Pause

Stop.

Dial down the volume in your life. Breathe deeply, close your eyes, and listen.

Can you hear it, the still small voice?

You are not alone. God is near. The great I AM is with you — now and always.

Revel in God’s nearness.

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Listen

Bless God! He didn’t reject my prayer; he didn’t withhold his faithful love from me.

Psalm 66:20

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Think

There is something to be said for unconditional love. You know, the kind that is never withheld. When I was six years old I stole my brother’s penny collection. I’m talking about wheat ear pennies — the kind that had been minted in the early part of the 20th century. Today, a wheat ear penny can bring anywhere from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars in the coin market. My brother had over 100 wheat ear pennies, and I took them to buy a plastic water rocket.

I paid back the pennies with regular ones — the ones worth a penny. Neither my brother nor my parents held this against me. Sure, I felt bad, but I didn’t have to worry about their love.

I hope you have worldly relationships where you feel unconditional, faithful love. If not, you’ve got one with God. God does not withhold love. Remember, God is near.

Bill Ogletree

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Pray

God, thank you for never rejecting me, for never withholding your love. Help me to show unconditional love to others in my path. Amen.

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Go

I know who goes before me

I know who stands behind

The God of angel armies

Is always by my side

from “Whom Shall I Fear” by Chris Tomlin, 2013

Bill Ogletree

Bill Ogletree is a professor at Western Carolina University where he chairs the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. His professional interests center on the communication needs and abilities of people with intellectual disabilities. When not at work, Bill enjoys time with his wife and family, an assortment of pets, and a variety of stringed instruments.

Walking Towards Morning: The Love of God

Ken Medema

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