Stumbling by Charles R. Swindoll Psalm 37:23-24; Hebrews 4:12-16 Nothing damages our dignity like stumbling! I have seen people, dressed to the hilt, stumble and fall flat on their faces as they were walking to church. I have witnessed serious and gifted soloists, stepping up to the pulpit with music in hand, stumble and fall as the sheets of music sailed like maple leaves in an October breeze. I’ve watched a sure and winning touchdown by a fleet split-end—nobody within fifteen yards—foiled by a stumble. I’ve looked on as brides and grooms stumbled in unison . . . as bandsmen stumbled in formation . . . as shoppers stumbled in stores . . .
by Charles R. Swindoll September 25, 2015 Hebrews 11:16 Like silent shadows, the heroes of the faith pass beside us, pointing us toward the upward way, whispering words of courage. The memory of all those models of righteousness now gone from view puts needed steel in our spirit, prompting us to press forward, always forward. The legacy of their powerful presence and penetrating pages adds depth to our otherwise superficial existence. Because their convictions live on in words that challenge today’s shallow thinking, we do not—we dare not—remain the same. I would challenge you to do some further reading about these heroes of the faith.
by Charles R. Swindoll September 24, 2015 Romans 5 It doesn’t take a Rhodes scholar to guess the country, though the towns may sound strange: Offenbach, Darmstadt, Mannheim, Coburg, Heidelberg, Worms. . . . The land of beer steins, sauerkraut, liverwurst, and black bread; cuckoo clocks and overflowing flower boxes; wide, winding rivers and deep green woods; stone castles on hillsides and quiet, efficient trains; and the greatest music ever written. The beloved homeland of Bach, Mendelssohn, Handel, Beethoven, and Wagner. Germany is also where some of the severest yet most essential battles for the faith were fought. It was there that the chain that bound the Bible
by Charles R. Swindoll Philippians 4:13–14 I honestly believe that “forgetting” is the hardest part of “forgiving.” Forgetting is something shared with no other person. It’s a solo flight. And all the rewards are postponed until eternity . . . but how great they will be on that day! Forgetting requires the servant to think correctly which means our full focus must be on the Lord and not on humanity. By God’s grace, it can happen. Ask yourself these two questions: Is there someone or something I have refused to forget, which keeps me from being happy and productive? Am I a victim of self-pity, living out my
Stories by Charles R. Swindoll Matthew 13 Stories transport us into another world. They hold our attention. They become remarkable vehicles for the communication of truth and meaningful lessons that cannot be easily forgotten. If a picture is better than a thousand words, a story is better than a million! Some of the best stories are those spun from everyday life or from our past. Family histories are held together and handed down from generation to generation in stories. And these strong cords of memory actually become the ties that bind. Biographies drip with interesting accounts worth passing on. For example, Human Options by the
by Charles R. Swindoll Galatians 2:4–5 Few things turn our crank faster than being around big-minded, enthusiastic, broad-shouldered visionaries. They are positive, on the move, excited about exploring new vistas, inspired, and inspiring. While others are preoccupied with tiny tasks and nit-picking squabbles, these people see opportunity in every difficulty and helpful lessons in every setback. Few things turn us off quicker than being around small-minded, pessimistic, narrow-world, tedious frowners. Engrossed in the minutiae of what won’t work and remembering a half-dozen worst-case scenarios, they can throw more cold water on a creative idea than a team of firefighters snuffing out a candle. It’s not
by Charles R. Swindoll Isaiah 54:4–5 Those servants who refuse to get bogged down in and anchored to the past are those who pursue the objectives of the future. People who do this are seldom petty. They are too involved in getting a job done to be occupied with yesterday’s hurts and concerns. Very near the end of his full and productive life, Paul wrote: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith” (2 Tim. 4:7). What a grand epitaph! He seized every day by the throat. He relentlessly pursued life. I know human nature well enough
Short and Sweet by Charles R. Swindoll James 4:13–17 Average life spans are shorter than most of us realize. For instance, a face-lift lasts only six to ten years; a dollar bill lasts for only eighteen months; a painted line on the road remains only three to four months; and a tornado seldom lasts more than ten minutes. There are differences of opinion, but most agree that the human life span averages somewhere between seventy-five and eighty years. That may sound encouraging to the young and disturbing to those in their sixties, seventies, and eighties. The simple fact is, however, nobody knows for sure how
Sharing Your Testimony by Charles R. Swindoll Acts 22:1–21 A time-honored, effective method of evangelism is your personal testimony. Just telling about your spiritual pilgrimage. The skeptic may deny your doctrine or attack your church, but he cannot honestly ignore the fact that your life has been cleaned up and revolutionized. Now I’m not talking about some stale, dragged-out verbal marathon. That kind of testimony never attracted anyone! I’m speaking of an effective, powerful missile launched from your lips to the ears of the unsaved. Consider these five suggestions: 1. You want to be listened to, so be interesting. It’s a contradiction to talk about
Responsibility by Charles R. Swindoll Joel 3:14 One of George Bernard Shaw’s statements frequently flashes through my mind: “Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.” In a day when most people pass the buck with merely a shrug, those words bite and sting. It’s one thing to sing and dance to liberty’s tunes, but it’s something else entirely to bear the responsibility for paying the band. There are numerous examples of this. Leadership carries with it a few privileges and perks, but living with the responsibility of that task makes a reserved parking space and your own bathroom pale into insignificance. Conceiving