Forward Day by Day, Psalm 78:1, Listening, Heart

Ears Are a Gateway to the Heart

Psalm 78:1. “Hear my teaching, O my people; incline your ears to the words of my mouth.” Several years ago, I spent a summer participating in a pastoral care internship. As the summer progressed, I realized I was really doing an internship on learning to listen. I came to understand that listening is essential for good pastoral care, but it is also essential to having … Continue reading Ears Are a Gateway to the Heart

Forward Day by Day, John 4:11, Samaritan Woman, Living Water, Thirst

Where Do You Get That Living Water?

John 4:11. “The woman said to [Jesus], ‘Sir, you have no bucket and the well is deep. Where do you get that living water?’” The Samaritan woman’s question about living water is not just a question; it is also a confession. She doesn’t have “living water” and doesn’t know where to get it. I know this woman, and I understand her. Maybe you do too. … Continue reading Where Do You Get That Living Water?

Forward Day by Day, John 5:8, Grace, Healing, Faith

Getting Unstuck

John 5:8. “Jesus said to him, ‘Stand up, take your mat and walk.’” I sometimes need to get up and get going. At times, I have put my life on hold. I’ve pushed the pause button. I’ve filed my life in a folder labeled “Action Pending.” These moments mostly happen when I’m waiting for something or someone to change. In those times, I’m as blind, … Continue reading Getting Unstuck

Forward Day by Day, Psalm 62:1, Silence, Prayer

Prayer Begins When the Words End

Psalm 62:1. “For God alone my soul in silence waits; from him comes my salvation.” One Sunday, years ago, I knelt to pray before the liturgy began, as was my usual practice. I always had something to tell or ask God. This day, however, was different. I had no words. It wasn’t that I had nothing to say—I simply lacked words capable of expressing what … Continue reading Prayer Begins When the Words End

Forward Day by Day, John 4:42, Faith

Secondhand Faith or Firsthand Experience?

John 4:42. “[The Samaritans] said to the woman, ‘It is no longer because of what you said that we believe, for we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this is truly the Savior of the world.’” There’s a difference between listening to someone describe a sunset and seeing the colors for yourself, between reading glowing reviews for a great restaurant and eating a … Continue reading Secondhand Faith or Firsthand Experience?