When Jesus Got Mad

Passover 28 A.D. This time of year, all Jewish men crowded Jerusalem, even those living outside the country. Often, whole families joined the pilgrimage, causing the city’s population of 25,000 to swell four-fold. Every room in every inn and hostel was filled to capacity. The walled capital teemed with citizens and pilgrims flooding in to commemorate a miraculous escape from slavery 1500 …

A Smirk in Cana

You know the story: the first and only mention of Jesus celebrating with friends and family at a wedding. But, with time left in the festivities, “The wine gave out” (John 2:3).  The small village of Cana consisted of a few dozen houses on a terraced hillside. Located off the footpath connecting Nazareth and Capernaum, Cana was an agricultural settlement in Galilee. …

A Summer’s Prayer

Holy Father, Summer is pending, and my schedule is about to change. My children need full-time care again. I’m excited, but I know from experience that this creates its own challenges. I’m glad You are my source to run to when I don’t know what else to do (Psalm 31:1, The Message). First, I ask that this be a summer …

The Mind Game

Head in Hands, the God-Man sagged forward, allowing the bleached stone to support His fatigued Frame. Stretched out before Him lay the haggard wilderness of the Judean hills. Although other regions of this terrain blossomed fertile and green, this barren outcropping had scant vegetation due to its scorching furnace heat and cutting desert winds. As far as His Eyes could see, …

Grow Wool

My anxiety had teeth that day. In the quiet darkness of the early morning, apprehension stealthily lurked in my dreams and poised to strike with the initial ray of the sun. Before my first cup of coffee, my heart was hemorrhaging with fear as the deceitful claws of panic gripped my soul. I knew the feeling all too well. My …

Upset and Hurt

“Jesus said, ‘Didn’t you know that I had to be dealing with the things of my Father?’ But his parents were not impressed; they were upset and hurt” (Luke 2:51, The Message). I see myself in this story, but unfortunately, I’m not the one listening for the Father’s words. I’m the one upset and hurt.  Jesus should have understood both …

God’s Petri Dish

“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). Humanity looks for Him amid the fashionable, and we are disappointed to find so much emptiness there. We seek Him among the influential and are disillusioned by noteworthy lives. We hope for Him in the educated and are discouraged when we come to the end of human wisdom.  Our search is misplaced. His …

The Amazing Domino Effect

By Zephare Ramirez Reflecting on the resurrection, I’m encouraged that it is continuous. Not simply something in the past on the cross, but also what He personally does for us now. He himself “brought us out of the pit of destruction, out of the mud; and He set our feet on a rock, making our footsteps firm (Ps 40:2).” I …