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Bible Study 12: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, August 6 2020

When has God come to you in an unexpected way? Have you heard of “synesthesia”? It’s an experience in which one type of stimulation creates the sensation of another, such as when the hearing of a sound results in the seeing of a color. For example, when a woman with synesthesia hears a truck backing up, making a “beep-beep” sound, she sees the bee...

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Bible Study 11: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, August 3 2020

Listen to the Teacher What helps you to accept the guidance of an instructor? Ecclesiastes is a wisdom book which contains the words of “the Teacher,” an insightful man who “constantly taught the people knowledge” (Ecclesiastes 12:9). Among his many proverbs and truthful words were the instructions, “Worship God and keep God’s commandments.” (verse...

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Bible Study 10: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 30 2020

In times of senseless violence, where do you go for understanding? What happened at Virginia Tech in April 2007 was a horror: An undergraduate went on a shooting rampage, killing 32 and wounding 17. Seven young people from FPC were students there, and fortunately they all escaped injury. But emotional and spiritual wounds go very deep, and their...

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Bible Study 9: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 27 2020

When have you turned yourself over to a Higher Power, and what was the result? One of the most well-known modern prayers is the Serenity Prayer, said first by Protestant theologian Reinhold Niebuhr during World War II. It is now central to the recovery from addiction being achieved in thousands of 12-step groups: “God grant me the serenity to acc...

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Bible Study 8: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 23 2020

In a time of terrible trouble, what have you asked God to do for you? Threshold Choirs are groups that sing at the bedsides of seriously ill people, many of whom are in the final stages of life. In groups of two or three, members of these choirs sing in homes, hospitals and hospices, offering songs and hymns ranging from “Ave Maria” to “Swing Low...

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Bible Study 7: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 20 2020

When have you been in a situation in which you were not able to speak? In the movie The Grapes of Wrath, the Joad family stands reverently around an open grave. Tom Joad makes a request of another man, “Casy, won’t you say a few words?” Casy says, “I ain’t no more a preacher, you know.”

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Bible Study 6: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 16 2020

What challenges you to push ahead with patient resolve and steadfastness? The October weather was cool and clear, perfect for running the Chicago Marathon. The early morning sun reflected off the city’s skyscrapers, and 40,000 marathoners converged on a park next to Lake Michigan.

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Bible Study 5: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 13 2020

Justice Delayed When have you learned more from the consequences of your actions than the judgment of others? When Nancy and I were raising our children, one of our parenting techniques was “logical consequences.” That meant that if our son made a mess of his room, he would have to live in the clutter until he picked it up himself. If our daughter...

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Bible Study 4: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 9 2020

Watching for a Sign Where do you see signs of God’s work in the world? FPC has been discussing race and racism for years, mostly through adult classes and book discussions. But a video is worth a thousand words, as we discovered when a white woman called the cops on a black man and told them that an “African-American man” was “recording me and thre...

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Bible Study 3: Waiting

by Henry Brinton, July 6 2020

Sailing to a New Land How do you know that you are heading in the right direction? My father was a NASA physicist, so I went to Duke University assuming that I should be a scientist. I took biology classes and got decent grades, although I didn’t find a lot of joy in the work. I was rowing, not sailing.

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