Sizing Up the Stronghold

The Oxford Dictionary defines a stronghold as "a place that has been fortified so as to protect it against attack." In The Lord of the Rings, it looks like Helm's Deep. In my life, it looks like social anxiety. Yup. Strongholds can be personal—shadow castles we've built and defended against the King who sets His... Continue Reading →

Mountain Song

"We all go up on the mountain and turn into wilder versions of ourselves. It's why we go: to be unleashed from everything that has a hold on us." (Jilllian Lukiwski) I'm knee-deep in one of the busiest seasons I've ever known. Deadlines, responsibilities, new chances to minister love to the neglected. While the load... Continue Reading →

Life-Filled Worship

Have you ever felt bored during church worship? People are yawning, Granny's in the back sleeping, friends are texting on their cell phones. No wonder non-Christians see this as lame: it is lame, forcing ourselves to sit through it because it’s what we should do. It’s what makes God happy, right? No. He's probably drooling... Continue Reading →

The Captives Go Free

God has been teaching me a lot about liberty as I've digested Beth Moore's revamped Breaking Free study. She says, "I once believed only the spiritually lost were captives. God pried open my comfortably closed mind from the inside out . . . If anyone told me Christians could be in bondage, I'd have argued... Continue Reading →

Spirit of Heaviness

You groan: it's way too early to be awake, and it feels like someone is sitting on your chest. Or you walk into work and avoid eye contact because, all things considered, you just can't muster the emotional energy to do more than keep your head above water lately. Slumped shoulders. Shallow breaths. Constricted vision... Continue Reading →

Grace in Social Media

Most people collect things. I gather inspiring quotes and spread them around my space to wave hello as old friends do when I’m bored. Or tired. Or sad. Or just 100% done. One such companion, originally included in a play by Edward Bulwer-Lytton, is “The pen is mightier than the sword.” As a particularly uncoordinated... Continue Reading →

The Slave Queen

She waited in the great hall, standing at the precipice between yesterday and tomorrow, savoring the glorious in-between. Joy-filled voices floated just past her from the feasting room beyond, anticipation buzzing bright. The young bride mused contentedly at the crown in her hands. The graceful circlet of gold had not always borne such a royal... Continue Reading →

Finally Free

This talk about freedom has been interesting, sure, but what now? What if I’ve done business with Jesus (or rather the other way around) and have gotten a pretty good grasp on what it means to be free spiritually, emotionally, financially, intellectually, and creatively? What if I’m living out of a place of liberty in... Continue Reading →

Creative Freedom

Of all the aspects of freedom, this is the one I have personally latched onto the most as I've entered adulthood. It might be tempting for you to write off this post if you don't see yourself as particularly artistic. Please don't. There is something incredible the Lord would like to show you: you are... Continue Reading →

Intellectual Freedom

Anyone familiar with our culture understands the fact that we have a massive amount of information at our fingertips—but is that access necessarily a good thing? It’s often the case that abundance leads to apathy. In a very real sense, the inundation of data has numbed our thought processes and desire for depth. For believers... Continue Reading →

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