In Something More, we look at stories, poems, scripture, and this beautiful, crazy world we live in as a challenge and an invitation to live an abundant life. If you like the content but think you'd rather listen to it than read about it, check out the Something More podcast at the links below. New content is released every Tuesday.

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Post 43: You Renew

"...I begin with recognition of the world declaring who God is. This is not relational; it is simply fact. I end with my own recognition of the delight of relationship with my maker. Where I started by hearing his praise, I end by participating in it. And I recognize that he took the doubt and grief I brought and renewed me with faith and joy. Though the days of hardship have been long and still continue, I end with the expression of trust that faith and joy will be mine in Christ forever..."

Posted 6/18/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 42: The Garden of the Soul

"...This is gardening at its finest – placing a seed in the ground that can be as tiny as a carrot seed and watching it sprout out of the ground and grow greenly upward toward the light...And in time, those tiny seeds become flourishing plants which produce fruit to scatter more seeds. / Isn’t this what heaven is about too?..."

Posted 6/11/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 41: Peace

"...At the eyewall, we know. We know that the storm will destroy us, and we don’t want to be destroyed. But our vision is too obscured to even know if there is a way of escape. And then, there is the eye. There is God. There is peace. When we come to the end of ourselves, we have reached the eyewall. We know there is no answer in ourselves, and we know that we want the answer. And even if a part within us it tempted to go back, we no longer can. But oh, the joy of this truth: the eye has found us!..."

Posted 6/4/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 40: Munificinth

"...Being mice, the natural timidity of the Sleeks and the Softs for quite a few generations prevented them from interacting with one another at all. Their paths would cross from time to time, but they would scurry off in opposite directions without speaking, or the one would covertly watch the other from the seclusion of the nearest plant. / However, one day that all changed when Roger, a Sleek, spoke to Freddy, a Soft..."

Posted 5/28/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 39: My Vindication

"...This is specifically what I want my vindication to look like. Ten, twenty, thirty, forty years from now, I want the person I have become and the life that I live to show clearly that listening to God’s voice is truly best, that the riches of his glory far exceed the riches that have a dollar sign attached to them..."

Posted 5/21/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 38: Asymptotic

"...[T]wo hundred fifty years after Newton posited the concept of universal gravitation, Einstein said he was wrong...Objects aren’t attracting other objects by their mass. Their mass is bending the fabric of time and space, and this distortion causes other objects to travel towards them...This begs the question of whether space literally has a fabric to it, and scientists are currently trying to figure that out...What if the invisible fabric of the universe is God?..."

Posted 5/14/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 37: Daffodils and Spring

"...You know how some people just carry light with them? Mom was one of those people. I could list off a whole string of positive adjectives for her without considering myself to be at all exaggerating, but “bright” just might be my favorite. And that’s not so much because she was a smarty pants – though believe me, she was! It’s because her brisk energy and optimism for the future were glowing. And the light of Christ shone through her in a way that made the gospel look like good news indeed..."

Posted 5/7/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 36: To Fear or Not to Fear

"...I want to start by saying that holding on to both fear of God and casting out fear is not holding on to legalism and licentiousness. It is letting go of them both for something infinitely better...What then is this better way, and what does it look like?..."

Posted 4/30/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 35: Upheld

"...I want you to know more deeply than you know anything else that God absolutely loves you. He doesn't love you for anything you have done, save trusting in Christ. You can't diminish his love by falling short of his glory. He knows that change takes time, and unlike us, he knows exactly how long the change will take. He wants our obedience today, and he's not judging us today for last year's mistakes..."

Posted 4/23/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 34: Heartbeat of a Lamb

"...What do I mean by saying, “Life forever calling”?...Life itself has a certain appeal...But abundant life calls out with a promise of life being worth living. The richness and beauty of abundant life is alluring. This is the sound of the heartbeat of a lamb..."

Posted 4/16/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 33: Redeem Us

"...So, right now, we all groan with all of creation, longing for a day of re-creation. We are waiting for Jesus to open the scroll and claim back this earth...Jesus paid the title price for the earth and all the people it contains with his blood upon the cross. God the Father, the true owner of this earth, still holds the title. Satan only acts as a tenant for life until Jesus opens the scroll and inherits his kingdom..."

Posted 4/9/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 32: Eternity's Hourglass

"...I can see two fun directions to go in, and we’re going to explore them both: God as the creator of time and the history of the hourglass...Unlike the traditional hourglass which has a confined amount of sand within it, allowing you to watch its passage and estimate the time that remains, God’s timing is inscrutable..."

Posted 4/2/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 31: Grafted

"...The width and consistency of these bands can tell us about what the tree has experienced – seasons of drought or abundant resources; cold, harsh years or times of warmth; pests; overcrowding and not enough sun...Doesn’t it already sound like the human experience? We have seasons of faster growth and slower growth, influenced by the circumstances around us. Though drought and pests can slow our growth, we will keep growing if we keep receiving the spiritual sunshine of relationship with Christ..."

Posted 3/26/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 30: Oh, Honey!

"...Are you ready for a riddle? “Out of the eater came something to eat, And out of the strong came something sweet”(Judges 14:14). Any ideas?...Today, we’re going to take a look at the marvel that is honey. Where does it come from, what is it made of, and how is it used – both by bees and people?..."

Posted 3/19/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 29: The Name of God

"...In the Hebrew, Yahweh is written with just the consonants, YHWH – yod, he, vav, he. In 2016, I got to see Jason Gray perform live at the Waterfront Stadium in Grand Haven, Michigan, and he talked about the story behind his song, “The Sound of Our Breathing.” He was inspired to write it after learning that each of the letters was an aspirated consonant, pronounced with an exhalation of breath. Like all the rest of creation, we are all crying out to God even when we don’t consciously realize it..."

Posted 3/12/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 28: Sweater Weather

"...If you’re wearing a knit shirt right now, you already have a great learning prop handy. Preferably, it would be a sweater because the coarser the fabric, the easier the knit stitches will be to see. So, if you’re looking down at your shirt now, you can see on the outside that the fabric consists of columns of many little Vs of thread or yarn. Now look at the backside of the fabric – the inside of your shirt. You’ll notice there are many little bumps instead of Vs. You’re looking at the effect of knitting and purling..."

Posted 3/5/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 27: Deliberate Love

"...Have you ever decided to do something sacrificial and noble but had to wait a while for the right time? I find that can sometimes be harder than an immediate sacrifice. An immediate sacrifice doesn’t give me time to overthink and reconsider. But if I have time to ponder, I also have time to potentially reason myself out of it or lose my resolve or courage. God didn’t have that problem..."

Posted 2/27/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 26: Light My Fire

"...I don’t want to just be a single candle flickering dimly in the darkness. I want to be a bonfire heaped so high that the neighbors are wondering whether they should call the fire department..."

Posted 2/20/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 25: Hold This Promise

"...I wrote “Hold This Promise” for Grandma to assure her that in every season, my love for her was unchanging. But as I read over it today, I see in it the bigger truth of God’s steady love for us. In every season – with the stormy summer raindrops, the rustling autumn leaves, the softly falling snow, and the fresh growth of spring – he is providing for us, caring for us, showering down his love. His creation is declaring his faithfulness and care. And Christ himself is interceding for me with the Father..."

Posted 2/13/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 24: Snorg 'n' Flork

"...Seconds later, Snorg heard Frank yelling out, “No! Get away from him!” and Snorg popped his head out to see Berg frantically pulling at his reins, trying to escape a dragon slightly shorter and slimmer than Snorg. She had shiny magenta scales and a purple ridge running along her crown and down her neck, the color of which matched her elegant wings, and was just then reared back with flames building in her throat. Frank had seen Snorg lighting the forge enough times to know exactly what was going on, and Snorg understood the situation at a glance. He made a flying, swooping leap and landed directly between Berg and the dragon, his blue wings spread wide to fully shield the horse from the blast that he had landed just in time to stop..."

Posted 2/6/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 23: Peace within My Soul

"...When I wrote “Peace within My Soul”, I wasn’t giving up the pressure to chase this HICS greatness. That’s never felt much like pressure – a calling I take seriously but not pressure. And anyway, it’s easier to chase that kind of greatness when you’re surrounded by people following Christ who love you. But the pressure to chase an arbitrary standard of worldly greatness fell away. I was satisfied in the love of those I loved..."

Posted 1/30/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 22: You Carve Beauty

"...The love of God does not merely patch souls but carves them into beautiful masterpieces, intricate, strong, and deep. And one day, the sorrow and loss and regret that can haunt us in this life will be overwhelmed in glorious delight where all has been made right and there is no longer need of sun or moon or stars, for the glory of God will illuminate our world..."

Posted 1/23/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 21: Beneath the Leaves

"...If ever you’ve raked back leaves or pine needles to reveal the damp soil beneath and create more space for new things to grow, perhaps you’ve felt that satisfaction of working alongside our Maker to cultivate the garden he created..."

Posted 1/16/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 20: Days of Gladness

"...And I don’t believe that God’s primary goal for us is our happiness. He has bigger plans than that. But in this moment of clearer thought, it seems like a stupid question to ask God if he delights to give sweet gifts. Because I see all the time that he does..."

Posted 1/9/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 19: Schmeffle the Ratter

"...But then all the spirit of Latrell the Mouser filled his being and he knew at once precisely what he must do. He would rescue this distressed damsel and seek her paw in catrimony!..."

Posted 1/2/24 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 18: The Prayer of Jeremiah

"...I often lament that I don’t get to audibly hear God’s voice, and having that desire in my heart to hear God speak, I am so grateful for passages like this where another of God’s children speaks words which are so close to my own and then hears God’s reply, which I now get to read as well..."

Posted 12/26/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 17: Restlessly Running

"...I haven’t perfectly mastered the art of not being restless. There are still times I’m not so good at trusting in the process, and I try to run in three different directions at just about the same time and as you would expect, get nowhere in the process. Fortunately, God is gracious towards me and continues to steer me into the right path even after I trip myself up along the way..."

Posted 12/19/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 16: Safeguard

"...'Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you.'...As I meditated on this verse, I was pondering how when I am encouraged in rejoicing in the goodness of my God, I am guarded from sin. So often, when I fall into sin, it has its roots in a lack of joy - discontentment, loneliness, frustration, impatience. But when I rejoice in God, he is my contentment, companion, peace, patience..."

Posted 12/12/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 15: Upon the Rock

"...Those many waters were calling me upward, literally, the promise of more waterfalls to be seen beckoning me to climb higher. At the same time, I was recognizing that when I hear the voice of God, he is always calling me upward. Calling me to fix my eyes upon him, calling me to draw nearer to him, calling me to a higher standard in how I live my life..."

Posted 12/5/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 14: Like a Child

"...From my limited but ongoing contact with young children throughout my life, I’ve always taken the idea of coming with childlike faith to mean believing simplistically that God is and that he is good and that he is trustworthy. But that has taken on a new meaning for me in these last few years as I’ve gotten to be a part of the life of the little girl of one of my dearest friends..."

Posted 11/28/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 13: Abundance

"...In Genesis 2:17, where God warns Adam, “but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die,” the Hebrew word translated as “die” actually means “dying you will die”. God wasn’t telling Adam instant death would follow. He was telling him he would be choosing the path of death. I like to think of abundant life as living you will live, walking in the path that leads to life..."

Posted 11/21/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 12: The Way of Discipline

"...Think about it this way: let’s say you wanted to become a wild animal tamer. The excitement and variety appeal to you. But you’re not sure you can actually control a hippo or a lion or an ostrich. But then you tame the hippo. Alright, that lion isn’t as a big as a hippo. You square up to the lion, and soon it’s purring under your hand. At this point, the ostrich is hardly a big deal at all...Discipline begets discipline..."

Posted 11/14/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 11: Tongues of Fire

"...This is a poem that is all about the voice of God speaking and the light that is his very nature, which burns away the darkness, which burns away the dross, which lights my path when I trust in him and his promises..."

Posted 11/7/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 10: Lake of the Clouds

"...so that’s when my crazy, adventurous side came up with the notion that we could follow the lake around to the other side of the river and take the river back to where it met up with the trail. Following the water, there shouldn’t be any way for us to get lost..."

Posted 10/31/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 9: Steadfast

"...That day, what I saw was looking into the eyes of Jesus and being known in all that I am. And the thing that took my breath away was that there was no shame, not because I was unconscious of the gravity of my sin but because of the fathomlessly deep, compassionate love of Christ. I was known! In my weakness, failure, selfishness, I was known. And yet, I was loved!..."

Posted 10/24/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 8: Planted

"...There you see not only a beautifully shaped, lusciously green tree spreading its branches towards the sky, but also the deep and intricately vast network of roots which support the foliage. This is me – the roots of my soul entwined with the person, character, and identity of Christ so that the branches of my life display and exalt his glory..."

Posted 10/17/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 7: Got Chemistry?

"...I’m not going to get into Einstein’s theories on relativity, but suffice to say, unless my sweetheart and I reach catastrophic levels of corpulence – or maybe get hit by a really high dose of Marvel gamma rays – gravity’s not going to be the thing drawing us together. How about a chemical bond? Oh, yes, I went there. 'An instinctual, apparently unanalysable, attraction or affinity.' That kind of chemistry..."

Posted 10/10/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 6: Safe to Confide

"...If this is what God’s love looks like – a love that invites the beloved to share openly and completely and shoulders burdens out of a desire to help us towards his very best, what he has made us for – isn’t that what our love should like as well?..."

Posted 10/3/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 5: Outside Time

"...A time is coming when time will no longer bind us. And when we exist in that reality, we’ll finally understand just how fleeting this life was. We’ll be convinced in a way we can only play at right now that the glory which will then have already been revealed to us squelches our present sufferings like the insignificant things they are..."

Posted 9/26/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 4: Frank 'n' Snorg

"...But Miss Süsser was less disposed to think so. 'You can’t kill the dragon! It’s not like he’s out rampaging. If you have to hunt him out in his dragon house, he can’t deserve to die.' Frank shrugged. 'That’s how it’s often done nowadays. And just think if the sketchalotsee were there.'..."

Posted 9/19/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 3: Truffle Kerfuffle

"...As you step in, you spy a glass case with two levels of beautiful bon-bons. Each tray has dark brown squares of glossy chocolate, decorated colorfully according to flavor – fruits, spices, caramels, creams, wines, teas – a striking array of unique and tantalizing tastes..."

Posted 9/12/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 2: My Faithful Father

"...Here’s the thing, though. Even when in my humanity I am too blind and disheartened to properly rejoice in the truth, God pours out gracious, generous love continuously..."

Posted 9/12/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Post 1: Something More

"...This is a challenge and an invitation to live an abundant life, to believe that there is a God and that he is good and worthy of worship, that people have souls and are worth investing in, and that we are meant to work alongside God in cultivating a world that exhibits his glory..."

Posted 9/12/23 - Click to expand and read the full post

Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
www.Lockman.org

Copyright © 2023             Andrea Paul. All rights reserved.