Compassion is tricky. It behaves like an emotion — rising up within us without our willing it or wishing its arrival. Sometimes, the depth of our compassion toward others astounds even us. When we feel it, we’re often moved to action on behalf of someone else.
Several years ago, while visiting a church on Sunday morning, I saw a striking communion banner. It featured a creative and tasteful weaving together of wheat stalks and bunches of grapes. I appreciated the artistry that went into the design and production of the banner and was glad to have seen it.
No matter who you are, how you live, where you work, or what you believe, it’s going to be a challenge to get out of this life without being offended by someone, somewhere.
There is no way around the direction Jesus calls us to take. Love is the way of the cross and it is the pathway to hope, healing, and redemption.
As I’ve been reflecting on the meaning of the Lord’s Supper, I have enjoyed finding deeper meanings of this Passover meal that Jesus reinterprets to place himself at the center of the biblical story.
When you read Matthew’s account of the Last Supper, something is missing from this Passover meal, in which Jesus powerfully transforms it into a meal about himself. Let me explain what I mean.
Participating in Communion can seem like a thing we do on Sunday that has little impact on how we live on Monday and throughout the rest of the week. The truth is, however, that Communion helps us remember the centrality of Jesus.
While they were eating, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Matthew 26:26 A Note from Mark: I want to introduce you to my friend Tim Yee. I have known Tim for many years as an exceptional student of mine, … Read More
Today, we continue in our special devotional series for Advent and Christmas. Last week, we began to examine the transformed life of the fictional character Ebenezer Scrooge, the protagonist of Charles Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol. He who once considered Christmas to be a “humbug” came to treasure it. As Dickens writes about the transformed Scrooge, he “knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge.”
This is the fourth installment in a devotional series I’m doing called “Keeping Christmas Well.” My human inspiration comes from Ebenezer Scrooge, the main character in Charles Dickens’ beloved classic, A Christmas Carol. My divine inspiration, as always, comes from Scripture. The example of Scrooge, who learned to “keep Christmas well,” helps us to reflect upon how we might do similarly — not just during Advent and Christmas but throughout the year, and not just in our private lives but in every part of life, including our work.