Communication Builds Our Community

Articles written by Christian Ponder


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  • A Path to Returning

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Aug 29, 2021

    Circumstances, challenges, drifting, distractions, perfectionism, and fear of criticism sometimes lead us off the path on which we were. If that path truly was what God intended for us, and still has for us, we would be wise to just get back on the path while we have opportunity to do so. We will likely not be perfect at doing the things we are called to, and we will almost certainly encounter challenges, distractions, and criticism from others. We may feel we are not...

  • The Numbers 13 and 14

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Apr 8, 2021

    Many times life here and now is challenging for us and extremely challenging for many others. We can easily feel overwhelmed by our personal and community circumstances when we look at how our goals can be accomplished using only "our" resources, physical strength, intellectualism, craftiness, or our ability to manipulate others. When we fail to see what God can do when we truly and continually line ourselves up with His will for our lives, we can get depressed that there are...

  • Direction

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Feb 11, 2021

    Circumstances in life are hard to navigate through at times. One of the many things to be appreciated about The Bible is that it is practical and instructive in many places, especially in light of what we perceive to be confusing and challenging times. Below are some passages I have found worth reviewing and comforting to regain perspective as we navigate through life. May God grant us more of His wisdom through His Word in 2021. Romans 12:9-19 – Let love be genuine. Abhor w...

  • 5 Psalms a Day Helps Keep the Adversary Away

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Do you have a busy life with many responsibilities? Are you feeling frustrated, tired, and beaten down by the "new normal" of COVID-19, work (or unemployment), kids' eLearning, personal health issues, a relative in ill-heath, talk of hurricanes, rhetoric in the 2020 political season, the media, social media, adolescents, a broken down vehicle, etc, etc, etc? Ponder this advice someone reminded me (a busy person, a recovering legalist, and someone who likes math) of recently....

  • Taking Sides

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Trump or Biden? Mask or no mask? Open school or eLearning? Open the economy, or public safety? Work or family? Push through and get it done, or pull back and reflect? Make a splash, or keep a low profile? Prove your point, or stay out of it? Conspiracy theories, or Occam's razor? Grace and mercy, or truth? Ephesians 5:19-21, or Ephesians 5:22-24? Cut the grass, or clean the garage? Has the pandemic and less physical interaction with people caused you to think that everything...

  • Reading to Challenge Our Thinking

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Are we reading words that genuinely challenge our current thinking? Do we read books, blogs, posts, and news feeds that only tend to be in line with our world experiences? Are we drawn to read organized printed thoughts (which are likely edited for maximum impact) that really only infuriate us to the point of more solidly reaffirming our preconceived world view? We are blessed to have the ability to actually read and comprehend meaning in printed symbols. There is so much...

  • Proverbs 30 in 2020

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    As the events around of COVID-19 continue to unfold and test our human and societal frailties and brokenness, I have been pondering many verses from Proverbs 30. May these words from God, penned many years ago by someone named Agur, be Humbling, Encouraging, Lasting, or Priming for all of us (author included) in these days. 1The man declares, I am weary, O God; I am weary, O God, and worn out. 2 Surely I am too stupid to be a man. I have not the understanding of a man. 3 I...

  • Sins of Omission

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Forgive me Father, for the many times I have not done what You have placed on my heart to do. There were things that I perceived were right to pursue, but out of inconvenience, discomfort, tradition, distraction, fear, or procrastination I did not pursue them. There are many times, when we are confronted with a difficult situation that we run from it, preferring not to "rock the boat" or not face criticism from others. Let us act in accordance with God's will for where and...

  • No Masking the Importance

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    In times of injustice, sickness, turmoil, and fear, where should we turn? Why should we turn there? Here are some instructions we should heed from Paul: 1 Thessalonians 5:17-22: Pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil. (ESV) 1 Timothy 2:1,8: First of all, then, I urge that...

  • We ALL Need Help

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Have you watched the news lately; or checked Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, or other "media" outlets recently? James 3:6-8: And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full...

  • Having a HEART for Children in our LAND

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    The current health crisis has noticeably altered many of our ideas of what, and who, is most important. Some of the things we would have listed as essential in order for us to have a "successful" life on March 1, may not have made our list here at the end of May. The perspective, words, and interactions we have with others has likely been altered by COVID-19. Upon further reading and reflecting on John 15:13 in recent weeks, (Greater love has no one than this, that someone...

  • Getting Back to the Basics

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Not having lived through a global pandemic, every day may seem fraught with more uncertainty. Here are some pieces of information regarding our present situation that I believe to be true: • Some people have gotten sick or died, and it is a small percentage of the population. • More people are in very serious need of daily food, monthly shelter, and steady employment. • Everyone has been inconvenienced at the very least, some much more inconvenienced than others. • We are mov...

  • A True Friend

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    There are times when acquaintances in our life provide a timely and caring prayer or action of encouragement that reminds us to keep going, to persevere in where we are or the direction we are moving. There are times when companions in our life provide a necessary rebuke or message for us to straighten up, remember the bigger picture, and get on to where we need to be. There are also times when certain people just give us their silent presence and complete attention in a...

  • Who Are We Trying to Impress?

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    "Look at me." "I did this." "He is not as good as me." "She is bad, and I deserve your attention." While phrases along these lines are most often uttered by young children (or politicians in Washington D.C.), we all struggle to some degree with jealously and envy in every sphere of our lives. Contentment is tough. Personally, I realize more and more every day, every hour even, that I need divine help, grace, and protection from erronously striving for recognition from others,...

  • Searching for Truth among Agendas and Perspectives

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    We are constantly bombarded with pieces of information (verbal and nonverbal) from news reports, children, neighbors, employers, employees, government, churches, parents, marketing companies, and many others. For each of us, how we observe the world around us depends on the quantity and specific providers of the information we choose to consume throughout our waking hours. The specific media platforms which we tune in, people with whom we socialize, and establishments we...

  • We are NOT in Control

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    As severe thunderstorms are rolling through Lake Wales this morning, I am reminded that we are truly at God's mercy, and He sustains us. It can be frustrating to plan our day, our week, our job search, our special event, our retirement, our funerals, etc; only to have things like ailments, illnesses, flat tires, weather, power/wi-fi outages, other people, newly discovered home repair needs, company layoffs, or world-wide pandemics upset our plan. Personally, I have attempted...

  • Life is Different Now in Lake Wales (Understatement of the Year)

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Life in Lake Wales has changed dramatically since early March 2020. Many more people are now truly struggling with making ends meet financially. More people are battling with mental and physical health challenges. Many non-retirees are inconvenienced with the new way of children "going" to school, and "going" to our job (if we are fortunate to still have employment). Many retirees are inconvenienced with getting around stores, or the new methods for getting medicine....

  • Be Encouraged

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Whether it is the half-anniversary of when the pandemic shutdowns began in full in Lake Wales, the 19th anniversary of September 11th, or listening to the rhetoric with being less than two months from "the most important election in our lifetime," or all of these and much more, life may seem scary and unprecedented these days to some. To the majority of others in the world (and even people in Lake Wales) daily life was extremely challenging before the pandemic, actually...

  • 20 Good Verses [Even in 2020]

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Few of us over the age of four living in the United States, and indeed most of the whole world, will likely ever forget many of the unique events we encountered this year. We do remember that people have faced tough challenges before 2020, and challenges will certainly exist for many people after 2020. Below are some verses that we would do well to ponder [even in 2020]. May God grant us His blessings in this season and the seasons to come. Proverbs 3:5 – Trust in the LORD w...

  • Seeking Right Things

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    How should we spend our limited time and energy? Which opportunities (no matter how small) do we need to pursue with our whole heart, and which opportunities (no matter how big) should we respectfully decline? When is a thing "right" to seek after, given the unique positions, talents, and gifts God has bestowed on us in this specific point of our lives? When we are tired, frustrated, confused, angry, and wondering if a thing should be pursued, here some passages worth...

  • Four of Fours for 2020

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    This is 2020. This is early November in the United States of America. No original collection of words created by me, here and now, can create any more value for our collective benefit. I am grateful for the ability to read and the ability to remember His words. May we all (author chief among us) ponder these words in the days ahead: Ephesians 4:25-32 – Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members one of another...

  • 1,000 Minutes

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Over the course of my life, I have heard many people say something along the lines of "time flies." The older I get, the faster time does seem to "fly by." For the sake of my young readers, I am not speaking literally. Why does that seem to be true? In pondering the idea of the perceived speed of 'time', I remember two of the responses people gave me to an implied rhetorical question: "We acquire more responsibilities, the older we get," and "We realize how much time we have...

  • Overcoming Discouragement

    Christian Ponder, Contributing Writer|Updated Jan 10, 2021

    Today, my grandmother turns 92 years old. Since 1928, she has certainly experienced many changes throughout her life in the United States. I am thankful to God for still having this woman in my life. She continues to pray for and encourage me regardless of the present temporary circumstances I am facing, or that she is facing. The Word holds true amidst world wars, great depressions, global pandemics, political turmoil, natural disasters, seismic technological changes, the...

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