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Staff Trax

Prayer Time

Do you pray at a specific time during the day? Some people pray many times throughout the day, and others specify a certain time to pray.

Morning Prayers: People who pray in the morning feel good about starting their day off right. They look at prayer as a way to navigate their daily priorities. They ask God to help them manage their actions and speech. They may ask God for strength to handle…

Making Meaning with Jesus

Christianity continues to struggle with a spiritual identity crisis. Recently, the Pew Research Center reported that the number of Christians in the United States is expected to decrease to between 35% and 54% of the population by 2070. At the same time, people who identify as atheist, agnostic, or “nothing in particular” could rise to somewhere between 34% and 52% of the population.

While…

We Pray for Blessings

There’s a song we’ve sung over the years at Salem titled “Blessings” that says, “What if Your blessings come through raindrops? What if Your healing comes through tears? What if 1,000 sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near?”

It was written by Laura Story after her husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor and their prayers for healing were not being answered.…

Fall Is Upon Us!

September is one of the busiest months of the year. In a strange way, it seems like the beginning of the holiday season. The retail stores are certainly trying to tell us that we better go to the stores and start buying things for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas all at one time.

I don’t know about you, but this causes me stress. I am not ready for the holidays to be upon us in September.…

Soak up the Summer

Summer is almost over. School started a couple of weeks ago, and before you know it there will be a chill in the air. It is time to get all of those things on your summer “bucket list” done before you run out of time.

Kids started a normal school year for the first time since 2019. Masks are optional, classes are normal schedule, and activities are back in full swing.

A few weeks…

Fill Your Glory

OPEN YOUR MOUTH WIDE AND I WILL FILL IT.

Psalm 81:1, Psalm 81:10-16.

If we allow that the summons to praise (Psalm 81:1) is a call to celebrate the kingship of the LORD, it is because He, and He alone, is God (Psalm 81:9-10; cf. Deuteronomy 6:4-5).

Psalm 81:10. “I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt.” We sometimes need to be reminded of what God has…

A Season of New Beginnings

The end of August reminds me of the verse from Ecclesiastes 3:1, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven.”

Though not yet autumn, the carefree days of summer are now behind us. Nature speaks this truth in manifold ways. The days are growing shorter, trees and shrubs are revealing hints of impending change, and the squirrels are quickening…

Raising the Heat

I’m not a fan of conflict. Thankfully, I didn’t have to deal with it much growing up; my extended family all got along and went out of their way to spend happy time together. My parents always “presented a united front” to us, so we never saw them argue, or really even disagree. They both knew several foreign languages, so perhaps some of the negotiation was in front of us, but we didn’t…

A Different Kind of Grandmother

My parents were older when I was born. Therefore, only one grandparent was alive when I came into the world. I had the best grandmother in the world. She was an elderly woman. Small but mighty. She was grumpy and harsh sometimes, but that never affected me. She never spoiled me as a child. She could not afford to buy me things.

However, she made the not-so-fun things like naps incredibly…

Rich in God’s Love

(Jesus) said to them, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” Then he told them a parable: “The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’ Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones,…

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