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From pain to peace

By Dave Henning / March 14, 2012

When you recall the principal individuals involved in your downsizing or ministry loss, how do you feel?  For several years after my teaching ministry ended, my operative feeling was ‘anger’.  I began to heal when I looked at those individuals  through Jesus’ eyes rather than my own. Ann Spangler titled Chapter 4 of The Peace […]

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Slavery or deliverance?

By Dave Henning / March 12, 2012

Yesterday I commented on the idea of being able to shape our memories.  No matter how we might describe the depth of our pain, ranging from minimal to unbearable, we can choose  to view those memories not from the perspective of what was done to us but rather what God has done for us.  Ann Spangler ( The Peace […]

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Re-membering rightly

By Dave Henning / March 12, 2012

In The Peace God Promises, Ann Spangler quotes Miroslav Volf, a professor of systematic theology at Yale Divinity School: “We are not just shaped by memories: we ourselves shape the memories that shape us.”  Put another way, while the factual memories of our downsizing or ministry loss are a given, our interpretation or response to […]

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Practical atheism

By Dave Henning / March 10, 2012

When adversity comes,  we can’t afford to indulge ourselves in negative thinking patterns.  As Ann Spangler warns in The Peace God Promises: “. . . if we develop a pattern of negative thinking, we risk becoming ‘practical atheists’, people who call themselves Christians even though they think and act like atheists.”  When you feel your […]

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Indestructible faith

By Dave Henning / March 9, 2012

In his book Know Doubt, author John Ortberg quotes the complaint of Yemelian Yaroslavsky, who was chairman of Stalin’s League of the  Militant Godless: “Christianity is like a nail.  The harder you strike it, the deeper it goes.”  During your time of adversity, do you find that it strengthens your faith, or do you identify […]

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Stealth aircraft

By Dave Henning / March 8, 2012

In The Peace God Promises, Ann Spangler notes that to truly experience the peace of God in our lives, it’s essential to honestly examine the many stories and experiences that define who we are as well as our responses to the people and events around us.  She continues by explaining why: “Because these narratives are […]

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“If only . . .”

By Dave Henning / March 7, 2012

In what ways would you complete this sentence: “I could have the peace I long for if only. . .”?  In her book The Peace God Promises, author Ann Spangler reflects on that concept: ” Each of us can come up with our list of ‘if onlys’- of the things or the people who make […]

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Suffering brings change

By Dave Henning / March 5, 2012

In his book The Calling; Live a Life of Significance, Dr. Kurt Senske has this thought on responding to life’s challenges:  “When we suffer the loss of someone or something we love, we also lose a part of ourselves.  It is a time of great vulnerability.  We might rage against God, blame others, feel entitled, […]

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Abundant life in Jesus

By Dave Henning / March 4, 2012

In his book Know Doubt, John Ortberg states that the evidence of lives changed by Jesus is so abundant that it can’t be matched by any other religion, culture, or world view.  To prove his point, he offers this telling comment that he’s never heard anyone actually say: “One day I realized there was no […]

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The faith footbridge

By Dave Henning / March 3, 2012

Nicholas Wolterstorff (cited by John Ortberg in Know Doubt), American philosopher and Professor of Philosophical Theology at Yale University, defined faith with this simile: “Faith is a footbridge that you don’t know will hold you up over the chasm until you’re forced to walk out onto it.”  Sooner or later, all the Christian education you’ve […]

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Faith training

By Dave Henning / March 2, 2012

In The Joyful Christian, C.S. Lewis (cited by Brian Jones in Second Guessing God) had this to say about the necessity of faith: “. . .Faith is such a necessary virtue: unless you teach your moods ‘where they get off’, you can never be either a sound Christian or even a sound atheist, but just […]

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Forging character

By Dave Henning / February 29, 2012

In his wonderful book The Land Between, Jeff Manion talks about persevering during our time of transformational growth: “The knowledge and depth of character Joseph gained on his detour is rarely the outcome of reading an inspirational book.  That kind of character has to be forged.”  Only a time of significant trial produces produces maturity and completeness: […]

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