I’ve been known to abuse exclamation points!
“Hi!! How are you?!”
seems friendlier, happier and more excited than
“Hi. How are you?”


In a Wall Street Journal news article on the use of exclamation points, Katherine Bindley writes that “Exclamation points are stressing people out.” Calling it a “tiny little torture device,” Bindley says that it’s overused and may be misinterpreted as either anger or an annoying amount of happiness.

If PB sends me a text that says, “I love you!!!” and I text back, “I love you, too” it falls flat. I have to at least match the number of exclamation points to be believable! Right?!

Or if I send PB a text that says, “Bring home milk!!” he might interpret that as, “How many times do I have to remind you to bring home milk?” When in truth, I’m just excited I don’t have to go out for milk and I love him for running the errand for me!

That little grammatical mark is fraught with danger!

Did you notice that six of the eight verses in Psalm 119:25-32 have exclamation points? That’s a lot of excitement/anger/happiness/emotion! So, what’s up with exclamation points in the Bible?

The original Hebrew and Greek languages of the Bible had no exclamation marks. “In the translation to other languages, punctuation marks were added to help readers make sense of it all. At that time, exclamation points were inserted in places to communicate passion, excitement or urgency.” (Craig Trierweiler, “Read This! It’s Important! My Exclamation Points Prove It!!!)

Consider these scriptures:

  • I believe; help my unbelief! (Mark 9:25)
  • He rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan!” (Mark 8:33)
  • Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! (Romans 6:15
  • Son of David, have mercy on me! (Mark 10:48)

Those little marks express passion and intensity, absurdity and urgency.
They speak volumes, so pay attention to exclamation points!

In this week’s section of Psalm 119, the added punctuation gives extra punch.

  • Give me life according to your word!
  • Teach me your statutes!
  • Strengthen me according to your word!
  • Graciously teach me your law!
  • Let me not be put to shame!
  • Enlarge my heart!

David wasn’t kidding. He was serious. Those exclamation points prove it!

Have a good weekend!!!!!!!!!!

D is for Deep


Deep and wide, deep and wide,
there’s a fountain flowing deep and wide.
Deep and wide, deep and wide,
there’s a fountain flowing deep and wide.

I sang this chorus with my kindergarten Sunday school friends as we sat on little red chairs in the basement of the Methodist church. Mrs. B pounded on the piano with exuberance and we did the hand motions to “deep” and “wide”. The boys in the back row made sure their “wide” motions were wide enough to smack each other. It got really exciting when the words were replaced with “mmm”.

“Mmm and mmm, mmm and mmm, there’s a mmm flowing mmm and mmm.”
It was hilarious when someone forgot to say “mmm” and blurted out “deep” instead.

I couldn’t figure out what M&Ms had to do with Jesus.

As a six year old, I had no idea what this little chorus was about. Mrs. B probably explained that it was a picture of God’s love, unmeasurable and bubbling up eternally. I was probably giggling and whispering with Sharon and Carol and didn’t hear her. Fifty plus years later, I’m still trying to understand how long, how wide, how deep and how high God’s love really is — and to experience it for myself. How can we wrap our minds around something that is so great that we will never see the end of it or fully know it?


Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens above—what can you do? They are deeper than the depths below—what can you know? Their measure is longer than the earth and wider than the sea. –Job 11:7-9

One of my favorite scenes in the gospels is in Luke 5, when Jesus asked to borrow Peter’s boat so He could sit in it and preach to the crowd. When the sermon was over, Jesus told Peter, “Put out into deep water and let down the nets for a catch.” (Luke 5:4) Peter explained that they had been fishing all night and had come up empty.

Plus, everybody knows fish don’t bite in the middle of the day.
Plus, they had just cleaned all the nets.
Plus, professional fishermen didn’t need advise from a carpenter/preacher.
It was time to call it a day and head home.

“But because you say so, I will let down the nets.”
Peter was becoming a disciple and he didn’t even know it.
“They caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break.”
Peter walked away from his biggest catch to follow Jesus.

Obedience is rarely convenient.
Jesus often asks us to do things that don’t make sense.
He calls us into deeper waters.
It’s hard work, but it results in great blessing.
That’s where the fountains flow.

May our roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love.
May we also venture out into the deep waters of faithful obedience.

My favorite word in the Bible that starts with “D” is DEEP.

Next: Exclamation!


Dalet (also written as Daleth or Daled) is the fourth letter in the Hebrew alphabet. It sounds like our letter “D” as in “Dad”. Every line in Psalm 119:25-32 starts with this letter. Dalet looks like this:

Vector illustration of the Hebrew Letter Daleth

Remember from last week how Gimel meant “giver” and how that letter was a picture of a person with his foot stretched out in motion, running toward Dalet to give it gifts? The reason why Gimel was running toward Dalet is because “Dal” means poor, weak, or needy.” The God-Man (Aleph — Jesus) came to earth to be master of the house (Bet) and to give the good gift of redemption (Gimel) to the poor and weak (Dalet).

The word “Dalet” means “door” or “gate”. A door is a barrier that must be opened in order to go through to another place. It separates two spaces and has a threshold which must be crossed.

Jesus said:

I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. John 10:9

Jesus Christ is our means of crossing over from death to life, from darkness to light. But we must go through Him (I am the way… John 14:6). The Messiah is our Dalet, our portal to fellowship with God and eternal life. When a person believes in Jesus and accepts the gift of redemption, it’s like stepping over a threshold into a new life. (“He has crossed over from death to life.” John 5:24)

In Jewish tradition, the fourth letter of the aleph-bet is connected to the fourth day of creation. On day four, God separated the day from night by setting the sun, moon, and stars in the sky. They were to “serve as signs” (Gen. 1:14).

Every sunrise opens the door to a new day.
Each morning sun is a sign to us that Jesus is our source of Light.
“I am the light of the world.” John 8:12.

Every night the moon reflects the sunlight.
Each nighttime sky is a sign to us that darkness can’t prevail.
“The light shines in the darkness,
but the darkness has not overcome it.”
John 1:5

The Dalet-Door is open.
God is turning hearts toward His Son.
Could a global pandemic stir up a resurgence
of spiritual awakening and revival on the earth?
“Revive me according to your word.” Psalm 119:25


Next: My favorite word in the Bible that starts with “D”.