Love and Free Will

Light hand knows confidence. Tight hand knows fear.

Controlling love is an oxymoron. The moment we try to control by means of love is the moment we cease loving. It matters not if our control has good intentions or is kind and gentle. We cannot and must not call this love. Therefore, love respects the other’s free will—to choose however deemed best. To manipulate or remove this choice is to simply confuse love with self-interest.

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Stewarding Love

Tantalizing temptation of tight hand upon you returns upon me.

Surrendering to God will cost you everything. But this is nothing compared to what he gives in return. Spiritual, physical, emotional, and social health are just some of the riches we discover from submitting our hearts to God. Recently, we’ve discussed how such surrender is the best asset for healthy social relationships and today we’ll consider the implications of this claim.

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Facing the Fear of Trust

Light hand relaxes… it knows where to place its tight hand – on God.

Human relationships rise or fall upon the currency of trust. Yet for so many, trust does not come easily. It’s difficult because it requires exposure; and few things are more potentially devastating than an exposed heart. Some people never move past such loss and most only do so with great emotional and mental effort. But if we’re willing, God can help us learn to trust again.

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Love and Significance

Promotion of life in light grip . . . and love’s flower blooms.

Human beings are intrinsically social. Our rich and complex relational skills uniquely distinguish us from any other creature on the planet. Regardless of introverted or extroverted personalities, humans are wired to be most complete when in relationship with others. Genesis 2:18 speaks of the importance of humanity’s social origins when God declared, “It is not good for man to be alone.”

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Surrendered Love

The next several weeks of posts will be based on our most recent devotional poem, “Light Hand or Tight Hand?” Click here to see the full text.


Light hand holds as only a steward. Tight hand in idolatry grasps.

There is no pain deeper than lost love and no joy greater than its acquisition. When we unselfishly love, we become more complete for we partake in the very nature of God (I John 4:12). Wars have been fought, fortunes forsaken, and unspeakable suffering endured all for the cause of love. So, to find love is to find the greatest of all gifts. And when it’s found who would dare let it go? We should and we must if we hope it might be what we dream that it could; for this is exactly what God asks us to do. Continue reading “Surrendered Love”

Devotional Poem: Light Hand or Tight Hand?

This week we launch our tenth devotional poem. The next five weeks of blog posts will draw from themes in this poem, applying Christian faith to relationships.


Light Hand or Tight Hand?

Light hand holds as only a steward.

Tight hand in idolatry grasps.

Light hand loosely holds, relaxes.

Tight hand fearfully grips, trembles. Continue reading “Devotional Poem: Light Hand or Tight Hand?”

Losing Control

Change, I do not need you! Alteration, variation, transformation, you are not my need!

Human life has an interesting relationship with change. When life is good, we fear it. When life is bad, we earnestly seek it. Change is uncomfortable and often inconvenient but life would literally cease without it. And in our most difficult times, it is change we tend to focus on as our life-line from troubled waters. Yes, as long as we are alive we can be sure that change is here to stay. Continue reading “Losing Control”

Faith’s Defining Moment

I now see your ever-present love, and not just now but always before.

One of the greatest challenges to Christian faith is learning how to overcome the disappointment of unanswered questions. Here the Christian faces the glaring interrogation, “Will you believe even if you don’t understand?” This question strikes at the very center of our faith—choosing to believe in spite of rational certainty. Such resolution is, itself, necessary for taking up the call to Christian surrender. Continue reading “Faith’s Defining Moment”

The Cost of Vision

When I see me honestly, I see Him accurately.

It is not very often today that we hear people talking about having visions of God . . . at least not without having their sanity questioned! Such talk, however, used to be a normal part of the Church’s vocabulary. The Christian tradition speaks of the “beatific vision” as seeing and experiencing the glory and light of God. While it is common for Christians to anticipate such a vision in heaven (I Cor. 13:12), many have grasped such an image this side of glory. Continue reading “The Cost of Vision”

Seeing With the Eyes of Faith

I now can see, I have new eyes.

Faith is a mystery, plain and simple. It is not dependent upon what is seen yet it is able to influence what we see. As human beings we tend to believe what we see but as Christians we are called to believe what we do not see (Hebrews 11:1). So what exactly is the relationship between faith and sight? Continue reading “Seeing With the Eyes of Faith”