over. He parked on the side of the road, right by an empty field.

            “What’re we doing now?” Jonathan asked with a laugh, unsure of what she was planning.

            She grinned and turned up the music before taking his hand and walking on the grass, which surprisingly wasn’t that high. They left the windows down to hear the music.

            “You sure we aren’t trespassing?” Jonathan asked. But his tone wasn’t nervous – far from it. Instead he sounded mischievous and adventurous.

            Rylee rolled her eyes with another smile. “Let’s dance.”

           Without another word, she grabbed both of his hands and before he realized it, they were dancing.

          “Isn’t life better with music?”

          Jonathan nodded before smiling at his wife. “Even better with you beside me.”


Hey guys! Today I just thought I'd share a cute short story I wrote a few weeks ago. Aren't music and road trips the best? 

Christ brings so much joy to our lives and music is a beautiful way to express that!

Psalm 87:7, "Singers and dancers alike will say, 'My whole source of joy is in you.'"

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Back to the Light: A poem

I don't know what I'm supposed to do now,

it seems like everything has tumbled down.

The darkness around feels so thick,

I don't know if I can reach through it.

I can't get through this dark on my own,

but out here I feel so alone.

It seems that I'm falling down so fast,

I don't know how I'm going to last.

But then I feel a helping hand,

You help me up, You help me land.

It's hard to push through,

but I'm ready for something new.

There's nothing yet in sight,

but You're leading me back to the light.

You lead me back to life in You.

There's nothing You can't do.

You show me there's an end in sight,

You lead me back to the light.


There are so many things in this world that draw us in. Sometimes we wander into the darkness and it feels safe there. But that's false security. Jesus can lead us back to the light, back to Himself.

Besides sin, there are other forms of darkness. Depression can seem like a thick darkness you can't pick yourself out of. Fear sucks you in. Anxiety spirals your brain into an endless cycle. There seems to be no end in sight. But Jesus is still there with you and He brings light to the darkness. I'm not saying your depression, anxiety, or fears will magically go away - everything is a process. What I am saying is that He's still with you through it.

2 Corinthians 12:8-10, "Concerning this, I pleaded with the Lord three times that it would leave me.  But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is perfected in weakness.”
Therefore, I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me.  So I take pleasure in weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and in difficulties, for the sake of Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong."

Psalm 18:28, "Lord, you light my lamp; my God illuminates my darkness."

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

A Look into James: Walk

James 4:7-8, "Therefore, submit to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded."

Two verses, yet they hold so much.

Okay, let's start with the main points of what James writes that we should do....

- Submit to God
- Resist the devil
- Draw near to God
- Cleanse your hands
- Purify your hearts

Let's start with the first one. Submit to God. Submit basically means to yield to another's authority. When we submit to God and to His authority we're recognizing Him as Who He is - He's the Creator of the universe and everything in it, He's the King of the World, He's the One and Only God.


So next is James writing to resist the devil. The devil AKA Satan. Satan tempts us, he makes sin look desirable. Sometimes it's obvious what is sin and sometimes it isn't. But when we pray to God, He can give us the strength to resist the devil and his attempts.

Matthew 26:41, "Stay awake and pray, so that you won’t enter into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak."


Draw near to God. The author of Hebrews actually talks quite a bit about drawing near to God.

Hebrews 10:22, "...let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed in pure water."

Hebrews 11:6, "Now without faith it is impossible to please God, since the one who draws near to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him."

To draw near to God we must first believe He exists. Makes sense right? I mean, you can't really draw near to someone you don't believe exists. Draw near with a true heart as well.

Look, when we draw near to God, we have to leave everything else behind. You can draw near to Him if you're still hauling around all of your idols or sins. You gotta leave it behind. I think sometimes we think we are leaving it behind, until we realize we aren't. There have been so many moments in my life where I've had to take a serious look at my life and see where my devotion was. So often its easy to get swept up in friendships, TV, school, sports, careers, that we forget to truly pursue God and put Him first. I'm not saying those are bad things, I'm just saying God needs to come first if you truly want to draw near to Him.

Do you want to walk with God? Cause if you're being held back by the interests or hobbies or anything that you put before God, you won't be able to keep in step.


I'm going to combine the next two points: Cleanse your hands and purify your hearts. It's kind of like what I just wrote, if you're coming to God you need to surrender completely. We spend so much time being caught up in the things of the world. God is pure, His love is pure, His wisdom is pure - the things of this world are not pure.

I do want to say this though: don't be afraid to talk to God and confess sin to Him or to talk to Him about your struggles. Lay all of it at the feet of Jesus.

When God looks at His children, He sees the blood of Jesus covering our sins. We've been clothed in Jesus' righteousness.

2 Corinthians 5:21, "He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."

I think that that verse right there sums up the gospel beautifully. Jesus, who never sinned, took the sin of the world upon His shoulders and died for us. He rose from the dead, conquering death. Now those of us in Him can become the righteousness of God.

That doesn't mean we have a free pass to sin. Far from it! Paul talks about this in Romans 6:1-11 (click here to read about it).


Well, I think that about sums up those two verses! It's amazing how much we can learn about God from just a verse or two. What's your favorite verse in the book of James?

Psalm 116:9, "I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living."

Psalm 119:1, "How happy are those whose way is blameless, who walk according to the Lord’s instruction!"

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

A Look into James : Wake

James 2:1, "My brothers and sisters, do not show favoritism as you hold on to the faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ."

It's no secret that favoritism, discrimination, and racism are things that run rapidly in our world today. But it was never meant to be that way.

As sad as it is, racism is something that has existed since pretty much the beginning of the world, ever since the Fall. For those of us who aren't of color, or black, we may not see it as clearly around us because we aren't the ones experiencing it. But we need to wake up and realize that it still occurs.

It's been around for a long time, but due to recent events in the US, a light has been shined on it again. It breaks my heart that there are those who hate others simply because they are a different color. We need to pray for our black brothers and sisters. And we need to pray that God will change  hearts and mindsets of those who discrimate.


God loves everyone. He created everyone. He designed the world perfectly. He made people unique and He created us with different skin tones, eye colors, and hair colors. The world would be pretty boring if we all looked the same.

We have different ethnic groups, different cultures, and speak different languages. That's great! We shouldn't overlook what makes someone who they are, and we also shouldn't discriminate against them because of it.

There's beauty in the differences we have and we all have souls and we all have hearts.

Ephesians 2:13-14, "But now in Christ, you who were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For He is our peace, who made both groups one and tore down the dividing wall of hostility..."

Hebrews 13:1, "Let brotherly love continue."

Romans 12:9-10, "Let love be without hypocrisy. Detest evil; cling to what is good. Love one another deeply as brothers and sisters. Outdo one another in showing honor."


There is so much hatred in the world, so much evil. Don't return hate with hate, violence with violence, and evil with evil. But when hate rears it face, shine love. With violence comes knocking, be gentle but firm. When evil comes, turn to God for He is good.

Romans 12:21, "Do not be conquered by evil, but conquer evil with good."

1 Peter 3:15-17, "But in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy, ready at any time to give a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you. Yet do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that when you are accused, those who disparage your good conduct in Christ will be put to shame. For it is better to suffer doing good, if that should be God's will, than for doing evil."

We can wake up. We can make a difference. We can make a stand.

1 Corinthians 16:13-14, "Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. Do everything in love."


I wasn't even going to write about this verse in James, but it felt right.

Let's stand out against racism and stand with our black brothers and sisters.
Let's spend time in prayer. Prayer is a lot more powerful than it seems.

Colossians 2:11, "In Christ there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free, but Christ is all and in all."