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James makes his final 3 exhortations

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Have you ever been in an argument and right after you end it, you think of the perfect thing you should have said, but now it’s too late to go back and say it with any sort of rhetorical force? The French have an expression for t…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Have you ever been in an argument and right after you end it, you think of the perfect thing you should have said, but now it’s too… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/james-makes-his-final-3-exhortations/

Christian joy can make tough holiday season easier to bear

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "There’s nothing quite like the end of the year. Retailers finally turn a profit. Businesses work on their end-of-year earnings reports. Charities make most of their money. Income taxes come to the minds of millions of Americans (…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances There’s nothing quite like the end of the year. Retailers finally turn a profit. Businesses work on their end-of-year earnings… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/christian-joy-can-make-tough-holiday-season-easier-to-bear/

We cannot know what is unknowable

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "One of my favorite things continues to be epistemology. If you’re not familiar with the study, you’re in for a treat. Epistemology examines how we gain knowledge and information and with what certainty we state that it’s true. In…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances One of my favorite things continues to be epistemology. If you’re not familiar with the study, you’re in for a treat. Epistemology… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/we-cannot-know-what-is-unknowable/

What once brought us joy loses some shine after finding God's grace

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "There’s a funny little word in the New Testament. I don’t want to tell you it’s English translation yet, though, because its English counterpart is extremely unpopular and misunderstood. It only accounted for .00025 percent of th…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances There’s a funny little word in the New Testament. I don’t want to tell you it’s English translation yet, though, because its English… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/what-once-brought-us-joy-loses-some-shine-after-finding-god-s-grace/

Selfishness is biblical foolishness

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "There was a king who loved this woman. He wouldn’t do anything without first consulting her. When he started one of his greatest construction projects, he consulted her first. She helped him with every decision on how it should b…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances There was a king who loved this woman. He wouldn’t do anything without first consulting her. When he started one of his greatest… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/selfishness-is-biblical-foolishness/

We all are evaluated by the way we talk to and about other people

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "One of my greatest failures in ministry came in the middle of a particularly hard mission trip. Every now and then, you might get the opportunity to minister to someone who just gets it. They actually live like they love God and …
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances One of my greatest failures in ministry came in the middle of a particularly hard mission trip. Every now and then, you might get… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/we-all-are-evaluated-by-the-way-we-talk-to-and-about-other-people/

Explaining saved by faith alone principle

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Martin Luther — hero of the reformation and champion of the phrase “sola fide,” or “by faith alone” — hated the book of James. On the one hand, he thought the book as a whole lacked a clear and logical line of thought from beginn…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Martin Luther — hero of the reformation and champion of the phrase “sola fide,” or “by faith alone” — hated the book of James. On… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/explaining-saved-by-faith-alone-principle/

Our own actions put us on wrong side of scale weighing goodness

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Are you a good person? I like to think of myself as someone who “has it together,” is kind to the people I love, and doesn’t delight in cruelty to others. I even treat my waiters well. But does that make me good? Does that make y…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Are you a good person? I like to think of myself as someone who “has it together,” is kind to the people I love, and doesn’t… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/our-own-actions-put-us-on-wrong-side-of-scale-weighing-goodness/

Think you're not good enough for church? That's exactly why we want you

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Somehow, the American church as a whole has communicated to our culture (and I think in some cases has actually believed) that it exists to benefit its own members, and that if you don’t conform to it’s standards, you are subject…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances A dream job is getting paid to do the thing you would do even if you weren’t being paid. Last May, I started my dream job. My… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/think-you-re-not-good-enough-for-church/

Do what God says instead of shooting your mouth off

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Everybody knows James 1:22, even if they don’t know where it is. It’s one of the more forceful and convicting verses in all of Scripture:'But prove yourselves doers of the Word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.' If y…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Everybody knows James 1:22, even if they don’t know where it is. It’s one of the more forceful and convicting verses in all of… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/do-what-god-says-instead-of-shooting-your-mouth-off/

Good things come from God, the bad things come from somewhere else

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Some questions are hard enough to think about when you take a break to sit down and peruse the paper. Questions of why some people suffer so much, or maybe why you yourself are suffering so much. Why does there seem to be so much…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Some questions are hard enough to think about when you take a break to sit down and peruse the paper. Questions of why some people… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/good-things-come-from-god-the-bad-things-come-from-somewhere-else/

What are you praying for?

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "God’s plan for life doesn’t necessarily include being rich. God’s best plan for life does include finding the joy in what God has made you to be."
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances  God’s plan for life does not necessarily include being rich. I know there are members of a growing theological movement who would… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/what-are-you-praying-for/

Are you wise, or just a wise guy?

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Do you want wisdom when you need it? Are you somewhere in your life where you just don’t know what to do? Look to Christ."
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances I am convinced that you and I have a friend in common. That friend who always seems to make really bad decisions, who’s always… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/are-you-wise-or-just-a-wise-guy/

You need trouble

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "I’m sure you’ve found out by now that life is not a walk in the park. In fact, life hurts. We get injured, sometimes seri­ously. We get sick. Friends and loved ones betray us. Sometimes everything just falls apart. When things do…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances I’m sure you’ve found out by now that life is not a walk in the park. In fact, life hurts. We get injured, sometimes seri­ously. We… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/you-need-trouble/

Did you know Jesus was homeless?

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Jesus said, “Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head.” (Luke 9:58) He also commanded wealthy people to give away their money and that’s exactly what his early followe…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Jesus said, “Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head.” (Luke 9:58) He… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/did-you-know-jesus-was-homeless/

I am a religious extremist

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "I realized it the other day, and it’s about time to just admit it. I am a religious extremist, and I’d like you to join me."
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances I realized it the other day, and it’s about time to just admit it. I am a religious extremist, and I’d like you to join me. In the… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/i-am-a-religious-extremist/

The Gospel is our focus in every moral quandary

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Every now and then, the Standard-Times publishes a story that hits a nerve with San Angeloans, as evidenced by the comments on our website. Usually, these stories touch a moral issue and tend to report salacious or wild behavior.…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Every now and then, the Standard-Times publishes a story that hits a nerve with San Angeloans, as evidenced by the comments on our… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/the-gospel-is-our-focus-in-every-moral-quandary/

Is fear controlling your faith?

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "I used to be a facilitator for a team- and leadership-building Boy Scouts program called COPE, or Challenging Outdoor Personal Experience. It’s one of those weekend courses that involves exercises like the trust fall. Another par…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances “You can do this. You have a harness, a rope and a helmet. We’re not going to let you fall.” Often, that’s all it takes. I used… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/is-fear-controlling-your-faith/

God didn't make Hell for you.

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Hell is a hard, remarkably uncomfortable concept. When we think of the fire and pain the Bible associates with Hell, it’s hard to imagine a loving God sending people there. I’ll grant you that. I struggle with it myself. However,…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Hell is a hard, remarkably uncomfortable concept. When we think of the fire and pain the Bible associates with Hell, it’s hard to… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/god-didn-t-make-hell-for-you/

What to do if he forgot Valentine's again

LOOKING UP: Kyle Hooks - "Did you have that awkward moment when he realized that you knew that the wilting rose and cheap chocolate were an afterthought on the way home? After repeated and blatant negligence, complete thoughtlessness and total aloofnes…
Read More Looking Up Read More Upward Glances Did you have that awkward moment when he realized that you knew that the wilting rose and cheap chocolate were an afterthought on the… http://www.lookingupfrombelow.com/read/what-to-do-if-he-forgot-valentine-s-again/