For Those That Follow

Ardella Perry

READ : Philippians 2:1-8 In 1985 when I wrote this poem, I was keenly aware of how my actions affect my son Malcolm. Now much later as a grandmother, I recognize that our entire lives will impact those who follow us. This life I live is not for me To heap things on myself, To fulfill “I wants” in selfish greed Until there’s nothing left. Though many others obtain their “dreams,” I can not measure my life by theirs. This …

Who Am I?

Ardella Perry

READ : Ruth 1:1-22 Three distinct personalities of women appear in this text. Each personality could be a type of Christian. The “Naomites.” Naomi has a low threshold for pain. She had been happy, but now that her husband and sons are dead, Naomi is bitter and gives up on life. She also speaks discouragingly to the younger women. At this point, Naomi exemplifies the Christians who blame God for misfortunes, lash out at God bitterly, and wonder why God …

Using the Wrong Key

Ardella Perry

READ : 2 Corinthians 10:7-12 It has happened any number of times in my rush to get papers graded and returned. Halfway through a paper, I wonder why a student’s answers are all wrong. A quick check of the teacher’s answer key shows that I’m on the wrong page. I have even made the mistake of checking the key instead of the student’s paper. But I never get too far before realizing something is wrong. When Paul says people are …

X-Rated

Ardella Perry

READ : Ezekiel 16:1-15 Ezekiel is very up-front with his descriptions and leaves very little to the imagination. Teachers would never write “more details, please,” or “use more metaphors” on any of Old Zeke’s essays. This guy is rough, but the truth usually is. Ezekiel points out that God has showered his love and grace upon Israel when no one else would have her. He’d given her life, blessed her, clothed her with the best, and made a special covenant …

Child, Would You Be Still?

Ardella Perry

READ : Psalm 46:1-11 Mama is trying to comb through my tangled hair so she can press it. I keep pulling away. “Child, would you be still?” She’s working to get a splinter out of my hand so I can go back outside and play. I keep crying and pulling back my hand. “Child, would you be still?” Daddy’s trying to get that photo just right for the scrapbook. I keep fidgeting and fussing. “Child, would you be still?” The …

This I Will Do For You

Ardella Perry

READ : 2 Corinthians 8:3-5 The Discipleship Journal once challenged its readers to begin covenanting with others to help them in their walk with the Lord. I created the following covenant to help clarify mentoring relationships and keep them focused. I will recognize that you have worth because you are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26, 27). I will accept you as a fellow Christian (Philemon 10-12, 16; 2 Corinthians 5:17). I will pray for you (1 Samuel …