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Archive By Author - Jonathan E. Scharf


Grace Notes: loving our neighbors

I think you'd be hard-pressed to find a word in the English language that is more overused and a concept that is more underused than "love."

October 17, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Study Bible for money 'secrets'

When's the last time you've felt excited about giving an offering at church - I mean really excited? If you've been reading this column for the past month, you might remember that when I was in Nigeria, I wrote about how excited the Nigerians got about "offering time!" with the dancing and music accompanying the bringing of their gifts, spending at least an hour of their service giving their monetary offerings.

October 10, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Scharf: Showing how to live thankfully

Greetings from Nigeria. Of course, by the time you read this one, I should have made it back already, God willing.

September 19, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Scharf: A teacher learns from pupils

I write this as I sit in the mission house after my first day of teaching at Christ the King Lutheran Seminary in Uruk Uso, Nigeria. By mission house, I mean the home built for the American missionaries our church body used to send here to work among the Nigerians sharing the Gospel. That started 78 years ago.

September 12, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Nigerian believers sing God’s praises

Wow! That's all I can say. I'm writing this on Sunday night after experiencing something I won't be able to adequately convey in words. A couple of days ago, I wrote to you from our secure hotel in Lagos, Nigeria, the big city of 20 million, home of Nigeria's biggest airport - the one I flew into. Today, I write from a world as far from that as Lagos is from Covington.

September 05, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Redeeming the time in Nigeria

Have you ever thought about foreign mission work? Could you do it? Last week, I wrote about redeeming the time - making the most of every moment of every day. So how's this for redeeming the time? As you read this, God willing, I'm in Nigeria teaching at our Lutheran Seminary there.

August 29, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Depression's cure is in still, small voice

Last week, we started talking about depression by looking at the prophet Elijah in 1 Kings 19. If you missed that, you can find it under "sermons" at www.abidinggrace.com. We looked at noticing the signs of depression and seeing the dangers of those tell-tale signs, from focusing on feelings instead of facts, to taking responsibility for things you're not responsible for, to withdrawing to "be alone." We focused a lot on the problem of depression. This week, let's see the solution.

August 15, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


We've been sent with a message

Ten years ago, I was installed as the pastor of Abiding Grace. Now, it doesn't seem like it was that long ago, but I guess the calendar doesn't lie. So, when we come to milestones like this, it makes sense to think again about what we're doing and to ask if it is what we hoped for. Is this working out?

August 01, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Scharf: The beginning of wisdom

Wisdom…sounds good doesn't it? You want to be wise, don't you? So how do you get there?

July 25, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Seeing through the eyes of faith - God’s gift to all

Crucifixion. Stabbing. Stoning. Flaying. Beheading.

July 18, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


God’s strength makes us all heroes

It's the kind of person who can do anything, right?

July 04, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Religion is relationship, not rules

Why would anyone want to be a Christian? There are so many rules, right?

June 20, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Scharf: The gift of the spirit

This Sunday was Pentecost in the Church year - the day we mark what happened in Acts 2. If you aren't familiar - open up your Bible and read the story. Pentecost was really the kick-start to the New Testament Church - with miracles all over the place - the sound that filled the city, the flames of fire, the speaking in all those languages! Can you imagine being there? And it wasn't just the miracles; it was the message. The disciples were reaching so many different people in so many different languages. And the message, they had changed lives. Three thousand ...

May 23, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Scharf: That the world may know

Have you ever heard someone pray for you?

May 16, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


An ounce of mother

There's an old Spanish proverb: "An ounce of mother is worth a ton of priest." So, on this Mother's Day weekend, let's thank God for many ounces of godly mothers.

May 09, 2013 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


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