Lenten Devotional 3/24

​Good morning!  Our final devotional for this season of Lent comes to us from David Cooper!  I have no doubt that David is known to many of you – his great sense of humor, welcoming smile, deep sense of care and compassion, and genuine desire to be in relationship with those he comes in contact with each day, leave a lasting impression to say the least.  For those of you who maybe haven’t had the pleasure of meeting him and experiencing those wonderful gifts, Coop (as he is known by many) is the Associate Director of Residential Living, Housing & Residence Life here at TCU.  He really is an amazing man – you should get to know him.  As we discussed the possibility of him writing a devotional, I was impressed to learn about the deep significance that Lent has for him.  That’s exactly what he’s written about today.  I hope his words will prompt you to think about your own connection to Lent, and will inspire you to go deeper in your faith journey not only this week, but throughout the days, weeks, and months ahead.  Thank you for joining us and letting us be a part of your Lenten experience, and may you have a wonderful Easter weekend.

Blessings on your journey,


March 24, 2016                             By: David Cooper

Read Luke 15:11-32, The Parable of the Prodigal Son.


The Lent season has always been an interesting time for me.  As a child, it meant that I would get a nice basket of candy in about 40 days or so.  In my 20’s, it meant a trip to New Orleans to feast before the famine in true Mardi Gras style.  But the last 12 years, Lent has taken on a more powerful meaning for me – the concepts of love and forgiveness.

In my humble opinion, love is the most powerful emotion out there.  I have been blessed to be raised in a family environment that was grounded … in love from my parents, siblings, grandparents, and so on My father drove this point home by paying up to $500 for our dog at the veterinary clinic and when questioned by me, “Why would you spend so much on a dog that is 10 years old?”  His response was simple, “You take care of those you love.”  Simple, yet very powerful.

There finally came the moment when I met the love of my life, someone who could replace my mother on that metaphoric pedestal of greatness.  We courted for a year and then became engaged and started the wedding planning.  We had a goal in mind to marry before she graduated from veterinary school to help with basic things in life.  So we looked to the month of April.  The first few dates where shot down because of Lent.  We were able to secure the first Saturday after Easter – which had to be at 9:30am due to the small Catholic Church in Monroe, Louisiana, already had two weddings booked for the same reason – no weddings during Lent season.

This was very powerful to me for the reason that it drove home the point that we should observe and truly pay respect during this season.  Even wanting to participate in a holy sacrament would have to wait as we observed Lent.  For me, it solidified that Lent should be spent preparing for Easter by participating in  a period of fasting, repentance, moderation and spiritual discipline. To set aside time for reflection on Jesus – specifically his suffering and his sacrifice, his life, death, burial and resurrection.  With the love that Jesus showed us in forty days, we could wait to start our life together.

Forgiveness is the second concept that comes to my mind during Lent.  The process of selecting a “Best Man” was pretty simple for me.  I have had many great friends in my life, but in different sections and time periods.  There has been one man who has always stood out to me for the entirety of my life: my father.  The only concern I had with him serving in this role was that he had not participated in church for over 30 years.

We had a nice conversation about this, and he agreed to go to confession.  We went together the Friday before the wedding date.  As we walked out to the car after confession, I made the joke that the rest of his day was shot with his penance.  “Over thirty years of not participating in the church – yup – let’s drop you off at the library or the house so you can get started.”  He looked at me and smiled with the wisdom he has always shown.  His penance was to read the Parable of the Prodigal Son and reflect on how this relates to his life.

He knew the basis of the parable, but he wanted to honor the commitment, so we went back to my house, and he read the scripture and reflected on it. Afterwards, we went to the park and played basketball and talked about how impactful his penance was.  It was a great moment for me as he shared his reflection on life, marriage, and how powerful confession was for him and his commitment to the church moving forward.  I am proud to say that in the 12 years since, he can count missing mass on one hand!  To me, this has blended the power of love and forgiveness in one time period – Lent – as Jesus accepted death to show his love for us and at the same time he asked God to forgive those who persecuted him.

God, we thank you for the gift of your love and forgiveness.  Help us to offer those same gifts to others each day.  Amen.

Lenten Devotional 3/22

Good morning!  I hope you are having a meaningful Holy Week and are finding the time to reflect on your spiritual journey this week.  To assist you with that, our Lenten devotional for today comes to us from Julia Zellers.  Julia is a Sophomore from Monument, Colorado, and she’s majoring in Political Science and Economics.  If Julia’s name sounds familiar it’s because she’s involved in a number of ways across campus.  She has served on staff for Frog Camp, been a Frogs First Leader, is a member of the  Chancellor’s Leadership Program, is a member of the sorority Kappa Kappa Gamma, is a member of the Honors Cabinet, serves as a resident assistant, is an active member of the TCU Catholic Community, and  this summer she will be welcoming the Class of 2020 as a TCU Orientation Leader.  And in the midst of all that (and more) she wrote me several months ago and asked if she could write a devotional for Lent.  I’m thankful for Julia, and those like her, who take time in the midst of busy schedules to reflect, write, and share what God is laying on their hearts.  I hope you’ll find her words for us today to be helpful in the midst of this Holy Week.  After you read Julia’s devotional, I invite you to offer a prayer for the people of Brussels and all those impacted by today’s tragedy.  I think you’ll find her concluding thought to be helpful as you pray.  In Your mercy, God, hear our prayer…

Blessings on your journey,


March 22, 2016                             By: Julia Zellers

Psalm 136:1-9

Praise the Lord, for he is good;

For his mercy endures forever;

Praise the God of gods;

For his mercy endures forever;


Who alone has done great wonders,

For his mercy endures forever;

Who skillfully made the heavens,

For his mercy endures forever;

Who spread the earth upon the waters,

For his mercy endures forever;

Who made the great lights,

For his mercy endures forever;

The sun to rule the day,

For his mercy endures forever;

The moon and stars to rule the night,

For his mercy endures forever.

In mass several weeks ago, Father Wilcox suggested reading Psalm 136 as a reminder of God’s mercy. I view Psalm 136 as a reminder to thank God and praise Him for He always loves us. This Lenten season, I decided to write a letter to God each night in my journal thanking Him for even the challenges in my life. When I read this scripture first, I remember to thank God in my prayers for the ground we walk on, the warmth from the sun, and the stars that light up the night; for without Him, those great wonders would never be.

Often times in our prayer, we spend time asking God to help us overcome challenges and help us fix problems, but I wanted to focus on turning my prayers into a conversation with God. And in that conversation I want to be thankful for His endless mercy for it helps me know that we can all face any hardship. This thought reminds me of another scripture, Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”  Sometimes prayer is hardest when we face loss, adversity, or uncertainty, but He is good and His mercy endures forever. FOREVER.

God, so thankful I am for Your endless love and mercy. May our circumstances and prayers help us grow into the people You want us to be. In the Lord’s name we pray, Amen.

Lenten Devotional 3/17

Good afternoon!  I hope you’re enjoying your St. Patrick’s Day, and more importantly, that you survived last night’s storm!  As your workday draws to a close, I want to encourage you to take a few minutes to read and reflect on our Lenten devotional for the day.  Our writer for today is Andrew Youngblood!  For those of you who might not know Andrew, he is our Senior Campus Minster for Chi Alpha.  If you’ve had the opportunity to meet Andrew and his wife Alicia, who is also a Campus Minister with Chi Alpha, then you’ve met two of the nicest people you’ll ever meet.  Seriously.  The kindness and compassion they extend to EVERYONE they come in contact with is the real thing.  I know this because I’ve been a fortunate recipient of it, and I’ve witnessed the power of that gift on the faces of others who have received it as well.  That deep and abiding love is made possible because of their deep love for God, and their desire to extend God’s love to others.  I knew that  Andrew would do a great job writing a devotional, and I’m so glad that I get to share his words with you now.  May they be a welcome companion for you today in your time of reflection.  Blessings on your journey…


P.S. – Congrats to Andrew and Alicia on the birth of their new son Asher!  So much love… J

March 17, 2016                     By: Andrew Youngblood

I love to examine the life of the apostle Peter in scripture. Perhaps it’s because I feel like I can identify with his failures and missteps, and his story gives me hope. In the gospels, Peter seems to say the wrong things at the wrong times, tries to correct Jesus and gets called “Satan”, falls asleep when he should be praying, and eventually abandons and denies Jesus after promising that he never would. Fortunately for Peter, and for us, that’s not where his story ends.

After all Peter had done wrong, we see in John chapter 21 that the resurrected Jesus reinstates Peter, and encourages him to follow him yet again. The fascinating this about this interaction is that we don’t see Jesus bringing up all of Peter’s failures and mistakes. He simply asks him if he loves him and invites him back into the work of a disciple.

I’m deeply encouraged by the fact that, through the death and resurrection of Jesus, we are not defined by our past mistakes. 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NLT) says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come.” Like Peter, our story from this day forward can be very different than the story of our past. Our identity can be rooted in Christ, who doesn’t hold our old life against us. He invites us to follow him into a new future full of purpose and promise. What hope we have in Jesus!

Lord, I ask you to help me see the hope that I have in you as we celebrate your sacrifice and resurrection in this season. Remind me that I am a “new creation” and that I owe my new identity to you. Let that realization inspire me to love and serve You and others more each day. Thank you for hearing my prayer. Amen.

Lenten Devotional 3/15

Good afternoon!  I hope you’re enjoying this amazing weather and beautiful day!  Our Lenten devotional for today was written by Mark Tentinger.  Mark is a Junior from La Vista, Nebraska, and he’s studying Mechanical Engineering at TCU.  I’ve recently gotten to know Mark through his leadership role as President of BYX, which is one of two Greek organizations that is also a Student Religious Organization on campus.  As I’ve gotten to know Mark this year, I’ve come to appreciate his calm and peaceful demeanor.  As I was brainstorming which students I wanted to invite to write a devotional this semester, I asked several students to recommend peers who they thought would do a great job.  More than once Mark’s name was mentioned, so I was excited to extend this opportunity to him and grateful when he agreed to write it.  After reading his devotional, I’m so glad he did.  I invite you to find a quiet moment to reflect on his words for us today, and allow them to challenge you in a new way as the end of our Lenten experience draws near.  Blessings on your journey…


March 15, 2016                              By: Mark Tentinger

Psalm 91:1-16

“You who live in the shelter of the Most High, who abide in the shadow of the Almighty, will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress; my God, in whom I trust.” For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence; he will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. You will not fear the terror of the night, or the arrow that flies by day, or the pestilence that stalks in darkness, or the destruction that wastes at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only look with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked. Because you have made the Lord your refuge, the Most High your dwelling place, no evil shall befall you, no scourge come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the adder, the young lion and the serpent you will trample under foot. Those who love me, I will deliver; I will protect those who know my name. When they call to me, I will answer them; I will be with them in trouble, I will rescue them and honor them. With long life I will satisfy them, and show them my salvation.”


Lately, I have been searching the scriptures for comfort, hope, and strength as responsibilities for classes and organizations pile up. Psalm 91 resounded with me because it emphasizes placing our trust in God. I found this appropriate for the Lenten season because this is a time for introspection and contemplation upon our personal relationships with God. When life gets stressful I tend to turn inward, and only inward, instead of trusting and relying upon God as the Psalmist urges us to do. When I think I am facing a problem alone and that I can only rely on myself it is easy to slip into despair and hopelessness. This scripture is important because it reminds us that no matter what challenges or struggles we face, if we face them with audacious trust in the God whose love for us never ceases, we will be delivered from our trials into safety and comfort.

However, this audacious faith and trust is not a one-dimensional trait. Satan attempted to use this very verse to tempt Jesus during his time in the desert. Though Jesus trusts God more than any of us could ever fathom, he does not test God by throwing himself off of the temple. Likewise, we must respond with caution to the safety and reassurance that God provides. We can trust wholly in him to provide and protect us, but we must not be so audacious as to make claims on behalf of God. Our response to this fantastic and undeserved love that God pours out for us should be to pour that same love out to others so that they might know the same trust and comfort.

Lord, may your refuge and fortitude inspire us to be courageous and loving in our faith.

Lenten Devotional 3/10

Good morning on this chilly and rainy day!  Our Lenten devotional for today comes to us from Cheryl Wilson.  Cheryl is the Associate Vice Chancellor and Controller in the Financial Services Office here at TCU, and she also happens to be the Advisor for one or student religious organizations – the Baptist Student Ministry.  Over the past few years I’ve come to know Cheryl largely through her role as Advisor to BSM.  In that time I’ve experienced her genuine kindness and desire to support our students and their Campus Minister in the work they are doing on campus and in growing in their faith.  A heart of gold, a warm smile, and an authentic desire to extend compassion to those she comes in contact with, Cheryl intentionally lives into her faith each day.  I think her words for us today are evidence of that, as well as the fact that life need not be perfect in order for us to be thankful.  I hope her words will open your mind and touch your heart today.  Blessings on your journey…


March 10, 2016                                By: Cheryl Wilson

Philippians 4: 6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”


Lent has been far different this year than I would have imagined in late January when I agreed to write my first Lenten devotional. My mother was unexpectedly hospitalized for a serious illness on February 4th. For most of the next two weeks, I was by her side at a hospital two hours from home. For much of that time, I couldn’t even seem to find the right words to pray. I was strengthened, though, knowing that so many dear friends and family members were praying just the right words on behalf of my mother and our family. What a blessing that when we are too weak and exhausted to even find the right words to pray, we can count on others and even Christ himself to intercede on our behalf. I was filled with comfort by that thought and by the words from Romans 8: 26-27:  “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.  And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.”


Even knowing that friends, family, and Christ himself was interceding on my mother’s behalf, I have to admit that there were still many anxious moments, especially when I would awaken throughout the night. During those moments, instead of letting my mind race with all my anxious thoughts, I tried to focus on thanking God for specific blessings of that day. I realized that the way in which I could follow the instruction in Philippians 4:6 to “not be anxious about anything” could only be accomplished by presenting my requests to God by prayer and petition,with thanksgiving. Focusing on praying “with thanksgiving” truly helped replace my anxious thoughts with the peace of God.

I’m very thankful that my mother is at home now and recovering after her time in the hospital. After I returned home, I have continued to try to focus on being thankful when my anxious thoughts about family, work, and so many other things try to replace the peace of God in my life. During the remainder of this Lenten season, I am challenged to not only be thankful for my many physical blessings, but to be thankful for the most amazing blessing of all—God’s grace and forgiveness offered to us through the death and resurrection of Christ.

Thank you, God, for the gift of your Son and for your Spirit that intercedes on our behalf. May your peace guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Lenten Devotional 3/8

Good morning!  I hope this email finds you safe from the storm and your​ Spring Break going well… even for those of us who are still working away!  Our Lenten devotional writer for today is the wonderful Claire Girman.  Claire is a Junior from Chapel Hill, NC, who is majoring in Journalism.  Many of you may know Claire through her role as President of our Chi Alpha Campus Ministry, or in her work as the TCU Athletics Media Relations Intern.  If you know her then you’ve undoubtedly been the recipient of a warm and bright smile that invites you in and makes you feel at home.  If you haven’t met her, well… you’re missing out.  Claire has a heart of gold and is willing to go above and beyond to help you in any way she can.  I believe that’s connected to, and deeply rooted in, her faith – this deep and overwhelming desire to be in relationship with and a help to others.  There is no hidden agenda with Claire – there’s simply kindness and compassion.  I hope her words will be helpful to you on your Lenten journey – that your life might be changed as a result of these 40 days.  Blessings on your journey…


March 8, 2016                                By: Claire Girman

“Therefore let everyone who is godly offer prayer to you at a time when you may be found; surely in the rush of great waters, they shall not reach him. You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance.” – Psalm 32: 6-7

Throughout our everyday lives, we can get caught up in the hustle and bustle of today, the worries of tomorrow and expectations of the future. Our lives are often filled with distractions that can take us away from living a life with Christ. Lent is a time for spiritual renewal. It is a time for us to re-focus our lives to be more in line with Jesus. We give this time to the Lord by making small sacrifices, or taking on little gains, to reflect on and remember the great sacrifice of our Savior and to renew ourselves.

Often what we don’t consider is what effect these actions we take during Lent have on our relationship with God. We can get caught up in the actions, themselves, and forget what emotional impact they have on our spiritual relationships. What comes with great sacrifice, is great vulnerability. When Jesus entered the wilderness, to pray and fast for 40 days, he faced hardships. He was tempted by Satan, but sought out God and found strength and clarity to resist temptation. He was ready to begin his ministry. What we don’t often question, is why Jesus made the decision to separate himself from his everyday life, to go into the wilderness.

Maybe Jesus needed some time with God to sort through the major changes happening in his life. Maybe he needed to break away from the familiar routine to see God, and himself, more clearly. Perhaps he was seeking some intentional time with God as he searched for direction and answers, just like us. Like Jesus, we may need to take some serious time to pray and listen for God. Whatever we give up or take on during the Lent season, may we do it with the intent to listen more for God. Lent is a 40-day trial run in attempting to change our lifestyle, and allowing God to change our hearts.

God, We thank you for this time You have given us to breathe, rejuvenate and reflect in You… To reflect on the sacrifices of Your Son. May the actions we take this season draw us nearer to You and Your message for us. Amen.

Lenten Devotional 3/3

Good morning!  I hope this email finds your day off to a good start!  Our devotional writer for today is none other than Mary Ellen Milam.  In addition to being a dear friend, Mary Ellen is also the Associate Director of Campus Recreation here at TCU, and is undoubtedly known to many of you.  I think it’s probably impossible to have met Mary Ellen and not remember her – she makes an impression that lasts!  Outgoing, energetic, engaging, inviting, kind, with a fantastic sense of humor – she quickly became one of my favorite people.  She really is an amazing person, and I’m so glad I have her in my life.  Plus she’ll let me talk her into almost anything if I provide her with enough chocolate.  J  And yes – I definitely owe her some serious chocolate for this favor!  I’ve never known Mary Ellen to shy away from a challenge, so I knew she would say yes to writing a devotional even though it might be a tad outside her comfort zone.  I knew she would do a fantastic job, and she didn’t disappoint.  Her message for us today is heartfelt, and I’m grateful for her willingness to share it.  Upon reading it I immediately felt compelled to act, which is always the sign of a great message.  I have no doubt that you’ll be impacted by her words for us today, and I challenge you to act upon them in a way that feels right to you.  Blessings on your journey, my friend…


March 3, 2016                            By: Mary Ellen Milam

Matthew 25: 35-40 “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

The Lenten season is a time of renewal, reflection and a rededication to living a life of sacrifice and giving.   When I think about Lent, it always takes me back to one of my favorite childhood memories.  On the Sunday prior to Ash Wednesday, the church I attended gave out little cardboard boxes that we put together in the shape of a house.  Beginning on Ash Wednesday, we would decide on an item that we would give up for Lent but rather than focus on our own sacrifice, the idea was to take what we would normally spend on that item and put it in the box.   It was a way to think, not of ourselves, but of others.  On Easter Sunday, we would then bring our box or boxes, and lay them on the altar.  The church would then use the funds collected to help those who came to the church throughout the year seeking assistance.

This memory always reminds me of how each individual sacrifice, no matter how small, can make a big difference in the lives of others.  That, rather than focusing inward and dwelling on what we don’t have, we can look outward to those in need.  That through giving we ultimately receive the greatest gift.


Thank you for the reminder that, while we may see ourselves as sacrificing for others, that you gave the ultimate sacrificial gift to us by giving us your Son.  Help us, Lord, to follow His example in putting others first, tending to those in need and focusing not on what we don’t have but rather on the blessings you bestow upon us daily.

Lenten Devotional 3/1

Good afternoon!  I hope you’ve found a moment to slip away from your desk and the busyness of the day to step outside and enjoy the beautiful weather on this first day of March!  If you haven’t… consider this your homework.  J  In preparation for your excursion, take a moment and read the very profound and thoughtful devotional that’s been prepared for you today.

Today’s devotional comes to us from Patricia Duncan.  Patricia is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Religion here at TCU.  I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to connect with Patricia a few times in our work here, and I’m always grateful for her calm and inviting presence, as well as her keen insight.  I think you’ll find both of those qualities present in her words for us today.  I invite you to take a moment, absorb the message she is offering us, and step outside to the beauty of this day – open your heart and receive what God is offering you in this moment on your Lenten journey.  Blessings to you…


March 1, 2016                                  By: Patricia Duncan

When evening came, the boat was out on the sea, and [Jesus] was alone on the land.  When he saw that [the disciples] were straining at the oars against an adverse wind, he came towards them early in the morning, walking on the sea.  He intended to pass them by.  But when they saw him walking on the sea, they thought it was a ghost and cried out; for they all saw him and were terrified.  But immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.”  Then he got into the boat with them and the wind ceased.  And they were utterly astounded, for they did not understand about the loaves, but their hearts were hardened.  (Mark 6:47-52)

The spare style of the Gospel of Mark discloses Jesus to us as a powerful and enigmatic figure.  His closest followers are frequently confounded by his actions, and sometimes they are simply terrified.  When, almost by accident, they witness Jesus walking across the Sea of Galilee one morning in the grey of dawn, they are struck with fear by his ghost-like presence.  Naturally, they have no words when the wind suddenly ceases and this mysterious Jesus climbs into the boat with them.  And yet, perhaps the strangest part of this astonishing little story is the remark that the narrator makes to us readers at the end.  Why were the disciples of Jesus astounded by this series of uncanny events?  Because they did not understand about the bread (literally, “the loaves”).

I love this unobtrusive little comment in the Gospel of Mark, because it is as if the narrator suddenly turns to us and gives us a little shake.  Have you been paying attention, dear reader? Do you understand about the bread? 

The comment is surely intended first and foremost to direct our attention back to the preceding episode in the Gospel of Mark, searching for what it was that we missed in the story about the multiplication of the loaves and fishes.  It reminds us that, in this gospel narrative, bread is not merely bread.  We must pay attention if we want to comprehend and experience the deeper significance of things.  This goes for our reading, but it surely applies to our everyday existence, as well.  How often are our own hearts hardened to the sacred mystery that lurks hidden in even the most ordinary of moments—in our casual conversations, in a meal with friends or family, in the warmth of the sun on our skin.  Are you, dear reader, paying attention to the “bread” of life?

Gracious God, open our eyes to your presence around and within us.

2/25 Lenten Devotional

Good morning!  I hope your week is going well and that your Thursday is off to a good start!  Our Lenten Devotional for today comes to us from Rebekah Stutheit!

Rebekah is a Sophomore from Saginaw, TX, and she’s double majoring in Religion and Communication Studies.  Many of you might recognize her name, as she’s currently serving as The Office of Religious & Spiritual Life’s Social Media Intern this semester.  While you might have seen her posting events and stories on our Facebook page, TCU Faith & Spirit, you might not have been able to hear her share her own faith journey yet.  I thought we’d take care of that now.  Rebekah is one of those incredible students that you love to work with, and I’m fortunate that I get to work with her not only in our office, but as one of the Vice Presidents of TCU Better Together (our interfaith organization) as well!  Rebekah is intelligent, compassionate, funny, appropriately sassy at times (ha!), and deeply committed to her faith.  I’m so thankful that I get to work with her, and I wanted to share her wisdom with you today.  So take a moment, read her words for us today, and allow God to speak to your heart.  Blessings on your journey…


February 25, 2016                         By: Rebekah Stutheit

Joel 2: 12-13

12 Yet even now, says the Lord, return to me with all your hearts, with fasting, with weeping, and with sorrow; 13 tear your hearts and not your clothing.  Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, very patient, full of faithful love, and ready to forgive.

Being a sophomore in college, it is hard to stay out of the infamous “sophomore slump,” or as I like to call it, the “mid-semester slump.”  While I love school and all of the things the school year entails, I’m reaching the point in the semester where it gets hard to stay motivated and excited about my day-to-day tasks.  It never fails that around mid-February in the spring semester, I begin to find myself tired and almost burnt out from my weekly routine.  Because of this, I find it hard to make intentional time for God in my life, as I get caught up in the organized chaos that my schedule always seems to turn into.

I find it interesting that the season of Lent falls around the same time I start to feel my slump coming on.  To me, there is a direct relationship between this feeling, and the feeling of those being spoken to in the book of Joel.  As I reflect on them being told to return to God, I am reminded that in our busy lives we should also find time to return to God, for he is merciful and compassionate, very patient, full of faithful love, and ready to forgive.

No matter how long it has been, or how much our busy schedules may cause us to stray, God is always there waiting for us to spend time in relationship with God.  I feel like there is no better time than Lent for us to remember this, and to help redirect our focus towards God.

God, help me to sit, be still, clear my mind, and open my heart to You now.  I pray that You will speak to me now as only You can.  Amen.


2/23 Lenten Devotional

Good afternoon!  I hope your week is off to a good start and your Tuesday is shaping up nicely!  To assist you through your day I offer you a Lenten devotional that should serve as a good reminder to us all.

Our writer for today is Steve Levering.  Steve is an Instructor in Strategic Communication in the Bob Schieffer College of Communication.  He has been an active member of the TCU community for quite some time, having served in a number of areas on campus.  Steve was someone who several individuals named as a potential contributor to our TCU devotional series, and he didn’t disappoint.  I think you’ll find his words for us today to be familiar in many ways, and a solid reminder to do the important work of self-examination that’s fundamental to the Lenten season.  Hit “pause” on your work mode for a moment, and open your mind to the words God has for each of us today.  Blessings on your journey,


February 23, 2016                         By: Stephen Levering

Spring semester on a college campus is a stressful time. In the fall semester, there’s a feeling of freshness. There are new challenges, new people to meet, and the campus has a sense of renewal. But the spring semester feels different. Sometimes it feels like the challenges are holdovers from the fall, and the energy level shifts from renewed to exhausted. At a certain point, you hear people saying, “If I can only make it to Spring Break,” or “Good Friday will be here soon.”

Quite honestly, when I was thinking about this devotional my first thought was, “I’m not in the right place spiritually for this right now, and my to-do list is too long.” Ash Wednesday completely slipped my mind until I saw a group of students with ash on their foreheads. (Of course, that means I missed Fat Tuesday as well!)

But the good thing about Lent is that there are reminders all around. When I saw the students with ash on their foreheads, it reminded me to pause and reflect on the upcoming Easter. When someone tells me they’ve given up something for Lent, it serves as a gentle reminder of someone who gave up much more on my behalf. And it pricks my conscience that I was too busy to remember.

Luke chapter 10 ends with Jesus visiting the home of Martha and Mary. Martha is working hard to make sure everything is perfect for the visit, while her sister Mary gets on Martha’s nerves (as only a sibling can) by sitting at Jesus’ feet and listening. I imagine Martha felt very put upon as she did all the work. Finally she appeals to Jesus by saying, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”(Luke 10:40b-42, NIV)

Lord, thank you for the reminders you place in our lives. I am sorry I allowed my busyness to interfere with Lent. I will make a concerted effort to spend more time with you.​