Be Strong

by Katy Kauffman


There were three reasons why Joshua could have been dismayed by God’s call to be the next leader of Israel: over a million Israelites, hundreds of square miles to conquer, and fearsome enemies. His assignment was to lead the people across the Jordan River to possess the land which God had promised to give them. Joshua was supposed to fill Moses’ shoes as a spiritual leader of the people, a people who had stubbornly resisted Moses’ leadership and the leadership of God.


For the great task set before Joshua, God told him three times to be strong and of good courage (Joshua 1:6, 7, 9). Joshua would need strength to overcome weakness, courage to overcome fear, and faith to overcome doubt.


Where would Joshua’s strength, courage, and faith come from? The LORD Himself. God reassured him, “As I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you” (Josh 1:5). God’s Word would also help Joshua to lead the people. Success would come from observing God’s law, which explains how to love God and one another. Joshua had the LORD and the Word to strengthen him for the journey ahead.


When our journey seems long or the task ahead seems difficult, we have God and His Word to keep us going. He says to us, “Be strong and of good courage. I am with you.” He renews our zeal and energizes our spirits for the work and ministry He calls us to. God gives us a special resource in Christ to do our assignment, a resource that the apostle Paul encouraged Timothy, his son in the faith, to tap into.

grace, Jesus, strength, ministry, perseverance, 2 Timothy: Winning the Victory, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Becoming Like Mary, One Day at a Time


by Katy Kauffman


I used to think being like Mary, the mother of Jesus, was unattainable. After all, God picked her to be the mother of the Messiah. What kind of godliness would it take to be qualified for such a role? I didn’t think I would ever attain that level of goodness.


But “perfect” isn’t what God was looking for. In Mary, He found willingness. She said yes to God and His plan.


Yes to being so young and becoming a parent to the Son of God in human form.
Yes to risking Joseph’s reaction to the news.

Christmas, Mary, Jesus, God’s will, willingness, Becoming Like Mary One Day at a Time, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

True North


by Katy Kauffman


I kept losing North. It was 27 degrees outside, and although I was wearing 5 layers, I started to lose feeling in my fingertips. Cars kept crossing our intersection, and I had to keep up with where North was. About a year ago, I helped my dad and a team test light levels in a downtown area, and I was in charge of the grid map and showing them which spot to test next.


The red building, I thought. That’s it.


In the middle of a cluster of buildings, a mini sky scraper glowing with red lights served as my compass. Whenever I lost my sense of direction, I looked in every direction to find my red marker. Thankfully the marker never moved as we tested 24 spots in the intersection.


As we travel through life, our path doesn’t stay in a simple straight line. Sometimes we have to meander on an ever-curving path down into a valley or hustle up a steep, rugged path on a mountain. It can be easy to lose our sense of direction, and we wonder which way to go. Which way is North.

Jesus, the cross, hope, guidance, storms, True North, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Say Something


by Katy Kauffman


I wanted to say something. On Christmas Eve one year, I played an angel with some of my friends in our church’s live nativity. The three of us angels greeted Mary and Joseph when they arrived in Bethlehem, circled around them as with God’s love and protection, and stood in reverent joy celebrating Jesus’ birth.


We saw the shepherds come to worship the tiny King. Then the wise men came and knelt before the manger, placing their crowns on the ground before Him. All the while songs about Jesus’ birth, death, and resurrection played in the background. While we stood on stage, the pastor talked about the significance of the birth of Christ, His life, and His death for each of us. He closed our Christmas Eve communion service with this declaration—“Jesus is alive!”


No wonder the angels praised God the night Jesus was born. I bet they couldn’t help it. As I stood on stage, I wanted to sing or to proclaim—“Here He is!!” The angels had been anticipating the moment of Jesus’ birth for centuries.

Christmas, Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Mark, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

He Calls Himself the Son of Man


by Becky Hitchcock


“Good morning, Pastor,” I once wrote in an email before dawn.


My pastor had encouraged the church to read the Gospel of Mark. The action-packed narrative reads like a novel. It led me to other places in the Scriptures, too. Many of which I hadn’t considered in a long time.   


“I’m impressed with Jesus calling Himself the Son of Man.” I further wrote, “He seems to like this title, and I like how the Savior identifies with my humanness. He garbed Himself with flesh. He became like me to save me from sin. He now sits at the right hand of God, the Father, and intercedes for me. Anyway, my rambling comes from listening to my pastor who said to read the Gospel of Mark. See – I was listening – just wanted you to know.”


Daylight came all too soon that morning. I closed my Bible and laptop to meet the demands of the day. Yet the notion of the Savior calling Himself the Son of Man stayed with me.

Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Pride, Humility, Mark, He Calls Himself the Son of Man, Becky Hitchcock, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Celebrate the Hero This Thanksgiving


by Katy Kauffman


My mind constantly wants to make up adventure stories. They often include a journey through a land that looks like New Zealand. (Are you a Lord of the Rings fan?) Galactic courage and warfare like to eek their way into my consciousness. (Do you love the new Star Trek movies like I do?)


Yet there is a story recorded in an adventurous, truthful, and relevant book that steals my attention. And it’s not just for Christmastime or Easter. It’s for every day of the year.

faith, Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Mark, Celebrate the Hero This Thanksgiving, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Extraordinary Moments


by Mary Holloman


Tears poured down his cheeks, not unlike the streams of rain making their relentless trek down the window panes. A certain three-year-old had his heart set on playing outside with Daddy, who’d just gotten home from work. But a storm had materialized out of nowhere, forcing me to deliver the terrible news: we had to stay inside.


After the initial stages of denial and anger, my son wiped the tears from his eyes and stared out the window. He crossed his arms and said under his breath, “I will stop the rain.”


Ok, I thought, that didn’t sound menacing at all.

faith, Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Mark, Extraordinary Moments, Mary Holloman, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Enrich the Soil of Your Heart


by Joanna Eccles


Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life
A Blog Series on the Gospel of Mark


The harvest is worth the effort to cultivate good soil. Too often, I sabotage myself by falling into common traps that prevent God’s seed from taking root and thriving. The parable of the sower in Mark 4 highlights some common impediments to growth, but ends with the harvest. How do we avoid the pitfalls of having bad soil? Developing fertile ground requires digging into God’s Word so His truths feed our hearts.

Word of God, obstacles, challenges, faith, Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Mark, Enrich the Soil of Your Heart, Joanna Eccles, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

The Day Helplessness Lost Its Power


by Katy Kauffman


Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life
A Blog Series on the Gospel of Mark


Her skin grew paler with each passing hour. Jairus laid his daughter’s hand back down on the bed, and stood. He looked into his wife’s pleading eyes, and said, “I’ll find Him.” He kissed her on the forehead and headed for the door. He looked at them over his shoulder as his wife knelt beside the bed. He had to find Jesus.


Jairus traveled up and down the dusty streets until the buzzing of a crowd drew him toward the water. People came from everywhere, also drawn to something, or someone, by the edge of the sea. As he approached the multitude and started weaving his way among the crowd, they noticed him—a ruler of the synagogue—and parted, allowing him to pass.


Cries came from weary souls in the crowd. “Jesus, Jesus! Help me!” The very cry of Jairus’ soul. Then Jairus saw Jesus and fell at His feet.  

helplessness, obstacles, challenges, faith, Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Mark, The Day Helplessness Lost Its Power, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

The Day Hopelessness Had No Chance


by Katy Kauffman


Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life
A Blog Series on the Gospel of Mark


The clanging of his chains had become a part of him, as much as the hosts that lived within him. Night and day he roamed the hills, the links of his chains scraping with every jostle and jump. The sound was nothing compared to the torrent of cries and shrieks in his soul. They wouldn’t leave. But they gave him incredible strength. Enough might to break the chains that terrified people had used to try to subdue him.


How fitting that he lived among the tombs. He longed for the relief that the departed souls may have found. They were no longer trapped inside their bodies, like he was. Even though he was here as the only living man among the dead, he was dead inside. Dead to hope, dead to peace, dead to life.

hopelessness, obstacles, challenges, faith, Jesus, Overcoming the Obstacles of the Christian Life, Mark, The Day Hopelessness Had No Chance, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

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