JahazielA month ago, legendary Christian rapper Jahaziel walked away from his faith. He’d been a professing Christian for twenty years. Online magazine Rapzilla called him the most important U.K. artist in the history of Christian hip-hop. But Jahaziel couldn’t reconcile the mass killings in the Bible with the idea of a loving God.

He posted on Facebook saying, “You can believe the bible and its God all you want but to me he just demands my fear because he cannot earn my respect. I cannot possibly agree that he is love unless I ignore all the men, women and little children he has slaughtered throughout the entire bible…I have tasted and seen – and my conclusion is that Christianity (it’s flawed book, bloodthirsty god and mythical savior) I have found unsatisfactory and unworthy of my allegiance or worship unless by threatening to kill me if I don’t – as Christianity does.”

Kirsten PowersKirsten Powers, a Democratic commentator at Fox News, was an atheist for most of her life. Beautiful, bright, and successful, she had no desperate reason to need God. Christianity Today reported that Powers described herself as wavering “between atheism and agnosticism, never coming close to considering that God could be real.” She said, “I would never adhere to any religion—especially to evangelical Christianity, which I held in particular contempt.”

Her boyfriend at the time, wanted to get hitched but said he couldn’t marry a non-Christian. He asked her if she could keep an open mind about faith. That did it! Wanting to be seen as open-minded, she started attending Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City.

Pastor Tim Keller

Pastor Tim Keller

After eight months of listening to Pastor Tim Keller’s astute sermons, she decided the evidence supporting Christianity was there. Still, she didn’t feel any connection to God and thought people who said they heard God’s voice or had experiences were either delusional or lying.

Jesus Walks on WaterRight about that time, Powers took an overseas trip. One morning while sleeping, she experienced a strange cross between a dream and reality. In that instant, Jesus appeared to her and said, “Here I am.”

The experience was more than a little traumatizing.Continue reading

A Single Word

A Single Word

I asked, and He answered.

God is more accessible than you might think. But how does communication start? How do you really know it’s God?

In my last blog, I encouraged you to write down three unresolved questions you’ve had on your heart. Then ask God for one word, a word that serves as a key, unlocking understanding and wisdom. A word that can encourage you or bring instruction. A word (if negative in connotation) that can reveal the needling angle of the enemy. It can start—with just a word.

“The Lord God has given Me the tongue of disciples,

That I may know how to sustain the weary one with a word.

He awakens Me morning by morning,

He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple.”

—Isaiah 50:4 (NASB)

So after I made this suggestion to you, I took one of my own questions to God. Here’s what happened…Continue reading

Lost Outside

Lost Outside

It was all so perfect. We’d planned it for months! And as we hoped, the surprise brought more unfettered joy than I’d seen in a child for a long time.

She asked, “Is Christmas, um…nexterday?” As a four-year-old, she was searching for the word “tomorrow.”

“Yes,” I said, “Tomorrow, and tonight is Christmas Eve!”

Santa BagWe sat around the dinner table in the soft glow of candlelight. When I finished eating, I took some garbage out to the garage and snuck around to the front door to leave a small Santa bag on the doormat. Then I knocked hard three times, before running back through the garage into the house.

My granddaughter nearly jumped out of her pajamas.

“Someone’s here!” Her mother played along with enthusiasm.

“What! What’s going on?” I said.

“There was a knock!” she said to me, half-scared, half-excited. She wiggled down from her father’s arms, and we tiptoed to the door. I unlocked it and slowly opened the door a crack. No one was there. Only the Santa Bag! She shrieked with delight as Santa had brought an early present the same way last Christmas.

ErnieInside, wrapped in white tissue paper and tied with a red ribbon…Continue reading