Posts by Rev. Steve Holm (Page 3)

Posts by Rev. Steve Holm (Page 3)

Daily Devotions

In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit;” vs. 13                  Ephesians 1:8-14 Even though we have been destined in Christ to live holy and blameless lives in love, there comes a time, sometimes as children, perhaps as adults, when we have the opportunity to affirm that destiny. The writer to the Ephesians describes that moment…

Daily Devotions

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless before him in love.” vss. 3-4 Ephesians 1:3-10 There are some who teach and believe that humans have a heritage that stretches back to the very beginning, that we were created as spiritual children of God long…

Daily Devotions

He declares his word to Jacob, his statutes and ordinances to Israel. He has not dealt thus with any other nation; they do not know his ordinances. Praise the Lord!” vss. 19-20 Psalm 147:18-20 Sometimes Americans get irritated by the legal excesses that seem to pop up from time to time. It seems there are rules for everything–most recently there have been mask and vaccination mandates issued by various arms of the government to stem the spread of Covid. Some…

Daily Devotions

He gives snow like wool; he scatters frost like ashes. He hurls down hail like crumbs— who can stand before his cold?” vss. 16-17 Psalm 147:12-17 It’s almost as though the psalmist is offering this song of praise from Minneapolis instead of Jerusalem, but evidently winters could be tough there too! He wants his readers to know that they have it good, and even cold, snowy weather should be seen as a gift from God. His point is plain! All…

Daily Devotions

Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance, and the young men and the old shall be merry. I will turn their mourning into joy, I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow.” vs. 13 Jeremiah 31:7-14 There was a time when confirmation instruction included long diatribes by pastors about the evils of dance, card-playing, drinking, and movies. Some confirmands got the notion that being a follower of Jesus was a pretty joyless enterprise and couldn’t wait…

Daily Devotions

Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and in years, and in divine and human favor.” vss. 51-52 Luke 2:41-52 The four gospels found in our scriptures say virtually nothing about Jesus’ life before his baptism. Essentially he came out of nowhere and changed the world! But we do have one little story, one that Luke discovered and…

Daily Devotions

And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.” vs. 14 John 1:1-14 Christmas Day There was just something about Jesus! It wasn’t that he had magic powers or was more handsome than anyone else. From the little we know, he was probably quite ordinary, hardly distinguishable from any other Galilean. But some saw something in him–a passion that guided his…

Daily Devotions

In that region there were shepherds living in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night.” vs. 8 Luke 2:8-14 Christmas Eve Tonight there will be worship services at the Shepherd’s Fields, just outside of Bethlehem. The crowds will be small–Israel’s borders remain closed to foreign visitors. But worshippers will be there, huddled outside against the chill on a dark hillside with the lights of Jewish settlements just across the valley. Aside from a small beautifully adorned modern chapel,…

Daily Devotions

And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.” vs. 7 Luke 2:1-7 This verse paints a heartbreaking scene, and we know it well–it’s the centerpiece of every Sunday School Christmas program and nearly every home has at least one nativity packed away for seasonal display. Luke crafted the story with purpose–he wants his readers to know that…

Daily Devotions

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all, training us to renounce impiety and worldly passions, and in the present age to live lives that are self-controlled, upright, and godly…” vss. 11-12 Titus 2:11-14 This little letter, likely composed sometime in the late first century, provides a picture of the Nativity that we could well take to heart as we put the final touches on our Christmas preparations. It’s been a long Advent, and the ongoing concerns…

Daily Devotions

For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; he is to be revered above all gods.” vs. 4 Psalm 96 Even though some say that atheism is on the march and that fewer people believe in God, the truth is that there are a plethora of gods available in the marketplace. Humans have never been without their gods and new ones are being invented every day–and there are plenty of suppliants, all ready to offer sacrifices on the…

Daily Devotions

For a child has been born for us, a son given to us; authority rests upon his shoulders; and he is named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” vs. 6 Isaiah 9:2-7 Coronations were a big deal in the nation of Judah. They were a time for celebrations and extravagant displays; the prophets proclaimed the glory of God and pronounced God’s blessing on the newly crowned king. Isaiah describes the new king as a child given from…