Monday, October 6, 2008
Almost every headline I read I see the signs that the US and other nations around the world are on the brink of a financial meltdown. As I hear experts weigh in on the crisis, I am not convinced, that anybody really knows and understands the intricate framework that makes our financial system. There are several things at the heart of this 'crisis', I am convinced it is twofold, greed at the hand of the lenders and the unwise pursuit of the 'american dream' by people across the country disregarding fundamental financial principles. Financial responsibility by many seems to be not important. Our priorities are so skewed that we don't understand simple principle of 'don't spend more than you make' and we believe the lie that 'that thing' will make us happy, when our hearts are made to be filled with God and Him alone. What the future holds only God knows, so as we daily look at the workings of our world, understand that our world is not owned by the people that think they own it. Please be reminded that it is all God's and 'this is our Fathers world' and it will not be saved by John McCain or Barak Obama. Peace be with you all!!!
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
My daughter Anna was running at a camp retreat I do for the 8th-12th grade students in our school and she ran into a door. We went to the ER and she got two cuts on her face glued shut. During the 15 minute ride to and from the ER my mind was all over the place with, "I hope she doesn't scar." to "This was bad timing." On the way back she said something to Audra and I that we will never forget. She said, "I hope people don't laugh at me." That killed me thinking my little girl is worried about what people think. The more I thought about her little quote, I was sent back to the thought of value. What makes Anna, me or you valuable? The world and church sometimes says your value is in how you dress or look or even how you act. We wear the best clothes to church hoping to do what?? We dress and primp to go to the mall, to do what?? I heard someone advertise for liposuction on the radio today and she said that she gained confidence when she was liposuctioned. My challenge to us is to really evaluate what brings value to the essence of you. It's not your looks or money or your education it is the God loves you no matter what. When you are at your worst He loves you and at your best He loves you. Zephaniah 3:17 tells us 'He joys over us with singing". May you find peace, comfort and contentment in God and not your looks, the stock market or a presidential candidate.
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
How quickly life can change. For many they get up one morning getting ready for a perfectly normal day and a phone call or a visit can change the whole dynamic of the day..... for the better or for the worse. Over the last several weeks my mind has been challenged, hurt and heavy for a friend. Mark Rife and I were inseparable in college, he was in my wedding and our paths separated when he moved to Hawaii. I have spoken with him only a few times since moving there. On August 25 Mark's wife of 3 1/2 years passed away in her sleep. I did not know her or ever meet her. As information about her has been flooded my way over the last several weeks, I have been enamored by her love for God and Mark. As we daily engage in and with those around us take the opportunity to breath life in, make the tears we cry soften our hearts, and may we laugh like its our last. Enjoy life and give the moments to God , hug our children, spouses, family and friends a little tighter. Mark....... may God fill your soul with His grace.
Sunday, August 31, 2008
No............ I am not talking about my marriage, but I have wondered what the perfect marriage to God would look like. What ingredients are necessary for a marriage that honors God and is a true reflection of Christ. Is it money, great sex, good looks, communication, understanding roles, or the husband fearlessly leading His family to Christ in word and deed??? First let me tell you, that I have not arrived at my destination in the journey, I am still traveling -stopping at different depots (not Home Depot) to rest and reflect on what I have learned from Scripture and others. One thing is true, many times we approach this topic with our minds made up by the way we have been taught on TV, in church and at home as children. Let's together, take an unadulterated look at the subject. I have just finished teaching Ephesians chapter 5 to my Sunday School class and I have grown. I have learned that the same important ingredient is necessary in salvation as well. In this ego-driven, 'my way as the man' mentality, this word breaks through like a ray of light. The word is HUMILITY. Lovingly submitting to each other is the key,(Eph. 5:21) esteeming each other as Philippians 2:3 tells us. My challenge to you is to think more, dig deeper, and see the marriage that God has for you or will have for you. May this spark your journey to bring the picture of 'oneness' which is so needed in this dark world.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
School is quickly approaching as the summer fades into the background. This summer was truly memorable for me and my family. My sister came to visit in June to watch Brayden while the rest of us traveled to Colorado to visit our good friends Dale and Jonylan Fincher. Our time in Colorado was amazing to say the least, we four wheeled, fished, went to a parade, relaxed, but the most fun was spending time talking with Dale and Jonylan and getting a burden for their Soulation retreat vision. In Colorado, I came to terms (or owned it) with my thinning hair and as I sat like a 4 year old getting his first barber shop haircut my friends and family watched as a lady took a number 3 guide to my head and left most of my hair on the floor. My sister was a true blessing to have the flexibility to come to NH and spend 9 days with her 2 year old nephew. All in all, she came out unscathed. Good sisters are hard to find. We also were able to stay 5 nights in Newport, RI for FREE. A beautiful pool, great beds, breathtaking beach and amazing food left us wanting more. (Ironically, the kids took turns going the fitness center with me and loved that as much as the rest.) Many trips to Boo Boo Lake in between helped the summer hum along between trips. We truly enjoyed the times together and took many pictures to look at when we are old.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
My thoughts have been heavy as I contemplate the depth of pain they must be going through. With their recent public appearances my thoughts drift to that dreaded Wednesday. The person I can most empathize with is Steven, a father/husband. Reeling from the death of a child and sifting through the pieces of a shattered mind from the other child. His strength and humility challenge me. A song he wrote entitled 'Bring it On' conveys a message of "God whatever you do to drive me closer to You ..... bring it on", much easier said than done. Seeing him still keeping his focus on the One who gives and takes away, presses on my heart to pray and yearn for more devotion to Christ.
Steven and Family on Larry King Live: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9u8T3dL8KYo
Well, the first time doing almost anything brings apprehension and caution so.....as I sit to write, my goal is to share my life and perhaps help you through the journey as well. My valleys, my mountains, my thoughts all displayed for you to observe, question and perhaps relate to. Thank you for taking the time!!