The Haven

The Haven

Sarah Ivill
Is it difficult for you to think about joy and suffering in the same sentence? Normally, when we are in the middle of suffering, we just want it to be over. Think of the woman who feels betrayed by her best friend, or the wife who feels betrayed by her husband. Consider the mother who longs for her...
When Paul wrote to the Philippians he was confined to prison, awaiting his hearing before Caesar (see Acts 23:11; 25:9-12; 26:32). Although he was chained to a soldier at all times, he was able to write letters, have visitors, and boldly proclaim the gospel (28:30-31). During this time Paul’s...
Do you ever feel insignificant, unnoticed, or like your words and works aren’t significant contributions? Have you ever thought, “Does anyone love me?” or “Does anyone even care where I am and what I am doing?” If so, you likely know what it’s like to trust in “a false hope for salvation” (Ps. 33:...
One of the most important things to maintain, yet one of the hardest, is peace with others. From the time we get up in the morning until the time we go to bed at night we have many opportunities to either be a peacemaker or a peace-taker. What we decide depends on our relationship with God. We are...
As I think about my church family, so many older and younger men and women, as well as covenant children, come to mind. I have come to know and love them, and pray for them often. Just like in families, there ’ s a lot that can happen in church families. Behavior isn ’ t always the best, and...
Are you in the middle of searing circumstances? Have you been searching for a source of sustenance in the midst of suffering? Do you need a safe shelter as you battle against sin? As you serve those around you, do you need strength? Psalm 18 reminds us that sustenance, shelter and strength are...
It’s easy to grow weary of proclaiming Christ, especially if it doesn’t seem to be making a difference in the lives of those we teach. We are prone to think that our toil is in vain if our children or spiritual children don’t seem to be maturing in Christ. Yet Colossians 1:24-29 teaches us that...
It is easy to set our minds on everything but heavenly things during the day. You might be tempted to replay the hard conversation you had with your friend repeatedly in your mind until you are overwhelmed. Your race for academic success or career advancement might be wearing you down. The behavior...
For many of us, the fall signals a new and busy season of ministry. This is often an exciting time, but if we’re not careful, we will be so busy that we will forget what is most important. We will be tempted, after experiencing God’s greatness, goodness, and grace, to not stop and celebrate it in...
One of the greatest gifts we can give others is a commitment to pray for them, a commitment that will also bring us great joy. But it’s easy to just pray through a list of petitions instead of first thanking God for their faith and fruitful ministry. Paul’s thanksgiving and prayer for the...