Tag Archive: Bible


What’s That Sound?

imagesFootball games are so much fun!  The people, the snacks, the sounds and the game.

After attending several home football games this fall I’ve become familiar with the same sounds that the band plays at each game.  At the last game, though, I heard different sounds.  And I wondered, “What’s that sound?”  I looked around the stadium.  And then I knew.  A different band was playing.  The visiting team had brought their band with them and they were playing very loudly on the other side of the field.  So loudly, in fact, that it was difficult to hear those familiar tunes from our own home team band.  A fan near me shouted out to that visiting band, “Are you trying to play louder than our band?!”  I quietly agreed with him.  I had thought the same thing, but I’m not one for shouting.  I struggled to listen to our home band play as I tried not to hear that other band.  After all, the other band was playing music that I didn’t know and this was our field.  Our own band should be heard loud and clear.

Then I thought about how we so often hear things that contradict what we know so well.  Those sounds can be so loud.  And I’m sure people mean well, just like that visiting band.  But meaning well and being loud doesn’t make something right or true.  Things that contradict the Bible or just what is true, like people’s own idea of how the world came to be or people’s own definition of marriage and so many other ideas today, are just sounds.  We hear a lot of sounds out there so it’s important to know what is true and to spend time reading the Bible so that it will be familiar to us, like the band’s music at a home football game.

So, next time I’m hoping that the visiting team doesn’t bring their band with them.  Sorry visiting team.  I just want to hear those familiar sounds of my hometown team’s band.

 

 

One Tall Tulip

IMG_4964Spring is here!  What a joy it is to finally see colorful flowers quietly appearing after a long, cold winter with the ground covered in only white snow or brown grass.

One of my favorite things about spring is my tulips.  It was so fun the other day to drive up my driveway and notice green tulip leaves poking up through the mulch-covered ground around my tree.  Each day after that I watched them, anticipating bright-colored tulips growing out of those leaves.  And then there was one!  I waited for more, but there would be no more tulips.  Only one. One tall tulip.  The leaves are there for several others, but it seems that the rabbits ate those other tulips.  Only one tulip stands safe and strong.

If I had thought of it earlier I would have sprinkled blood meal on the leaves to keep the rabbits away.  I have done that to protect them in the past, but this year I completely forgot about those rabbits.  Oh, I saw them running and playing in my backyard, but I forgot that they like to eat tulips.  I forgot that I was in a battle with the rabbits.  So while I had just what I needed to protect my tulips against the rabbits, I didn’t use it.  I left it right there in my garage.  And now I have one tulip.  It’s a beautiful tulip, though.  Bright yellow.  Tall.  Petals joyously and victoriously wide open to the sky.  As if somehow it knows that it’s the only tulip that survived those hungry rabbits.

My rabbit and tulip situation is a good reminder that we are in a battle, whether we know it or not.  And we can get so busy doing all of our wonderful things, but forget about spending time in God’s Word.  And then we forget about the enemy that wants us to get so busy and forget about spending time in God’s Word.  Our enemy is like those rabbits hanging out in our backyards just waiting to eat our tulips when we’re not looking.  And we have what we need to keep our enemy away.  Maybe not blood meal, but we have God’s Word to protect us, but we have to use it.  We can’t just leave it in the garage – or on the table or in a drawer – and forget about it.

Ephesians 6:10-11 says, “Finally, be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might.  Put on the full armor of God, that you may be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil,” (NASB).  Verse 17 says, “And take up the Helmet of Salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”

We need the full armor of God every day to stand firm in this world, which includes the sword of the Spirit – not just in our homes, but in our hearts and minds.  There’s a new song by Casting Crowns that talks about the enemy waiting for the night to fall.  It says, “And while you slumber, he’s gonna take it all…he knows you have the answers, but Truth lies dusty on your shelf and the sword that you could slay him with has become an ornament and nothing else,” (Waiting on the Night To Fall).  Has your Bible been forgotten?  Has it become a dusty ornament on your shelf?  Is that blood meal sitting in the garage while the rabbits are happily devouring your tulips?

Let’s take up our sword – the Word of God – and stand firm against the schemes of the devil.  We can win the battle with the rabbits in our yards.

You could be like that one joyful, victorious tall tulip with it’s bright yellow petals reaching toward the sky!

No matter what’s going on around you, you can stand – like my one tall tulip.

Here’s “Waiting on the Night to Fall” by Casting Crowns:

 

 

Being Thankful

Fans &  Giant Thank You Sign

November is a great time to think about being thankful.

A friend of mine recently shared this quote that she heard:  “What if all that you had today was what you thanked God for yesterday.  What would you have?”

Something to think about, huh?

I recently had the opportunity to teach at an elementary school chapel and encourage the children there to be thankful.  We learned 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus,” (NIV).  We’re to be thankful all the time because that’s what God wants us to do.

So, thinking about God’s Word and that quote above, does anyone else besides me have some thanking to do?

Have a happy Thanksgiving holiday as you choose to be thankful!

Worms

Worms!

So the other day I saw a spider and wrote about that.  Today I saw a worm, so why not write about that?

The worm was on my driveway.  I’m sure that just the other day that worm was probably joyfully exploring the dirt under our grass and discovering exciting things that worms like to discover, but today it was not.  I don’t know what happened, but I found it dried up in the sunshine and kind of curled up on my driveway.  Not really a good thing for a worm.

So what does that worm have to do with anything?  Well, you know, it’s easy to get busy and leave out time for God and His Word.  Or to let all those things that we worry about kind of take over our thoughts and time.  But when we do that, we can become just like that dried up worm on my driveway.  God made us to know Him and have a relationship with Him so it’s important to spend time with Him.  It may sound strange, but when we do spend time with Him even when we know we have a million things to do, somehow we have time for everything.  And when we give our worries to Him, He takes care of us.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be like that dried up worm.  I want to be like the joyful worm exploring and discovering the world of whatever worms explore.  Maybe even books!  Like a bookworm!  Haha, the Bible is a book!  We could explore God’s Word, the Bible, and spend time talking with God and also with other believers and then we’ll stay joyful as we discover more amazing things about our God every day.  Even when we’re busy, or worried, or starting to feel like a lonely worm laying in the hot sun on my driveway.

Okay, are you thinking too much about worms now?  Maybe this will help.  Here’s a song for you by Downhere.  It’s “Let Me Rediscover You.”  I didn’t see any worms in this video.  I did see dirt, but no worms.

Just call me “helper.”

husbandandwifedrawingA friend of mine and I recently started a ladies’ Bible study about marriage.  One of the first things that we are going to talk about is our role as women in marriage.  I’m so excited about sharing something that I have learned about Genesis 2:18, “Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him,'” (NASB).

Right in the very beginning of the Bible we learn that Eve was created to be a helper for Adam.  Yep, a helper.  Does that sound like a good role to you?

You might be thinking of your little child helping you sweep the floor or helping you fold towels and you call that precious little one “Mommy’s little helper” and you thank them, but all the time you’re thinking about how you could have swept the floor or folded the towels in half the time that you did with your helper.  It’s no wonder that the word helper doesn’t seem so significant these days.  Even in my children’s ministry I am careful to call those on my team “my team” and not “my helpers” because the word helper sounds so unimportant and I want my team to know that they are very important.  In fact, there is no way that I could do the things that I do without them.

So what does the word helper mean anyway?  Webster defines help as “to make things easier or better for; aid; assist.”  The word helper didn’t get a written definition, except for the part of speech.  It is a noun.  But as I was looking for that word, I saw the word helpmeet, which some versions of Genesis 2:18 use, and this word means “helpmate,” which means “a helpful companion.

So now we know how we define helper, but how does God define the word?  Can one who “makes things easier or better for” or is a “helpful companion” really be important?

The Hebrew word used for helper in Genesis 2:18 is actually quite a significant word.  You see, most of the times that this same word is used in the Old Testament, it refers to God.  This is one of my favorite verses, “I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; from whence shall my help come?  My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth,” (Psalm 121:1-2).  (Sorry about the “whence,” but I’m using my NASB version today.)  Here’s another good verse, “You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord, He is their help and their shield,” (Psalm 115:11).  We read in these verses and many others that God is our helper and I am very thankful for that.  I know you are, too.  So right away we see that our role as a wife as being a helper for our husband is very important.  I mean, we all want God to be our helper, right?  And we definitely need Him to be.  God is not insignificant in our lives.  He is very essential and important.  Our husbands need us to be their helper, too.  And it’s a very important role.

But that’s not all there is about this Hebrew word.  This same word is also used in a military way.  Before Moses died we read this Hebrew word three times in Deuteronomy 33 as he is blessing the people of Israel and encouraging them as they are about to go to the Promised Land.  Look at these verses.  “And this regarding Judah; so he said, ‘Hear, O Lord, the voice of Judah, and bring him to his people.  With his hands he contended for them; and mayest Thou be a help against his adversaries.'” (verse 7), “There is none like the God of Jeshurun.  Who rides the heavens to your help, and through the skies in His majesty.” (verse 26), and “Blessed are you, O Israel; who is like you, a people saved by the Lord, who is the shield of your help.  And the sword of your majesty!  So your enemies shall cringe before you, and you shall tread upon their high places.” (verse 29).  Moses uses this same Hebrew word for help knowing that the Israelites are about to go over to Jericho and face battles.  As we read these verses we learn that our role of helper becomes even more significant.

Being a helper has way more meaning than we might think when we simply read that passage in Genesis 2:18 and start to feel rather unimportant.  When you go back to Genesis 2 and read in verses 21-22 about how God took the rib out of Adam’s side to create Eve, we understand even more.  You see, God took a rib out of Adam’s side.  Not his head.  Not his foot.  Eve was not created to be superior to Adam and she was not created to be inferior to Adam.  She was created from Adam’s side.  They were equals.  Adam was made first so he was to be the leader and Eve was to be the follower, but they were to be equals.

Did you know that being a helper could be so important?  Now we know that the wife’s role as a helper is very significant.  In fact, I can’t think of a higher calling for us as wives.  We are to be our husband’s companions.  We are to stand together as one and face the battles of life together, with God.  Can you imagine what our world – or even just our own families – would be like today if we did stand together as one – as best friends – as equals, but allowing our husbands to lead – as we help them – as we face all those battles of life?

Here’s another thing that I like about the way that God made Eve to be Adam’s helper.  God knew that it was not good for Adam to be alone.  If you’re a teacher, then you know that guiding your students to discover what you want them to learn is a very effective way of teaching them.  Being the amazing teacher that He is, God brings the animals to Adam and has Adam name them.  Can you imagine Adam naming all those animals?  Rooster and hen.  Bull and cow.  Buck and doe.  Lion and lioness.  You get the picture.  Finally Adam is done and he looks around and discovers that there is no one for him.  He is alone.  So God steps in and creates exactly what Adam needs.  Eve.  His helper.

And you are exactly what your husband needs.  His helper.  And just like my ministry team and I can do things together – with God – that I could never do alone, you and your husband, together with God, will be able to stand together and do things that you could never do alone.

Do you think your husband feels alone today?  Are you being his companion?  Are you allowing him to be the leader in your home?  How do you feel about your role as your husband’s helper?  How can you make things easier or better for your husband today?  Will you stand as one with your husband as equals and best friends as you face the battles of life together with the God who made you?

I want to be who God created me to be  in my marriage so I feel very important when I say – just call me “helper.”

Unknown Treasure

Treasure Chest

What unknown treasures are in your home?

I heard an interesting news story today.  Apparently someone had a certain very special Japanese chest in their home – one that was worth millions of dollars.  But they must have not known the value of that chest because they had used it for a TV stand.  Yes, a TV stand.  Then, after this person died, this special Japanese chest was discovered and sold for (if I remember correctly) 9.7 million dollars.  Wow!  Makes me wonder if I have anything like that.

I don’t think I do, but as I considered the possibility I thought of all those giant coffee table Bibles that people have in their homes.  The words contained within them are very valuable, but the people who own them may not even know it.  Psalm 19:10 says that God’s laws “are more precious than gold, than much pure gold,” (NIV).

And then, what about the people in our homes?  Our relationships are also very valuable.  I have a wonderful husband and great kids.  Jesus told us how much God loves and cares for His people and said, “Consider the ravens:  They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them.  And how much more valuable you are than birds!” (NIV).  The people in my home are very valuable to God, and to me!

I may not have a million dollar Japanese chest in my home, but I have do God’s Word, which is always true and tells me about my amazing God who loves me, cares for me and gave me my wonderful family.  And that is the most valuable thing I know.

A true, known treasure.

Leaving a Mark

Handprint

Last week I hosted a vacation Bible school in my backyard called a “5-Day Club,” which is a ministry of Child Evangelism Fellowship.  Many children came each day during the week and it was a lot of fun to chat with them and their moms.  However, each day the children left their mark in the way of animal cookie crumbs on the patio, donuts under the swings or purple, red and orange popsicle juice on the pool deck.

If you haven’t heard of Child Evangelism Fellowship before, they are an international ministry that shares the Gospel with kids.  The 5-Day Clubs are taught by teenagers during the summer after the teens are trained.  It’s really a fun time!

So last week I invited my friends and neighbors to come to my backyard for the 5-Day Club and, except for snack clean-up, it was a neat time.  Each morning the teenagers came and played games with the kids, sang fun songs, taught Bible lessons and shared the Gospel.  At the end of the week I invited the teens and their siblings to swim in our pool.  After they left I found two little handprints on the lower portion of the mirror in our exercise room where the kids had changed for our pool party.  Yes, the teens’ siblings left their mark just like the children had during the week.

But the teenagers left their mark, too.  The children went home each day with songs about Jesus singing in their heads, many of them memorized Bible verses that God can use in their lives and one of them even decided to trust Jesus as their Savior.  Now that’s the kind of mark that I want to leave.

We all leave our mark everywhere we go and in everything we do.  God’s desire for each one of us is to choose a relationship with Him and then to do good things that He has already planned for us to do.  That is what the teens did here last week.  Okay, so I know we can’t all spend our summers teaching children about Jesus, but that’s okay because God has a plan for each one of us.  Ephesians 2:10 is one of my favorite Bible verses, “God made us.  He created us to belong to Christ Jesus.  Now we can do good things.  Long ago God prepared them for us to do,” (NIrV).

So what mark will you choose to leave?  Will it be simply leaving cookie crumbs behind for other people to clean up or will it be choosing to belong to Jesus and following His plan for your life?  If you’re stopping by my backyard, I’d prefer not to find any more melted donuts under the swings.  Oh, and if you need some inspiration in encouraging your kids in leaving their mark, you can read my “Papa’s Plan for Buddy Bee” book with them!

Let’s make our mark for Jesus today!

Celebrating Marriage

IMG_0085My husband and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary in May!  As I think about being married to him over the last 25 years, I like this Bible verse, “…I found the one my heart loves…,” (Song of Songs 3:4 NIV).

I feel like we have been celebrating marriage a lot around here over the last year.  My daughter and her husband got married last summer and since that time two of my cousins and one of my nieces have gotten married.  And one of my nephews will be married very soon.

All of that means that I have been having fun giving bridal showers over the last year and sharing about marriage, which I have shared some of here on my blog.  If you missed them, here are the links to three of the posts:

https://lorischulz.wordpress.com/2013/03/26/communication-mishap/

https://lorischulz.wordpress.com/2013/03/10/seeing-spots/

https://lorischulz.wordpress.com/2012/08/31/making-a-marvelous-marriage-now-and-later/

But not only are we celebrating marriages around here, we’re also celebrating wedding anniversaries.  My daughter and her husband celebrated their first anniversary in June, my husband and I celebrated our 25th anniversary in May, and my parents will celebrate their 50th anniversary very soon.  So in honor of celebrating marriage, let’s have some fun!

Maybe you’ve only been married for a short time.  You could share about how you met or what it was that you really liked about your spouse before you were married.  Or maybe you’ve been married for a while like my husband and me.  You could share a fun story about your marriage.  Or maybe you have been married for a long time like my parents.  You could share some wisdom with us.

First I’ll share some short thoughts for each one of those and then it will be YOUR turn!

cartoongirlandboy

It’s going to seem silly when you read this, but here is how my husband and I met and what I liked about him.

I remember when I first saw my husband.  We were at a family camp with our church.  At the beginning of the camp, they had the families that had not previously attended this camp go up to the stage at the front.  Then they invited the other families to choose a new family and invite them to have dinner with them to make them feel welcome.  That was when I saw him.  He was on the stage with his family and he was very cute.  I leaned over to my dad and told him that that tall boy with the blonde hair was really cute and asked my dad to choose that family to have dinner with.  My dad tried, but another family got the dinner.  However, my parents invited them to have dinner with us anyway.  That was when I met my future husband.  (Thanks, Mom and Dad!)  We were in high school then and we’ve been together ever since.  And he still is very cute!  Yep, that’s what I liked about him at first.  But now I know him better and he is a man that I respect so much.  I’m very glad to be his wife.

So, how did you meet your spouse?  What was it that drew you to him or her?

cartoonfamily

Now I’ll share a story about marriage.  I don’t know why this one came to mind – we have so many stories – but here it is.

One day a few years ago while we were eating dinner, my daughter observed something and shared it out loud.  She was a teenager at the time and we have two boys also.  I have no idea what the conversation was, but I remember what she said.  She noticed my husband and me discussing something, probably about something one of the kids wanted to do, I don’t really know, but she said, “You two talk to each other with your eyes.”  She was right.  We couldn’t discuss out loud whatever we wanted to say at the time, but that didn’t keep us from “talking” with each other!

I’d love to hear your stories about being married!

cartoonbrideandgroomblack

Now it’s time for some marriage wisdom.  I enjoy reading books about marriage and learning more every day.  It’s great to have a good marriage!  One bit of wisdom that I think is really good for everyone is remembering to forgive.  My husband and I attended the FamilyLife “Love Like You Mean It Marriage Cruise” a few years ago.  It was so much fun and we can’t wait to have the opportunity to go again sometime.  On the cruise we listened to several speakers and I sat there thinking that I wished someone had told us those things 20 years ago because we had to learn them all on our own.  Kirk Cameron and his wife, Chelsea, were two of the speakers.  Chelsea spoke about forgiveness.  She said that when we don’t forgive, we keep that person in that place of where they did something wrong.  They don’t want to be kept there.  They want to be forgiven and change and be the person that they really want to be.  We need to forgive them so that we both can move on.  I have a wonderful husband, but we all need forgiveness.  I’m glad that my husband is quick to forgive me!  After that cruise we were able to attend one of FamilyLife’s “Weekend to Remember” Couple’s Getaways.  What a fun time!  My other bit of wisdom is for everyone to attend that weekend.  The weekend getaways are held in many cities and you can even attend as an engaged couple.  My husband and I sent our daughter and son-in-law before they were married and they said that they were given a lot of great information to help make their marriage strong.

So, what is your bit of marriage wisdom?

I’m looking forward to reading your stories as we celebrate marriage!

You Could Be A Hero!

Screen Shot 2013-04-09 at 2.11.09 PM Screen Shot 2013-04-09 at 2.10.38 PMDid you know that you could be someone’s hero and you don’t even know it?

Recently I found out that two of my Good News Club children wrote about me for their hero assignment in school.  If you’re a Bible teacher, than you understand how fun this is.  We don’t teach in order to get things like recognition, money or our pictures on Wheaties boxes.  In fact, it costs money to lead a Good News Club and to do many things in ministry and often in ministry no one says, “Thank you.”  It doesn’t matter though, because we teach because we feel called by God.  And we get to teach from God’s Word.  What could be more exciting than that?  However, when parents and children let us know that what we are doing is making a difference in the lives of those that we teach, that is such a blessing!

So this winter I was excited to find out that two of my kids in club wrote about me for their hero assignment at school.  They had to draw a picture of their hero and put that on the cover of a Wheaties box of cereal and then put their story on the back of the cereal box.  I’ve never had my picture on a Wheaties box before and now it is on two!  (Haha.  Don’t go looking for them in your store.  They’re not real Wheaties boxes.)  The really neat thing about this is not that they wrote about me, but that these boxes were displayed in the school where people could find out about Good News Club and our amazing God.  Now that is very cool!

So are you wondering what makes a hero to children?  Want to know what is important in children’s ministry?  Here are some of the things that they wrote:

“Mrs. Lori has a kind heart.  When we come into Good News Club we get a tasty snack.  When we are stuck on something or don’t know what the answer is she will help us.  After Good News Club is over Mrs. Lori lets us pick from a million books.  And she is kinder than my brother and sister and trust me they are kind.”

“We do athletic stuff like parachute and Duck, Duck, Goose.  If you searched up most athletic person there would be a picture of Mrs. Lori on there.”

“She knows everyone’s name every day.”

“She is smarter than Albert Einstein.  She knows every word in the book that we read.  Mrs. Lori knows what to say when she is up to talk.  If she wasn’t smart we would be dumb when it comes to God.”  (My note:  That book that we read is the Bible.  Both of the children drew it on their Wheaties boxes!)

“Mrs. Lori is friendly.  She is always fair and doesn’t leave anybody out.  When hurt she will always help you.”

“She helps kids when they don’t know what to do.”

“She’s nice to the other people on the Good News Club Team.”

“She’s intelligent.  She knows every word in the stories.  She can say every kid’s name and tell every kid about God.”

“She always puts God first.”

I think it’s fun to see what is important to the children that we minister to.  It seems that things like knowing their names, being kind and friendly, knowing the Bible lessons well, playing fun games and having tasty snacks are important to these kids.  With God’s help, I can keep doing that.

I’m still amazed that God has called me to be a part of teaching children and leading them to know Him.  What a fun task!  And who knows?  You may be a hero today and you don’t even know it.

The thing that I’m really excited about is that what these kids really see in me is Jesus, and He is the real hero!

Candles

English: Glassybaby votive, dark with candle

Do you like candles?  Maybe decorative candles?  Birthday candles?  What about candles that aren’t really candles at all?

The other day I was eating in a restaurant that had candles on the tables.  But there was something different about these candles.  They weren’t real.  They looked real, but they were not real.  They were fake.  Inside the votive cover was a plastic flame with an on/off switch on the bottom of it.  Have you seen those?  They look so real through the votive holder, but inside they are just plastic-covered flickering lights.  And they don’t even get warm.

That made me think about real candles.  Real candles have real flames that get hot.  In fact, they get so hot that as they burn the wax from the candle melts.  You can even use a real candle to light other candles.  And if you’re not careful, real candles can start a fire.  Because they’re not fake.  They are real candles with real burning fire.

So I have a question for you.  If you were like one of these candles today, which one would you be like?  Are you like that plastic candle that looks really neat, but isn’t really flickering with real fire?  Or are you like a real candle that is burning hot with a flame that could start other candles on fire?

I want to be like the real candle.  I think as we spend time getting to know God more every day we become like a real candle.  John 8:12 says this, “He (Jesus) said, ‘I am the light of the world.  Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life,'” (NIV).  When we believe in Jesus as our Savior, then we have the light of life.  As we continue to walk with Him, we will reflect His light.  Acts 13:47 says this, “For this is what the Lord has commanded us:  ‘I have made you a light…that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth,'” (NIV).  Do you have the light of life?  Is your fire spreading to others?  We have been commanded to tell the good news and we can do that through the way that we live and the words that we say – in the way that we shine like real candles.

Maybe you are feeling like that restaurant candle today, the one with the pretend flame.  Maybe you go to church or even call yourself a Christian, but you’ve never made the decision to believe in Jesus as your Savior.  You can do that today!  Or maybe you decided to believe in Jesus as your Savior, but you haven’t been taking time to really know Him.  You can do that by reading the Bible, talking with God, spending time with other believers and also by telling other people about what God has done for you.  That restaurant candle looked neat on the table, but it just didn’t have real fire.  You don’t have to be like that.

I have to admit that the restaurant candle was interesting for a while, but I want the real thing.  I want to be like a real candle with a real flame that burns.  I want my heart to burn with the love of Jesus in such a way that I will be the hands and feet of Jesus to others, to do my part in bringing salvation to the ends of the earth.  Paul wrote this in 2 Corinthians 4:6, “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.  But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us,” (NIV).

Let’s be like real candles today, shining with the light and love of Jesus in our hearts so that others will know the light of the glory of God.