Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Has God been "taken out of the schools?"

"Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there. If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast."--Psalm 139.7-10 I wonder why people always say that God has been taken out of our schools? I realize that teachers do not lead their classes in the Lord's Prayer any longer. But I also happen to be the father of two young students who are passionate followers of Jesus. They have a lot of friends at school who are also passionate followers of Jesus. They have been involved with Christian organizations that meet on their school campus. They pray together. Because of their attendance at their school, they invited a friend to church, who has now accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior, and has been baptized. I also happen to be married to a school teacher who is a passionate follower of Jesus. I happen to know a lot of other school teachers, principals, and school staff who are too. So, you see, I know that God IS still in our schools because of the witness of Christians who are in school everyday. After all, the Scripture above affirms that God is everywhere. Humans may think they have the power to "take God out" of something, but they do not. God is all powerful. God is everywhere! Even in the schools!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Be still

"Be still and know that I am God."--Psalm 46.10a I don't know about you, but "being still" can be a challenge for me. There always seems to be so much to do, so much to accomplish, so much to mark off the "to do" list. This Scripture reminds me that I need time to simply "be still and know that God is God." This couldn't be more true for me than in the last couple of weeks. It seems the busier I am, the more I absolutely depend on prayer and devotional time to "be still." One thing about being still I have learned: it won’t happen automatically. If I’m going to “be still” before the Lord, it must be planned; it must be intentional. God really knew what He was doing when He gave us the Scriptures because they can really help us “be still.” My mind craves something to process and I have found that I need some words and phrases to help me focus on being still before the Lord. The Word of God (the Bible) becomes not only words for a mantra but it actually creates the space where I can enter in and be still before the Lord. When is the last time you took time to "be still" by reading some Scripture and praying? It doesn't have to last an hour to be incredibly useful for your spiritual health. Why not take 10 minutes today for it? You'll be glad you did! Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for the gift of “being still.” Help me to practice it more and more as the demands on my life and time grow. In Jesus’ strong name I pray, Amen.