Columns

More Than Money

December 29, 2014 / Seth Pierce

This past November I attended a Dave Ramsey conference in Nashville, Tenn., that really messed up my theology. For the uninitiated: Dave Ramsey is a bestselling author, world-renowned speaker and teacher on the subject of stewardship. I know, boring right?

Most of us would rather hear sermons on the book of Chronicles than be tortured by an annual stewardship sermon series in January — reminding us all of how our greedy materialism got the better of us during the holiday shopping spree that never should have happened. 

Charity

December 04, 2014 / Steve Vistaunet

“Now abideth faith, hope and charity. And the greatest of these is charity.” I Cor. 13:13

Charity begins at home, so the old saw goes. This year, though, it seemed to begin under a cascade of ice water. The fad du jour, the Ice Bucket Challenge, swept the country and caught up normally rational people in gleeful irrationality.

I confess it was somewhat compelling to witness dignified church, academic and hospital executives, yea even a Gleaner author or two, willingly drenched to the bone. After all, it further confirmed our stance on baptism by immersion.

A Shameful Christmas Story

December 04, 2014 / Martin Weber

Faithfulness to God can disrupt your life and defame your reputation. That’s our Christmas story today.

The celebrated virgin told the announcing angel, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38). But Mary’s legendary submission to God’s will for her life did not spare her the pain or shame of radical faithfulness.

Accidental Pagans

November 25, 2014 / Seth Pierce

The greatest Christmas card ever bestowed upon me had gilded edges, dazzling red and green accents, and the following message:

“Jesus is the reason for the season!” TRUE!

“Merry Christmas!” FALSE!!!!

The sender had actually crossed off the holiday greeting portion and wrote “FALSE” — with multiple exclamation points so I would know this was serious.

Belonging

October 28, 2014 / Steve Vistaunet

Jim and Harold stood chatting on either side of the fence between their adjoining yards. They’d been best friends forever, and this was where small talk occasionally drifted into deeper waters. Today was no exception.

“Remember recess time back in grade school?” said Jim.

“Sure,” replied Harold, “every time Sheri asks me to take out the garbage.”

“I loved it,” continued Jim. “The bell would ring, and we couldn’t get outside fast enough!”

The Vision for Adventist Health Care Ministry

October 28, 2014 / Max Torkelsen

I will bring health and healing to the city. I will heal my people and will let them enjoy abundant peace and security. Jer. 33:6

Since the early days of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, health ministry has been a part of outreach to our communities. Early medical missions work went beyond the sanitariums and included a mission boat, The Morning Star, which launched medical missionary work along the Mississippi River.

Ellen ... Beyond the Mirror

October 28, 2014 / Seth Pierce

By the time you read this article, the manuscript for my new book, Ellen White for Teens, will be resting in the capable editorial hands of Pacific Press. I hope. In the meantime, however, I am immersed in the Spirit of Prophecy. The book seeks to introduce, and in some cases re-introduce, the dear lady to people who may not be fans — either because they don’t know about her or they have been harassed by people who know too much about her.

Twice Thankful

October 28, 2014 / Martin Weber

Of all our holidays, perhaps none retains spiritual meaning amid the secularization of society like Thanksgiving. Less spoiled by commercialism and selfishness, Thanksgiving brings out the best in our faltering national spirit. Families gather for a feast, often shared with those who have no families. It’s traditional to sit around the table and express thanks for favorite blessings.

Joy Is a Core Character Quality

September 22, 2014 / Martin Weber

Is joy a questionable amusement or a quality of character that facilitates revival and reformation? Last month we recognized joy at the core of the fruit of the Spirit, along with love and peace. Now let’s witness how the joy of the Lord offers strength to transform our lives.

Remember the woman at the well, imprisoned in shame and guilt. Jesus surprised her with joy. She ran back to town, shouting, “Come see a Man who told me everything I’ve ever done — is He not the Christ?” Her joy generated revival and reformation among her formerly resistant neighbors.