Monthly Archives: June 2014

Is it Worse Now?

Child Soldiers

I Wonder … Is it Worse Now? 

Jesus mentioned an increase in wickedness would mark the End of the Age. Is wickedness increasing or do we just have better media coverage?

 I live in Mid-America where few major current events touch my life. Some friends say they don’t watch the news anymore because it’s too depressing, but part of my morning routine is clicking on my computer Home Page to check breaking news. Jesus’ admonition to “keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come,” reminds me to keep an eye on what is happening in the rest of the world.

To many of us, who live in so-called democratic countries, the signs of tribulation are still on the far horizon. We faintly see the rising dust from martyrs fleeing ahead of militants, terrorists, and power-crazed godless people, who desire to wipe out Christianity, but fears of martyrdom never enter our minds.

I wonder …   do the fleeing people
believe wickedness is increasing? 

Some weeks the world is so calm that reporters must beat old stories to a mushy pulp or else inflate a politically incorrect word or statement in order to fill air time. Other weeks, the world seems to explode with stories of wickedness involving children, families, schools, cities, and nations. Gangs, dictators, warring ethnic groups, creators of violent movies and games astound us with their creations of here-to-for- unimagined evil.

When the Apostle Paul wrote to the Thessalonians about the return of the Lord Jesus Christ, he said, “For the secret power of lawlessness is already at work; but the one who now holds it back will continue to do so till he is taken out of the way.” 

I wonder … are we seeing the “One who holds back the wickedness,” beginning to occasionally lift a hand off our world for a day or two so that we can see how really bad this world will be when Christ returns, takes out the righteous people, and leaves only the wicked?

I wonder … is wickedness, gaining momentum?  

I, as others, have my suspicions, but no one really knows. I do know, that these are days to be alert and watchful. We must be alert to both how the devil is prowling around our individual lives and how the devil is expanding lawlessness to prepare the way for the revealing of the Lawless One. (II Thessalonians 2:1-12)

Jesus repeatedly said, “Watch!”

Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man. Luke 21:36

What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’ (Mark 13:37)

Martha Hawn VanCise©2014




An Ordinary Day

Finding God on an ordinary day

Today is an ordinary day.
I have no nagging worries,
no underlying tensions,
no requests to make of You.

I come to Your Word, looking to grab a quick energizer verse for my day. When I open your Word, however, I find that on this ordinary day you have set the table for me with the best china. On this ordinary day, you have prepared a feast of living bread and meat to strengthen me for days ahead that won’t be ordinary.

On this ordinary day, I stop, I take time to savor and enjoy fellowship with you and the meal that you have prepared for me.

Martha Hawn VanCise©2014


Give the Gift of Grace

Gift of God's GraceWe sing
Amazing Grace
Wonderful Grace of Jesus
Your Grace Is Enough

We read
What’s So Amazing About Grace?
The Grace Awakening
aptured by Grace

In worship we thank God for the gift of grace. As Christians, however, we have a responsibility to do more than receive and celebrate the grace of God.  We have the responsibility to extend God’s grace to others.

How do we give God’s grace to others?

The Apostle Peter said, “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. “ (I Peter 4:10: NIV 1973)

What natural gift has God given you?
What spiritual gift has God given you?

Use your gifts to extend God’s grace to all people.

Martha Hawn VanCise©2014 www/