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 By Erik Sietsema    Opinion    April 18, 2018 

Patching Cracks

During Easter weekend, my wife planned a short trip away for our family. We traveled out to a hot springs resort, with the intent of staying for a day. Our stay was pleasant, but when it came time to drive home, we only got a few miles down the road...

 
 By Erik Sietsema    Opinion    April 4, 2018

Patching Cracks

Like many others around the country, I have spent the last week complaining about the time change and the havoc it wreaks on my natural living rhythms. I tend to wake up at the same time every day, and I get tired about the same time regardless of...

 

My Answer

Q: My faith today is probably about where it was 10 years ago—not much stronger, not much weaker. I know I ought to be a better Christian, but I don’t know how. What would you say to me? A: Just as children are meant to grow and become adults,...

 

Patching Cracks

A few weeks ago, I made a peanut butter sandwich for my son for lunch. He took his sandwich with him to his room, where he ate and played. Because he’s a typical four year old, it didn’t take long before he forgot about the sandwich and wandered...

 

Patching Cracks

Parenting two small children has afforded me a terrific opportunity to watch them and learn about human nature. I have noticed that my kids are happiest in their time together when they play without regard for who gets what, who has to clean up...

 

My Answer

Q: Where do evil thoughts and ideas come from? Does the devil put them in our minds? I’d hate for anyone to know what’s actually going through my mind sometimes. A: One of the Bible’s greatest truths is that God knows all about us—including...

 

My Answer

Q: Mr. Graham, how would you like to be remembered? A: Editor’s note: Before his death, Billy Graham approved the following response as his final My Answer column. Mr. Graham’s column will continue in some form. I hope I will be remembered as...

 

Patching Cracks

Third John is the shortest book in the New Testament. It is also one of the least appreciated. John’s short letter (only 129 words) written to a church leader somewhere in Greece. Though we don’t know the exact situation being addressed in the...

 

My Answer

Q: I’ve done it again—I’ve already broken every New Year’s resolution I made for this year. Every year I start out determined to keep my resolutions, but before I know it I’ve failed. Maybe I shouldn’t bother. Why do I do this? What’s...

 

Patching Cracks

One of the most frequent complaints I encounter in pastoral counseling settings is the feeling that folks just don’t have their lives together. They aren’t doing well as a spouse, parent, homeowner, employee, etc. It’s typically the case that...

 

My Answer

Q: I don’t see how anyone can be a scientist and still believe in God. Why believe in God, when science can explain everything that happens? I’m in high school, and I hope to major in medical research when I get to college. A: Your interest in...

 

Patching Cracks

While I was in Jerusalem, I had the opportunity to visit the Mount of Olives. Many folks will recognize the name from the story of Jesus’ final week in Jerusalem and his arrest. During his very busy week of teaching in the capital city, he was...

 

My Answer

Q: My faith today is probably about where it was 10 years ago—not much stronger, not much weaker. I know I ought to be a better Christian, but I don’t know how. What would you say to me? A: Just as children are meant to grow and become adults,...

 

Patching Cracks

This morning, I ate my breakfast on the shore of the Sea of Galilee. I’ve been in Israel and Jordan for 2 weeks and the most impressive site I’ve visited thus far is a rocky stretch of beach a few hundred yards from the ruins of the ancient city...

 

Patching Cracks

I am sitting in a hotel in Jerusalem this morning, day 4 of a two-week educational tour of Israel and the surrounding country. Yesterday, we toured the original city of Jerusalem, when it was first conquered by David. I hand always envisioned a...

 

My Answer

Q: A new family just moved in near us, and they apparently have a physically handicapped son who requires much care. We’ve barely met them, but should we offer to help them somehow? We don’t want to embarrass them or be nosey, but we want to be...

 

Patching Cracks

With the new year upon us, it’s time to decide if setting goals for the new year is a worthwhile effort. Many people I know see the new calendar year as an opportunity to start over or remake themselves or an area of their life that they’re...

 

Bear Paw Meanderings

I have given this recipe for scalloped potatoes to many people. Most of them have raved about it. I cooked it for Christmas Day and proclaimed it to be the best scalloped potatoes I have ever eaten. Part of it is the fact that it has plenty of ham...

 

My Answer

Q: I’ve decided I’m not going to make any New Year’s resolutions this year. I’ve always made a long list of changes I plan to make in my life, but then I never keep them, and I just end up feeling guilty. So why bother?. A: I suspect many...

 

Patching Cracks

Every morning, while I walk the 2 blocks from my house to my office, I try to make it a point to stop and take a moment to look at the Bears Paw Mountains from the end of my driveway. They never fail to impress me. One of the things I fell in love...

 

My Answer

Q: Where did the wise men come from, and how did they know that the star they were following would lead them to Jesus? And did they ride camels? I am 10 years old, and I’ve always wondered about them. A: The Bible doesn’t tell us exactly where...

 

Patching Cracks

When I was in school, I was a poor student all the way up until I went to seminary, where I was a straight ‘A’ student for the first 3 years. It started as a point of pride for me, then it became a challenge to maintain it, and finally it made me...

 

My Answer

Q: I have an aggressive form of cancer, and the doctors have told me this will be my last Christmas. I feel so sad, especially when I think about not seeing my grandchildren grow up. What would you say to someone in my situation? A: The most...

 

Patching Cracks

This week, as a homework assignment for a class my wife and I are taking at church, we have had to spend time talking on the couch every day and go out on a date. I alluded to the challenges associated with the assignment in an earlier column, but I...

 

My Answer

Q: I grew up in a religious home, but I rebelled against all that, and I suppose you could say I’ve been living like the devil ever since. I know I’m on a dead-end road, but I don’t think I can do anything about it. Has God given up on me? A:...

 

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