Divine Expectation Management

BFB220702 Death of Korah Dathan & Abiram
Korah, Dathan and Abiram and their families are swallowed up by the earth, Gilliam van der Gouwen, after Gerard Hoet, 1728, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.

Life is an endless series of negotiations. Children and parents negotiate their relationships and boundaries, business partners negotiate contracts, social organizations negotiate bylaws, and nations negotiate treaties. It’s really a matter of reaching agreement about what each party contributes and what each will receive. We know by experience the problems that arise when one or both parties fail to live up to their obligations, but what happens if one of those parties is our Creator?

Numbers 16:1-18:32; 1 Samuel 11:14-12:22; Jeremiah 7:21-25; John 6:67-69; Hebrews 11:23-29

Click here to listen to the podcast: Divine Expectation Management

Click here to download the transcript: Divine Expectation Management.pdf

Music: “Trust & Believe,” Exodus Road Band, Hard Rain, Exodus Road Band 2018. This song and others by Exodus Road Band are available at https://www.exodusroadband.com/

How God Sorts Out His Own

BFB220625 Rescuer Port-au-Prince
Rescuer holds a hand of a student survivor of the collapse of La Promesse College, Port-au-Prince, Haiti. UN Photo/Marco Dormino, November 7, 2008, via Flickr.

It’s easy – too easy – to write people off as lost causes when it seems that God is judging them. If it is judgment, then it may be such people are simply suffering the natural consequences of poor choices. But what if the people suffering the most are not the ones who made those choices? And what if those natural consequences doom them to make those same choices and perpetuate the cycle? Do we let them perish, or do we break into their suffering somehow, at least to ease their pain, even if they never find the path to redemption?

Numbers 13:1-15:41; Joshua 2:1-24, 6:22-25; Deuteronomy 7:1-6; Matthew 1:1-6; 2 Timothy 1:3-7 

Click here to listen to the podcast: How God Sorts Out His Own

Click here to download the transcript: How God Sorts Out His Own.pdf

Music: “Forgiveness,” Mason Clover, Perception, Abiron Records 2019. Mason Clover’s music is available at https://www.masonclover.com/

Quail Jerky and the Illusion of Abundance

BFB220618 Desert Quail
Desert Quail (Gambel’s Quail), illustration from The Birds of California, William Leon Dawson, (Los Angeles: South Moulton Company, 1923). Biodiversity Heritage Library, via Flickr..

How much do we trust God? We say we trust in Him, but how much trust do we really have when adversity comes? Maybe a better question would be, do we trust Him more than we trust in ourselves to provide the things we want when we want them? That leads to a more uncomfortable question: if God doesn’t provide in the way we expect, is He still the God we want to follow?

Numbers 8:1-12:16; Zechariah 2:10-4:7; Daniel 3:12-18; Philippians 4:12-13 

Click here to listen to the podcast: Quail Jerky and the Illusion of Abundance

Click here to download the transcript: Quail Jerky and the Illusion of Abundance.pdf

Music: “I Know Whom I Have Believed,” Hymn Collective, Gospel Light, Infinity Records 2010.

Coping with Unfair

BFB220611 Sad Child
Sad little boy. Photo: David Shankbone, May 2009, via Flickr.

It is inevitable that we encounter undeserved adversity. That’s been part of human existence for as long as anyone can remember. We can’t eradicate unfairness, which means we have a choice: we can complain and make ourselves more miserable, or we can bear it as best we can while finding a way to grow through it.

Numbers 4:21-7:89; Judges 13:2-25; Genesis 6:5, 9:8-16; Matthew 1:18-25; 26:36-39; 1 Corinthians 2:14-16; Ephesians 5:21-33

Click here to listen to the podcast: Coping with Unfair

Click here to download the transcript: Coping with Unfair.pdf

Music: “Crisis of Belief,” Mason Clover, An Intimate Look, Abiron 2008. Visit https://www.masonclover.com/ to hear more by Mason Clover.

A House for the Lonely

BFB220604 Adoption
Master Sgt. Ernie Valley cradles his new adopted daughter, Oleksandra, after greeting her at the Boise Airport, Boise, Idaho, January 23, 2014. U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Samuel Morse, via Flickr.

A family should exhibit some degree of cohesion. Family members should look out for one another, encourage each other, and love one another through the endless trials of this life. But if we have trouble doing that in our own flesh-and-blood families, how can we hope to do better as the family of God?

Numbers 1:1-4:20; Hosea 1:10-2:21; Jeremiah 31:31-34; Psalm 68:5-6; Matthew 23:13; Romans 9:24-26

Click here to listen to the podcast: A House for the Lonely

Click here to download the transcript: A House for the Lonely.pdf

Music: “Home,” Teshuva, Return, Teshuva 2014. Visit https://www.teshuvamusic.com/ to hear more by Teshuva.

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