The Christmas Tree Tradition

Ever since we came to Delhi, we have made setting up our family Christmas tree an exciting event for our kids. It’s something they start looking forward to from the beginning of November.

Now setting up the tree in itself can be quite a laborious and arduous task, (especially since we’ve had one of our children in the toddler stage every single time we’ve set it up!) but if you make a party out of it, then even the difficult task of untangling Christmas lights can be fun.

And so began our tradition of setting up the Christmas tree. Every year on November 25th, we set up our tree. We invite friends who don’t have family members close by, or just about anyone who likes to decorate a tree. With loud Christmas music playing in the background and excited kids running around, we set up our tree. My husband, being a perfectionist, will take down the lights and put them back on at least a dozen times before he smiles in satisfaction.

When everything is done and the last ornament is finally hung up, we all sit around the tree. We pass out chocolate chip cookies and steaming mugs of hot cocoa. Then we all settle down and my husband reads Luke 2:1-20 for us. He then explains to our kids why we actually celebrate Christmas. He talks to them about a helpless little baby born in a manger. About a teenager who obeyed the will of God and carried the child to term. About the shepherds who heard the good news and ran to see Jesus. About the angels who proclaimed the good news.

Then he asks them what they understood from the story. And it’s amazing to see how their understanding of Scripture has grown over the years. Finally, he explains to them that there is another tree that we remember at this time. More than the tree we just set up, it is that tree that gives us true joy and life. Jesus lived a perfect life, which we could never live, and on the cross, Jesus paid the ultimate penalty for our sins that we could never pay. And as we sit around our living room, the warm glow of the Christmas lights filling the room, the gospel just warms our heart to worship this Savour.

We have enjoyed this little family tradition of ours. What is something that you do as a family during this time? Or something that you have done growing up? Share with us, we would love to hear from you.

 

Photo by Thomas Kelley on Unsplash

How Christmas Turns The World Upside Down

Twinkling lights and hot chocolate. Santa Claus and cinnamon rolls. Cozy sweaters and tables weighed down by cookies and cakes.

Those are just some of the reasons I absolutely adore Christmas. Of course, I make it a point, especially with my kids, to focus on the nativity and sing carols and go to church and make shoe boxes filled with gifts for the underprivileged and, you know, put Christ back in Christmas.

But when I stop to think of that first Christmas, it’s so much more than goodwill toward man or the ceramic nativity set or the pillow embroidered with “Jesus is the reason for the season.” It was a toppling over of the world order from an unlikely power hub: an obscure stable in the little town of Bethlehem.

If there’s one thing that first Christmas was not, it’s tame. It was not a silent night where all was calm and all was bright. It was not about a cooing baby and a doting mother, seemingly unruffled by extensive travel and unassisted childbirth.

It was about the God of this universe breaking into the world He created — unwelcome, unheralded, and hunted down. It was about God subverting what was considered important and right and powerful.

Consider the timing of His advent. He didn’t plan on making an entrance when faith had reached a crescendo. In fact, the Bible says that though the world was made through him, the world did not recognise him. He came to his own, and his own did not receive him. (John 1:10, 11)

He came without publicity or fanfare. He who had the angels bow before him, came in anonymity. He showed radical love by divesting himself of all power in a lowly stable as a helpless baby.

The circumstances of his birth, although romanticised by cards and songs and movies, were nothing short of stark and scary.

Mary, an unwed young woman, was found to be with child. His earthly father, Joseph, had to break the law in taking Mary as his wife. The God of all righteousness disrupted what was considered socially acceptable.

He came into a world which, literally, had no room for him. Doors were shut in the face of his parents. Even before his birth, he understood rejection and dead ends.

He was born in threatening times. He was being hunted down by an insane and insecure king.

As a baby, his family had to flee Bethlehem and live as refugees in Egypt. There was nothing comfortable or secure about his life. He knew what it was to be an outsider, a social outcast.

The announcement of his birth was not made to kings or noblemen, but to simple shepherds watching their flocks. He upended the status quo. The meek become powerful. The poor become rich. The last become first.

He toppled over the notions of what God in flesh “should” do. The world expected that a social code would be followed, there would be something celebratory in His birth, some pomp and splendour. But He followed an entirely different script.

That first Christmas, He startled us with His radical love. He confronted us with his gentle power. He shook the world order with his vulnerable entrance into it.

And at the core of it all He was born with one mission: to die so we may live.

The old Sunday School story of a baby born in Bethlehem should leave us astounded. Simply because it’s the greatest, most provocative, most vulnerable love story ever told.

 

Photo by Harry Sandhu on Unsplash

Ideas for a Less Frantic Advent

November has been the busiest month for our family for the last three years, since living in India. My husband is part of a long residential art program, which is a fantastic thing, but we barely see him for three weeks. I don’t mind all that I need to do during this time to hold down the fort, but we all feel pretty exhausted by the end of the month. Especially when lovely factors like monstrous pollution come into play and bring gifts of sickness and closing of schools for days. We hold it together though, making the best of the little snippets of time we have together. This means that during our short nights with my husband, we talk less about our newfound cockroach-problem and the kids’ homework, and more about his experience at work and some meaningful things at home. Hey, some nights we just cuddle on the couch and watch Netflix.

I know by now that we arrive at December physically and mentally drained and ready for rest, ready for connection and quiet, but also with regular life tasks to catch up on (see: cockroaches). This time we will add having to find a new apartment by the end of the year. Advent? Christmas? Can it all please just wait a month?

Looking towards Christmas, I already feel the pressure, the gap between the kind of season and atmosphere I would like to create and what I feel we have the mental, emotional and physical resources to do. I would love to bake Hungarian pastries, do cute crafts with the kids, create homemade gifts for friends and neighbours, go carolling, watch Christmas movies, make a wreath and an Advent calendar, spend time with people in our community, create new traditions, all the while focusing on the meaning of this time. I feel anxiety rising already as I’m typing this.

So I am deciding that instead of the all too familiar mom-guilt over failing to achieve the Pinterest Christmas season I dream of, I will aim for a simple Advent of true possibilities for our family. I will focus on the values we want to pursue, more than the activities. I have yet to find Mason jars, food colouring and glitter in Delhi, anyways.

For me this means making a plan ahead of time and putting down on paper what really matters, so I can come back to it when the pressure rises. What are some practical things we can do to emphasise peace, love, joy and hope during the Advent season? How do we make it a time that we can enjoy, when we can rest and offer rest to others, when we have space to quiet down outside and inside and be in awe? How can this season, even if busy, not be a flurry of frustrated activities and never-ending to-do lists in order to satisfy our perfectionism, but a time of joyful waiting and preparing our hearts?

Here are some ideas I came up with. Maybe they can be useful to you and your family as well.

Say no to things that bring anxiety: We don’t have to decorate the whole apartment. We don’t have to bake six different kinds of dessert. We don’t need to send out hundreds of Christmas cards. Pick some things your family enjoys and do them with care and love. I will choose three and only three craft activities for the month and do them with my son and daughter with patience, joy and silliness. (My daughter asked for a big pack of white paper for Christmas so she can draw as much as she wants. There’s plenty of imagination here, no need for crafts overload.)

Get involved in the story: We will use a simple Bible reading plan for Advent that we can do together as a family, and we won’t leave it for the last 5 minutes before bedtime. I am looking forward to walking through the story and taking time to reflect together as our anticipation grows.

Pray for others as a family: Instead of revising their Christmas gift list for the 54th time, my kids can write a list of people and things to lift up before our heavenly Father. We can put them in a jar and pull one out each day of Advent.

Invite others in: Enjoying food and fun and creating new traditions with people from our church family is a great way to tighten friendships. It might even help with homesickness for some of us. We can also remember that Christmas is not a happy time for everyone and ask God to give our family sensitivity and openness to include others in our days.

Be present: Limiting our time on electronics allows us to be in the same spot physically and mentally and give the most precious gift to each other: attention. As a plus, spending less time on social media will help us compare less to other people’s amazing Christmas projects and preparations 🙂

When the gap widens between your hopes for the season and your reality, take some time out: Quieting our spirit and coming back to basics on the meaning of Christmas can help us realise that some of the stuff we want to do is less about love and more about pleasing people. Christmas is not about pleasing our families, our friends, our children, or the perfectionist inside us. No food, tradition, gift or “fun” activity is worth it if it will leave us grumpy and frustrated with each other.

No matter how idyllic our Christmas season turns out, we have plenty of reasons for thankfulness and joy. The cookies can burn, the decorations be scarce, the tree fake and our plans unfinished, but we can choose peace, joy, love and hope together. The babe is born; God with us.

What are some of your ideas for a slow, peace-filled Advent season?

 

Photo Credit : Unsplash

Aunty Ivy’s Tirunelveli Mutton Curry

The first time I tried this mutton curry I felt so warm and cozy inside. My cousin-brother’s wife had come to visit me in Dallas when I was sick and she made this amazing curry to cheer me up. Well, it did the trick! She confessed that it wasn’t her own recipe, but that it belonged to her Ivy Athai (aunty). So thank you Amu Akka (older sister) for letting us in on your family recipe.

This mutton curry has the perfect balance of spice and texture. It has this authentic South Indian taste. Goes really well with idli, Kal Dosai (the thick dosa and not the crispy ones you get at Saravana Bhavan) or just plain hot, steamed rice. The good thing about this versatile recipe is that spice and texture can be adjusted according to your liking and you can substitute chicken for mutton. I have tried it with both types of meat and the curry tastes just as amazing, either way.

The recipe that I am listing below is for 1 Kg of mutton and the spices are adjusted to meet my family’s taste requirements.

Recipe

Ingredients

For the meat

  • 1 kg mutton
  • 1 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 fistful dry desiccated coconut (if fresh ground coconut is available even better)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 2 onions finely chopped
  • Sufficient water to cover the meat while cooking
  • Salt to taste

For the masala powder

  • 1 tsp whole black pepper
  • 1 tsp jeera (cumin)
  • 1 tsp sonf (fennel)
  • 1 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 fistful raw rice or 2 heaped tsp

For finishing

  • 2-3 tsp sesame seed oil or vegetable oil
  • Few mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds
  • 2 large onions finely chopped
  • Few curry leaves

Method

  1. Wash the meat with salt and turmeric.
  2. Pressure cook the mutton with the ginger garlic paste, chilli powder, turmeric power, coconut, onions, water and salt for 20 minutes. If you are making this recipe for chicken then do not pressure cook the meat, just cook it with all this in an open Kadai or pan till the meat is fully cooked.
  3. Dry roast the whole spices – pepper, coriander seeds, jeera and sonf. Dry roast the raw rice too. Grind it to a fine powder in a food processor or mixie. If you like your curry to have some texture then don’t grind it to a fine powder. Pulse it to your required texture. Set this aside.
  4. In a large Kadai, add some oil. Splutter the mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds. Make sure you add very little fenugreek seeds otherwise the curry might taste slightly bitter. Sauté the curry leaves as well.
  5. To this add the boiled, fully cooked mutton or chicken.
  6. As the curry boils add the masala powder that you have ground a little at a time. Once you are satisfied with the spice level you can stop adding the masala powder.* Let it boil for 2-3 minutes after this and turn off the stove.  If you want it extra spicy you can sauté two or three green chilies and add it at the end.

    

 

*I have tried different spice levels depending on the guests I cook it for. The raw rice powder and coconut offset the spiciness and most often I add the entire masala mix that I have prepared.

I hope you enjoy making this authentic curry. Go ahead floor your guests!

Begin Again

Everything starts with a dream. We were created with the gift to dream, imagine, and create. And unless we dream, we seldom imagine — and without both, it’s impossible to create. That leaves us with nothing.

Each of us have a story of our own. Maybe, we chased our dream and watched it come to life. But maybe, we gave up our dream because we got too tired waiting for it. Maybe, we were too scared of the possibility of being disappointed and felt it was safer to let go. Maybe, we stopped dreaming altogether because it felt selfish to dream of more.

Being a dreamer doesn’t equal being selfish. It’s an act of faith. To dream, we first encounter the extraordinary love of God. To dream big is saying, “I know I can’t, but I know God can.” Ephesians 3:20 says:

Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energises you.

God loves when we dream big. In fact, His dreams for us are bigger than our own. So, don’t settle for dreams that are good enough. Instead, dream BIG because we know that God has our best interest at heart. And when we dream something that can’t be done in our own strength, that’s when the power of God kicks in. The size of our God should determine the size of our dream.

Last week, I walked into a store and picked out a camera for myself. I picked out the model, colour, a pair of lenses, the warranty package and even a bag to keep it in. Realistically, it’s more than I’d probably spend. But not for God. I may — or may not — buy it someday. That is fine with me. It isn’t about the camera, it’s about knowing that He is attentive to what I like. It’s about being able to share my hopes and desires with Him. And it’s about acknowledging Him as the source of all good and perfect gifts.

If you want something, you must dare to ask for it. Write out a detailed description of your dream. Make your dream measurable. Make your dream a plan. Share it with God and trust that it’s on its way. Believe me, it takes more courage than you’d imagine.

When dreams seem to drag on and on, the wait can be discouraging. But when, at last, your dream comes true, it will satisfy your soul. If you have given up on dreams along the way, it’s time to dream again. Begin again, and out-dream yourself! Psalms 37:4:

Make God the utmost delight and pleasure of your life, and he will provide for you what you desire the most.

 

Photo by Kelli Stirrett on Unsplash

Joy in the Midst of Pain

We struggle almost every day. Perhaps I speak as a 20-something, but you get what I mean. Sometimes it feels as though the world conspires to go against you in everything and our dreams and desires come crashing down. Sylvia Plath rightly claims:

Life has been some combination of fairy-tale coincidence and joie de vivre and shocks of beauty together with some hurtful self-questioning.

Perhaps we also owe it to PMS for a few of the more intense bouts of feeling, because it seems completely valid to dwell on them!

Of late, life (at 24 . . . I know, I know) seems to be getting harder each day. Being a woman, things seem to keep changing faces constantly and come unexpectedly with “trouble” written on their foreheads – from relationships, to family, to single-hood, to marriage, to work . . . the list goes on and on.  (I don’t mean this to say men have less things to worry about, I am merely speaking from my own perspective.)

Troubles that once seemed so far away are now suddenly parading the streets outside my window, and come knocking at the door almost as if to break it down. Indifference kicks in as an automatic defense mechanism, knowing no other way to deal with this looming cloud of darkness. The sense that life couldn’t get any harder than this tugs at my sanity, it even sours my relationships with others, and that must be avoided at all costs!

I love order – I enjoy management and keeping things going in a perfect manner as planned. But life throws a wrench in the works and I find myself completely lost, struck with a mixture of emotions – everything at the same time!

But having said this, it reminds me of something Tim Keller once said:

Nothing is more important than to learn how to maintain a life of purpose in the midst of painful adversity.

So how do I maintain a life of purpose amid troubles that seem endless?

I’ve learned the best place to start is reading the Word and breathing a word of prayer. 2 Corinthians 4:7, 8:

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard-pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.

Even through tears, reading this fills me with joy and peace and I am completely overwhelmed!

I am not crushed, nor am I driven to despair amid perplexities, troubles and being struck down as if never to get back up. No matter how many times I am beaten up and crushed both in spirit and soul, I am not destroyed even if it does feel like it most of the time. I revel in this truth and hope that He gives. His promises are true. Even in moments like these when fear takes over, I know God is in control. He commands us “not to fear.” What/whom, then, shall I fear, when the God of angel armies is by my side?

Paul suffered immensely, but God’s grace is sufficient to drive him to call his troubles “light” and “momentary.” His Grace far outweighs my troubles and fear that I dwell on constantly. It must cause thanksgiving to overflow instead.

Do we praise God enough in our troubles that seem endless?

Trust is accepting what God sends into your life whether you understand it or not.

I don’t claim to know everything, nor say my troubles have all vanished in an instant. But despite dark clouds still over my head, I can confidently say that I trust in the God I serve and believe in. He knows my needs, my desires, and my life is mapped out in His great plan. I need a heart that obeys Him in an openness of faith where I will be able to do what He tells me even if I don’t want to. Only His Grace can accomplish that!

CS Lewis puts it so aptly:

. . . the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead.

It still leaves me in tears and and I still struggle to say, “Lord, give me grace and obedience to get through this today.” But I choose to believe that adversity is a fire that refines, beautifies and strengthens my soul. I have not lost heart because we are renewed inwardly every day. Even when we don’t know everything, we must choose to listen and obey.

God doesn’t always make His will clear because He values our being transformed more than our being informed.

 

 

Photo Credit : Unsplash

When Love Took Flight

There comes a time in everyone’s lives, let alone the believer’s, when we see the harsh reality of living life in a sinful world. The parallels of Life and Death are on either side of us at all times, and it’s a tricky road to walk.

Rewind to three months ago . . . I was in a state of bliss. My married life had just begun. After a great day of shopping with the husband, I went to my parents’ place three streets away from mine. My mom made a big fuss when I came home – she treated me like I still hadn’t left her nest. I enjoyed it thoroughly! I remember that day so vividly. When she got me a glass of milk to drink, she combed my hair and told me how she waited impatiently for my visits.

Why do I remember this particular day above any other? Because only a month later, she left our abode for the eternal one above.

My world was left shattered. Now, I often think of how life changes in a day. To call it “the death of a loved one” is an understatement here.

My mother was suffering from jaundice-like symptoms for 2 months before she was hospitalised, where they diagnosed her with a rare liver disease. A week later, she left with faith.

My faith, on the other hand, was a different story. My faith had always been honoured by God, I thought this time would be no exception. Till the point of her death, I held on with faith so strong that tears never fell. But God taught me the FIRST important lesson that day. Proverbs 19:21:

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.

It could not have been clearer than that. At all times, no matter what we plan, who we plan it with and how we plan it . . . short-term goals, long-term dreams . . . God’s will prevails above all. And hallelujah for that, because when it falls within His will, He will most definitely carry us through the good and bad of it all.

I dreaded the days that lay ahead. I knew I would be a wreck without my mother. My mother kept teaching me how to live life until the very point of her death. She taught me everything I knew about God before I started experiencing His power and presence myself. She taught me how to put God first before anything and everything. She taught how it was God and me against the world.

I remember my Uncle putting an arm around me and asking me this question, “Who do you think can fill the void your mother left?” I had an immediate answer, “No one.” After all, who could replace the love, the laughter, the lessons a mother gave? But he disagreed. He told me otherwise. “It’s God. Only He can.”

I was proved wrong. God did fill that void. In my bitter sorrow that over-shadowed all, I never even asked God for help. But He still held me through my pain, just like my mother used to do. Whenever I miss my mother now, I remember her laughter with a smile on my face, because I have the assuring voice of God telling me that she’s laughing now — ten times more joyfully than she ever did on Earth! She’s in a place of never-ending happiness and no sorrow. She’s no longer in the state of pain that she previously was. She no longer has to carry the burdens she did in this world. On the other hand, we, on Earth, have not yet reached that place.

This is where God taught me the SECOND important lesson. John 16:33:

In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

This verse that seemed so unrelatable at some point in life, when life was so rosy, suddenly seems so glaringly obvious now. Earlier, I used to breeze through this verse with a confident shrug that God had it all covered. He most definitely has, even now, but not in the way we perceive — in ways unfathomable to human perception. Sometimes, ways that may bring bitter sorrow and disappointment, but always done with the best of intentions from God.

Finally, the THIRD important lesson that God led me to learn was from someplace unorthodox. It was something I had read a while back by a man of celebrity status, who had posted on Twitter,

Say it before you run out of time. Say it before it’s too late. Say what you’re feeling. Waiting is a mistake.

God made sure I learned this before my mom went and I’m so glad He did! If there is one thing that I have no regrets about, it is this. I loved my mom so much and I took an effort to make sure she knew it. From the point that I realised what an amazing blessing it was to have my mother, I thanked her for any gesture of hers, both big and small. I appreciated her efforts to keep me happy and spent any and every spare time on the phone with her when we were apart. I do know that this isn’t an innate character trait of mine, but rather a character trait inherited from my mother. God taught me to appreciate people’s love, but more importantly, at the right time. To say a simple thank you would even suffice (if not a return in the same way) because it expresses your acknowledgement of their efforts, before it’s too late to say so.

I realised that we might be led to believe that our loved ones will stay with us for a significant period of time, if not forever. But that is the most dangerous facade we can believe in. Rather, we need to open our minds and look at the ones we have now. Who are these people that God has placed in our lives to fill it with love and happiness? Anyone from family to a friend to even a stranger who made a difference. Let’s not forget to acknowledge a selfless gesture. Let’s not forget to give the love that God taught us to share. Let’s strive to emulate our God and His Agape love. “We love because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19).

Life may be difficult now, without my mother but it’s not impossible — as I imagined my life would be. God has stayed by my side, His presence has always been near, not because I asked Him to, but without conditions, because that is the God we serve. I knew the love of my mother for a short 23 years, but it has filled a lifetime for me. What comes next is the blessed assurance that God has started filling the void my mother left, the moment she took flight . . .

 

Photo by Ameen Fahmy on Unsplash

The Trial of Abundance

The weekend was finally here! I could finish that novel I’d started, perhaps watch two or three episodes of that TV serial I so enjoyed, and surf through Instagram, guilt-free.

I set out to put this plan into action. Yet, I found no joy in any of these leisure activities. Don’t get me wrong. I wanted to enjoy every minute of them. Yet strangely enough, I felt only sadness and guilt.

I kept feeling like I ought to be spending time with God.

But I knew that would require time and discipline — both of which I was unwilling to give. I would need to quiet my heart and mind and stay still until I heard Him speak. Moreover, since He is the God of the universe, His timing and mine wouldn’t exactly match. There would be waiting involved. And I was just not ready to lose my weekend to that!

It gets worse. My guilt came not from the fact that I was turning down time with my Maker but rather from the thought that this would be a “blemish on my record of spiritual consistency.”[1] It’s like I had a mental checklist of spiritual activities that needed to be done daily — ensuring I met this target implied I was a “Good Christian.”

Which is ridiculous when stated so plainly — but the human heart is deceptive!

This quote by Keith Green the singer gave me an unpleasant shock:

If your heart takes more pleasure in reading novels, or watching TV, or going to the movies, or talking to friends, than in just sitting alone with God and embracing Him, sharing His cares and His burdens, weeping and rejoicing with Him, then how are you going to handle forever and ever in His presence? You’d be bored to tears in heaven if you’re not ecstatic about God now.

As I dwelt on that notion for a while, I wondered how I’d arrived at this place in my life.

Looking back, I noticed that things had begun to gradually weaken when life began to look rosy. We weren’t facing a crisis, my family was safe, things were going well, and life was good. I’d begun to sink into a state of self-dependence because I didn’t desperately need God for anything. That was my problem — I didn’t need God because I had an abundance of both material and spiritual blessings.

These weren’t bad things in themselves! Yet this season of plenty was more deadly than a season of lack. I had never seen the abundance of good things as a trial. But in actuality, it was war — it was filling me with self-confidence, pushing me to find my joy in the things of this world, to find my strength in myself, to not treasure the Giver but rather the treasures themselves.

The thing is, these “treasures” are imposters — the only real treasure always is Yahweh Himself!

Abundance and need are both trials, but I am realizing that the trial of abundance is spiritually harder to face faithfully. Jon Bloom puts it like this:

Abundance easily obscures our vulnerabilities, giving us a misleading sense of security, and often a false sense of independence. The danger lies precisely in the fact that it doesn’t feel dangerous. We tend to like the feeling it gives. Being people whose sinful, self-centred pride is far more pervasive and powerful than we are usually aware of, we love the sense of autonomy and indulgent opportunities wealth affords. We love not feeling needy. We consider that normal. [2]

Yet, this is not normal. Life will never be normal on this side of eternity. Until I truly understand that, I will always tend to slip into a state of luke-warmness.

So I’m learning to deal with abundance as I would suffering — realising this is all a mirage, I cling to the Lord, seeking Him, regardless of how I feel. I’m learning to be wary of the pitfalls and beware complacency and independence, understanding that I am always needy — which is a good place to be.

I do the works He has prepared for me to accomplish in the midst of my weaknesses, inadequacies, and failures because God is glorified when I come to the end of myself.

 

[1] Jimmy Needham, ‘The Prosperity Gospel in our Closet’, www.desiringgod.org

[2] Jon Bloom, ‘At Least as Dangerous as Porn’, www.desiringgod.org

Photo by Thomas Pierre on Unsplash

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